We’re moving on to Week 6 of the National Football League regular season, and it has been an up and down time for DFS lately. Keep picking on those weak defenses, because the longer we go into the season, the truer those trends will become. Through two or three games, it is hard to gauge whether a team has just played a couple of poor games, or if they’re really as bad as the statistics describe. However, through four or five games, it is no longer an oddity but a regularity.
The New Orleans Saints heads up the teams for DFS owners to pick on. They rank last in total defense, allowing 409.7 yards per game while yielding 27.3 points per outing. The San Francisco 49ers are giving up 28.0 PPG and 406.8 YPG, so they’re another team to target. The Cleveland Browns have found a way to pick up a couple of victories with their offense, but the defense is doing them no favors. The Browns rank 30th in the NFL in total defense, and last in the AFC, giving up 26.4 points per game and 400.4 yards per outing.
On the flip side, it’s difficult to move the ball against the Denver Broncos. They have been stingy, giving up just 15.8 PPG and an NFL-best 278.0 yards per game. They lead the league by allowing just 4.3 yards per play, too, so try and limit your DFS selections when facing the Broncos. The New York Jets lead the NFL in scoring defense, yielding just 13.8 points per contest, while giving up 280.2 YPG. While the Tennessee Titans have allowed 22.8 PPG, they’re giving up the third-least amount of yards at 283.5. The Broncos, Jets and Titans are the only three defenses giving up less than 304 yards per contest, so those are teams to limit your exposure against.
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FantasyAces.com salaries included below where applicable. (*** salaries subject to change ***)
Sam Bradford, QB, Philadelphia ($6,400 vs. NYG): Bradford found his stride last weekend, throwing for 333 yards with two touchdowns. He has 20.95 or more Fantasy points in each of the past two weeks after going for 16.8 or fewer in each of his first three. The New York Giants rank last in the NFL in pass defense, allowing 304.2 yards per game.
Julian Edelman, WR, New England ($5,850 at IND): The Colts secondary has been banged up all season, and the passing defense has been popped for 286.8 yards per game, including a league-high 22 pass plays of 20 or more yards. Edelman will be targeted frequently with the short and intermediate routes, going for eight to 10 catches and 85 or more yards.
Matt Forte, RB, Chicago ($5,800 at DET): The Bears travel east on Interstate 94 to face the hapless Lions, and the last winless team is in that predicament partially due to the fact they have allowed 126.6 yards per game on the ground, including a league-high eight touchdowns. Forte should have a field day, as the Lions are just middle of the road against the pass, too.
Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England ($5,800 at IND): After ‘Deflate-gate’, I expect the Patriots to come out and play angry in their first meeting against the Colts. Gronk was held out of the end zone for a second straight game last week in Dallas, so don’t expect a third goose egg. We’ve all heard Gronkowski is like a wide receiver, not a tight end. Well, that’s good, because the Colts haven’t allowed a touchdown to opposing tight ends all season. However, the Colts have been torched for 286.8 yards per game through the air, and a total of eight passing touchdowns. Gronk and the Pats will go off in the passing game.
Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Minnesota ($5,550 vs. KC): DFS owners have been picking on the Chiefs frequently this season, as Kansas City ranks last in the NFL by allowing 13 passing touchdowns through five games. They have also yielded 284.6 yards per game through the air, so Bridgewater is a solid mid-tier play.
Joe Flacco, QB, Baltimore ($6,000 at SF): Flacco faces a pass defense which was picked apart by Eli Manning and the Giants last weekend. The 49ers are 30th in the NFL in pass defense, allowing 21 pass plays or 20 or more yards, and they’re tied for a league-high with six pass plays of 40 or more yards allowed.
Jordan Matthews, WR, Philadelphia ($4,750 vs. NYG): Matthews has 50 or fewer yards in each of his past three games, which is the reason why his DFS salary has fallen. While his average production in recent weeks is bad news for those DFS owners, the salary reduction is great news in Week 6. J-Matthews faces a Giants pass defense which is last in the NFL, so look for the second-year receiver to go for at least 80 yards and a score, making him a nice mid-tier option.
Charcandrick West, RB, Kansas City ($4,400 at MIN): West will take over for the injured Jamaal Charles (knee), and he and Knile Davis ($4,300) will split the carries. West should see more touches, as he came on and was the featured back last week in the second half once Charles went down. He also has a lot more big-play ability, both on the ground and through the air. The Vikings have given up 125.5 yards per game on the ground, so expect the Chiefs to do some damage.
BARGAIN BIN VALUES AND CONTRARIAN PLAYS
Antonio Andrews, RB, Tennessee ($3,800 vs. MIA): Andrews doesn’t receive a ton of touches in a three-headed backfield, but he makes the most of his opportunities. He has scored a rushing touchdown in three of his first four games, and he has 12.6 or more Fantasy points in three games during the span. The Dolphins are the worst NFL team against the run, allowing 160.5 yards per game, so he could run for 40-50 yards. A trip to the end zone would easily earn his DFS salary.
Darren Fells, TE, Arizona ($3,400 at PIT): We picked on the Raiders against opposing TEs, but they’re off this week. So let’s pick on the Steelers instead. They are tied with Oakland, allowing six touchdown receptions to opposing tight ends this season. Fells will not post many receptions or a ton of yardage, but you can expect 25-35 yards and a touchdown, which is good return at this price level.
Minnesota Vikings DST ($2,800 vs. KC): The Vikings will be facing a Chiefs offense which ranks 18th in the NFL with 343.6 yards per game. That production came with Jamaal Charles in the lineup. Now that he is done, that’s one huge piece missing for Kansas City, and the Vikings should hold the Chiefs under 17 points in this one.