Pat Mahomes had his worst game of the season and failed to register a touchdown but he didn’t throw for a touchdown, despite throwing for over 300 yards and rushing over 50. Ekeler, our late upgrade over Jacobs via Twitter due to the injury updates, stepped in and had another monster day. Kenny Golladay, David Johnson, Wayne Gallman, and Will Dissly also had huge days. Overall, it turned out to be a decent week, but I’m spoiled in DFS and I’m going to be upset if I don’t win every contest, so there’s work to be done this week to have another sweep.
DraftKings Lineup Scores for our 2019 season thus far
Week 1: 168
Week 2: 146
Week 3: 185 & 158
Week 4: 142 & 127 (Cash 132 & 130)
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Week 5 preview
Week 5 looms as a more uncertain week for me in recent memory. There are some strange matchups this week and after all the weird stuff that happened a week ago, it’s making the assessments a bit more challenging than usual. Fear not, I will guide you through the labyrinth of the DFS landscape and lead you to more cashes.
This week, we will be focusing on the Falcons and all their value in stacking. We will also be banking on a high line for the undervalued Michael Thomas. We’re going to be stacking a few Bengals in the second lineup since they are such low value plays against a bottom level defense at home.
Sure, it doesn’t sound appealing to stack Bengals this week, but we’re playing it by the numbers. I’m seeking the best-projected output for the lowest prices this week, so we can work in other more predictable performers into the lineup. I’m also providing five options at Flex this week so you can work around the two Bengals and Falcons stacking combos if you opt-out of that ride — which I totally understand.
As it is set every week, the prices on DraftKings are listed next to every player in parentheses.
|Colin's Picks For Week 5 of 2019 NFL Season|
|QB||Jameis Winston (DK-$6,200)||Andy Dalton (DK-$5,700)||Matt Ryan (DK-$5,900|
|RB||Phillip Lindsay (DK-$4,600)||Le’Veon Bell (DK-$6,800)||Leonard Fournette (DK-$6,400)|
|WR||Julio Jones (DK-$7,700)||Michael Thomas (DK-$6,600)||Auden Tate (DK-$3,500)|
|TE||Evan Engram (DK-$5,800)||Darren Waller (DK-$5,000)||Tyler Eifert (DK-$3,300)|
|Defense||Patriots D (DK-$4,300)||Colts D (DK-$3,700)|
|Flex||DeAndre Hopkins (DK-$7,800)||Devonta Freeman (DK-$5,300)||Miles Sanders (DK-$4,500||Geronimo Allison (DK-$5,000)|
Jameis Winston (DK-$6,200)
One big lineup decision this week will be centered around Jameis Winston and staying away from the Falcons and Bengals combos (minus Tate and Julio, who will be in both). Oddsmakers have Winston over 310 passing yards this week and 2.25 touchdown passes. It seems like he should be able to exploit this Saints passing defense, since the Saints are 31st in pass defense.
Don’t be fooled by last week’s stout performance against the Cowboys. The Cowboys offensive line has been underperforming and Ezekiel Elliott couldn’t get anything going on the ground. Their passing became too predictable and their routes were too deep to give Dak enough time to exploit the defense. The Bucs have been much better at pass protection this season and Winston has been very sharp the past two weeks. Let’s hope he doesn’t pick this week to turn back into a pumpkin again. We have to ride the wave while it’s still peaking and the value is certainly there for the price.
Andy Dalton (DK-$5,700)
Playing Andy Dalton in fantasy is a lot like eating a candy apple some stranger gives you on Halloween. Sure, you can assume that by the looks of that sweet, old lady, she didn’t do anything to the apple and it SHOULD be good, but how certain are you? This week, Dalton looks like that possibly delicious, possibly infused with Fentanyl, apple. Do we trust enough in the sweet, old lady (Arizona defense) that Dalton will be a great play this week? After all, the week prior, a seemingly nice, young lady (Pittsburgh defense) appeared to be a decent play but they turned out to be a witch, or a crackhead, maybe both.
Regardless, this is a risky play for the week, but oddsmakers have Dalton around 280 yards and 2 touchdowns, so he’s a good value buy if you’d like to pay up elsewhere. Dalton may be worth the bite this week, and if it turns out he’s poison, we can at least swear off candy apples for the rest of the season.
Matt Ryan (DK-$5,900
I’ll likely be rolling with Ryan and Andy Dalton this week, but we shall see as the games creep closer. Matt Ryan will be challenged on the road this week with pressure off the blitz. The Texans currently rank 8th against quarterbacks this season but the reason we like him this week is his line. Ryan’s line is 310 yards passing and 2.75 touchdowns. Though the Falcons are only expected to score around 23 points, it appears Matt Ryan may be accounting for a good majority of it. As long as the pass protection can hold up, Ryan is due for a big day.
Phillip Lindsay (DK-$4,600)
Lindsay is almost a “must-start” in both lineups this week. Oddsmakers have Lindsay projected for 84 total yards, so his actual price should be around $6,500. Lucky for us, it isn’t and that means we are getting this man for a tremendous value. He might be the best value player for the week. I understand the Chargers offer a difficult matchup, but Lindsay makes his living outside the tackles and getting the ball in space. Regardless of how tough this matchup is, if the Broncos are in a negative game script, (this spread dictates they should be) I see Lindsay getting a healthy dose of touches.
Le’Veon Bell (DK-$6,800)
Lev Bell has been slowed this season by teams stacking the box since Sam Darnold went down. He’s also been slowed by a third-string quarterback who can’t make passes downfield. It’s clear the Eagles pass defense is their weakness, so expect Bell to get plenty of work through the air as well. With all the attention on Bell, teams have still struggled to slow him down each week.
In PPR formats like DraftKings, Bell has been a very strong play, despite only one score through the first four weeks. Bell is an absolute must-start. Oddsmakers have set Bell’s line around 117 total yards. That’s amazing, especially when we consider the high floor Bell has from receptions alone. At a price, he’s a much better value than, say, David Johnson. Johnson is priced at $7,500 and has a line of around 105, so the value we’re getting from Bell is very nice.
Leonard Fournette (DK-$6,400)
Last week, Fournette looked like the man everyone expected to see at the start of the season. He went for 225 yards against what was perceived to be a decent rush defense. Carolina isn’t a bad matchup for Fournette, but it should be noted Fournette has a line of around 112 yards this week. Like Bell, Fournette has similar value when you consider the estimated yardage for both and their price. Unlike Bell, Fournette’s receiving ceiling likely won’t be as high. Regardless, it’s realistic to expect a high floor for both Fournette and Bell this week.
Julio Jones (DK-$7,700)
Julio Jones is about to play a team that gave up nearly 200 yards receiving to Keenan Allen just a few weeks prior. Julio has to be considered the best option at the position this week. His line is around 105 yards, so there’s really not a lot of doubt as to how people expect he will perform. The key here will be pass protection. The Falcons haven’t been giving Ryan the time to let some of these deeper routes develop and the result has been heavy targets to Ryan’s check down option, Austin Hooper. I think Julio is a must-start this week in a very favorable matchup.
Michael Thomas (DK-$6,600)
Thomas is the second-best value at the receiver position this week, in my opinion. He’s got a great matchup, but there’s still doubt from many, myself included, as to whether Teddy Bridgewater will be able to get him the kind of volume that will make him worthy of a start. I think Thomas’ ceiling is definitely lower with Teddy B at quarterback, but I think this price of $6,600 is insanely low, given the projected 92 yards receiving via the oddsmakers.
Auden Tate (DK-$3,500)
Auden Tate is a name many of us have never heard of until very recently. It’s understandable for a few reasons. For one, he was a 7th round pick in 2018 out of Florida State. FSU has been a tough watch the past few years, and Tate didn’t exactly impress once he arrived in the league. After being waived in 2018, Tate was signed off the practice squad last November and since then, he has impressed the coaches in the preseason and now has the first start of his career. With 11 receptions and 144 yards receiving this season –10 receptions in the past two weeks — Tate has been coming on lately and the 6’5 wideout should get a major boost in his workload this week.
Evan Engram (DK-$5,800)
Evan Engram had a very tame game last week as the Giants didn’t need to do much at all to get a win against a turnover-happy Redskins team. This week will be a different story as the Vikings aren’t amazing against tight ends (19th) and the Giants are going to likely be working with a negative game script. The Vikings defense has been pretty solid all season, so I anticipate Engram being targeted frequently in this game to help the Giants try to find some offensive rhythm. I also don’t have a lot of faith in Wayne Gallman’s ability to help the offense very much. Engram’s line is around 77 yards this week, so expect him to get fed plenty in this game.
Darren Waller (DK-$5,000)
Darren Waller is in a similar predicament to Evan Engram this week. Both are preferred target options for their respective teams, but Waller tends to get more targets overall. This week, the Raiders will face the vaunted Bears defense.
Tyler Eifert (DK-$3,300)
Eifert hasn’t had much of an impact at all this season for the Bengals. He’s not being targeted much and he hasn’t done a whole lot with it when he has been. The good news for him is, the injury to John Ross means they’re short another receiver. Auden Tate will step in to fill in a void but Eifert’s target share should increase as well. The Cardinals are ranked dead last against tight ends, so this could easily be a big week for Eifert. At his current price of just $3,300, he’s possibly a huge steal this week. Eifert’s line is 44 yards this week, but we can only hope the Bengals coaching staff recognizes the glaring Arizona weakness defending that position and attack it.
Patriots D (DK-$4,300)
The Patriots are facing the Redskins Sunday and as of Friday, the Redskins don’t know who they’re going to start at quarterback. I can’t make this stuff up. They’re actually deciding between three different quarterbacks right now. Maybe this is some four-dimensional chess move where the Redskins are keeping the Patriots from being able to adequately plan for whomever the quarterback is? Or, maybe the Redskins just suck and this is where they are now as a franchise, rudderless. The truth is, Joe Montana in his prime could roll out there Sunday and I’d still take the Patriots defense in DFS. Don’t overthink it.
Colts D (DK-$3,700)
E-A-G-L-E-S Eagles are going to be a great value pick this week. The Jets will again be without Sam Darnold. That means Luke Falk, the third-string quarterback, will be the one trying to attack the Eagles through the air. The key here will be the Eagles and their potent pass rush. They understand they’re going to have to blitz the Jets frequently because the Eagles weakness is their secondary. If they can disrupt the passing offense of the Jets (which shouldn’t be too hard) we should see a few picks and more than a few sacks.
DeAndre Hopkins (DK-$7,800)
Hopkins hasn’t been setting the world on fire this season. In fact, he’s being ignored right now at a mildly alarming rate. For a guy who was widely considered the top option in fantasy before the season, Hopkins has been a letdown. The great news is, the Atlanta Falcons are in town and they’ve been horrible against opposing receivers all season. Last week, Marcus Mariota threw three touchdowns against the Falcons, two of which went to rookie, AJ Brown. Hopkins is on a whole different level. This is probably the cheapest we’ll see Hopkins in 2019. Hop on the train while you still can. I’m going with Hopkins in my B lineup, along with all the Bengals.
Devonta Freeman (DK-$5,300)
Freeman is an option for your lineups if you so choose to stack Falcons or just want to save money at RB or Flex. Freeman has a line of 84 combined yards, so he offers good value for the price. Houston’s defense has been pretty solid against the run, but with such a high line, it’s probably a safe bet Freeman turns out an alright week.
Miles Sanders (DK-$4,500
Miles Sanders’ expected totals are around 70-75 total yards. He had a very productive game on the ground a week ago, but he also offers some upside as a returner on kickoffs and is a decent option for passing downs. He’s close to the floor on cheap options, so I would put him last on the list of recs for this week. I’ll be keeping him in my pocket in case of an injury.
Geronimo Allison (DK-$5,000)
Someone is going to benefit from Davante Adams’ absence this week against the Cowboys. Why not Allison? MVS is the default #1 when Adams is out but there’s probably a case to be made that he won’t be able to do much against #1 corners. Allison, however, has been sporadically good this season, getting the big play here and there. For just $5,000, there’s a solid chance he benefits from Adams’ absence more than any other Packer this week.
Collin is a former Army Intelligence and Logistics officer who got a little too into Football analysis. Since leaving the Army, he’s practically the Jack Ryan of football analysts. But he spends most of his days with his wife and two daughters, so he is clearly a better father than Jack Ryan.
Follow Collin on Twitter @CollinHulbert