WEDNESDAY’S DFS NEWS NUGGETS
1. Panthers won’t slow down Cam Newton’s rushing pace
Cam Newton’s career-high for rushing attempts is 127, set back in 2012. This year, he’s on pace for 172 attempts – and the Panthers don’t have a problem with that. They don’t really have a choice anyway if they want to win games, as their current top-three wideouts are Ted Ginn, Corey Brown and Jerricho Cotchery (ankle, questionable). Kelvin Benjamin (knee) is done for the year and Devin Funchess has been a big disappointment. Newton running with the football is the best way for this team to create a threat and move the football, which is why they’re calling so many designed runs for their $118 million man. Those 8-12 rushes per game ensures Newton’s floor will stay massively high every week. I won’t use him at Seattle Week 5, but he has nice spots vs. Philly in Week 6, Colts Week 7, Packers Week 8, Titans Week 9, Redskins Week 10 and so on.
2. Ravens WR corps thins out even further
Steve Smith Sr. has been diagnosed with microfractures in his back/ribs and won’t play Week 5. Breshad Perriman (knee) also remains sidelined and Michael Campanaro is also hurt. That leaves Kamar Aiken as the No. 1 wideout heading into Sunday’s game against the Browns, with Marlon Brown, Darren Waller and newly acquired Chris Givens in support. Yikes. In a week where we will be desperate for punts so we can get access to the high-priced studs in great spots (see No. 4), Aiken will be worth looking closely at. He ran a 4.45 at his Pro Day in 2011 at 6’2/215 and has a strong athleticism profile. So far this season Aiken has played on 76.3 percent of the snaps and compiled an 11-165-1 line. He costs $3800 on DraftKings this week.
3. Roddy White complains about role in Falcons offense
If you watched closely last year, you saw Roddy White get outplayed by Harry Douglas. Then you saw Kyle Shanahan bring in a toolsy project from the Redskins in Leonard Hankerson. At that point, there was a good chance Roddy was done. That’s come true so far, as White has two catches for eight yards over the last three weeks. Meanwhile, Hankerson has popped off for 15-222-2. Then we got this from Roddy on Tuesday via ESPN: “For me, at the end of the day, I want to catch passes. “I’m not out here just f—cking around just to sit around to just block f—cking people all day. It’s not what I want to do.” This might be a squeaky wheel narrative if White could still play. But he can’t, so I’ll have some Hankerson at $4000 this week in one of the best matchups a wideout can have – home against the Redskins.
4. Week 5 is a week for the studs
There are normally one or two high-priced players each week that I think are really worth paying up for. This week, there are five that I believe are in pristine spots. Julio Jones at home against an inept/injured Redskins secondary. Le’Veon Bell ticketed for 25-30 touches against San Diego. Jamaal Charles home against a Bears team that will regress off last week. Odell Beckham against a Niners defense that peaked last week. Rob Gronkowski a great bet to Gronk spike once or twice at Dallas. There are going to be a lot of stars and scrubs lineups this week – deciding which studs to get and how many you can fit will be the key.