The Fantasy Football Party hosts post a values analysis every week, right here at ZoneCoverage.com, in an effort to help you set winning DFS lineups for the podcast listener league and all the other great games at FantasyDraft.com — their exclusive DFS partner for 2018!
Congratulations are in order for the 56 teams that advanced to Week 3 in our Survivor League. Only 40 will advance to Week 4. Good luck! Now let’s get down to bid-ness.
Let’s run through some of the players at each position who stand out one way or another using the modeling tool at FantasyLabs.com. All scoring projections/rankings are from their cash model for Week 3. (editor’s note: Get half off a trial membership at Fantasy Labs with the code 50OFF!)
Deshaun Watson, Texans vs. NY Giants $11,400
Watson hasn’t exactly picked up where he left off last season before the injury, but the outrageous stats are bound to return soon, right? Maybe even this week when the Texans have their home opener against the listless Giants. Watson threw 13 of his 19 touchdown passes over four home games last season. The good scientists at FantasyLabs have Watson pegged as their No. 2-rated quarterback in their cash model this week and project him to have the fifth-highest scoring total. You know who to stack him with.
Blake Bortles, Jaguars vs. Tennessee $10,900
Don’t laugh. Bortles’ fantasy value is a thing again, especially while Leonard Fournette is still gimping around on a sore hammy. His 538 yards passing and five touchdown passes through two games are evidence of fantasy relevance. With more than a dozen quarterbacks on FantasyDraft who will cost you more than Bortles this week, the value is there too.
Bortles at home against a Titans defense that has allowed two touchdown passes in each of its first two games is the kind of player you can construct a winning DFS lineup around. FantasyLabs agrees, placing Bortles fourth on its cash model quarterback rankings for Week 3.
Javorius Allen, Ravens vs. Denver $8,500
Buck was a popular pick-up in re-draft leagues this week (e.g. he was added to rosters in over 14 percent of leagues on ESPN.com). The Ravens have been turning to him in the passing game a little, as expected, but are also feeding him at the goal line – he has a 1-yard touchdown plunge in each of his first two games. His price tag remains affordable, which is fun news for the whole family.
Giovani Bernard, Bengals at Carolina $10,400
With Joe Mixon out up to four weeks due to knee surgery, Bernard is the next man up. Gio seemingly delivers every time he’s given the opportunity to carry the extra load – like last year when he had 10 or more touches in each of the last five games, eclipsing 100 yards from scrimmage three times and reaching the end zone four times. He’ll be facing a Panthers defense that ceded 107 yards to Tevin Coleman a week ago. The algorithms at FantasyDraft hiked his price a little this week, but Bernard is still a value with 22 more expensive running backs ahead of him.
Corey Clement, Eagles at Indianapolis $9,000
The first thing to do in any cash game you enter this week is plug Clement in your lineup. He might be a tad too trendy to use in tournaments, but he’s a still possibility there as well. With both Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles nursing injuries, this could be Clement’s chance to break out with a big performance.
We know he has the ability; it’s just been a matter of opportunity in the Philly offense. Now that he has a clear path to touches, nothing should stop him from making an impact – unless you trust the Colts’ defense on the road against the return of Carson Wentz. His price won’t be this low next week.
Kenny Golladay, Lions vs. New England $8,000
With a fantasy point total firmly among the top 15 wide receivers through two games, Golladay is blossoming into the star many of us anticipated last season. There’s zero chance his price remains in this range very long so take advantage while you can. The Patriots defense he’ll be facing this week has allowed four wide receiver touchdowns through two games, including three last week in the loss to Jacksonville. Golladay is going to be a problem for the Pats.
Chris Godwin, Buccaneers vs. Pittsburgh $7,900
I have not checked the Vegas numbers yet, but I have to assume the over-under for the Steelers-Buccaneers game is north of 100 points. No? Well, it should be. While stocking your lineup with Bucs this week, don’t overlook Godwin – FantasyLab’s 16th-ranked wide receiver value in cash models this week. He has a touchdown in both games this season — and also had one in the last two preseason games — so Fitzmagic has clearly learned to throw him the money shot. Pittsburgh has already allowed four wide receivers to find the end zone and three to top 90 yards.
Geronimo Allison, Packers at Washington $8,300
Allison had 88 yards and a touchdown in Week 1 and then caught all six of his targets for a total of 64 yards against the Vikings last week, playing 61 of 77 snaps. Not a bad start for a Packer who was at the fringe of fantasy radars to start the season. About that $8,300 price point: There are 54 (!) more expensive wideouts on FantasyDraft this week. Slot in Allison, grab a pricey complement like Michael Thomas and away you go with your winning lineup.
Jesse James, Steelers at Tampa Bay $6,600
James is still quite affordable even after his blowup game last week when he had 138 yards and a touchdown. The Steelers-Bucs game looks and smells like a high-scoring affair, with ample fantasy points to go around. And some of them will likely land in James’ lap, as no defense has allowed more receptions or yards to tight ends on the young season than the Buccaneers.
Jared Cook, Raiders at Miami $8,300
I anticipated a larger spike in Cook’s price this week after he rumbled to the lead among tight ends with 229 receiving yards through two games. Aside from part of a game from Delanie Walker, the Dolphins have not faced a legit tight end yet this season so they are sitting ducks for Cook. Though he’s not quite in the bargain bin — he’s the eighth-most expensive tight end on FantasyDraft this week — he’s still affordable. FantasyLabs has him pegged as their fifth-rated tight-end value in cash game models and projects him with the sixth-best score among tight ends.
Minnesota Vikings vs. Buffalo $7,800
Even though the Vikings are FantasyDraft’s most expensive defense this week, they are worth using everywhere. I’m not sure much needs to be said here. The Vikes D is elite. The Bills are a mess. The game is in Minnesota and the Purple are prohibitive favorites. It’s pretty easy to imagine a three-score Vikings lead by the third quarter, at which point their vaunted pass rush will pin its ears back and go after rookie Josh Allen. Poor Josh.
Dallas Cowboys at Seattle $3,900
Did you see the Seahawks on Monday night against the Bears? The game wasn’t as close as the garbage-time inflated score would suggest. Seattle’s new offense has yet to find its bearings, leaving Russell Wilson to run around behind his leaky line looking for someone to get open, holding the ball too long and wondering when Doug Baldwin will be back. The Cowboys’ defense is quietly emerging as one of the better units in the league. The corner play is stout and the pass rush is getting it done. That’s a good combination.
The ‘Boys won their fantasy owners some games last week with their performance against Eli Manning and the Giants. This week, if you don’t set sail with the Vikings defense, consider going with Dallas for half the price.
There is 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.
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