DFS Three And Out 2021 week 11
Howdy friends. Welcome back to the DFS Tournament Three And Out. In fact, welcome back to a special "Welcome-Back Edition" of the column. This week, I've four three players returning from various circumstance. Three of them I'm interested in playing in my GPP Tournament lineups this week. ... And one I'm not.
Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers ($5,100 on DraftKings; $7,500 on FanDuel)
Just days after being re-signed by his former team, Newton passed and rushed for a score in limited snaps against the Cardinals. Asked later how much of the Panthers' playbook he knew Sunday, Newton respond "two touchdowns' worth. ..." It was a fantastic return. It's also safe to assume he'll know more of the playbook this week. But even if they just stick with a narrower band of the offense to suit Cam's skills, I'm with ESPN.com's Matt Bowen, who is "betting on the designed rush attempts and the high-percentage throws in Joe Brady's offensive system." Like the rest of the world, I'm not sure Cam can still throw the deep ball. But assuming the Panthers can get into scoring position -- not an unreasonable expectation if they're leaning heavily Christian McCaffrey to get them there, it's hard to stop Newton in that sprint-out concept in close. As Bowen characterized it, "a man coverage beater that gives the quarterback a quick, one-to-two read. See it, throw it." I'd like him to jump into the fray at a lower cost on FanDuel (more like that DraftKings pricing), but the Football Team allows more points per game to the quarterback position than any other team and the price is by no means prohibitive. ... On caveat: Make sure he's starting (and I'll be shocked if he's not) before you lock him in.
Joe Burrow, QB Cincinnati Bengals ($6,600 on DraftKings; $7,400 on FanDuel)
Burrow doesn't just return from the bye, he returns from the bye coming off a lousy outing. Burrow scored a season-worst 12 fantasy points against the Browns in Week 9. On Sunday, he heads to Vegas, where the Raiders will welcome him back from the bye week. As FantasyPros' Pat Fitzmaurice pointed out, "The Raiders' defense was a tonic for Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes, who had thrown only two TD passes over a three-game stretch before shredding the Las Vegas defense for 406 yards and five TDs in Week 10." The Raiders defense got off to a solid start this season, but ESPN.com's Tristan Cockroft points out their 385.5 average yards allowed the past five weeks is the league's third-most behind only the New York Jets (472.5) and Atlanta Falcons (388.0), and during that same time span this defense has surrendered a league-worst 11 passing touchdowns. Remember, Burrow had tossed 20 touchdown passes in his first eight games before being held without a score by the Browns. He had four two-TD outings and four three-touchdown games. He scored at least 20 fantasy points every week but one prior to the clinker in Cleveland -- including a 31-point outing against the Ravens in Week 7. Beyond all that, ESPN's Al Zeidenfeld notes that even though he's not totally comfortable with Burrow's price this week, the QB "remains a fantastic tournament play given a controlled funnel of receiving options with which to stack."
A.J. Brown, WR, Tennessee Titans ($7,700 on DraftKings; $7,200 on FanDuel)
I don't have to tell those of you invested in Brown in your season-long leagues what a rollercoaster ride this campaign has been for the talented wideout. But I'm here to welcome him back -- in advance -- from a miserable two-game stretch. In fact, Brown is coming off a pair of single-digit fantasy outings. But those games came against Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey (five catches on 11 targets) and Saints shutdown corner Marshon Lattimore (one catch on four targets). Brown gets a better matchup this week. Houston is back from its bye week, but as ESPN's Mike Clay suggests, it's hard to imagine that major improvements were made to a pass defense that has allowed the third-most fantasy points to perimeter receivers this season, including the most over the past month. Houston is middle of the pack in overall fantasy points to the position, but has been worse as of late, allowing the second-most over the past month. Fitzmaurice also pointed Brown has made a habit of destroying the Texans since entering the league in 2019. In four career games against Houston, he's had 27 catches for 447 yards and five touchdown.
David Montgomery, RB, Chicago Bears ($5,500 on DraftKings; $6,800 on FanDuel)
I'd like to welcome Montgomery back from his bye. Beyond that? Well. ... To be fair, Montgomery looked great in his first game back from injured reserve in Week 9. But his offense did not and even with a reasonable workload, the Steelers limited him to 10 fantasy points. Fast forward through the bye and into the Week 11 matchup against the Ravens. As Cockroft suggested, the Bengals might've embarrassed their defense in Baltimore's their final game before the Week 8 bye, but in the Ravens' two games since their week of rest, they've looked like the dominating rushing defense we remember from years past. That rebound is reflected in the performances of the lead backs in the two games since, as they held Dalvin Cook to 15 points (in Week 9) and Myles Gaskin to 5 points (in Week 10). That's a combined 20 PPR fantasy points on 36 total touches, with Cockroft noting the duo was stuffed at or behind the line of scrimmage on 6-of-31 rushing attempts. It's hard to see the tournament upside for Montgomery playing in this offense -- even with Matt Nagy and his staff having the benefit of an off week to dial this unit in.