WIN YOUR GPPS! Week 7 GPP Picks & Plays for FanDuel, DraftKings & Yahoo! NFL DFS Tournaments
Helping you win your weekly GPP contests on FanDuel, DraftKings & Yahoo! for the 2016-2017 NFL DFS Season.
There’s a ton of value to be had at running back this week, and pivoting off of it to non-DeMarco Murray options of any price point will be contrarian. With that in mind, running back is well represented this week among the GPP pivots. A chalk value option at tight end as well as Gronk at the top of the heap led to a different value tight end standing out as a nifty swerve. A semi-chalky quarterback gets the nod, but sticker shock should drive his ownership rate below what it should be in GPPs. Finally, a big-play receiver who played well in his first week with a new-old starting quarterback is a repeat visitor to this article this week.
Spencer Ware – RB – Chiefs – $5,800 – Vs Saints
No team has surrendered more DraftKings points per game to running backs than Ware’s opponent this week. That factor alone will prevent Ware from carrying a tiny ownership rate. That said, the return of Jamaal Charles and his increasing role in the offense will likely depress his ownership a few ticks. Charles made his return in Week 4 prior to the team’s bye week, and he played just 10 of 75 offensive snaps (13%), according to Pro-Football-Reference (PFR). Last week, Week 6, he played 15 of 64 offensive snaps (23%). Ware played 40 offensive snaps (62%), and has plenty of wiggle room to lose snaps and still touch the ball enough to post a monster score against the porous run defense of the Saints. He’s following up a surprising breakout last year with an even more impressive 2016. Ware is averaging 83.0 rushing yards per game and 46.2 yards receiving per game on 2.6 grabs. He’s a big bruiser, but he’s no 3-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust back as he’s averaging a whopping 5.3 yards per carry (ypc). The Saints have been gutted for 117.8 yards rushing per game, and they’ve ceded a league-high 11 rushing touchdowns. The game has a super-appealing over/under total of 50 points, per Pinnacle Sports, and with the Chiefs favored by six, game script should play in Ware’s favor.
Julius Thomas – TE – Jaguars – $3,900 – Vs Raiders
Thomas’ health will need to be monitored entering the weekend. He was a limited participant in practice on Thursday, but RotoWorld notes he’s likely to play. Thomas is no stranger to injuries, and he’s already missed a game this year, but last week he was healthy enough to play 83% of Jacksonville’s offensive snaps. Thus far this year, he’s fallen behind not only Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns in the pecking order but also Marquise Lee. The athletic tight end is fifth on the team in targets and receptions and fourth in receiving yards. The point-chasing lemmings are sure to be off of his scent, and that makes him appealing in a great matchup. The Raiders have allowed the eighth most DraftKings fantasy points per game to tight ends, and Football Outsiders (FO) ranks them 26th defending the position. The Raiders struggled mightily with tight ends last year, too, so this isn’t merely a slow start to 2016. This game has an over/under total of 47 points and a spread of just 1.5 points, so there’s shootout potential. Many gamers who invest in this contest will load up on the receivers. Zig when other gamer zag.
Tom Brady – QB – Patriots – $9,100 – @ Steelers
Brady has clowned the NFL representatives of the state of Ohio the last two weeks torching the Bengals for 376 yards passing and three scores last week and the Browns for 406 yards passing and three scores the week before. He’s not going to be low owned, but as the second most expensive player this week (trails only Julio Jones at $9,100) and lots of enticing options at quarterback, his ownership rate shouldn’t be uber chalky. Brady stacks are among my favorites this week. I love Gronkowski, like Edelman and have another potential stack partner in mind, too (foreshadowing!). Tom Terrific would have almost certainly garnered a higher ownership percentage if Ben Roethlisberger was healthy. Because the Patriots are 7.5-point favorites, there is some blowout potential that will turn some gamers away. Remember, though, risk is to be embraced in GPPs if the potential payoff is great enough, and it is with Brady and the high-octane Patriots offense. Brady has been a stud since his return — as the previously cited stats indicate — and the Steelers rank 21st in pass defense, per FO. As the line and over/under total indicate, the Patriots are projected to hang a big number on the Steelers, and if that happens, Brady will almost certainly have a huge hand in doing so.
James White – RB – Patriots – $6,100 – @ Steelers
Mike Gillislee and Jacquizz Rodgers will — rightfully — be the popular value picks at running back. Insert White as a slightly more expensive pivot. In two games played with Brady this year, the pass-catching back has caught 12 of 15 targets for 110 yards receiving and a pair of touchdowns while adding 45 yards on the ground. He’s also surpassed LeGarrette Blount in the pecking order for playing time. In Week 5, White played 38 of 80 offensive snaps (48%) compared to Blount’s 31 snaps (39%). Last week, the disparity grew with White playing 39 of 64 offensive snaps (61%) compared to Blount’s 25 (39%). The Patriots are no longer running a ball-control offense, and that’s done wonders for White’s outlook and value. The Steelers have been rather giving to running backs in the passing game this year. They’ve allowed the fourth most receptions (37) and third most receiving yards (386) to the position. And for those of you with short memories, they were embarrassed by Darren Sproles (6-128-1 on six targets). I’m not saying White will duplicate Sproles’ line, but you better believe Bill Belichick has seen the film of that butt whooping.
Yahoo! (Y!) and FantasyAces (FA)
(Y!) Devonta Freeman – RB – Falcons – $35 – Vs Chargers
The scoring format between Yahoo! and FanDuel is similar. With that in mind, the Chargers have allowed the third most FanDuel points per game to running backs this year. They’ve yielded the fifth fewest rushing yards per game (83.7) at a paltry 3.8 ypc to opponents, but they’ve coughed up eight rushing scores (seven to running backs), and they’ve allowed the most receptions (54) and second most receiving yards (416) to the position. Wait a second, if they’re getting beaten through the air by backs (FO ranks them 20th defending running backs in the passing game as well), isn’t Tevin Coleman the back to own? He’s not a bad play, but Freeman has just one fewer target (23 vs 22) and reception (17 vs 18) than the second-year back. The gap in receiving yards is sizable with Coleman racking up 320 yards and Freeman racking up 127, but 21.2 yards receiving on 2.8 receptions per game is nothing to sneeze at, and Freeman is the much better runner. Freeman’s rushed for 450 yards at 5.0 ypc and Coleman’s responsible for only 170 at 3.3 ypc. The upside is higher for Freeman, and ceiling is the name of the game in GPPs.
(FA) Torrey Smith – WR – 49ers – $3,950 – Vs Buccaneers
Colin Kaepernick struggled in his first start of the year completing only 13 of 29 passes for 187 yards and a touchdown. That touchdown toss was to Smith, though, and the former Raven was tied with Quinton Patton and Jeremy Kerley for the team lead in targets with seven. Smith was the most productive receiver for the 49ers and reeled in three grabs for 76 yards and the aforementioned score. The touchdown came in the first half, well before garbage time. Last year, Smith’s to most productive games were with Kaepernick starting, and they were strong showings (6-120-1 and 3-96-1). As is the case with Yahoo!, FantasyAces’ scoring format is similar to FanDuel’s, and the Buccaneers have allowed the ninth most FanDuel points per game to receivers this year. The matchup is good for the boom-or-bust receiver. At under $4,000, he offers valuable salary relief paired with big-play upside. Sign me up for that.