FanDuel NFL Value Plays: Week 5

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 in this edition of FanDuel NFL Value Plays: Week 5. 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 at IND – $6,000 – Instant Replay. Last week, Hoyer was the same $6,000 in a sloppy matchup against the Lions at Soldier Field, and while Matthew Stafford laid a prodigious egg, Hoyer made 3x value, scoring 19.80 FanDuel points on 302 yards and two scores. Because they were winning their pass play percentage was down, a game script that Vegas doesn’t figure will replicate against Andrew Luck and the Colts. The game score is a healthy 47.5 and the Bears a four point underdog, so Hoyer will likely have to return to the 65% pass play percentage they enjoyed before the slushiness of last week.

Running Backs:

Terrence West – BAL vs. WAS – $6,400 – West ran 22 times for 113 yards and a touchdown against the Raiders last week. You might say, it was the Raiders, they’re the worst run defense, per Football Outsiders’ Adjusted Line Yards defensive metric! You know who is second to last? The Washington Redskins.

Jalen Richard – OAK vs. SD – $4,900 –  Everyone is going to be on fellow Raider DeAndre Washington ($4,700) as the word is he will be leading a 60/40 time share with Richard. However, Richard has been a more efficient runner, per Football Outsiders, with a 36.8% DVOA as compared to Washington’s 10.7% rating. Richard has also out targeted and out snapped Washington this season, and had more red zone attempts. Throw in the idea that Richard will likely be much less owned than Washington while being $200 more, and he is a great leverage play.

Jerick McKinnon – MIN vs. HOU – $6,200 – McKinnon enjoyed a solid Monday night effort, running 18 times for 85 yards and a score. And, while Houston does have a good defense, they are surprisingly the 30th ranked rush defense overall by Football Outsiders. Looking deeper, the Texans are worst defending the run on the edges, exactly where the Vikings are best at run blocking and McKinnon running. Measure in the game script, which has the Vikings as a six-point favorite at home, and McKinnon looks good to reprise his Monday night success.

Wide Receivers:

Steve Smith – BAL vs. WAS – $6,300 – Back to back 11 target, eight catch games have made his salary raise exactly $0.00. Take advantage. Smith is back as Flacco’s main target and has scored 12.70 and 21.10 in the last two weeks, has a positive matchup against Kendall Fuller this week and the Ravens are expected to score over 24 points.

Sammie Coates – PIT vs. NYJ – $5,300 – Great matchup for the Steelers’ passing attack as the Jets are 30th in pass defense, per Football Outsiders and a tremendous running team. Coates had eight targets last week for six catches/79yards and has a plus matchup against Marcus Williams.

Quincy Enunwa – NYJ at PIT – $6,200 – Game script will have the Jets throwing the ball, again, and as long as Decker is out, as it looks like he will be, Enunwa has the matchup and targets (18 in last two weeks) to succeed here.

Eddie Royal – CHI at IND – $5,700 – Did you know that Royal has only three fewer targets this season than Alshon Jeffery? Royal had seven last week, the week that Kevin White was lost to a fibula injury, and has a strong matchup against Patrick Robinson this week in Indianapolis. With Hoyer tossing the ball around to Royal already and the game script calling for more, Royal is a great value here.

Tight Ends:

Cameron Brate – TB at CAR – $5,400 – Brate has trailed only Greg Olsen in targets among tight ends the last two weeks and faces the Panthers in Charlotte (maybe, check the hurricane impact first), who have been a bottom five ranked team in defending the position.

Zach Miller- CHI at IND – $5,400 – Have already discussed the Bears passing attack at length, so here is a note on the Colts defending the tight end position. Per Football Outsiders, Indy is ranked 32nd in defending tight ends. That’s dead last, folks.

Jesse James – PIT vs. NYJ – $4,500 – James has not quite been the Heath Miller doppelganger we thought he may be, but the Jets are ranked seventh worst in defending the position and the Steelers will have to pass for success to beat the Jets this week.


Kickers and Defense:

Philadelphia Eagles at Detroit Lions – The Eagles have the second best pass rush in Adjusted Sack Rate, per Football Outsiders, and the Lions have the eighth highest pass play percentage in the league. The Eagles have a three point favorite line right now, tilting the game script slightly in the defense’s favor.

Mason Crosby – GB vs. NYG – $4,500 – Minimum price for a kicker on the third highest implied total of the slate (27.8) and second largest favorite (-7.5). And, the Packers are home after a bye week. Splendid.

Good luck! – Jason