Week five brings another opportunity to grind out some small winnings in daily fantasy football or shoot high in DraftKings’ weekly Millionaire Maker contest. I won’t be tossing $20 entries into that GPP, but I will surely be trying to work out some solid rosters in an effort to win big in some other contests.
A really good way to increase your chances of winning any GPP is to stock up on value buys that have a decent chance at paying off. It’s also good to consider their estimated ownership percentage and ultimately the idea should be to produce a balanced roster with some serious upside. Depending on who you like and what you’re trying to do (win it all, duh), maybe you’ll only want 1-2 of these guys.
That’s up to you. My job is to point out the value and give you my insight on what I think will happen in week five. With that, let’s take a look at my favorite value buys under $6k this week at DraftKings.
Quarterbacks: Tyrod Taylor – Bills ($5.8k), Joe Flacco – Ravens ($5.6k), Alex Smith – Chiefs ($5.5k), Jay Cutler – Bears ($5.3k), Michael Vick – Steelers ($5.1k) and Josh McCown – Browns ($5.1k)
Taylor is a terrific value based off of what he can do for you. Really, though, he’s on the road, wasn’t good last week and the Titans have been solid against the pass. The value is certainly there, but there is some risk involved.
You’re hunting for value, though, so there is risk all of the wheres. It doesn’t stop with Flacco, who will be without top weapons Steve Smith and Crockett Gillmore. He still has Justin Forsett and Kamar Aiken, though, and the Browns suck. This is a big game at home and while Baltimore could just run all day, I like him quite a bit. The same goes for Smith and Cutler, who are both cheap and are in the same game. Cutler has the better matchup by the numbers and carries far more upside as a guy that actually throws touchdowns to wide receivers (or in general). He’s also put together a nice resume against the Chiefs from his days with the Broncos, but he can fold on the road at times. Smith has been a yardage fiend and should be good, too, but his upside may be capped by his inability to produce touchdowns.
Last, but not necessarily least, you have the best cheap options in Vick and McCown. Both could go down in flames, but they’re super cheap and both carry some upside. Vick is on the road against the top defense (Chargers) against quarterbacks in fantasy football (per DK, anyways), so there is some mild reason for concern. However, he can produce points with his legs, still has a big arm and has a ton of weapons at his disposal. He should be able to get you 15-18 fantasy points. The same goes for McCown, who faces a bad Ravens pass defense and has put up at least 23 fantasy points in his last two starts. Then again he’s probably due for regression, is on the road and is still JOSH FREAKING MCCOWN.
Running Backs: Justin Forsett – Ravens ($5.8k), Dion Lewis – Patriots ($4.8k), Doug Martin – Buccaneers ($4.7k), T.J. Yeldon – Jaguars ($4.4k), Todd Gurley – Rams ($4.3k), Thomas Rawls – Seahawks ($3.8k), Chris Thompson – Redskins ($3.3k) and Boobie Dixon – Bills ($3k)
These aren’t the only value picks at running back, but they’re the ones I like or am somewhat considering. Forsett went off last week and now is at home against an atrocious Cleveland run defense. He should do that again, but hopefully this week he also scores. Lewis is super involved in New England’s offense across the board and one way or another is going to get you 15+ fantasy points. The best part is he doesn’t need to score to do that.
The Muscle Hamster could be tricky against the Jags, who actually stop the run pretty well. He does have upside and is a solid value, though. The same goes for Yeldon, who is a good price and has the role to go off, but he still needs to get his first score of his career. Gurley is right there with these guys and I’m slowly working my way away from him, just because the expectations are too high and he’s on the road against a very good Packers team. He did carve up the Cardinals in Arizona last week, though, and the value is certainly insane.
I am not enamored with Rawls or anything Seahawks, but Lynch is out and the dude has a role. He runs very physically, too, and just needs a touchdown to return value. On the road against the Bengals isn’t necessarily the best route to that, of course. Thompson is a different risk, as he should be somewhat involved in Washington’s offense no matter what, but you’re largely banking on the Redskins getting smoked and him seeing a ton of work as a receiver with them in catchup mode. Not a real reach, but still a risk.
Dixon is in a league of his own because of the price and because we know the Bills want to run the ball. Problem is he’s not a special talent and is on the road. He has a great matchup against a soft Tennessee run defense, but he’s Anthony Dixon and even has a minor calf ailment. But he’s the minimum and if he can plunge in for a short score or two, he could be the value play of the week.
Wide Receivers: Jeremy Maclin – Chiefs ($6k), Brandin Cooks – Saints ($5.9k), James Jones – Packers ($5.7k), Allen Robinson – Jaguars ($5.5k), Kendall Wright – Titans ($5.4k), Vincent Jackson – Buccaneers ($5k), Travis Benjamin – Browns ($4.5k), Doug Baldwin – Seahawks ($4.2k), Leonard Hankerson – Falcons ($4k), Kamar Aiken – Ravens ($3.8k), Martavis Bryant – Steelers ($3.8k), Dontrelle Inman – Chargers ($3.3k), Michael Floyd – Cardinals ($3k), Willie Snead – Saints ($3k)
There’s some more value out there at receiver, but I won’t list everyone. Maclin is an obvious play, as he’s gone nuts the past two weeks and gets a shaky Bears defense at home. Cooks is just a good value and is due as balls. Jones keeps getting the job done, no matter how much we all expect him to regress. I’m loving Robinson this week and though that will surely backfire in my unsuspecting face, he is a king at the deep ball and is a nice red-zone threat. After not scoring the past two weeks I like him to blow up.
Wright seems safe as heck, as he’s got a good role and should be behind the Bills all day. He probably won’t score but something like 7 catchs for 70 yards is in order. V-Jax went off last week and is just an insane value, even if he’s hit or miss. I actually prefer teammate Mike Evans ($6.1k), but Jackson is cheaper and just as explosive. Benjamin just keeps putting up points, brah.
Baldwin faces a shaky Bengals pass defense and should be needed, Hankerson is very involved in a very good ATL offense, plus he’s at home against a bad Redskins pass defense. Aiken is all Joe Flacco has really, so he’s bound to get targeted a ton. Bryant is just so explosive so you gotta use him at least once (if he plays). Inman’s value likely hinges to Malcom Floyd’s status (concussion). Stevie Johnson has already been ruled out though, so he’s more interesting by the second.
Floyd and Snead are criminally under-priced, as both are seeing targets and have red-zone capability. I like Snead a little more just because he’s been consistently involved, while Floyd tends to be extra hit or miss due to how he’s largely used on down field throws. Both are worth a shot, especially for stacking the hell out of your roster.
Tight Ends: Travis Kelce – Chiefs ($5.2k), Martellus Bennett – Bears ($5k), Antonio Gates – Chargers ($4.2k), Delanie Walker – Titans ($3.8k), Owen Daniels – Broncos ($2.7k), Derek Carrier – Redskins ($2.5k)
Kelce is just a machine and is bound to blow up again soon. He’s at home and while Chicago has fared well against tight ends mostly, the only time they faced a good tight end was against Jimmy Graham and they didn’t stop him. Bennett also has a tough matchup by the numbers but who else is Jay Cutler going to throw to?
Gates returns from a suspension and though he’s rather TD dependent, you gotta think Philip Rivers forces the issue a bit. We’re talking about fantasy football’s #2 tight end from last year and he’s a score away from 100 career touchdowns. I can’t see him coming out all weak sauce.
Walker is just a sweet value and has a steady role, plus he’s at home and the Bills stink against the tight end position. Daniels has that argument nailed down this week, as he faces a Raiders defense that ranks dead last in guarding the tight end. He’s still Owen Daniels and normally isn’t a TD machine, though. Carrier is even less reliable but history suggests the Redskins and Kirk Cousins love using the tight end, while Carrier is a guy with good size, speed and athleticism. He could easily be a dud but for that price he could be worth the risk.
Team Defenses: Giants ($2.9k), Jaguars ($2.7k), Rams $2.3k)
Every defense is below $6k, so we’ll roll with super cheap options below $3k. New York is at home against Colin Kapernick, so if they don’t get something like 4 sacks and 2 picks it’s on them. Jacksonville is OK and gets Jameis Winston, who just tossed 4 picks last week. They’re obviously worth considering. St. Louis is a slightly tough sell in Lambeau where they could easily get trounced, but they DID just go into Arizona last week and stifle the Cardinals. The Rams can be run on, but their pass rush gets sacks and they’ve been stingy against the pass a bit. I’m not necessarily in love with what their end score will be, but given how erratic team defenses tend to be (Cardinals bombed last week, and all), I’m not against dumpster diving for a defense that averages nearly 10 fantasy points per game.
Dig my advice or enjoyed the article? Help us both out by signing up for DraftKings and depositing today and we both get a FREE entry into the week 5 Millionaire Maker contest. You have to be a new member and be making your first deposit, of course. Good luck this week, either way!