FanDuel Fades Week 6
There are several reasons you might not want to roster a certain player in a given week of NFL DFS. To truly be a “fade”, in my opinion the player has to be projected to have decent ownership, e.g. no one is “fading” a WR4 on the LA Rams. I’ll always provide the argument for and against a player in this column. Also, fading a player doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have zero exposure. If you’re a DFS player who plays on multiple sites with multiple lineups in various contests, fading might mean you use that player in just one or two tournament lineups while other DFS players are using him in a majority of their lineups. In the case where you want to fade a player due to projected high ownership (see more on this below), perhaps you fade him in tournaments but continue to roster him in cash games. Having an idea of whom you don’t want to roster as well as whom you do makes navigating salary decisions in the lineup construction process a little bit easier.
The Green Bay Packers run defense looks to be for real. This weekend will be the test for sure as the Dallas offensive line and talented rookie come to town. There are simply other running backs in Ezekiel Elliott’s price range (LeSean McCoy, Lamar Miller) that I feel much safer with in my main lineup. That said, Elliott is looking like a great tournament play because he has the skill set and role to be a star this week—it’s really just the effectiveness of the Packers holding me back and the Packers haven’t faced a back like Elliott yet this year.
It’s another tough one for Julio Jones in Seattle. The Falcons are pretty big underdogs and the Seattle secondary has limited opposing wideouts to just one touchdown so far this season. Granted, they haven’t faced anyone of the caliber of Jones, but unlike Elliott, Jones has been very up and down this season with two games fewer than four FanDuel points. With his sore knee and the Seattle secondary, it’s shaping up as a week to avoid Jones in all formats.
The game script for Cincinnati and New England is that the Bengals will be behind and passing a lot to try to keep pace with Tom Brady and company. On the one hand, that could shape up for like 15 targets for Green. On the other, he’s clearly the best player on the Bengals team and the hallmark of a Patriots defense, which has been really solid this year, is to shut that best player down. Like Jones, Green has had an up and down year so far—a couple outstanding games and three duds. I think Andy Dalton ends up checking down to Giovanni Bernard a fair amount in this one and his salary is almost $3K less than Green’s.
Not to pile on the high priced receivers, but I’m having a hard time spending up this week and that extends even beyond Odell Beckham Jr. (see below). But the Giants will be involved in what Vegas has as one of the lower scoring games this week with a Baltimore team that has allowed only about 60 yards to opposing WR1 (per Football Outsiders). On the other hand, it actually projects as a decent fantasy points-allowed-to-receivers matchup for Beckham. Maybe the breakout game is coming, and maybe the chemistry with Eli Manning is still lacking. Beckham hasn’t touched more than 15 FanDuel points this season, which given his price, makes him hard to roster this weekend.
In Week 6, I’m also fading:
Antonio Brown: Miami doesn’t look like a team that can stop Brown, and the Steelers are coming off back-to-back huge performances at home. However, the thing that’s giving me pause here is an examination of Brown’s road splits. He has scored only 11 touchdowns on the road in 45 games. He literally scores three times as often at home in Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger is also better at home, though not quite so dramatically over his long career. For me, Le’Veon Bell is the guy I want to own from this game. He’s been a fantasy asset in the two games he’s played without even scoring!
Cheap tight ends: I have a hard time getting away from Greg Olsen, Delanie Walker, Jimmy Graham, and for tournaments, Rob Gronkowski. While there are a couple possibilities in the bargain bin at tight end, the talent, opportunity, game script and team totals for the tight ends at the top of the salary spectrum is simply too good to pass on for me this weekend.
In Week 6, players with high projected ownership, based in part on Thursday ownership percentages, are Drew Brees, Colin Kaepernick, John Brown, Cameron Meredith, Christine Michael, LeSean McCoy, Lamar Miller, Le’Veon Bell, Greg Olsen, and Delanie Walker. I think Game Theory is useful in DFS to an extent; obviously we can’t all win with the same players. But time and again it’s proven that big GPP winners can and do win with chalk plays in their lineups. One or two highly owned players that live up to their expectations (e.g. score a ton of points) won’t hurt you nearly as much as fading those guys in favor of lower-owned, lesser-producing players will. The trick is to find the low-owned, productive guys. I will have many, many shares of the Buffalo Bills defense so Kaepernick is off this list for me, but every one of these other highly owned guys is in a great spot to succeed. Spread them out thoughout your cash and tournament lineups.