FanDuel Friday: Patriots-Cowboys boasts monster DFS value in Week 5


FanDuel Friday: Patriots-Cowboys boasts monster DFS value in Week 5

Daily Fantasy Sites such as DraftKings and FanDuel have been under fire as of late.

If you haven't heard, or maybe you've been living under a rock the past week, an employee of DraftKings had access to insider information and won $350,000 on the competitor site, FanDuel, over the weekend.

Ouch. The CEO of FanDuel must be feeling sort of like Sean Rodriguez right now.

While the news wasn't pretty, the show must go on, and DFS sites won't be going away anytime soon. 

Now, we can't promise you that our suggestions will help you win a boatload of cash like that DraftKings employee. But we will do our best to help you construct the best lineup every week.

Check out our FanDuel lineups for the Week 5 slate of games and If you've got specific questions, drop us a question on Twitter @CSNFantasy or use #CSNFantasy and we'll give you our take.

And as always, good luck this weekend.

John "The Professor" Paschall

I liked Brady coming into this matchup against the Cowboys earlier in the week and now I like it even more after Greg Hardy's idiotic comments. Like the Patriots needed more motivation...

Forsett is flying under the radar like crazy this week. The Ravens offense is lacking some of its weapons (although I do like Aiken this week too as a bargain) and will count on Forsett to pound the rock. 

After Gurley exploded against the Cardinals defense, I have faith in him against any defense. Though be careful in tournament play with him because I'm guessing everyone will want him in their lineup. 

[CSN FANTASY: Fantasy Football Start/Sit: Week 5]

Jones let me down last week so I'm expecting him to make it up to fantasy owners this week against a poor Redskins pass defense. Fitzgerald continues to be Palmer's favorite target and should do okay against a good but not great Lions defense. 

Gates, whose price really isn't that steep, is one of my favorite plays this week as he returns from suspension and faces a Steelers defense that isn't great against tight ends. Rivers will look to his favorite target early and often. 

Mike Smith


This week I’m building my team around the San Diego Chargers passing attack, including Phillip Rivers, Keenan Allen and Danny Woodhead in my lineup.  This offense has been consistent, with Rivers averaging 300 yards passing per game, and Allen and Woodhead accounting for almost half of those yards.  Justin Forsett is coming off his best game of the year, 150 yards against Pittsburgh, and his matchup against the Browns defense this week is less than intimidating.  Forsett has 66 carries this season, yet 0 touchdowns.  He will find the endzone sooner than later.

My other two wide receivers this week are Larry Fitzgerald and Jordan Matthews.  Fitzgerald is averaging 7 catches for over 100 yards per game, and he has a nice matchup lined up against Lions nickel back Josh Wilson.  Matthews has 15 more targets and 10 more catches than any other Eagle, and with Vegas setting the over/under at 49.5 there should be plenty of scoring in this game.  At tight end I’m going to play Rob Gronkowski every week he is active, and this week is no different.  There may be better values plays at tight end from week to week, but no one has a higher floor and higher ceiling than Gronkowski. 

[MORE: Get all your Fantasy Sports coverage for the week here]

Closing out my lineup I like Cairo Santos to continue his Field Goal binge against a weak Bears’ defense, and the Giants have as good a chance as any team at scoring a defensive touchdown against turnover machine Colin Kaepernick.

Scott Krinch

Just like most weeks, there is plenty of value to be had in Week 5.

I constructed my lineup by searching for the best value play at the quarterback, running back and wide receiver positions. 

[ROTOWORLD: Your home for all the latest Fantasy Football news]

Famous Jameis is my pick at quarterback as he gets to square off against a woeful Jaguars defense. I'm taking the good with the bad and hoping he keeps the turnovers down to a minimum of one on Sunday. Todd Gurley is a steal at his current price. The rookie Top 10 pick flashed his potential in a Week 4 victory over the Cardinals and will look to replicate that performance against the Packers. For just under $11,000 I was able to secure two extreme values at wideout in Kendall Wright and Marquess Wilson. The latter could go into Week 5 as the Bears No. 1 wide receiver, which would bode well for his outlook against the league's worst pass defense in the Chiefs. As far as Wright, he has developed a great chemistry with rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota, and the tandem should have a field day against an overrated Bills defense. 

Finding those values allowed me to secure three bonafide stars in Bell, ODB and Gronk. 

With my remaining cash I grabbed the 50-yard field goal machine that is Brandon McManus and a Patriots defense — coming off a bye week — that should feast on a banged-up Cowboys offense.

Tony Andracki

Tom Brady and Dion Lewis were the first guys I placed into my lineup. Off a Bye, the Patriots should come out firing on all cylinders and the Cowboys defense has struggled mightily the last couple games.

LeVeon Bell is one of the most expensive players in DFS leagues, but I had to go with him this week with such a great matchup against a San Diego defense that is allowing the second-most fantasy points to opposing RBs. Julio Jones also was worth the price tag going up against Washington, especially given his production so far this season.

However, in order to afford three big boppers in Brady, Bell and Jones, I had to find some value elsewhere. Michael Floyd ($5,000) and Eddie Royal ($5,500) were exactly that. Floyd had his best game of the season by far in Week 4 and finally looks healthy after dealing with the aftermath of dislocated fingers in preseason. I'm taking a gamble with a cheap price tag that he breaks out - or at least catches 4-5 passes for a decent yardage total. Royal is going up against the worst pass defense in the league in Kansas City and while he is iffy to play, I figured I'd take the gamble now and then just keep an eye on his status leading up to Sunday.

No matter if Royal or Alshon Jeffery play Sunday, Martellus Bennett should get his work carving up the Chiefs secondary. Bennett was a great pick for me last week and I'm counting on another big game form him. Sticking with the same game, Santos is the hottest kicker on the planet right now and plays on an offense that is fine picking up yardage, but has trouble actually punching it into the end zone.

Putting Bill Belichick’s complimentary comments about the Bears in context


Putting Bill Belichick’s complimentary comments about the Bears in context

Bill Belichick had plenty of good things to say about Matt Nagy and the 2018 Bears during a conference call with reporters on Wednesday. Some of the highlights:


On the Bears’ season as a whole:


“The Bears have lost two games, one on a game when they were in control of the game and another one they lost in overtime. This really looks like a 5-0 team to me, if you change one or two plays. You can say that about a lot of teams, but that’s the league we’re in.”


On Mitch Trubisky:


“I think he’s done a good job of getting ball to the players that are open or in space and letting them be playmakers. He has a lot of them. That’s the quarterback’s job is to deliver the ball to the playmakers and let them go. I think he’s done a good job of that. He’s a tough kid, which I respect. That’s what we would ask our quarterbacks to do, to make plays to help our team win, to get the ball to the players that are open and in space. It’s not about stats. It’s about doing what you need to do to win.”


On Tarik Cohen’s usage:


“He plays about a little bit less than 50 percent of the time and he’s in a lot of different places, he’s hard to find. He’s a dynamic player that can run, catch, really threaten every yard of the field from sideline to sideline, up the middle, deep. You can throw it to him, you can hand it to him and he’s elusive with the ball and he’s elusive to be able to get open so the quarterback can get him the ball. Those are great skills to have. Any one of those is good and he’s got several of them.


“He’s very hard to tackle. But they do a great job mixing him, not just putting him in the game but who he’s in the game with, what the combinations are and then where they locate him and so forth. There are a lot of multiples. It’s hard. Coach Nagy does a good job with that and he’s a special player that you gotta know where he is at all times.”


On Trubisky’s 54-yard bomb to Taylor Gabriel on Sunday:


“That’s about as good a throw and catch as I’ve seen all year. The execution on that was like 99 out of 100. It was a great, great throw, great route, great catch. There was like a few inches to get the ball in there 50 yards downfield and that’s where it was.”


On Akiem Hicks’ impact, who played for the Patriots in 2015:


“He’s hard to block. It doesn’t make any difference what the play is, you can run to him and he’s hard to block. You can run away from him, and he makes tackles for loss on the back side. He’s quick and can get around those blocks when there’s more space back there because everybody is going to the front side. He can power rush. He can rush the edges with his quickness. He’s a very, very disruptive player. He’s hard to block on everything.


“I appreciate all of the plays he makes. He makes plays on all three downs, against all types of plays, whether it’s reading screen passes or power rushing the pocket to help the ends, to help (Leonard) Floyd and Mack and (Aaron) Lynch rush on the edge. He’s a powerful, disruptive guy. (Eddie) Goldman has done a good job of that. (Bilal) Nichols has done a good job of that too. They have some really powerful guys inside that are hard to block, and they change the line of scrimmage in the running game and the passing game. It really creates a problem, frees up the linebackers in the running game and helps the ends because the quarterback can’t step up in the pocket in the passing game.”


On Matt Nagy:


“Obviously he's done a great job, as has Ryan with building the team. They have a lot of good players. They have a really experienced staff and they do a great job in all three areas of the game. They're good in the kicking game, they're good on defense they're good on offense. They have highly-skilled players in all three areas.


“It's a well-balanced football team that does a lot of things well. Run the ball. Stop the run. Throw the ball. Rush the passer. Intercept passes. Return kicks. Cover kicks. Cover punts. They're at the top of the league in all those categories. Turnovers. Points off turnovers. It doesn't really matter what area you want to talk about, they're pretty good at all of them. That's why they're a good football team.


“Coach Nagy and his staff certainly deserve a lot of credit. It's not a one-man band. They're all doing a good job. It's a good football team. I'm sure there will be a lot of energy in the stadium this week. It will be a great test for us to go into Chicago and be competitive against them.”


While listening to Belichick rave about the Bears, this missive from former Patriots general manager Michael Lombardi stands out:


“Whenever Belichick tells the media on Mondays or Tuesdays that he has already moved on to the next game, trust me, he’s not lying. I worked with Bill for five years in Cleveland, and then during the 2014 and 2015 seasons in New England. Belichick treats every game like a Super Bowl; no detail is too small, no possible scenario or situation goes overlooked. I have heard Belichick break down a bumbling Jaguars team as if it was the reigning two-time Super Bowl winner and treat Blake Bortles like he’s the second coming of Aaron Rodgers. Belichick does it with tape to back up his claims, only showing his team the opponent’s greatest strengths. (With Bortles, I swear, he must have used George Lucas to doctor the video.) No Patriots opponent is underestimated or taken lightly — EVER.”


One of the myriad things that make Belichick the best coach in the NFL — and maybe the best coach in NFL history — is how he never takes an opponent lightly, and then how he’s so successful at scheming against what an opponent does best.


The Bears are undoubtedly better in 2018 than they were in the John Fox era, or when these two teams last met in 2014 (when New England waxed a moribund Marc Trestman side, 51-23). And a lot of Belichick’s points are valid – that throw Trubisky made to Gabriel was outstanding, for example.


But Belichick talks this way about every team he faces. And that, again, is part of what makes him the best at what he does.

Under Center Podcast: What will we learn about the Bears against the Patriots?

Under Center Podcast: What will we learn about the Bears against the Patriots?

On this week's Under Center podcast, JJ Stankevitz and John “Moon” Mullin look at how Bill Belichick and New England will attack Matt Nagy and the Bears on Sunday, and if Mitch Trubisky can get to the point where he can reliably lead a late-game scoring drive like Tom Brady is so good at doing.

You can listen to the whole thing here, or in the embedded player below: