Drew Brees – $6300 / Alvin Kamara – $8700 / Michael Thomas – $8100 / Tre’Quan Smith – $4600 vs Bengals
Must fire up all Saints! Over the last month Cincinnati has given up the 2nd most, or the most fantasy points to all positions. Don’t over think it, just play Brees with Thomas and Kamara as a base lineup. If you are feeling like the Dez news makes things unclear at receiver, don’t. While Dez could provide a slot receiver role at this point in his career, it would be a surprise if he plays after just signing on Wednesday. Tre’Quan Smith is the new hotness that wasn’t so hot last week, but them bringing in Dez could fire him up to prove he is the asset they need on the outside. Thomas has to be doubled consistently at this point so Smith could see those coveted 1v1 looks that provide so much promising upside. And last but never least, Alvin Kamara! There is no way you can pass him on this slate, period. It’s possible to throw the defense in there too because Dalton is down one A.J. Green which could make this turn into a blow out.
Game Stack: Andy Dalton – $5800 / Tyler Boyd – $7500 / John Ross – $3900 @ Saints
With the potential for a blowout in mind, it is safe to assume that an offense missing its best player will be chasing points. If that’s the case, it could be worth it to stack Tyler Boyd in this game. First, his target volume should go up and he is one of Dalton’s best options. Second, the Saints have given up the 2nd most points to passers and the most to receivers on a per game average over the last four weeks. The Saints did see two of the better offenses during that span which potentially tempers this take for you especially when factoring in Boyd’s price (which could cause many to fade him). If you believe that this could be a shootout then you may as well consider saving $500 at QB by selecting Dalton, and hope and pray that John Ross at least flashes that he was worth a first round pick as a GPP shot in the dark.
Baker Mayfield – $5400 / Jarvis Landry – $6200 / David Njoku – $4200 / Duke Johnson Jr. – $4700 vs Falcons
There has to be a way that Cleveland wins some games this season, and this matchup is ripe with potential. Atlanta has averaged the 3rd most points to passers and the 4th most points to receivers and tight ends over their last 3 games which included the Buccaneers, Giants, and Redskins (two of which don’t have great passing games currently). They are also 3rd worst against running backs on the season. This appears to be a great spot for Mayfield, Landry, Njoku, and Duke Johnson to put in some work. We all know the Falcons can’t deal with pass catching RBs and if they are still struggling to defend the pass game at large why not fire up a stack that saves some cash. This 50-point total was considered high last year, and the Browns are only underdogs by less than a touchdown which indicates this game should be competitive.
Game Stack: Matt Ryan – $6200 / Tevin Coleman – $5400 / Calvin Ridley – $5900 @ Browns
Tevin Coleman should receive his fair share of touches considering his performance last week and since Cleveland has been the worst in points to RBs over the past month, we could expect Coleman to exploit this matchup. His price did not increase commensurate with his performance in week 9, which is odd but an opportunity for us. Matt Ryan played well last week finally finding Julio for his first TD! This is awesome for Julio and awesome for us because this overshadowed Calvin Ridley’s 19.7 points which at his current price would have been good for a 3x performance. Atlanta does have the 4th best recent earned vs allowed fantasy points (REvA-FP) matchup for wide receivers this week. Keep in mind that FanShare data indicates that Matt Ryan may not be highly owned and he has the 4th best REvA-FP at the QB position.
Marcus Mariota – $4700 / Dion Lewis – $4600 vs New England
This pick does have a little bit of narrative street baked into it, but the price is pretty nice! Consider his performance last week against the Cowboys defense (no slouch). Mariota could be realizing more of his potential as the season goes on. Facing the Patriots (18th in pass DVOA, 8th rush DVOA) with some slow linebackers makes Lewis a matchup problem as a pass catcher out of the backfield. This is a revenge game for him and Vrabel and they should both be familiar with how to exploit the New England defense.
Mark Ingram – $4500 @ Bengals
Mark Ingram had an amazing fantasy game in his return against the Redskins. Many speculated that his heavy workload in that game was to give Kamara a break. If that is the case, with the Saints poised to make a run, isn’t it possible that Payton wants to manage the workloads between both of these backs to keep them fresher come playoff time? Even if they split carries it’s remember back to last year when there were many weeks where you were good if you played both of them. If we acknowledge those scenarios as possible, then we can stack on top of that the linebacker situation in Cincinnati. Both Burfict and Vigil were non-participants during Wednesday’s practice, and if they miss then whoever carries the ball beyond the line of scrimmage should be able to eat all day. If it’s Ingram getting those carries then at his price it would be an insane steal.
Mike Davis – $4300 @ Rams
This is nothing more than increased opportunity against a middling run defense since Chris Carson looks unlikely to play. Davis looks to get the bulk of the carries, but this is a play that requires balls and caution. If the Rams run up the score quickly then it is possible the game plan goes against him. Also we must consider that Pete Carroll will do something crazy like give half the carries to Rashaad Penny.
Christian Kirk – $4900 @ Chiefs
Every time I have tried to play Kirk in a good matchup this season it seems that Chad Williams gets most of the non-Fitzgerald targets. That should be a virutal impossibility this weekend with Chad Williams missing a Thursday practice due to an ankle injury. Kansas City is still a bottom half defense in fantasy points to receivers. This is a complete tournament play, but it is a pretty sure thing that they will be chasing points in this game thus forcing the Cardinals to throw more and deeper than is typical. Kirk is the default deep threat there so why not take a chance with the increased opportunity?
Bargain Bin Shots
Jordan Howard – $4700 vs Lions
In the last month, the Lions have allowed 120+ rushing yards per game to running backs. The Lions offense looked terrible against a front seven that is arguable on par with the Bears. If we believe that the Beard defense is constantly going to be able to get to Matthew Stafford, then we should also believe that rational coaching could have the Bears salting this game away with the run if they go up two possessions. This sounds like a job for Jordan Howard who has seen 18 touches per game and 3 TDs in his last two. How is this kind of volume available at this price? He is another great cost saving option for us all.
Corey Davis – $4500 vs Patriots
This is some of the cheapest receiver volume you will see for a receiver averaging 7 targets per game. Davis had 12 points against Dallas (#8 in DVOA vs WR1s) and should have had 19 if that end zone target was of higher quality. Now facing the Patriots who are considerably worse in DVOA against primary receivers (22nd) this is a game with blowup potential for him.
Josh Doctson – $4300 @ Buccaneers
Doctson will absolutely be low-owned considering everyone will be staring at Maurice Harris who mustered 124 yards and 10 receptions on 12 targets last week. The upside is the fact that he has twice the red zone targets Harris has this season. Given the poor quality of the Tampa Bay pass defense (31st), and the fact that they have seen the 8th most pass attempts in the red zone gives Doctson a solid chance of producing this week. He did catch a score last week, and if he can simply add some yards and receptions to last week’s production he could easily return 4X value.
Antonio Callaway – $4000 vs Falcons
Callaway hasn’t become what many thought he would be …. yet. However this is a nice spot for him against a pass defense that remains suspect, if not straight up vulnerable, this season. Many will flock to Landry in this matchup, but Callaway provides a nice pivot facing a defense that is 28th in pass DVOA.
Eric Ebron – $3500 vs Jaguars
Jack Doyle seems to be rekindling his old chemistry with Andrew Luck and with that many are looking at Doyle as the best fantasy option in this matchup. Since the Colts have the 3rd best REvA-FP matchup at the tight end position it stands to reason that Doyle and Ebron can coexist in a productive fashion. At Ebron’s price, with his propensity to find the end zone, this is more likely a low-risk, high reward play. If he simply repeats his production from last week (3 recs, 37 yds, and a score) that’s a little over 12 points and about 3.62X value. If you need to save money at the position for other studs, he is sure to be low-owned, and it’s in the realm of possibility that he vultures multiple TDs from Doyle.