Daily Fantasy Football Quarterback Primer: Week 1
Welcome to the first edition of my weekly NFL DFS quarterback primer article. Each week I will be looking to find an edge at the quarterback position for daily fantasy football contests.
In this weekly column, you will find the best value quarterbacks for tournaments and head-to-head cash games. Additionally, I will highlight one or two quarterbacks to avoid in the upcoming week.
Without further ado, lets dig in.
Best Overall Plays of the Week
Jameis Winston (FanDuel Price: $7,500) -- Winston gets a great Week 1 matchup at home against a San Francisco 49ers defense that let up at least two passing touchdowns in every road game last season. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have an implied total of 25 points in this game, a top-10 clip for the week, and are expected to air it our under new head coach Bruce Arians. Stacking Winston with Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and/or O.J. Howard could be the highest-upside stack of the week for tournaments. Our projections have Winston with the most passing attempts (37) and fourth-most passing touchdowns in Week 1. Winston has a high enough floor for cash games and a high enough ceiling to justify starting him in tournaments.
Nick Foles ($6,500) -- Foles is my favorite value play of Week 1. Playing in a game with the highest over/under on the main slate, Foles will likely be forced to air it out versus the Kansas City Chiefs. In road games last year, the KC defense allowed five different quarterbacks to throw for three or more touchdowns in a game. Getting that upside at such a cheap cost is hard to pass on. Our projections have Foles attempting the sixth-most passes and scoring the 10th-most passing touchdowns in Week 1. Cheap volume makes Foles an excellent cash-game play.
Kyler Murray ($7,300) -- Murray is my favorite value play of the week for tournaments. numberFire has him projected for the fifth-most fantasy points among quarterbacks this week, giving him the second-highest projected value on FanDuel. Murray is at home against a Detroit Lions defense that is bottom-10 against the pass, according to our schedule-adjusted numbers. Kliff Kingsbury, the new head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, is expected to run the high-tempo, pass-heavy offense he ran as a college coach. Projected to have the third-most carries in Week 1 among passers, Murray also offers elite rushing upside. When we have a quarterback who has high passing upside combined with a huge rushing ceiling and he's priced outside of the top-12 most expensive quarterbacks, he will be a target in GPPs.
Josh Allen ($6,900) -- Allen will be a risky pick each week due to his inconsistent passing ability. However, his rushing upside and willingness to throw it deep will make him a weekly consideration in tournaments if his price stays this low. Our projections have him with the third-most rushing yards and rushing touchdowns among signal callers in Week 1. Allen had 101 rushing yards and a touchdown the last time he faced the New York Jets. Allen's passing upside is somewhat capped in a game with the second-lowest over/under of the week. With one of the widest range of outcomes for the week, Allen is a high-risk, high-reward player in Week 1.
Lamar Jackson ($7,400) -- There is a good chance Jackson is a consistent name in this part of the column each week due to his weekly rushing upside. Our projections have him with four more rushing attempts and 20 more rushing yards than any other quarterback for Week 1. With passing touchdowns being worth four points and rushing touchdowns being worth six, the importance of Jackson's running ability can't be overstated. Going against a Miami Dolphins team that has the worst run defense and second-worst passing defense, per our models, Jackson is one of the safest plays of the week.
Quarterback to Avoid
Russell Wilson ($8,200) -- The Seattle Seahawks are the second-biggest favorite of the slate as 9.5-point favorites at home versus the Cincinnati Bengals. The Seahawks were the only team in 2018 who ran the ball more than they passed it. A scenario in which the Seahawks get an early lead could be bad news for Wilson in fantasy. When leading by seven or more points last season, the Seahawks threw the ball only 33% of the time. This gives Wilson a dangerously low floor and makes him an easy fade at his top-six price tag. Our models have Wilson projected for the sixth-fewest passing attempts in Week 1.
Samuel Factor is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Samuel Factor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Samfact2. 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.