Things That Worked in Week 4:
Our repeat WRs! (Ted Ginn, Cecil Shorts, Allen Hurns)
The Chalk: Karlos Williams
Things That Didn’t Work in Week 4:
All of the tight ends…(grrrrrr, Donnell)
Marvin Jones — the dance of the second Bengals WR goes on….
For obvious reasons every temptation has another name. Last week, I was tempted to dip back into my favorite wide receiver value plays, and scratching that itch was worthwhile! Can you find out what itch I scratched this week? If you read last week’s piece and this week’s it’ll be pretty obvious.
Also, this week it’ll be hard to be tempted by the low cost RB. Karlos Williams and Duke Johnson saw their prices skyrocket and our favorite, Lance Dunbar, is out for the season leaving us looking at the very low 4K backs to get some value.
Anyway, on to Week Five while I throw a dart at this week’s Tight End picks…Contact me @JasonWalker_72 with any other value questions through the rest of Week 3. Good luck!
Jay Cutler ($5,300) – Did you hear the one about the Chiefs being extra generous to opposing QBs? They are dead last against opposing QBs and Cutler may get Alshon Jeffery back this week, in time to face a Chiefs defense which is also the league’s worst against WR. The Bears are deep dogs in Arrowhead, so the pass is definitely in play for the Bears.
Alex Smith ($5,500) – Smith gets the super-leaky Bears defensive backfield at home. Game script works against him here (Chiefs are -10 faves), but the Chiefs defense is the worst against opposing QBs, so it may not be a run away and hide game for KC, keeping Smith in play.
Michael Vick ($5,100) – Near minimum against a bad San Diego defense. Le’Veon Bell is going to get his 25 touches in this one, but some of those will come off the short passing arm of Vick, who also gets to unload the deep ball to Martavis Bryant this week.
Todd Gurley ($4,300) – Last chance to roster him for less than 6K! Gurley emerged in the second half last week, recalling the ball hogging Rams days of Stephen Jackson under Jeff Fisher. Gurley has folks talking about he and Fisher like the old Titans days of Eddie George, and I can certainly see Gurley getting a ton of touches, even in a game in Green Bay. The Packers are fourth worst against opposing RBs in fantasy and second worst run defense overall by Football Outsiders. Play. Todd. Gurley.
Anthony “Boobie” Dixon ($3,000) – Dixon is not a great RB, but a lot of this is about opportunity, and with LeSean McCoy and Karlos Williams looking sketchy for participation, it will fall on Dixon to take on the volume. At 3K, with 15 touches against a Titans rush defense that FO ranks as the worst in the league and the Bills as slight favorites, that’s a good value.
C.J. Spiller ($3,800) – It’s happening, y’all. Sure, Spiller was almost an afterthought for the Saints in Week 4 before the overtime, Drew Brees magic sideline toss set CJ free for an 80 yard touchdown, but what that showed was two things: 1. Spiller still has the breakaway wheels. 2. The Saints, who lack a lot of guys with those wheels, need more Spiller. The Saints are road dogs and Brees won’t have the home dome to help with his ailing shoulder, but he will have Spiller and use him more.
Chris Thompson ($3,000) – The Falcons are strong favorites in this game (-7.5) and are both 27th defending RBs as receivers and among four teams giving up more than 10 RB targets per game (Jaguars, Panthers, Giants) so the script is set for Thompson, who has forced his way into the Washington RB quagmire with Alfred Morris and Matt Jones. Thompson has played the second most RB snaps in WAS and has the most over the last two weeks (Thompson 72, Morris 47, Jones 41) and the Falcons have been worst, fantasy wise, against the RB position.
Kamar Aiken ($3,800) – Reliant on whether Steve Smith plays and a tourney play only, Aiken had a strong fill-in game in Week 4 with seven targets, 77 yards and a TD. The Ravens have the Browns, who are 27th against the pass and the Ravens are targeted for 25 points in this game. If Smith is out again, Aiken is in line for another solid week for less than 4K.
Willie Snead ($3,000) – Snead has quietly become the receiver we thought Brandon Coleman was going to be in New Orleans. Snead has moved into the #2 role at WR, playing more snaps than even Marques Colston over the past two weeks. Snead is still min WR priced in a game where the Saints are underdogs and the game total is the highest of the week.
Cole Beasley ($3,100) – The Cowboys have lost everybody, including our favorite man, Lance Dunbar. Beasley is the most likely to fill the targets that Dunbar was getting and the Patriots are bottom ten against all the WR slots. The Cowboys may want to slow games down, but with the mounting injuries, the ineffectiveness at RB and the Patriots offense involved, they may have no choice but to air it out.
Keith Mumphrey ($3,000) – We have said many times in this space that the Texans: A. Run the most plays from scrimmage and B. Throw the most passes. Well, they are up to over 50 passes per game, meaning that even with Hopkins getting 20 there are 30 more to be distributed. Our usual suspect, Cecil Shorts, is out for Week 5 and Nate Washington, who has been next in line, is banged up, too, leaving Mumphrey as the next man up for the Texans. They play the Colts, who are likely without Vontae Davis, which means that the Colts are even thinner than their 22nd ranked pass defense was before.
Roddy White ($3,500) – Squeaky Wheel Game! I am probably on an island here, but White did complain this week about getting the ball, Washington is bottom ten against #2 WR (per FO) and the Falcons will likely pass against a WAS defense that is seventh best against the run. A guy like White at 3.5K could be fool’s gold, but I am feeling a solid activity game here to keep him happy and it’s a good game to do it. I will have him in a tourney lineup to get some of the high priced guys in good spots in my lineup.
Owen Daniels ($2,700) – Easy choice to repeat in this slot. Oakland defense vs. TE has yielded the most yards per game. Daniels can’t run anymore, but he’s a solid target draw for Manning, getting at least five per game. Given that Oakland has given up just a shade under 10 targets per game to tight ends, fourth most in the league, Daniels is in a good spot for a ridiculously low amount.
Zach Ertz ($2,900) – The Eagles passing game should start to get better as they hit more pass-friendly defenses. No pass defense has been worse than the Saints, who are also second worst against tight ends. Ertz has averaged five targets per game but could see more against a Saints team that, on average, sees seven TE targets per game.
Larry Donnell (2,900) – Why no, I won’t stop putting Donnell in this space. He’ll pay off, man, believe me! The Niners are 19th defensively against tight ends and Donnell is second on the Giants in targets with nearly six targets per game.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($2,500) – It’s a coin toss between the Bucs and the Jags, who play each other in what’s sure to be a game only their Florida mothers could love. Blake Bortles is better than Winston, who is currently the worst rated QB by FO. Still, the Bucs are a couple hundred less, so given the Bucs are also 2.5 point favorites in the lowest game total of the day, they get top billing here.
Jacksonville Jaguars ($2,700) – Which doesn’t mean the Jags can’t be a good play. With Winston struggling and turning it over a lot, if you have the extra $200 bucks, go with the Jags.