FanDuel NFL Value Plays: Week 4
Let’s find some low-cost value plays at each position so you can mix/match your lineups to take down your tournaments this week. To do so, I’ll set a limit of $6,500 and we’ll have to go below the line to secure our values. We’ll look at quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and tight ends, and I’ll throw a couple of items around kicker and defense as well.
Any questions, hit me up in the Comments Area or reach out to me on Twitter @JasonWalker_72.
Brain Hoyer – CHI vs. DET – $6,000 – Hoyer came out of the gates, filling in for Jay Cutler, by zinging 49 pass attempts against the supposed-grind-it-out Cowboys in Week 3, completing 30 for 317 yards and a pair of scores. This week? The Lions, who are last in Football Outsiders pass defense efficiency and next to last per numberFire. It’s a 47.5 point total and the Bears are 2.5 point underdogs here, meaning we may see Zing It Around 2: Electric Boogaloo in Week 4, all for the low, low salary of 6K.
Jordan Howard – CHI vs. DET – $5,600 – Even though the Bears should toss it around a bit, don’t overlook the poorness of the Lions run defense, either. Detroit is bottom five in run defense as well and, with Jeremy Langford out now for a few weeks, rookie Jordan Howard is set to take some carries. Howard has already graded out as a more efficient runner by both Pro Football Focus and Football Outsiders and should get the majority of the carries and even had six targets from Hoyer last week.
Spencer Ware – KC at PIT – $6,200 – I’m making the assumption it’ll be one more week away from the field for Jamaal Charles, of whom Chiefs coach Andy Reid had yet to make a decision as of Wednesday night. Ware had 20 carries last week and finally had a less than excellent day, but the Jets are a top five run defense so far this season and the Steelers, while being solid, aren’t as dominant. Ware still had three times the snaps as Charcandrick West and with this game also at 47.5, Ware should be very active.
Frank Gore – IND vs. JAC – $6,100 – SUN/MON SLATE – Over in London, early Sunday morning here in the States, Gore can resume his solid, if unexciting 2016 season. Indy’s rush rankings in second level and open field yards are in the bottom five of the league. Gore has pretty much been able to take what the line gives him and little else. With the Colts a 2.5 point favorite on a 49 point Vegas total, Gore’s probability of a TD goes up, as does his position on making value.
Tevin Coleman – ATL vs. CAR – $6,100 – A 50-point game total in the ATL, Coleman has been getting the best of the red zone and inside the 10 carries for the Falcons, a major reason why it was he, and not Devonta Freeman, who clocked three TDs last week. The Panthers have a top 10 defense, but obviously Vegas, who has the Falcons with an implied 23.5 points, feels like the Falcons are going to get through.
Michael Crabtree – OAK at BAL – $6,500 – The top three ranked passing attack of the Raiders take on a top ten defense in Baltimore. What gives? Well, considering the coast-to-coast-to-coast travel in which the Raiders engaged over the last few days, it may stand to reason that the defense will be a bit fatigued, weakening an already weakened defensive backfield. Vegas already has the Raiders as three point underdogs in Baltimore, so Derek Carr may have to pass quite a bit in this one. Crabtree had 11 more targets and eight catches last week and continues to work the lunchpail routes for Carr.
Tyrell Williams – SD vs. NO – $6,400 – Williams stepped forward even a little more in Keenan Allen’s absence, getting targeted nine times for six catches. The Saints’ pass defense is about as bad as the Colts, so Williams will continue to get targeted by Philip Rivers.
Michael Thomas – NO at SD – $5,300 – Speaking of the Saints, Thomas has 22 targets in three weeks, including an 11 target game last week. Thomas looks to be continuing the Marques Colston legacy, catching seven passes for 71 yards and a score. San Diego has been a somewhat solid pass defense thus far in the season, but Vegas has the Saints as a three point underdog, with 25 implied points, which looks to mean they will be passing often to chase the Chargers’ scoring on the Saints bad, bad defense.
Steve Smith – BAL vs. OAK – $6,100 – The explosiveness is gone, but the savvy (and opportunities) remain. Smith was targeted 11 times and caught eight for 87 yards last week. As discussed previously, the Raiders may find themselves a bit fatigued on a 1pm EST start after going from Nashville to Oakland to Baltimore in less than a week, and the Lions showed that smaller receivers, like Smith, can cause problems for the bigger defensive backfield like the Raiders have.
Kevin White – CHI vs. DET – $5,500 – White was targeted on a whopping 14 times by Hoyer last week and now gets to play the Lions with that solid game total and the Bears as passing underdogs. Is the connection between Hoyer and White real is a question you’ll only have to spend $5,500 to find out.
Dennis Pitta – BAL vs. OAK – $5,400 – Along the lines of Smith, Pitta checks in with a solid follow up to his big Week 2 by being targeted eight times for six catches, though for only 42 yards. The Raiders, though early, are averaging 81 yards to opposing tight ends (and they didn’t even get Delanie Walker last week in TEN), ranking 23rd in defensive efficiency there, per Football Outsiders.
Hunter Henry – SD vs. NO – $4,500 – Henry stepped in for Antonio Gates and turned in a five catch, 76 yard performance and now goes against a Saints pass defense that has been average against the position. But Henry doesn’t need much to get over the value line for his paltry minimum salary and the 53+ game total should help to push him there once again, if Gates misses more time as expected.
Dion Sims – MIA at CIN – $4,500 – THURSDAY – Sims has stepped into the TE1 role for the Dolphins and considering their eighth rank in Pass Play Percentage, and the Bengals’ 26th rank in defensive efficiency at the TE position, Sims is in a good spot to add onto his four catch, 46 yard performance in Week 3.
Kickers and Defense:
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears – $4,500 – The scoring could be high, as noted above, but the Lions’ defensive line is ranked 12th in Adjusted Sack Rate while the Bears offensive line is ranked 28th in the same. This could force Hoyer into some mistakes or sacks that pad the Lions defense score to make value at 4.5K.
Good luck! – Jason