Welcome to another edition of the 2019 Confident Cash Plays Series!
Hopefully you plugged in a few cash lineups last weekend! There were several lineups from our player pool that racked up over 230 points! And the optimal lineup from the pool was over 247 points! Let’s see if we can make it four strong weeks in a row to start the year!
Like I’ve said before, this is the perfect place to break down a player pool of the best plays in college football to make sure you cash in the main slate this weekend! If you like GPP contests, Ryan Collinsworth has a piece for you every week as well! But for now, let’s dive into this week’s Confident Cash Plays!
It’s not every week that the main slate provides us with three elite quarterback options. But this week, Spencer Sanders ($9,300, Oklahoma State), Justin Fields ($9,200, Ohio State), and Tua Tagovailoa ($9,000, Alabama) are all averaging over 30 DraftKings points per week!
All three are quarterbacking huge Vegas favorites this week. All three teams have been given at least 39 implied points. And they all boast some of the best weekly opportunity/efficiency combinations at quarterback in the nation.
|Player||Average PassAtt+RushAtt/Game||Adjusted Yds/PA||Pass TD%|
On top of those ridiculous numbers, my projection model that accounts for average weekly score, implied points, opposing defensive matchup, and price expects a floor of at least 25 DK points from all three. It’s going to be hard not to start one of these guys in cash.
If you have to choose between them Tagovailoa is likely the best value given his skill position players, cheaper price, and easiest matchup against a South Carolina team that’s already giving up 220 passing yards a week against much softer competition. Yes, they’re the “duh” options, but everyone on the main slate will be starting one of them. If you miss out, good luck.
There is a massive gap between the top tier quarterbacks and the next option that makes any sense to start from a value standpoint. However, the few value pairings that are worth a stab in cash are definitely winners.
For some reason, Draft Kings didn’t learn from last week at all with their cheap quarterback options. Josh Jackson ($6,600, Maryland) only saw a $100 increase in price despite posting his second consecutive performance with at least 23 fantasy points. Now he draws an unproven Temple defense that’s only played Bucknell so far this season. Plus, the Maryland vs. Temple game has the highest over/under on the entire slate, and for good reason. Jackson’s tossed seven touchdowns in two games. And Anthony Russo ($6,200, Temple) tossed the rock 41 times in Week 1 against Bucknell. Both offenses run a ton of plays. Both teams should easily break 25 points scored, if not 30. That implied outcome alone makes both quarterbacks a value this week.
Russo might be the most intriguing quarterback on the entire slate though. He dropped 35 points in Week 1, but it was against Bucknell. But he could certainly come close to repeating. Why? He has three wide receivers that he targeted 12 times each (we’ll get to that shortly) in Week 1 that are all a threat to add YAC. And somehow all three of those receivers are $5,200 or below despite receiving a dozen targets last game. If drafters can pair Russo with the 12-target right receiver that should put together an elite, cheap, low percentage owned stack that sets a lineup apart.
The other cheap option that Draft Kings is clearly just disrespecting is Nate Stanley ($6,000, Iowa). Stanley has two weeks of 22 or more fantasy points already. Now he gets to face an Iowa State defense that just struggled to defeat FCS Northern Iowa, allowing a couple touchdowns and 228 passing yards. Using the same projection model I mentioned in the elite quarterback tier Stanley’s floor should be just over 18 points this week. That kind of floor at $6,000 is just stealing candy from a baby for cash lineups. Stanley would allow you to fill out lineups nicely at skill positions, but definitely represents the lowest upside of the bunch.
Priority: (1) Tagovailoa, (2) Fields, (3) Sanders, (4) Russo, (5) Jackson, (6) Stanley
Four of the top seven most expensive running backs are absolutely horrible values at their price this week, so tread carefully. Eno Benjamin ($7,500, Arizona State) faces a Michigan State defense allowing negative rushing yards per game and his offensive line has been bad already against worst teams. Connor Heyward ($7,200, Michigan State) and Stephen Carr ($7,000, USC) aren’t even the lead backs on their own team and the actual starters are much cheaper. And then Stevie Scott III ($7,000, Indiana) faces an Ohio State defense only allowing 64 rushing yards per game. Hard passes all around.
Let’s take a look at the three expensive options to consider:
|Player||Week 3 Salary||Touches/Game||Average Fpoints/Game||Implied Week 3 Team Points||Opponent Rush Yds Allowed/Game|
Chuba Hubbard’s touches per game should actually be much higher, but Oklahoma State took their foot off the gas pedal early against McNeese State last week. Tulsa should (in theory) be able to stick with Oklahoma State for a little longer, requiring Hubbard’s services for more than the five seconds he was on the field a week ago. If he does indeed stay on the field for a full normal week’s workload (20-plus touches) then Hubbard’s price absolutely makes sense. However, if you want to squeeze a better QB2 or WR3 into the roster and pivot off the early benching risk then there are only two other top options to trust.
J.K. Dobbins has two weeks under his belt with at least 18 touches already, and shouldn’t see any less work against Indiana this week. Yes, the Hoosiers have been stiff against the run early, but news broke that they could be without starting quarterback Michael Penix Jr. on Saturday. Either way, he likely won’t be 100% healthy. That should breed a game script for an early Ohio State lead and a Dobbins feast. With 39 implied points for The Ohio State Buckeyes and a projected floor of nearly 17 points (using my aforementioned four-variable projection model), Dobbins is about as cashy as you can get this week.
Kylin Hill isn’t just everyone’s favorite devy darling. He’s essentially the entire offense for Mississippi State. And by extension that makes him a 22-touch per game monster on a 7.5-point favorite this weekend. Oh, and K-State has given up over 100 rushing yards per game to college football powerhouses, Nicholls State and Bowling Green State, so far. Yikes. Enjoy the 16-point floor and 30-point upside!
Just like last week, there are some great values at running back, but not quite as many. Let’s check out the opportunity on these $6000 and cheaper options:
|Running Back||Week 3 Salary||Touches/Game||Yards/Touch||Average FPoints/Game||Implied Week 3 Team Points||Opponent Rush Yds/Game|
|Adrian Killins Jr.||5600||12||9||21.9||34.5||104|
|Brian Robinson Jr.||5200||10.5||3.8||7.5||43.5||155|
Vavae Malepeai is somehow $1,000 cheaper than his teammate Stephen Carr, despite out-touching him 39-19 through two weeks. When you combine his opportunity with the fact that BYU is quite possibly the worst run defense in the nation, Malepeai should be in every single cash lineup possible at $6,000. My projection model has him finishing as the overall main slate RB1 this week for $1,500 less than any of the other top tier backs.
Adrian Killins Jr. is almost priced out given his typical touch load. However, he’s cheaper than teammate Greg McCrae this week. He also gets a decent match-up against Stanford and UCF should score a ton of points regardless of who plays QB for them this weekend.
Zonovan Knight has turned into the leader of the three-headed attack for the N.C. State Wolfpack. West Virginia’s giving up over 200 rushing yards per game. At $5,600, Zonovan should be a steal this week.
Brian Robinson Jr. is averaging a similar workload to Najee Harris and he’s $1,700 cheaper for Alabama. He hasn’t been the most efficient back so far, but that might not matter this weekend. South Carolina looks atrocious so far on defense. Alabama’s projected to score over 40 points. Do the math.
Shamari Brooks averaged 21 touches per game last year for Tulsa. He’s coming off a 30-touch game against San Jose State. Luckily, Tulsa’s offense completely stalled in week one against Michigan State. Otherwise, Brooks would be priced over $6,000. Yes, Oklahoma State is tougher than San Jose State, but the Cowboys are still allowing 164 rush yards per game already. Brooks is a slam dunk cheap pairing this week.
Ty’Son Williams has worked his way into the lead back role for BYU to the tune of 14 touches per game, faces a defense allowing nearly 170 rushing yards per game, and is only $4,700.
Elijah Collins ($3,000, Michigan State) is the biggest miss by Draft Kings this season. Collins just saw 18 touches a week ago and Michigan State should be ahead of Arizona State all game this week too. At minimum price, there’s no reason Collins isn’t in every single one of your lineups, cash or GPP.
Priority: (1) Malepeai, (2) Collins, (3) Hill, (4) Dobbins, (5) Brooks, (6) Hubbard
This week’s main slate of receivers might be the strangest pricing set we see all season. Tylan Wallace ($8,600, Oklahoma State) and Jerry Jeudy ($8,000, Alabama) are priced $1,600 above any other options. Then the rest of the slate is incredibly flat pricing across the board. At first glance, it may seem smart to pivot off both expensive options, but thanks to some stunning value receivers and running backs you can definitely start one, if not both of the elite options this week.
You would have to start two cheaper quarterbacks, but the expected volume for Wallace and Jeudy is hard to pass up. Just look at their ridiculous starts through two weeks and the opportunity at hand:
|Receiver||Average FPoints/Game||Receptions/Game||Yards/Rec||Rec Yds/Game||Implied Team Points||Rec Market Share||Opponent Pass Yards/Game Allowed|
The opportunity at hand suggests 100-yard days (at least) for both and quite possibly two touchdowns a piece. The only glaring concern is that Wallace isn’t actually seeing a ton of receptions. He’s just taking each one for more than 27 yards, and that isn’t sustainable. Given that fact, Jeudy’s PPR floor is much safer, with perhaps equal or greater upside. My model projects an expected 27 more points for both, but Jeudy looks like the value between the two given he’s $600 cheaper with a higher implied reception total.
The wide receiver value gap between Jeudy and Wallace and the rest of the field is incredible. There’s a $2,200 drop in price from the top tier before the receiver options make sense, but once you get to $5,800 the values are absolutely incredible.
|Receiver||Week 3 Price||Average FPoints/Game||Receptions/Game||Yards/Rec||Rec Yds/Game||Implied Team Points||Opponent Pass Yards/Game Allowed|
|Darrell Stewart Jr.||5800||24.9||8.0||15.1||120.5||28.5||171.5|
|Amon-Ra St. Brown||5000||19.3||6.5||10.4||67.5||30.5||141.0|
|Sam Crawford Jr.||4600||20.8||7.0||13.3||93.0||26||219.0|
Darrell Stewart, KJ Hill, and Tyler Vaughns are the safest mid-priced options on the entire board. Hill looks riskier with his average receptions per game at 5.5, but last week’s eight reception total should become the norm given the typical nature of that role in the Ryan Day (Ohio State) offense. Vaughns faces a team better defeated on the ground, but should see the largest market share among the USC receivers. Stewart likely sees the highest market share numbers of all three safe options here though.
Branden Mack, Isaiah Wright, and Jadan Blue should all be spread among your lineups this week given Temple’s high volume offense. All three received 12 targets in week one. Mack led the team in receptions a year ago. Jadan Blue is a new piece to the offense, but saw three of the first 11 targets for Temple in his first game. Isaiah Wright isn’t as efficient, but sees other touches in the form of rushes and returns (20 total touches in week one). Maryland is tough, but the fact they’re all $5200 or less is criminal.
Amon-Ra St. Brown ($5000, USC) is a PPR volume play that should see 8-10 targets.
Devonta Smith is the cheapest pivot WR for Alabama at $4900. He’s caught 5 balls in both games so far. If he finds the end zone Smith could be the best value on the board (could give him around 20 points).
Then to round things out we have six cheap lead targets in lower volume passing offenses in Ihmir Smith-Marsette, Sam Crawford Jr., Deshaunte Jones, Micah Simon, Pat Freiermuth, and Malik Knowles. All six should see at least four catches (closer to maybe ten for Jones) and cost next to nothing. All six are projected to score 14 fantasy points or more given the mix of target volume, opposing defense, and implied point totals for their team (using the aforementioned fantasy points projection model).
I know that’s a lot to choose from, so I’ll help you prioritize the plays:
Priority: (1) Jeudy, (2) Stewart Jr., (3) Temple WRs (Wright, if you have to choose one), (4) Wallace, (5) Hill, (6) Vaughns, (7) Jones, (8) St. Brown
And that’s all folks! Hope your teams kill it in the main slate of Week 2 College Football! Make sure to check out Devy Weekly to learn more about breakout studs every single week of the season. Please find me on Twitter @FF_TravisM to chat more about all things college football and NFL! And as always, keep living that Dynasty Life!