While Andy Dalton hit for me last week, it probably didnít matter if you didnít have big names like Ezekiel Elliott, Leonard Fournette and DeAndre Hopkins. Without at least one of those three, you likely finished outside of the money. While itís important to find those big names, itís also important to not select guys that get severe injuries. I recommended both Dalvin Cook and Chris Carson and unfortunately, both are done for the season. Letís wish them well and hope that none of my picks for the rest of the season get major injuries.
Dak Prescott, DAL vs. GB ($12,700): Similar to previous weeks, the Cowboys will be forced to pass in this game due to an ineffective defense. Even if thatís not the case, Prescott has produced at a decent rate with at least 17 fantasy points in every game this season. Itís possible the Packers stack the box and force Prescott to pass, which should be a good thing in a game with an over/under above 50 points. For cheaper options, I suggest Carson Palmer ($11,000) facing a beat-up Eagles secondary.
Leonard Fournette, JAX at PIT ($13,300): LeíVeon Bell ($18,000) will be the popular play, but I canít recommend him coming off a 39-touch performance. For a few thousand cheaper, Fournette provides a high amount of touches and already has four touchdowns. And even if the Steelers blowout the Jags, Fournette should still get at least 15 touches as heís active in the passing game (12 receptions), so itís not like his value is gone when Jacksonville has to go into pass-mode. As of note, he was added to the injury report Wednesday, so keep an eye on that, although it may be an early-week precaution.
Duke Johnson Jr., CLE vs. NYJ ($9,800): I was going to use Johnson last week, but didnít pull the trigger. With an easier matchup, Johnson should again see plenty of action as heís been the best thing about the Browns offense the last two weeks. In addition to becoming an important piece in the passing game (15 receptions), he has two rushing touchdowns in the last two games.
Jordy Nelson, GB at DAL ($15,300): Teammate Randall Cobb ($12,600) is worth a look if you need to save money, but itís hard to ignore Nelsonís usage in the red zone. Nelson already has five touchdowns in three games and against a beatable secondary, should add at least five receptions to another touchdown in a game that has the second-highest over/under of the week (behind Pats/Bucs).
T.Y. Hilton, IND vs. SF ($11,300): The last time Hilton was at home, he went off with seven catches for 153 yards. While expecting those exact results may be a stretch, heís a much better value than pricier receivers like Golden Tate ($11,900) and Dez Bryant ($12,300). Hilton faces another beatable defense and should once again see plenty of Jacoby Brissettís targets that should lead to close to 100 yards.
Benjamin Watson, BAL at OAK ($7,000): My quest to find value tight ends has not gone well in recent weeks, but Watson could change that. He has eight catches in the last two weeks in which the Ravens offense has done nothing, so that's a good sign. In this matchup, Watson faces a Raiders defense that is No. 24 against tight ends, according to Football Outsidersí DVOA. The Raiders have also given up a touchdown to a tight end in the last two games and Watson should be a red-zone factor, as well. Watson popped up on the injury report Wednesday and if heís a game-time call, Iíd look to Jared Cook ($7,700) or Evan Engram ($7,800) in the same price range.
Stefon Diggs, MIN at CHI ($13,700): This isnít my favorite week for some high-end options, so I went to the second tier with Diggs. No matter the quarterback, Diggs has gotten looks and, against a defense battling injuries, should turn those looks into points. The Bears are 31st in the league against No. 1 WRs (per DVOA) so thatís even more of a reason to take Diggs, who had a bad game last week, yet still caught five passes for 98 yards. For the cheaper crowd, DeMarco Murray ($10,100) is the value play at 100 bucks less than teammate Derrick Henry.
Jarvis Landry, MIA vs. TEN ($11,000): Miamiís offense is a mess, but itís not often that a team struggles to surpass 10 points in three straight weeks, especially one coached by Adam Gase. Even if the Dolphins canít do anything against a Titans defense that just got exploited, Landry will still get his looks and should reach 10 fantasy points at a minimum.
Buffalo Bills at CIN ($5,000): Every week there seems to be one great defense in a good situation that comes at a discount. Buffalo is the pick after accruing 11 sacks and six interceptions through the first four games, averaging 10.25 fantasy points per week. The Bengals have looked better against bad defenses (most recently the Browns), but the Bills are not a bad defense. They most recently stopped the Falcons to 17 points in Atlanta.