Season long fantasy football can be a grind in itself, but compared to Daily Fantasy Sports, and especially Daily Fantasy Football, it is a cakewalk. If you are serious about playing DFS on Draft Kings and Fanduel from now through January, this will be the column you will want to visit each and every week.
The allure of playing bigger tournaments is the main draw of DFS, it really is, but making sure your bankroll is consistently growing and stable is the long-term route to success. My goal of this column is pretty simple; provide a cash game lineup for the upcoming week that will help you become a winner. I will provide my exact plays for both the main slate of Fanduel and Draft Kings for that given week. It is up to you to use this information accordingly if you decide to play a different slate of games besides the main slate.
Every week I will list players I believe will perform to the level to ensure you a win in pretty much any ‘double up’ or 50/50 contest. This article will come out each Wednesday, so while I will provide information on each player I am putting into the starting lineup, some injury information of course will be far from decided that early in the week. Below the lineup I will list a couple pivots (possibly players to switch to) if this is in fact the case. Most importantly, I will be playing this exact lineup myself each and every week.
Let’s get started:
QB Philip Rivers (6400) – Rivers has not had great success vs Bob Sutton defenses in the past, but the Chiefs secondary has a lot to prove. With his full arsenal at his disposal and the total for the game at 48, expect plenty of points in this one.
RB Christian McCaffrey (6400) – The Panthers offensive line has issues and it is up against a stacked Cowboys pass rush. Expect plenty of screens, draws and short passes by this offense. Perfectly in line with what CMC does best in a full PPR format. He is going to take on a major workload early on in the season.
RB James White (4000) – We don’t know a lot about the Patriots offense heading into Week 1, but we do know White will have a major role. The Texans are going to be bringing the heat to get to Brady and White is the perfect outlet. He garnered 6 targets in one half of football vs the Eagles in the pre-season with Brady in the game. He creates salary relief priced at only 4000 and has a good chance to be used in the redzone being the only running back that has consistently practiced during those practice periods during training camp.
WR Keenan Allen (7500) – Allen will be used all over the field in this game even if Kendall Fuller is matched up with him. Allen is an elite talent and pass catcher that can beat any corner in football. Expect a line around 9 catches, 120 yards and a score.
WR Stefon Diggs (6300) – The 49ers secondary has not impressed me and will be tested in this one. Kirk Cousins has the best rapport with Diggs of any of his pass catchers thus far. When Diggs has stayed off the injury report over the last two years, the only wide receivers he trails in full PPR points per game are named Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham Jr, Keenan Allen and Julio Jones.
WR A.J. Green (7300) – I am loading up on pass catchers vs secondaries that can be exploited. Green might not even be that popular of play, but he is motivated and is playing in the game with the 3rd highest total of the week (48.5).
TE O.J. Howard (3100) – Possibly the only risk on this list, but he has looked tremendous and has out-snapped Cameron Brate in the pre-season. The Bucs will be heaving it around the yard plenty on Sunday trying to play catch up in the dome vs the Saints. He is one of my breakout players of the 2018 season, so let’s jump on him early before his price inevitably rises.
Flex WR Emmanuel Sanders (5000) – A true bargain for the WR1 right now in Denver. Case Keenum trusts him the most and by all reports Sanders is in store for a bounce back season. He fits the system well in Denver and the Seahawks secondary is no longer one to be feared.
DEF Ravens (3800) – I am going to ‘defend’ on this one. That is, they will be the highest owned defense and we are not going to come up on the short end of the stick this week because we played a slightly cheaper defense, just to watch Nathan Peterson throw 3 interceptions.
QB Philip Rivers (7500)
RB Alvin Kamara (8700) – He will be the most popular play this weekend on both sites and he will be well worth it. On Fanduel he is much easier to fit into a lineup and more valuable due to the fact he is only 1000-1500 more expensive than the other ‘elite’ RB targets as opposed to 2000+ more expensive than the likes of Christian McCaffrey on Draftkings.
RB Alex Collins (6700) – A good value for a guy that is likely to have game-flow in his favor. The Ravens should pound the rock at home with Collins getting into the endzone at least once.
WR Keenan Allen (8000)
WR Jarvis Landry (6600) – The Browns have a great chance to pull the upset at home on Sunday, Landry will be a big factor in that. Tyrod Taylor will lean on him in his first game as a Brown as others get acclimate to the offense.
WR Emmanuel Sanders (6300)
TE O.J. Howard – I still like him as the 10th most expensive TE on Fanduel this week. On DK he is the 18th most expensive, indicative of the kind of value you are getting.
Flex RB Kenyan Drake – I am not the least bit worried about Frank Gore honestly. Drake is a dynamic player regardless and with fresh legs, he might reach value here on 15 touches. I like Miami to pull the upset over the Titans Sunday with Drake playing a major factor.
DEF Cardinals – I like the upgrade at FLEX so much more when not paying up for a defense on FD. Alex Smith is not known for turnovers but expect the Cards to be aggressive and test the QB in his first game in a new system, on the road. Smith did throw 4 INTs in his last three road games of 2017.
I don’t believe any pivots are necessary this week, since we have pretty much all the injury information we need heading into week number one.
Thanks for reading and be sure to follow my twitter account @JohnnyLFootball . Whether it relates to handicapping, DFS or starting lineup decisions for your season long league, I am always a tweet away to answer your questions.
See you next Wednesday on THE GRIND.