As always, the NFL season is moving right along as we are headed into Week 6. The Saints and Lions may be on a bye but there are still plenty of noteworthy options to grab a hold 0f in daily fantasy. On top of solid options, this column also has several stack options for you to cash in on. Everything from running backs on the same team, to the quarterback and wide receiver combo, this column has you covered.
Before anything, don’t forget to read how DraftKings does their scoring.
Too many amateur daily fantasy players see that they have $50,000 budget to fill a roster and like a puzzle, they try to spend as close to that number as possible. That, unfortunately, is not the best way to go about putting your lineup together. Selecting players is like making a big purchase in your personal life. It isn’t always about buying the most expensive item and it also isn’t about spending as little as humanly possible. When spending money it is really about getting the most out of your investment and seeing how far your dollar will take you. That is precisely how you should view your DraftKings lineup.
What is 3x?
Gridiron 3X is an NFL Daily Fantasy strategy where the goal is to build a lineup that scores 150 points or more. The reason why that number is so important is that 150 points is usually the required score to reach the winning side of a tournament. Once you can begin to see players in fantasy point production rather than DraftKings dollars, you can gain a better sense of the required fantasy output the player needs to archive in order for you to reach your 3X goal and win.
Example: Using an example from last season, Alex Smith, the quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs at the time, had a Drafts cost of $5,400. Using the Gridiron 3X method, Alex Smith needed to score 16.2 fantasy points (5.4 x 3=16.2) in order to reach his 3X goal. The best tip I can offer you when using this strategy is to see the dollar amount in decimals. If you remember, Alex Smith threw for 368 yards and four touchdowns against the New England Patriots. That hair-raising start would leave Smith with 34.02 points scored and therefore delivering you a fantastic return on your investment.
So now we have the DraftKings scoring, and we have the Gridiron 3X philosophy explained. With introductions and details now out of the way, here are some names that can deliver you a great return on your investment in week 6.
Jameis Winston ($5,800)
Like most magic tricks, Ryan Fitzpatrick and his ‘Fitzmagic’ has once again been debunked. With the journeyman quarterback headed to the bench, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will now hand the offense over to a returning Jameis Winston. Towards the tail end of the 2017 season, Winston was one of the better fantasy quarterbacks. Over his final five games last season, the former Florida State Seminole would average 316.8 passing yards per game. On top of the yards, Winston also finished those final five games with nine touchdown passes and five interceptions. All of that production had Winston finishing as a top 10 in four out of those final five games. If Winston has anything left in the tank from last season, he could wind up putting on a show against a Falcons defense that is allowing the second most points to the position and is riddled with injuries. The Buccaneers quarterback has enjoyed playing against the Falcons in the past as they are the only team that Winston has thrown double-digit passing touchdowns against. The other variable in this equation is the Buccaneers inability and unwillingness to run the ball. The offense currently ranks 30th in the league in rushing and have fewer rushing attempts than any other team. The stars could be aligning for Winston in his return to the huddle and utilizing him could make for a very profitable afternoon.
Andy Dalton ($6,300)
Coming into Week 6, Andy Dalton is thirteenth amongst quarterbacks in points scored. While last Sunday resulted in Dalton having his second-fewest passing yards of the season, I like the Bengals signal caller to bounce back in a nice matchup against a division rival. Opposing Dalton is a Pittsburgh Steelers defense that despite slowing down Matt Ryan last week, are still allowing the most points to the quarterback position. While last weeks return of Joe Mixon should ultimately help the Bengals more than it will harm them, it should be noted that this Steelers defense is currently allowing the fifth-fewest points to running backs. With that in mind, I’m fully expecting the Bengals to try and win this game behind the arm of Dalton which could result in the quarterback’s third 300-yard performance of 2018. With three top fifteen performances in his first five games, I like for Dalton to surprise some people with a very solid outing on Sunday.
Honorable mentions: Matt Ryan vs. Buccaneers, Kirk Cousins vs. Cardinals
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TJ Yeldon ($6,400)
This may seem like a chalk pick, but I’m rolling with TJ Yeldon in a matchup against the Dallas Cowboys. Currently, the Cowboys are seventeenth in points allowed to the position but this selection is all about volume. The Leonard Fournette hamstring injury has been well documented and as if that isn’t enough, Corey Grant is now on the IR with a lisfranc injury. The Jaguars did make an effort to beef up the depth chart this week by adding Jamaal Charles and while that may have some fans feeling nostalgic, it is safe to say that he will be a non-factor this weekend. Last week, in Fournette’s absence, Yeldon would have just 10 carries for 53 yards. Where Yeldon made up ground for his fantasy owners was through the passing game as he racked up a team-high, eight receptions for 69 yards and a touchdown. All of that resulted in Yeldon finishing the week as a top five running back. Make no mistake, despite Sean Lee being out of action, the Cowboys defense is improved. That being said though, they have allowed the sixth most receptions to the running back position, including 14 receptions to Saquan Barkley in Week 2. The Jaguars will use Yeldon any which way they can and that makes him a very useful option in daily fantasy.
Sony Michel ($5,800) / James White ($6,900)
Projected: 3X to 3.3X
Following a weekend slate of games, strong performances on Thursday night sometimes falls by the wayside. So while you may have had some short-term memory in regards to the Patriots, I’m suggesting that you keep their running backs in mind when constructing your Week 6 lineup. This week, the Patriots will have a Sunday night showdown against a Kansas City Chiefs team that is currently allowing the second most points to the position. With Rex Burkhead heading to the IR, the window of opportunity opened for Michel and he is certainly making the most of it. Over the last two weeks, the rookie back out of Georgia has had 210 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Then, there is Michel’s backfield mate, James White. The longtime Patriots’ back has finished with top 10 performances in each of the last two weeks. His success, much like Michel, is due in large part to the injuries on the depth chart. While Michel has led the way with carries, White has been the go-to back in the passing game. Since Week 4, White has caught 18 of 24 targets for 145 yards. As if that’s not enough, he has had a touchdown in all but one game this season. To be completely honest, with the Chiefs allowing the most receiving yards to running backs, I’m not even against starting both Michel and White in the same lineup.
Chris Carson ($4,400)
During the off-season, the Seattle Seahawks let it be known to those who would listen that they would commit more to the run. One of the ways they tried to convey that message was by spending a first-round pick on Rashaad Penny. While Penny has been one of the bigger first-round busts in recent memory, the Seahawks have still made an effort to run the ball. This weekend will be no different when Chris Carson and the Seahawks take on the Oakland Raiders in London. Over Carson’s last two games, he has been given 51 attempts and has posted two 100-yard performances. As far as his opponent, the Raiders are currently allowing the fourth most rushing yards to running backs and are also just one of five teams to allow five or more rushing scores. No one expected Mike Davis to be the back to compete with Carson for carries, and while Davis’ involvement may be a relevant argument, Carson is still the lead man in Seattle and I think he feasts on this Raiders front seven.
Honorable mention: Ezekiel Elliott vs. Jaguars, Marshawn Lynch vs. Seahawks, Nyheim Hines vs. Jets
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Mike Evans ($8,100)
That’s right, I’m doubling down on the return of Jameis Winston and suggesting that you stack him with Mike Evans. Over the first three weeks of the NFL season, Evans was on an absolute roll. During that time, Evans would average around 122 receiving yards and had a touchdown in each game. All of those numbers had Evans averaging 27.5 points per game. While Week 4 against the Bears ended up being a letdown, I’m a huge fan of the opportunity that awaits him this week. As previously mentioned, it will be the return of Jameis Winston as the Buccaneers take on a Falcons team that is allowing the fifth most points to the wide receiver position. They also stand as one of just two teams that have allowed double-digit touchdowns to the position. With the return of Winston, I’m expecting Evans to be targeted over 10 times and to score a touchdown.
AJ Green ($8,000)
Currently, AJ Green is thirteenth in scoring among wide receivers. After Week 5 resulted in his first 100-yard performance since November of last season, I like for Green to perform well again this week. This time he will go up against a Steelers defense that has been a liability as of late. So far in 2018, the Steelers are allowing the third-most points and the second most yards to the wide receiver position. On top of the Steelers struggling defensively this season, Green has almost always done well against his division rival. Throughout Green’s career, the Steelers are the only team in which he has had over 1,000 receiving yards against. As for Green this season, he currently is tied for the second most receiving touchdowns by a wide receiver with five and I say he adds to that this Sunday. The price is high on some of these wide receiver selections this week but I think you can do a lot worse than investing in Green.
Honorable mention: Tyler Boyd vs. Steelers, Tyreek Hill vs. Patriots, Tyler Lockett vs. Raiders, John Brown vs. Titans
Cameron Brate ($3,700)
As if it hasn’t been mentioned enough in this column, Jameis Winston is set to make his return in Week 6. That should benefit Cameron Brate who has always been one of Winston’s favorite targets. On top that, O.J. Howard is a limited participant in practice this week as he recovers from a sprained MCL. Initially, Howard was expected to miss two to four weeks with his injury so even if he winds up being available this weekend, I still expect Brate to handle a majority of the workload. The beginning of the season was not ideal for Brate as he would have zero receptions in each of the first two weeks. The Buccaneers pass catcher did bounce back with a touchdown in both Weeks 3 and 4. As far as the Falcons, their struggles on defense have been well documented but they have done well against the tight end position. Currently, the Falcons are the twelfth fewest points to the position but that being said, this selection has to do more so with Winston’s tendency to target Brate. I expect the Buccaneers tight end to score a touchdown for the third straight game.
Honorable mentions: Rob Gronkowski vs. Chiefs, Jimmy Graham vs. 49ers
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Thanks for reading
Mike is a hardcore fantasy football fan. He has been doing serious writing for a couple of years now and loves finding the next big sleeper that no one is talking about. He also isn’t afraid to go against the grain and predict the next big bust. The fantasy community is as strong as ever and Mike is ready to help you win a title!