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Top FanDuel NFL DFS Upside Picks: Week 9 (2020)

Nov 6, 2020

Welcome back to Ball Street DFS, where finance and fantasy meet. In this weekly article, I apply financial metrics to the fantasy football world to give you an edge when building your FanDuel lineups. 

For the second straight week, my “Blue Chip” (Davante Adams, WR2, 26.8 FanDuel points), “Mid-Cap” (Tyler Boyd, WR15, 16.6), and “Penny Stock” (Brandon Aiyuk, WR7, 19.1) wide receiver plays all finished within the top-15 at the position. Outside of wide receiver, however, the results were pretty hit-or-miss on Ball Street in Week 8. Mid-Cap tight end Rob Gronkowski (TE4, 12.1) was a highlight, while Blue Chip picks Aaron Rodgers (QB5, 22.54) and Derrick Henry (RB8, 17.2) failed to put up week-winning performances. Additionally, the injury bug hit hard, taking George Kittle, Darrell Henderson, and Jimmy Garoppolo out of play. Perhaps most disappointing was Jonathan Taylor (RB49, 4.1), who struggled immensely while nursing an undisclosed ankle injury. Moving forward, I’m ready to rock and roll on a Week 9 slate ripe with underpriced upside.

Today, I’ll be highlighting 12 players who, based on investment metrics, are oozing with upside and need to be plugged into your Week 9 DFS lineups.

Before we dive in, let me break down the lingo we use on “Ball Street.” First, the focus of this article is a value I coined “Upside per Dollar,” which will be referred to as UPD. “UPD” is the product of a modified financial formula that determines how much “blowup potential” a given player offers you per dollar of your investment (his FanDuel price). In short, UPD tells you which players present the most potential bang for your buck. Below, I will highlight the 12 players who boast exceptionally high UPD scores for Week 9. 

Each position group is broken down as follows: 

  • Blue Chips: the studs presenting massive upside that come with a higher price tag
  • Mid-Caps: the more affordable upside picks
  • Penny Stocks: the cheapest upside plays FanDuel has to offer
  • *Cash Cow: The one must-start UPD standout among all 12 listed players

Lastly, if you’re looking to go all-in on this week’s upside picks, you can check out Ball Street’s “All-Upside Lineup” at the bottom of the article. Follow me on Twitter @ballstreetff to track the results from Week 9 and beyond!

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Blue Chip:

Josh Allen (BUF) vs. Seattle ($8,200): Allen has had a quiet few weeks, but I fully expect him to re-emerge in a big way as he faces a porous Seahawks defense giving up the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks.


Justin Herbert (LAC) vs. Las Vegas ($7,900): The red-hot rookie has been out of this world. He’s averaging 300 passing yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game since taking over as the Chargers’ starting quarterback. 

Penny Stock:

Drew Lock (DEN) vs. Atlanta ($7,200): Coming off a 248-yard, three-score comeback performance against the Chargers, Lock and the Broncos take on a Falcons defense that has given up 26.4 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.

Running Backs

Blue Chip:

Dalvin Cook (MIN) vs. Detroit ($9,300): Last week’s overall RB1 (47.6 FanDuel points!) follows up his game-breaking performance with a matchup against a Lions defense that gives up the second-most fantasy points to opposing running backs.


James Robinson (JAC) vs. Houston ($7,300): Fresh off his bye week, the overall fantasy RB5 should see heavy work both on the ground and through the air against a vulnerable Texans run defense. 

Penny Stock:

J.K. Dobbins (BAL) vs. Indianapolis ($5,300): With running back Mark Ingram unlikely to suit up due to injury, the electric rookie should continue to see an expanded role in the Ravens’ rushing attack. 

Wide Receivers

Blue Chip:

Stefon Diggs (BUF) vs. Seattle ($7,600): The Allen-Diggs stack is a must this week, as the Bills will have plenty of scoring opportunities in a barnburner with the Seahawks. The game currently touts a league-high 55-point over/under.


Justin Jefferson (MIN) vs. Detroit ($6,800): Two weeks removed from a 166-yard, two-touchdown performance, the slippery rookie finds himself in a winnable matchup with the Lions’ mid-pack secondary.  

Penny Stock:

*Diontae Johnson (PIT) vs. Dallas ($6,000): Despite struggling with a myriad of injuries, Johnson has seen double-digit targets in every full game he has played this season. He is fully healthy and primed for a blowup performance against a Cowboys secondary that has given up the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers. *Johnson is this week’s Cash Cow. Get him in your lineup!

Tight Ends

Blue Chip:

Darren Waller (LV) vs. Los Angeles Chargers ($6,400): Even if we include last week’s weather-dictated game script, Waller is averaging over eight targets per game since Week 4. He should see heavy looks once again in a matchup with the Chargers that sports an over/under of 53.5 points.


Rob Gronkowski (TB) vs. New Orleans ($5,800): As I said last week, Gronk is BACK. With a touchdown in each of his last three games, look for number 87 to add another one against a Saints defense that’s hemorrhaging fantasy points to opposing tight ends.

Penny Stock:

Logan Thomas (WAS) vs. New York Giants ($5,000): With a touchdown grab in two straight games before heading into the bye week, Thomas should see an expanded role in Week 9 as the Football Team’s number two target.

Ball Street’s Week 9 All-Upside Lineup

  • QB – Josh Allen ($8,200)
  • RB – Dalvin Cook ($9,300)
  • RB – James Robinson ($7,300)
  • WR – Stefon Diggs ($7,600)
  • WR – Justin Jefferson ($6,800)
  • WR – Diontae Johnson ($6,000)
  • TE – Rob Gronkowski ($5,800)
  • FLEX – J.K. Dobbins ($5,300)
  • DST – Houston ($3,700)

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Beyond our daily fantasy football content, be sure to check out our Daily Fantasy Football Tools. From our Value Plays – which allows you to identify players who are projected to outperform their salaries – to our DFS Cheat Sheets – that helps you get a quick read on the day’s players – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.

Stephen Krupka is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Stephen, check out his archive or follow him @ballstreetff.

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