Week 1 of the TFA Contrary-Ten is the books and what a wild ride it was for DFS players. My plays weren’t all bad…if you played Brees, Riddick and AJ Green you were only 6 players off of the milli-maker lineup on Draftkings. My only problem was I was pretty much in on a “Naked Brees.” High-risk, high reward, but most that played Brees with Brandin Cooks and/or Willie Snead raked in decent cash flow from week 1. The beauty about Daily Fantasy is we can scrap that week and move on to the next. Unlike some of our season-long teams where we’re stuck with our players for better or worst (for the most part). Week 2 I’m looking for these plays to provide more success for our lineups and bankrolls. Let’s get into it!
Draftkings Price: $7500
Big Ben doesn’t have many stellar games vs. Cincinnati. In fact, he has only five fewer interceptions than touchdowns (30-25) in 24 career games against them. Last year these rivalry games were slugfests, especially the one in the playoffs. Roethlisberger is in what I call a narrative situation. Similar to the one last week versus Washington when many counted him out due to his road splits. He only had two touchdowns versus Cincinnati in three games last year. TWO. His star WR was knocked out of the playoffs because of a Vontaze Burfict hit that affected their run for a title. And let’s just be clear – these two teams hate each other. Hate is a strong word, but it’s fitting here. Roethlisberger is pumped for this game. I think the whole Steelers team has had circled on their schedule for awhile and I expect them to want to run the scoreboard up. All key players for the Steelers are in play, but especially Ben. Even if he can’t find AB (who will see around 15 targets), Wheaton is back, Eli Rogers showed promise, and DeAngelo Williams will be in the backfield.
This Steelers offense is doing just fine without Martavis Bryant and Le’Veon Bell. Cincinnati is dealing with injuries on the defensive side with Adam Jones and Darqueze Dennard battling back and ankle injuries. DT Pat Sims will probably miss the game and so will the aforementioned Burfict. The o/u is 48.5. Over the offseason Big Ben and OC Todd Haley talked how they wanted their offense to score 30 points a game. With that in mind, Ben is always in play for me especially in spots where I can get an edge over the field.
Draftkings Price: $7000
Get in now. I’ll say it one more time for good measure, get in now. After his matchup with Green Bay Sunday night, he faces the likes of the Panthers, Giants, and Texans in consecutive weeks. Philadelphia after that (we’ll know if their defense is for real after Monday night’s matchup with Chicago). This is, however, a juicy matchup for the best running back in the game. Peterson LOVES playing against Green Bay. Maybe that’s why in the past eight games against them he’s found the endzone. He see’s about 21 touches per game against them and has scored 14 total touchdowns in 16 games. He’ll definitely be under-owned considering he’s playing in the Sunday night game. Every player in that late game will be overlooked, and if I have to put one player exploding for a huge line, it’s Peterson. Sam Bradford will make his Vikings debut and I have to believe the Vikings have dumbed-down the playbook for him (i.e. hand the damn ball off to 28 and let him work). Even with CJ Anderson being $200 cheaper and DeAngelo Williams $100 more, I can’t see myself not having at least 10% exposure to Peterson.
Draftkings Price: $5700
Lat Murray was in a great position to make people a lot of money in Daily Fantasy last week going against the Saints in New Orleans in an expected shootout. He did score a touchdown, but only rushed the ball 14 times for under 60 yards. Whomp whomp. I think Murray bounces back in this spot versus Atlanta. The Falcons played a pretty solid game against the run containing Doug Martin, but this game they’re on the road and underdogs by 4.5 points. I like targeting running backs who are home favorites as stated above with Peterson. I’m not going to get bent out of shape by Jalen Richard’s fantasy breakout last week since it basically came off of that one 80-yard run. That could have easily been Murray and people would be singing his praises this week. In GPP’s take the savings and go with Murray who’s in position to get over 20 touches in this game.
Draftkings Price: $3800
I don’t have to tell you what you already know – this game has bonanza potential. There were 101 points between the two teams a year ago. Basically, if you faded this game (or OBJ who scored 3 TDs) you kissed your cash and GPP lineups goodnight. So, of course, most people are scared to fade this game the second time around. That’s not what I’m saying, but I will say this – this game is outdoors this time around. The game was indoors last year. Drew Brees is not the same quarterback outside of the Superdome. Keep an eye on the weather for this matchup here. Rain and 10 mph winds are in the forecast. I say all that to say I want players in this matchup, but maybe ones with low ownership, high upside. Enter Shane Vereen. He’s still getting targets (5) in the passing game even with all those receivers to feed. He also had a handful of touches in the RZ last week. At his price, I’ll take his 20 percent share of touches in a game with a projected over/under of 53.5!
Draftkings Price: $9200
Have we all forgotten how good this guy is? I mean, I haven’t heard anyone talking about him much at all this week and it baffles me. Yes, OBJ’s matchup is juicy and Antonio Brown is pretty much matchup-proof, but Julio led the NFL in receiving yards this year. He is Atlanta’s LONE CONSISTENT option. Emphasis on consistent. Matt Ryan knows he needs to feed the beast in order to win. This week they get an Oakland defense who just had their premiere cornerback benched a week ago (Hi, Sean Smith). I expect this Oakland and Atlanta game to be weird. I’ll probably never play Matt Ryan in daily, ever, but I can’t ignore the spot for Julio here. Last week everyone was on him and were disappointed he only returned 16.6 DK points while Sanu scored a touchdown along with 80 yards. The latter will not happen regularly and Julio is a fine pivot in GPPs off of OBJ and AB. You can bet Julio will see about 12-16 targets in this game and don’t be surprised if he hits pay dirt…twice.
Draftkings Price: $7800
Jason Verrett…Jason Verrett – that’s who’s expected to be on Allen Robinson this Sunday. Verrett is a great corner, don’t get me wrong. Sometimes even the great corners get burned (insert Darrelle Revis and Bashaud Breeland from week 1). Robinson has a 5-inch height advantage over Verrett so this play is moreso from a red zone standpoint. Robinson has two-touchdown potential in pretty much every game in my opinion. That’s how dominant of a receiver he is. Even though his week one stat line doesn’t look that appealing (6-72-0), he did see a league-high 15 targets. Bortles loves to target his 6’5″ receiver and in a game that I see being a shootout in San Diego look for Robinson to be heavily involved. On a site like Draftkings that’s PPR, Robinson makes a fine pivot off of the WRs price $8000 and above.
Draftkings Price: $7000
All offseason I was on the T.Y. Hilton train. I think week 2 is where people join me. Hilton was dealing with a nagging knee injury this week, but was a full participant in practice on Friday and is not listed on the injury report. This matchup in Denver will be ugly, but I believe that will be the case on both sides of the ball. Siemian is still finding his rhythm within the offense as he turned the ball over twice in his Denver debut. Luck is prone to turn the ball over as well, so there will be ample opportunities for both teams to score on short fields. Even if you expect Denver in a blowout, never count out Andrew Luck. The Colts are always in the game with him at QB despite their terrible defensive unit. Luck will target T.Y. often in his game and I think they try and get him free of Chris Harris. I expect a patented deep ball touchdown from Hilton, as well as 5-6 catches and 80 yards. 20 DK points might be a nice enough spot from the wide receiver position to build around some of the high-priced running backs.
Draftkings Price: $4900
I want exposure to the Tampa Bay – Arizona game which, sneakily, has the second highest O/U on Sunday. Arizona is going to come out firing on offense after that loss to Jimmy G and New England. My favorite play in this game is David Johnson, but at his price (the most expensive RB on DK) I chose to look elsewhere at Michael Floyd. Floyd only caught three passes for 61 yards, but still saw seven targets. His average depth of target (aDot) was 15.6, so he has the chance for a big play. When I think about how Sanu was able to get deep on this defense a week ago, I like Floyd’s chances to do the same. This could be the game to kick off the Michael Floyd hype from the offseason. His salary gives you the chance to get studs in your lineup and could easily return 3-4x value.
Draftkings Price: $5000
One thing that I told myself I could not forget about when writing this was how dominant Kelce was last year versus Houston. Let’s take a look at the two games from 2015:
Week 1 @ Houston: 6 Targets, 6 Receptions, 106 Yards, 2 Touchdowns
Wild Card Game @ Houston: 10 Targets, 8 catches, 128 yards
Now one can look at this two ways. Either you’re thinking “well surely Houston won’t let this happen again” or “Kelce torches the Texans.” I’m on the latter. I think this is a prime matchup for Kelce and he will be on multiple lineups for me. Jeremy Maclin will struggle against Jonathan Joseph and Spencer Ware is not going to be able to get loose against Houston’s front seven. This is why Kelce eats in these matchups going over the middle of the field. I look for Alex Smith to target Kelce around 8-10 times, and would not be surprised to see Kelce as a top three scoring Tight End from the weekend.
Draftkings Price: $3900
I hate having to put Fleener here. I really do, but like I said with Vereen – contrarian plays are a great way to get exposure to the projected New Orleans – New York Giants Bonanza II. Fleener is the contrarian of all contrarian plays. Mostly because people are down on him due to his lack of production last week against the Oakland Raiders who gave up fourth most fantasy points to Tight Ends last year. I haven’t done much research on this, but he might be the most frustrating player in all of fantasy. Fleener will be overlooked with so many value plays available at TE on DK. At this price, I’m really just looking for 4-50-1 which is nearly 4x value on his price. If you watched the Dallas – New York Giants game last week you know why Fleener is here in this article. Witten made a mockery of the Giants linebackers going for 9-66. These are the stat lines for Tight Ends facing the Giants since week 15 of 2015:
Greg Olsen — 6-79-1
Kyle Rudolph — 3-53-1
Zach Ertz – 9-152
Witten (2016): see above
Even if Fleener can’t find the endzone on Sunday, this is a trend I want a piece of in Daily Fantasy.
Draftkings Price: $2900
Start your Tight Ends against Oakland. It’s a pretty simple concept (unless you’re New Orleans). Remember, Oakland allowed the fourth most points to Tight Ends. Tamme is a guy I’ll be placing into lineups to get two of the stud receivers in without completely killing safety at the running back and quarterback position. Atlanta has few options in the passing game. Sanu and Jones are banged up so Tamme better be ready to run routes. He tied the team-high with eight targets. That’s right…the same amount of targets as Julio Jones. No way routine DFS players pick up on that. At $2900 I guarantee most will just go with Virgil Green at $2800, the Broncos darling, or Clive Walford and chase points there. There’s really not much to lose and a lot to gain when you put Tamme in your lineup.