As we head into the weekend, be sure to check out all the content rolling onto the Rotoworld Daily page. Here’s a list of articles looking at the FanDuel NFL Week 2 slate. I will be updating as new columns are added, so consider this section as the DFS Table of Contents.
RotoGrinders NFL Primer by Stephen Keech
FanDuel NFL GPP Pivots by Spencer Limbach
FanDuel NFL Grind Down: QB/RB by Stephen Young
FanDuel NFL Bargains by Renee Miller
QB/WR/TE Tournament Stacks by Spencer Limbach
FantasyLabs Ownership & Pivots by Matthew Freedman
VIDEO: FanDuel NFL 6-Pack hosted by Chris Prince
FanDuel NFL Fades by Renee Miller
WR/TE Grind Down by Josh Lewis
Rankings vs DFS Pricing Plays by Rich Hribar (coming Saturday)
Now onto the FanDuel NFL Must Plays for Week 2!
Just a reminder, this column includes only Sunday games, as that’s considered the main slate on FanDuel.
PLATINUM: Build your lineup around these guys
Aaron Rodgers – QB – Green Bay (FanDuel Price: $9,100)
Last week’s quarterback situation was somewhat murky for the main slate. We had some good, but not necessarily great plays from a matchup point of view. That’s not the case this time around. Aaron Rodgers, Matt Ryan, and Tom Brady all hold well-aligned draws to spark fantasy upside. It’s tempting to go with Brady against a shoddy New Orleans secondary, but Rodgers is my final decision. There’s a chance Brady and Ryan could literally hand things over to the running game, especially in goal-line situations. As for Rodgers, he has upside of running to paydirt himself or facilitating an extended running game with dump passes to Ty Montgomery. That’s the difference between Rodgers and the rest of the pack in my opinion. Of course, the matchup at Atlanta has all the makings of a Sunday Night shootout, and A-Rod has been brilliant against the Falcons in recent memory.
Jordy Nelson – WR – Green Bay (FanDuel Price: $8,100)
My love for Aaron Rodgers unsurprisingly extends to his favorite receiver. Rodgers and Nelson were able to salvage solid fantasy outings in one of their toughest matchups of the season last week (vs Seattle). While there’s some concern with Atlanta CB Desmond Trufant shadowing Nelson, it’s not dissuading me. Seeing promising volume from arguably the best QB in the league, then throwing in a potential shootout should carry Nelson to value. The discount Jordy brings compared to A.Brown, J.Jones, or M.Evans can help solidify the rest of your lineup as well.
GOLD: Next wave to consider in terms of priority
Larry Fitzgerald – WR – Arizona (FanDuel Price: $6,600)
In all honesty, I’d probably shell out $7500 or more for Fitzgerald … Larry wasn’t bad last week, but he narrowly missed several touchdown opportunities to really make his fantasy score sparkle. The 13 targets at Detroit are a byproduct of game script with Arizona trailing through the second half. However, I’m expecting another double-digit helping of looks with David Johnson out of the picture. His opponent, Indianapolis, was eaten alive by Jared Goff and Cooper Kupp last week. Surely Fitzgerald will find some room to operate in this promising draw.
Melvin Gordon – RB – LA Chargers (FanDuel Price: $7,600)
Bell, Elliott, and McCoy all have less-than-ideal matchups to pay full price on FanDuel. That has me looking cheaper with Melvin Gordon as an RB1. The Chargers’ workhorse back looked good despite a tough matchup at Denver on Monday. He should have an easier time with Miami this weekend, and the game script could lend itself more favorably for the LAC rushing attack as well … Make no mistake about it, Gordon is a borderline elite fantasy running back locked into 20-25+ touches per game. I’ll gladly accept his discount from the aforementioned expensive runners.
SILVER: Good options that narrowly rank ahead of similar players
Zach Ertz – TE – Philadelphia (FanDuel Price: $6,100)
My soft spot for Zach Ertz will continue to grow as long as he maintains the eight target, eight reception, 93 yard type of statlines from last week. The rationale fed so perfectly in that game: Jordan Matthews is out of town, meaning Ertz will see more looks on underneath routes. I find it hard to believe Philadelphia will deviate from this strategy. Ertz could lead the Eagles in targets yet again, and I’m comfortable rostering him in all formats.
Kareem Hunt – RB – Kansas City (FanDuel Price: $7,800)
Bold prediction of the week: Kareem Hunt will not replicate his statline from last week … In all seriousness, I’m buying into Hunt as a high-end RB moving through the season. Running backs tend to thrive in Andy Reid’s system, while Hunt has the talent/volume combination to become a weekly fantasy asset. I’m prioritizing Melvin Gordon over Hunt (more of a proven commodity), but making room for both on FanDuel is a preferred strategy. If you don’t have enough salary for Hunt, Marshawn Lynch, Jacquizz Rodgers, and Ty Montgomery are adequate fallback options (more on them in the “participation ribbon” section).
BRONZE: Not 100% necessities, but they mix well into a quality lineup
Adam Thielen – WR – Minnesota (FanDuel Price: $5,800)
New Orleans’ terrible pass defense played a big part in Thielen’s eye-opening 9 reception 157 yard performance last Monday. However, the Minnesota slot receiver has plenty of staying power within the fantasy spotlight, and he’s too cheap considering that fact. Let’s not forget Thielen racked up 85+ yards in three of his final five games last season, including a breakout 12-202-2 line at Green Bay. Needless to say, he’s an easy WR3 lift to round out the position.
Baltimore Ravens Defense (FanDuel Price: $4,700)
DeShone Kizer looked pretty good in his debut last week, but his first road game at Baltimore may write a different story. Clearly the Bengals’ offense has problems (as we saw again on Thursday night), but the Ravens defense looked pretty salty against them, regardless of their current malfunctions. I like the value they provide on FanDuel here.
PARTICIPATION RIBBONS: Fell just short of a featured spot
Tom Brady – QB – New England (FanDuel Price: $9,200)
Brady-Cooks-Gronkowski makes for a fine alternative to Rodgers-Nelson-Cobb-Bennett in any format. I’m leaning towards the latter for previously stated reasons, but take note that Brady and company are firmly within consideration through all formats.
Julio Jones – WR – Atlanta (FanDuel Price: $8,800)
Jones may be the top overall receiver in this slate, a viable spend if you have the cap space to reach him. Even though he was a disappointment last week, he should be peppered with plenty of targets and big play opportunities in this likely shootout.
Marshawn Lynch – RB – Oakland (FanDuel Price: $7,200)
Lynch is a nice lift through all formats, especially if you don’t have the salary to make Kareem Hunt work. Checking in as double-digit home favorites, the Raiders should feature a run-heavy approach that feeds Lynch’s fantasy potential.
Ty Montgomery – RB – Green Bay (FanDuel Price: $6,500)
You may not want to mesh Rodgers, Nelson, and Montgomery in the same lineup, but it’s still conceivable. Montgomery does enough in the passing game to be considered a stacking extension of Rodgers. On top of that, there should be an abundance of scoring/yards to go around for the Green Bay offense.
Stefon Diggs – WR – Minnesota (FanDuel Price: $6,500)
The matchup isn’t as favorable as last week, but Diggs is still a fine mid-range target. I’m mostly focused on the savings of teammate Adam Thielen; however, Diggs is firmly on my short list of WRs through all formats.
Martellus Bennett – TE – Green Bay (FanDuel Price: $5,800)
Most of my action at tight end will be split between Zach Ertz and Martellus Bennett. Martellus wasn’t bad in his Packer debut, but six targets, three receptions, and 43 yards can be considered the lower end of his range. The matchup is much more favorable at Atlanta, unleashing Bennett’s upside.
The Kicker Conundrum
Just so we’re on the same page, I’ll keep this section brief throughout the season. Dan Bailey ($4800), Blair Walsh ($4600), and Phil Dawson ($4500) are my targets through different salary ranges. I’m usually playing the pricing game between them and Giorgio Tavecchio ($4700), whichever one fits best into my lineup.