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Daily Fantasy Football Cash Game Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings Week 11
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The bad news first. Lamar Jackson hasn’t been anywhere close to what we saw from the electrifying quarterback in 2019. There’s been a steep drop-off this season in the passing yards even though the efficiency has been relatively in the same range. The TDs aren’t keeping pace either, though those numbers were definitely due to regress some from what we saw. Where he’s way behind last season is the rushing yards. Last season he was averaging more than 80 yards per game, but this season it’s only around 52. But that’s ticked up to 71/5 yards per game over the last four and this week he gets a bottom-third defense in the Tennessee Titans. It’s also a big-time pace-up matchup with the Titans allowing the second most opponent plays per game, trailing only Seattle. If there’s a breakout spot for Jackson, this looks like it. We aren’t getting him at any kind of huge discount, but the price has dropped since the beginning of the season.
Since taking over for Tyros Taylor in Week 2, Herbert has been nothing short of fantastic from a fantasy perspective. In fact, in that time span he ranks as QB5 in raw fantasy scoring behind only Murray, Allen, Mahomes and Wilson. That’s such an impressive list and is nothing short of amazing considering he wasn’t even the starter Week 1 and it took a punctured lung to get him in there. The accuracy is decent at 67% but he’s getting it done in the red zone through the air with 19 passing touchdowns as well as on the ground with three rushing TDs. This week the Chargers get the garbage Jets who rank 29th overall in defensive DVOA and dead last against the pass. Herbert’s price has come up for good reason, but he’s still very much a play here in a choice matchup.
If looking for a cheaper play, especially on DraftKings the hero story of Alex Smith could be a place to turn. Two years from nearly losing his leg and his life in the brutal break, he’s back under center for the Redskins and looked every bit the guy we knew back when. Playing from behind against the Lions in Week 10, Smith attempted 55 passes though didn’t record a touchdown. But in his two games since taking over Kyle Allen, Smith has thrown for an average of 357 yards, completing passes at a 71% rate. The Bengals rank 29th against the pass this season and are the third-worst defense overall. On DraftKings, where every dollar counts this represents a nice way to save and pay up at other positions.
Christian McCaffrey FD 10000 DK 9400
Proj Points FD - 25.16 DK - 29.09
Dalvin Cook FD 10500 DK 9000
Proj Points FD - 25.17 DK - 26.62
With a number of cheap options on the table this week, our lineup optimizer is very clear about wanting at least one of these high priced running backs. It gives the slight nod to Christian McCaffrey, who is cheaper with a slightly longer track record, though obviously it's a little early in the week to say for sure that he's going to come back this week. Dalvin Cook continues to have off-the-charts usage, tallying 34 total opportunities against the Bears on Monday night. It's a great match-up with the hapless Cowboys, and he's a fantastic consolation prize if McCaffrey isn't available again.
UPDATE: McCaffrey has been ruled out for week 11, meaning Cook is the obvious pay-up option. We do not recommend playing Mike Davis after last week's stinker, especially at advanced prices.
Kalen Ballage FD 5800 DK 5600
Proj Points FD - 18.77 DK - 20.66
The Chargers seem to have found the horse they'd like to ride in Kalen Ballage, who tallied 102 yards on 24 opportunities even as LA trailed Miami last week. This week the Chargers are nearly double-digit favorites against the Jets, and Ballage should be penciled in for 20+ touches once again. The Jets have been tough against the run, but there should be enough opportunity on the ground and in the air for Ballage to get there.
J.D. McKissic FD 5600 DK 5200
Proj Points FD - 16.14 DK - 19.86
We were a stone's throw away from running McKissic in cash last week, before news of the weather in Green Bay moved him out of our cash game lineups in favor of chalk option Aaron Jones. Woops! McKissic had 23 opportunities against the Lions, and while he turned those into just 49 all-purpose yards, you'd have to think that will be on the lower end of what we can expect from him going forward. It's a phenomenal match-up with Cinci and their 30th ranked defense, and we're expecting big things from McKissic in PPR formats in particular.
Also considered: Damien Harris, Salvon Ahmed, and DeAndre Swift. There are a number of playable cheap RB right now.
DaVante Adams FD 9500 DK 8600
Proj Points FD - 19.27 DK - 23.45
Wind, Schmind. In Week 10, facing huge gusts in Green Bay with an over/under that dropped considerably from the open because of weather concerns, Adams was his typical target monster self. He got 12 looks, hauling in eight passes for 66 yards and a touchdown. He also had another one called back. This is the elite wide receiver in the game and is just too tough to fade on DraftKings especially with the full PPR scoring. Considering some of the discounts we might be getting at running back, I think Adams is a lock in cash games on DK.
Diontae Johnson FD 6400 DK 5900
Proj Points FD - 13.04 DK - 15.87
Chase Claypool FD 6400 DK 6100
Proj Points FD - 14.17 DK - 16.99
Juju Smith-Schuster FD 6500 DK 6400
Proj Points FD - 13.71 DK - 16.88
The Steelers rank 9th-overall in passing attempts per game this season which doesn’t sound all that great except all the teams above them on the list (except Tampa Bay) totally stink and are usually playing from behind. Yet the Steelers are 9-0 on the season. They are just committed to the pass. While none of these guys are among the leaders in targets this season, the game against a weak Cincy pass defense, all three saw double-digit looks through the air. The week before against Dallas, it was much of the same with both Johnson and Claypool seeing 10+ targets.
Because there are bunch of proverbial mouths to feed here, *guessing* at peak games fro any one or two of the three could be risky in cash games. But they are playing a Jacksonville defense whose secondary allows the most yards per passing attempt this season. The Steelers group, which has shown a propensity for it this season, could be in for some big plays this week.
And sure, both Claypool and Johnson have one-target games in their not-to-distant past. That’s a bit concerning for sure. I suggest taking an approach in which you rotate some of the ownership among this group with the assumption that there are some big games in here.
Some Cheap Guys
K.J. Hamler FD 5200 DK 3600
Proj Points FD - 9.43 DK - 11.5
Chris Conley FD 4900 DK 3000
Proj Points FD - 8.62 DK - 10.33
Both Hamler and Conley are coming cheap on DraftKings and could have some solid floors at near (or total) punt prices. Hamler is looking at back-to-back ten target weeks with an average 5/63 line. That’s plenty of production at this price and even against a tougher Miami team think he’s established himself as the #2 option in Denver.
Meanwhile, Conley is coming off his own back-to-back eight target weeks with Luton under center. A new quarterback starting to hone in on receivers is a good sign and he’s coming at the bare minimum on DraftKings. It’s speculative for sure, but he played the second-most WR snaps for Jacksonville last week and is only one target behind DJ Chark in that stretch.
Hayden Hurst FD 5500 DK 4400
Proj Points FD - 10.08 DK - 12.45
Hurst has finally stepped into the role than many forecasted for him going into the season, with 7-8 targets in each of his last three games. He's been steadily in the 50-60 yards a game range for most of the season, and his three touchdowns on the year speak to his presence in red zone packages. Is he an All-Pro? No. But tight end is bad enough that you'll take consistent production at a cheap price and like it, thank you very much.
Mark Andrews FD 6500 DK 4900
Proj Points FD - 11.88 DK - 14.32
I'm not sure I actually advocate for paying up for Andrews on FanDuel, but it is at least interesting on DraftKings. Andrews has, at times, been worthy of prices even higher than these, and the Ravens' passing struggles have certainly hit his fantasy value this year. But we're seeing signs of life, as Andrews turned his 9 targets in week 10 into 7 catches for 61 yards. We know he's the first option in passing packages in the red zone, with multiple 2 touchdown games this season. It's a perfectly fine match-up with Tennessee's bad pass defense, and I'd ultimately be fine with Andrews in any format.
Also considered: Logan Thomas, understanding that yes, this is once again a tough week for tight ends.
Defense / Special Teams
Steelers FD 5000 DK 4600
Proj Points FD - 9.38 DK - 9.38
Our system has been pushing to play the Steelers defense for almost the whole season, and it's easy to see why. They have 12.5% more sacks than second place Tampa Bay this season, are second in the league in picks, and have held opposing passers to a ridiculous 56.2% completion rate. That's almost 5% better than second place! This week they'll take on the floundering Jags, piloted by Jake Luton. It's an embarrassing mismatch, and you'd be right to fear for Luton's life.
Football Team FD 4100 DK 2900
Proj Points FD - 6.61 DK - 6.61
The Football Team makes another appearance! They've been a great cheap pivot from the Steelers this season, and are once again under-priced on DraftKings. The Football Team is fifth in the league in sacks this season, and they're in a great spot against against the Bengals here. Burrow has taken 32 sacks this season, meaning that the teams playing the Bengals would have the second highest sacks of any team in the league. If you don't have the money for the Steelers, Washington is absolutely worth a play.
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