The Daily Spin – NFL Cash Game Edition – Week 10

Zachary Turcotte
By Zachary Turcotte November 14, 2020 12:50

The Daily Spin – NFL Cash Game Edition – Week 10

Through all of the injuries and the virus spreading at a faster rate, the NFL has managed to keep moving along as week approach Week 10. This past week, the owners got together and put together a contingency playoff plan so that we may see as many as 16 teams go to the playoffs this year in the classic format of eight from each conference. It will not necessarily go to that format, so don’t get too excited just yet Viking fans, by there is at least a small glimmer of hope for fans around the league who may have counted their favorite team out after a rough start.

I am overjoyed to have the NFL as an escape this time of year. It is one of the few things that feels somewhat normal this fall. Waking up this morning with the second round of The Masters, college football coming on in a couple of hours and the NFL tomorrow helps to get through these hard weeks. I know that many of you have endured various struggles and hardships throughout 2020. It means so much to me personally that you have turned to our little community for an escape. Studying, watching and writing about my favorite sports has been a gift this year for me as my family has navigated its own ups and downs. Thank you all so much for being a part of this journey with us. You’ll never realize just how much your loyalty means to me.

Week 9 is now in the books and for many of us it was really profitable, but I know for others, it was frustrating as key injuries crippled some hopes early in games and ended any real sweat. The one that stood out the most was Justin Jackson and that one hit my team. I was fortunate in that my team played so well in the early games that I knew it would not matter for me, but I know that for lot of people, they were counting on a big game from Jackson to get them over the line for the week. He was set up to have a huge day and when you look at what backup, Kallen Ballage was able to do in coming off the bench, you get an idea of just how big of a day Jackson could have had if it had not been for sustaining an injury on the first play of the game. That was terrible luck for us, but he was 60-70% owned in most cash game lineups, so your path to victory was not shattered immediately by losing him to injury. That is one of the benefits of lining up with some of the key chalk plays in cash games and not going too far out on a ledge. When these types of injuries happen, you want them to affect as many of your opponents as possible to mitigate the damage.

The other injury that hurt lineups was with David Johnson sustaining a concussion early in the first quarter for the Texans against the Jags. This injury did not hit my team, but once again, if you look at his backup in Duke Johnson (20 touches, 16.3 DK points), you can see that David was likely going to get a fair amount of work, though I suspect Duke would have still gotten some touches as well. If both of these injuries hit your team last week, then it just was not going to be a week for you to make any money. It wrecks a fun sweat and hours of time spent researching your team, but it is a part of DFS that we learn to live with (and love when we dodge those bullets).

Now I get to do the fun part of the recap. I found my way back into the winner’s circle last week, though I will say, the build was tricky and I was fumbling around with it all the way up to the last 15 minutes or so before I finally settled on a team for the week.

Running back was a big decision for me last week. I knew I was going to play Justin Jackson at his price and going against the Raiders. He was cheap and likely to see 20 touches with 5-6 coming in the passing game. For defense, the Giants were also a no brainer for me in going up against a beat up Washington team that does not have a lot of weapons. I am usually looking for a punt on defense to save any extra dollars and it worked out great as they pressured Alex Smith often and created a few turnovers.

At Tight End, I also like to pay down when I can. Travis Kelce went off, so if you had the funds to fit him in, nice work. Hayden Hurst was always going to be the play for me. With Calvin Ridley down, his targets had to be spread to other players and Hurst has filled the gap left by Austin Hooper really well and has been a consistent contributor over the last month. This also made Julio Jones essentially a must play. At 7200 and with no Ridley and a beat up Denver secondary, all signs pointed to a big day for Julio. Though he had a rather pedestrian outing, the risk in leaving him off my roster was far too great with high expected ownership which did end up coming in at over 70%. Hurst gave us what we needed and while Julio fell a little short, it certainly did not hurt the team given his popularity.

The key decision for me ended up being at running back. Dalvin was the obvious play and I knew he would be heavily owned for the week. I also knew Chase Edmonds would be popular and would allow me to save a lot of cap space if I paid down. I was not in love with the idea of going down into the value range at QB. Drew Lock did end up putting up a ton of garbage time points so it would have worked out, but there was also a lot more risk in dropping down there and that has come back to bite us recently.

Ultimately, I decided I had to pay up to use Cook. The script was just too good at home on a fast track against a terrible defense. I thought that there was a good chance that Edmonds could see just as many touches as Cook, but in my mind, it all came down to answering the question: which player is more likely to be a bust? We’ve seen plenty of disappointing performances out of Cardinal RBs this season. We also know that Kyler Murray is a TD thief down near the goal line where as Kirk Cousins is rarely scampering in for a score for the Vikings. Cook was very chalky as well so the risk in fading him was that if he put up another monstrous effort, you could be drawing real thin the rest of the day. Obviously, the play worked out perfectly with Cook rushing for over 200 yards and two TDs while Edmonds touched the ball 28 times, but only managed a meager 11.8 DK points.

For the other WR spots, Jerry Jeudy was a go for me all week against the Falcons. Great matchup, great price and this time of year, playing indoors or in great weather is something not to be taken for granted. If you are not checking Windfinder.com each week, I suggest you work it into your crosscheck before lineup lock on Sunday (Hint hint, see Cleveland tomorrow). Jeudy started slowly, but went wild in the 2nd half and finished with over 100 yards and a TD.

The other WR spot was tougher to figure out. The 6k range was a little empty and I had no interest in following the algorithm folks down the Marcus Johnson rabbit hole. Sure, Johnson was cheap, but also unproven and in a terrible matchup against the Ravens. The folks that played him in cash got zinged, but that should have come as no surprise as that is always the risk you take when paying down for a 5th or 6th string guy.

I landed on Brandin Cooks for my other WR. Since the goose egg he put up against Minnesota, he had seen 30 targets in the three games leading up to the game with the Jags and he had killed them just three weeks ago. While I did not expect a carbon copy effort from him, 8-10 targets looked like a reasonable projection and sure enough, he saw nine targets for the third straight game. Though he only hauled in three balls, he made the most of them and ended up with 83 yards and a TD.

Cooks and Jeudy were really key for me last week. Neither was heavily owned as most of the pros made the punt play and dropped to Marcus Johnson so getting big games from them and having the punts blowup, provided a ton of leverage for the week.

At QB, I was either going to play Josh Allen, Deshaun Watson or Russell Wilson. Given the way the salary cap space came together for me, I was not going to have the funds at RB to get all the way up to Chase Edmonds for my other RB with Cooks. Again, the board was really light on middle range backs so Deejay Dallas was the next man up. This left me with enough cap space to pick whichever QB I wanted of the three that I liked up top so I settled in on the guy who has played like and MVP all season. It was a rough outing for the Hawks, but even in a losing effort where Wilson took a pounding, he still managed to post huge numbers by fantasy standards, though not nearly as good as what Allen put up as the Bills executed a fantastic game plan, going to the air on almost every offensive snap.

Even with the injury, I ended up with 171.6 points and a nice win for the week. We are getting to the time of year when the data starts to work really well in our favor. The combination of actually watching all the games and seeing where there are areas to exploit helps our cause this time of year, though there are never easy weeks when it comes to DFS. Keep working on your process and keep showing up in our slack chat. Little by little, you will find an edge if you are willing to put in the work with us.

 

Week 9 Team
Russell Wilson 7600 29.1
Dalvin Cook 8200 42.2
DeeJay Dallas 5000 11.9
Julio Jones 7200 16.4
Brandin Cooks 5500 17.3
Jerry Jeudy 4700 28.5
Hayden Hurst 4100 13.2
Justin Jackson 4900 0
Giants 2700 13
49900 171.6

 


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QB DK 50000 FD 60000
Kyler Murray 8000 16.0% 8800 14.7%
Russell Wilson 7700 15.4% 8900 14.8%
Josh Allen 7500 15.0% 8700 14.5%
Justin Herbert 6600 13.2% 8000 13.3%
Jared Goff 6500 13.0% 7400 12.3%
Tua Tagovailoa 5600 11.2% 6800 11.3%

 

Kyler Murray – There is not much that I need to tell you about Murray as he’s becoming the 2020 version of 2019 Lamar Jackson. As a dual threat run/pass QB, he’s on pace to throw for over 4000 yards and rush for 1000 yards which would make him the first in NFL history to achieve such lofty numbers. He’s at home this week against a middle of the road Bills defense and both teams should put up plenty of points. Given his 40 point upside, my inclination is to plug him in this week and work from there.

Russell Wilson – If you do come up a little short in salary this week, there is nothing wrong with dropping down to Russell Wilson who is sure to continue to put up big numbers. With it still looking unlikely that the Seahawks will have either Chris Carson or Carlos Hyde available on Sunday, Russell will have to throw often against the Rams in what is likely to be another shootout as the Seahawks have a historically bad secondary. His worst performance of the season yielded 24.9 DK fantasy points so the floor is always high even at this price point.

Jared Goff – Speaking of the Seahawks and their terrible secondary, Jared Goff is in play on the other side of the ball. I am not at all a Jared Goff fan and think he is the most overpaid QB in the league, but this is a matchup that the Rams should not be able to screw up. If Sean McVay decides to try to establish the run, it will be one more knock against him, but if they watch even five minutes of film, they should be able to copy the game plan of the Bills from the prior week where Josh Allen threw for 415 yards and 3 TDs. The Seahawks are also down two of their starting corners so Goff should have plenty of open options this week.

Tua Tagovailoa – If you really need the cap space, you can drop all the way down to Tua this week against the Chargers. As the Chargers are missing their top RBs, this is likely to be another up tempo game. In the last five games the Chargers have played, there has not been fewer than 57 points scored with four of those resulting in losses for the Chargers who have a middle of the road defense and are missing their top pass rusher as Joey Bosa is out for the week. Tua played much better last week in leading the Dolphins to a win over a tough Arizona team and managed to rush for 35 yards on the ground, a great bonus for us in selecting a QB each week.

 

RB DK 50000 FD 60000
Alvin Kamara 8200 16.4% 9000 15.0%
Aaron Jones 7100 14.2% 8800 14.7%
James Robinson 6600 13.2% 7300 12.2%
Miles Sanders 6400 12.8% 7700 12.8%
Chase Edmonds 6300 12.6% 7100 11.8%
Duke Johnson 5000 10.0% 5800 9.7%
Mike Davis 4000 8.0% 5400 9.0%

 

Aaron Jones – Alvin Kamara is always a reasonable option at RB but I think our dollars are best spent elsewhere so I think dropping down to Jones makes sense here. After 10 more days of rest, he should be all healed up and he’s taking on the worst defense in the league. It is expected to be windy and cold in Green Bay and when the Packers get ahead, the script projects well for Jones to see heavy usage on the ground in the second half.

Chase Edmonds – We are still waiting to hear if Kenyan Drake will be ruled out or not, but assuming he does not play, Edmonds would be in a great spot again this week. He did not give us the big fantasy numbers we were looking for a week ago, but the good news is that he carried the ball 25 times and caught three passes. If the Cards are going to give Edmonds the full workload again, then last week was likely the absolute floor of what we can expect for production as I would expect a 20+ DK point effort most weeks for that sort of volume.

Duke Johnson –.David Johnson remains sidelined with a concussion this week so Duke Johnson will be getting the majority of the work for the Texans against the Browns this week. We also need to factor in that the winds in Cleveland look awful this week, with gusts as high as 50 mph which means that the downfield passing game will be limited, another positive for Duke as the Browns will be forced to work more short passes into the game plan. Houston ranks 28th in the league against the run and 27th against pass catching RBs so this is a great spot for Duke to shine.

Mike Davis – Davis is a must start this week even in a really tough matchup against the Bucs who have the top ranked defense in the NFL. In mop up time alone against the Bucs when CMC went down with an injury, Davis caught eight passes for 74 yards. Given that he should be looking at 15-20 opportunities again this week, at $4k, he is way too cheap, even if the yards will not come easy.

 

WR DK 50000 FD 60000
DK Metcalf 7600 15.2% 8300 13.8%
Stefon Diggs 7500 15.0% 7900 13.2%
Michael Thomas 7400 14.8% 8500 14.2%
Keenan Allen 7100 14.2% 7800 13.0%
Cooper Kupp 6900 13.8% 7700 12.8%
Terry McLaurin 6800 13.6% 7000 11.7%
Tyler Lockett 6500 13.0% 7400 12.3%
Diontae Johnson 5200 10.4% 5700 9.5%
DeVante Parker 5000 10.0% 6000 10.0%

 

Seattle WRs (Metcalf & Lockett) – Every week this is going to be a problem. Tyler Lockett has become a low floor/high ceiling play which makes him a tough play in cash games, but for the third week in a row, he should theoretically have the best matchup on the field. The Rams are playing coy about Jaylen Ramsey and acting like he will not be shadowing Metcalf all day. If they go that route, the McVay is even more foolish than I thought as they will get torn apart for big plays. Right now, Lockett should spend most of the day covered by Troy Hill in the slot which would be a big advantage for Lockett, but as we have seen, nothing is guaranteed when trying to decide between Seattle receivers.

Rams WRs (Cupp/Woods/Reynolds) – I like all of the Rams receivers this week against the Seahawks. Seattle is awful this year against the pass which results in them being involved in a shootout every single week. Cupp and Woods are obvious options and with Shaq Griffin and Quinton Dunbar both out this week, both guys should be able to finds plenty of open space to get open. If you need cap space, Josh Reynolds should work at just $3500. He’s averaging 6.5 targets per game over the last four weeks and given the sweet matchup, it won’t take much for him to hit value.

Keenan Allen – Allen is a must start at this price until further notice. He is a target magnet and has seen the ball thrown his way 77 times in six full games with Justin Herbert (excludes the Saints game where Allen got hurt). The Dolphins have been good on the outside against receivers, but are weak in the slot as Nik Needham does not grade out very well this season.

Terry McLaurin – McLaurin is the one consistent piece on the Washington offense this season. He’s averaging just under ten targets per week and he’s finally indoors this week at Detroit which should give him the best opportunity to show off his electric speed against a subpar defense that ranks 25th in the league and 18th against the pass. Desmond Trufant will shadow him, but has been terrible this year so I expect McLaurin to have another big day.

Diontae Johnson – Playing Diontae Johnson in NFL cash games is a lot like playing Louis Oosthuizen in PGA. You are always holding your breath waiting to see if he will get injured early and put up a zero. In the four games where he’s been a full participant, he’s had 48 targets, an average of 12 per game. If he is anywhere near those numbers this week against the Bengals, he’s a fantastic value for the price against the 25th ranked pass defense in the league.

Devante Parker – The Dolphins are a little thin at receiver this week as Preston Williams is out with an injury which should leave Parker as the primary target in the passing game for the Dolphins this week against the Chargers. With Rb Myles Gaskin still out with an injury, the Dolphins will need to throw the ball to keep up with the Chargers this week. The Chargers have given up at least 29 points every week over the last five games so this could be a big week for Parker.

 

TE DK 50000 FD 60000
Darren Waller 5900 11.8% 7000 11.7%
TJ Hockerson 5100 10.2% 6200 10.3%
Noah Fant 4900 9.8% 5700 9.5%
Eric Ebron 4400 8.8% 5400 9.0%
Dallas Goedert 4200 8.4% 5800 9.7%

 

Darren Waller – No Kittle and no Kelce on the slate leaves Waller as the best of the group by a good distance. He’s the best pass catching option for the Raiders and the Broncos are ranked 15th against the TE this season. He’s averaging nine targets per game this season and his price makes him affordable if you’ve got the available funds.

TJ Hockerson – Washington ranks last in the NFL against the TE which would make this a great spot for TJ, but he did injure his toe this week in practice so he’s got the dreaded ‘questionable’ tag going into Sunday. With Kenny Golladay still out, he should pick up an additional share of the targets, but we’ll have to wait until Sunday to see his status.

Noah Fant – Fant hurt his ankle on his first reception last week, but did return to the game later and caught two more passes and seems to be healthy again this week. If he can stay on the field, he should be looking at 6-8 targets again this week against the Raiders.

Dallas Goedert – Goedert is likely our play this week. He is cheap, Zach Ertz is out and he’s up against the Giants who rank 28th in the league against the pass and 24th against the TE. Even when he’s splitting time with Ertz, he’s in play most weeks, but as the primary option getting all the work, the Eagles are likely to throw him the ball at least ten times, giving him huge upside potential in a great matchup. He will almost certainly be the chalk so I would recommend locking him in and making decisions at other postions.

 

DEF DK 50000 FD 60000
Steelers 4400 8.8% 5000 8.3%
Packers 3700 7.4% 4800 8.0%
Washington 3200 6.4% 3800 6.3%
Saints 3000 6.0% 4500 7.5%
Giants 2700 5.4% 3900 6.5%

 

Packers – The weather should be cold and windy and the Jags are again playing rookie, Jake Luton. It’s one thing to play well in good weather at home, it is another to go on the road to Green Bay and to play well when the Jags will likely be well behind and having to throw to stay in the game.

Washington – Washington has the 6th ranked defense in the league and the top pass defense. While they have not been as strong against the run, the Lions are a RB by committee team at this point so it is hard to envision them moving the ball well, especially without their top WR, Kenny Golladay. Washington averages 3.5 sacks per game and should be able to cause plenty of problems for the less than mobile, Matthew Stafford.

Saints – Saints played well last week against the Bucs and this week, they get Nick Mullens and the 49ers at home. The 49ers are built to run the ball, but the Saints rank 5th against the run and the Niners are still missing their top two RBs. With Deebo Samuel and George Kittle still out, there is no real path for the 49ers to keep up with the Saints this week.

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Zachary Turcotte
By Zachary Turcotte November 14, 2020 12:50

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