Things I Like in Week 4:
MLB Regular season almost being over
A crazy college football slate
Things I Don’t Like All That Much Thank You in Week 4:
Great baseball players getting injured in a meaningless game
MLB Regular season almost being over
Value plays, as we’ve mentioned before, come in all shapes and sizes, but the injury bug is the one that promotes the biggest values. You’ll certainly see some of this in Week 4, as Ben Roethlisberger is definitely out and Davante Adams, Marshawn Lynch and LeSean McCoy are all players that might miss time.
All injury situations are not created equal, however. Just because someone slides into that slot doesn’t mean you automagically assign 80% of the starter’s DK point total over to him. Racing to roster a 3-4K player only because a starter got hurt isn’t the recipe to finding the cash line.
Opportunity is important, but understanding the situation is equally as valuable. I didn’t see any Bucs receivers getting 80% of Mike Evans’ volume when he was out. Instead, the Bucs spread the love around to ASJ and Jackson in his place. When Adrian Peterson was out last season, the Asiata/McKinnon plan went into effect in Minnesota, and so on. I’ll list injury replacements in here, but it’s only when the situation still seems right.
Anyway, on to Week Four while I try to put Nick Foles out of my life forever…Contact me @JasonWalker_72 with any other value questions through the rest of Week 3. Good luck!
Derek Carr ($5,300) – Carr plays woebegone Chicago this week and the Raiders are enjoying a modest 24 point team score. The Raiders continue to pass, launching the eighth most passes per game and the Bears have two of the top four worst corners going and three of the worst 14, per PFF.
Michael Vick ($5,000) – Full disclosure: I have long loved Michael Vick. I was in Atlanta when he started his career and have always liked his fantasy scoring abilities no matter where he is playing. So, I may be a bit biased when I see him at QB min pricing and starting with all the Steelers weaponry at his disposal. Also, he gets the most QB friendly fantasy defense in the Ravens, in Pittsburgh, from which to ease his way into the fray. He won’t need much to make good on 5K, even with the modest Vegas numbers at his back and I will have some Vick this week. It’s fun!
Ryan Mallett ($5,000) – The Texans continue to run a lot of plays, with over 80 per game and are #1 in passes per game with 48. Mallett plays the Falcons who are a net positive to the QB position and fifth worst in pass coverage. Mallett has not been great or efficient but the opportunity and price combined make him excellent value.
Karlos Williams ($3,400) – The next two guys you have to watch the injury report status to make sure they rise up from understudy status to starring role, but Karlos Williams has already shown himself to be a solid runner so far this season and if Shady McCoy needs to rest, Williams is in a good position against the Giants to grab the volume to go along with his early season excellence. The Bills have a decent implied game total at 25.8 and game script says the Bills will have a lead. Volume + game script + sixth most efficient RB so far this season + 3.4K price tag = a highly owned value RB this week.
Thomas Rawls ($3,000) – The second of our injury replacements at tailback, Rawls was the surprise back who emerged after Marshawn Lynch couldn’t and didn’t need to go far against the Bears. Fred Jackson (also 3K this week) did well, too, but it was Rawls that got the 18 carry/109 yard volume. The caveat is that the Seahawks play Monday night, giving Lynch enough time to get right and Jackson may be the one who starts against Detroit anyway if Lynch can’t go. The Lions are a tough RB matchup, but the price is right if either Rawls/Jackson gets the start.
Duke Johnson ($3,100) – Duke has not been great so far this season, nor have the Browns played him on more than half the team’s offensive snaps this year. But last week Johnson got involved in the passing game, getting six targets, San Diego is one of the league’s early worst defenses and the spread indicates the Browns will be trailing, forcing Duke back into the passing game. He’s not a favorite play, but could provide solid value at 3.1K.
Lance Dunbar ($3,600) – My weekly Lance Dunbar entry. It’s fun not deleting him from the template here. Dunbar delivered for us last week, catching all ten (10!) targets for 100 yards and scoring 23.5 DK points. That’s sweet stuff for his sub 4K price tag. This week, it’s the Saints who are hurting defensively, especially in pass coverage. Brandon Weeden is still going to be checking down and Dunbar will be there to soak up the targets and giving us value.
Ty Montgomery ($3,000) – Montgomery looks to be standing in for Davante Adams if he can’t go Week 4 and while Randall Cobb and James Jones are ahead in the pecking order of Packers wide receivers, any WR of Aaron Rodgers is a friend of mine. All three WR slots play every down, so Montgomery will be in the mix. With a week of first team practices with Rodgers, a team total of 28 and the wobbly 49ers defense, Montgomery is in a good spot and won’t need much to clear the 3K hurdle.
Allen Hurns ($3,700) – Now begins our three sequels from last week at WR, starting with Hurns, who we liked last week and like once more in Week 4. The game script this week for Jacksonville against Indianapolis, as it was against the Patriots last week and, honestly, likely will be most of the season, is for the Jags to have to pass. The Colts will likely use Vontae Davis to shadow Allen Robinson, leaving Hurns to capitalize, like all non-Davis targets have this season, at his modest price tag.
Cecil Shorts ($3,500) – More passes, more targets. Shorts got his nine targets last week even with Hopkins playing and should do the same this week in Atlanta. the Falcons have Philip Adams over the slot and he’s gotten beat on 9 of 11 targets so far this season. With the Texans likely trailing here and their tendency to pass, pass, pass well established, it bodes well for another target saturated day for Shorts.
Ted Ginn, Jr. ($3,400) – The last of our three from last week, Ginn delivered against the Saints for a 4/93 game on six targets. The result is that his price went up only $100, so he’s still solidly on the value radar. The team and game totals are not good in this one, but Ginn is getting solid secondary target volume for the Panthers (behind Greg Olsen) and his big play abilities make him a solid GPP value target. The Bucs are not good defensively this season so while the volume may not be as high due to game script, Newton is looking for Ginn (28 targets in four games) which could mean an interesting tourney combination here.
Marvin Jones ($3,800) – He’s back as the solid second receiver to A.J. Green, Jones got eight targets, 94 yards and a score last week against the Ravens. This week, it’s Kansas City, who is seventh worst in pass coverage so far this season. The Bengals want to run, so the game script could work against Jones here, but the Chiefs are third best in that area, so it may be up to the passing game to make it happen, bringing Jones back into view as a value play.
Owen Daniels ($2,800) – Daniels is firmly in the second group of TEs in targets this season and the Broncos are passing the fourth most in the league, despite the Gary Kubiak effect. Nine targets last week against the Lions and this week it’s the Vikings, who might make the game close enough to keep the passes coming.
Maxx Williams ($2,500) – What a name! Have to put him on the list for that alone, well, along with his 2.5K price tag, a plus matchup against the Steelers, the injuries which forced seven targets to Maxx against the Bengals in Week 3 and so on. The Ravens will likely be in the same position as last week, meaning Joe Flacco will once again be looking to his TE for help, and Maxx is the next TE up for the Ravens.
Larry Donnell (2,900) – I still have a soft spot for Donnell, who, like Daniels, is firmly in the second group of TE for targets. Buffalo is tough on TE, but the way to beat the Bills is through the air, and Donnell’s price has dipped below 3K while maintaining the same place in the Giants passing game which is a great indicator for value.
Green Bay Packers (2,700) – Falling behind makes teams do crazy things with the ball, and the 49ers should fall behind quickly to the Packers, leading to more passes, more sacks and more INT. The game total is high, but that’s mostly Green Bay and you can still rack up the DEF points with the sacks, INTs anyway.
Philadelphia Eagles ($2,700) – Eagles defense gets Washington this week, who provides the biggest weekly boost to fantasy defenses so far this season. The Eagles have great value at their 2.7K tag against a Washington offense that is the fourth worst in the league, per PFF.