QB: Ryan Tannehill – $10,466
Ryan Tannehill? Yes. Ryan Tannehill is a great play this week on DraftStreet if you’re looking to save some money at the quarterback position so you can spend your funds elsewhere.
San Diego’s pass defense currently ranks 28th in the league and if you combine that with the fact that they give up the third most fantasy points to quarterbacks, you can sit back and watch the points rack up for the low price of $10,466.
Tannehill’s worst fantasy game has been 14.2 points this season. Right now, he is as consistent as it gets if you’re looking in the QB2 range. The Dolphins RBs are struggling to run the ball, combining for a total of two yards Monday night against the Buccaneers. If Phillip Rivers starts slinging touchdowns, expect the Dolphins to lean on their passing game to try and keep up.
RB: Ray Rice – $7,542
Before you throw your arms up in disgust, hear me out! I’m just as annoyed with Rice as the next guy. He’s been a huge disappointment this year, no doubt about it. Seriously though… He’s only $7,542! You don’t need a 25 point game from someone who is that cheap, although, wouldn’t it be nice if it worked out that way? This is about value here.
Despite his struggles, Rice still gets the majority of the workload. He was in on 61% of the snaps compared to 31% for Pierce. On the 51 snaps that Rice was featured, he ran the ball 18 times and was targeted six times. That means when he was on the field, 47% of the time the ball was going to him in some way. You know who led the Ravens in receptions last week and was second in targets? You guessed it… Ray Rice! Right now the production isn’t there for Rice, but the workload is.
He’s up against the Bad News Bears 31st ranked rush defense who have surrendered the seventh most fantasy points to running backs. The last three weeks the Bears have given up 472 rushing yards and five touchdowns to opposing running backs. If I were a betting man (I am), I would bet my money that Ray Rice will have at least 100 total yards this week. Heck, he might even find the end zone.
WR: DeAndre Hopkins – $7,224
There were a few WR’s I liked this week for around this price. Some of those included Jarret Boykin, Marvin Jones, and Rueben Randle. But let me tell you why I settled on Hopkins. For starters, it comes down to playing time. From weeks 8-10 Hopkins has been in on 93% of the snaps for Houston. 77% for Boykin, 54% for Marvin Jones and 31% for Randle. If I’m going to gamble on someone, I at least want him to be on the field.
With Arian Foster out for the year and Ben Tate having four broken ribs, I’d expect the Texans to continue to let Keenum air it out (77 passes last two weeks, zero interceptions), especially against the Raiders 22nd ranked pass defense. They also allow the 7th most fantasy points to WR’s. Keep in mind, only two weeks ago they surrendered seven TDs through the air to the Eagles.
Since Keenum has taken over, Andre Johnson and Hopkins have had similar looks inside the red zone. Andre has six targets in the red zone and Hopkins has five. Last week they had similar targets as well, with 12 going to Andre and 11 to Hopkins. He’s getting plenty of looks, the chips just haven’t fallen his way yet. That could change this week.
TE: Greg Olsen – $7,462
When most people think of a Panthers receiver, I imagine Steve Smith immediately comes to mind. Me? I think Greg Olsen. Olsen and Smith are tied with three TDs each, and Olsen is right on Smith’s heels in receiving yards with 440 compared to Smith’s 450. They’re not far off from each other.
The Patriots have been fairly good against TEs this year, although they haven’t really faced great competition except for Jimmy Graham and Tony Gonzalez. They made a conscious effort to take Jimmy out of the game and kept him in check. Gonzo exploded for 149 yards and two TDs.
Now, I don’t expect Olsen to have Gonzo like numbers, but I could see him hauling in a touchdown. In the last three weeks, Olsen has five red zone targets to Steve Smith’s one. If Talib is back for the Patriots this week, Olsen should see a few more looks in this Monday night match up.