Daily Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Primer: Week 14
As we enter Week 14 injuries are taking their toll on the wide receiver position, so be sure to monitor those situations closely. In some cases, we might be rooting for players to suit up in time for Sunday's action, but in others, it may actually beneficial for the backup to step in and provide us with a cheap option.
In this preview, I'll break down the wide receivers into three categories based on FanDuel's prices: players to build around, value plays, and players to avoid.
Players to build around are more expensive, but their ceilings are high enough that you should consider prioritizing them in your lineup. Value plays are cheaper options who usually come with some risk, but adding them to your lineup will help you afford the expensive stars. Players to avoid are guys you might normally consider at their price tag but have tough matchups and are unlikely to live up to their usual expectations.
All references to betting totals and spreads are from the FanDuel Sportsbook.
Receivers to Build Around
Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ($7,900) -- The Indianapolis Colts rank 12th in passing defense, but they've still managed to get burned by top receivers this year. In six of their 12 games, Indy has allowed a top-12 fantasy performance to a wide receiver. It's tough to decide between Chris Godwin and Mike Evans ($7,700) in this matchup, but the Colts have been slightly more vulnerable to receivers who line up in the slot. According to Sports Info Solutions, Indy is allowing 15.3 fantasy points per game to receivers lined up in the slot, compared to 11.3 to receivers lined up wide.
Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons ($7,800) -- Julio Jones missed last week but is expected to suit up against the Carolina Panthers for a showdown with cornerback James Bradberry. Earlier this season, Bradberry was a dominant force in Carolina's secondary, but since sitting out Week 10 due to a groin injury, he's struggled to regain his form. Bradberry's numbers in coverage, via Sports Info Solutions, demonstrate why this may be a good matchup for Jones:
Julian Edelman, New England Patriots ($7,600) -- New England's defense has struggled with elite quarterbacks this year -- primarily Deshaun Watson and Lamar Jackson -- and Patrick Mahomes will likely create similar challenges. Assuming the Kansas City Chiefs can put up points on New England, that could lead to a big game for Edelman. In those previous matchups against the Houston Texans and Baltimore Ravens, Julian Edelman saw a combined 22 targets and posted 30.8 fantasy points, as the Patriots were forced to throw the ball often in an attempt to keep pace.
Adam Thielen, Minnesota Vikings ($7,300) -- Adam Thielen hasn't suited up since Week 9 due to a hamstring injury and his status for Sunday is still in doubt. If he's good to go, however, the Detroit Lions are an ideal matchup. According to Sports Info Solutions, Detroit plays the highest rate of man coverage in the league. During the six full games in which Thielen has played, he's commanded a 43 percent target share when the defense is in man, compared to 25 percent versus zone.
D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers ($7,100) -- The Atlanta Falcons have allowed a top-15 performance from a wide receiver in seven of 12 games this season, which includes D.J. Moore's 13.5 points against them in Week 15. Moore has been hot lately, ranking among the top 15 receivers in each of the last four weeks and should continue that trend against Atlanta's shaky secondary.
James Washington, Pittsburgh Steelers ($6,700) -- With JuJu Smith-Schuster expected to sit out again this week, James Washington could benefit from an increased role in the slot against the Arizona Cardinals. According to Sports Info Solutions, Arizona is allowing 26.2 fantasy points per game to wide receivers lined up in the slot, the second-worst mark in the league. With a healthy Smith-Schuster on the field Washington primarily lines up on the outside, but when given opportunities in the slot he has averaged 11.7 yards per target.
Robby Anderson, New York Jets ($6,400) -- Robby Anderson has been a risky fantasy play this year, being held under five points in six different games. However, he also offers upside as the New York Jets big-play receiver, leading the team with nine receptions of 20 or more yards. That trend bodes well for Anderson against the Miami Dolphins who have allowed the fourth-most pass plays of 20 or more yards (51) and have surrendered a top-10 fantasy score to a wide receiver in seven of their last eight games.
Jamison Crowder, New York Jets ($6,000) -- Since he's less of a big-play threat, Jamison Crowder probably has a lower ceiling than teammate Robby Anderson, but he's still a viable option at this price tag against the Dolphins. Crowder has yet to top 20 fantasy points in a game this season, but he's still managed to finish among the top 20 wide receivers in five different weeks.
Receivers to Avoid
DeVante Parker, Miami Dolphins ($7,200) -- After finishing as the highest-scoring receiver in the league last week, DeVante Parker's price tag has risen by $1,200. He does draw a good matchup against the Jets, but he may struggle to live up to the expectations of being the 13th-highest priced receiver on the slate. Parker's dominant Week 13 outing was the first time this year he's ranked among the top 10 receivers, and he has just three other games among the top 20 receivers.
John Brown, Buffalo Bills ($6,400) -- Due to his ceiling as a big-play threat, John Brown is usually worth considering for tournament lineups. However, the Baltimore Ravens are likely to neutralize him this week. Baltimore hasn't allowed a receiver to top 15 fantasy points since Week 9 (Mohamed Sanu), and only one receiver (Jarvis Landry) has reached 20 points against the Ravens defense this season.
Ted Ginn Jr., New Orleans Saints ($4,900) -- As a home-run threat with a dirt-cheap price tag, Ted Ginn Jr. is often a tempting tournament dart throw. However, the San Francisco 49ers defense has allowed just 19 receptions of 20 or more yards this season, the lowest mark in the league. This is arguably the toughest defensive matchup Ginn faces all season.
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.