FanDuel Conference Cash Game Lineup Advice
Two games slates are always a challenge and this week is no different. This is especially true because we’ve got three of the best defenses in football playing. What’s more, is that there are three crummy quarterbacks on the slate and the other will likely be playing through stitches. Yikes! You’d think this would all lead to me feeling pretty crummy about any lineup I could fit together, but believe it or not, I was somehow fortunate enough to get nearly all of my favorite options at every position in under the salary cap.
Case Keenum (MIN): $8,000 @ PHI
Sure, his stats were inflated last game by the 61 yard Minnesota Miracle play by Diggs. Even still, he was solid yet again versus a quality Saints secondary, and while it may be odd to admit, their secondary is a whole tier better than what the Eagles will bring out this week. The Patriots have the easiest secondary on the slate, but the Eagles are right behind them and there is no way I’m playing Blake Bortles in a cash game when he may throw just 20 times again. Keenum wouldn’t even be an option most weeks, but in this small of a slate, he looks like the safest to me even at his price.
Leonard Fournette (JAX): $8,500 @ NE
There is just one running back on the slate that we can trust to get even 15 touches and that is Fournette. In fact, I’d be shocked if he saw fewer than 20. What is perhaps equally important is the fact that he’s got the easiest matchup of any back in the slate too. He is a must-play and will likely be over 70% owned in cash games as a result.
Jerick McKinnon (MIN): $6,800 @ PHI
Some might tell you that James White or Dion Lewis is a better idea. While one or the other might prove true, there is no denying that neither is remotely safe. Lewis lost goal-line carries and overall touches to White last week, and now the split backfield is getting Rex Burkhead returning. They all have to go against that stout Jags’ front seven too. It is just an ugly situation that I prefer to avoid in cash games. McKinnon, meanwhile, will be used plenty as the Eagles stuff the run, but are vulnerable through the air. He also has big-play ability on top of his reliability.
Stefon Diggs (MIN): $6,700 @ PHI
This is not chasing points after what happened last week. Rather, it is chasing the easiest coverage matchup on the slate. Jalen Mills has been among the easiest marks in the league over the past two years and should see Diggs for the majority of the game. We can bet on a solid portion of Keenum’s production coming via Diggs receptions and scores.
Marqise Lee (JAX): $6,100 @ NE
While the Jags managed to score 45 points last week, Lee didn’t do much in the way to help with that. Still, he returned to his season target share at 23% and with the game script shaping up the way everyone sees it, Bortles may be forced to throw 35 passes. Lee has a decent shot to end the week with more targets than any receiver on the slate, and at his price, that type of opportunity is too good to pass up.
Chris Hogan (NE): $6,100 vs JAX
Last week it was Amendola, but we know it changes every week with the Patriots. Belichick is better at exploiting weaknesses than any coach in sports history. The weakness in the Jags’ cover 3 are seam routes from slot receivers and wouldn’t you know it, that is precisely Hogan’s specialty. If I were going to bet on a touchdown from any receiver this week, Hogan would be my pick, as he should see 7+ targets and has been their top red zone weapon while healthy this year.
Rob Gronkowski (NE): $8,400 vs JAX
There is just too much money available to us and not enough star power on the slate to warrant fading Gronk in cash games. Sure, the Jags’ secondary is incredible, but it isn’t as though Zach Ertz is going to have it much easier versus the Saints. The matter of the fact is, the Patriots have by far the highest implied total on the week, and as usually is the case, that means Gronk will likely be right in the middle of all that action.
Stephen Gostowski (NE): $5,000 vs JAX
On a slate this small, you take what you can afford at kicker unless they are in horrible weather conditions. It just so works out that my lineup enables me to fit the consensus top kicker on the slate in under my budget. As I mentioned, the Pats have the highest implied total, and Gostowski has been the best kicker in football for the better part of the last decade so I’ll gladly take him.
Jaguars Defense (JAX): $4,400 @ NE
It is amazing to me that the best defense in maybe 20 years is the cheapest on the weekend. Sure, there is a better than 50% chance that they give up 20+ points, but they also get after the quarterback and force turnovers better than any team in football. Granted, the Pats are the best at avoiding it, but this price is just too low for a team that averages 13 FanDuel points per game.
Thanks for reading. If you haven’t already, please check out the FantasyPros Football Podcast (below) that I co-host with Mike Tagliere. Good luck this season.