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Jake Luton
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Daily Fantasy Decisions

CFB DFS Bargains: Week 10

by Mark Lindquist
Updated On: November 1, 2019, 10:28 am ET

In this column, going position-by-position, we’ll offer up one building-block DFS sleeper priced at $6,000 or cheaper ($6,500 and cheaper at QB) and three deeper bargains priced at $5,000 or cheaper (two QBs at $6,000 or cheaper). We’re plucking our dark horses from DraftKings. Player pool drawn from the Saturday slates.


Quarterback


Affordable building block ($6,500 or less)

Oregon State QB Jake Luton ($6,400) at Arizona (Saturday main slate) -- Luton is very quietly in the midst of a low-key nice season in Corvallis, having thrown for at least three touchdowns in three contests out of seven while putting up four games of at least 250 yards passing. He’ll now head into the desert to take on an Arizona defense which just surrendered 41 points to Stanford (oh dear) while allowing K.J. Costello to throw for 322 yards and three touchdowns. Luton has been held under 200 yards passing in each of his previous two contests, but those came against defensive squads in Utah and Cal. The game prior to that showdown with the Golden Bears, Luton fired off five touchdown passes against UCLA. We see him hewing closer to that latter performance this weekend.

And two from the bargain bin ($6,000 or less)

South Carolina QB Ryan Hilinski ($6,000) vs. Vanderbilt (Saturday night slate) -- Hilinski is no sure thing for real passing yards -- prior to his 319-yard outburst against Tennessee last weekend, he had been kept under 200 yards passing in each of his previous four games -- but as illustrated against the Vols (and against Bama earlier in the year) he is capable of 300-plus showings on the yardage front. 

All of the above said, Hilinski is also on a three-game streak with a touchdown pass and SC is getting this one at home. This Steady Eddie act appeals to us at his price point, relative to other options. If you want to gamble, though, drop down to our next recommendation.

 

Virginia Tech QB Quincy Patterson ($4,500) at Notre Dame (Saturday main slate) -- Oh let’s gamble. And we’re talking a serious gamble, because it’s not guaranteed that Patterson sees the field much at all. But we’re guessing that he does. Patterson began the season as QB3 on the depth chart, but after starter Hendon Hooker suffered a knee injury against UNC two weekends ago, Patterson essentially jumped ostensible backup Ryan Willis in exploding for 122 yards rushing with two total touchdown passes in what finished as a six-overtime thrilla of a win. 

Tech was on bye last weekend and it’s not entirely certain how HC Justin Fuente will use his quarterbacks against the Irish. But Patterson’s ability as a rusher -- at a dirt cheap cost for DFS players -- makes him a worthy, sneaky option, especially in a matchup where the Hokies will presumably be looking to throw off Notre Dame in any way they can.


Running back


Affordable building block ($6,000 or less)

Oregon State RB Artavis Pierce ($5,900) at Arizona (Saturday main slate) -- Back into the Corvallis well with this one. If you’re feeling a little daring, you might consider throwing $5,200 down on Jermar Jefferson, who comes at an injury discount (Jefferson is questionable with a nagging ankle issue), but we feel more comfortable with Art, here. He has hit at least 80 yards on the ground in four of his last five games, with a pair of showings over 100 yards in that space. And as leaky as Arizona was in defending the pass against Stanford last time out, the Wildcats are worse against the run, with four runners posting over 100 yards on the ground versus HC Kevin Sumlin’s crew. If you’re a bit uneasy about putting heavy faith in Oregon State’s offense, understandable. But the numbers are there.

 

And three from the bargain bin ($5,000 or less)

Maryland RB Javon Leake ($5,000) vs. Michigan (Saturday main slate) -- Rolling with a Michigan foe can be dicey, because whatever you want to say about UM’s offense, their defensive still remains very much capable of pitching a shutout. And Leake more/less no-showed against Minnesota last weekend, rushing for just 44 yards on seven carries. Even with those limited touches, he still averaged 6.3 YPC. 

The weekend before the Gophs shut down the Terps, though, Leake went absolutely crazy, bouncing off the walls to the tune of 158 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries. And while Minnesota kept him out of the end zone on Oct. 26, Leake had scored five touchdowns combined over his previous three games. Unless UM comes out on fire and forces the Terps to abandon the run outright, we think Leake will see enough touches for a productive day.

 

UCF RB Bentavious Thompson ($5,000) vs. Houston (Saturday main slate) -- With Greg McCrae set to miss this one with an injury concern, UCF’s backup duo of Adrian Killins and Thompson will likely see the majority of work. Between that pair, Thompson’s the easy play for us. Not only is he $1,000 cheaper than Killins, he has also been the more productive back of late. Thompson has seen 20 carries in the Knights’ last two games, rushing for 138 yards and three touchdowns in that space. 

Compare that to Killins, who has taken a mere nine carries for 77 yards in his last three contests -- and is currently dealing with a minor injury to boot (though it’s not expected to keep him from playing. The Cougars have allowed five backs over 80 yards rushing this season. Slot Thompson into your lineup with confidence.

 

Auburn RB D.J. Williams ($4,000) vs. Ole Miss (Saturday night slate) -- Under normal circumstances, Williams would not receive a second glance. Under normal circumstances, JaTarvious Whitlow would be the lead dog. Whitlow’s not fully healthy, though, just now returning from knee surgery. Tigers HC Gus Malzahn has admitted as much. Against LSU last weekend, Whitlow saw just scant work. It was Williams who helped to pick up the slack in rushing for 130 yards on 13 carries. There’s no guarantee that the four-star freshman repeats this performance -- he entered last weekend’s action having rushed for 80 yards on the year -- but at $4,000 we’ll take our chances. 


Wide receiver


Affordable building block ($6,000 or less)

North Carolina WR Dazz Newsome ($5,900) vs. Virginia (Saturday night slate) -- Over the last month or so, Newsome and QB Sam Howell have been in sweet sweet synch, with Newsome topping 80 yards receiving in each of his last three contests -- over 100 yards in each of his last two -- while scoring at least one touchdown in every game in that space. Newsome plays in an offense which can run a little hot/cold (no surprise with a true frosh quarterback) but it’s run hot often enough that we trust it for DFS/fantasy purposes).

 

And three from the bargain bin ($5,000 or less)

Purdue WR David Bell ($5,000) vs. Nebraska (Saturday main slate) -- Just a confusing price point to us, here. Bell was limited to five catches for 18 yards against Illinois last weekend, but prior to that dud showing against the resurgent Illini, he had been among the hottest receivers in the country, recording three performances over 100 receiving yards in three of his previous four games (with two of those showings going for more than 135 yards). The Huskers have surrendered 100-yard showings to Indiana’s Whop Philyor and Minnesota’s Tyler Johnson in their last two games.

 

Virginia Tech TE Dalton Keene ($4,700) at Notre Dame (Saturday main slate) -- Doubling up on Oregon State and Virginia Tech players in this column. Let’s just say that the Halloween spirit has us taking a few spooky chances with questionable teams. Keene was outright held to one catch in Virginia Tech’s six-overtime (mercy) win over UNC in Week 8 prior to hitting their bye last weekend, but Keene’s found the end zone four times combined in his previous two contests and now gets to face an Irish passing defense which has given up at least 70 receiving yards to nine (!) players thus far. 

 

TCU WR Taye Barber ($4,300) at Oklahoma State (Saturday main slate) -- Barber did not record his first catch of the campaign until mid-October, but has made his mark over the last two weekends, catching a combined nine passes for 131 yards against Kansas State and Texas. The bulk of that action came versus the Longhorns this past Saturday, when he caught five passes for 94 yards. In general, we’re bullish on TCU’s passing pieces down the stretch as frosh QB starter Max Duggan continues to settle into the game. Oklahoma State’s secondary is all kinds of putrid, allowing eight receivers to go for at least 80 yards receiving this season. If you’re willing to shell out a little more for Barber’s more established teammate in the receivers room, Jalen Reagor at $5,800 is very reasonably priced.

Mark Lindquist
Mark Lindquist holds a master's degree from the University of Iowa and writes baseball and college football for Rotoworld.com. He's currently working on a memoir about life, death, rock 'n' roll and his year teaching at a Chinese university. You can reach him on Twitter @markrlindquist.