College Football Daily Fantasy Helper: Saturday 10/17/20 Main Slate
In this preview, I'll break down the Saturday main slate into three categories based on FanDuel's salaries: players to build around, value plays, and players to avoid.
Players to build around carry expensive salaries, but their ceiling is high enough to consider prioritizing them in your lineup. Value plays are lower-salaried options who usually come with some risk, but adding them to your lineup will help you pay for the expensive stars. Players to avoid are fantasy-relevant options you might normally consider but have a tough matchup this week and are unlikely to live up to their usual expectations.
All references to betting totals and spreads are from the FanDuel Sportsbook.
Players to Build Around
QB Matt Corral, Ole Miss ($10,400) vs. Arkansas
Matt Corral has faced three typically strong SEC defenses (Alabama, Kentucky and Florida) and posted at least 26 points in each game. He draws a considerably less intimidating defense this week against Arkansas, which gives him an elite ceiling. Corral should also benefit from the fact Arkansas' offense appears to be much improved. As a result, Ole Miss is favored by only 1.5 points, which gives this matchup elite shootout potential.
QB Dillon Gabriel, UCF ($9,900) vs. Memphis
Given UCF's desire to throw the ball -- Dillon Gabriel has topped 40 pass attempts in every game for this year -- and the total for this game sitting at 73.5, Gabriel is virtually a must-roster quarterback on this slate. Memphis likely has the best defense Gabriel has faced this year, but the Tigers also just allowed 474 yards and 33.7 fantasy points to SMU's Shane Buechele their last time out. Stacking players from both sides of this game looks like a good strategy.
QB Brady White, Memphis ($9,100) vs. UCF
Under Mike Norvell (now at Florida State), Memphis favored running the ball, but that trend may be changing slightly under new head coach Ryan Silverfield. Through two games, Brady White is averaging 39.5 pass attempts per game, up significantly from his average of 30.1 in 2019. UCF has already given up more than 20 fantasy points to quarterbacks in two of three games, and in this likely shootout, White's ceiling is well beyond that number.
QB Feleipe Franks, Arkansas ($8,700) vs. Ole Miss
The Ole Miss defense is giving up 35.5 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks, the most in the nation. Feleipe Franks' production has been inconsistent throughout his career, but he did flash some exciting upside with 31.5 fantasy points against the Auburn Tigers. According to Sports Info Solutions, Franks' deep ball has improved significantly this season, which bodes well for him against the Rebels' defense, which is allowing a 61.1 percent completion rate on throws at least 15 yards downfield.
RB Kylin Hill, Mississippi State ($8,900) vs. Texas A&M
Any running back who leads his team in targets is worth consideration for your lineups, and that's the case for Kylin Hill with a team-high 28 targets through three games. According to Sports Info Solutions, Texas A&M is allowing 9.9 yards per target to players lined up in the backfield. Mississippi State's recent offensive issues set a lower ceiling for Hill than we may have anticipated a few weeks ago, but he's still topped 17 points in each full game he's played this year.
WR Damonte Coxie, Memphis ($9,500) vs. UCF
Damonte Coxie leads Memphis with a 31.6 percent target share, and 40 percent of his targets have come on explosive routes -- defined as route types on which FBS receivers average 20 or more yards per reception -- according to Sports Info Solutions. That usage gives him a high ceiling every week, especially in a potential shootout with UCF.
WR Elijah Moore, Ole Miss ($9,400) vs. Arkansas
Elijah Moore is averaging 22.7 fantasy points per game despite reaching the end zone just once this season. Among the 50 highest-scoring receivers in the nation based on FanDuel points, Moore has the second lowest percentage of his points coming from touchdowns (8.8 percent). Given his extreme usage rate (38 percent target share) and the success of the Ole Miss offense, Moore's low touchdown percentage won't continue for long. In a likely high-scoring affair with Arkansas, this could be the week Moore breaks out with multiple scores.
QB K.J. Costello, Mississippi State ($8,000) vs. Texas A&M
Mike Leach did not commit to starting K.J. Costello earlier this week, so keep an eye on news regarding this situation leading up to kickoff. After scoring 13.9 and 4.9 points over the last two weeks, obviously there's a low floor for Costello in a struggling Mississippi State offense. However, we've also seen him post 37.1 fantasy points against LSU, and we know Leach has a long history of developing quarterbacks who light up the fantasy scoreboard. Costello can no longer be considered a quarterback worth building the majority of your rosters around, but a Leach quarterback on this salary will always be worth throwing into a few lineups.
RB Isaiah Spiller, Texas A&M ($7,700) vs. Mississippi State
Isaiah Spiller saw just 19 carries through Texas A&M's first two games, but he finally appeared to be unleashed last week against Florida, picking up 174 yards and 31.7 fantasy points on 27 carries. The Mississippi State run defense has been strong this year, giving up just 13.7 fantasy points per game to running backs. But Spiller, who leads the SEC in yards after contact and forced missed tackles, appears be in line for a workload that will make him a steal at this salary.
RB Rakeem Boyd, Arkansas ($7,500) vs. Ole Miss
Rakeem Boyd has generated just 7.7 fantasy points this season, but his only full game prior to suffering a foot injury came against Georgia's defense. Boyd averaged 6.2 yards per carry as the lead back on a 2-10 Arkansas team last season, so we should still have confidence in his ability to produce behind an improved offensive line versus more favorable competition. After missing last week's contest, he's expected back against Ole Miss, but be sure to monitor his status on Saturday morning. Ole Miss is giving up 43.5 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs, the third worst rate in the nation.
WR Treylon Burks, Arkansas ($7,100) vs. Ole Miss
Treylon Burks is another banged-up Razorback expected to return just in time to feast on the Ole Miss defense. In Arkansas' season opener, the only full game Burks has played, he led the Razorbacks with 11 targets (31 percent target share). Monitor Burks' status on Saturday to be sure he's healthy, but he was back on the practice field this week and is expected to suit up.
WR Ontaria Wilson, Florida State ($6,400) vs. North Carolina
Florida State's leading receiver, Tamorrion Terry, is out with a knee injury, which should open the door for Ontaria Wilson to see a significant role. Wilson is third on the team with a 13.1 percent target share, trailing Terry and tight end Camren McDonald ($5,500). Due to his cheap cap hit, McDonald is also an option, but since Wilson lines up on the outside -- where Terry also plays when healthy -- Wilson is likely to be the most direct beneficiary of Terry's absence.
Players to Avoid
WR Calvin Austin, Memphis ($7,700) vs. UCF
Calvin Austin has seen a 19 percent target share this year, and in a likely shootout, you can justify throwing him into a few lineups. He's being placed in this category, however, based on the fact he's seen only two red zone targets and scored on both. That has elevated his fantasy production beyond expectations for his usage and led to an increased salary he might struggle to live up to as the third option in the Memphis offense behind Coxie and Sean Dykes ($8,500).
Ryan McCrystal is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Ryan McCrystal also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username cfbfilmroom. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.