The Fantasy Football Ghost gives us some insight into his top FanDuel NFL cash plays for Week 3.
Last week was filled with some highs, including Ty Montgomery who hit four times value, and Tom Brady who hit 3.35 times value, in addition to some unfortunate lows, namely Jimmy Graham at 0.10 times value and Jordan Howard at 0.09 times value. In my defense, Howard was injured and was unable to finish the game. All said, my players posted an average multiplier of 2.04. As I established last week, I would consider the week a success if the players mentioned were successful in averaging over two times value. The Howard and Graham performances hurt a lot but Brady, Montgomery, and Allen Hurns all cleared three times their value. On to bigger and better things in Week Three:
FanDuel Cash Plays for Week 3
DeShone Kizer – $6,900
DeShone Kizer is a relatively easy call this week. First, he is facing Indianapolis who made Jared Goff and Carson Palmer 300-yard passers to open the season. If that isn’t a huge reason to start Kizer, then there is little else I can say to convince you. In this young season, the Colts are already 29th in passing yards, and last season they were the 26th worst. RotoViz GLSP projections put Kizer in a range of 13.7-19.0 points. Even on the low end, Kizer is just a hair under the two times multiplier we’d consider successful for a cash play. On the upper end of the range he comes in as nearly three times his value. Finally, Kizer’s low price tag allows you to get cheap points while enabling you to pay up elsewhere.
Derek Carr – $8,400
Derek Carr made it all look all too easy, throwing for three touchdowns last week against the Jets. Now he faces off against a Washington defense that has allowed three passing TDs through two games. The Raiders are three-point favorites, but the 54 over/under is what really stands out. This game is projected to be the highest scoring of the entire slate and one of only two games pegged at over 50 points. Oakland’s implied point total is also the best of the slate at 28.5 points. If their distribution of TDs remains even somewhat intact, then look for Carr to throw at least two TDs. Passing yards shouldn’t be a problem as Washington has given up about 270 passing yards per game this season, up from 258 yards last year, the eighth worst total in the NFL.
C.J. Anderson – $6,900
C.J. Anderson looked impressive against Dallas en route to a monster 28.9 FanDuel points. Now, this isn’t just an instance of chasing points when I suggest Anderson again this week. The Bills’ defense hasn’t surrendered much in terms of rushing so far, but they haven’t faced an offense like Denver’s yet either. Last season Buffalo gave up the fourth most rushing yards in the league and the second most rushing TDs. The Bills surrendered the second most FanDuel points to RB1s as well, making them a prime target. Not just content to lose a game on the ground, the Bills also were exploited by running backs through the air, allowing 5.4 pass targets to the position for an average of 36.1 receiving yards. If the Broncos defense can stand even remotely as strong as it did against the Cowboys, then it could be a long day for the Bills, filled with clock-grinding rush attempts for Anderson.
Ameer Abdullah – $6,100
Ameer Abdullah has had a slow fantasy start despite being Detroit’s clear lead RB. It isn’t that he’s been horrible, he just hasn’t found a way to get into the end zone. That could all change this week as the Falcons come to town. Last week Ty Montgomery showed why you want to target any RB Atlanta faces. Last season the Falcons gave up the fourth most FanDuel point to RB1s, also ranking fourth worst in rushing defensive DVOA. The Falcons have allowed a rushing TD in each of their first two games. The interesting part to this matchup is how exploitable they are to RBs through the air. Yes, Theo Riddick is the Lions’ passing back, but Abdullah gets a fair share of his own targets as well. The Falcons ranked 25th against RB1s last year through the air, allowing an average of 9.1 targets per game for 53.4 receiving yards. Montgomery pulled in six receptions and scored a receiving TD against this same defense last week. The week before, Tarik Cohen racked up another eight receptions and scored a receiving TD, while Jordan Howard added another three receptions of his own in addition to a rushing TD. There are a whole lot of points to be had here if Detroit just follows the game plan their fellow NFC North brethren have laid out for them.
A.J. Green – $7,500 (2.21)
So far I’ve delivered several mid-range options, and now we’re going to spend some of that FanDuel cash we’ve saved. A.J. Green has made no secret of the fact that he is unhappy. He has yet to break 10 FanDuel points in a game, being held to five receptions per game while having yet to reach 75 receiving yards with no TDs. Cincinnati has already fired their offensive coordinator. This week the Bengals will need to show some life to stay in their game with the Packers. Luckily for Green, the Packers have had a lot of problems containing WR1s for quite some time. Last season they allowed a league leading 14.4 FanDuel points per game to WR1s. Over this period, they allowed 8.6 targets per game and gave up an average of 75 receiving yards. Last week, Julio Jones pulled in five receptions and posted 108 receiving yards. Look for Green to capitalize on this opportunity. His $7,500 dollar price tag, well off his $8,400 price on opening weekend, makes him an absolute steal.
Antonio Brown – $9,000
Much like the Green pick, we are paying up for some points here, but we can afford it given the money we’ve saved elsewhere. Chicago is one of the biggest underdogs on this slate, coming in at a projected 7.5 deficit. Last season the Bears had the sixth worst defensive DVOA against WR1s, allowing just under seven targets a game for 68.8 yards. They just surrendered an 18.8 game to Mike Evans. Additionally, Chicago has already allowed 251 receiving yards per game to opposing offenses, the ninth most in the NFL. Granted, Brown’s price is hefty – he’s the second most expensive wide receiver – but he only needs to hit 18 points to double his value, a mark he hit eight times last season. This own could turn ugly early and much of the carnage will come from Brown.
Jack Doyle – $5,300
We’re back to value players with Jack Doyle, but don’t be mistaken, he has one of the best matchups available — his opponent is the Browns. Last season the Browns were downright horrible against tight ends, ranking dead last in defensive DVOA to the position. Cleveland allowed 7.2 pass attempts to TEs last year, averaging 63.5 receiving yards. They were the second worst defense in the NFL in terms of FanDuel points given up to the position at 9.8 points surrendered per game. This season has already gotten worse for the Browns as they gave 19.1 points to Jesse James to open the season and then yielded another 13.1 points to Ben Watson. Strangely enough, Jack Doyle is the Colts top FanDuel scorer in 2017 with 8.5 points scored on average per game. Look for that total to possibly hit double digits following this game.
Austin Hooper – $5,400
Austin Hooper faced a tough match up for TEs last week when he faced the Packers defense, but he excelled in Week 1 versus the Bears. This week he has another favorable matchup against Detroit, who was the third worst team in the league, in terms of defensive DVOA, against TEs. The Lions allowed an average of 7.5 targets last year for 60.7 receiving yards. They surrendered an average of 8.4 FanDuel points to the TEs, ranking them the eighth most exploitable match up for the position. Evan Engram and the Giants took advantage of the Lions for four receptions, totaling 49 receiving yards and a TD, en route to a 12.9 point night. Given his $5,400 dollar price tag, Hooper could easily surpass two times value with three times value a possibility.