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It’s the most wonderful time of the year for fantasy football owners as the playoffs are set to begin next week – or in some cases, this week. Even if your beleaguered team has fallen short in your season-long league, you can still load up on DFS lineups. That’s the beauty of it.
There are plenty of door-buster values to be had on this week’s DFS slate, so let’s set some lineups, shall we?
Deshaun Watson, Texans (vs. Cleveland) — $11,400
Watson’s low pass volume has limited his value somewhat this season, but he’s starting to make plays with his legs again and the Texans are on an absolute roll. As I perused the quarterback prices on FantasyDraft this week, Watson stood out as he gets to go up against a Browns defense that has allowed the fourth-most passing yards in the league. If it means anything to you – and it really should – Fantasy Labs has Watson ranked as their top quarterback value in tournament models and second-best for cash games this week.
Lamar Jackson, Ravens (at Atlanta) — $11,000
Jackson doesn’t qualify at running back, but he is putting up borderline RB1 numbers through his first two starts… at quarterback. He has 37 carries for 190 yards and one touchdown through two starts. As an added bonus, the Falcons are quite charitable against the pass – you know, should Jackson decide to do more of that. Atlanta ranks seventh in passing yards allowed while also ceding the second-most touchdown passes (25) and third-highest completion percentage (70.2).
Theo Riddick, Lions (vs. LA Rams) — $9,200
With Marvin Jones done for the season and Kerryon Johnson looking iffy again this week, Riddick is in line for a lot of snaps. He has 25 receptions over four November games. The downside is that he never carries the ball and has yet to find that painted section at either end of the field this season, but he’s come close… including a few times on Thanksgiving. Maybe he’ll get there against a Rams defense that has permitted a running back receiving touchdown in three straight games.
Lamar Miller, Texans (vs. Cleveland) — $8,500
Was Miller’s big Monday Night Football performance accounted for when his salary was set for the week? Nope, the prices were already set by then. That’s a good thing for us so take advantage. He jumps out as a great value for a rolling Texans offense against the Browns this week. Fantasy Labs agrees wholeheartedly for those playing in either cash games or tournaments at FantasyDraft this week. He is ranked as the No. 1 running back value in both models. Let there be plenty of exposure.
Carlos Hyde, Jaguars (vs. Indianapolis) $6,400
With Leonard Fournette serving a one-game suspension, Hyde will get the first crack at carrying the running back load in the Jacksonville backfield. Oh sure, the Jaguars have lost seven in a row and have a brand new offensive coordinator, new quarterback and new left guard this week. What’s most important is that Hyde is a running back with a pulse that will cost you almost nothing in DFS. He’s more of a tournament play than a cash game play in my book, given the boom-or-bust potential – Hyde is the 13th-ranked value at running back in Fantasy Labs’ tournament model this week.
Kenny Golladay, Lions (vs. LA Rams) — $12,600
It feels like Golladay might be the lone surviving skill position player in the Lions offense. I know that’s not actually the case but you know what I mean. Matthew Stafford evidently smells what I’m cooking, as he has targeted Golladay 36 times over the past three games. KG has hauled in 19 of the throws for a total of 281 yards and two touchdowns.
Yeah, he’ll likely be shadowed by Rams top corner Marcus Peters this Sunday, but Golladay is the better player – especially since Peters has a tendency to gamble in coverage. Did I mention that the Rams have allowed the most touchdowns to wide receivers (18) this season? Oh, and the game script for this one strongly suggests Stafford might need to pass 50 or so times in an effort to keep pace on the scoreboard. In a word, volume.
Tyler Lockett, Seahawks (vs. San Francisco) — $10,900
Is it just me or is Lockett not getting enough appreciation for scoring eight touchdowns in 11 games – spreading the love thin such that he hasn’t put up more than one score in any game. That’s a really nice floor to have as a fantasy owner. The Niners’ defense has given up four wide receiver touchdowns in their past two games and have now allowed 15 on the season – just three fewer than the aforementioned Rams’ wideout-friendly defense. Lockett is coming off a season-high 107 receiving yards last week against the Panthers, adding leftover turkey gravy to his almost-weekly touchdown. Mark Lockett down for another trip to the end zone this week.
DJ Moore, Panthers (at Tampa Bay) — $10,600
Moore will be in nearly every stinkin’ DFS lineup I set this week, and he will be stacked with Cam Newton frequently. I’d put him in every one of my lineups, but an investor must diversify, right? The pillow-soft matchup against the horribly inept Buccaneers defense is tantalizing enough, but when you combine it with the fact that Devin Funchess (back) and Curtis Samuel (hamstring) are nursing injuries, it’s almost too good to be true. I’ve been in the front seat of the Moore bandwagon since the moment the Panthers drafted him so it’s a little tough to be objective here, but Fantasy Labs is in lockstep with my Scooby senses on this — take that as a good sign.
Eric Ebron, Colts (at Jacksonville) — $9,000
Is Ebron the best tight end in fantasy football? No. But that’s not a question any of us thought we’d even be musing. Ever. However, here we are in Week 13 and Ebron’s 11 touchdowns in 11 games are four more than anyone else at his position and tied for most in the league with Tyreek Hill and Antonio Brown. How then, are there four tight ends (Travis Kelce, Zach Ertz, Rob Gronkowski and George Kittle) that will cost more on FantasyDraft this week? And how is it that the least expensive of the four (Kittle) will cost you $2,000 more than Ebron? With Jack Doyle landing on Injured Reserve, Ebron won’t have the same timeshare on snaps or routes run. Not that it has mattered.
Kyle Rudolph, Vikings (at New England) $7,100
The Vikings remembered Rudolph on Sunday night against the Packers, getting him a season-high seven receptions and a season-high 63 yards. Bill Belichick’s defensive game plan usually includes trying to take away the opponent’s top weapon and making them beat his Patriots with someone else. The “best weapon” in this case is either Adam Thielen or Stefon Diggs – leaving Rudolph to have another good game via open looks. What’s more, the Patriots have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points per game to tight ends this season. Will you let Rudolph guide your sleigh this Sunday?
Denver Broncos (at Cincinnati) — $5,300
I wonder if Jeff Driskel has ever met Von Miller or Bradley Chubb. If not, he will this Sunday. That’s unfortunate for Driskel. It looks like he will get A.J. Green back this week, but that won’t be enough. There’s still plenty of room for error and Driskel could very well explore that room.
Tennessee Titans (vs. NY Jets) — $5,900
The Titans rank 10th in total defense and sixth in scoring defense and will be at home this week against the Jets, who might have Josh McCown under center again. Only the Buccaneers (29) have turned the ball over more often than the Jets (23) have this season. The Titans are Fantasy Lab’s fifth-ranked defense value for Cash games this week. I’m Bo Mitchell and I approve that assessment.
There exists an endless trove of additional data plus incredible tools for modeling, lineup building and more at FantasyLabs.com. If you play DFS, FantasyLabs will make you a better player. Use the code 50OFF to get half off a trial membership.
The Fantasy Football Party is recorded each week by John Tuvey, Bo Mitchell and Anthony Maggio. Subscribe to the podcast and never miss an episode by clicking here for iTunes or here for Android.
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