In this weekly article, we’ll look at the cheaper options that should return good value to your NFL DFS lineups. The bargain threshold varies by site, and position, but generally we’ll aim for our bargain plays to take up about 8-10 percent of your salary cap, except for quarterbacks, which we’ll allow 11-12 percent. A great tool to find bargains is our DFS projection system, which gives a dollar per fantasy point projection for each player. I refer to it often!
John Wolford, LA Rams ($6200 FD, $4900 DK, $23 Yahoo)
It remains to be seen whether Jared Goff will have recovered enough to start on Saturday. Coach Sean McVey has already said that he isn’t naming a starter until just before game time. If you’re looking to save big at QB in order to load up at RB/WR/TE, Wolford is your man. There isn’t much salary separation in the mid-range, but Wolford is dirt cheap. He wasn’t great in Week 17, totaling around 14 fantasy points, but neither have a lot of QBs playing this weekend. Baker Mayfield, Philip Rivers, Alex Smith, Goff himself, have been very much in the 14-fantasy point range. Wolford gets a better passing matchup than any of them with the Seahawks, so if you’re considering going with someone other than Josh Allen or Lamar Jackson, might as well go all the way down to Wolford.
Advice: Pay up for Lamar Jackson or Josh Allen
Montgomery was the man for New Orleans with the whole backfield on the COVID-19 list. It looks like Alvin Kamara has a chance to return for Sunday’s game, but it is far from a guarantee at this point. Latavius Murray would have a better chance than Kamara, since he was only a close contact and just needs a series of negative tests to play. If that happens, Murray would be the start. In Week 17, Montgomery totaled nearly 100 yards on 12 rushes and 3 catches. Of course, if Kamara is active, neither of these two are worth a spot in any DFS lineup.
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Antonio Brown, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($6500 FD, $6100 DK, $23 Yahoo)
I’m probably the last person to come around on Brown. Yes, he’s coming off a huge, 14-target, 11-catch, 2-TD game, but the reason I’m interested is two-fold. His recent history of being an end-zone magnet for Tom Brady, and Mike Evans’ injury. The Bucs are big road favorites over Washington, but the Football Team defense hasn’t made it easy on most of their opponents this season. Since Week 11, they’ve intercepted a pass (at least one) in every game, and allowed 20 or fewer real points to their opponents. If Evans is out, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski and Brown are all elevated; Brown is the best potential value play (along with Gronk on DraftKings ($4000).
Isaiah McKenzie, Buffalo Bills ($4900 FD, $3300 DK, $13 Yahoo)
McKenzie has been described with all kinds of superlatives this week after his 3-TD game. Should Cole Beasley miss the Wild Card round, McKenzie would be in line for higher usage in the slot once again. The Colts Defense is good, but not as good as they were at the beginning of the year, and Buffalo has found creative ways to score regardless of opponent this season. They are the second-highest scoring team in the league, and you take on very little risk with McKenzie’s salary to find out if he’ll be a part of it again this weekend.
Cam Sims, Washington Football Team ($4900 FD, $3900 DK, $10 Yahoo)
Sims saw nine targets in Week 17, which he mostly squandered. While Philadelphia may have wanted to lose the game, the Football Team did not look sharp in their final regular season outing. Now that they’re here, I’m hoping Alex Smith and the gang find a way to get up for this matchup with Tampa Bay on offense. Sims had nine targets in Week 16 with Terry McLaurin out, but followed that with five catches on five targets in Week 17 with McLaurin back (eight targets). Both guys had one red zone target in that game (McLaurin scored, Sims did not). Even as the No. 2 WR for Washington, Sims has upside in a game where Smith is going to need to pass and score to keep up with Tampa Bay. Hopefully, his defense gives him a couple of nice field position opportunities and they can take advantage of the Bucs No. 11 DvP for receivers.
Jimmy Graham, Chicago Bears ($5100 FD, $3300 DK, $13 Yahoo)
Graham is boom or bust, yes, but so are all tight ends. The difference is that his boom is two touchdowns, better than anyone near his salary range this week. He did that just twice in the regular season, but averaged about five targets per game. Who knows how long Jimmy holds a grudge, but there is a revenge game factor here too, as he faces his old team. He was terrible against the Saints earlier this season, but Chicago will need a miracle to win this game, and Graham has been that player at times this season. I think Mitchell Trubisky will go to his reliable veterans often in this game.
Seattle Seahawks ($3600 FD, $2700 DK, $16 Yahoo)
Forget what I said about Wolford above. Assuming you are rostering a stud QB, but need to save on D/ST, the Seahawks are home, playing in the game with Vegas’ lowest point total, and facing a very inexperienced QB. The Rams were one of the lower scoring teams even with Goff under center, so I believe this will be a defensive grind on both sides. The Rams certainly have the advantage, and they can be used with ease on DraftKings this week. But on FanDuel or Yahoo, it might make sense to pay down to use Seattle – not for their productivity so far – in this positive matchup.
Also consider: LA Rams on DraftKings ($2900)