Afternoon Slate Pays and Fades DSF wk5

By Jen Ryan
Jen Ryan Playing smaller slates in daily fantasy can are challenging and rewarding. When focusing in on a smaller player pool, the lines between GPP lineups and cash lineups blur. A strong core is necessary to keep with the field and there is little room to be super-contrarian, but it is that contrarian play at one or two positions that usually cashes. This afternoon we have a five game slate with a ton of options. Here are my pays and fades for each game. *Pricing reflects DraftKings

Seattle Seahawks @ Los Angeles Rams, 4:05PM Sunday

Pay: Todd Gurley - $8,000 You have to pay up for one of the running backs on this slate, and Ezekiel Elliott ($8,800) and Kareem Hunt ($8,600) would cost you more than Gurley this week. He can easily outscore both of them at home against a Seahawks defense that is a former shell of itself. Through four games he has 86 carries and 29 targets. The volume makes him worth every penny.

Fade: Doug Baldwin - $7,000 The Seattle offense is a completely different team on the road. This game is likely a low scoring affair and with Baldwin’s groin still not 100% he is an easy fade as the fourth-highest priced receiver on the slate.

Baltimore Ravens @ Oakland Raiders, 4:05PM Sunday

Pay: Marshawn Lynch - $5,100 This feels like a game where, at home in front of the home crowd, the Raiders will look to minimize any risk associated with starting an inexperienced back up in E.J. Manuel. The best way to do that is lean on the run game, and Lynch’s price allows for paying up at other positions. He hasn’t gotten off to a great start this year, but at home against the Ravens 25th-ranked rush defense is the perfect environment for him to have that overdue big day.

Fade: Michael Crabtree - $6,400 I am fading both Oakland receivers on this slate but Crabtree costs more than Cooper ($5,700). It feels reckless to roll the dice on either of them without Derek Carr under center and against a stout Ravens pass defense. Green Bay Packers @ Dallas Cowboys, 4:25PM Sunday

Pay: Aaron Rodgers - $8,100 You’ve read enough about Dez Bryant this week. He will be the highest owned receiver on this five game slate. Rodgers is the most expensive quarterback on this slate by $1,000. Paying up for him will make the rest of the lineup tight, but he is worth it. This game has the highest point total at 53 with the Cowboys laying 2.5 points. This will be a shootout to the end with more throwing than usual for the Packers who will be without Ty Montgomery.

Fade: Ezekiel Elliott - $8,800 There are a handful of useable running backs which allow the fade of the highest priced one. Kareem Hunt and Todd Gurley can easily out score him and give the salary cap a bit of breathing room. Kansas City Chiefs @ Houston Texans, 8:30PM Sunday

Pay: DeAndre Hopkins - $7,600 The connection between Hopkins and Deshaun Watson has translated to Hopkins currently being the WR2 in fantasy football, tied with Antonio Brown with 74 total points. He hit the 100-yard bonus on DraftKings last week and should do that again this week against the Chiefs, who rank 28th against receivers. Receivers like Randall Cobb ($6,700) and Dez Bryant ($6,500) have similar upside, but if I am paying for a player in this game it is Hopkins rather than Kareem Hunt.

Fade: Travis Kelce - $6,000 Chasing Kelce’s huge Week 4 performance is suboptimal so it feels like fading him could be the play. Martellus Bennett ($4,100) and Ben Watson ($3,600) are far less expensive pivots off of him. Minnesota Vikings @ Chicago Bears, 8:30PM Monday

Pay: Latavius Murray - $4,500 Leave your flex spot open for Latavius Murray. If you build a solid core with high priced players, you should be able to squeeze in a running back with 20 touch upside in Murray. He’s a solid running back coming off of a 12 touchdown season who finds himself in the starting role. Jerick McKinnon looms but he has failed to ever seize the job in opportunities given to him.

Fade: Tarik Cohen - $5,300 Tarik Cohen continues to see his salary increase and there is too much against him this week for him to be worth the price. I could be totally wrong here and see Cohen as Mitchel Trubisky’s safety valve this weekend, but The Vikings rush defense will be all over him.

Good luck with this slate and remember to keep that flex spot open for the two late games!