Week 3 Daily Fantasy Football: Top Value Buys at DraftKings
There were some crazy value picks in daily fantasy football last week. If you jumped on guys like Travis Benjamin, DeAngelo Williams, Larry Fitzgerald and even Johnny Manziel, you probably had yourself a mighty fine day.
Getting one or several sleepers like that allowed you to build out the rest of your roster with moderate to elite players. Adding the likes of Julio Jones, Antonio Brown and/or Odell Beckham Jr. could have been a reality, and if so, you probably won big.
Each week brings more potential value buys at daily fantasy sites like DraftKings, and we’re here to point them out if you need the help.
Last week we definitely hit on a few, as Manziel and the Arizona Cardinals defense were two picks of ours that worked out. We got burned by Jimmy Graham and several others, but with week two being an off the wall kind of crazy, we’re hoping we can all just forget it.
Let’s move forward to week three with our favorite value plays at DraftKings:
Note: To keep our value picks in check, we won’t be picking anyone over $7k at any position.
Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers ($6.8k)
There are few values better than Cam Newton, who has faced two solid defenses to start the year, yet has over 41 total fantasy points to show for it. The big thing for Newton is that he’s running the ball a ton (24 runs), which opens up his dual threat upside a huge amount. He doesn’t have many weapons, but this week he’s got the weak Saints defense at home. At just $6.8k and given how frugal DK is with quarterback points, he’s quite possible the best play at the position.
Carson Palmer, QB, Arizona Cardinals ($6.6k)
Just $200 less is a better pocket passer and a more prolific quarterback thus far in 2015, in Carson Palmer. Palmer has lit up the Saints and Bears the first two weeks and now he’s back at home against Niners defense that just gave up 43 points to the Steelers. Yikes. There is always the slim chance this is a defensive battle and Palmer is just OK, but the upside is clear for all to see.
Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets ($5k)
Ivory is banged up and wasn’t a major factor in week two, but THE PRICE, man. He’s a feature back who will have a shot at easy touchdowns and if he’s even close to 100% he’ll see around 20 touches in any given week. This week he gets an Eagles squad that not only seems totally lost, but is also on the road and will probably turn the ball over a bit. That’s more chances at easy scores for a guy you’re only paying $5k for.
Jonathan Stewart, RB, Carolina Panthers ($4.8k)
Right there with Ivory is J-Stew, who has yet to produce at a high level yet, but definitely has a role not to be forgotten about. It’s true he hasn’t scored yet and hasn’t exploded to any degree, but Stewart has had two difficult matchups to start the year, yet still has at least 18 total touches in each of his first two games. This week he’s at home against the Saints, who don’t boast a very strong run defense.
Danny Woodhead, RB, San Diego Chargers ($4.4k)
Role is huge in fantasy football and at DraftKings so is getting catches (1 point per reception). Woodhead is golden in both regards, as he can by a dynamite player near the red-zone and is going to get his fair share of catches, regardless. Even with rookie rusher Melvin Gordon getting way more carries in week two, Woodhead still offered value as a receiver (6 receptions, 68 yards).
It’s true that he’s dependent on getting balls thrown his way if he’s not scoring, but his ability to do either make him a tremendous value based off of this super low price tag. Also, he’s going up against a Vikings defense that got shredded on the ground in week one.
Dion Lewis, RB, New England Patriots ($4.2k)
Much like Woodhead, Lewis is a PPR fiend who also will see some carries. LeGarrette Blount’s return did nothing to limit his fantasy upside last week, as Lewis still touched the ball 13 times and even scored. He has 100+ total yards in each of his first two contests and is now back at home this week against the Jaguars. Jax usually stifles the run pretty well, which is why Blount is less of a concern. Look for Lewis to be as active as ever as a dump-off option.
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts ($6.7k)
Hilton is going to bust out in week three. Before the season started everyone was all about the Colts, and rightfully so. These early struggles will quickly fade in a nice matchup with the Tennessee Titans. I don’t care if the Colts lose, though. It’s all about Hilton’s speed against the Titans still shaky pass defense. Remember when Travis Benjamin burned them twice for long scores last week? Yeah. Hilton is a WR1 at a WR2 price this week. Go get’em.
Brandon Marshall, WR, New York Jets ($6.2k)
Similar deal here, as Marshall has proven to be a stud even with elite cover men in Joe Haden and Vontae Davis trying to stop him through the first two weeks. Now he’s at home against an Eagles defense that had major trouble with Julio Jones in week one and also gave up production to Terrance Williams in week two. Eric Decker (knee) could even be out, which could make Marshall one of the best value plays of the week.
Jeremy Maclin, WR, Kansas City Chiefs ($6k)
Maclin has been very quiet through the first two weeks, but if you ask me that has more to do with Travis Kelce going off in week one and Aqib Talib shutting him down in week two. Alex Smith will always be a mild concern, but Maclin is simply too explosive to stay grounded forever. In week three he draws a Packers defense that has given up some production to a banged up Alshon Jeffery and also got burned by Doug Baldwin last week. With them trying to contain Jamaal Charles, it’s only natural for them to lose Maclin a few times in coverage.
Allen Hurns, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars ($3.7k)
Now we’re getting really sneaky, as Hurns has had a solid role with the Jags to start the year but has yet to break out. That job went to Allen Robinson last week and in week three I think things shift the other way. The Patriots are really good at taking away the opposition’s top weapon, so I see them neutralizing Robinson a bit. That could leave the door open to Hurns busting out in week three. At this price, he’s certainly worth a shot.
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs ($5k)
This is all about value, as Rob Gronkowski is clearly the top tight end option. However, Kelce was a total beast in week one (two scores) and his “down” game last week still almost got daily fantasy football gamers 10 fantasy points. That’s not bad for being “take out” of the game. Green Bay did a terrific job on Jimmy Graham last week, but they also allowed Martellus Bennett to score in week one. I think Kelce is a potential stud tight end and as you can see, his price isn’t very taxing.
Coby Fleener, TE, Indianapolis Colts ($3k)
While Kelce could be fun, it may be best to go big or go very, very small at tight end this week. In other words, either go all in on Gronk or find a cheap TE you like. Fleener is a good one if you decide to drop down to a value option, as he’s just $3k and could be in for a ton of targets in week three. Not only have the Colts publicly stated they need to get their tight ends more involved, but regular starter Dwayne Allen is probably out this week. That could mean fireworks for Fleener against a shaky Titans defense.
Buffalo Bills DEF ($3k)
Defenses can go either way, but when you can get a strong Rex Ryan defense at value, you pull the trigger. They’re still just $400 less than the top defense in daily fantasy football this week, but they’re a solid bet. The team they’re facing, the Dolphins, really only got going offensively last week and can’t run the ball right now. The Bills should also be looking to take some anger out after losing to Tom Brady and the Patriots in week two.
Cleveland Browns DEF ($2.9k)
Cleveland is in play here, and you can probably toss the team they’re facing (Raiders) into the mix, too. Both defenses have vulnerabilities and could get beat, but they’re fairly cheap and have some upside to them. Of course, the Browns are just $100 cheaper than the safer Buffalo Bills, so you could be playing with fire here.
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