Draftster Daily Fantasy Football Helper: Week 1
We've made it. Fantasy football is finally here. But before you go set your lineups for the week, make sure you check out our friends at Draftster.
Draftster offers one-day fantasy sports contests for cash. And right now, you can go create an account at Draftster.com for a 100% free entry into an NFL $1,000 free roll.
Not sure who to select? Don't worry - we've got you covered.
Draftster Optimal Lineup for Week 1
Remember to always check our up-to-date optimal lineups here.
In what is expected to be one of the highest scoring games of the week (Vegas set the over/under at 52), Drew Brees and the Saints travel to Atlanta to take on the Falcons. Brees, who has averaged more than 41 pass attempts per game each of the past four seasons, gets an opportunity to face an Atlanta defense that gave up the seventh most fantasy points (19.6 per week) to opposing quarterbacks last season. Brees finished last year with the second-best Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) - a measure of how effective a player is in terms of real-life points added or subtracted - total in the NFL at 175.57, and gets to play against a poor defense in a dome. It's no surprise our algorithms love him this week.
With Dwayne Bowe suspended for week one, both Jamaal Charles and Donnie Avery get a bump in value. Charles is one of the most valuable fantasy commodities regardless, but given that the Titans gave up the third-most fantasy points to opposing running backs last season in the league, Charles is very worth the $7,800 price tag.
Although the Titans pass defense was decent last year, Avery becomes the de facto number one wide receiver in Kansas City with Bowe out. Behind Avery on the depth chart are Junior Hemingway and Frankie Hammond who have logged a combined 13 total NFL receptions. At just $3,200 Avery is a great play, despite the poor matchup.
Another player whose value has increased with one of his teammates on the shelf is Julius Thomas. Wes Welker runs a lot of similar routes over the middle of the field as Thomas does, and with him suspended for the first four games of the season for violating the league's substance abuse policy, Orange Julius should see a substantial increase in targets. Thomas finished the season with the fourth-highest Reception NEP among all tight ends at 78.15, and is primed for an increased role.
Lastly, there are two running backs that our algorithms like more than their price tags. Our numbers project Marshawn Lynch to be the third-highest scorer at running back in Week 1, yet he has the 16th-highest price tag at only $5,600 on Draftster. Lynch should carry the load early and often against a Packers defense that gave up the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs last season at 22.8.
Although the difference between his price and our projections isn't as substantial as it is for Lynch, our algorithms view Le'Veon Bell as undervalued at $6,000. We project Bell as the sixth-best fantasy running back this week, but he's priced as the eighth. The Browns gave up the 13th-most points to opposing running backs last season and, given the sorry state of their offense, the Steelers should be winning for most of the game, which means more work for Bell on the ground. Both Lynch and Bell make spectacular plays at their price.