amount of value available at the running back and wide receiver
position allowed for multiple avenues of roster construction this
week. The most popular being two expensive RBs and one cheap RB
which allowed you to pay up for a couple high-priced pass catchers.
Paying down at RB at two spots and jamming in three stud receivers
was also an option. Both paths were able to be profitable as long
as you made the right player choices.
Here’s a look at my cash game Lineup for Fanduel in Week
We had a few more options available at quarterback this week,
but just like last week, this position was a relatively easy call
for me. Ben Roethlisberger ($8600), Aaron Rodgers ($8100), Deshaun Watson ($7800) and Jameis Winston ($7600) were all in consideration
but Winston was always going to be my guy as long as the weather
wasnít an issue. Early in the week, rain and wind were forecasted
for Sunday in Tampa but we got word early Sunday morning that
the weather would vacate the area before gametime.
The Saints defense has been improving over the last few weeks
but the pass-happy Tampa offense playing at home was more than
enough to justify Winston at his reasonable price tag. Winston
struggled with accuracy, completing 18 of 38 attempts but managed
a couple short TDs to Cameron Brate and added 47 yards on the
ground, good enough to be the 10th ranked fantasy QB on the slate.
Quarterback ownership was spread out with Watson (25.6%), Winston
(15.0%), Rodgers (13.8%), and Roethlisberger (13.5%) being the
most popular in this $10 double up.
I wanted to try and jam in as many high-priced running backs
as I can, given their high touch and projection total. My initial
build of week contained all three of Christian McCaffrey ($9100),
Saquon Barkley ($8900) and Ezekiel Elliott ($8800) and even though
we had enough value at wide receiver to make it work, I couldnít
get comfortable having two cheap wide receivers in my lineup.
In the end, I dropped my least favorite RB stud (Barkley) and
rolled with Zeke and McCaffrey that latter of which continues
to play an insane amount of snaps while seeing his goaline role
increase. McCaffrey has now finished as a top five fantasy running
back in each of the last three weeks.
We had three value options at the position with Jeff Wilson ($5600),
Jaylen Samuels ($4600) and Justin Jackson ($4500) and all expected
to see increased roles due to injured starters. Jackson thrived
in his complementary role last week (8-63-1; 1-19) and got a value
bump thanks to some coach speak from HC Anthony Lynn referencing
Austin Ekelerís shaky durability. However, the game environment
for Samuels (PIT -10, T: 51.0) and a Sunday morning blurb from
Ian Rapoport suggesting Samuels would see the bulk of the carries
was enough to lock in his cheap cost and pay up at another receiver
spot. While I projected Wilson might see a few more touches than
Samuels, I didnít like Wilsonís TD expectation and
was more comfortable taking a chance on the Steelers offense against
a porous Raiders defense. Ownership seemed to agree as Samuels
(78.2%) was the favorite cheap RB play over Jackson (14.7%) and
Paying down at one of the running back spots allowed me to afford
two studs at the receiver position. The problem was, we had so
many high-priced wide receivers in good spots it was difficult
to narrow down the pool. Davante Adams ($8700), Julio Jones ($8400),
DeAndre Hopkins ($8600), Keenan Allen ($7900) and Michael Thomas
($8300) were all viable options and I included JuJu Smith-Schuster
($7500) in that group who came at slight discount but had just
as much upside and a higher catch percentage than Antonio Brown
I had some concerns about Julioís foot given he only practiced
on Friday and didnít want to risk re-injury or him playing
limited snaps. I also thought Allenís upside was capped
given the Chargers were projected to win this game easily and
could be pounding the ball on the ground for much of the 4th quarter.
That left me with waffling between Adams and Hopkins. I thought
the Colts would keep this game close which should keep Watson and the Texans throwing through the entire game and therefore
keep Hopkinsí ceiling in play. Results showed that Adams
was the better choice and I was grateful to the fantasy gods for
Hopkins short TD late in the game.
Chris Godwin ($5600) was too cheap for his talent and role in
the offense and in a decent game environment making him the first
player I locked into my lineup at the wide receiver position.
I projected Courtland Sutton ($5600) to see a few extra targets
but heís largely been a disappointment this season making
him a riskier play than Godwin at the same price. Odell Beckham Jr. being ruled on Saturday opened up Sterling Shepard ($5200)
for consideration but I still favored Godwin on talent and it
was easy to see how the Giants offense could sputter in on the
road without one of their top weapons facing an above-average
Iím always looking to pay down at tight end and while Travis Kelce ($8000) and Eric Ebron ($6400) were obviously good plays,
I felt more comfortable paying for Hopkins and JuJu over Kelce
at a similar price. Scrapping the bottom of the barrel, we find
Ian Thomas ($4900) who was taking over for the injured Greg Olsen
and figured to see five or six targets in a game I thought has
some shootout potential. I definitely was on an island with Thomas
who was only 0.6 percent owned and ran hot with him seeing 11
targets for 9-77 line. My favorite cheap play of the week was
Vance McDonald ($5500) against a Raiders defense that susceptible
to tight ends but I couldnít find the salary in my roster
construction to make him fit.
Ezekiel Elliott ($8800) was my favorite running back play on
the week and my favorite of the Zeke-Barkley-McCaffrey trio. While
his 12 receptions were easily a season high, his usage in the
passing game has soared this season Ė he now ranks 5th among
RBs with 65 receptions. This is why prioritizing these high volume,
pass-receiving running backs is such a key, even on half-point
PPR sites like Fanduel. Often, itís the optimal way to go
from a cash game lineup construction perspective.
The Browns ($3200) and Packers ($3500) were my two favorite cheap
plays at defense this week but I didnít have the salary
to fit Green Bay... or the Giants ($3500) who I didnít give
enough consideration to, but were in a great spot facing the Redskins,
decimated by injuries and trotting out Mark Sanchez at the quarterback
position. The G-Men were the most popular in this double up at
37.1 percent owned.
I felt comfortable with my lineup construction path of paying
down at one running back spot, and was rewarded for taking a stand
on JuJu who I felt was just as good a play as the higher-priced
receivers. I was fortunate to gain an advantage on the field with
my cheap tight end play which mitigated the underperformance of
Hopkins relative to the other wide receiver and tight end plays
in his price range (Keenan, Kelce, Adams). Not playing Barkley
could have bit me in the butt had Zeke not posted a monster game
in the afternoon (without a TD) but thankfully the Eagles-Cowboys
put on a 4th quarter and overtime show that landed me easily above
the cash line.