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The Daily Dose – DraftKings


By Bryan Sweet, DFW Senior Writer and Co-Owner, @FantasyFreakDFW

Welcome to your DFS Daily Dose!  Our goal with this article is to bring to light some players who can help you profit in daily fantasy football.  If you’re new to the scene, I suggest you read this post to get a general overview of what we’re going to be talking about in this article every week.  Once you’ve finished getting caught up, rejoin us for some strategy for taking down both cash games and GPPs on DraftKings.

LAST WEEK

The streak continues with two winning lineups on DraftKings.  Our cash game lineup CRUSHED this week, nearing 200 points.  What’s all the more impressive is Graham provided just 2.6.  Hopefully you got a lot of exposure to this lineup this week.  Our GPP lineup didn’t score near the same number of points, but it still cashed in most contests.  The injury to Gordon could have derailed this lineup, but it was saved by a monster performance from Bell.  Can we extend our dual winning streak to three weeks?  Let’s give it a go!

CASH GAMES

Cash games are the bankroll builders of daily fantasy football.  Everyone wants to hit a life-changing GPP, but you’ve got to have money to enter those tournaments.  If you can be successful in cash games, and play a higher dollar amount in these versus GPPs, you should be able to build a sustainable bankroll to last throughout the season and beyond.  So, who are some targets on DraftKings that can help lead us to a profit in cash games?

Joe Flacco, QB, Baltimore Ravens ($5,700, 19.2 projected points)
Much like Alex Smith (foreshadowing!), Flacco isn’t a sexy pick at QB, but he’s been surprisingly good this season from a fantasy perspective.  Flacco has averaged nearly 18 DK points per game and showed off how high he can go with his strong performance against two weeks ago against Miami (381 yards, four TDs, 33.24 DK points).  He was good last week as well, posting 324 yards and two TDs against the Patriots.  This week, facing the Philadelphia Eagles, he has an opportunity to show off his cannon arm.  Philadelphia has struggled with giving up chunk plays to WRs and Baltimore has some big play threats at WR.  Flacco’s low price makes it easier to achieve the 3X value we’re looking for and he should be able to reach it quite easily this week.

Le’Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers ($9,800, 27.4 projected points)
There are two guys at the RB position that about just about guarantees in DFS, and they are David Johnson and Bell.  Both are heavily involved in their team’s offensive gameplan and contribute in the passing game, increasing their fantasy stats.  Bell vastly outperformed Johnson last week, so his ownership will probably see an uptick this week, but he gives us a $300 discount over Johnson and we are projecting the two for a nearly identical statline.  Honestly, that salary difference is the only reason Bell is in over Johnson this week, but if you like Johnson better and can save the $300 at another position, I wouldn’t have a problem with that.

Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers ($8,400, 23.1 projected points)
I made the call on Brown last week, and it didn’t work out so well.  We have to have a short memory, however, in DFS and I’m going back to Brown again this week.  The Bengals have nothing to play for at this point, and while it’s a divisional matchup, I think the Steelers look sharp this week on offense and keep their foot on the gas.  Brown is capable of putting up a 30-point performance on any given week, but he still provides us with a high enough floor to consider him for our cash game lineups.  I don’t recommend going all-in on Brown, but I think he can reach value this week based on volume alone.

What might a lineup look like featuring these three players?  Let’s take a look.

POSITION PLAYER/TEAM SALARY PROJECTION
QB Joe Flacco/BAL $5,700 19.2
RB Le’Veon Bell/PIT $9,800 27.4
RB Kenneth Dixon/BAL $3,800 15.0
WR Antonio Brown/PIT $8,400 23.1
WR Demaryius Thomas/DEN $6,300 17.6
WR Marqise Lee/JAX $4,000 12.8
TE Travis Kelce/KC $5,900 16.8
FLEX Justin Forsett/DEN $3,000 11.8
DEF Baltimore Ravens $3,100 11.6
TOTAL $50,000 155.3

We got a couple cheaper options at RB in Hill and Kelly, but both are the lead back on their teams and should see the majority of the workload, giving them great value.  Gabriel might see more targets this week due to the injuries to Julio Jones and Mohammed Sanu and Anderson is Petty’s preferred target.  At just $3,000, if Anderson catches a TD he’s at value.  Graham is looking more and more like the dominant TE he was in New Orleans and Atlanta gets a struggling Rams team that is already focused on next season.

GPPs

Life. Changing. Money.  That’s the draw for GPPs with seven-figure top prizes and low entry fees, but how can one be taken down?  The easy answer is it can’t without everything going your way, but we can try and tilt those odds just a little by focusing on those with high ceilings and low projected ownership.  Let’s see if we can find some of the players who fit that bill.

Alex Smith, QB, Kansas City Chiefs ($5,400, 17.0 projected points)
As we mentioned in the Flacco write-up above, Smith isn’t a “sexy” QB selection, but his low-risk style of play has been accentuated by his big play receivers.  Travis Kelce has moved into the #1 receiver role and Tyreek Hill brings a dynamic option to Kansas City’s passing game.  Jeremy Maclin returned last week, but was an afterthought in his first week back.  Still, Maclin commands attention from the defense, opening up more of the field for other playmakers.  Tennessee’s defense has allowed 300 or more passing yards in six of their last eight games, including the likes of Matt Barkley and Trevor Siemian.  Smith has 4X upside this week.

Ryan Mathews, RB, Philadelphia Eagles ($3,900, 10.2 projected points)
Mathews is nearly the last man standing in Philadelphia’s backfield as both Wendell Smallwood and Darren Sproles have already been ruled out for this week.  Kenjon Barner might see some action, but Mathews should see a considerable uptick in attempts this week.  At a near site-minimum salary, Mathews simply has to have an average game to hit 4X value.  Oh, and Philadelphia loves to run the ball once the offense gets inside the 10-yard line, so Mathews odds of scoring a TD are pretty good as well.

Sammy Watkins, WR, Buffalo Bills ($5,900 15.0 projected points)
Watkins occupied this same spot last week, and turned an OK fantasy day into a decent one with a late TD.  Watkins has not seen the number of targets given to a typical #1 WR, but he’s also either playing with or recovering from a broken foot.  If Watkins can get to double-digit targets this week, he could turn in a monster performance with his incredible athletic ability.  I suspect that target bump is coming sooner rather than later, and it’s best to get on board before his price increases and reap the rewards.  Could this be the week?

So, can we put together a high ceiling team including these three players?  I believe we can.

POSITION PLAYER/TEAM SALARY PROJECTION
QB Alex Smith/KC $5,400 17.0
RB Ryan Mathews/PHI $3,900 10.2
RB Le’Veon Bell/PIT $9,800 27.4
WR Sammy Watkins/BUF $5,900 15.0
WR Antonio Brown/PIT $8,400 23.1
WR Rishard Matthews/TEN $4,600 14.8
TE Jermaine Gresham/ARI $2,500 9.6
FLEX Latavius Murray/OAK $5,800 18.1
DEF Buffalo Bills $3,700 12.5
TOTAL $50,000 147.7

The duo of Brown and Bell find their way onto both of our lineups this week, but the explosiveness of Pittsburgh’s offense make both viable options nearly every week.  Rishard Matthews has become Marcus Mariota’s favorite target and his big play ability make him an attractive option in GPP contests.  Gresham is a little-used TE, but the recent release of Michael Floyd and the continuing absence of John Brown make him the third option in Arizona’s passing attack now.  At just $2,500, a TD gets him to 3X value and he should be in line for a season high in targets.  Murray has solidified his lead back status in Oakland and gets to face San Diego’s pitiful rush defense.  Getting him at a sub-$6,000 price seems criminal.

Well, there’s my prescription for taking down cash games and GPPs on DraftKings in week 15.  We’ll schedule a follow up appointment for next Saturday to see how we did and look ahead to week 16.  Best of luck!