Last week, I recommended Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard, Emmanuel Sanders, John Brown, DeVante Parker, Keenan Allen, Allen Robinson, TY Hilton, Antonio Callaway, Corey Davis and Dede Westbrook. Out of those plays, DeVante Parker ended up a scratch but I only recommended him as a desperation play anyways, Keenan Allen was ok and Odell Beckham Jr. was fine but neither of them blew up. Allen Robinson and Sterling Shepard scored which made them ok, while Corey Davis and Dede Westbrook blew up.
Moving forward to week 5, the Steelers host the Falcons. I am going to get as much Julio Jones ($8,800FD/$8,500 DK), Calvin Ridley ($6,800 FD/$5,800 DK), Antonio Brown ($9,000 FD/$9,100) and JuJu Smith-Shuster ($8,000 FD/$7,500 DK) in my lineup as I possibly can regardless of cost. Lately, the Eagles have been getting shredded through the air, so I will also look to get Adam Thielen ($8,300 FD/$7,700 DK) and Stefon Diggs ($8,200 FD/$7,000 DK) into a lot of my lineups next week. These guys are going to be the foundation of my lineups this week.
The Chiefs play the Jaguars next week, so although that offense is explosive, you may want to shy away from throwing Tyreek Hill into your DFS lineups, especially if the Jaguars are able to pay extra attention to him with Watkins likely to miss time with his hamstring injury. Corey Davis may have busted out in a big way this week, but heading into week 5 he should be shadowed by Tre’davious White which could be problematic.
Sterling Shepard @ the Panthers – $6,200 FD/$5,600 DK – The last time the Panthers played football AJ Green was on his way to a solid day before going down with a groin injury so I am confident that Odell Beckham Jr. will have similar success. However, I look at Sterling Shepard in the same light as Tyler Boyd who tore this defense up in week 3. Boyd consistently found pockets in the Panthers zone in route to a big day through the air and with Evan Engram out once again, Shepard will be the Giants possession receiver and he’s the guy likely to find those pockets in the zone similar to the way Tyler Boyd did.
Amari Cooper blew up this week against the solid Browns defense, but he should see a lot of Casey Hayward next week which could be problematic. However, Hayward hasn’t been shadowing this year so there’s a chance Cooper could get a more favorable matchup at times, but you still want to hesitate rolling Cooper out there after his big week 4 performance. After seeing Cooper rip through that Browns defense, you may want to go back to that well and play John Brown ($6,200 FD/$5,600 DK). The Browns are giving up 296 yards per game and 11.7 yards per reception which is 12th worst in the league.
The Lions receivers also have very favorable matchups this week against the Packers defensive backs. I would be confident rolling Golden Tate ($7,400 FD/$6,700 DK and Kenny Golladay ($6,300 FD/$6,000 DK) out there this week. The Packers are only giving up 11.2 yards per reception and 241.8 yards per game, but those numbers are somewhat skewed because they played against the Bears and Bills so far this year, both of which struggled with the forward pass. Marvin Jones is behind both Tate and Golladay in targets, catches and yards, so I would only use Jones if desperate but he may surprise us if this game shoots out.
Dede Westbrook ($5,900 FD/$4,700 DK) and Keelan Cole ($5,700 FD/$4,900 DK) @ the Chiefs. The Chiefs are giving up 328.5 receiving yards per game this year and 20 plays of 20 yards or more. This defense can and will get gashed on a weekly basis by opposing wide receivers and if you have Jaguars receivers on your team you need to get them in your lineup, especially with Fournette out which means the Jaguars will need to throw more. Westbrook is a solid lower end guy to pair with a guy like Julio Jones or Antonio Brown this week.
At running back last week, Jordan Howard and Kenyan Drake simply didn’t get the touches. I am abandoning Kenyan Drake until we see a game where he’s featured as the primary back. As far as Howard is concerned, I am not worried, I think that the Bears came out with a game plan to attack the Bucs through the air and that suited Tarik Cohen’s skillset more than Howard’s. Gio Bernard and Carlos Hyde came through for you, while Lamar Miller came up extremely small, doing very little with his touches, none of which were catches.
Last week the Giants just got gashed by Alvin Kamara, so it’s only appropriate to go right back to that matchup with a very similar type player in Christian McCaffrey – $8,100 FD/$8,000 DK. The Giants give up 4.8 yards per carry which is 7th most in the NFL and give up about 125 rushing yards per game. To add to the Giants rush defense woes, they have surrendered 5 catches out of the backfield to Lamar Miller, Alvin Kamara, Zeke Elliott and a combined 6 between TJ Yeldon and Leonard Fournette in week 1 when Fournette left early due to a hamstring injury. Through the air and on the ground, McCaffrey needs to be the foundation of your DFS lineups this week.
Sony Michel ($6,600 FD/$5,400 DK) has arrived and it seems like the Patriots backfield is now his show with Rex on IR. The Colts have a solid run defense, giving up only 3.9 yards per carry, but they just played an extremely taxing overtime game this past Sunday which sets up very well for the Patriots on a short week this Thursday Night. James White ($6,600 FD/$6,100 DK) is also a viable play, especially since the Colts defense gave up 13 catches to Chris Thompson in week 2 who is a player in the same mold as James White. Both of these backs can offer independent fantasy value this week, making them both viable options.
Kerryon Johnson vs Packers – $6,100 FD/ $4,600 DK – The Packers rush defense looks ok for the most part, but the statistics are skewed because two of their games were against inferior rushing attacks. Last week, the Packers gave up 24 yards on 5 carries to a banged up LeSean McCoy and in week 2, they gave up 38 yards on 10 carries to Dalvin Cook before he blew a wheel. In week 1, Jordan Howard was humming against the Packers, toting the rock 15 times for 82 yards and in week 3, Adrian Peterson ripped off 120 yards on 19 carries. The theme here is that anytime the Packers have played against a legit offense, they give up production to running backs. The Lions should be able to spread out the Packers defense and Kerryon Johnson should have some wide open lanes to run through. I understand I recommended Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay as well, but if this game is a shoot out, there will be enough yardage and touchdowns to go around.
Chris Thompson @ the Saints – $6,100 FD/$5,900 DK – The theory here is simple. The Saints can put some serious points on the board, especially at home and the Redskins offense will need to do everything they can to keep up. Saquon Barkley is really the only running back the Saints have faced with serious pass catching ability so far this season and they gave up 6 catches for 56 yards against him. If I spend up at wide receiver or on another running back this week, I will look to put Thompson in my lineup as a lower end guy.
Alfred Morris vs the Cardinals – $5,500 FD/$3,600 DK – The Cardinals have given up a lot of touchdowns to opposing running backs so far this season and if the 49ers get to the redzone, Morris will be their guy, not Breida. Although they played against a banged up Chargers defense last week, the 49ers offense didn’t look like a JV football team out there with CJ Beathard under center which is encouraging because it looks like we can still use some of the 49ers skill position players in fantasy, at least for now. To be clear, I am not terribly excited about playing Morris this week. In my view, he’s a desperation play in season long and an extremely low end guy in DFS that could come through if he scores.
Kenyan Drake @ Bengals – $5,900 on FD and $4,700 DK – I know I said I am abandoning Kenyan Drake (check my spelling) until further notice but I want to play him in my lineups so bad…he’s just too explosive for me to leave on my bench. That being said, he’s come up so small lately, it’s almost impossible to trust him. The Bengals have gotten smashed on the ground over the last two weeks by Christian McCaffrey, Ito Smith and Tevin Coleman, and after the Dolphins terrible week 4 performance against the Patriots, the Dolphins will be hungry to bounce back in week 5. The Bengals are giving up 4.2 yards per carry which isn’t terrible but it doesn’t present an impossible matchup either. The Dolphins pace of play is a little concerning as they don’t run many plays, but given the matchup, they may lean on Drake to sustain drives and keep the potent Bengals offense off the field. The Bengals do get Burfict back which is a little concerning, but in the 2018 NFL, he will likely be ejected by the 2nd quarter anyways. I want to like Kenyan Drake this week but it’s difficult to do so given his usage lately. I am starting him in season long leagues but likely won’t play him in DFS.
Joe Mixon ($7,100 FD/$6,900 DK) should be back for the Bengals in time to face off against the Dolphins this week. Dion Lewis, Marshawn Lynch, James White and Sony Michel all had decent games against the Dolphins so far this year and Mixon is by far the most talented out of all of the aforementioned players. The Dolphins give up a solid 3.7 yards per carry but they’ve given up 3 runs of 20+ yards which is 7th most in the league, which indicates they are good on a per play basis but are susceptible to getting gashed. Mixon is an extremely patient runner and should have fresh legs coming off the knee injury.
Mark Ingram ($6,100 FD/$5,100DK) – Mark Ingram has fresh legs, pure and simple. Look for Ingram to be shot out of a cannon this week against the Redskins after sitting out the first four weeks of the season. The Redskins give up less than 100 yards per game which is solid, but they give up 4.5 yards per carry which is 10th worst in the NFL. Look for Ingram to come through in his first game back.