Week 12 marks the week of low-cost running backs and high-priced wide receivers dominating the ownership rates. The Vegas team totals are tepid, the Patriots offense is running of fumes form a health standpoint, and running back injury dominoes continue to fall as we close out November. Filling in for Justin Bonnema this week, Chad Parsons will mirror the format in previous weeks, adding Footballguys H-Value to the typical charts of matchup, salary, and ownership data.
Just like with fades, we’ll never advocate going contrarian for the sake contrarianism. That said, we’ll have to leave our comfort zones a little bit. So be sure to protect your bankrolls and limit how much you invest as a contrarian.
The numbers presented in the tables below are taken from a $2 Thursday night GPP. We can use these exposure percentages to assist our ownership projections for Sunday/Monday GPPs. Doing so increases our accuracy and provides a clearer picture of groupthink—something we’ll almost always try to avoid.
Russell Wilson sticks out like a sore thumb of the bottom rung of ownership. As a top Footballguys projection in terms of H-Value, his 1% ownership is anemic. The Steelers pass defense has been average on the season, but struggled mightily of late, surrendering 372 yards to Johnny Manziel, and 301 yards and four touchdowns to Derek Carr in successive weeks. Colin Kaepernick, the most mobile quarterback to-date on the Pittsburgh schedule, shredded the Steelers for 335 yards and two scores through the air plus by-far a season-high on the ground of 51 yards against Pittsburgh. Russell Wilson, while pinning down his best stack mate for tournments between Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett, and Jimmy Graham is a challenge, deserves a sizeable market share of lineup usage for Week 12.
The running back position is littered with affordable and low-cost options heading into the weekend. Monitor Devonta Freeman's status, but signs as of Friday are Atlanta is preparing to be without Freeman against Minnesota. Tevin Coleman has been pulled on passing downs consistently and is not as much of a power runner, but at $6,200 will deserve some tournament love if Freeman is inactive. Spencer Ware is another 'wait and see' option at $6,100. Charcandrick West is dealing with a balky hamstring and not a high liklihood to play. Ware flashes late in Week 11 in relief of West and has quality lateral agility for a big-bodied back. Buffalo is a slightly positive matchup for running backs on the season, but have struggled of late against Chris Ivory and T.J. Yeldon in recent weeks. Ware would be a quality RB2 for tournaments to mix into lineup creation without West. Finally, Mark Ingram has low ownership considering his stranglehold on the backfield. Tim Hightower soaked up late-game work in the blowout loss last week. Despite their horrid defense, the Saints are just 3.5 point underdogs on the road. Expect a closer game and Mark Ingram's work to bounce back from his abberation of eight touches last week. Ingram had at least 16 touches in each of the previous four games and had at least 14 touches in every game this season.
|Odell Beckham Jr||9100||27.3||NYG@WAS||27.3|
The Giants struggle across the board against the pass, yet DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon are both minimally-owned at home this week. Julian Edelman, Mike Evans, Brandin Cooks, and Marques Colston have all exceled against the Giants in recent weeks. Washington is one of the stronger home-road splits, with Kirk Cousins completing 76% of his passes, two scores per game, and 8.2 yards-per-attempt at home this season. Both Jackson and Garcon are affordable WR3 plays with WR2+ upside. The weapons for Russell Wilson are another attractive tournament pair this week. Tyler Lockett and Doug Baldwin are both sub-1.5% owned and Wilson is a much better quarterback at home with seven touchdowns and a single interception in five home games this season and 9.2 yards-per-attempt. As mentioned in the quarterback section, Wilson himself is minimally-owned and constructing a Wilson-Baldwin, Wilson-Lockett, or Wilson-Graham stack or two for Week 12 is quality diversification. Baldwin has been the more active target throughout the season with more targets than Lockett in 7-of-10 games (22 the last three contests).
Crockett Gillmore and Heath Miller stand out of the low-ownership group as quality tournament options. While Matt Schaub is shaky-at-best as an innate DFS play, he has produced for tight ends in his career with Joel Dreessen, Garrett Graham, and Owen Daniels of note. Gillmore leads Baltimore in red zone targets and by a large margin since Steve Smith's season ended with injury. While the Browns have allowed a low 39 receptions to tight ends on the season, eight touchdowns to tight ends is near the top of the NFL, including five touchdowns between oversized options Tyler Eifert and Troy Niklas in recent weeks. Seattle is stingy against wide receivers, but not so much versus tight ends. Vance McDonald had a career day of 4-65-1 against Seattle last week, Jermaine Gresham found the end zone in Week 10, and off-the-radar options Lance Kendricks and Richard Rodgers found paydirt earlier in the season. Miller is minimally-priced at $5,300 and Ben Roethlisberger back under center aids the entire passing game outlook.
The San Diego defense has struggled mightily this season and Jacksonville has the uncommon perch at No.6 in Vegas point total. The Jaguars are near the bottom of the league in red zone efficiency and touchdowns scored, making Jason Myers a good bet for at least two field goals, if not more. Myers has been hot of late, going 10-for-11 over the past three weeks.
|Kansas City Chiefs||4500||26.5||BUF@KC||15.5|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||4300||17.8||TB@IND||5.5|
|New England Patriots||4600||24.3||NE@DEN||4.0|
|St. Louis Rams||4900||11.3||STL@CIN||1.4|
Baltimore is a sneaky tournament defense this week. The Browns are the worst running team in the NFL by ProFootballReference's Expected Points. Turning Josh McCown into a one-dimensional option is a good formula as the Browns have allowed an NFL-high 36 sacks, 14 fumbles (three more than any other team) and again, are anemic on the ground. On the flip side, Baltimore's defense has been much better against the run than through air. Getting a high volume of McCown attempts, even with Baltimore's struggles on the back end, is a good recipe for value from their $4,600 salary in some tournament lineups for Week 12.