Draftster Daily Fantasy Football Helper: Week 5
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Not sure who to select in your lineup? Don't worry - we've got you covered.
Draftster Optimal Lineup for Week 5
Remember to always check our up-to-date optimal lineups here.
Coming off of a 262-yard, 3-touchdown thrashing of the Saints, Tony Romo once again makes a strong play this week. Over the past three weeks since his Week 1 implosion against the 49ers, Romo has thrown for 655 yards, 6 touchdowns and only a single interception. The Cowboys' signal-caller currently ranks ninth in the NFL with a 26.27 Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) total, and is finally beginning to look fully healthy after offseason back surgery.
The only reason to be skeptical about Romo this weekend is because he's facing off with a Texans defense that allows the fourth least fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks in the league. But he's nearly impossible to ignore at his price. Romo costs just $5,200 this week, making him the 23rd most expensive quarterback on the board.
With the Steelers going to visit Jacksonville this week, Bell has one of the most favorable matchups on the board. The Jaguars have given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this season while allowing the eight-most rushing yards per game and the fifth most rushing touchdowns in the league.
With Bell, however, it's not just about the matchup. The Steelers' sophomore running back has been arguably the most complete runner in the league so far this season. Bell has the second-most rushing yards in the NFL, the ninth-best yards per carry average, the second-most receptions and the third-most receiving yards among running backs in the league. He also ranks second at the position in Total NEP at 15.87. Bell is one of the best running backs in the league and faces one of the worst run defenses in the league this week. This one is a no-brainer.
While Bell has been one of the best running backs in fantasy through the first four weeks of the season, McCoy may be the most disappointing. So far, he is averaging 2.7 yards per carry, only has one touchdown, hasn't had a 100-yard rushing game and hasn't caught a pass since Week 2. Shady has been bad this season, plain and simple. Although many people may be worried about his early-season performance, I am confident that he will bounce back, and so are our algorithms.
This week, Shady gets a matchup against a Rams' defense that has struggled against the run all season long. St. Louis is giving up a whopping 5.1 yards per carry, 155 rushing yards per game and has given up four rushing touchdowns in just three games. All of those stats rank in the bottom five in the league. Philadelphia is also at home and is a heavy favorite in this game, both of which bode well for the Eagles' running back. All signs point to a bounce back week for McCoy. He is worth his expensive price tag.
While McCoy still costs $8,000 despite his slow start to the season, Forte's price has dropped all the way to $6,600 despite coming off of a game where he rushed for 122 yards while adding five catches for 49 yards against the Packers. Forte gets another juicy matchup this week against a Panthers' defensive unit who has allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing defenses so far this season. Considering how dominant Carolina's defense was last season, there is still a misconception that they are a tough matchup despite their early season struggles, which means that many fake footballers will be fading the Bears' running back this week even at such a reasonable price. At just $6,600 and against Carolina, Forte is one of the elite options at running back this week.
As I just mentioned, the Panthers' defense has not been good this year, and those struggles haven't just been against the run. Carolina is giving up the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers so far this season and have been demoralized by opposing wide receivers each of the past two weeks. In Week 3, Antonio Brown torched the Panthers for 10 catches, 90 yards and 2 touchdowns, which was followed up by Steve Smith embarrassing his former team to the tune of seven catches, 132 yards and two touchdowns.
Although he did catch a touchdown last week, Brandon Marshall's ankle is clearly still bothering him which has limited his route tree and ultimately his production. This opens the door for Alshon Jeffery to have a big game against the under-achieving Panthers' defense. Jeffery has played well this season, despite fighting through a hamstring injury of his own earlier in the year. The Bears' receiver has already caught 20 passes for 262 yards and a touchdown and is really starting to hit his stride. Jeffery is an absolute steal at just $4,900 in a favorable matchup.
The Patriots' offense has been terrible this year, especially through the air. New England ranks 27th in the league in Adjusted Passing NEP at -7.07, and are one of only six teams with a negative total. Out of the other five teams, two are have benched their veteran starters for rookies (Oakland and Jacksonville) and two have had their Week 1 starters miss time due to injury (Tampa Bay and Tennessee). A team led by Tom Brady doesn't seem to fit on this list, but there is absolutely no question that the Patriots belong on this type of list this season.
Despite all of New England's offensive trouble, Rob Gronkowski has still managed to keep decent fantasy value due to his ability to get into the end zone. We haven't seen the high volume from Gronk like we have in the past (he's only caught 13 balls through the first four games of the season) but he's averaging 11.3 yards per reception - which is a higher average than Jimmy Graham - and he has already caught three touchdowns. Gronkowski is second on the team in targets at 26, and his role in the offense should only increase as he continues to get healthier from his offseason knee surgery. This week, the Patriots take on the Bengals who, despite having one of the best defenses in the league, actually give up the 16th-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends. With Gronk's price dipping all the way to $5,100, he makes an excellent play this week at tight end.