DFS Roundtable: Digging Deep for QB/WR GPP Stacks

Looking at QB/WR stacks that will be lower owned and ranking top three plays of the week.

It's Week 13 so lets dig deep on our quarterback/wide receiver stacks.
Rank and discuss your top 3 quarterback and wide receiver combo's from the following teams: Arizona, Cleveland, Houston, New York Jets, Miami, Denver, Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Tampa Bay, Green Bay, Baltimore, San Francisco, and Chicago.

Phil Alexander:

  1. Jameis Winston/Mike Evans - The awful pass defenses of the Buccaneers and Packers gives the game some shootout appeal in Green Bay. Evans has 22 targets in his last two games and he's overdue for a touchdown (or two).
  2. Brett Hundley/Davante Adams - Adams is the WR8 on DraftKings since Green Bay's Week 8 bye.
  3. Blake Bortles/Marqise Lee - Bortles passed for 330 yards and a touchdown when Jacksonville faced Indianapolis in Week 7. The Colts just lost their only respectable cornerback, Rashaan Melvin, for the season meaning Lee will finally avoid shadow coverage. Don't be fooled by sub-par performances in each of the last two games. Lee was blanketed by Jason McCourty in Week 11 and Patrick Peterson erased him from the Jaguars game plan last week. Look for him to get back to double-digit targets and 15+ fantasy points.
  4. Josh McCown/Robby Anderson - All Anderson does is produce. Jets are at home and Kansas City has allowed 28% more normalized fantasy production than league average to opposing wideouts over the last five games.
  5. Trevor Siemian/Demaryius Thomas - Siemian stinks, but before losing his job to Brock Osweiler in Week 9, he scored more than 20 fantasy points in three separate games. The Dolphins 31st-ranked pass defense (DVOA) has failed to contain every non-Joe Flacco quarterback they've faced since Week 7 and Thomas leads the Broncos in every major receiving category. This is a viable stack given Siemian's low price.
  6. Deshone Kizer/Josh Gordon - Playing Kizer in San Diego may seem borderline insane, but he's topped 20 fantasy points in two of his last three games due in large part to his rushing ability. It's not inconceivable Kizer goes for another 20 points, which makes stacking him with Gordon for only 17% of the salary cap both intriguing and extremely risky. We have no idea what Gordon will look like after nearly three years away from football, but if he's 75% of his 2013 self, $4,100 is a fair price to pay for a shot at a long touchdown (and possibly much more). 
  7. Tom Savage/DeAndre Hopkins - We've reached the point on the list where I wouldn't actually consider playing these stacks. I like Hopkins fine against Tennessee's dismal secondary, but it's a hard pass on Savage, whose absolute ceiling is only 3x his low salary (DraftKings).
  8. Jacoby Brissett/Jack Doyle - I realize the question said QB-WR stacks, but no thanks to Indianapolis' outside receivers against Jacksonville. I'm not playing Brissett, but Doyle is a target hog and caught six-out-of-seven passes thrown his way in the Week 7 game between these teams.
  9. Mitchell Trubisky/Dontrelle Inman - Kind of interesting at home against the 49ers, who have allowed the second-most raw fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. Still, with the Bears likely to batter San Francisco with a healthy dose of Jordan Howard, this is a pretty thin play. Inman, however, is in play on his own. He's reached double-digit PPR points in two of his last three games and remains affordable across the industry.
  10. Blaine Gabbert/Larry Fitzgerald - I'll admit I'm somewhat intrigued by the possibility of a Gabbert stack that includes Todd Gurley and at least one Rams receiver on the other side, but who to stack Gabbert with from his own team is the question. Fitzgerald is the only obvious answer, but the Rams don't give up much to wide receivers, particularly from the slot. Ricky Seals-Jones is hovering on the fringes of my radar, but his 61% target per route rate is wholly unsustainable. It's tough to pull the trigger on Seals-Jones without news he's supplanting Jermaine Gresham, which is unlikely due to the latter's run blocking ability.
  11. Joe Flacco/Benjamin Watson - Blech. Stay far away from all things Flacco, but if you need a Baltimore pass catcher for some reason, go with Watson against Detroit (29th-ranked DVOA vs. tight ends).
  12. Jimmy Garoppolo/? - Maybe Jimmy Garoppolo plays like a franchise quarterback in his first start for San Francisco, but Siemian and Geno Smith both cost less and have great matchups. Let your opponents pay to find out if Garoppolo is any good without the Patriots supporting cast to prop him up. And for stacking purposes, we have no idea which 49ers pass catcher Garoppolo has developed the most rapport with.
John Mamula:
Brett Hundley/Davante AdamsOf the teams on the list, both sides of the Tampa Bay/Green Bay matchup have my interest peaked. The Buccaneers are running away with the award for worst pass defense as they have allowed a league-leading 3131 passing yards thus far. To put that into perspective, the league average is near 2500 passing yards allowed. Packers quarterback Brett Hundley showed signs of life this past Monday as he passed for 245 yards and 3 touchdowns in a hostile environment at Heinz Field. Davante Adams has been his preferred receiving option as he has averaged 9 targets per game over the past seven weeks.

Ryan Fitzpatrick or Jameis Winston with Mike Evans I agree with Phil that Mike Evans is due for a breakout game as the Buccaneers wide receiver has been peppered with targets since returning from his Week 10 suspension. Evans has yet to crack 100 receiving yards this season but I think this is the week that changes. The Buccaneers wide receiver finished with four 100+ yard performances last season and five 100+ yard games in 2015. 

Josh McCown/Robby AndersonThe Jets offense is my third choice from the list as their opponent, the Chiefs, are ranked as the fifth-worst pass defense in the NFL. McCown has multiple touchdowns in five of his past seven games and should have no trouble in this matchup. Robby Anderson has scored in five consecutive games.  

Justin Bonnema:
1. Hundley/Adams – Perhaps this is recency bias coming to take a bite out of my bankroll, but Hundley looked great against one of the best passing defenses in the league Sunday night. In fact, he has now faced four straight good-to-great defenses in Detroit (14th in DVOA), Chicago (15th in DVOA), Baltimore (2nd in DVOA), and Pittsburg (7th in DVOA). His stats over that time frame: 941 yards, four touchdowns, 65.6 completion percentage, three interceptions (all of which came against the Ravens), 63 rushing yards, one rushing touchdown, and average of 15+ fantasy points per game. Not terrible considering his lack of experience and level of competition. Now he gets one of the worst passing defenses in the league (Buccaneers), who rank 30th in DVOA, have allowed the most passing yards, have the lowest sack percentage, and have permitted the third highest adjusted net yards per pass attempt. All the stats say target Hundley, who has targeted Davante Adams more than any other Packer since becoming the starter in Week 6 (52 targets; next closest is Jordy Nelson with 36). In fact, Adams has seen the 14th most targets among wide receivers over that time frame. 

2. Siemian/Thomas – I’ll echo what Phil said; Siemian stinks. But we’ve seen him provide big fantasy scores, especially when he gets a soft matchup. The Dolphins have allowed 10 passing touchdowns over their last three games, even though one of those games included Fitzpatrick. Siemian has three games this season of at least 20 DraftKings’ points, and returned a decent line last week (14.86 points). The price of Siemian/Thomas is too low to ignore with both being in a great spot. 

3. Fitzpatrick/Evans – There is some cross-stacking appeal to this game, though I’d keep my exposure low since you just never know what kind of awful floor Fitzpatrick vs. Hundley provides. The Packers defense is one of the worst in the league, and even though Evans has been a major disappointment, I think he at least finds the end zone this week and maybe finally takes advantage of the fact that he sees 9.6 targets per game—tied with Larry Fitzgerald for the seventh most. Fitzpatrick has a nasty floor, so I’m not as intrigued by him, but he has averaged 279 passing yards over his last two games and is protecting the ball. 
Justin Howe:
Blaine Gabbert/Larry Fitzgerald – Gabbert isn’t a starting-caliber NFL quarterback, nor particularly close to one. But that’s probably a good thing for Fitzgerald’s prospects going forward. He remains a target monster, and Gabbert isn’t the gunslinger type: he prefers to throw low-impact passes to his underneath receivers. Dating back to last season’s starting stint with the 49ers, Gabbert has targeted Fitzgerald (9.0 targets per game) and Jeremy Kerley (7.8) far more than anyone else. There looks to be a strong path to another 10 looks for Fitzgerald this week, and he won’t have Jalen Ramsey draped over his shoulders.

DeShone Kizer/Corey Coleman – Go on about Josh Gordon all you want, and perhaps the phenom really has pulled it together. But there’s more to becoming an immediate fantasy WR1 – especially in a scattershot offense with a scattershot rookie passer – than being a phenom. While Gordon gets his feet wet – and perhaps even after – Coleman will likely dominate Kizer’s attention. The two were inseparable in the preseason, then Kizer looked his way a team-high 13 times over the first 2 weeks. In last week’s return from injury, Coleman drew 8 of Kizer’s 31 targets, including an early 44-yard catch and a dropped 29-yard touchdown. This duo has real potential for weekly Josh McCown-Robby Anderson upside.

Blake Bortles/Dede Westbrook – No, he won’t draw 10 targets every week; what we saw in Week 12 was mostly an overcorrection due to Marqise Lee being plastered by Patrick Peterson. But Westbrook proved he’s likely No. 2 in the pecking order, and why not? We forget just how absurdly productive he was at Oklahoma (1,521 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2016), as well as his evisceration of the NFL preseason (17 targets, 13 catches, 288 yards, 2 touchdowns). Bortles seems to be a fan, and while rail-thin he’s still a truly explosive talent. There’s a ton to like about this pairing.
Dan Hindery:
Assuming Jameis Winston is healthy enough to get back in the lineup for Tampa Bay, Winston and Mike Evans probably will make for a strong stack. Green Bay’s secondary was awful even before injuries struck. The beat-up Packers secondary allowed 351 yards and 4 touchdowns on Monday night to Ben Roethlisberger

Part of the reason the Winston-Evans stack is so attractive is because the Tampa Bay-Green Bay matchup has shootout potential. The Buccaneers pass rush is toothless, ranking dead last in Football Outsiders’ adjusted sack rate. The secondary is also easily beaten and Tampa Bay’s pass defense ranks 30th in DVOA. The Buccaneers have been torched by opposing WR1s, allowing over 90 yards per game. It sets up great for Davante Adams, who has clearly emerged as the top target in the Green Bay offense. He has averaged 9.3 targets per game since Brett Hundley since Week 5. Hundley and Adams are priced right to stack.

My favorite under-the-radar stack is Blake Bortles and Dede Westbrook. Westbrook has clearly emerged as a top-2 receiving option for Jacksonville. He was on the field for 92% of Bortles’ drop backs in Week 12 and saw a whopping 10 targets in his second NFL game. The Jaguars coaches have talked this week about how they need to take more deep shots because teams are stacking the box against the run. Westbrook is a quintessential big-play threat with elite speed and excellent run-after-the-catch skills. The Jaguars face a poor Indianapolis pass defense that has given up more 20+ yard plays than any other team. The Colts will also be without emerging young cornerback Rashaan Melvin and have major questions in their secondary. 

James Brimacombe:
Brett Hundley and Davante Adams - Tampa Bay continues to struggle to defend the quarterback position giving up the 6th most fantasy points to the positon. There hasn't been a game all season where they didn't give up at least one touchdown pass to a quarterback and 5 of 11 games they have given up multiple scores. Hundley is coming off his best performance of the year against the Pittsburgh Steelers on the road going for 245 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Tampa Bay defense just got destroyed by Julio Jones last week (12/253/2) so following that game script up with pairing Hundley with Davante Adams makes a lot of sense this week. Adams has been the one wide receiver that has some good vibes with Hundley, seeing at least 8 targets in each of the last four games and averaging 88 receiving yards per game in that span.

Blaine Gabbert and Larry Fitzgerald - This stack is more of a risk as the Rams defense has been solid all season long. What you are hoping for here is that the Rams put up a lot of points and force Gabbert into a game script where he has to make plays with his arm and in turn that leads to plenty of targets headed to Fitzgerald. In two starts this season Gabbert has 5 total touchdowns so a multi touchdown game is not out of the question here. In Week 11 Gabbert connected with Fitzgerald for 9-of-10 targets for a 9/91/1 stat line against the Texans.

Blake Bortles and Marqise Lee - Bortles had his best game of the season back in Week 7 against the Colts as he passed for 330 yards and a touchdown, and this week will look to duplicate those numbers. Marqise Lee continues to be one of his favorite targets as he averages 7.3 targets a game from Bortles. In a pass friendly matchup this week against the Colts I think you have to consider the Jaguars QB/WR stack in GPP's.

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