Ever heard of FanDuel?
If yes, proceed down two lines of text.
If no, congratulations on getting out from under that rock!
As always, FanDuel is hosting a $5 Million NFL Tournament, starting at 1:00 ET on Sunday. It is $25 to enter, and the winner gets a cool seven-digit payout ($1,000,000).
Here’s my tournament lineup for that contest, outlining some of my favorite players and some strategy tips along the way.
Best of luck!
QB: Philip Rivers – San Diego (FanDuel Price: $7,500)
I believe Rivers has significantly more upside than any QB in this range. He has a juicy home matchup against the suspect Steelers secondary, and his splits have been notoriously better at home throughout his career. Also, with some injuries to San Diego’s offensive line, the Chargers will need to rely on Rivers in the short passing game to sustain drives. His safety valve, Antonio Gates, will return to the starting lineup this week as well, which certainly doesn’t hurt.
RB: Devonta Freeman – Atlanta (FanDuel Price: $7,600)
Will the Devonta Freeman train finally slow down this week? I’m not sure, but I do know that his salary is still a little too cheap given his upside/recent production. Am I expecting another 3 TD game? No. However, I’m not seeing many other players with easy multi-TD upside in the same range. He provides some savings from the top guys like Charles/Bell, with a realistic expectation to at least come near their production. The matchup against Washington looks difficult on paper, but the dynamic Atlanta offense will assuredly find ways to move it into the red-zone on several occasions.
RB: Dion Lewis – New England (FanDuel Price: $6,900)
I’m going value-value at running back this week, spending on some high-upside wide receivers. The hope here is that Freeman and Lewis can account for 20+ fantasy points apiece, then the WRs “can take it home”. That’s not an unrealistic expectation, as Lewis is averaging 17 FanDuel points per game this season, and the Patriots check in as one of the highest projected scoring teams of the week. With Tony Romo and Dez Bryant out for the Cowboys, New England will likely control this game and wear down Dallas’ defense. Lewis should get in to the end-zone and see a handful of receptions out of the backfield.
WR: Julio Jones – Atlanta (FanDuel Price: $9,200)
Game flow killed Julio Jones’ fantasy prospects last week, as Devonta Freeman and the Atlanta defense gave them a huge lead early on. The Falcons didn’t need Julio after that, and they utilized the opportunity to give their superstar a well-earned “rest” by not feeding him the ball every other play. I hope Julio enjoyed his time as a spectator, because he’ll likely be asked to make 10-15 receptions yet again on Sunday. Some people may steer away from Jones due to last week’s clunker, but it’s safe to expect him to come near the 31, 20, and 34 fantasy points he put up through the first three games respectively.
WR: Keenan Allen – San Diego (FanDuel Price: $7,700)
I’m going with the Keenan Allen-Philip Rivers connection here. Some FanDuelers may overlook Allen, thinking that Antonio Gates’ return could limit his production. However, there’s a chance Gates could enable Allen, as defenses would be less focused on containing him. Allen has more upside than most receivers in this range, as he has put up a Julio Jones’ like 10+ receptions, 100+ yard games two time this season. He could be in for another.
WR: Allen Robinson – Jacksonville (FanDuel Price: $6,300)
Allen Robinson is going to have a breakout game very soon. He has been a target monster, seeing 33 looks over the past three games. His inconsistency so far is a direct result of some difficult individual matchups against some of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. That will not be the case in this matchup against a Tampa secondary that has gotten torched on numerous occasions. Robinson has some nice upside for the price here.
TE: Martellus Bennett – Chicago (FanDuel Price: $5,900)
Alshon Jeffrey is doubtful to make his return this week, meaning Bennett should be the focal point of Chicago’s passing game once again. His price tag is still suppressed by a couple of bad outings with Jay Cutler sideline. Cutler returned last week, and Bennett promptly went for 11-83-1 against the Raiders. Chicago checks in as 9 point underdogs while traveling to Kansas City, so you better believe they’ll be chucking the ball down the stretch.
K: Cairo Santos – Kansas City (FanDuel Price: $4,600)
I’m not 100% tailing Santos 27 fantasy point performance last week, but that certainly doesn’t hurt either. It’s nice to back a confident, yet cheap kicker on FanDuel. The Kansas City offense isn’t exactly a red-zone machine, as their short-passing game tends to get stifled as the field shrinks – leading to more FG attempts for Santos.
DEF: New York Giants (FanDuel Price: $4,300)
The Giants Defense has been surprisingly good this season. They are cheap on FanDuel, at home, against a struggling 49ers offense that will be traveling across the country. NYG has been very good against the run this year, and I’m expecting that to continue on Sunday night. That could put turnover-prone QB Colin Kapernick in some predictable passing situations, leading to an INT or two.