Cost Efficiency Breakdown: DraftKings Week 14

A look into the shrewd DraftKings Week 14 plays in terms of cost efficiency. Who provides the most bang for your buck?

Week 13 was wild, as we all know. The sky-high scoring made it difficult to cash without Cam Newton, a top-tiered wide receiver, and a Steeler or two in the fold. Luckily, my Week 13 cash lineup was prepared:

 

 

Sal

DK Pts

Pts/$1K

QB

Cam Newton

7,400

40.1

5.42

RB

David Johnson

3,400

20.0

5.88

RB

Javorius Allen

5,400

38.0

7.04

WR

Odell Beckham Jr

8,900

29.9

3.36

WR

Julio Jones

9,000

8.6

0.96

WR

Doug Baldwin

3,800

26.4

6.95

Flex

DeAngelo Williams

5,600

23.5

4.20

TE

Scott Chandler

2,500

16.1

6.44

D/ST

Kansas City

3,000

17.0

5.67

   

49,000

219.6

 

I surely wasn’t expecting Julio Jones to be the buzzkill, but no worries: most of my cash lineups squeezed through the free-for-all just fine. That was thanks to my heavy exposure to the guys above, plus a handful of Ryan Fitzpatrick/Eric Decker and Ben Roethlisberger/Antonio Brown stacks.

Week 14’s pricing is noticeably tighter – and David Johnson’s miniscule salary was hidden in a Thursday game – but there’s plenty of value on the board. Here’s a Week 14 lineup rooted in cost efficiency. It’ll be a little closer to a GPP structure as a result, since we’re chasing cheaper guys in a few specific areas. But usage and floor remain at the root of the player selection, so this is lineup is ideal for cash contests, double-ups, and triple-ups.

QUARTERBACK

 

Sal

DK Pts

Pts/$1K

H-Value

Ryan Fitzpatrick

5,400

21.34

3.952

36.513

Ben Roethlisberger

6,800

24.39

3.587

35.432

Tyrod Taylor

5,400

20.83

3.858

35.217

Jameis Winston

5,500

20.82

3.785

34.537

Blaine Gabbert

5,100

19.67

3.857

34.208

Johnny Manziel

5,000

19.27

3.854

33.831

Blake Bortles

6,000

21.13

3.521

32.370

Matthew Stafford

5,800

20.53

3.539

32.067

The Cash Play

For whatever reason, Ryan Fitzpatrick’s ($5,400) salary has yet to truly catch up with his production. The Jets re throwing the ball considerably more often than most had expected, and with two excellent outside targets, Fitzpatrick has maximized his moderate ability. Both Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker are certified touchdown machines, and both are schemed open enough to generate more-than-acceptable yardage totals. Hence, Fitzpatrick has topped 28 points in each of his last two starts and stands as the top QB value play of the week. The Titans “boast” some pretty atrocious cornerback play to defend those wideouts, so Fitzpatrick failing to reach 16.2 DraftKings points would be a massive upset.

…and cash considerations

I’m all over the Steelers-Bengals passing game, so both Ben Roethlisberger ($6,800) and Andy Dalton ($6,600) are squarely in play. No one offers the combination of offensive pace and passing volume that Roethlisberger does, so he’s always a high-floor guy. And Dalton carries a strong chance of being the fourth QB in five games to top 300 yards against the Steelers. I ultimately prefer Roethlisberger of the two – his ceiling is sky-high in that high-impact, downfield-oriented offense – but both figure to reach cash value… The Jaguars’ free-slinging ways have Blake Bortles ($6,000) pegged for solid yardage and touchdown projections against the toothless Colts. Even Vontae Davis was picked on mercilessly by Roethlisberger last week, and only two teams have allowed more raw passing yardage on the year.

GPP Plays

Jameis Winston ($5,500) will be a popular play this week, and rightfully so – the Saints field a D-II defense that’s recently allowed QB1 lines to Kirk Cousins and Marcus Mariota. But the Buccaneers’ is a decidedly run-oriented offense, so Winston looks more like a tournament gamble on a bevy of touchdowns… Game flow could work against Alex Smith ($5,100) and the Kansas City passing game, but if not, he deserves a long GPP look. He’s been among the league’s most efficient passers of late, and the Chargers struggle to contain passing games that don’t bury them early.

RUNNING BACK

 

Sal

DK Pts

Pts/$1K

H-Value

Shaun Draughn

4,800

18.36

3.825

32.778

DeAngelo Williams

6,000

20.78

3.463

31.575

Javorius Allen

5,300

18.73

3.535

30.596

James Starks

4,300

14.41

3.352

25.450

T.J. Yeldon

4,900

15.48

3.159

24.855

LeSean McCoy

6,100

17.89

2.933

24.809

Giovani Bernard

4,100

12.77

3.114

22.256

Frank Gore

4,300

13.08

3.043

22.015

Darren McFadden

5,000

14.27

2.855

21.574

Ronnie Hillman

4,700

13.48

2.868

21.059

Devonta Freeman

7,700

17.95

2.331

19.753

Thomas Rawls

5,800

14.72

2.538

19.478

Theo Riddick

3,600

10.62

2.950

19.227

The Cash Plays

With Karlos Williams sidelined, LeSean McCoy ($6,100) again projects to an overwhelming workload for Buffalo. In fact, last week's 21 touches look like his floor – McCoy surprisingly failed to catch a pass after snagging 14 over the previous three games. With a stranglehold on the offense and a robust 5.1 yards per rush over his last five, McCoy is a plug-and-play cash choice... The same goes for Thomas Rawls ($5,800), who’s averaged 25.3 touches over his last three despite a rejuvenated Seattle passing game taking hold. Rawls is running spectacularly and dominates the offense near the goal line, so there’s little not to like. And the Seahawks’ matchup with the falling-apart Ravens suggests a very strong game script for Rawls… Only three teams allow more DraftKings points to RBs than the Falcons, so there’s a strong floor for Jonathan Stewart ($5,800), as usual. But Stewart’s ceiling could be finally coming to fruition. The Panthers’ short-yardage opportunities have evened a bit over the last four weeks, with Stewart taking 10 rushes from inside the 10 compared to Cam Newton’s six. Stewart finally shapes up as a solid touchdown threat in a very favorable rushing matchup.

…and cash considerations

The Saints can’t stop anybody – they’ve recently allowed big rushing games to Antonio Andrews and Alfred Blue – so Doug Martin ($6,100) brings solid 3x value to the table. He brings some pause due to his relative lack of passing game and short-yardage work, so he’s not the ultra-safe play he seems to be. But you have to like his odds to reach the 100-yard bonus, so his floor is stronger than those of most two-down backs… Speaking of the red zone, it’s hard to beat DeAngelo Williams’ ($6,000) Week 14 outlook. Over the last four games, he’s seen 12 of the Steelers’ 16 short-yardage rushes (most in the league) and turned three of them into touchdowns (tied atop the league). Still, this is a fairly steep cash game investment for a back in such a pass-happy offense, especially one expected to spend the game in neutral or negative game script… Against all odds, Shaun Draughn ($4,800) has emerged as a usable fantasy contributor. The mascot for low-impact consistency has tallied 20, 20, 20, and 18 touches in four games as starter, generating 96, 77, 86, and 86 scrimmage yards. Adrian Peterson he’s not, but he’s caught 22 passes over that span from checkdown artist Blaine Gabbert.

GPP Plays

C.J. Anderson is unlikely to suit up, so Ronnie Hillman ($4,700) should see a clear starter’s workload this week. Hillman’s not overly exciting – he’s topped 60 scrimmage yards just once in his last six games. But this salary is still too low for a featured back facing the Raiders, who have allowed 5.22 yards and six ground TDs over the last five weeks (both league-worsts)… The Steelers have been stout against the run for most of the year, but Jeremy Hill ($4,600) is trending up majorly; his 18.4-point GPP marker is well within play. Hill has outcarried Giovani Bernard 51-21 and scored three short touchdowns over the last three weeks. If the Bengals can control game flow and/or crack the red zone regularly, Hill could feast… There’s no one left for LeGarrette Blount ($4,800) to share early-down work with in New England, and it’s surprising his numbers haven’t reflected that opportunity. Still, his salary is golden for such a prominent member of a high-pace offense, and his ownership is likely to plummet after three straight weeks of single-digit scoring. If the Patriots get back on track and hammer the Texans, Blount could be the top beneficiary… Don’t jump to conclusions yet on Mark Ingram’s injury – C.J. Spiller ($3,000) doesn’t look very stable in the Saints’ plans. But he’s a minimum-salary guy, needing just 12-15 points to hold value in your tournament lineup. The Saints live, eat, and get their mail in catch-up mode, and a five-reception day for Spiller would leave him just 5-10 carries from reaching his marker.

WIDE RECEIVER

 

Sal

DK Pts

Pts/$1K

H-Value

Doug Baldwin

4,500

25.09

5.575

55.842

Antonio Brown

8,900

32.36

3.636

41.367

Brian Hartline

3,700

14.88

4.023

31.041

Sammy Watkins

6,100

20.65

3.386

30.777

Jeremy Maclin

5,500

19.07

3.467

30.278

Anquan Boldin

4,000

15.13

3.783

29.431

Kamar Aiken

4,600

15.65

3.402

26.917

Danny Amendola

5,200

16.81

3.232

26.502

Jarvis Landry

6,300

18.93

3.006

26.157

Cecil Shorts

3,600

12.96

3.599

25.909

Odell Beckham Jr

9,100

23.86

2.622

25.611

Golden Tate

4,500

14.81

3.291

25.334

Martavis Bryant

5,700

16.72

2.934

23.991

Markus Wheaton

3,600

11.95

3.320

22.956

Brandon Marshall

7,600

19.61

2.580

22.847

DeSean Jackson

4,800

14.21

2.960

22.310

Vincent Jackson

4,500

13.41

2.980

21.824

The Cash Plays

The Giants are apparently done experimenting with their “keep the ball away from Odell Beckham Jr ($9,100) for long stretches” scheme, so he’s again entrenched as a weekly top-three option. He hasn’t been the most efficient producer, but on the docket is a floundering Miami defense that’s allowed 8.28 yards per catch and 13 TDs over its last six games. Like Julio Jones, Beckham often excels even with a middling catch rate and very little red zone usage. He’s making huge plays all over the field and looks like a lock for a sixth straight 100-yard game, so 5-6 catches and a touchdown are likely all he’ll need to return cash value… Brandon Marshall ($7,600) is pricey, but he’s among the more consistently high-impact WRs on the board. He’s drawn 10+ targets in five of his last six as Ryan Fitzpatrick has just swarmed his stud wideouts with the ball. Marshall could actually drop 36% of his production over the last two games and still hold his 3x marker… I don’t normally recommend 35-year-old receivers catching the ball from Blaine Gabbert, but Anquan Boldin ($4,000) offers too much value to ignore as a solid punt. He’ll only need a line of 6-60 to reach his sweet spot, and that’s a perfectly reasonable expectation for a clear target hog. The Browns’ Joe Haden-less secondary has been hopeless lately, and slot cornerback K’Waun Williams has been a whipping boy.

…and cash considerations

Antonio Brown ($8,900) is never a bad play – his massive role and slot-type abilities give him a solid floor on any given week. His star fades a bit against the Bengals’ elite secondary, as Brown was held to a 6-47-1 line in their Week 8 meeting. Still, the absence of Pacman Jones gives us reason to expect a week near his more reasonable top-three expectation. It’s an expensive dice roll, but an Antonio Brown roll is performed with loaded dice… Across the field, A.J. Green ($7,900) is back in our WR1 good graces. He’ll need 23.7 points to cash, but this Steelers secondary is one of the league’s poorest, so it’s fair to expect one of his best 2015 games. Green’s upside has been limited by Tyler Eifert’s red zone prowess, but he could easily reach his mark on catches and yardage alone… Danny Amendola ($5,200) keeps chugging along as the low-risk, low-impact checkdown target that Tom Brady needs. He’s seen 11+ targets in all three games since Julian Edelman’s injury, including 12 in a partial Week 11. He doesn’t threaten for many big plays or touchdowns, but Amendola provides strong PPR value and is priced near his floor.

GPP Plays

It’s another weekend, so someone has to destroy the Saints through the air. The Buccaneers are a decidedly run-first team, but it’s easy to project Jameis Winston & Co. to post usable GPP numbers. Take your pick between Vincent Jackson ($4,500), who’s averaging 20 yards per catch over his last three games, and Mike Evans ($7,200), who’s seeing a slight target advantage and provides more 4x-value potential. You want at least one on your tournament roster – Jackson is much cheaper and safer (and actually a decent cash play), while Evans is the better stab at taking down a large contest. A superstack of both guys could pay off handsomely, as well… You never want to completely fade a guy like Julio Jones ($8,900), but plenty of owners will be running scared from Defensive Player of the Year candidate Josh Norman. Norman’s a shutdown force for sure, but with Jones likely to be owned in less than 5% of contests, this is a rare opportunity to deploy Jones as a contrarian play. He’s good, too, after all… Brian Hartline ($3,700) is still a thing, and he’s actually topped 13 DraftKings points in each of his last four games. Hartline doesn’t generate much yardage, but he doesn’t need it to reach his low 14.8-point GPP marker. A solid possession-receiver line of 7-78 would be enough to make him a solid punt, and it’s worth noting that he’s dominated the team’s red zone targets of late… Cecil Shorts ($3,600) has taken the reins of the Texans No. 2 job, and the team is getting creative in feeding him the ball. He’s seen 26 targets in his four games back from injury, to go along with eight rushes and a red zone TD over that span. Hartline and Boldin make for better punts, but Shorts won’t draw any ownership to speak of.

TIGHT END

 

Sal

DK Pts

Pts/$1K

H-Value

Delanie Walker

5,600

18.18

3.247

27.688

Jacob Tamme

3,400

12.64

3.718

26.434

Jordan Reed

5,100

14.43

2.829

21.489

Scott Chandler

3,800

11.33

2.982

20.073

Antonio Gates

4,600

12.41

2.698

19.008

Charles Clay

3,500

9.93

2.837

17.875

Richard Rodgers

3,900

10.59

2.715

17.671

Greg Olsen

6,900

15.14

2.194

17.078

Travis Kelce

4,700

11.66

2.482

16.952

Tyler Eifert

5,600

12.88

2.300

16.512

Julius Thomas

4,200

10.62

2.528

16.479

The cash play

As usual, we’re looking at a muddied group of upper-tier options, and most of them are priced a bit beyond their value. Thankfully, a few low-salary options are in place that project to approach the production of Tyler Eifert, Jordan Reed, etc. The list opens with Jacob Tamme ($3,400), who remains underpriced despite a legitimate stake in the passing game. In four games without Leonard Hankerson available, Tamme has drawn 19% of Falcons targets – including five in the red zone. The steady veteran’s 75% catch rate over that span gives him an acceptable cash game floor, with easy 4x upside for tournament use.

…and cash consideration

Scott Chandler ($3,800) isn’t Rob Gronkowski, but he’s locked into a semi-prominent offensive role and draws a ton of attention near the goal line. In two games since Gronkowski’s injury, Chandler has seen 18 targets and caught two short touchdowns; it appears that’s a role the Patriots hand to whomever is lined up on the end of the line. He’s as strong of a TD dice roll as anyone, and with the added benefit of every-down work in a high-paced offense that loves to use its TEs. DraftKings has kept Chandler’s price considerably low, so he remains a top-flight value play… As the Titans’ default No. 1 receiver, Delanie Walker ($5,600) hasn’t disappointed. He’s hit 15 DraftKings points in four of his last five games and five of eight, drawing nearly 30% of team targets along the way. He’s expensive, but you’re buying a high floor and arguably the top ceiling in a Gronkowski-less week…

GPP Plays

Though he’ll be very highly owned, Austin Seferian-Jenkins ($2,700) is a fair punt in his second game back. No team has allowed more DraftKings points to TEs than the Saints, so he could actually leapfrog Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson as the top stacking target… The Steelers give up TD passes in chunks and struggle to stay with tight ends, so Tyler Eifert ($5,600) could easily erupt this week. He’s practiced in full this week and looks poised to build on his breakout season, which has seen him develop as Andy Dalton’s preferred target near the goal line.

DEFENSIVE THOUGHTS


Cash Plays

The Seahawks ($3,500) stand as the week’s top play, with the pleasure of teeing off on either Matt Schaub or Jimmy Clausen. Schaub threw four interceptions over his two starts, and his offense managed just 13 points against an imploding Dolphins defense. The Legion of Boom isn’t the shutdown guarantee it once was, but this looks unfair… Even without Justin Houston, Kansas City ($3,200) posted the week’s best defensive total. With three INTs and four sacks of Derek Carr, they notched 17 points and have now reached double digits in eight of its 12 games thus far. The Chargers offense has slowed considerably, and their last four opposing defenses have averaged 13.5 points.

GPP Plays

The “anyone facing the Rams” principle kicks in for the Lions ($2,700) this week. With no punch whatsoever in the passing game and Todd Gurley struggling against what look like 11-man fronts, the Rams simply can’t get off the ground at all. Opposing D/ST units are capitalizing, averaging 10.3 against them over the last four weeks, and a talented Lions pass rush could break them: Detroit has churned out 20 sacks over its last six games… The Bills ($2,800) could feast on an Eagles offense that still looks stuck in the mud, their upset over New England notwithstanding. Sam Bradford and Co. had little hand in the Eagles win, and only six teams have coughed up more turnovers.