There are now just three weeks left to the regular season, and some things are going to start to change, particularly the schedule. We have our first Saturday game of the season this weekend, and it will not be included in the main slate. Next week, Christmas falls on a Sunday, so most of the games get played on Saturday. And in Week 17, there is no Thursday or Monday night games at all, so everything will happen on Sunday. Keeping track of the schedule and slate selection will become integral to your DFS success. As always, here are some value plays to keep you on that path…
Colin Kaepernick at Falcons, $6,100
Call me a truther, but I’m not getting off the Kaepernick train just yet. Coming off of two poor performances in a row, the athletic signal caller now gets to face an Atlanta team giving up the most fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks. And unlike the Jets, who have a talented run defense, the Falcons ranked 27th in Football Outsiders rush DVOA heading into Week 14, meaning Kap can beat them with his legs.
Furthermore, Atlanta opened up as 13-point favorites against San Francisco. That means the 49ers probably will not be able to do as many designed runs to running backs like they did for long stretches of the game against New York. The game-script is looking like it will force a ton of usage from Kaepernick and that should yield some impressive fantasy production.
Robert Griffin at Bills, $5,000
It was an awful return for Griffin, who started his first game last week since Week 1. That said, he’s 5K, which is extraordinarily cheap at the position, and he salvaged his fantasy day with a rushing touchdown last weekend. Being fantasy viable while doing nothing as a passer is precisely why Griffin makes for a great value this weekend. Buffalo has allowed two touchdown passes in three of their last five games, as well as two rushing touchdowns in that time frame to quarterbacks. This is a defense Griffin can beat and he doesn’t have to do much to pay off this price tag.
Paul Perkins vs. Lions, $4,200
Perkins saw his usage really ramp up against the Cowboys, as he touched the ball 16 times. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he only totaled 45 yards with those touches. Fortunately, Rashad Jennings was equally terrible with his 15 carries, also going for 45 yards. Detroit is much worse against the run, ranking 25th in rush DVOA heading into Week 14. If he can see a similar workload the results should be much better.
Jerick McKinnon vs. Colts, $4,000
McKinnon is another running back who is seeing an increased workload. He saw 20 touches against the Jags in a game Minnesota won fairly easily. The Vikings are four-point favorites against Indy and should be able to keep this game close. Furthermore, the Colts are basically the nut matchup for running backs this season. They ranked 31st in rush DVOA and 32nd in DVOA against running backs in the passing game heading into Week 14, and have been gashed by the position all year. This price is way too cheap for the projected workload and matchup.
Tyrell Williams vs. Raiders, $4,400
I’m just going to keep writing up Williams until Fantasy Aces decides to bump up his price. He had a four-game touchdown streak brought to an end on Sunday, but has still been producing at a WR1 clip this year in games where he hasn’t faced the Broncos. This game opened with a 51-point Vegas total and there should be plenty of scoring between these two division rivals. For a WR37 price tag, this is an absolute no-brainer.
Taylor Gabriel vs. 49ers, $4,350
Gabriel is one of the most unexpected producers of the season, but he continues to do produce. He has scored at least 14 points on Fantasy Aces in five of his last six games and should continue to be a relative focal point of the offense with Mohamed Sanu out. Considering how easy of an opponent they have, I would not expect the Falcons to rush Sanu back. Gabriel should continue to see quality looks in this offense, particularly down the field. San Francisco is top-five in fantasy points allowed to opposing wide receivers.
Antonio Gates vs. Raiders, $3,900
Gates saw nine targets last weekend and produced 61 yards on them. Most importantly, he is just two touchdowns shy of tying Tony Gonzalez for the all-time touchdown record at tight end, and three of owning the record on his own. With just three games remaining and the season already over, I’m expecting Philip Rivers to force him the ball a lot in order to get him this career accomplishment. A high scoring game with Oakland seems as good as any to get him closer to that mark.
Jermaine Gresham vs. Saints, $3,850
As Carson Palmer’s ability, and more importantly, time in the pocket has waned, Gresham’s role has increased in the Cardinals offense. He has at least seven fantasy points in four straight games, and has seen at least six targets in four of his last five. The Saints were 24th in DVOA against the tight end heading into Week 14 and this game is yet another with a 50-point total. Gresham should continue to produce at a low price.
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