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NFL Week 9 Yahoo! Million Dollar Baller Picks Using Awesemo’s Premium Rankings (FREE)

Eric MacPherson

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Yahoo fantasy football is running a $1,000,000 contest with a $20 entry fee and 40,000 entries for Week 9 of the NFL season, which means they are adding $200,000 to the prize pool. Let’s get into some Yahoo Daily Fantasy Picks for NFL lineups, including Lamar Jackson, Austin Ekeler and more.

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Week 9 NFL Yahoo Daily Fantasy Strategy & Picks

The critical thing to remember is that Yahoo is a half-PPR site, and the minimum salary is $10, with an average salary per player of $22. This week, Josh Allen is at the top of the salary list at $40. The complete scoring parameters can be found here.

One of the most valuable features of the Awesemo.com premium content is the personal player rankings from Alex Baker, 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. This week, as a special treat, Awesemo is also adding in the “Roster%,” which is the projected percentage a player will be used in the large-field tournaments.

Quarterback

If you have played daily fantasy football on Yahoo or 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.

Lamar Jackson: Baltimore Ravens vs. Minnesota Vikings – $36 | Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value A, Roster% 24.7%

While the Vikings have been tough to target through the air with the 3rd best passing DVOA, they have been in the bottom-third of the league against the run. Fortunately the Lamar Jackson is the 12th leading rusher on the season with 68.6 yards per game in addition to his quarterback duties. Though he has not run for a score since Week 2, the threat is still there anytime the Ravens are inside the 20 yard line. Only once has Jackson thrown for multiple touchdowns this season, however that should not dissuade anyone from rolling him out as a core signal-caller in all formats Sunday. Keep in mind that Jackson is also averaging a career high 277.1 passing yards per game which is just outside the top ten in the pass happy league.

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Josh Allen: Buffalo Bills at Jacksonville Jaguars – $40 | Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value A, Roster% 26.5%

Last Sunday the Jaguars lost in Seattle against a mediocre offense with backups starting at quarterback and running back. Now they are going against Josh Allen who is in the MVP conversation this season. Currently Allen is eighth in the league with 281.7 passing yards per game while adding another 38.4 on the ground. Allen has six straight multi-passing touchdown performances and he has run for a score in half of those occurrences. Buffalo is a pass first, second and often times third type of an offense, so even if this becomes a lopsided affair, Allen will have had a hand in most of the scoring to that point.

Running Back

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.

Austin Ekeler: Los Angeles Chargers at Philadelphia Eagles – $30 | Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value B, Roster% 26.6%

Philadelphia is in the bottom-third of the league against the run and while Austin Ekeler generally accrues his fantasy production as a receiver, he has 48+ rushing yards in five of six games this season along with four rushing touchdowns in his last four tilts. On the season the Eagles have allowed eight different running backs with 48+ rushing yards in eight games while allowing nine total touchdowns to the position.

Alvin Kamara: New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons – $33 | Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value C, Roster% 24.0%

Jameis Winston (knee) is out for the season so journeyman Trevor Siemian ($25) will be under center for the Saints. That actually bodes well for Alvin Kamara since we know that when Taysom Hill is the quarterback, Kamara only sees a fraction of his usual targets. Siemian was a starter for two seasons in Denver where he was throwing to C.J. Anderson, Devontae Booker and James Charles out of the backfield. New Orleans is coming off an upset win and are favored by a touchdown at home against the Falcons. This is a very winnable matchup and we can expect coach Sean Payton to continue to have Kamara involved heavily in all facets of the game plan.

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Devontae Booker: New York Giants vs. Las Vegas Raiders – $15 | Awesemo Grade: Points C, Value B, Roster% 42.6%

It never feels good riding with Devontae Booker, however, the salary is appealing and The Masses are landing on him as a discount dandy which provides some downside protection in “H2H” games and smaller field tournaments. On the positive side of the ledger, he does have touchdowns in two of his last four games and he has topped 13+ Yahoo Fantasy points in three of them. Las Vegas is only favored by a field goal and there has been a lot of turmoil and off-field distractions around the franchise for the last three weeks. All Booker needs is 80 combined yards and a score and he pays off his tag this week.

Wide Receiver

The top-shelf Yahoo fantasy options are typically priced in the low-to-mid-$30 range. Often, they are best paired with their quarterbacks for tournament upside rather than risking downside as solo plays.

Stefon Diggs: Buffalo Bills at Jacksonville Jaguars – $27 | Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value B, Roster% 20.7%

This week Cole Beasley ($17) has been dealing with injured ribs and he was only able to get in one limited practice on Friday. Last year Stefon Diggs had a career season leading the league in targets, receptions and yards. This year he still has fringe top-10 marks in each category and he has 100+ yards or a touchdown in each of his  last three games. Take advantage of his falling salary and consider pairing him with his quarterback, regardless of Beasley’s status.

Brandin Cooks: Houston Texans at Miami Dolphins | Awesemo Grade: Points B, ValueB, Roster% 12.5%

Something that is very key to remember is that fantasy production on a bad team or when a team is trailing, counts just as much as when it is created by the best teams in the league. Tyrod Taylor will be starting on Sunday after missing the bulk of the season with a hamstring injury. This is a major upgrade for Brandin Cooks who has being doing his best to prop up the overmatched Davis Mills. The Dolphins have a bottom-five passing DVOA and even though they are favored by nearly a touchdown, this game is not going to be a walk in the park for the home team.

Jakobi Meyers: New England Patriots at Carolina Panthers – $13 | Awesemo Grade: Points B, Value B, Roster% 3.9%

The Patriots have been trying to get Jakobi Meyers his first career receiving touchdown and it is going to happen at some point. In the meantime, he has led the team in targets in all but one game this season and he has 27 more than Nelson Agholor who is the next closest on the team. While there is not a lot of upside, for his salary, he is once again an intriguing punt option.

Tight Ends

Darren Waller: Las Vegas Raiders at New York Giants  | Awesemo Grade: Points A, Value B, Roster% 27.0%

Henry Ruggs III was released earlier this week by the Raiders. Willie Snead IV was also given his walking papers by request. That means Darren Waller is by far the best receiver on Las Vegas. While Hunter Renfrow, Bryan Edwards and Zay Jones will be on the field a fair amount, we know that quarterback Derek Carr only has eyes for Waller. Renfrow is second on the team with 51 targets and in one fewer game, Waller leads the squad with 53 targets. While Foster Moreau filled in nicely for Waller last week, he only has six targets in games where they have both been healthy.

Dan Arnold: Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Buffalo Bills – $13 | Awesemo Grade: Points D, Value C, Roster% 9.6%

This is a tricky matchup, but we did see Dan Arnold with a whopping 10 targets last week. In his last three appearances he is averaging a tick shy of eight targets per game and for his low salary, he is worthy of consideration on teams that are not build around Waller on Sunday.

Defense/Special Teams

This week, there is one top-tier unit and a familiar bargain option.

San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals – $10 | Awesemo Grade: Points C, Value C, Roster% 7.5%

Kyler Murray (ankle) is clearly not at full health and on the season he has been sacked at least two times in all but one game. Additionally he has three interceptions in his last two outings and seven total on the year. The ankle injury has the team looking to protect him at all costs and that means he is unlikely to run nearly as often as he has in the past. While he can still throw the ball away, taking away this dynamic dimension does help San Francisco’s cause. This unit is at the Yahoo minimum salary of $10 which mitigates a lot of the downside risk.

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Cleveland Browns – $13 | Awesemo Grade: Points D, Value D, Roster% 5.8%

Sunday will be the Bengals first home game in three weeks. In their last two matchups they they got to Lamar Jackson for five sacks in Baltimore and they had a pair of sacks, two interceptions and a fumble against the Jets on Halloween. Baker Mayfield is banged up and Kareem Hunt is out with an injury. Odell Beckham Jr worked out a deal to obtain his release and while he had been providing marginal contributions, he was leading the team in targets. The pucker factor will be high with this one, but there is a solid shot at double digit fantasy points with a little luck.


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View our FanDuel DFS NFL rankings and our DraftKings NFL DFS rankings. If you’re interested in other DFS NFL stats for multiple game slates, head over to DFS NFL projected ownership, Awesemo's NFL Data Central, daily fantasy football rankings, and DFS NFL stacking. Take a look at our NFL line-ups, NFL depth chart list and inactive player list. We also have NFL DFS single-game projections and NFL DFS single-game ownership projections.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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