CFL Daily Fantasy DraftKings Week 15 – Life of Bryant
There are a few good value options to pick from on other teams but this week it is essentially the Eskimos and then everyone else for CFL daily fantasy options on DraftKings. Mike Reilly, Duke Williams, and Bryant Mitchell are among the top projected players at their positions and the top values as well giving some pretty clear direction for lineup construction. It's kind of ridiculous actually that Mitchell's price remains sub-$5K when it's fair to expect production like that of a $7K option. The Duron Carter revenge game narrative should also provide some good entertainment and in preparation I offer you an ode to Duron:
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Implied Team Totals
Winnipeg – 31
Edmonton – 28.5
Saskatchewan – 27
Ottawa – 25.5
Hamilton – 25
Toronto – 24
BC – 23
Montreal – 21
As of publication there still isn't a line or over/under available for the Hamilton versus BC matchup on Saturday as line makers are still likely waiting to see if Brandon Banks or Alex Green will be available for the TiCats this week. Both are expected to be out. The listed team totals for Hamilton and BC are my own projection assuming both Banks and Green to be out. Of the rest of the implied team totals Saskatchewan and Winnipeg are probably the most surprising numbers as both offences have struggled to produce much of anything in recent weeks. It would seem that both of these implied totals assume touchdowns will be scored by D/ST.
On the weather front, there's really nothing concerning as all three outdoor games should seem cool but moderate temperatures for the fall and light breezes in the 5-10 mph range. It's nice to finally have a weekend of games unfettered by wind and rain concerns.
Mike Reilly, EDM - $11600
Jeremiah Masoli, HAM - $10900
Matt Nichols, WPG - $8800
Mike Reilly makes an expected resurgence to the top of the quarterback projections after Jeremiah Masoli had a disastrous Week 14 outing. Reilly leads the league in rushing touchdowns (11) and passing yards (3943) and is second in passing touchdowns (26). That's a pretty dominant fantasy weapon to have in lineups. Ottawa presents a below average matchup in terms of projected pace and yards per pass attempt allowed but their 18 total passing touchdowns allowed this season has them giving up touchdowns through the air at the third highest rate in the league. Ottawa has also allowed a league high 16 rushing touchdowns so it could be a big night for the Eskimos offence on the scoreboard even if the yardage comes with diminished efficiency.
Jeremiah Masoli is likely to be without another two of his biggest weapons as both Alex Green and Brandon Banks are expected to miss this weeks' contest. Their absence led to the TiCats offence bogging down versus Calgary last week, giving him his worst fantasy performance of the season. The Lions present a little bit more positive matchup as they allow the second most plays per game to opposing offences (59). However, the Lions allow below average rates of yards per pass and rush as well as below average rates of touchdowns per pass and rush which makes Masoli a risky play. If the loss of Saunders, Williams, Banks, and Green weren't enough to scare players off of the TiCats offence, the matchup should certainly give players pause in considering Masoli in Week 15.
Similar to Masoli, Matt Nichols is coming off his worst fantasy performance of the 2018 season but unlike Masoli, he finds himself in about as good a matchup as he could hope for to get back on track. Nichols has struggled this season – with more interceptions than touchdown passes – but the Alouettes are a great draw as they allow the most plays per game to opposing offences (62.8) along with the third most yards per pass attempt (8.61) and the second highest rate of passing touchdowns per attempt. The likely return of Weston Dressler this week should also be a boost to Nichols. If he's going to turn his season around, this is the week to do it. At a deeply discounted rate to other starting quarterbacks, he presents the best value option at the position.
Andrew Harris, WPG - $8000
William Powell, OTT - $8200
James Wilder Jr., TOR - $7900
William Stanback, MTL - $5300
With Alex Green likely out for the TiCats this week, Harris is back to the top of the projections at the position. While he's almost certain to outperform his 4.4 point stumble, the Alouettes defence may not be as terrible as their record would indicate. They allow a league low 4.87 yards per attempt, so Harris's value will likely have to come through increased volume – which projections expect – and through work as a receiver. In their Week 2 matchup, the Bombers totaled 56 points but Harris' main fantasy contributions were as a receiver with 6 catches for 68 yards and a touchdown. The Als are most vulnerable through the air, so PPR scoring may be Harris' edge this week.
William Powell somewhat unexpectedly blew the doors off the Roughriders stout rush defence last weekend with long touchdown runs of 19 and 69 yards on his way to a 29.5 fantasy point performance. That was his fourth performance in his past five games with over 80 yards rushing as the Redblacks appear to have stabilized his work load. Edmonton allows the fewest plays to opposing offences on the slate however, so Powell will have to be efficient with the touches he gets. Thankfully, the Eskimos allow the second most yards per carry to opposing offences (5.71) and the highest rate of rushing touchdowns per attempt in the league so Powell should be able to make the most of his opportunities.
After being one of the most electrifying players in CFL Fantasy one year ago at this time, it's hard to get too excited about Wilder in the current version of the Argos offence. The Argos average the fewest yards per rush in the CFL (4.51), and Wilder himself is averaging only 4.7 yards per carry – a full 2.4 yards per attempt fewer than in his breakout 2017 season. Prior to last week the Riders presented one of the toughest matchups in the league for opposing rushers but Powell's explosion has bumped their yards per rush allowed to the third highest in the league (5.15). If the advent of Duron Carter breathes a bit more life into the Argos offence, this may be the turnaround Wilder needs, but he certainly represents a contrarian play at this salary level.
William Stanback was not awe inspiring in Week 14 but at this salary he doesn't have to do much to be a great value. He received all but one of the carries out of the Alouettes backfield last week, so his workload should be predictable. Winnipeg allows the second fewest yards per carry on the slate (4.98) but they have allowed a league high 16 rushing touchdowns to this point which is good for the second highest rate of rushing touchdowns per attempt in the league. If Stanback can catch a few passes and rush for 40-50 yards he's a great value this week.
Duke Williams, EDM - $10000
Brandon Banks, HAM - $9800
Luke Tasker, HAM - $8800
Diontae Spencer, OTT - $9100
Greg Ellingson, OTT - $8100
Brad Sinopoli, OTT - $8900
Darvin Adams, WPG - $8200
DeVier Posey, BC - $5300
Bryant Mitchell, EDM - $4600
Duron Carter, TOR - $4400
Duke Williams is one for the few elite talents left at the receiver not currently on injured reserve and even he had an injury scare in his last game. Williams is second in the league in targets (110), while leading in yards (1235) and receiving TDs (9). With Derel Walker still sidelined, he is the focus of the top passing offence in the league. The Redblacks allow a below average 7.99 yards per target but allow the third highest rate of receiving touchdowns per attempt. Williams is the clear top receiver on the slate, making him a priority spend. His teammate Bryant Mitchell has also been given regular playing time due to the loss of Walker and is another great receiving option versus Ottawa. Mitchell comes in at a very affordable mit-tier price which makes the unfathomable option of an Eskimos double stack a real possibility for a team with the second highest implied total on the slate.
With all of Chris Williams, Jalen Saunders, Brandon Banks, and Alex Green likely on the shelf for this week's matchup versus the Lions, there's really few safer locks for 8+ targets than Luke Tasker. The TiCats offence had already become very condensed to Banks, Tasker, and Green in the previous few weeks and injuries will only further cement Tasker's importance to his offence. As witnessed in the Calgary game, there becomes a law of diminishing returns for condensed offences as, at some point, the whole unit bogs down and increased volume cannot make up for decreased efficiency. Luke Tasker may be the case study for that. The BC defence has been drastically improved over the past month – now allowing the fourth fewest yards per target and second lowest rate of receiving TDs per target on the slate – so unless Toliver, Lawrence, Jones and company can improve their play it will be difficult for Tasker to make much of his increased opportunities.
The Ottawa trio of Spencer, Ellingson, and Sinopoli make up the next group in the projections. Of that group, Spencer and Ellingson certainly seem to be the most interesting options as Sinopoli's torrid start to 2018 has faded in the second half of the season. Also worth noting here is how many of the targets in the Ottawa offence condensed to this group as the Redblacks spent much of the past game in three or four receiver sets to give Harris a clean pocket to work from versus the Riders pass rush. With the Edmonton rush only a little behind Saskatchewan in the sacks category, Ottawa may use a similar approach which kept Rhymes off the field for much of the game. Edmonton allows the second most yards per target to opposing receivers on the slate and has allowed the most 30+ yard plays in the league to this point (26), so the yardage totals should certainly be there for this group.
If players are planning to go the value route at QB with Nichols, then it makes sense to take some shots with Winnipeg receivers as well. Darvin Adams has been the most consistent target for Nichols during his Bombers tenure and he has an inviting matchup with Montreal that allows the third most yards per target and second most receiving touchdowns per target in the league. Weston Dressler may also be a mid-tier option but, coming off injury, he carries a lot more risk than Adams.
Another mid-tier option that carries quite a bit of risk is DeVier Posey. His size makes him an excellent redzone option for a team that badly needs scoring threats in the passing game but having Jonathan Jennings under centre holds down the projections for much of the offence. In three starts for the Lions this season Jennings could not crack even 200 passing yards making all the Lions receivers high risk options. Posey's price tag relative to his scoring ability makes him a consideration but certainly a volatile one, especially in a matchup with a Hamilton defence that allows the fewest yards per target on the slate.
The other bargain receiver option is maybe the most unexpected member of the bargain bin this season as Duron Carter has fallen all the way to the $4K range after having been an $8K receiver only a year ago. Carter has the talent to be a $8K fantasy receiver again, so his upside is immense if he gets a full workload versus his old team, the Roughriders. It's a difficult matchup but when Carter is motivated he's nearly matchup proof.
Saskatchewan Roughriders - $5000
Winnipeg Blue Bombers - $5300
Hamilton Tiger-Cats - $4400
The Riders defence had a down week versus the max-protect scheme of the Redblacks that had six to seven blockers on each play slowing the pass rush to a stand still. Toronto has allowed the third fewest sacks in the league this season (20) which doesn't seem like an appealing matchup but they have given up a league high 29 turnovers which should give the Riders defence ample opportunities to turn in some big plays.
The Blue Bombers defence gets a bump this week as they face an Als offence that has allowed a league high 43 sacks and a similarly high 27 turnovers. The Bombers should be healthier across the board coming off the bye and will look to take advantage of Manziel's turnover propensity on Saturday.
The TiCats, coming off a losing effort, but one in which they created two defensive touchdowns, will look to continue that effectiveness versus another turnover prone quarterback in Jonathan Jennings. In Jennings three previous starts this season he has a 3:2 interception to TD ratio making the Tiger-Cats a reasonable cheap defence option.
Hard to believe we're 2/3rds of the way through the season already. Enjoy the triple-header and good luck in all your contests!
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