Below I will highlight a few guys that I perceive will provide value for their price on DraftKings for Week 9 in the NFL.
Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears ($5,200): Just like I mentioned last week, Jay Cutler is an excellent cheap QB option against the Chargers. He is simply too cheap to pass up with his potential. In his last 4 games, Cutler is averaging a very solid 19.9 fantasy points per game. He should do even better this week against the poor Chargers pass defense. The Chargers have the 25th ranked pass defense according to football outsiders. That is eight spots worse than the 17th ranked Minnesota pass defense that Cutler put up 19.5 points last week. Take advantage of Cutler being over $1,500 cheaper than the other elite QB options. He is the play if you want a cheap QB option.
Dion Lewis, New England Patriots ($6,400): Dion Lewis has been fantastic this season. He has at least 16 points per game in 5 of his 6 games. He looks to have returned from his abdominal injury as shown by Lewis leading the Patriots running backs in snaps last week. The most important part of his production is his impressive 5.3 receptions per game on 7.5 targets. Lewis should continue his great season against Washington’s 22nd ranked pass defense.
T.J. Yeldon, Jacksonville Jaguars ($4,800): Yeldon is a perfect 50/50 play this season with a solid 18.5 fantasy points per game his last three games. Most importantly is his volume. Yeldon is averaging 20+ touches the last 3 games and is a true 3 down back playing over 85% of the snaps for the Jaguars in the last game. Yeldon also has a minimum of 9.7 points in 5 of his 6 games played and that is with only 2 touchdowns this season. The Jaguars have rumored that Yeldon will start to get the goal line carries and that should increase his points. Now, here is the bad news. Yeldon and the Jaguars are facing the Jets who have the number 1 ranked rush defense according to football outsiders. That said the Jets gave up 113 yards on 20 rushes to Latavius Murray last week.
Dexter McCluster, Tennessee Titans ($3,400): I like McCluster as a cheap option again this week. I wrote a long reasoning in last week’s write up and it all remains to be true. McCluster has played more offensive snaps than Antonio Andrews every single week of the season. We also have to remember, DraftKings is point per reception scoring and catching passes is what McCluster does best. McCluster is averaging a very nice 8.4 fantasy points a game and gets a great matchup this week against the Saints defense that is dead last in DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average). Use McCluster if you need a cheap price.
Alshon Jeffrey, Chicago Bears ($6,700): Let’s fire up Jeffrey with Cutler this week. Jeffrey has had exceptional season with a 30+ fantasy points his last two weeks. Jeffrey also is 3rd in the league with 12.33 targets per game. Jeffrey has been fantastic this season with 25 fantasy points per game (2nd highest of wide receivers). Yet he is still the 14th highest priced wide receiver. As I mentioned in Cutler’s section, the Bears get a nice matchup this week against the poor San Diego secondary. San Diego’s pass defense ranks 28th vs #1 wide receivers according to football outsiders. Cutler and Jeffrey make for a great cost effective stack.
Michael Crabtree, Oakland Raiders ($4,900): Crabtree has been phenomenal this season and is still only $4,900. At such a cheap price, Crabtree is a great play this week. Crabtree is leading the Raiders in targets (68) and receptions (40). His 9.71 targets per game is 16th out of all pass catchers in the league and he has at least 4 receptions and 37 yards each week, meaning an absolute minimum of 7.7 fantasy points. The Raiders have a decent matchup this week against the middling Pittsburgh secondary. Crabtree is a great play this week and allows you to fit more expensive players onto your team.
Delanie Walker, Tennessee Titans ($4,200): Walker has been exceptional this season with at least 12 fantasy points in 5 of his 6 games and has a minimum of 3 catches for 36 yards each game. Walker also has a fantastic matchup against the New Orleans Saints who rank last in Defensive DVOA vs tight ends, allowing over 70 yards a game. Walker makes for a great play at tight end or the flex.
Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles ($3,200): Ertz has been very good of late, averaging 10.3 fantasy points per game over the last three games with 14 receptions for 166 yards on 22 targets during that span. Now, despite those good numbers Ertz has yet to reach the end zone this season. The reason Ertz’s value has dropped this low is due to his lack of touchdowns this season. Ertz has been unlucky in this regard, but his luck should turn around as is second on the Eagles in red zone targets. Ertz makes for a nice tight end play, as well as a cheaper flex option.
REMINDER: Check all lineups before the games start to ensure your players are in their team’s lineup.
*All prices from DraftKings.com
Kevin is a recent UCLA graduate and is currently in the process of achieving his Masters in Sports Management from Long Beach State. He is a stat geek who thrives on taking advantage of the numbers in all aspects of sports and life. You can follow him on Twitter at @KevTom21 or reach him through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) for questions or feedback.