Week 5 DFS Cheat Sheet: UPDATED
October 5, 2014 | Chet
Welcome to Week 5 of The Fake Football DFS Cheat Sheet!
With the help of our resident DFS Guru Rich Hribar, Ian Goldsmith and myself, we have put together a comprehensive NFL DFS Cheat Sheet with matchup stats, analysis, picks, sample lineups and lineup configuration advice. We have picks for FanDuel, Draftkings, Fantasy Elite and Draftday, and with their differing settings, the picks, stats and analysis will help you on even more sites than just those four. And with a week between games we will update our picks and analysis as the week progresses. You will receive your Cheat Sheet on Wednesday, in time for the Thursday night games and then we will update the sheet on Sunday Mornings to make sure you don’t miss any breaking news.
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Sample FanDuel Lineups(by Rich Hribar)
FanDuel Lineup Configurations
This week I’ll be centering my lineups around Rashad Jennings since he’s the biggest screaming value this week. Drew Brees has a favorable game this week, but there are just too many mid-level quarterbacks that are great plays this weekend, with my favorite two being Eli Manning and Ben Roethlisberger. Going for Eli on Thursday allows me to fit in Jordy Nelson as my WR1 and I can still surround Jennings with an elite RB1 in Le’Veon Bell. With those three as my anchors, I feel really good about this lineup providing a solid safety net of production. The elite tight ends are in play this weekend as well, but just like quarterback, there’s an abundance of cheaper options that are highly viable. If you want, you can also swap out Bell and Michael Floyd for DeMarco Murray and Brian Quick if you really want Murray this weekend.
Sunday Cash Lineup
This is going to look very similar to the Thursday lineup, but since we won’t be able to use Jordy Nelson, I’m going with Benjamin and upgrading to Roethlisberger is my favorite course of action. Doing so daves the extra cash to bump up to Murray. You can go down to Owen Daniels or Garrett Graham if you want to free up cap space for a kicker or wide receiver upgrade such as Alshon Jeffery or Victor Cruz.
I’m a sucker for Blake Bortles this weekend and his low salary allows potential big swings at lead running back and receiver. Calvin Johnson was used primarily as a decoy this past week, but he’s back at home and has a cherry on top matchup versus the Bills. Alshon Jeffery and Rueben Randle are more tournament swings that could each score and Jordan Cameron is potentially the cheapest he’ll ever be again this season. I’d like to use him cash games, but since he’s coming off the injury and has yet to be involved, he’s best saved for tournament upside. Detroit DST will be in all of my lineups this week no matter the format.
Sunday Early Only
The majority of guys I really like this weekend play early games, so fielding a lineup was no trouble at all. You can go cheaper at quarterback, but with no early only tournaments, I like having the comfort of Drew Brees as my anchor with DeMarco Murray and Rashad Jennings (who may break ownership records today). The rest of this lineup is filled out with some of my favorites mentioned in the cheat sheet and Victor Cruz, who should be involved since the Atlanta defense is vulnerable in the middle of the field defending the run and pass.
Sample DraftDay Lineups (by Chet Gresham)
DraftDay Lineup Configurations
My staples here are Rivers, Roehtlisberger, Jennings, Forsett, Quick and the Saints. Rivers has just been unbelievably good this season and gets a Jets team that stops the run, but not the pass. The Chargers have lost the ability to run with Mathews and Woodhead out, so will need to pass, even if the Jets can’t score. Roethlisberger gets a Jags team that can’t seem to stop anybody (except the Chargers rush) and the Steelers are very much a passing team now. I wish I could afford Antonio Brown. Jennings takes on a Falcons team that was just obliterated by Aaiata and McKinnon on the ground. Jennings is the every down back and will get receptions and goal line looks. Le’Veon Bell is one of the best players in the league right now and is facing one of the worst offenses. He can get it done in a multitude of ways and I think he gets out of his TD slump. Andre Johnson’s usage and price are too good and he has been getting red zone looks, just not getting that coveted TD. I think he can break that trend this week. ASJ’s price is too good with Mike Evans out. I think the Bucs are going to have to throw it a lot in this one and he’ll see his targets. I agree with Rich whole heartedly about Forsett. The Ravens see him as their best runner right now and he’s also their best pass catching back. I think the Colts will be able to score on the Ravens and get them in hurry up, which will be prime time for Forsett. Ben Tate is probably my riskiest pick, but he’s practicing and set to get the start. The Titans have given up 5 rushing TDs and one receiving TD to running backs this season. If Trent Richardson can get one why can’t Tate! Travis Kelce’s price is still nice and we saw how well they used him against the Patriots. Tight ends are hard to project each week, so unless I’m going with Graham I like my TEs to be top 3 on their team in targets, be cheap and have upside, and Kelce has all those. The Bucs are giving up a 75% completion rate to WRs and the second most fantasy points in the league. Cooks has dropped in price and I think Brees gets back on track at home in this one. Reggie Bush is in both my cash and tourney lineup because I think he’s safe against the Bills who are giving up seven receptions per game to running backs. They’ve been tough on runners between the tackles, but Matt Forte caught 8 passes for 87 yards. A hobbled Arian Foster caught 7 for 55 yards last week and Donald Brown, who has de-evolved into a slug, caught5 for 27 yards. Since DD gives us a point for every reception I’m thinking Bush’s floor is around 7 receptions and whatever else he tacks on to that. But the even bigger upside for him will be if Joique Bell can’t play due to his concussion. That would make him almost a must start.
Brees is a bit too expensive for me, but in a tourney I love his ceiling against the Bucs. a 4 TD game is nowhere out of the question. Blake Bortles, as Rich said, has his legs to give him a decent floor, plus he’ll most likely need to keep scoring as his defense will have trouble against the Steelers. LeSean McCoy is going to bust out at some point and I think this might be the week. His price has falles and the Rams front isn’t as imposing as we thought coming into the season. Percy Harvin is a boom or bust play and has a decent amount of potential for booming against Washington, who is giving up the 4th most yards to wide receivers. Malcom Floyd isn’t my usual DraftDay kind of pick since his receptions aren’t numerous, but the Jets are ranked 29th against #2 and #3 receivers according to Football Outsiders and Floyd’s price is still quite low.
Cash Lineup 2: Update: I still like Seferian-Jenkins and Andre Johnson, but I’m worried about Ben Tate after he said he wasn’t feeling 100%. So I had to move things around a bit and bring in Bishop Sankey, Marques Colston, and Garrett Graham. Sankey is the riskiest of those, but his price, matchup and his coach saying he will get more work, gets me on board. Graham has a great matchup against Dallas who has been getting absolutely scorched by tight ends this season and Colston takes on a Tampa Bay team who ranks 31st against #1 receivers according to Football Outsiders and last in fantasy points allowed to opposing WRs.
Cash Lineup 3: We have some of our Week 5 usual suspects here like Roethlisberger, Bush, Jennings, Forsett and the Saints, but I added a few plays I like as safe plays this weekend. Eli Manning and “safe” are in no way synonymous, but the way he has been playing in this new quick hitting offense has been great and we’ve seen how well the Falcons have been playing defense lately. The only team to allow more total yards per game has been the Jaguars. I’m really liking Wheaton and Miller this week. The Jags can’t stop anyone, but after Antonio Brown has caught four TDs in the last two weeks they will need to do their best to slow him down and let Wheaton and Miller beat them. Keenan Allen broke out last week, but still hasn’t found the end zone. I think that happens this week as Rivers has once again found the connection with his best receiver. The Falcons have been bad on defense like I mentioned, but #2 receivers have really been a problem for them as Cooks, Sanu, Evans and Wright all had quality games against them.
Tourney Lineup 2: So I went crazy contrarian with this lineup and I have to say, it is crazy. But I of course like the picks (I made them!) and I could see this lineup making some noise. For tourneys I like to go cheap at QB and RB and stack up on high upside, lower floor receivers. Davis and Glennon have an extremely wide range of outcomes this weekend, but they also have nice matchups that also should score against them and keep them in pass mode. Forsett and Sankey are my value plays at RB across the board, so I’m happy with them. Harvin and Hopkins have nice matchups and tons of ability with a large role on their team. Thomas is my number 2 TE this week and easily could be the #1 scorer against the Cardinals weak TE defense. Marshall’s price has dropped just a tad and he practiced in full this week. His ankle should keep others from playing him and I like that. Carolina has given up big games to Antonio Brown and Steve Smith the past two weeks and their tough D on TEs should keep Cutler from targeting Bennett as much. Allen’s price hasn’t caught up with his ability and a TD is coming. The Giants have a top 10 pass rush and the Falcons are losing offensive lineman at about 6 per game.
Sample Draftkings Lineups (by Ian Goldsmith)
Draftkings Lineup Configurations
So, this week presents an excellent opportunity to exploit value on DraftKings. Lineups were released earlier than usual this week, which I think is because they wanted extra time to promote their $2.2 Million dollar tournament this week ($1 Million guaranteed to the winner). Because of this, players like Kelvin Benjamin, Steve Smith, Golden Tate and countless others have not seen their salaries rise to levels commiserate with their play. There are value plays everywhere, it is your job to find which ones you like best. I’m here to help.
I’m starting a bulk of my teams with some cheap options at RB this week. Chris Ivory leads the way. Ivory has been a steady hand in the mess that is the Jets’ offense. He has scored at least 11.7 FP each week on DraftKings. His price mysteriously dropped from $5300 to only $3100. Whether this is a mistake or not on the part of DK, you need to start him this week. San Diego has held their own against RBs, but have struggled to contain backs who can catch the ball. Ivory is still splitting carries, but he is clearly the top option for the Jets. If Vick gets the start over Geno Smith (no indication yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the switch happens soon), then Ivory should have even more room in which to operate. The other RB option here is Rashad Jennings. He is my DK value play of the week and will be on almost every single one of my lineups.
At WR, Antonio Brown is as close as you can get to must-own. With a matchup against Jacksonville looming, I don’t see how you can leave him off of your team. He is the clear #1 option for Big Ben and the matchup could not be any more favorable. I won’t tell you twice to start him. Steve Smith is basically a must start as well, especially in cash games. He is simply too involved in Kubiak’s offense at this point. He is Flacco’s go-to WR. I’m blown away that his price has only risen to $6000. It makes no sense. Take advantage.
Blake Bortles had a good showing this week against San Diego as he completed over 78% of his passes, which is simply astounding for a player in his first career start. His price dropped $600 to $5200, which puts him just above minimum salary. One of the reasons he was so efficient was because he was able to find his new tight end, Clay Harbor, who had 8 catches and 69 yards. Harbor is still listed at the TE minimum of $3000. For a combined $8200, you have a pair of players who could easily reach 30 combined points. Pittsburgh’s pass defense is exploitable as Glennon and TB showed this week. This is a tournament pairing, but one that could pay off and at the same time enable you to afford studs like the aforementioned Antonio Brown.
Top Three Thursday Targets
- Jordy Nelson: $7900 – You almost have to play Nelson on your Thursday teams. He is that good.
- Randall Cobb: $6900 – The Vikings will have to pick their poison. I say both Packers’ WRs score.
- Matt Asiata: $4700 – Will not get 3 TDs again, but could easily get 1. Packers’ run D is awful.
Top Two Breakout Candidates
- Drew Brees: $8900
- Brian Quick: $5900
I know, you are wondering why a guy like Brees is on this list. Simply put, he has not been himself so far this season. Do you know the last time Brees has gone four weeks in a row in a season without throwing for at least 3 TDs? 2009!!! Brees is due and what better way for him to get out of a slump (for him) than a matchup against Tampa Bay at home? Brees and the Saints were just embarrassed on national television. He is going to be pissed. 350+ yards and 4+ TDs is well within the realm of possibility.
Brian Quick went from off of most people’s radars to a weekly start in PPR leagues quite quickly. He is the most reliable option in the passing game in St. Louis, bar none. He gets a dream matchup this week against an Eagles’ secondary that is simply overmatched by anybody that can throw a ball. Hell, I think that if my O-Line protection were good enough, I could throw for over 200 yards on them (I pitched on my Little League team, which obviously translates into NFL QB arm strength). Quick is clearly a tournament option as there are more reliable, cheaper options this week (See Kelvin Benjamin and Golden Tate), but given the matchup, I like Quick’s chances to get behind the defense and score on a long play or two.
Top DK Value Play of the Week
Rashad Jennings: $5500
Atlanta has been gashed by opposing RBs all season long, especially by backs that are able to catch the ball. New York has finally bought into Ben McAdoo’s new offensive scheme and the offense is humming. Eli Manning has been lights out since a poor Week 1. He is getting rid of the ball quickly and has been highly accurate. His electric passing is forcing teams to drop more players into coverage, leaving holes for Jennings (and Andre Williams) to exploit. An Atlanta defense that is already pathetic against the run will have no chance to stop the Giants’ running game. RJ hits value easily this week and has 30 FP upside.
Sunday Afternoon Tournament
With five games – including Monday night’s tilt – the afternoon slate offers quite a bit of variety this week. There will be a lot of temptation to play Manning off the break, but why shell out top dollar when you can have the QB with the second highest passer rating in the league, Philip Rivers, for over $2000 cheaper? The Jets do not have the personnel to stop Rivers’ passing attack. They have been good against #1 WRs, however, so if you plan on pairing Rivers with a WR than I suggest Eddie Royal or even Malcom Floyd, who is only $3000. Some big names can be had for relatively cheap here, so the right combination will determine the winners of late-Sunday tourneys. Peyton is always aware of distributing the love. I think that DT gets out of his ‘slump’ and has a big game against Arizona. Kelce is rock bottom and allows for bigger name players. If you don’t want to go Kelce (he doesn’t have an ideal matchup against SF), then consider the aforementioned Malcom Floyd for bare minimum. I love Giovani against the Patriots and utilizing him with Hill could be a big boon. The Pats had no answer for the dual-headed RB in KC and shouldn’t be able to stop Cincy’s RBs either.
Top Afternoon Value Plays
Jeremy Hill: $3000 – Cincy at NE
Travis Kelce: $3000 – KC at SF
Malcom Floyd: $3000 – San Diego v. NY Jets
For a $27 entry, DraftKings is offering you the chance at a cool million in their Millionaire Maker tournament, a 92,400 entry tournament. Making an effective lineup for this tournament is no small feat. You are playing against people who have hundreds of entries. At last count, I saw one person with 727 entries. Yikes. Fortunately for you, there are literally trillions of possible combinations of players. Realistically, this number is much smaller as the people with multiple entries have put in a lot of research. To win this type of tournament requires tremendous research and plenty of luck. There is so much value (perhaps too much) this week, that going against the grain will be easy. Some off the radar picks I like are Clay Harbor and Andrew Hawkins, who has quietly had at least 6 receptions per game for the Browns. At only $3500, he is a steal. You want upside across the board this week. Don’t be afraid to go with names that you see nobody else recommending. It will probably take at least 225 KD FP to win the big tournament (likely closer to 250), so if you are going to enter this potential life-changing tournament, be ready to be riskier than usual. I’ve provided one of my five entries into the tournament. Copy it if you want. I don’t mind splitting first place. GOOD LUCK!!!
Fantasy Elite Drafting Ranks
10/5 Prime: I love Rivers this week and with no must have cheap plays I’m ready to grab him early. Drew Stanton is scary to say the least, but at 5k I think he’s worth it. He has great receivers and will need to throw a bunch. Julius Thomas has a ton of upside and his price is reasonable. Cost saving picks besides Stanton will be Ivory, Royal, Kerley and Hill.
10/5 AM: I can’t get away from Austin Davis here. His price is just too good. If you can grab him first you are set up pretty well to make a strong lineup. Rashad Jennings, DeMarco Murray and Jimmy Graham all come into play with him as your starter. I love Drew Brees, but his price is a bit high. If you go cheap with Davis, Garrett Graham and Louis Murphy, Brees is very much in play.
A very simple, but good start to DFS research is to look at the over/unders and odds. Obviously you want your players in games where Vegas believes the game will be high scoring and on winning teams, while your defenses should come from games they believe will be low scoring.
If the Matchup Machine isn’t sortable for you, here are the same stats in Excel that are sortable: Week 5 Sortable Matchup Stats
Sortable Matchup Machine Quarterbacks
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Quarterback for the week.
Sortable Matchup Machine Running Backs
Here you will find the matchup stats for each running back for the week.
|DEP||Running Backs||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPts||Att||Yds||YPC||RuTD||Rec||Target||Yds||RecTD||Tot Yds||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||PFF||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Wide Receivers
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Wide Receiver for the week.
|DEP||Wide Receivers||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPt||Rec||Target||Com%||Yds||TD||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||PFF||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Tight Ends
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Tight End for the week.
|DEP||Tight Ends||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPt||Rec||Target||Com%||Yds||TD||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Defenses
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Defense for the week.
|Defense||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPts||Sack||Int||Fum Rec||Pts Allow||FP/%DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
|New England Patriots||IND||$3,200||$8,650||$4,900||7||1.8||1||0.9||27.9||2.188||0.809||1.429|
|Green Bay Packers||@SEA||$2,900||$8,400||$4,700||5.3||2.6||0.4||0.4||23.8||1.828||0.631||1.128|
Sortable Matchup Machine Kickers
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Kicker for the week.