College football season is finally here! If you’re reading this, chances are you’re as excited as I am. In the CFB Game Breakdown, I’ll break down the biggest games of the given week.
With that said, let’s get down to business (and hopefully winning some cash).
Florida Atlantic vs Tulsa
O/U: 66.5 Line: -6.5 Tulsa
Dane Evans ($6,700) is on the verge of a breakout 2015 season, not only does he have two great receiving options in Keevan Lucas ($7,800) and Keyarris Garrett ($5,200), but their new head coach Philip Montgomery brings over his high powered offensive scheme he ran at Baylor. Based on how much the three of them cost, I like the idea of stacking them in cash games. Florida Atlantic allowed over 34 PPG last year and based on the O/U, that’s about what to expect in this game. I like this trio in all formats, but if you’re entering tournaments, obviously you don’t want to stack all three together.
Jaquez Johnson ($6,200) is one of the more intriguing prices of the weekend. Johnson averaged just under 22.9 Draftkings (DK) PPG last year, is a dual threat who carries the ball 10 plus times a game, and is facing a below average defense. He’s 17th in pricing among quarterbacks. This is a good play across the board, it’ll be the cheapest you see him all season.
BYU vs Nebraska
O/U: 63.5 Line: -7 Nebraska
I don’t doubt BYU’s offense has talent, but I want to see them in action before I trust them. Taysom Hill ($10,100) Is coming off a major injury that cost him most of 2014, so him being priced second for quarterbacks makes me uncomfortable. Mitch Mathews ($6,700) is now healthy, but has had some injury issues this summer, so I’m tentative on him as well.
Tommy Armstrong ($7,000) is a great value at his price for both cash and tournaments, and I love stacking him with Jordan Westerkamp($3,900). There’s a huge opening for production in Nebraska’s offense with the departure of Kenny Bell and Ameer Abdullah to the NFL. Demornay Pierson-El, a player Nebraska was relying heavily on, is now out with an injury, so Westerkamp should get the lionshare of targets.
Arkansas vs UTEP
O/U: 50.5 Line: -33 Arkansas
This game could get ugly, quick. Even considering that, Alex Collins ($9,200) is the type of workhorse running back that only needs a half of work to get you 25-30 DK points. If Jonathan Williams were still playing there wouldn’t be enough volume before the blowout was on, especially to pay a top five running back price. But Williams season ending injury shifts a large role onto Collins’ shoulders. I wouldn’t bet an entire bankroll on him, but he’s a safe cash game play. Keon Hatcher ($4,600) has a solid NFL future ahead of him, but not someone you can rely on now because of the offense he plays in, especially in a potential blowout.
Aaron Jones ($8,100) will see plenty of touches, but he’s going against a stingy defense that’s coming off a year where they ranked 15th in points against and finished 22nd in rush yards allowed per game. There’s potential for a lot of dump offs in comeback mode, but it’s tough to justify paying up for Jones this week.
Louisville vs Auburn
O/U: 55.5 Line: -10.5 Auburn
James Quick ($4,400) is the only player on the Louisville offense that piques my interest, matchup and price considered. With Devante Parker moving on to the NFL, Quick appears to be the likely incumbent to take over as the top receiving option. I don’t see Louisville holding up against Auburn, but Quick only needs a few big plays to hit value.
Jeremy Johnson ($ 7,000) showed flashes of brilliance in a small sample last year, thankfully the small sample keeps his price suppressed. Louisville was a top 20 defense last year in PPG, but with Johnson being someone who can have success running and passing, the volume (and DK points) should be there either way.
I’m staying away from Auburn’s running game until someone established themselves as the lead back. From what the coach has mentioned, it should be a committee to start the season. Likewise for the passing game. D’Haquille Williams (5,800) would be a great play, but based on his rough offseason, he’s still working his way back up the depth chart. It’s important to see how he’s used this week and then adjust going forward.
Northwestern vs Stanford
O/U: 45 Line: +12 Northwestern
Normally I wouldn’t suggest any running back playing against Stanford’s defense, but Justin Jackson ($5,000) is so underpriced for the volume he’s going to get, I think he’s a great cash play. Jackson emerged as a bellcow back last year, gaining 100 or more total yards in seven of his last eight games in 2014. There were some concerns over injuries this summer for Jackson, but he is a full go now and is the featured weapon in Northwestern’s offense.
Christian McCaffrey ($4,800) is another solid cash play, and someone who will get the bulk of the carries for Stanford. McCaffrey is a great athlete for his size and was dynamic in a limited sample as a freshman, averaging over 7 yards per rush and 14 yards per reception.
Georgia vs Louisiana-Monroe
O/U: 55 Line: -35 Georgia
Nick Chubb ($10,200) is not someone I’m touching this week. He has the ability to put up huge games, but I’m worried this is going to be a ‘first team is out by halftime’ type game. If that’s the case, and he only gets 10-15 touches, it will be tough to hit value, and it sacrifices too much at other positions. Sony Michel ($4,700) Is one of my favorite tournament plays this week, because of all the factors I talked about with Chubb. Georgia has used a committee type approach the past few years and I expect that to continue with Chubb and Michel as the main beneficiaries. If this game gets out of hand, Michel will get the same 10-15 high efficiency touches, but he’s less than half the price.
Raeshon Caesar ($4,100) and Ajaylen Holley ($3,900) are cheap tournament plays that will be really low percentage because of their opponent.
Clemson vs Wofford
Much like the Georgia game, DeShaun Watson($10,300) and the first team offense should be off the field by the fourth quarter. With that said, Clemson has shown they aren’t afraid to put up big point totals and run up the score in the past. Watson may be expensive, but I really like him and Artavis Scott ($7,800) as reliable cash game plays. Mike Williams ($7,500) is the most talented receiver on Clemson, but he’s been nursing an injury, so he’s more of a gamble with an impending blowout.
Tennessee vs Bowling Green
Jalen Hurd ($6,900) is in a good position against a Bowling Green team that gave up over 200 yards per game on the ground. Hurd is the eighth highest priced running back, but I think he’s a dark-horse to finish as #1. Worthy of both cash and tournament plays.
I’m avoiding the Tennessee passing game, for better or worse. Tons of talent, but it’s tough to gauge who will be the recipient of the passes.
Roger Lewis ($5,700) is a nice player, but was very inconsistent in 2014 and hasn’t face many SEC-like defenses. I don’t believe he has the upside this week that he would normally.