Welcome to Week 9 of the NFL season. I can’t even believe we’re here already and almost seeing double digits, so it’s time to ramp this puppy up. We only have a couple more weeks left here to secure the bag, and it would be nice to set aside some money with the holidays approaching. I’m just as much of a jolly ol’ bastard as the next, and I have no shame in my game. You can judge me. That’s fine. I don’t care. We don’t have to like me the person as much as we have to like me, the fantasy analyst, but yeah, I want to put my Christmas tree up! I like things that make me happy, and Christmas is one of them, so kick you’re pumpkins and turkeys to the curb. I do what I want here.
What also makes me happy is money. So, I treat my DFS lineups the same way. If I want to roll out Jalen Hurts every week, right or wrong, and Keenan Allen again to hurt me twice, then sue me. Here at Club Fantasy, we play Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” in November, and we like it that way. Just like we also like to go back to the well with players two weeks in a row, that’s a bit of a common theme here this week because sometimes the process was right, and it was there, but we just tried to deliver on it too early.
Now that I probably lost a couple of hundred followers with this intro, plus weeded out all of the grinches of the world and cut the dead weight before I’m even finished talking, I’ll give the rest of you still with us some secrets for the week. By secrets, I actually just mean my whole article that they probably just skipped and read anyway but just know I love you all the most who stick out reading these things every week with me and not just use me for the spicy value picks. I have been getting a lot of you sending me winning lineups where we’ve helped you win some serious keeesh, and I accept tips and donations in the form of my Venmo @kyra… just kidding.
If you’re winning, then I’m winning and look forward to seeing you back here reading with me every week until the cows come home in Week 18. It’s a marathon and not a sprint, people, so if you haven’t won yet or struck gold, then don’t be discouraged because you are one of many. On any given Sunday that can change and you will be right back on track to improving as a DFS player, and I will always be happy to help. Enough of the sentimental crap, though. I can’t let it distract us, so it’s time to go kash out!
Lamar Jackson (Draftkings: $7,300 / Fanduel: $8,300)
Um, what? Lamar Jackson is just way too cheap for him not to be an automatic add into our lineup this week. It’s borderline criminal to see him as the 5th highest-priced quarterback on the slate over at Draftkings. I don’t even know how to write about someone of Lamar’s caliber because he should never be in this article, but here we are. This shouldn’t take too much convincing.
Remember Cooper Rush last week? Yeah, that was weird, but now it’s Lamar Jackson versus the Minnesota Vikings who are without star pass-rusher Danielle Hunter and top corner, which seems like a stretch to say anymore, but Patrick Peterson is out too. The Vikings are looking dated back to last year, whose secondary couldn’t stop any bleeding from opposing offenses, and Lamar has been playing phenomenal football. I know we think of Lamar as taking this run-heavy approach to his game, but he’s actually been a lot more well-balanced this year. Maybe that has to do with their depleted running back corps, but whatever, we don’t care because it’s working.
Most weeks, his throwing attempts are up over 30+ and around league average, so to hell with those, he’s a running back narratives. Lamar has been playing like the true dual-threat he is, and I love me some Jackson/Brown stacks this week. I think he can easily blow this week up and break the slate, so you better not miss out on the opportunity while it is presented to us.
Joe Burrow (Draftkings: $6,800 / Fanduel: $7,600)
Tiger King Joe Burrow has really come on over these last few weeks. We’ve watched him kick it up a notch like Emeril Lagasse. If you guys even remember that guy when he would say, “let’s add a little bit of garlic” and then put like a pound of garlic into his dish… that’s Joe Burrow but with touchdowns.
He’s thrown for at least two touchdowns in every game so far this season and really hammered it on over the last three weeks, putting up three touchdowns a game. The man is on fire, and it should only keep heating up for him this week versus the Cleveland Browns, who have a pass funneled defense.
The Browns have allowed 17 passing touchdowns this season, and that’s tied for 29th worst in the NFL. If the Bengals want to win this game, it will have to be done through the air because Cleveland’s front-7 have just owned opposing running backs. They have allowed the third-least rushing yards per game and are tied for eight least rushing touchdowns. I don’t want to spend too much time talking about Cleveland run defense when I’m talking Joe Burrow, but, like, they are good so let’s just sum it up with that.
So back to Smokin’ Joe. Last year, facing Cleveland in his rookie season, Burrow put up some damn good numbers where he threw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns in both matchups. The Bengals have only got better after adding rookie sensation Ja’Marr Chase, and they are an incredible stack this week at a value. Burrow feels like a safe play this week with a lot of upside to have a multi-touchdown week yet again.
Honorable Mention: Jalen Hurts (Draftkings: $6,700 / Fanduel: $7,800)
Deep Sea Dive: Tua Tagovailoa (Draftkings: $5,800 / Fanduel: $7,300)
Aaron Jones (Draftkings: $7,200 / Fanduel: $8,500)
I know these two running backs I’m about to talk about aren’t necessarily cheap by any means, but by terms of value, I need you looking to them here. We might get a second week in a row of more of the same outcome for Aaron Jones. COVID is just dismantling the Green Bay Packers offense, but it’s giving Aaron Jones a ton of opportunity to smash each week, being a beneficiary of their shortcomings.
We have no Aaron Rodgers this week, so bring on the Jordan Love show, and that can possibly lead to an increase in the run game and some safety valve check downs to Aaron Jones as well. It wouldn’t surprise me to see Jones get 25+ touches in this game, and volume is king in fantasy football. Not to forget to mention the matchup was good regardless of the situation. The Kansas City Chiefs have been a significant letdown so far this season, and Green Bays’ defense is not a slouch. The Packers can easily control this game on the ground with Jones and stop shockingly a turnover machine in Patrick Mahomes this season.
Can I eat my words with that statement? Oh, for sure. But that is the narrative I’m rolling with that the game probably won’t get away from the Packers despite not having Aaron Rodgers under center. Kansas City has allowed the 13th-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs, and there’s no reason Jones won’t produce this week and be a safe value play for you.
Ezekiel Elliot (Draftkings: $7,000 / Fanduel: $8,200)
Yeah, this feels like cheating putting both Aaron Jones and Ezekiel Elliot into my value plays, but what the hell, man, they are a value price! If DraftKings and FanDuel want to put Ezekiel Elliot as the 7th and 6th highest priced running back on the slate, then I’m going to take advantage of it, and you should too.
Denver’s front-7 has become significantly worse throughout the season due to injury and now they lose Von Miller to the Los Angeles Rams, so let’s be real people. Zeke is going to be rolling out the feed me gesture all Sunday. They are heavily favorited to beat the Denver Broncos as 10-point home favorites, and that always bodes well for the run game and even better for one who loves to run the ball anyway as the Cowboys do. It shouldn’t take a ton of convincing to play Ezekiel Elliot because we know he is good and what he is capable of, and there is no reason he shouldn’t produce this week either and shoot for a 20+ fantasy point game. This is the play don’t waste your salary dollars on the Alvin Kamara’s and Joe Mixon’s of the world. Zeke is easy money for us this week.
Honorable Mention: Josh Jacobs (Draftkings: $6,200 / Fanduel: $7,200)
Deep Sea Dive: Devontae Booker (Draftkings: $5,900 / Fanduel: $6,300)
Keenan Allen (Draftkings: $6,700 / Fanduel: $7,000)
People are off the Los Angeles Chargers offense right now, and for good reason. They’ve been pretty meh, and it’s frustrating when you roll out their players and get such bland results, especially when it comes to DFS. But I have been doing this long enough to know that eventually, that is going to break, and I like to get the pieces I think are going to benefit while their rostership is low. So that is Keenan Allen for me this week going up against the Philadelphia Eagles.
I know that wide receivers aren’t someone we target against the Eagles secondary, but that’s not because they are just such a great defense that we need to avoid them. It’s mainly because Darius Slay has shut down star perimeter receivers, and not every team they faced has rolled out multiple star wide receivers to keep producing numbers. That’s more of a Mike Williams problem in this game. We’ve seen it time and time again. Philadelphia gets slashed and gashed in the middle, where you find Keenan Allen to do most of his damage. The game has a pretty decent over/under set at 49.5, and Allen is still holding the lead in targets for this offense. He’s still that dude, and I know it might feel gross depending on him to have a big day, but I think it’s entirely possible that it happens. His price point makes him super affordable, and his floor is safe enough that even if he does more of the same, then it’s not going to kill you. Scared money don’t make no money, and I’m willing to take the semi-risky play in Allen this week.
Brandin Cooks (Draftkings: $6,100 / Fanduel: $6,800)
What more can I say about this pillar of consistency that is Texans wide receiver, Brandin Cooks. This guy, no matter what team he’s played for or quarterback that has thrown him the ball, has found a way to continually produce and put up fantasy points. Has he put up a few duds this season here and there? Yes, of course, but that’s not crazy to think when your starting quarterback is Davis Mills, and you have one of the worst offenses in football.
But hey, guess what?! We get Tyrod Taylor back this week, and I honestly can’t believe I’m even excited to say that, but for Cooks, this bodes well for his fantasy outlook. I know the sample size is small, but we know Taylor is an upgrade, and in his matchups where he was healthy, he fed Cooks the ball. So now we get a great game setup here for Cooks, and he’s still being priced like he isn’t a WR2 with WR1 upside. The Miami Dolphins allow the 4th-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers, and we know Brandin Cooks is going to crush them because the guy just barely has competition for targets. It’s his day to be had.
Honorable Mention: Marquise Brown (Draftkings: $6,000 / Fanduel: $7,700)
Deep Sea Dive: Jerry Jeudy (Draftkings: $5,000 / Fanduel: $5,800)
Mike Gesicki (Draftkings: $4,900 / Fanduel: $6,500)
WE ARE! Big fans of former Nittany Lion Mike Gesicki this week, and I mean big-time fans this week. I have a hard time toggling between Gesicki and Goedert as my favorite tight end plays of the week, but Gesicki has the better matchup if we’re splitting hairs here. The Houston Texans have allowed the 6th-most fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends, and up until last week, where Tyler Higbee made me look like a complete ass hat for suggesting him heavily and not delivering, they were giving up the MOST fantasy points per game to tight ends.
So personally, I strongly see it as they are still the best matchup to target for tight ends in fantasy football. I know we think of Gesicki as a tight end because, well, he is one, but he lines up like a receiver in the slot and out wide on most of his snaps. So he remains to see opportunity in his offense. It also helps that his only other competition for targets other than Jaylen Waddle was DeVante Parker, and he’s recently been placed on injured reserve. The man is going to eat in this game, and it wouldn’t shock me if he comes out of this with the best fantasy finish on the week at the tight end position. Last week was a freakin ugly tight end wasteland with horrific performances from the top-tier guys, but this week we will be humming a different tune, and I’m sure of it.
Dallas Goedert (Draftkings: $4,500 / Fanduel: $6,200)
No way was I going to go through this whole article without talking about a Philadelphia Eagle who has a good matchup this week. So Dallas Goedert it is. And he is actually my favorite play of the week at tight end. Since Zach Ertz was traded to the Arizona Cardinals, Dallas Goedert has gone back-to-back weeks of 70+ yards and 12 targets. He remains a heavy focal point on this offense. That includes a game last week where Jalen Hurts threw the ball only 14 times.
Now, this week he gets an A+ matchup versus the Los Angeles Chargers, who have allowed the 8th-most fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends. Yes, I’m salivating. As the 10th-highest priced tight end on the slate for DraftKings and 6th highest price on Fanduel, give me Goedert all freakin day. The wide receivers in Philly have struggled for the most part regardless of matchup, and it doesn’t get much easier for them here in this game with Los Angeles’s secondary, who is one of the worst matchups for the position. I know that they are without two of their star corners, but honestly, if anything, that will still help a wide receiver-type tight end in Goedert, and this is a smash spot for him at a value.
Honorable Mention: Tyler Conklin (Draftkings: $3,000 / Fanduel: $5,200)
Deep Sea Dive: Albert Okwuegbunam (Draftkings: $2,600 / Fanduel: $4,500)
Arizona Cardinals vs San Francisco 49ers (Draftkings: $3,400 / Fanduel: $4,400)
Dallas Cowboys vs Denver Broncos (Draftkings: $3,300 / Fanduel: $3,900)
Honorable Mention: Green Bay Packers vs Kansas City Chiefs (Draftkings: $2,800 / Fanduel: $3,600)
Deep Sea Dive: San Francisco 49ers vs Arizona Cardinals (Draftkings: $2,800 / Fanduel: $3,500)
Don’t forget to check out our Week 9 DFS Matchup Report before you start your Sunday tinkering with your lineups!