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From the Slot – Week Five

Nolan Kelly



NFL DFS ownership rankings for the all slates on Draftkings & FanDuel from the world's best daily fantasy football player

Well, I was in Las Vegas last weekend, the most ironic spot in the world for a DFS player. How is no DFS in Nevada still a thing? On the plus side, I ran into Floyd Mayweather, took a pic and got yelled at by him and his entourage. So, not all bad.

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Let’s get into last week:

What went right?

Zach Ertz had himself a nice 10 catch, 122 yard game (no TDs, see below), and the Bears DST mustered four sacks and three INTs in their beat down of the once vaunted Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

What went wrong?

Antonio Callaway continued to drop passes at a Dez Bryant level rate. He’s made so many mistakes this year, that in spite of his oozing talent, it’s time to take a wait and see approach.

Milly Maker Winning lineup analysis

Nickelback4Lyfe (gross) took home the Milly last week, without stacking too much. They had Trubisky-Gabriel and Cook-Oak DST mini-stacks and that’s it. As usual, paying up for bell-cow backs paid off, and a trend that we’ve seen for a while now popped up, pairing heavy chalk with super-low owned contrarian plays.

Let’s get into this week:

The plays

Christian McCaffery: DraftKings: Grade: A, Value: A; FanDuel: Grade: A, Value: A

This price is just too cheap. Through three weeks, McCaffery had the highest running back snap share in the NFL. In addition to his usual pass catching duties, he’s also averaging 15 carriers per game. With Greg Olsen out and Devin Funchess shadowed by Janoris Jenkins, the offence is going to have to run through Cam and McCaffery. I am all in this week. 100% ownership. Hopefully Cam doesn’t snag all the goal line opportunities – but even if he does, McCaffery’s floor is still as high as anyone’s. Awesemo has him projected at 26% ownership.

JuJu Smith Shuster: DraftKings: Grade: A, Value: B; FanDuel: Grade: A, Value: B

JuJu Smith-Schuster is running 86% of his snaps out of the slot this year and gets to line-up in the slot against the Falcons’ Brian Poole, who has allowed 17 receptions on 21 targets and three touchdowns this season. JuJu is also due for some positive TD regression (see below), with only one score so far this season. Obviously his counterpart Antonio Brown makes for a nice play, but at $9100 he isn’t cheap. Rostering both with Big Ben isn’t the worst decision in the world, you’ll just have to be contrarian elsewhere. With Vance MacDonald’s ownership at 19%, fading him is probably the best way to get around chalky Steelers stacks.

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Contrarian stack

The Packers and Lions game total is up to 52.5, five points less than the uber-chalk Falcons-Steelers game. If newly questionable Marvin Jones Jr. is out, Detroit suddenly has a very concentrated passing attack with the majority of balls headed towards Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay, while on the other side, you can mix and match with Jimmy Graham, Ty Montgomery, Davante Adams and rookie, bare min priced, Marqueze Valdes-Scantling. Both Aaron Jones and Kerryon My Wayward Son Johnson are also viable.

On the flip side, Marvin Jones Jr. was shaping up as the uber-chalk at just $4700 on DK. His questionable tag may reduce ownership and it’s more than likely that he’ll be good to go. He was a late addition in week three and played 90% of snaps.

The Fade

Derrick Henry: DraftKings: Grade: E, Value: E; FanDuel: Grade: E, Value: D

It feels like Henry is getting a little buzz this week, with pundits assuming he’ll get the bulk of work if the Titans 5.5 point favorite game-script goes according to plan. But Henry is still in a time share with Dion Lewis – one that has produced even splits even when the Titans are leading. Add that to Henry’s putrid receiving numbers (he has three receptions for 12 yards this year) and higher than expected ownership and you’re looking at a touchdown dependent, time-share back in a mediocre offence. That’s full fade territory for me.

Update: Awesemo has him at only 2.5% ownership, which was less than what I was expecting. At that price, he’s not the worst GPP flier. There’s no doubt he has that long play, TD upside. Still, I’ll go elsewhere.

The pivots

If Geronimo Allison is ruled out in addition to Randall Cobb, expect Ty Montgomery (EE, EE) to line-up in the slot often. Awesemo doesn’t have him ranked highly, but I’m guessing that would change if Allison is out. When Cobb missed week three last year, Montgomery frequently lined up in the slot and caught 8 balls on 12 targets – now, those eight balls produced a head-scratching 15 yards, but that’s still a ridiculous target share. Primary Lions slot corner Jamal Agnew has allowed a 116.7 NFL passer rating in coverage this year. Most of these players, including the two quarterbacks, are projected for 3-8% ownership.

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TD regression

According to Mike Clay from ESPN, Zach Ertz has the largest negative expected TD for differential in the NFL, at -2.4. JuJu and Julio are tied for second at -2.1. Julio’s red zone difficulties are well documented, but it’s safe to assume some TD regression from all of these players in the near future.

On the flip side, Calvin Ridley (4.4) and Melvin Gordon (2.1) are the most likely to come back down to earth.

Comments? Questions? Hit me up on twitter @nolan__kelly.

I've been obsessed with fantasy sports since as long as I can remember. Back in 1993, while seated in the last row of Mr. MacMillan's math class, I'm fairly certain a few buddies of mine and I invented daily fantasy sports -- popping down our fivers and using nothing more than a newspaper box score, we'd make our NHL player picks for the night's action. Twenty years later I started out playing DFS on DraftStreet, when three-max tourneys with 490 people were a big deal, and I've been hooked ever since. More than anything, I'm interested in using my technical writing skills to articulate and clarify our content in order to help you become a better fantasy sports players player. Armed with Awesemo's grades and the projections from our experts, we're here to help you take the next step. You can contact me by emailing [email protected].

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