DFS Three And Out 2019 week 11
Three DFS players I'm investing heavily in for tournament (GPP) play this week. ... And one I'm not.
In honor of my FootballDiehards.com colleague Kyle Dvorchak -- a proponent of the "free-square" play, a low-priced prospect in position to outperform expectations, it's a special "Paydown-Palooza" edition of the Three And Out (also, read all Dvorchak's work along with that of Justin Lonero's Digging in the DFS Crates every single week if you're not already). Let's get into it!
Brian Hill, RB, Atlanta Falcons
When Devonta Freeman left last week's win over the Saints with a mid-foot sprain, Hill leapt into the fray immediately becoming the team's bell cow, earning 20 carries for 61 yards and also had a 10-yard touchdown catch. "This team trusts Brian in a big way," head coach Dan Quinn said. Of course, it's not like they have a ton of options here, right? Freeman is out multiple weeks. Backup Ito Smith was placed on injured reserve following a concussion and neck injury. Offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter said rookie running back Qadree Ollison could have a role on offense behind Hill, but his skillset is similar to Hill's while Kenyan Barner seems more capable of chipping in as a receiving option. But Hill brings "big back" size as well as pass-catching skills to the table offering a massive opportunity for volume. Better still, as ESPN's Al Zeidenfeld pointed out, the price ($5,900 on FanDuel; $4,800 on DraftKings) has not been adjusted for either Hill's new role nor for the matchup with Carolina. And that matchup is worth noting. The Panthers have struggled mightily against the run all season, with ESPN.com's Tristan Cockcroft advising his readers no stat being more telling than this: They've allowed an average of 0.92 fantasy points per rushing attempt to running backs in 2019, with that number swelling to 1.20 in the past five weeks alone. In the past three weeks, Derrick Henry, Tevin Coleman and Aaron Jones alone totaled 90.0 PPR fantasy points against these Panthers, doing so on a combined 42 rushing attempts plus targets. In fact, FantasyPros' Mike Tagliere notes there have now been seven running backs who've posted top-15 RB numbers versus the Panthers and another eight running backs who finished in the top-36. You're welcome.
Russell Gage, WR, Atlanta Falcons
While I'm not here to advocate starting both Falcons in the same lineup, I can think of worse things. Gage is most interesting in that as a wide receiver, we rarely get the kind of volume he's seen over the previous two games at such a bargain basement price. How much volume? Since Mohamed Sanu was shipped off to New England, Gage has seen 14 targets over the past two games. In Week 10, he played on 61.4 percent of the Falcons' snaps. According to Zeidenfeld, over the past four weeks, Gage has been second on the Falcons to only Austin Hooper in terms of red zone targets. Zeidenfeld added: "With Hooper's 18.8 percent of red-zone targets now gone (due to injury), there's even less competition for Matt Ryan's throws all over the field -- and especially once the Falcons get close." In addition, as Tagliere points out, the Panthers' slot corner, Javien Elliott, has allowed 19-of-22 passing for 184 yards this year. "If you look over the course of his four-year career," Tagliere added, "he's allowed an 87.5 percent catch-rate, so this is nothing new." But Gage is. And he's a dirt-cheap ($5,300 on FanDuel; $3,300 on DraftKings) piece in a game with an over/under of 49.5.
Deebo Samuel, WR, San Francisco 49ers
Remember Dante Pettis? Kyle Shanahan does. Coming off his latest disappointing outing in Monday's loss to the Seahawks -- in which the wideout had zero catches on three targets, including a big overtime drop -- Shanahan expressed frustration with Pettis' play. "He's had a number of opportunities," Shanahan said. "And I'm one of the guys who believe in him the most. That's why he's here. He's had his opportunities. The more he doesn't take advantage of his opportunities, the less opportunities he gets." So if Pettis is getting fewer chances, who stands to benefit? Hello Deebo! Samuel is coming off of his first career 100-yard game, hauling in eight of 11 targets and taking on a prominent role within the 49ers' passing game after Emmanuel Sanders departed against the Seahawks. Clearly, Samuel, an exciting prospect who has shown flashes throughout the season, is taking advantage of his opportunities; he now has four straight games with at least three catches and should stay involved going forward -- but even more so this week if George Kittle (who boasts a 26 percent target share through Week 9) and Sanders (with a 23 percent target share in two starts for the Niners) remain out. Also, the price ($5,600 on FanDuel; $4,000 on DraftKings) is right. In fact, as Zeidenfeld put it, the price becomes "absurdly cheap" when we factor in the matchup against the Cardinals. Of some concern? If Sanders is out, Samuels could find himself in the crosshairs of Cardinals shutdown corner Patrick Peterson. That said, Peterson has struggled since his return from suspension and he's dealing with a calf injury this week. Get your Deebo on!
Carlos Hyde, RB, Houston Texans
First of all, let me say I take no joy in picking on low-priced running backs, even those who might enjoy reasonable volume. And that was the case for Hyde. ... At least until recently. As Tagliere pointed out, from Week 2 through Week 8, Hyde handled 125 touches while Duke Johnson lagged well behind (with just 51 touches). That changed in Week 9 when Hyde had 19 touches to Johnson's 12 in London -- a game that featured Hyde's fourth fumble this season. Meanwhile, the Texans take on a Ravens defense that's not necessarily the stingiest when it comes to fantasy points allowed to opposing running backs (although still well within the top 10 in that category), but it's also a unit that allows just 77 rushing yards per game. And there's the rub. Hyde, with just six catches this season, is totally reliant on the run. I know, he ran for 160 yards against the Jaguars (8.4 yards per carry) against the Jaguars. But I'll find better price ($6,300 on FanDuel; $4,600 on DraftKings), value and workloads elsewhere (like in Atlanta).