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NFL DFS Busts: Week 5

Week 5 Daily Fantasy Busts

Week 5 Daily Fantasy BustsBefore the season, if you had told me that the only undefeated team in the NFL would be the Kansas City Chiefs, the Patriots would be 2-2 (before their nail bitter with Tampa Bay Thursday night) and that the Bills and Rams would be 3-1 I would have laughed at you, but that is exactly where we are today in the NFL.

Week 5 is already upon us and the first rush of bye weeks is here as Atlanta, Denver, New Orleans, and Washington will be watching from the couch this week. This makes lineup construction a little more difficult and the choices for this week’s busts a little trickier, but hey, you come to us at Gridiron Experts for a reason and that reason is we give you the answers you’re looking for. The answer you want right now is, which three guys should I fade this week? So let’s get to it.

Last Week’s Bold Bust Calls

  1. Dez Bryant – 5 catches, 98 Yards  – Bryant didn’t have a complete dud of a day but was held in check for the most part. He was held without a touchdown and for under 100 yards. While he wasn’t locked down completely he still didn’t have that breakout performance many thought he would.
  1. Alex Smith –  27/37, 293 yards, 2 total TD – In the first half Smith and the Chiefs hadn’t accomplished a whole lot, but as the game continued, Smith and Chiefs were able to wear down a Redskins defense that committed 7 penalties, many of which kept drives alive for the Chiefs which led to Smith’s production.
  1. Matt Ryan – 242 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT, 1 fumble – Ryan made some great throws and the Falcons looked good at times. But as I expected, the Bills explosive defense made it tough on Ryan. They forced the MVP to cough up the ball and throw two interceptions.

DFS Busts Week 5

**Disclaimer: The takes within this article are my opinion only, they will not always represent the opinion of all staff here at Gridiron Experts. 

Bust #1

Antonio Brown, WR

Pittsburgh Steelers (FD: 8,800 – DK: 8,400)

  • Opponent: vs JAX
  • PIT Implied Total: 26.25
  • Gridiron Experts Week 5 Pos Rank: 4th

Antonio BrownAntonio Brown leads the NFL in receptions and yards after four games and has the second-most targets in the NFL. But, he is coming off his worst fantasy performance since week 6 of 2015 and he may be in for another tough week against Jacksonville.

Now, by making Brown my number one bust this week I am not suggesting that Antonio Brown is over the hill or that it’s time to trade your season-long shares of AB away for a younger guy. But, it is worth noting that he hasn’t been automatic so far this year. In fact, he has been the definition of boom or bust. He has been under 1.2 pt/$ in two games this season and over 3.0 pt/$ in the other two.

We shouldn’t be worried about AB long term but we should be worried when it comes to his quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. The 14-year pro was contemplating retirement this offseason but decided to come back for 2017. We know that Ben is worse on the road as he has a career win percentage at home of 76% but astonishingly that percentage dips all the way to 58% when Pittsburgh travels to opposing stadiums in essentially the same amount of games. But, the bottom line is he hasn’t been all that effective this season. He currently has a completion percentage of 62.1, his worst rate since 2010. He isn’t throwing the ball downfield as much either as his 6.8 yards per attempt average is the worst of his 14-year career.

Normally at home, Big Ben and AB are a lock and load, but against the Jaguars who have a top-ranked passing defense that allows the fewest fantasy points to WR, it may not be the time to plug in Brown hoping for a bounce-back performance.

  • The Jaguars have the best overall passing defense in the NFL only allowing 147 YPG
  • The Jaguars allow the 2nd fewest completions per game in the NFL at 17.8
  • The Jaguars have held QB to the 3rd worst QBR in the NFL at 65.5
  • Brown will get Jalen Ramsey coverage for a majority of the game. Ramsey is ranked the 3rd best CB in the NFL this season (89.1) according to Pro Football Focus
  • When Brown lines up on the opposite side of the field he will get A.J. Bouye who is ranked the 20th best CB in the NFL this season (82.7) according to Pro Football Focus

While the Jaguars are amongst the best in passing defenses they are the worst in rushing defense allowing 165.5 rushing yards per game. The Steelers clearly understand that Ben has struggled this season and the best way to improve the passing game is to establish the run. They have also shown that Le’Veon Bell is still their “bell cow” (pun intended). This game screams 25 plus carries for the Steelers’ workhorse and is currently projected to see some rain in the forecast.

Bust #2

Keenan Allen, WR

Los Angeles Chargers (FD: 7,500 – DK: 7,200)

  • Opponent: vs NYG
  • SD Implied Total: 20.25
  • Gridiron Experts Week 5 Pos Rank: 13th

Keenan Allen is a target monster when healthy. So far this season he has 9 or more targets in every game and had 11 last week against Philadelphia. Allen has topped 100 yards on two occasions and has been a great plug and play on Draft Kings this season. However, this week Allen may not pay owners dividends as he has his toughest matchup since his week 1 when he lined up against that stout Broncos defense.

This week, the Chargers travel across country to New York to play the Giants in a game that could go a few different ways. The Giants are -4 favorites and went no-huddle last week more than any other team in the NFL. The Giants are finding ways to succeed on offense with a sub-par offensive line and non-existent running game. Their most recent attempt has been preventing opposing defenses from subbing and running up-tempo.

With the emergence of Wayne Gallman at running back and the fact that Los Angeles has the 2nd worst rushing defense in the NFL (163.5 YPG) the Giants may look to build some chemistry and hope to finally establish the run for the first time this season.

On the flipside of this one, the Chargers ran the 4th fewest amount of snaps last week. On top of that, the Giants are ranked 28th against the run. The Chargers will most likely look to blast Melvin Gordon into royal blue uniforms close to 20 times, especially after Gordon told ESPN that he was “Super Frustrated” with the number of touches he received last week.  With both teams desperately needing a win I see this being a slow-paced ground and pound type game on both sides.

  • Allen will get Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie in the slot, who is currently ranked the 35th in CB the NFL according to Pro Football Focus.
  • Janoris Jenkins has shadowed Dez Bryant and Mike Evans already this season, so it is not out of the question that he may creep down into the slot and play against Allen this week
  • In weeks that Jenkins has shadowed, he is only allowed 3 catches for 57 yards
  • Jenkins is regarded as one of the best corners in the NFL today and is currently ranked 28th by Pro Football Focus

Bust #3

Leonard Fournette, RB

Jacksonville Jaguars (FD: 7,900 – DK: 7,000)

  • Opponent: vs  PIT
  • JAX Implied Total: 17.7
  • Gridiron Experts Week 4 Pos Rank: 7th

The rookie out of LSU burst onto the NFL scene by storm saying that his first preseason game was “really easy.” He put his money where his mouth was week one, hitting the 100-yard mark and finding the end zone for a successful pro debut. Since then Fournette would have had dismal fantasy returns had he not found the end zone in all four of his games.

I already talked about Antonio Brown in this very contest and mentioned that Pittsburgh will most likely let Le’Veon Bell tote the rock as many times as he can handle. In turn, this means that Jacksonville would have the ball less.

On top of this, Fournette is nursing an ankle injury and has found himself on the injury report for the first time since Week 1. Fournette told reporters that his preseason injury involved his foot/toe area and wasn’t related to his ankle issue that shortened his final season at LSU. We aren’t sure of the severity of the injury but it is something we should keep an eye on.

  • Pro Football Focus gives Jacksonville’s offensive line a 14% downgrade when running the ball this week
  • Both offenses rank bottom-half in second-per-snap pace, and their optimal gameplans won’t speed things up, meaning less plays and less overall production
  • The Steelers are 8.5 point favorites in this game, if our friends in Vegas are correct, the Jaguars should be behind in this game and we will see more of vintage garbage time Blake Bortles
  • Yes, Fournette accumulated 28 touches last week but the game went into overtime, he had 20 and 19 in weeks 3 and 4

This is just not an appealing spot for Fournette. Ankle injuries are always worrisome for running backs who need to cut, burst and make sudden movements all the time. Not to mention defenders will often take a bruising back like Fournette down by going low and grabbing onto his ankles. Not only does the injury scare me but the implied total and probable game script does as well.

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Nick Olson

Nick Olson

Nick is a 15-year fantasy football veteran with countless season-long fantasy titles and championship trophies. He is a high school football coach in the state of Wisconsin and has also coached Championship semi-pro football teams. He is an offensive playcaller that lives for film study. Not only does he study his opponents in Wisconsin, he studies NFL film and accompanies that with data, analytics, and his scouting knowledge to make his fantasy decisions. He co-hosts the acclaimed fantasy football podcast "The Coach and Cole Show" on Blog Talk Radio with his lifelong friend and sports fanatic Cole Fouts. Beyond football, he writes on the St. Louis Blues for St.Louis Gametime and is an NHL DFS analyst.

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