It’s here! The $2.2M Millionaire Maker is finally here on DraftKings, and someone is going to become an instant millionaire in Week 5 off of a $27 entry. What an incredible time to be involved with daily fantasy sports.
If you want to have a chance at walking out of Week 5 with a seven-figure cash, you absolutely need to hit on your quarterback. The winner of this tournament might be able to slide by without hitting on the top defense or both of the top running backs, but you could make an argument that quarterback is going to be the most crucial spot to hit (especially since there’s a good chance the winner will have a quarterback stacked with at least one of his receivers).
With that said, let’s take a look at the Week 5 quarterbacks who are eligible for use in the Millionaire Maker.
Top Five Quarterbacks
Peyton Manning, Denver vs Arizona, $9200 – Manning coming off of Denver’s bye week is a scary proposition. Facing Patrick Peterson will probably hurt Demaryius Thomas, but I don’t think it hinders Manning all that much. He’ll simply go elsewhere with the football, and he has plenty of weapons to utilize at home against the Cards.
The question for the Millionaire Maker is how heavily Manning will be utilized given that there are a number of nice matchups for top five quarterbacks. Each of the following four passers are within $700 of Manning, and most have really favorable matchups and/or prices.
Drew Brees, Tampa Bay at New Orleans, $8900 – This just feels like the type of game in which Brees is going to explode. He’s back at home, and a lot has been made of his home/road splits. He really does seem to be a different player at home on the turf, but that’s become such common knowledge that I think you’re going to see Brees overused.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see 20 percent usage in Week 5, which could drive down his usable value. Certainly this is one hell of a matchup and good value, but if you fade Brees and he doesn’t return value, you’re going to have a nice leg up on the field.
Matthew Stafford, Detroit vs Buffalo, $8800 – This could be a week in which we see Stafford get overlooked. He’s more expensive than Andrew Luck, which is surprising, and he hasn’t really been dominant since Week 1.
Stafford is always a good stack with Megatron, though, who is only $100 more expensive than Antonio Brown. It’s not like you’re going to see minimal usage on this pairing in Week 5, but you could make the argument that they’re going to be far less popular than Brees-to-Graham.
Andrew Luck, Indianapolis vs Baltimore, $8700 – We have a really interesting dilemma with fantasy football’s No. 1 quarterback this week. Luck is absolutely crushing it in 2014, but he faces a Ravens defense that has allowed the fourth-fewest points to opposing passers this season.
It looks like Luck is still very much a good value as just the fourth-priciest quarterback despite averaging nearly seven points more than every other quarterback in the league. However, note that he’s really just $500 cheaper than Manning, so this will basically just come down to who you think is the best option in Week 5, regardless of price.
Nick Foles, Philadelphia vs St. Louis, $8500 – Of the top five quarterbacks, Foles might be the most underrated of the bunch. He hasn’t been impressive in 2014 and he’s coming off of a horrific performance in San Francisco in Week 4. All of the weapons are there for Foles to explode in Week 5, however, and the fact that he’s priced in the top tier could drive down usage.
My only problem with Foles is figuring out who you need to pair with him, but it appears as though Jeremy Maclin is becoming that guy in Philly.
Five Mid-Priced Quarterbacks
Jay Cutler, Chicago at Carolina, $7700 – Cutler appears to have a quality matchup against the Panthers-a team that just got torched by the Ravens through the air. A lot of those yards and scores came from really fluky plays, however, and Carolina was really good in the first three games of the season.
This is an example of one outlier game perhaps throwing off overall stats early in the year. In the first three weeks of the season, the Panthers allowed fewer than 200 passing yards twice and 253 yards to the explosive Detroit Lions. With Brandon Marshall appearing unhealthy, I think this might be a situation to avoid.
Russell Wilson, Seattle at Washington, $7600 – The Redskins defense looked formidable right out of the gate in 2014, but they also played the Jags and Texans. After facing the Eagles and Giants over the past two weeks, Washington has come back to Earth, allowing well over 600 passing yards in those games.
I love Wilson as a high-efficiency play in just about any game, but this is yet another contest in which he’s unlikely to see enough attempts to give you a truly elite ceiling. Wilson is probably a nice play in cash games, but I don’t like him much as a GPP play given that he hasn’t thrown more than 34 passes in a game all year.
Eli Manning, NY Giants vs Atlanta, $7500 – Even though the Falcons D is horrific, I think Manning’s price jumped too much for Week 5. He’s currently priced $200 cheaper than Jay Cutler and $500 higher than both Tony Romo and Philip Rivers. The Manning-to-Donnell tandem looks enticing and maybe there’s merit to playing it in the Millionaire Maker, but I don’t like Manning at all in cash games.
Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh at Jacksonville, $7400 – You have the league’s worst pass defense, by far, facing a relatively streaky quarterback coming off of his biggest game of the year. I actually like Roethlisberger more in cash games than tournaments because his upside might be capped, but Antonio Brown is very much in play everywhere.
Cam Newton, Carolina vs Chicago, $7200 – The Bears have allowed the sixth-most points to opposing quarterbacks this year. Newton hasn’t been good with only 15.1 fantasy points per game, but he also hasn’t been forced to air it out much. This is the sort of game in which he might be asked to do that. We should also see a season-high in rushing yards for Newton, who hasn’t topped 19 all year.
Five Value Quarterbacks
Philip Rivers, San Diego vs NY Jets, $7000 – Even with the top-tier passers in favorable matchups, it seems like Rivers is the favorite to be the most popular quarterback on DraftKings this week. You can easily pair him with Keenan Allen, who finally broke out in Week 4, and the cost here-$2200 cheaper than Peyton Manning against the horrific Jets pass defense-is really attractive.
This is a situation I’d at least consider moving away from in the majority of lineups due to how heavily utilized Rivers might be.
Tony Romo, Dallas vs Houston, $7000 – Houston’s pass defense has been the sixth-stingiest in the NFL to opposing quarterbacks, but Romo seems a tad underpriced here. The positive is that he seems to be getting healthy. The negative is that with Dallas running the ball so much, Romo’s upside is capped. Because of that and the risk, Romo is tough to justify in both cash games and GPP lineups, even though he might be undervalued in terms of his median projection.
Geno Smith, NY Jets at San Diego, $6700 – Searching for the ultimate contrarian play? You found it. Geno Smith is such a contrarian option that he might not even play this week. Beat that.
So what’s to like here? Smith should see a big workload in San Diego if he plays. He should have Eric Decker healthy. He’s also going to be extremely low usage. This is by no means an option in cash games because Smith could very well get pulled even if he starts, but it wouldn’t totally shock me to see this sort of player be on the winning Millionaire Maker team just because no one else has him.
Kirk Cousins, Washington vs Seattle, $6500 – Cousins could be in play for no other reason than his priced dropped so much and he’s going to be an unpopular play versus Seattle. The Seahawks have actually allowed the ninth-most points to opposing passers this year, although that’s admittedly a little deceiving since they’ve faced Denver, San Diego, and Green Bay.
Mike Glennon, Tampa Bay at New Orleans, $5500 – Of the really cheap passers in Week 5, Glennon might be my favorite. He threw the ball 42 times last week against the Steelers and found each of his big receivers in the end zone for touchdowns.
Glennon will face a Saints defense that has gotten lit up lately via the air. Most important, the price tag is so cheap that you can do a whole lot of creative stuff if you utilize a Glennon/Jackson stack this week.