Greetings, Gamers! We have an excellent opportunity on Yahoo for Week 3, as they are running a $300,000 contest with a $15 entry fee and 22,715 entries. This flagship tournament generally does not fill more than 85-90% in the third week, which provides extra value for gamers. Let’s get into some NFL Yahoo Fantasy Football DFS Picks for Week 3 including Ezekiel Elliott and Lamar Jackson.
Don’t forget to check out this week’s NFL DFS On the Contrary show with Alex “Awesemo” Baker, Dave “Loughy” Loughran and special guest Davis Mattek on the Awesemo YouTube Channel
Yahoo Fantasy Football General Strategy
As with most sites, there are many viable strategies that can be successful in large-field tournaments and of course, we do need the same amount of favor from Lady Luck as we do elsewhere.
The key thing to remember is that this is a half-PPR site, meaning receptions are worth 0.5 points and the minimum salary is $10 with an average salary per player of $22. This week, Kyler Murray is at the top of the pricing list at $37. The full scoring parameters can be found here.
Please note: Yahoo now offers CSV upload as well as editing capabilities. The latter was something that was not available until recently. Be sure to become familiar with the steps involved in this process so you are savvy with how it all works when faced with a time crunch.
Awesemo NFL Rankings
One of the most useful features of the Awesemo.com premium content is the personal player rankings from Alex Baker, aka Awesemo, for all of the main sports. The players grade out separately for each DFS site with ratings for both “projected points” and “value” receiving an A through E report card-style grade.
As a sneak preview, for this article I will be sharing the grades Full Rankings (Premium Content)
If you have played football on Yahoo, or if you played Yahoo fantasy baseball, you know that the strategy is to look for the cheapest quarterback or pitcher that is tolerable so you can look for more secure points and upside elsewhere. In the recommendations below, I will be highlighting several discount options at the other positions so you can build a framework that will allow lineup construction for a top-shelf quarterback along with his favorite target and still have enough salary cap to run it back with the top option on the opposing team.
Kyler Murray – Arizona Cardinals vs. Detroit Lions – $37 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value B
Murray makes this section for a second straight week and he actually is the most expensive player on the slate after getting a bump from last week’s $33 price tag. The three rushing touchdowns are a nice reminder that the second year signal-caller has a solid floor. Equally important are the 40 and 38 pass attempts. While the youngster has not been great throwing the ball downfield, the short passing game is on point and this allows the Cardinals to extend their drives. The loss of Christian Kirk (groin) for this week should not impact Murray too dramatically. DeAndre Hopkins – $35 is expensive, but he already has 25 targets this season for 22/217/1 and though he is expensive, this is a marvelous pairing with his quarterback.
Josh Allen – Buffalo Bills vs. Los Angeles Rams – $36 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value B
Things are going to be very consolidated this week with both Dawson Knox (concussion) and Zack Moss (toe) out of action. Though it has been noted by many pundits, it is still surprising to me that Allen’s first two 300+ passing games came this season. In his first 28 games he topped 260 passing yards just once. However, the fantasy goodness was still plentiful because he also rushed for 1,141 yards and 17 touchdowns. Stefon Diggs – $26 and John Brown – $19 both have amazing upside and can be paired with their quarterback in tournaments as part of a synergistic strategy.
Cam Newton – New England Patriots vs. Las Vegas Raiders – $32 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value B
Newton makes for a nice foundation in our “cash” game lineups as it would appear that he is now the New England red zone running back. Through the first two games the former Panther has 11 red zone rushes for 37 yards and four touchdowns. This is one red zone carry off of the league lead and he also has gone 6 for 8 for 43 yards and a score. With James White (personal) out, even more of the high leverage touches will be going through Cam.
Awesemo’s Player Prop Stat Projections are predicting Cam Newton to have a few more passing yards than his Vegas totals suggest. There is some variation in the lines across sportsbooks, so use OddShopper to take advantage of this possible money-making player prop.
*Betting odds as of Saturday, Sept. 26 at 12:25 EST
We want to keep in mind that while running backs are very important, Yahoo fantasy uses half-PPR, which will not penalize running backs that are not as active in the passing game.
Alvin Kamara – New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay Packers – $36 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value D
Keep in mind that the “main” slate on Yahoo includes the Sunday Night Football game. This is often overlooked by gamers as most content is geared for the 1pm and 4pm ET games. With Michael Thomas out, Kamara should once again dominate the New Orleans targets along with a dozen or so rushing attempts. We know he can score from anywhere on the field and he will be on less than 20% of all rosters.
Miles Sanders – Philadelphia Eagles vs. Cincinnati Bengals – $21 Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value A
This is simply a mispricing situation. We saw that when healthy, Sanders is going to have a coveted “bell cow” role in the Eagles offense. The Bengals defense is mediocre at best and at this price point it is going to be hard for the second year man to fail is backers.
Dalvin Cook – Minnesota Vikings vs. Tennessee Titans – $29 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value B
In a bit of a twist, Minnesota is actually a +4.0 home underdog per OddsShopper by Awesemo. This means that Cook is essentially “game flow proof” as he will be called upon to run the ball if the Vikings are ahead and if they fall behind, he should see opportunities in the passing game.
More often than not, we should be able to find several nice options in the middle tier. The top-shelf Yahoo fantasy options are typically priced in the mid-$30 range. Often, they are best paired with their quarterbacks for tournament upside rather than risking downside as solo plays.
In addition to the players highlighted above with their quarterbacks, we can look to:
Marvin Jones – Detroit Lions at Arizona Cardinals – $14 Awesemo Grade: Points C, Value A
The return of Kenny Golladay – $21 should have a positive effect on Jones as it will give the defense someone else to worry about. This game could be high scoring and we can also consider TE T.J. Hockenson – $16 who had his monster breakout game last year in Arizona with 9 targets for 6/131/1 and the Cardinals are still exploitable by tight ents.
Tyler Lockett – Seattle Seahawks vs. Dallas Cowboys – $22 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value C
With the ridiculous efficiency of Russell Wilson – $36 52 of 63 82.5% for 610 yards, nine touchdowns and one interception it is going to be tantalizing to look to one of his pass catchers in tournaments. We can go with Lockett or teammate DK Metcalf – $24 in the highest projected scoring matchup.
Chris Herndon – New York Jets at Indianapolis Colts – $10 Awesemo Grade: Points C, Value A
Yes, he has been disappointing, but he comes in at the rock bottom price of just $10. While he only had one reception last week for five yards, he did have four targets and seven in Week 1. The Jets passing game is running out of healthy options and we can definitely use the salary savings elsewhere this week. Keep in mind both Jamison Crowder and Breshad Perriman are out and Le’Veon Bell is on the injured reserve.
Evan Engram – New York Giants vs. San Francisco 49ers – $14 Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value B
Much like the Jets, the other team in the Meadowlands is getting hammered by injuries. Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard, David Sills and Cody Core are all on the injured reserve. Golden Tate is now healthy, but that leaves him and Darius Slayton as the only familiar faces for second year signal-caller Daniel Jones. Enter Engram who is basically a giant receiver and one that has a good rapport with his quarterback.
There are several good matchups this week for Yahoo fantasy where we can get some bang for our buck.
Cleveland Browns vs. Washington Football Team – $11 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value A
Hopefully you followed last week’s recommendation of the Cardinals against this same Washington team as they had four sacks and two fumble recoveries. For just a dollar more than the minimum salary we can take a chance on this unit. The Browns defense is actually decent with all the draft capital they have allocated to that side of the ball the last few years. They are touchdown favorites against a green quarterback who will be making just his 12th career start.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Denver Broncos – $10 Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value A
While I generally do not look to play teams on the road, this is a different year with various fan limitation rules in effect. Tampa did have five sacks and four takeaways last week against Carolina, but they had one lonely little sack in Week 1 against the Saints. Drew Lock is out, Phillip Lindsay is doubtful and Jerry Jeudy questionable. Cortland Sutton is on the injured reserve in what is quickly shaping up to be a lost season for the Broncos. Jeff Driskell is drawing the start and this will be only the 14th game the third year field general has participated in.
As always, you can reach out to me in Awesemo.com Premium Slack or Twitter @EMacDFS if you have any questions.
Looking for more NFL DFS picks content? We’ve got loads of articles, data, cheatsheets and more on the Awesemo NFL home page, just click HERE.
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