Daily Fantasy

DraftKings Chalk, Pivots & Punts: Week 5

Minnesota Vikings (21.75/+3) at Philadelphia Eagles (24.75/-3) [46.5]

Stefon DiggsThe Eagles have allowed big games to opponent outside WRs Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Desean Jackson, and Corey Davis. Stefon Diggs ($7000) is in this tier of receiver talent, and should this trend continue he is in for a big day. Adam Thielen ($7700) is the pricier option in this match-up, but he has been balling out all year going over 100 yards in every game, and he does not have an imposing match-up against Sidney Jones in the slot. Both guys need to be in your player pool this week, though I lean a little toward Diggs for the discount. The Eagles shut down running games, and the Vikes have yet to get theirs going. Leave the MIN RBs out of the pool this week, even if Cook misses the game.

Minnesota’s vaunted defense got dismantled last week versus the Rams. The Eagles are another team with creative play calling and a good group of offense weapons to work with, and they are at home for this game. The battery of this offense is Carson Wentz ($5800) to Zach Ertz ($6500) which is a stack to consider on a weekly basis. Kittle and Graham have both gone for 15 points and 90 yards against the Vikings, so I’ll have interest in Ertz this week. The best WR match-up might be Nelson Agholor ($5300) against 1st round rookie Mike Hughes in the slot. Alshon Jeffery ($6200) will get the Xavier Rhodes shadow treatment and is less appealing for me. Minnesota has been playing solid against the run again this year, so no reason to go chasing anything out of this 3 headed backfield.

Baltimore Ravens (24.25/-3.5) at Cleveland Browns (20.75/+3.5) [45]

Both of these teams run a lot of plays per game, granted Cleveland looks better due to a couple OT games. Still, the Ravens are the NFL leader in plays per game, so we always have to look at them for opportunities. Cleveland has struggled with #1 WRs, which going off snap counts and targets is Michael Crabtree ($5100) for the Ravens. Crabtree hasn’t had any good games yet this year, but with Terrence Mitchell out with a broken arm, he’ll get a chance to feast on E.J. Gaines this week. John Brown ($5600) will see a lot of 4th overall pick Denzel Ward which is going to be a bit tougher of a match-up when deciding between the WRs this week. Brown has demonstrated higher upside this year, so I’m still likelier to take my chances on him, but will trust the match-ups and get some Crabtree into my line-ups as well. The lowest score the Browns have allowed to an opposing RB1 this year is 17.9 to Kamara, and they have allowed right around 19 points each to Powell and Lynch who are in more of a committee backfield like Alex Collins ($5000) is. Collins finally took the snap count lead over Javorius Allen ($4700) last week, but they still split carries almost equally in that game, with Allen getting the extra red zone carry (4 to 3). This is likely to continue being a cannibalizing backfield limiting upside for either guy. I’ll avoid again this week.

Baker Mayfield’s ($5300) debut as a starting NFL QB had it’s ups and downs. This time he’ll get to make a start back in Cleveland against a stingy defense getting one of their top corners back this week. The Ravens are 4th in the NFL in both fewest passing and rushing yards allowed. There is not much that interests me on this side of the game, but those 20+ implied points have to come from somewhere. Duke Johnson ($3900) is really cheap and might be the only one worth considering if you need a punt RB this week.

New York Giants (18.5/+6.5) at Carolina Panthers (25.0/-6.5) [43.5]

Saquon Barkley GiantsCarolina got an early bye week this year, which can be a benfit from a coaching perspective. You get your 4 weeks of preseason to see who makes the roster, then another 3 weeks of regular season to see what’s working or not. Coaches can use that early bye week to recalibrate, build on their playbook, and spend two weeks preparing for their opponent who just took hits last week. Perhaps this is why the line on this game is so skewed toward the Panthers. I figured it would be closer to even, but it has moved a half point toward NYG and drop a point on the total since Tuesday. All that said, NY is a bit banged up and has an offense concentrated on three players right now: RB Saquon Barkley ($7700), WR Odell Beckham ($8000), and Sterling Shepard ($5600). Carolina typically has a strong run defense, but did allow Tevin Coleman to run for 100+ a couple weeks ago. Barkley is as talented as any back in the league, and if NYG wants to keep the pace of this game in their favor, they will need to lean on him. The two WRs have match-ups they can beat with OBJ likely seeing a lot of the Bradberry Blanket and Shepard inside against Captain Munnerlyn. Beckham made comments about the team not playing with heart an energy and not being able to throw deep, which is concerning if he’s just whining and nothing changes. Or, perhaps he’s hinting at something they have corrected in practice and meetings this week and plan to reverse that. Either way, it does have me a bit hesitant to play any Giants this week. I like Shepard’s price and match-up, so I might have a few shares of him. I’d really like to play OBJ in this game, so I’ll keep an eye on Giants twitter to see if this situation gets toxic and becomes an all-out avoid situation.

The lowest point total NYG has allowed to an RB1 this year is 14.1, a that was to Lamar Miller who does not catch many passes. Christian McCaffrey ($8000) should be in for a big game this week. There are two QBs I always consider regardless of match-up and that’s Russell Wilson and Cam Newton ($6400). I prefer to get these guys when they’re priced down, so depending on how roster constructions goes, I’m keeping Cam in my pool as a pivot play, especially considering the Giants struggles against Prescott on zone-read plays 2 weeks ago. The Giants have been strong pass defenders this year, and Carolina has no “must play” pass catchers, leaving Cam and CMC as the only ones I’ll have interest in here.


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Denver Broncos (20.75/+1) at New York Jets (21.75/-1) [42.5]

It is no secret that the Jets are getting ripped by slot WRs which is going to put Manny Sanders ($7100) in chalk territory. He’s a solid piece to build with this week, so don’t fade him completely to be contrarian. The Jets are actually favored by a point in this game, apparently, Vegas thinks both teams will be duking this one out until the end. The Jets will be without CB Trumaine Johnson this week putting fantasy disappointment Demaryius Thomas ($5600) back on my radar. The Jets are allowing 100+ rushing yards per game and have given up two 20+ point games to an RB already this season. Royce Freeman ($4200) is still free on DK, and is coming off a big game against the Chiefs last week. HC Vance Joseph says they need to get his snaps up, and OC Bill Musgrave says they need to “take the training wheels off” he and fellow rookie Phillip Lindsay ($4800). I prefer Freeman to Lindsay this week because I think he has a good chance at a multi-TD game, but both guys should be considered in a good spot this week. The Jets may also be without their defensive coordinator who has a serious illness leaving head coach Todd Bowles with defensive play-calling duties. This could be a distraction, and could make Denver offensive players slightly better plays this week.

The only Jet I have any interest in most weeks is Quincy Enunwa ($5200), but there are just better options in this price range I prefer over him this week, so it’ll be a pass on the Jets for me.

Arizona Cardinals (18.25/+4.5) at San Francisco 49ers (22.75/-4.5) [41]

George Kittle 49ersGeorge Kittle ($5400) and Matt Breida ($5700) are the only ones providing a pulse for this injury-depleted Niners offense. The Cards can’t stop the run, allowing the second most yards per game on the ground with 141 and a league-high 1.8 rushing TDs per game. Breida is priced nicely for this match-up and needs to be considered as the Niners return home after a couple weeks away. Breida has only been good for 3 targets and 10 carries per game so far, but his 63% snap share compared to Alfred Morris’s 23% in week 4 is a sign that he should be getting more involved going forward. His efficiency has been solid, breaking off several big plays per game. He should be able to put up an 18+ point game against the Cardinal defense. The Niners OL all being back to healthy is an added boost for Breida and the pass protection. Kittle also appears to be in a pretty decent spot this week just based on his raw volume. Arizona has allowed a 14.8 game to Jordan Reed and a 9.5 point game to a less targeted Trey Burton. Kittle’s floor is probably 10 points, but his ceiling was put on display last week with a 27.5 DK point game. He is the 3rd highest priced TE this week though, which is tough to pay up for but could also mean he’ll be low owned as a pivot down from Ertz or Kelce.

The Niners defense has been lit up in the passing game to start the year, but this has been a result of injuries in the secondary, poor tackling, and facing some upper-level QBs along the way. The health and improvement of the young guys in the secondary is yet to be seen, but rookie Josh Rosen is not a high-end NFL QB yet either. That makes it hard to trust any of the receiving options for the Cards here. David Johnson ($6300) has put together two solid games in a row now, and we saw Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler destroy the Niners run defense last week. Johnson could continue to put up solid numbers as the Cards try to keep Rosen on schedule in a road rivalry game.

Tennessee Titans (23.0/-6) at Buffalo Bills (16.5/+6) [39.5]

This game has moved 2.5 points in the Titans favor since Tuesday and could get ugly for the Bills. Buffalo isn’t going to surprise anyone after they caught Minnesota off guard a couple weeks ago. Corey Davis ($6400) has been the main attraction in the Titan offense, almost doubling the targets of Dion Lewis ($5400) who is second on the team with a 39 to 21 advantage. Both of these guys are the top plays this week if you’re looking to get in on the game with the lowest point total of the week.  Derrick Henry ($4400) has yet to get going this year, so this could be a coming out party for him as a cheap pivot option. Henry could get extra snaps if this one gets away from the Bills early and Tennessee starts grinding down the clock. Taywan Taylor ($4000) working the middle of the field where Buffalo has been particularly vulnerable is a cheap punt option at WR.

Hard to get excited about playing anyone on an offense that is a six-point home dog and has a 16.5 implied total. I guess you could punt at QB with Josh Allen ($4800) if you’re roster construction calls for that. Tennesse has seen a lot of mobile QBs already this year, so he won’t catch them off guard here. However, playing from desperation mode late in the game could put him in 2016 Blake Bortles company and he could pay that salary off with a 16-18 point game.

Thanks for reading and be sure to check back next week!


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Good Luck This Week!

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