DFS VALUE PLAYS: WEEK 10
By: Matt Bishop
@Bishphat on Twitter
Week 10: that was fast. What’s your status? Are you in the playoff hunt and looking to make deals to acquire some depth for a championship run? Or are you in fire sale mode, trading off any player of value to lock down some talent for next season? I’m the latter, having 2 out of 3 fantasy teams not making the playoffs, forcing me to be a seller at the deadline. If you’re squarely in the hunt or giving up hope, Week 10 is chalk full of tasty matchups and potential shootouts so juicy, it could make even the casual DFS player moist. It’s never too late to make a run and identifying favorable matchups can only help.
ALEX SMITH, QB WASHINGTON @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
19.9 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
So what have we learned this year? That’s right. The Tampa Bay Bucs Defense is having a bad year. They are currently allowing 25.2 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing QBs (1st), 22 passing TDs (1st) and 2,577 passing yards (5th). They have been gashed since week 1 and there is no signs of slowing down with their upcoming schedule. Here are a few notable performances
- Week 1: Drew Brees 30.0 Fantasy Points (QB2)
- Week 3: Ben Roethlisberger 25.0 Fantasy Points (QB9)
- Week 4: Mitchell Trubisky 43.0 Fantasy Points (QB1)
- Week 6: Matt Ryan 28.0 Fantasy Points (QB4)
- Week 7: Baker Mayfield 21.0 Fantasy Points (QB8)
- Week 8: Andy Dalton 20.0 Fantasy Points (QB11)
Alex Smith should be in line for a big day this week in Tampa. He’s an excellent streamer and could produce 25+ fantasy points and 2 scores.
ANDY DALTON, QB CINCINNATI BENGALS vs. New Orleans Saints
21.2 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
The Red Rocket has led this Bengals team to an impressive 5-3 record this season and 2nd place in the AFC North. Offensive Coordinator Bill Lazor has this offense firing on all cylinders and should continue this week at home against the Saints. The Saints Defense is allowing 24.2 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing QBs (2nd), 2601 passing yards (4th) and 18 pass TDs (6th). The Saints are another defense that has been violated all season and here are some recent outcomes:
- Week 1: Ryan Fitzpatrick 42.0 Fantasy Points (QB1)
- Week 3: Matt Ryan 36.0 Fantasy Points (QB2)
- Week 7: Joe Flacco 20.0 Fantasy Points (QB11)
- Week 8: Kirk Cousins 22.0 Fantasy Points (QB8)
- Week 9: Jared Goff 28.0 Fantasy Points (QB3)
AJ Green has already been ruled out of this one with a toe injury, which means Tyler Boyd is in for a massive workload. The Saints defense is ranked 32nd against #1 (Tyler Boyd) and #2 (John Ross) WRs, along with 27th against pass catching running backs (Joe Mixon). The entire Bengals offense is in play this week, even John Ross, who is $3900 on DraftKings and could be a sneaky DFS play this week. The Bengals are good now.
BAKER MAYFIELD, QB CLEVELAND BROWNS vs. Atlanta Falcons
18.8 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
The Atlanta Falcons secondary is just surviving, having already lost multiple starters for the season early on. They are currently allowing 23.4 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing QBs (3rd), 2535 passing yards (6th) and 18 passing TDs (7th). The Falcons Defense has had a rough stretch:
- Week 2: Cam Newton 29.0 Fantasy Points (QB7)
- Week 3: Drew Brees 41.0 Fantasy Points (QB1)
- Week 4: Andy Dalton 26.0 Fantasy Points (QB9)
- Week 5: Ben Roethlisberger 23.0 Fantasy Points (QB7)
- Week 6: Jameis Winston 33.0 Fantasy Points (QB1)
- Week 7: Eli Manning 21.0 Fantasy Points (QB8)
The Cleveland Browns are throwing 37.9 times per game (7th) and Baker is airing it out with a 9.4 aDOT (5th). He has also thrown multiple scores in 4 of his last 6 games, but is only averaging 15.5 fantasy points per game in this span. He should be in for one of his best games of the season and should top 300+ yards and 2 scores.
MARCUS MARIOTA, QB TENNESSEE TITANS vs. New England Patriots
17.4 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
This one is bound to get ugly quick, forcing Mariota to ditch the run and throw a ton in garbage time. This Patriots defense has been pretty good and better than they are given credit for. But they can be beat with speed. The Pats Defense is currently allowing 19.6 Fantasy Points per Game (6th) and 19 pass TDs (4th). Some notable fantasy performances:
- Week 2: Blake Bortles 34.0 fantasy points (QB3)
- Week 5: Andrew Luck 25.0 Fantasy Points (QB6)
- Week 6: Patrick Mahomes 29.0 Fantasy Points (QB3)
- Week 7: Mitchell Trubisky 33.0 Fantasy Points (QB2)
Look for Corey Davis to be the focal point of this air attack and might be in for a big day. I don’t have any faith in this Titans offense, but they are coming off a solid win against Dallas in week 9 and have momentum on their side.
NICK CHUBB, RB CLEVELAND BROWNS vs. Atlanta Falcons
15.3 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Since taking over this backfield in Week 7, Nick Chubb has been nothing short of excellent:
- 19.3 carries per game (4TH)
- 230 rush yards (7th)
- 16 First Downs (1st)
- 169 yards after contact (2nd)
- 10 Tackles Avoided (2nd)
- 9 runs 10+ yards (1st)
He is still flying under the radar since it hasn’t resulted in decent fantasy production, averaging 13.3 fantasy points per game in his last 3 games. This should change Week 10, since the Falcons are allowing 24.8 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing RBs (4th) and 8 rush tds (5th). Here are some tasty results:
- Week 2: Christian McCaffrey 28.0 Fan PTS (RB2)
- Week 3: Alvin Kamara 34.0 Fan PTS (RB1)
- Week 4: Giovani Bernard 26.0 Fan PTS (RB9)
- Week 5: James Conner 34.0 Fan PTS (RB1)
- Week 6: Peyton Barber 21.0 Fan PTS (RB9)
- Week 7: Saquon Barkley 24.0 PTS (RB5)
And for the second week in a row, Duke Johnson will be a sneaky DFS play, but he won’t be cheap. Here’s why:
- 76 receptions allowed to Running Backs (1st)
- 658 receiving yards allowed to Running Backs (1st)
- 3 receiving TDs (7th)
Nick Chubb is not heavily involved in the passing attack (2.0 Targets per Game) and the Falcons happen to be one of the worst defenses against pass catching running backs. Duke has been targeted 5.0 times per game in his last 3 outings, so look for the Cleveland Browns to gameplan around this and get Duke involved. Both Running Backs in Cleveland are in play.
TEVIN COLEMAN, RB ATLANTA FALCONS @ Cleveland Browns
12.6 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Tevin Coleman is coming off his best performance of the season, with an 18 touch 2 TD 33 fantasy point game against Washington in Week 9. And Washington has a very good defense. Coleman has been kind of disappointing since Devonta Freeman went down, but is averaging 20.0 fantasy points per game in his last 3 games. Look for Coleman to get some run this week against a Cleveland Browns defense that is allowing 25.5 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing RBs (3rd) 1050 yards (5th) and 12 TDs (1st). They are also allowing 504 receiving yards (4th) to running backs. This is bad:
- Week 1: James Conner 35.0 Fantasy Points (RB2)
- Week 2: Alvin Kamara 16.0 Fantasy Points (RB12)
- Week 3: Isaiah Crowell 19.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 4: Marshawn Lynch 19.0 Fantasy Points (RB14)
- Week 6: Melvin Gordon 35.0 Fantasy Points (RB3)
- Week 8: James Conner 37.0 Fantasy Points (RB1)
- Week 9: Kareem Hunt 33.0 Fantasy Points (RB2)
Coleman is still outsnapping Ito Smith 57% to 29%, but Ito has 15 red zone carries to Coleman’s 8. Regardless, Coleman should be in for a big day and should be able rip off yardage in chunks. Get him active everywhere.
JORDAN HOWARD, RB CHICAGO BEARS vs. Detroit Lions
12.8 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Jordan Howard has not been able to get it going this season and has been the forgotten man in this backfield with Tarik Cohen averaging 23.7 fantasy points per game in his last 4 games. However, Cohen is more of a 3rd down back and a receiver out of the backfield. The Lions are pretty stingy against pass catching running backs and are currently in the Top 12 in Targets against, Receptions allowed and receiving yards allowed to running backs. This feels like the gamescript will be more in Howard’s favor, being that the Lions are allowing 23.9 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing RBs (6th) and 1072 rushing yards (2nd). Here are some previous performances:
- Week 1: Isaiah Crowell 22.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 2: Matt Breida 25.0 Fantasy Points (RB4)
- Week 4: Ezekiel Elliot 33.0 Fantasy Points (RB2)
- Week 7: Kenyan Drake 19.0 Fantasy Points (RB10)
- Week 8: Chris Carson 20.0 Fantasy Points (RB11)
- Week 9: Dalvin Cook (15.0) Latavius Murray (12.0) – RB14 and RB18
Da Bears may be able to get up big in this one and will have to run the ball to kill the clock. Howard may be in for his best game of the season.
AARON JONES, RB GREEN BAY PACKERS vs. Miami Dolphins
13.6 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Aaron Jones is good at football. Among RBs with at least 125 carries in the last 2 years:
- 5.7 YPC (1st)
- 4.5 Yards gained after a Defender Closes (1st)
- 17.4% of runs 10+ yards (1st)
- 59% Success Rate (1st)
- 29% First Down Rate (2nd)
I think the Packers coaching staff might finally be realizing what they have in him, as he played a season high 62% of the snaps in Week 8 and 58% of the snaps in Week 9. This week, the Packers will face a Dolphins defense that can’t stop anyone on the ground. The Dolphins defense is allowing 23.5 Fantasy Points per Game (8th) 1073 rush yards (1st) and 7 rush TDs (8th). They are also allowing 52 Receptions (9th) 484 receiving yards (6th) and 3 receiving TDs (9th) to opposing running backs. Miami has allowed the following:
- Week 1: Dion Lewis 22.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 2: Bilal Powell 19.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 3: Marshawn Lynch 18.0 Fantasy Points (RB10)
- Week 4: James White 31.0 Fantasy Points (RB3)
- Week 5: Joe Mixon 21.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 6: Tarik Cohen 24.0 Fantasy Points (RB6)
- Week 7: Kerryon Johnson 20.0 Fantasy Points (RB9)
- Week 8: Lamar Miller 19.0 Fantasy Points (RB15)
Hopefully Mike McCarthy will unleash Jones and let him live up to his potential. He should be in for a big day against a Dolphins DST that is hemorrhaging fantasy points.
TYLER BOYD, WR CINCINNATI BENGALS vs. New Orleans Saints
14.1 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Tyler Boyd is pretty much a must start every week, especially this week with AJ Green sidelined with a foot injury. In fact, Boyd is averaging 24.4 Fantasy Points per Game when he has 6+ Receptions. He is also averaging 9.6 targets per game in that 5 game span. The Saints are allowing
- 34.0 fantasy points per game to opposing WRs (1st)
- 124 Receptions (5th)
- 1790 yards allowed (1st)
- 14 TDs (1st)
Boyd will have a massive work load week 10 with AJ Green out and should continue his excellent play. Boyd is primarily the slot receiver and we are not sure where he will line up with Green sidelined, but John Ross may be worth a speculative add in DFS.
John Ross will be lining up across from PJ Williams, who is allowing a 130.6 passer rating against this season on 31 for 406 and 5 TDs. Williams is a bottom 15 cover corner and John Ross could flash those elite wheels we have been waiting for since the combine. The Saints secondary is suspect to say the least.
JOSH GORDON, WR NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS @ Tennessee Titans
13.4 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
In the last 4 weeks, Josh Gordon has seen his snap count almost triple and is becoming an important piece of this offense. In this span, he is averaging 7.5 targets per game (13th) and 13.75 Fantasy Points per Game. The Titans defense is allowing 26.5 FPPG to opposing WRs (7th) and 11 TDs (8th)
Bill Belichick faced a lot of backlash and criticism for benching Malcom Butler in Super Bowl LII, only after he was deemed the hero of Super Bowl XLIX with a last minute interception at their own goal line to seal the victory. This will be a perfect redemption game for Belichick. Malcom Butler is allowing:
- 141.8 passer rating (4th)
- 39 receptions (1st)
- 618 Receiving Yards (1st)
- 7 TDs (1st)
- 2.31 Yards per Coverage Snap (1st)
On top of that, Gordon primarily lines up as the left receiver and Tennessee is averaging 15.6 fantasy points per game (2nd) to left WRs. What better way to make Butler look bad than to aggressively target an All Pro caliber WR that the Patriots just picked up for a 5th round draft pick. Brilliant on both sides. This may be aggressive and a little crazy, but Gordon has the potential for 20+ targets and a 200 yard receiving game if Belichick wants to drive the point home, which he will. Get him in your lineups everywhere.
JULIAN EDELMAN, WR NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS @ Tennessee Titans
11.7 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Julian Edelman has been targeted 8.6 times per game (13th) in his last 5 games and is averaging 16.0 fantasy points per game (15th) in that stretch. The Titans defense is allowing 26.5 Fantasy Points per Game to opposing WRs (7th) and 11 receiving TDs (8th). They are holding their own against slot receivers, only allowing 12.5 Fantasy points per game (4th best), but Edelman should be busy in this one. Josh Gordon will be busy against Malcom Butler all day, which should leave Edelman open often.
ADAM HUMPHRIES, WR TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS vs. Washington Redskins
5.4 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
Not a household name, but one who has been coming on strong of late. In his last 3 games, Humphries is averaging 8.6 targets per game (11th) and 17.0 fantasy points per game (15th). The Redskins defense is currently allowing 25.3 Fantasy Points per Game to Wide Receivers (10th) and 10 TDs (13th). The Redskins are solid against slot receivers, allowing 13.8 fantasy points per game (6th best), but Humphries could be a cheap sleeper this week.
MAURICE HARRIS, WR WASHINGTON REDSKINS @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
6.5 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
The Washington Redskins receiving core is banged up due to injury and having a hard time filling a roster. Maurice Harris was thrown into action week 5 and may have solidified a starting role ROS with Paul Richardson on the DL. In Week 9, he was targeted 12 times for 10 Receptions on 124 yards, which was good for 22.0 fantasy points. Harris may no longer be their secret weapon, as Quinton Dunbar highly praised Harris saying he has some of the best hands he has ever seen on a receiver.
The Tampa Bay defense is allowing:
- 30.7 Fantasy PPG to opposing WRs (2nd)
- 14 TDs (1st)
- 33.5 points per game to slot receivers (1st)
Harris is currently running 59% of snaps from the slot this season. This just feels like the perfect scenario for Harris to shine with this injury riddled receiving core and this matchup feels right. This feels very similar to the Tyler Boyd breakout, so pick him up immediately if he is available on waivers and you need Wide Receiver depth. Pick him up even if you don’t.
JORDAN REED, TE WASHINGTON REDSKINS @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
9.3 PROJECTED FANTASY POINTS
The Buccaneers defense is allowing 11.9 Fantasy PPG to opposing Tight Ends (2nd) and the Bucs DST is just bad everywhere and at everything. Jordan Reed is averaging 8.0 Targets per Game (3rd) in his last 2 games and should be involved in this one. I think injuries may have finally slowed him down and we really cannot call him an elite option anymore, but he should be decent rest of season with the dumpster fire that is the Tight End position. Start him because you pretty much have to.