Everyone knows the high priced stars that they’d love to load their lineups with, but you’ll need low-priced value plays to make it all work. Let’s look at who that might be for Week 1.
Like last season, values are 5.5K and below for QBs, under 5K for RB/WR, under 4K for TE and under 3K for DEF. Contact me with any questions on Twitter @JasonWalker_72.
Let’s get to Week 1!
Dak Prescott ($5,000) – Prescott is the popular choice as he’ll take over from Tony Romo, has a brilliant offensive line, a top pick at RB ready to roll, and Dez Bryant/Jason Witten. He can also leg runs out, so making a 3x impact shouldn’t be hard for Prescott to do.
Carson Wentz ($5,000) – A pivot from Prescott could be to pick on the Browns defense with Wentz, who became the starter when Sam Bradford was sent packing to Minnesota. The Browns had a truly bad defense last season and are forecasted for more of the same. And the Eagles have a top ten offensive line of their own, strong running backs and receivers.
Blaine Gabbert ($5,2000) – In the even lower ownership corner, there’s Gabbert, who picks up the pacy Chip Kelly offense for Week 1. Play volume alone, along with the tiny price tag and your own executive suite in the Gabbert Inn, are reasons to take a look at Gabbert. Getting Carlos Hyde back helps, and Kelly always seems to make the WR1 work for his teams, and Gabbert has to be the guy to start it all.
Spencer Ware ($4,400) – With Jamaal Charles probably not ready for Week 1, Spencer Ware almost has the entire Chiefs backfield to himself. Because the Chiefs are seven point favorites over the Chargers, who were abysmal against the run last season, Ware can be expected to be a very popular play.
Christine Michael ($3,700) – The Seahawks are also heavy favorites this week (10 points), and with the team being unwilling to rush Thomas Rawls back from his ankle injury, Michael’s standing has risen, making his 3.7K price tag very tempting. Seattle likes to settle into the run, especially when leading, so it’s easy to envision Michael getting 17-20 carries.
James White ($3,600) – You never know with New England, but White saw a very large percentage of the pass snaps last season after Dion Lewis went down and the team has said they’ll be sure to have him run out of the backfield this season as well. If that’s true, he’ll be higher than the 25-30ish snaps per game he saw last season. If the Cardinals are out in front as Vegas thinks (six point favorites right now), then we could see White closer to the 53 snaps he saw in Week 13 of last season.
Charles Sims ($4,400) – Falcons head coach Dirk Koetter moved Sims all around the field on offense during the preseason, looking to increase the now-3rd down running back’s role in the offense. Against the Falcons, the Bucs look like they’ll be trailing (Tampa is a three point underdog) and that means more snaps for Sims.
Marvin Jones ($4,600) – Jones has taken the WR1 role on the Lions and will be a popular play against the Colts, who are without top CB Vontae Davis for Week 1. The game total is a healthy 51 points and the Lions don’t have much in the way of a running game, meaning Jones will see plenty of targets.
Tajae Sharpe ($3,000) – Sharpe’s route-running abilities convinced the Titans to trade Dorial Beckham-Green to the Eagles and start Sharpe. At the basement price of 3K, it won’t take much for Marcus Mariota to get Sharpe to value, and the Titans upgraded their backfield, where Demarco Murray and Derrick Henry should open things up for the pass.
Rishard Matthews ($3,300) – It’s the same story for Matthews, playing on the other side from Sharpe. Mariota will likely complete 21-23 passes, his average towards the end of last season, so the eight catches or so between Sharpe and Matthews will help both make value.
Will Fuller ($3,700) – The game script could be that the Bears may sell out to cover Deandre Hopkins and make Fuller prove himself. Given the uptempo nature of Houston’s offense, Fuller’s 4-5 catches for 60-70 yards will be close to the 3x we’re looking for here.
Michael Thomas ($4,000) – A similar situation exists for the Saints, who may see Brandin Cooks get a lot of attention and Thomas will get a tremendous matchup with DJ Hayden. With the Saints at home with a 50+ game total, Thomas looks to get a lot of activity right away.
Dwayne Allen ($3,200) – Allen hasn’t been the same since his rookie season, but the team let Coby Fleener go and they signed Allen, so they obviously believe he’s still their top guy at TE. Against the Lions, Allen will have his chance to re-establish himself. Along with Donte Moncrief, Allen is Andrew Luck’s best redzone/endzone option, so we’ll know very quickly if Allen returns to glory.
Jared Cook ($2,900) – Jared Cook, now with Aaron Rodgers, will have no excuses if it doesn’t work out with the Packers. Cook is slated to run the profitable Jermichael Finley routes and should find good room to run those routes against the Jaguars, who were terrible in defensive efficiency against the tight end position.
Tyler Kroft ($2,700) – He’s probably not a Tyler Eifert clone, but Andy Dalton threw to his TEs 21% of the time last season, including an incredible amount of times to Eifert near the goal line. Kroft will be manning the position against the Jets, who were merely average defending the position last season.
Green Bay Packers ($2,800) – Jacksonville and Blake Bortles give opposing defenses chances to score, be it through sacks of Bortles or interceptions. The Packers are an interesting way to fade the Jaguars preseason buzz.
Indianapolis Colts ($2,700) – Matthew Stafford has come a long way as a QB, but he can still be careless, and the Colts are at home with Vegas behind them as a favorite. With the Lions putting the offense in the air, it increases the chance for sacks and INTs.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jaywalker72) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.