I was asked this week about “fading” Anquan Boldin and I was shocked. What? Yeah, I guess… I’m not hear to tell you to fade all of the 49ers or to discuss players that rarely see the field. We’re going beyond that. I’m here to talk about guys that are great players in bad matchups, cost too much, will be played by too many people or all of the above. Anquan Boldin (although I enjoy the player and feel bad for him this year), need not apply.
Tom Brady at Dallas - $8,800
Make no mistake, Tom Brady will score a nice amount of FanDuel points this weekend. It is worth noting that Dallas has only given up five passing touchdown in four games. On the other hand, they are allowing an average of 164 all purpose yards to running backs every game. You have to think that Belichick will game plan around that information and choose to run the ball over and over again. But more importantly, if you are the kind of person that wants to stay away from highly owned players, take Tom Brady out of your lineup. In Week 3 Tom Brady was in 48.5% of lineups and according to a tweet from our own Even Silva last night, Brady was owned in 22% of already closed Thursday night contests. He’s a sure thing for points, but the secret is out. You will not be alone.
Le’Veon Bell at San Diego - $9,000
As you can see from Evan Silva’s tweet above, Bell is another highly owned player. Le’Veon Bell is the second most expensive back, but Pittsburgh must lean on him in the absence of Ben Roethlisberger and San Diego gives up the 2nd most FanDuel points to running backs. He’s averaging 23.6 FanDuel points per game since returning from his suspension so it’s hard to argue against playing him. But if you don’t want an expensive, highly owned player, then Bell is not your guy in Week 5.
Amari Cooper versus Denver for $7,300
Chris Harris Jr. and Aqib Talib continue to wreak havoc on opposing receivers. The Broncos have only allowed one touchdown to a wide receiver in four games. Amari Cooper continues to evolve into an elite receiver, so even though this is a terrible matchup, I paused at adding him to this list, especially since he’s still a bargain at $7,300. As Cooper and his quarterback, Derek Carr, improve over the season you will get many fruitful FanDuel performances. Week 5 is not a performance I would bank on.
Mark Ingram at Philadelphia - $8,000
Don’t look now, but the hapless Philadelphia Eagles haven’t allowed a rushing or receiving touchdown to a running back all season. Also, Khiry Robinson and C.J. Spiller are becoming more involved in the game plan. Mark Ingram certainly will remain the main ball carrier, I’m not worried about that, but he’s priced as the fifth most expensive running back this week and I don’t think he’ll live up to that value, especially without the end zone upside.
Antonio Brown at San Diego - $8,600
This pains me. Antonio Brown has long been considered the most reliable option in fantasy and you didn’t care if other people owned him. He is the best. Well, last week we saw that Michael Vick isn’t the same Michael Vick and he certainly isn’t Ben Roethlisberger. Much has been made about the spin on the ball when a left handed quarterback (Vick) throws rather than a right handed (Roethlisberger) one, and I agree. There are many adjustments that need to be made, but I don’t want a guy on my roster who’s in the midst of adjustments in Week 5. Also, San Diego has four cornerbacks that have allowed the absolute fewest FanDuel points to opposing wide receivers. The Steelers will look to Brown early and often, so the catches will be there, but this matchup screams fade and I am listening.
Jimmy Graham at Cincinnati - $6,600
As it stands, Graham is averaging 9.6 FanDuel points per game. If you’ve been playing him, you know that it’s actually been boom, bust, boom, bust. If you follow a pattern, this week is a boom. Maybe, but he’s touchdown dependent and Cincinnati has yet to allow a touchdown to a tight end. This is also about his cost. He’s only $100 more than Travis Kelce, but he’s still the second most expensive tight end on the board behind Gronk. Save your money and play Owen Daniels at $4,900 at Oakland, the team that gives up the absolute most points to opposing tight ends. Yes, you can save $1,700 and feel as sure about the production. That’s what FanDuel’s all about.
Best of luck this week and I hope you fade responsibly.