Gems Fit for A King: 10 Undervalued DFS Players
The return of the NFL this week also ushers in the welcome comeback of Daily Fantasy Sports to our lives. Like in regular redraft leagues, we’re all hoping our individual choices will lead us to glory by the time Monday Night Football finishes, but unlike those leagues we find ourselves almost hampered by too much choice.
After ranking players in the hope that they’ll fall to us, we now have every NFL offensive skill player to pick from. Sure, Aaron Rodgers (our second ranked fantasy QB) is hard to ignore as the best of the best. Yet, the need to find contrarian value picks is vital. To that end, I offer seven players that you should seriously think about getting in your DraftKings lineups and 3 ultimate bargains (premium only) this week who won’t cost you the earth, leaving you free to target a few serious big guns.
10.Marcus Mariota vs. Buccaneers
Draft Kings Price: $6000
A rookie is always a risky play, especially in his first ever start, but Mariota enjoyed a consistent preseason completing 70% of his passes at a healthy 10.9 yards per attempt. Tampa Bay, boasting a rookie signal caller of their own in Jameis Winston, allowed the 14th most fantasy points to quarterbacks in 2014, and haven’t exactly upgraded their defense going into the new season. With Colin Kaepernick, facing a much more daunting opponent in Minnesota, costing $1000 more than Mariota, he’s a low cost option that could pay off big.
9.Shane Vereen vs. Cowboys
Draft Kings Price: $4200
Seemingly behind Rashad Jennings and the plodding Andre Williams in the pecking order when it comes to rushes, Vereen is by far the best receiving option of the three. Including the playoffs, he hauled in 71 of his 93 targets for the Patriots last season, including eleven in the Super Bowl. He also rushed for 4.0 yards per carry, but given that the Giants should spend most of this matchup in arrears, Eli Manning should find himself needing his running back to open up some things for him in the passing game. The Cowboys surrendered nearly 19 fantasy points per game to running backs last season, and despite a potentially much improved pass rush, this is still a defense that can be picked apart. Vereen is a PPR Sleeper that could rack up some easy points.
8.John Brown vs. Saints
Draft Kings Price: $4500
The apple of many pundits eyes this offseason, Brown has shown impressive chemistry with Carson Palmer over the summer. While only catching five passes during the exhibition games, these grabs went for over 18 yards per reception. He’s a big play waiting to happen, and he couldn’t be facing a better opponent. The New Orleans Saints gave up 6 yards per play in 2014, and will be going into the game without their best cornerback in Keenan Lewis (hip injury) and safety Jairus Byrd. He may not see a ton of volume, but he offers plenty of upside even with limited opportunities.
Gridiron Experts DraftKings Gauntlet
Each week 12 Gridiron Experts writer’s will share their DraftKings Lineup with the public in a staff contest that will be stretched out over 16 weeks.
This mini tournament amongst our staff is for bragging rights but will also showcase each writer’s skills in Daily fantasy while helping our fanbase make decisions with their lineups.
7.Doug Martin vs. Titans
Draft Kings Price: $4500
Stop sniggering in the back, and hear me out. Occasionally, situation and opportunity can blind us into thinking a fugazi is a real diamond. More often than not, we discover the truth all too late. Martin, a fantasy stud in 2012 (despite producing in only four games) and a fantasy 1st round flop in 2013, owes his continued employment in Tampa to the new offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter. Martin had a strong showing in preseason, rushing twenty times for 118 yards (5.9 yards per carry), and forcing eight missed tackles, the exact same number he achieved on 135 attempts during the last regular season. The Titans were quite awful against the run last season, allowing the 2nd most fantasy points to running backs, and in a matchup between two really poor teams Martin could see ample opportunity to remind the fantasy and DFS communities of his existence.
6.Davante Adams vs. Bears
Draft Kings Price: $4400
OK, the good folks at DraftKings didn’t know that Jordy Nelson was going to get hurt when they released their week one prices. This tidbit should not, however, blind you into looking elsewhere out of pity. The Bears secondary has been horrid for many years now, and the Bears defense in general looks full of round pegs being jammed into the square holes of Vic Fangio’s 3-4 defense. With Nelson on the shelf, and Randall Cobb not quite at 100% after a shoulder injury suffered during the Packers preseason defeat to the Eagles, Adams should see plenty of targets, making him a low price, high volume option. Just don’t be stunned if he’s not this cheap in week 2.
5.Miami Dolphins Defense vs. Redskins
Draft Kings Price: $3000
Despite the addition of Ndamukong Suh, and a schedule that sees them facing Washington, Jacksonville, Buffalo, the Jets the Titans AND the Texans in their first six games, the Dolphins defense has not enjoyed full exposure in redraft leagues. It can currently be had in nearly 40% of NFL.com leagues . For their starter, they face a Washington team that gave up the second most fantasy points to team defenses in 2014, surrendering the second most sacks (58) and the fifth most defensive touchdowns (5). They took the decision to hand over the reins of their offense to Kirk Cousins, a man who has thrown at least one interception in ten of his 15 regular season appearances to date. This could get bloody early, and stay that way.
4.Tyler Eifert vs. Raiders
Draft Kings Price: $3500
One of the fast risers in redraft in the month between July 23rd and August 21st, Eifert was shaping up to be a big part of the Bengals offense in 2014 before injury floored him. He had 3 catches for 37 yards in the season opener before he went down. As much as Oakland’s defense figures to be improved from 2014, a campaign that saw them 11th in terms of fantasy points allowed to tight ends and 9th in the number of touchdowns scored by them, new head coach Jack Del Rio’s Broncos team allowed the 7th most fantasy points to the position in 2014. With AJ Green and Jeremy Hill likely to be the main focus of the Bengals offense, and thus the main focus of defensive gameplans, Eifert is all set to the second receiver on this team. You should think about snapping him up now, because his price will only go one way.[wlm_nonmember]
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Exclusive Members only Top Three Draft Kings Tips
3.Sam Bradford vs. Falcons
Draft Kings Price: $6,900
The Eagles do have to start the season on the road but had one of the best preseasons out of all NFL teams this past summer. Rust doesn’t look to be an issue and when picking DFS players early in the season, injuries and offensive rhythm is important.
The Falcons secondary isn’t anything to be afraid of, and more specifically, Atlanta and company will be without LB Brooks Reed. The Eagles should be able to run the ball successfully, but more importantly be able to the attack the middle of the field with Jordan Matthews (who lines up in the slot often) and/or Tight End Brent Celek, (who will be starting and see a large number of reps with Zach Ertz on the shelve).
The over/under for this Monday Night game is 55! Las Vegas expects a shootout and bang for buck Bradford is a bargain.
2.Chris Ivory vs. Browns
Draft Kings Cost: $4,100
This game isn’t the greatest matchup in the world, but for for those looking for a running back that will see the ball a lot and cost next to nothing… Ivory is your guy.
Ivory is Draft Kings 33rd RB. With the new coaching staff committed to running the ball, the sudden QB change and the fact that the Jets defense should create a few opportunistic turnovers setting up their offense in prime field position, there is a lot to like about Ivory in this game.
As long as the Jets get in the redzone, I’m confident Ivory smashes it home.
1.Eddie Royal vs. Packers
Draft Kings Cost: $3,900
Yes Royal is a little banged up, and yes his quarterback is very erratic, but the pure value of Royal at $3,900 is amazing.
There is a chance that Royal gets to start as WR1 for Chicago in this game, WR2 at the worst.
Jeffery sat out practice most of the week, casting doubt on his Week 1 availability. The Bears have revealed little about the injury in which he sustained in early August.
Royal and Cutler have chemistry from their time in Denver and should get back into rhythm quickly. Cutler has a (bad) habit of over targeting his favorite wide receivers and with the injuries mounting, Royal should see a high volume of throws.[/wlm_ismember]
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Neil’s been playing fantasy football for ten years, including a victory in 2014 in a league arranged by NFL.com Fantasy expert Adam Rank. Huge Philadelphia Eagles fan, and follows the fortunes of the England cricket team, usually with his head in his hands for both. Neil lives with his fiancé Kate and their daughter Zoe. He is an atrocious Words with Friends player.