TOURNAMENTS (GPP – GUARANTEED PRIZE POOL)
QB: Alex Smith (KC, $33)
Not only is Smith coming off his best fantasy performance of the year, but he’ll be facing an Oakland defense that he ripped up for 342 yards and three TDs in Week 7. With the Chiefs struggling on defense, the odds of a shootout are great this week, and Andy Reid will have no choice but to continue putting the ball in Smith’s hands while using aggressive play-calling. In a game that could make or break their season, don’t look for the veteran signal caller to hold anything back. It’s hard to imagine the Raiders can slow him down, especially after giving up six TD passes to the trio of Geno Smith, Jay Cutler and Trevor Siemian over the last four weeks.
RB: Lamar Miller (HOU, $24)
Overall, Miller’s been a disappointment this season. He’s failed to top 3.0 yards per carry in four of his last six games, but despite his frustrating performance, he’s also quite capable of taking advantage of cake matchups, as he’s posted at least 5.5 yards per tote twice in his last five games. This week, he’ll face the 49ers, who’ve been one of the worst defenses in the league against the run. Recently, Seahawks running backs accounted for 107 yards while Giants running backs touched them up for 138 yards, and with Miller’s ability as both a runner and receiver, he’s clearly in position to have one of his best games of the season. It also should help that the Texans should be able to play with the lead against this opponent on their home field, which would increase Miller’s rushing attempts.
WR: Josh Gordon (CLE, $21)
Since Aaron Rodgers is still a week away from returning to the lineup for the Packers, this could easily be a rare game in which the Browns can run their offense without being in desperation mode for the majority of the contest. Should that be the case, DeShone Kizer will face a defense that’s forced to respect both the run and the pass. That combination, along with the porous Packers secondary, should provide Gordon with plenty of opportunities to come up with chunk plays. Not only is he facing a very weak secondary, but he looked as good as ever, running by elite CB Casey Hayward on many plays, even on some in which Kizer failed to connect with him. With another week of chemistry between the QB and WR, Gordon should have a fantastic ceiling.
QB: Brett Hundley (GB, $28), Tom Savage (HOU, $20)
RB: LeGarrette Blount (PHI, $21), Dion Lewis (NE, $25), Carlos Hyde (SF, $25)
WR: Zay Jones (Buf, $11), JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT, $19), DeAndre Hopkins (HOU, $40)
TE: Hunter Henry (LAC, $21), Jared Cook (Oak, $19)
DST: Pittsburgh Steelers ($17), Philadelphia Eagles ($18)
CASH GAMES (H2H, 50/50s and DOUBLE UPS)
Derek Carr (OAK, $31)
Simply stated, the Chiefs haven’t been able to slow down the top QBs they’ve faced since Week 4. Aside from Ben Roethlisberger, they’ve allowed multiple TD passes to four different QBs since that time. The last time Carr faced this unit, he ripped them up for 417 yards and three TDs. Although it would be unwise to project those type of numbers this time around, he should have little trouble earning value in a must-win contest that is a projected shootout. It’ll also help that Michael Crabtree will be coming back from suspension, and hopefully Amari Cooper will also return after missing last week’s game. That’ll help Carr take advantage of the main Kansas City weakness, which is that they allow the second most fantasy points to wide receivers.
Mark Ingram (NO, $31)
On paper, the Falcons are well above average in terms of slowing down opposing running backs. However, when looking at the schedule they’ve faced, they’ve matched up against very few teams with solid rushing attacks during the season. Yes, just a single running back’s gone over 76 yards against them in 2017, but the New Orleans offensive line should have little trouble imposing their will against the Falcons defensive front. In a must-win divisional road game, look for the Saints to control this contest with their rushing attack, to set up Drew Brees with manageable passing situations. The last time Ingram faced this defense (Week 17 in 2016), he rushed for 103 yards and a TD while adding an additional 29 yards through the air, and he should have similar success running behind a much better line this time around.
LeSean McCoy (BUF, $35)
There are very few players on the slate with a safer floor than McCoy this week. He’ll be facing an Indianapolis defense that’s allowed at least 89 combined yards to a running back in every game since Week 6. Shady has gotten over 20 touches in most of his games this year with the exceptions being the games in which the Bills were blown out. It’s extremely unlikely that Colts will have any type of significant lead throughout this contest, which should ensure that McCoy gets roughly 25 touches. As a result, his typical floor is rock solid, but facing an injury-depleted defense, he has massive upside as well.
Jamison Crowder (WAS, $18)
Based on the fact that the Chargers have been one of the best defenses in the league against opposing wide receivers, this wouldn’t appear to be a good spot for Crowder. There’s no doubt that the lethal Los Angeles pass rush will wreak havoc on Washington’s decimated offensive line, but that should result in the slot receiver being extremely busy as Kirk Cousins is forced to get rid of the ball quickly. Crowder’s been targeted an average of 10 times per game over there last five contests, and he’s yet to post fewer than 67 yards in any of those matchups. His solid floor along with his opportunities makes him an excellent cash game play this week.
Dez Bryant (DAL, $24)
While the Cowboys showed signs of life in last week’s huge victory over the Redskins, Bryant looked like a playmaker for the first time in quite a while. With their season on the line, offensive coordinator Scott Linehan will likely look to build upon his best receiver’s last outing by continuing to ride this budding momentum. On the other side of the ball, the Giants are reeling, as they’ve lost a number of players to injury including top corner Janoris Jenkins, and they’re no longer a strong defensive unit, which should help Bryant capitalize on this matchup.
A.J. Green (CIN, $33)
Though certainly not a terrible unit against the pass, Chicago’s allowed the 10th most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers this year. Their biggest weakness is allowing TD receptions to top-tier WRs, but they’ve allowed just a single receiver to post 100 yards against them. That said, Chicago lacks a dynamic cornerback, and Andy Dalton’s never shy about force-feeding the ball to his star receiver in favorable circumstances. Green’s scored in half of his games this year while going over 63 yards in seven different contests, and he’s just the type of floor play with potential for upside that makes him a great choice in this home matchup.
Travis Kelce (KC, $29)
Aside from a 39-yard effort in Week 12, Kelce’s been an absolute stud over the last five weeks. During that time, he’s scored four touchdowns while posting at least 94 yards three times. There aren’t many players at any position producing at such a consistently high level. He’ll be facing an Oakland defense that he inexplicably saw just five targets against in Week 7, but he did find the end zone. However, the Raiders have coughed up 99 yards and a TD to Evan Engram and 84 yards and a TD to Julius Thomas over their last four games, so this should be another strong week for Kelce.
Jacksonville Jaguars ($21)
Russell Wilson will likely be running for his life this week. The Jaguars lead the league in sacks, and they’ll get to take aim at one of the worst offensive lines in the league. With Seattle unlikely to run the ball effectively against this defense, Wilson will be forced to challenge the excellent Jacksonville secondary. Unfortunately, it’s unlikely his receivers will find much separation, and that should ensure that he’ll be under siege all day, leading to a solid fantasy performance from the Jaguars.
QB: Tom Brady (NE $40), Jameis Winston (TB, $26)
RB: Samaje Perine (WAS, $22), Marshawn Lynch (OAK, $21)
WR: Adam Thielen (MIN, $32), Davante Adams (GB, $29), Alshon Jeffery (PHI, $24)
TE: Jason Witten (DAL, $17), Austin Seferian-Jenkins (NYJ, $14)
DST: Cincinnati Bengals ($17), Los Angeles Chargers ($20)