Gear up for the Millionaire Maker this Sunday with these picks and plays.


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QUARTERBACK

Tom Brady, New England (at NYG) – $8600

Brady isn’t the best value at quarterback this week, but the fact that he’s $1,100 more expensive than any other quarterback should draw down his ownership a bit. I think there’s going to be a lot of sharp money on some cheap quarterbacks this week.

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay (vs DET) – $7500

The biggest fear for me with Rodgers is that the Packers are going to destroy the Lions. They’re currently 10.5-point favorites, and the Packers do tend to sit on a lead a bit (as opposed to the Pats, who will keep throwing late). However, at 30 implied points, there’s still plenty of upside for Rodgers in this game.

VALUE OF THE WEEK

Blake Bortles, Jacksonville (at BAL) – $5600

Over the past 12 months, the Ravens have allowed 6.7 points above expectation to quarterbacks. The only defense worse is the Saints. There’s going to be a lot of people on both Bortles and Kirk Cousins for $400 cheaper, but I prefer Bortles just because I think he’s a better player and has a more obvious stack with Allen Robinson.


RUNNING BACK

Todd Gurley, St. Louis (vs CHI) – $7300

How can you not be on Gurley, playing at home against a weak defense, with the Rams as seven-point favorites? This is one of those picks that will be popular, but you still need exposure. It’s also one for which no math is necessary; you just know a good situation when you see it.

Justin Forsett, Baltimore (vs JAX) – $6000

The Jags are decent against running backs, but tend to struggle more with those who can catch the ball out of the backfield. The Ravens are five-point home favorites and projected nicely at over 26 implied points, but Forsett has some safety if Baltimore gets down given his pass-catching ability.

VALUE OF THE WEEK

Matt Jones, Washington (vs NO) – $3300

The Skins’ line has moved a lot this week and they’re now just a one-point underdog. The risk with Jones is an uncertain workload and you can’t have too much exposure to him because of that, but he’s worth a flier in the Millionaire Maker if you want to go chalk elsewhere.


WIDE RECEIVER

Emmanuel Sanders, Denver (vs KC) – $7300

This is an example of trying to exploit quirks in player pricing to get low ownership. Sanders probably wouldn’t be that popular anyway, but he should be extra low given that teammate Demaryius Thomas is just $100 more expensive. Thomas is the better value with more upside, but I’d argue Sanders will be the better GPP play because most will fork over the $100 extra for the Broncos’ No. 1 receiver.

Randall Cobb, Green Bay (vs DET) – $6700

Cobb had a decent game last week, but he still is underperforming in a major way. Because of that, his price has dropped $1,300 since the start of the season, which historically leads to value. I love that Cobb is the same price as Allen Robinson, who I think most DraftKings players will prefer.

VALUE OF THE WEEK

Brandon LaFell, New England (at NYG) – $4100

LaFell is definitely a value—perhaps the best of the week at the position—so he’s going to be popular. I generally don’t target players who I don’t think are realistic bets for 12 or so targets, but LaFell has enough upside in this offense—especially if he can steal a couple red zone looks from Gronk—that I’m okay with it.


TIGHT END

Rob Gronkowski, New England (at NYG) – $8000

Gronk isn’t a good value relative to other tight ends—that’s because of the large deviation in pricing at the position—but he’s also Gronk, and Gronk is scarce. It’s tough to say if it makes sense to eat the value and roster him if you think he won’t be in a ton of lineups just because there’s a huge opportunity cost associated with it.

Travis Kelce, Kansas City (at DEN) – $4800

I’m still a Kelce believer. The Broncos obviously have an awesome defense, but they’ve allowed 2.5 points per game above expectation to opposing tight ends over the past year. The thing that’s scary is Kansas City’s 18.3 implied points, so this is a risk.

VALUE OF THE WEEK

Richard Rodgers, Green Bay (vs DET) – $3000

Rodgers is another example of a player who is probably a value, but might not have the upside you’re looking for in the Millionaire Maker. He did see nine targets last week, though, and the Packers obviously have the ability to give him a bunch of red zone looks. This is just a matter of how many times you think he’ll see the ball.


DEFENSE/SPECIAL TEAMS

St. Louis Rams (vs CHI) – $3600

The Rams have one of the best defensive lines in the NFL and should be able to get after Jay Cutler even without blitzing. Cutler is pretty much the prototype quarterback you want your defense to face.

Green Bay Packers (vs DET) – $3200

I think the Packers are my favorite defense play this week. They’re 10.5-point favorites at home against a quarterback who we know is turnover-prone. In all likelihood, Stafford is going to need to drop back a whole lot of times in this game, too.

VALUE OF THE WEEK

Philadelphia Eagles (vs MIA) – $2700

I’m not that much of a fan of the cheaper defenses this week, but Philly always has a decent probability for a return touchdown. They’re also six-point favorites at home against Tannehill and the Dolphins, and the pace of their games creates more opportunities for the defense to get after the passer.

Jonathan Bales is the author of the Fantasy Sports for Smart People book series, most recently Fantasy Football for Smart People: How to Win at Daily Fantasy Sports.

Follow him @BalesFootball.