Week 10 is upon us, and the heavy bye weeks have passed, so we’ll have larger slates from here on out. Dez has finally found a home, and Josh McCown is quarterbacking the Jets this weekend against Buffalo. What to make of all this? We’ll delve deeply into the plays at FTA+ for both cash and GPPs, and make sure to join us in chat as we constantly analyze the changing landscape. I can also be found on twitter @jac3600. See all our subs tonight in NBA chat, and we have a Thursday NFL game as well!
Aaron Rodgers, GB ($8600)
Patrick Mahomes deserves his price tag completely, but it’s just out of control for cash games. If you’re in the upper echelon, Rodgers would be the guy I’d go to, as he still commands over an 80% market share of the Packers’ TDs. Rodgers is historically much better at home, averaging almost three more FPPG in Lambeau than on the road. Miami has allowed 8.2 YPA this season, which is the third highest in the league. Geronimo Allison was placed on IR, but Rodgers otherwise has a healthy component of WRs and a dynamic RB who is finally taking over the lead. There’s massive upside here and a solid floor with his rushing.
Other options – Patrick Mahomes, Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Jared Goff, Drew Brees
Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB ($7600)
Playing the TB quarterbacks in cash is not for the faint of heart, as I’ve found out the hard way at least once this season. The ever-present “quarterback change” always looms, but Fitzpatrick’s volume is just so high that it’s hard to imagine he doesn’t pay off his mid-tier price tag here. Despite the QB carousel, Tampa Bay still ranks fourth in the NFL in YPA, and Washington’s defensive rankings have been plummeting. Early ownership projections seem to have him as chalk which makes him a viable cash option, but be careful taking an overweight approach in GPPs.
Other options – Andy Dalton, Andrew Luck, Mitchell Trubisky, Alex Smith
Josh McCown, NYJ ($6000)
I will have many GPPs that load up on the top skill players, and McCown will likely be the QB on all those teams. McCown is 39 years old and has a long injury history, so there’s no room for him in cash. However, he has proven rapport with several of these Jets WRs (most notably Robby Anderson) and his presence improves the outlook for the entire Jets offense given how poorly Sam Darnold has been playing. The Bills are a solid defensive unit as a whole, but McCown is a min-priced QB with upside.
Other options – Blake Bortles, Marcus Mariota, Derek Carr
Todd Gurley, LAR ($10,800)
Week 12 is the only time you won’t see Gurley’s name at the top (when the Rams are on bye). I still have no interest in his price tag for cash (DK he’s a lock once again as his price inexplicably continues to drop). Load up on Gurley in GPPs.
SECONDARY TOP PLAY
Melvin Gordon, LAC ($8900)
Gordon is a cash play I want to prioritize this week. The Chargers offensive line now ranks in the top five according to Football Outsiders, and it’s led to a career high 5.4 YPC for Gordon. He’s also one of the few RBs in the league that is a legitimate bellcow (84% of carries, 21% MS of targets last week) and the Chargers have in implied total of 30.5 points against the lowly Raiders. They’re also 11-point favorites, so the game script really can’t get much better for Gordon here. He’s the safest “non-Gurley” play on the board for me this week.
Other options – Kareem Hunt, Alvin Kamara
James White, NE ($7800)
White’s rushing floor gets dinged a bit this week with Sony Michel expected to return, but his involvement in the passing game rivals any back in the league, and beats most of them. White has only had less than 7 targets once this season, and he’s had over double digit targets in four games. With a positive game script, and a whole mess of questionable NE pass catchers (most notably Gronkowski), there is almost no way White’s floor busts against Tennessee.
Other options – Joe Mixon, Marlon Mack, Leonard Fournette
Nick Chubb/Duke Johnson, CLE ($6600/$5600)
You can’t pull the trigger on Duke in cash games after just one week under the new coaching staff, but this is the matchup that is as elite as it comes for opposing RBs. As I’ve stated many times this year, Atlanta’s zone coverage is purposely designed to funnel passing opportunities to RBs and TEs, and they’ve now allowed by far the most targets to opposing RBs for the second straight year. Duke is more of a play on DK where it’s full PPR, but Chubb is the more intriguing option on FD. Since Carlos Hyde was traded, Chubb has garnered 84% of the team’s carries, and even negative game scripts haven’t affected him. He was a capable pass-catching back in college, so there’s even room for a little additional upside for him to get into the act against the Falcons. He’s a fine cash play on this slate.
Other options – David Johnson, Adrian Peterson, Kerryon Johnson, LeSean McCoy, Dion Lewis, Peyton Barber
Michael Thomas, NO ($8600)
Thomas’ efficiency is bonkers this season. He’s currently rocking an 88.6% catch rate which is absolutely ridiculous, and we get to see him take on a Bengals squad that has allowed the most passing YPG (319) this season. Even with the addition of Dez Bryant, the Saints’ passing offense has been condensed to Thomas and Alvin Kamara all year, and with a 7-1 record they’re not changing their system. Thomas does only have two TDs over the last six weeks, but his targets and efficiency more than make up for it.
Other options – Julio Jones, Davante Adams
Keenan Allen, LAC ($7900)
People have been noticeably frustrated with Julio Jones’ lack of TDs once again (caught his first last week), but it also bears mentioning that Allen is experiencing a lot of the same limitations with only one score this season. That said, Allen is consistently involved in the passing game and has a 27% market share against a Raiders squad that now ranks 28th in DVOA pass defense. Gordon is still the Charger I want this weekend, but Allen carries a solid floor week in and week out.
Other options – Tyreek Hill, Tyler Boyd, Robert Woods, Mike Evans, Julian Edelman
Jarvis Landry, CLE ($6400)
I’ve used Landry almost every week, and sometimes it’s paid off and sometimes it hasn’t. Once again, I can’t see fading him given the matchup he has, and his price is now at its lowest point of the season. Landry is averaging over 11 targets per game, and the Falcons rank dead last in DVOA against #1 WRs. The big knock on Landry in Miami was his lack of involvement in the red zone, but that could not be more different in Cleveland, as he ranks fifth in the NFL in RZ market share with almost a 45% mark. I’m drinking the Kool-Aid once again.
Other options – Josh Gordon, Sammy Watkins, Cooper Kupp, Marvin Jones, Kenny Golladay, Marqez Valdes-Scantling, Corey Davis, Josh Doctson
Travis Kelce, KC ($8000)
Kelce obliterates the competition at the TE position, but I just can’s spend this money in cash. However, if you do take the plunge, here are some positives. The Cardinals rank 23rd in DVOA against the TE position and are last in time of possession (and the Chiefs are first). This should lead to MANY scoring opportunities for KC, and they have the highest implied total on the slate at almost 34 points which is crazy. Kelce should eat, but it’s just a matter of being willing to pay his price tag when there are several good value plays at the position.
Other options – Jimmy Graham, Trey Burton
Jordan Reed, WAS ($5200)
Reed hurt me last week in what should have been a great matchup, but I’m going back to the well again. Tampa Bay has ranked last in DVOA pass defense all season, and you have to have a piece of Washington’s passing attack in cash, no matter who it may be. You have to look past the fact that Reed has failed to eclipse 50 yards in five straight weeks and focus on the realization that he also has 34 targets in that span (which is seven per game). TB can’t stop anyone, and Reed is a sharp way to get cheaper exposure to that.
Other options – Austin Hooper, Jared Cook, Jack Doyle, David Njoku
TOP FIVE DEFENSES FOR CASH
- Kansas City Chiefs ($4600)
- Green Bay Packers ($3900)
- New York Jets ($4900 – consider moving them up to 1st or 2nd if Nathan Peterman is indeed still the QB)
- Atlanta Falcons ($3800)
- Los Angeles Rams ($3900)