Week 9 Daily Fantasy Football Advice: Piecing Together the Optimal Lineup
Week nine could pick up a bit in daily fantasy football, as we have fewer bye weeks and more teams in play. For the most part, last week was a real bummer, as you certainly needed Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers or Derek Carr to thrive in DFS NFL contests, and you probably needed Amari Cooper, as well.
A lot of duds popped up last week, with some guys even getting hurt and really sinking some of our best lineups. Spencer Ware and T.Y. Hilton were both insanely highly owned last week, so a ton of people felt our pain.
That aside, week nine promises to be better, as the main slate at DraftKings offers a few more options and actually a lot better value than we saw a week ago.
Let’s see what we can come up with for week nine, as we try to piece together the right sleepers with the right studs to form the ideal daily fantasy football optimal lineup:
QB: Dak Prescott – Cowboys ($6.1k)
Prescott isn’t Drew Brees or Aaron Rodgers, but at this price, he doesn’t really have to be. As much fun as it’d be to own those guys, the reality is Prescott gets to face a Browns defense that ranks 29th against quarterbacks on the year.
More than that, Dallas has basically thrown their support behind the rookie dual threat, who also happens to be a strong DFS performer. In fact, he has 28 and 20 fantasy points in each of his last two outings and is riding a nice six-game streak of 18+ fantasy points.
Even if he for some reason doesn’t blow the hinges off in Cleveland this week, he’s at least stable for a fair price.
RB: Latavius Murray – Raiders ($4k)
I’m not suggesting Murray is either elite or reliable, but anytime you can get a talented starting running back at this low of a price, you need to stop and consider your options.
The reality is Murray doesn’t have an awesome role on a team that prefers to pass, but this week he’s at home in a massive showdown with the Broncos. As elite as Denver’s defense can be, stopping the run hasn’t been their forte in 2016, as they’re just the 22nd best defense against running backs over the past four weeks.
I’m not looking at Murray as a guy who will light the Broncos up, but considering he’s safely reached 12 and 20 fantasy points the past two weeks, this simply is value we can’t afford to bypass.
RB: Todd Gurley – Rams ($5.8k)
Ezekiel Elliott is very tempting, but he’s the most expensive rusher on this week’s main slate and everyone will be all over him. Why pay up for him when we can get a talent such as Gurley for such a discounted price?
There is no denying Gurley hasn’t been the elite back we want him to be, nor is his matchup with the Panthers ideal, but he can bust a play anytime and has churned out 13+ fantasy points in an impressive five straight contests.
Even if the Rams get housed, Gurley will still get 15+ touches and should be a threat to score. That puts him in line to return serious value this week.
WR: Dontrelle Inman – Chargers ($3.1k)
Inman isn’t exactly an elite talent and I’m not enamored with a matchup against a Titans defense that ranks 13th against wide receivers this year, but we frankly may not have a choice.
San Diego is beyond banged up right now, with both Tyrell Williams and Travis Benjamin dealing with knee injuries. Inman is dirt cheap and has shown well lately (20 total fantasy points over the last two games) and could be in for a huge role if one or both end up sitting out in week nine.
All of that forces us to tentatively buy into Inman.
WR: Jarvis Landry – Dolphins ($7.1k)
Miami has been running the ball extremely well the past two games, but week nine brings a brutal matchup with a stout Jets front seven. Suffice to say, it’s likely Miami’s passing game steps up this week, when they get a Jets defense that ranks 31st against WRs in 2016.
In comes Landry, who still found a way to post 14+ fantasy point outings over his last two games, despite the Dolphins running the ball like crazy. In a game where he’ll be featured more and the matchup is sublime, Landry feels like one of the top WRs to target in daily fantasy football.
WR: Antonio Brown – Steelers ($8.9k)
If the whispers about Ben Roethlisberger are remotely true, we need to act fast on Antonio Brown, who is actually very cheap compared to his earlier prices this season.
He’s under $9k this week, coming off a strong 21.9 fantasy point performance sans Big Ben and gets a Ravens pass defense that ranks just 30th against wide receivers.
In a divisional clash that the Steelers badly need to win, we could see him going off.
TE: Kyle Rudolph – Vikings ($4k)
Minnesota’s offense is in shambles after two straight losses, but three things I think we can safely lean on: the Vikings have to pass, the Lions can’t defend and Rudolph is part of the solution.
Rudy has seen at least 6+ targets come his way in all but one game this year and in week nine gets a cakewalk matchup with a Lions defense that currently ranks dead last at covering tight ends. Where do I sign?
FLEX: Dez Bryant – Cowboys ($7.4k)
We don’t have to stack Dez Bryant with our quarterback (Prescott), but judging off his stat line last week (4-113-1 off of 14 targets) we should certainly feel giddy about the potential here.
Bryant could be locking horns with Joe Haden, but Cleveland has been awful defensively all year. Provided Bryant is a full go (he was limited in practice on Wednesday), he could wreck the Browns’ 29th ranked pass defense (vs. WRs).
DEF: Kansas City Chiefs ($3.4k)
The Chiefs are chalky for sure, as they get Blake Bortles and an awful Jaguars offense at home this week. It would take a miracle to turn Jacksonville around at this point and it’s very difficult to see them going into Kansas City and competing – much less torching one of the better defenses in the league.
Kansas City has been elite and also extremely reliable, with three straight 10+ fantasy point outings and 10+ fantasy points in four of their last five games. It would be an utter shock to have them be a failure in week nine.
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