Bink Inc. Week 16

Breaking down the DraftKings player pool

Here at Bink Inc, my aim is to break down the DraftKings player pool and give you the skinny on the various GPP options at your disposal.  I will be going through all positions and all pricing tiers, as well as dropping GPP lineup construction knowledge. Due to DraftKings new regulations regarding selling lineups, we can’t actually give you pre-built lineups.  With that said, each week the Bink Inc. article will provide you with all of the information you need, so that you can craft lineups from our suggestions. In many ways this is better for our readers, as you will become familiar with the different strategies for GPP lineup construction and be able to identify how value shifts from position to position depending on the pricing each week.   

Quarterbacks:

 

Andrew Luck ($7,000)

Colts @ Raiders

Projected Team Total:  25 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  22.5 points (3.2x salary multiple)

Luck is considered questionable heading into Saturday’s game against the Raiders, but his availability is not in doubt as the injury is just a cut to his thumb. Luck has been one of the most consistent fantasy quarterbacks this season, scoring at least 18 DraftKings points in 12 of his 14 games. On the year, Luck has thrown for 3,631 yards with 27 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He has not surpassed 300+ yards passing since week seven, but he has only one game under 250 yards passing and two touchdowns over that span. Luck has also managed to pad his stats by averaging 24.0 rushing yards per game. This week he gets a juicy matchup against an Oakland defense that is ranked 25th in the NFL in passing defense, allowing 259 yards per game. The Raiders have been generous to opposing quarterbacks, giving up 20+ fantasy points in seven of their 14 games, while allowing three different quarterbacks to throw for three or more touchdowns. Given the fact that both the Colts and the Raiders are jockeying for playoff position, this should be a hard fought game where both quarterbacks exceed their salary value. The Raiders vs Colts matchup has the highest projected total of the week at 53 points, and the Colts have an implied team total of 25 points. Luck’s salary ($7,000) is fair given his consistent production, but there is still room for him to have GPP value, as his established ceiling is 38.5 points this season. He makes for a solid GPP play, and one that you should play with absolute confidence.

Cam Newton ($6,600)

Falcons @ Panthers

Projected Team Total:  25 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  19.4 points (2.9x salary multiple)

Cam Newton has had an up and down season, which is not surprising considering the turmoil he has had to face.  Coming off a Super Bowl appearance, the Panthers will most likely finish last in their division, but it hasn’t necessarily been Newton’s fault. His production is down from a year ago, and realistically any decline in his play would likely mean more losses for the Panthers. He is not just the focal point of their offense, he is their offense. On the year, Newton has thrown for 3,074 yards with 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions. On the ground, he’s totaled 317 yards rushing with five touchdowns, a steep decline from last year’s totals of 636 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns.  For DFS purposes, he’s had enough big games to keep his price higher than it probably should be, which has made it hard to play him in anything but the best matchups. This week is one of those times though, as he faces off against a Falcons team that is ranked 30th in the NFL in passing defense, allowing 267.4 yards per game.  Atlanta has given up 30+ point games to four quarterbacks on the year (Jameis Winston, Derek Carr, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers), and 20+ points in eight of their 14 games. The Panthers vs Falcons matchup has the third highest projected total of the week at 52 points, and the Panthers have an implied team total of 25 points. Both Newton and Matt Ryan should be considered elite GPP options in this matchup, but Newton should be the lesser owned of the two, and his price comes at a $600 discount. Newton has an established ceiling of 34.82 points this season, and despite an average game against the Falcons in their first matchup, he should easily crack 20+ points this time around. With many other options on the main slate this week, Newton’s ownership should fall below the 10% mark and with his upside, he makes for a fantastic GPP option in what should be a shootout.

 

Philip Rivers ($6,900)

Chargers @ Browns

Projected Team Total:  24.75 points

Footballguys IVC Projection: 18.9 points (2.7x salary multiple)

This is a week where paying up for the top quarterbacks is an ideal strategy, as many of them have the type of matchups where they can produce big points. This is especially true of Philip Rivers, who gets a weak Cleveland defense to pick on.  Rivers is not having his best statistical season, but with Melvin Gordon III breaking out and giving the Charges a legitimate running threat, that is to be expected. Even so, Rivers has thrown for 3,795 yards with 29 touchdowns and 18 interceptions. The yards and touchdowns are very good, but the 18 interceptions is too many for a guy who has a top flight running back that he can depend on. Rivers has not been great the last three weeks, averaging 14.5 DraftKings points over that time. What he does have going for him is one of the best matchups of the week. The Browns rank 14th in the NFL in passing defense, allowing 245.1 yards per game, but they also rank 31st in run defense (155.7) and 31st in both scoring defense (28 points allowed per game) and total yards per game (400.8). Without Melvin Gordon III, the Chargers will lean on Kenneth Farrow in the run game, but I expect Rivers to be very busy. The Chargers vs Browns matchup has a projected total of 43.5 points and the Chargers have an implied team total of 24.75 points, tied for third highest among road teams this week. Rivers has an established ceiling of 31.36 points this year, and has a very good opportunity to match that total against the Browns. His price is a little higher than you would like, but that shouldn’t prevent you from rostering him in GPP’s.

 

Running Backs:

 

Jordan Howard ($6,300)

Redskins @ Bears

Projected Team Total:  21.75 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  19.1 points (3x salary multiple)

This has been a down year for the Bears, but the one bright spot has been rookie running back Jordan Howard. Despite starting only 10 games this year, Howard has already amassed 1,059 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns, to go along with 28 receptions for 289 yards and one receiving touchdown. He has five 100+ yard rushing games on the season, and has gained at least 75 rushing yards in nine of his 10 starts. Howard also shown an impressive ceiling, putting up 28.3, 33.2 and 32.7 points on his best weeks. This week Howard and the Bears face off against a Washington defensive front that ranks 22nd in the NFL, allowing 115.4 rushing yards per game. Last week, Jonathan Stewart ran right over the Redskins defense, gaining 132 yards on 25 carries. It was the third 100+ yard rushing game that Washington has let up this season, with Isiah Crowell (16-120-1) and DeAngelo Williams (26-143-2) being the other two. Howard has a similar running style to those three, and will see the same type of volume, which should at the very least equal 100+ yards from scrimmage with plenty of room to blow through that.  The Bears vs Redskins matchup has a projected total of 46.5 points, fourth highest on the main slate, and the Bears have an implied team total of 21.75 points. Howard has been very consistent as a starter, and he is seeing the type of volume that makes him viable in GPP’s. On top of that, he has 30+ point upside and has one of the better matchups at the running back position.

 

Bilal Powell ($5,900)

Jets @ Patriots

Projected Team Total:  13.75 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  17.8 points (3x salary multiple)

With Matt Forte injured, Bilal Powell has stepped and played extremely well as the Jets starter the last two games. In those games, Powell has rushed for 239 yards and two touchdowns, while adding 16 receptions and 112 yards receiving. His point totals (37.9 and 27.2, respectively) are right up there with the best running backs, and although it is a small sample size, Powell is the Jets bell-cow back for the rest of the season and his prowess in the passing game makes him an extremely valuable GPP option for the last two games of the season. On the season, Powell is averaging 5.7 yards per carry on 94 carries. This week Powell and the Jets face off against their bitter divisional rival, the New England Patriots. The Jets are one of the worst teams in football with the Patriots being perhaps the best, and the stark contrast between the starting quarterbacks for each team make this matchup even more lopsided. With that said, Powell is a very sneaky option this week due to the sheer volume of touches he’s receiving. The Patriots rank 4th in the NFL in rushing defense, allowing only 87.9 rushing yards per game. They haven’t allowed a 100+ yard rusher at all this season, and have only given up four touchdowns to opposing running backs. This doesn’t seem like the ideal matchup for Powell, but much of his value comes from his prowess in the passing game, and that is one area that the Patriots have been generous to running backs.  CJ Procise (7-87), Le'Veon Bell (10-68), LeSean McCoy (6-38-1), all accumulated double digit points just in the passing game against the Patriots. In addition, seven other running backs have caught at least four passes against New England this season. The Patriots vs Jets matchup has a projected total of 43.5 points and the Jets have an implied team total of 13.75 points. There are a lot of factors going against Powell this week, but you have to look at the projected game script and how his skillset matches up well against the Patriots weaknesses. His established upside of 37.9 points makes him an intriguing GPP play, and his salary ($5,900) is low enough that Powell that could very well reach a 3x salary multiple solely in the passing game. His ownership should be low enough to justify the risk, but as I see it, his floor is relatively stable and 3x should be the minimum of his returns this week.

 

Wide Receiver

 

Michael Crabtree ($6,100)

Colts @ Raiders

Projected Team Total:  28 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  17.7 points (2.9x salary multiple)                    

There are few wide receivers who have been able to return the value that Crabtree has this year. Crabtree’s average DraftKings salary this year is $6,400 and he’s averaging 15.9 points per game. That doesn’t really do his season justice though, as he’s had four games of 6.1 points or less. On the flipside, Crabtree has had eight games of 17.7 points or higher, and also seven games of seven or more receptions.  On the year, Crabtree has caught 77 passes for 866 yards and eight touchdowns. He pairs up very well next to Amari Cooper, and this year has been his reintroduction to many as a dominant wide receiver. I don’t think many people realize just how good Crabtree really was, and is, but he’s doing his best to change that perception, and having an elite talent like Cooper across from him has allowed both receivers to flourish. This week Crabtree and the Raiders host a Colts secondary that has been very generous to opposing wide receivers this season. The Colts rank 27th in the NFL in passing defense, allowing 261.4 yards per game. They also rank 20th in rushing defense (109.6 ypg), 21st in scoring defense (22.8 ppg) and 27th in overall defense (370.9 ypg). The Colts have only allowed two 100+ yard receivers, but that mainly due to the fact that they are getting beat at every receiver position, so the cumulative effect is much larger than the individual. The Raiders vs Colts matchup has a projected game total of 53 points, highest of any game this week, and the Raiders have an implied team total of 28 points, second only to the Patriots. Crabtree’s price is very soft at $6,100 and he has an established ceiling of 33.8 points. Going against a weak secondary like the Colts makes him one of the better GPP value plays at receiver this week, and he’s a player I will have a lot of exposure to this weekend.

 

DeAndre Hopkins ($5,200)

Bengals @ Texans

Projected Team Total:  21 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  14.9 points (2.8x salary multiple)                    

After having a breakout season in 2015 where he caught 111 passes for 1,521 yards and 11 touchdowns, DeAndre Hopkins has struggled this year. He’s totaled only 68 catches for 788 yards and four touchdowns, and has scored over 17 DraftKings points only once this season. In fairness to Hopkins, much of his struggles is not his fault. With the Texans selecting Will Fuller V and Braxton Miller in the draft, Hopkins volume of targets was certain to drop, but it was also seen as a way to take pressure off of Hopkins so that his targets were of a higher quality. The Texans also brought in Lamar Miller from the Dolphins, a game breaking running back that could help keep opposing secondaries from dropping too many men in coverage. The biggest change was at quarterback however, and that was the choice that proved to be disastrous for the Texans, as they gave a monster contract to Brock Osweiler.  Fast forward 15 weeks and Osweiler was benched last week in favor of Tom Savage, an unlikely move that probably ended up saving their season. While Hopkins was off my radar for much of this year due to his inflated price tag that took last year into account more than this year, the presence of Savage has turned things around for Hopkins. Despite only playing a little more than a half of one game, Savage helped Hopkins see 17 targets in last week’s game, which resulted in eight catches for 87 yards. It was the most targets Hopkins had seen all year, and it helped him score the second most points this season. The Texans vs Bengals matchup has a projected game total of 41 points, and the Texans have an implied team total of 21 points. Hopkins started out the season with a salary of $8,600, which would make him the most expensive wide receiver in week 16. His salary this week is $5,200 though, a very soft price for a player of Hopkins caliber, especially now that Hopkins will see improved quarterback play and a bevy of targets come his way. Hopkins is an interesting GPP play this week, and one that should fly under the radar. Ultimately, he’s too skilled not to take a shot on him, and I have a feeling that he’s going to establish his ceiling this week and put up his first 25+ point game.

 

Allen Robinson ($4,600)

Titans @ Jaguars

Projected Team Total:  19.25 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  12.9 points (2.8x salary multiple)

Much like DeAndre Hopkins, Allen Robinson is suffering through a letdown season after the coming out party that was his 2015 season. Robinson caught 80 passes for 1400 yards and 14 touchdowns last season, but currenlty sits at 59 catches for 654 yards and six touchdowns in 2016. Also similar to Hopkins, Robinson's rapid decrease in production can be directly attributed to the quality of his quarterback play. Among starting quarterbacks, Blake Bortles and Brock Osweiler sit in the bottom five in terms of quarterback rating. Robinson is insanely talented and excels at all levels of the passin game. He has fantastic hands, and although he is not a burner, his long stride, athleticism and ability to play above the rim makes him a dangerous downfield threat. The Jaguars brought in Chris Ivory to help add consistency to the running back position, which in theory was supposed to help take pressure off of Robinson, and allow him more single coverage where he can be a gamebreaker. That has not worked out so well as Ivory has been injured for much of the season, and TJ Yeldon has not been able to force opposing defenses to respect the Jaguars ground game. Robinson has not had many standout games this year, however, his one "turn back the clock to 2015 game" came against the Titans in their first meeting this season. In that game, Robinson caught nine passes for 107 yards and a touchdown, while also adding a two points conversion, good for 30.7 points on the day. If you were to look at Robinson's game log, the last four weeks have been pretty ugly, with Robinson scoring 3.5, 2.7, 6.1, and 4.4 points, respectively. That is certainly not the type of production that would inspire hope, but I am looking at it as a positive thing because it should keep his ownership levels very low. For GPP purposes, we are most concerned with a players ceiling, and that is something that Robinson has in spades regardless of how bad Blake Bortles is playing right now. The Jaguars vs Titans matchup has a projected total of 43.5 points, and the Jaguars have an implied team total of 19.25 points. The lineup construction strategy that has had the best results this year, has been to pay up for the top tier at running back, and take shots at wide receivers in the $4,500 to $6,000 range. This week, we have been given plenty of gifts at wide receiver, as players like Michael Thomas, Michael Crabtree, DeAndre Hopkins and Allen Robinson all fall in that range, among many other talented wide receivers who have high enough ceilings to justify playing them in GPP's. Playing Robinson does not come without risk, but this is certainly a week where that risk is worth the reward. He should see plenty of targets and has proven that his matchup against the Titans cornerbacks favor him heavily. There are quite a few receivers within $1000 of his price that have higher, and much more stable floors, but few can match Robinson's ceiling, and along with low ownership, is exactly what we are looking for to fill out our GPP rosters. 

 

Tight End

Antonio Gates ($4,400)

Chargers @ Browns

Projected Team Total:  24.75 points

Footballguys IVC Projection:  9.4 points (2.1x salary multiple)

Antonio Gates is playing in his 14th NFL season, and will go down as one of the most prolific tight ends of not only our generation, but all time. If not for Tony Gonzalez’s incredible run as the G.O.A.T, Gates would most likely hold all of the major records for a tight end. There is one record that Gates could very well take from Gonzalez, and that is the career touchdown record.  Coming into this season, Gates had totaled 104 touchdowns, trailing Gonzalez by only seven (111 career touchdowns for Gonzalez) touchdowns. Gates has caught five touchdowns this season, so he only needs two more to catch Gonzalez, and considering the loyalty he’s displayed to the Chargers, they want to see him get the record. Philip Rivers is on record for saying he wants Gates to get the record, so it only makes sense for Gates to be heavily targeted in his last two games. This week the Charges travel to Cleveland to take on a Browns team that has given up the most points to opposing tight ends this season. They’ve given up 12 touchdowns to opposing tight ends, an incredibly high number, and they’ve allowed three different tight ends to catch multiple touchdowns (Jordan Reed, Martellus Bennett and Tyler Eifert), including a three touchdown game from Bennett. Gates price is fair at $4,400, but considering his multiple touchdown upside, Rivers wanting to get him the record and how poorly the Browns have defended tight ends this year, Gates is my favorite play at tight end this week. He makes for a perfect GPP play, and his low price will allow you to spend up at other positions without sacrificing too much upside. 


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