For the second week in a row my daily teams struggled. My Monday-Thursday lineups helped pull me back closer to even, but it wasn’t terribly close.
That’s a second week in a row of struggles. It’s going to happen to everybody. I hope our advice helped you more than it did me.
Despite the struggle last week, I still have quite a bit of confidence in our system. However it’s important to keep a few things in mind:
- Only play 10% of your bankroll. Your bankroll is the amount you are going to play with this year. Wagering more than 10 percent sets you up to go bankrupt before the season is over. Only wager more if you play a lot of cash games and have found success there.
- Always follow rule No. 1, unless you find some serious overlay. And even then, don’t go overboard. We’re all going to have bad weeks, even when we do everything right. Don’t spend so much that you can’t recover from it the following week. This allows us to brush off a bad week and move on to the next.
OK, let’s get to this weeks sleepers and values at FanDuel. I will reference Defense-adjusted Value Over Average a lot, it is a Football Outsiders’ metric which can be a better predictor of future success than fantasy points allowed. All team rankings and yards allowed to receivers are referenced from Football Outsiders’ Defense Efficiency page.
Week 11 daily fantasy: Draft Kings sleepers | FanDuel sleepers
Case Keenum, $4,800, STL at BAL — While I’m not sure Keenum will have a great week, he’s priced like a defense, a value you just never find on FanDuel. He also gets to face the Ravens, who are the eighth-worst NFL team against the pass. Pair Keenum and Kenny Britt or Keenum and Tavon Austin in a tournament and it could payoff in a huge way for you.
Derek Carr, $7,700, OAK at DET — Carr feels like an iffy cash game play. However, he does feel a bit safer than someone like Matthew Stafford, who we’ll get to in a bit. It doesn’t hurt that the Lions are fifth in DVOA against the pass and fifth in fantasy points allowed to opposing quarterbacks in the last five weeks.
Alex Smith, $6,200, KC at SD — I can’t really get behind Smith even though opposing quarterbacks tend to benefit from facing the Chargers. However, Smith’s price is among the best values on FanDuel this week, and if you’re looking for a super-value option, Smith is safer than Keenum.
Matthew Stafford, $7,000, DET vs. OAK — I really want to make Stafford a cash game pick this week, but his realistic floor is too low. I will however, have a couple Stafford tournament lineups — Oakland has allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks in the last five weeks.
Mark Sanchez, $6,400, PHI vs. TB — Like Keenum, Sanchez found himself in a surprise starting role this week, which means his price is low. I like him a lot more than some of the other people in the industry. I fully expected a competition for the QB job in the preseason. Bradford is probably more talented, but if the Eagles look this week anything like they did last season, he may have a tough time getting his job back from Sanchez.
Cam Newton, $8,600, CAR vs. WAS — DVOA has the Redskins toward the bottom-middle in the NFL in both passing and rushing defense. They’ve allowed the 12th-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks in the last five weeks. I’m more excited that they’ve allowed the fourth-most points to running backs in the last five weeks. Newton’s rushing ability gives him an edge and has helped him to one of the highest fantasy points-per-game averages this season.
Matt Hasselbeck, $6,300, IND at ATL — I like the Falcons defense this week partially because Hasselbeck is under center. However, I don’t mind him as a tournament play paired with T.Y. Hilton or Coby Fleener because his salary is so low.
Matt Ryan, $7,800, ATL vs. IND — Ryan’s favorite target, Julio Jones, will have to contend with Vontae Davis for at least half of the plays this week, however matchups indicate this could be a big week for WR2 Leonard Hankerson and TE Jacob Tamme.
Carson Palmer, $8,200, ARI vs. CIN — The Bengals have the 9th-best pass defense according to DVOA and have given up the sixth-least fantasy points to quarterbacks. This matchup scares me a bit in cash games, but Palmer is definitely in play in tournaments. There are some who would argue Palmer, like Brady, is nearly matchup proof.
Charcandrick West, $7,100, KC at SD — West will likely be the most owned running back in daily fantasy this week. He’s an extreme value at Draft Kings, but even here at FanDuel at $2,600 more, he’s a strong value. He’s been getting Jamaal Charles-esque usage and has a killer matchup against a defense that is dead last in run defense DVOA.
Danny Woodhead, $6,400, SD vs. KC — Woodhead always feels like he’s going to burn me. I’m reluctant to roster him at this price point, but the formula says he’s one of the best values of the week, and one of only a handful of sub-$7,000 running backs we should consider in cash games.
Devonta Freeman, $9,100, ATL vs. IND — The Colts have given up the 8th-most fantasy points to opposing running backs in the last five weeks. Meanwhile, Freeman has been assaulting NFL opponents since he took over the starting gig after Week 3. Freeman and West cost quite a bit more to roster at FanDuel, making it more difficult to roster both. Freeman is probably the safest running back play on the board this week.
Darren McFadden, $6,800, DAL at MIA — Romo’s return should be nothing but good things for McFadden. The RB is hurt, so that’s something to monitor for Sunday, but if he plays you must consider him in all formats. No team has allowed more fantasy points to running backs in the last five weeks than the Dolphins.
Lamar Miller, $7,400, MIA vs. DAL — Miller has been a workhorse, getting piles of carries and catches. There are two schools of thought on the emergence of Jay Ajayi — that it’s going to cut into Miller’s value or that he’s only going to complement Miller. The Cowboys are sixth-worst in the NFL against the run, according to DVOA. That means we might have more clarity after this week. I’m using Miller this week and not worrying about Ajayi.
DeMarco Murray, $7,600, PHI vs. TB — Ryan Mathews is out, which means Murray may get all the touches he can handle this week. He’s been killing it since that early, and much-publicized, slump. It is, however a tough matchup, according to both DVOA and fantasy points allowed. There are people smarter than me who think rushing matchups are overrated and that it’s more about volume. As we’ve seen the last few weeks with West, Miller and Jeremy Langford, that may very well be the case.
Latavius Murray, $6,800, OAK at DET — I was surprised to see Murray at such a low price point. He gets such a huge percentage of his teams chances in the red zone and out of the backfield that he has the potential to have a massive game every week, but especially when his team is in the projected highest-scoring game of the week.
Chris Ivory, $7,200, NYJ at HOU — Ivory just missed the cut on our Draft Kings values, but he slides in here as one of our top running back choices at FanDuel. Houston has allowed the 10th-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. Ivory appears to be healthy, running strong and prepared to take advantage of the matchup.
James Starks, $6,200, GB at MIN — After Eddie Lacy was made inactive last week, most of the industry changed their lineups to get Starks in them. He didn’t go off as expected, but he has outplayed Lacy and should out score him in fantasy again this week. The Vikings have the fifth-worst run defense according to DVOA, however they’ve also allowed the fourth-least fantasy points to opposing running backs. That uncertainty — and the uncertainty with the number of carries Lacy might get if he plays — means Starks is a tournament-only play for me.
Justin Forsett, $6,900, BAL vs. STL — The Rams have the fourth-best run defense DVOA, but over the last five weeks they’ve allowed the 12th-most fantasy points to opposing running backs. They also haven’t been very good at stop pass-catching backs this season.
Adrian Peterson, $8,900, MIN vs. GB — Even at age 30, Peterson is matchup proof. As long as he is healthy and toting the rock, he can take over a game like he did last week. Peterson’s price at FanDuel is further proof of how great a play he is at $6,800 on Draft Kings.
Julio Jones, $9,100, ATL vs. IND — The formulas say Jones will be a good value, but I fear he may miss value facing Vontae Davis this week. I’m avoiding him in cash games. However, he is $200 cheaper on FanDuel than at Draft Kings. That’s an opportunity for us in tournaments.
Larry Fitzgerald, $7,400, ARI vs. CIN — Fitzgerald is only $200 more here than he is at Draft Kings. It’s not a particularly great matchup for any of the Cardinals receivers, but Palmer appears on both the Draft Kings and FanDuel value charts, meaning he’s expected to overcome the bad matchup. If he does, Fitzgerald will too.
Amari Cooper, $7,200, OAK at DET — Cooper’s matchup and price aren’t nearly as good as Michael Crabtree’s, but the Raiders offense is in the projected highest scoring game of the week. We have to believe Cooper will get in on the action regardless of what the matchup looks like on paper.
Danny Amendola, $6,100, NE vs. BUF — This is just an echo in the noise surrounding Amendola’s ascension into Julian Edelman’s starting role. He has a price anyone in DFS can afford and has caught nearly everything (40 of 45 targets) thrown his way. There is some scuttlebutt that he may not get all of Edelman’s work and that he’s being overrated. I’ll probably have him in every cash game lineup this week and a couple tourneys too.
Steve Johnson, $5,600, SD vs. KC — Johnson hasn’t been able to do much with piles of targets, but he will. That’s one of those positive regressions we’re always looking for. The targets will keep coming because the Chargers receiving ranks are so depleted. The Chiefs have allowed the third-most receiving yards per game to opposing No. 1 wide receivers.
Michael Crabtree, $6,500, OAK at DET — The Lions have allowed the seventh-most yards per game to opposing No. 2 wide receivers and Crabtree has been crushing well beyond his $6,500 salary. He feels like a must-play in the projected highest-scoring game of the week.
Chris Givens, $4,500, BAL vs. STL — Givens showed elite talent as a rookie a few years ago and has had a couple flashes this season. He could break out at any moment. The Rams have been stingy against WR2s, but Baltimore will probably be behind, increasing their number of passes thrown, which also increases Givens’ potential to have a day at minimum price. He’s strictly a tournament play, but one worth considering.
Demaryius Thomas, $7,700, DEN at CHI — The growing belief is that Denver can’t be any worse on offense with Brock Osweiler at quarterback than they were with Peyton Manning. One of the key stats from last week was Demaryius Thomas racking up six of his seven catches after Osweiler took over. We all know Thomas is an $8,700 value, he’s just been held back by Manning. The Bears have allowed the seventh-least yards per game to opposing No. 1 wide receivers.
Marvin Jones, $5,400, CIN at ARI — Arizona is not a particularly great matchup for opposing wide receivers — they’ve allowed the 10th-least receiving yards per game to WR2s — but Jones is a big play waiting to happen. Like Givens above, his salary is low, making him an interesting lottery ticket in tournaments.
Calvin Johnson, $8,100, DET vs. OAK — The Raiders have allowed the fourth-most passing yards per game to opposing No. 1 wide receivers. This price and value ranking is another indicator of how great a value Johnson is at Draft Kings, where he costs $1,100 less.
Mike Evans, $8,000, TB at PHI — Pretty much everyone will own Evans this week. Like Johnson, his price isn’t nearly as good at FanDuel, but he’s still a top choice. The Eagles have allowed the second most yards per game to opposing No. 1 wide receivers.
Greg Olsen, $6,400, CAR vs. WAS — Olsen’s price is high and his on-paper matchup is the worst this week. The Redskins have allowed the least fantasy points to opposing tight ends in the last five weeks. They’ve also yielded the seventh-least yards per game to the position. Still, we think Newton is in for a big game and as goes Newton, so usually goes his talented TE. It’s worth noting he only costs $200 more at FanDuel than he does at Draft Kings. Typically, FanDuel prices are elevated. So if you play at both sites and you want some exposure to Olsen, he makes a stronger play at FanDuel than at Draft Kings.
Travis Kelce, $5,700, KC at SD — It’s not a particularly great matchup for Kelce, but it’s not terrible either. Alex Smith is expected to have a decent game — as a quarterback facing the Chargers. Kelce’s price is too low and his potential is too high to ignore.
Martellus Bennett, $5,200, CHI vs. DEN — I thought it a bit odd that Bennett was on this list. It seems like he’s being phased out in favor of Zach Miller, who isn’t exactly a young up-and-comer — he’s an eight-year pro. This is a good reminder, than Bennett could still be one of the top tight ends in the NFL. He could go overlooked by a lot of daily fantasy owners, providing a contrarian play as one of the least expensive tight ends on the board. It’s not a great matchup, but his price keeps us interested.
Jordan Reed, $5,800, WAS at CAR — Carolina has allowed the ninth-most fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends. While I expect Kirk Cousins to struggle against that Panthers defense, I expect Reed to run free for some yards and, maybe, get in the end zone. His price has climbed, but it’s still a value.
Jason Witten, $5,500, DAL at MIA — Like all Cowboys, Witten gets an instant upgrade with the return of Tony Romo. Even as one of the older tight ends in the NFL, Witten can still do quite a bit when he gets enough targets and he presents a good bit of salary relief on a site with much tighter pricing than Draft Kings.
Rob Gronkowski, $8,400, NE vs. BUF — Gronkowski has disappointed so many fantasy owners this season. He just hasn’t been targeted as much as we’d like. That could all change this week with the Patriots receiving corps on the mend. There’s enough value this week that getting Gronk in there is no stretch. Both yards per game allowed and fantasy points allowed suggest it’s going to be a bad game.
Eric Ebron, $5,400, DET vs. OAK — Ebron is a targets machine who could get on track against Oakland in one of the highest scoring games of the week. I will have a few shares of him in tournaments. His price here seems more accurate than at Draft Kings, that also makes him a much better value there, especially considering it’s a full PPR.
Dan Bailey, $4,600, DAL at MIA
Sebastian Janikowski, $4,600, OAK at DET
Graham Gano, $4,800, CAR vs. WAS
Matt Prater, $4,500, DET vs. OAK
Chandler Catanzaro, $4,700, ARI vs. CIN
Justin Tucker, $4,900, BAL vs. STL
Baltimore Ravens, $4,100, vs. STL
Kansas City Chiefs, $4,400, at SD
New York Jets, $4,700, at HOU
Carolina Panthers, $4,900, vs. WAS
Green Bay Packers, $4,600, at MIN
Chicago Bears, $4,200, vs. DEN
Philadelphia Eagles, $4,900, vs. TB
New England Patriots, $4,800, vs. BUF
Arizona Cardinals, $4,800, vs. CIN