With Week 1 finally in the books, DFS grinders finally have recent data to aid their decision making process. Advanced stats, metrics, and analytics help discover low-owned, high-upside plays each week. This slate features a number of stud receivers in tough matchups and a few salary savers in smash spots. With that said, here are a few value plays and GPP pivots worth considering in Week 2.
Josh Allen ($5,300) – Buffalo Bills
As erratic and unpredictable as they come, Josh Allen remains in play for cash and GPPs at just $5,300 this week. Allen actually looked improved in his first game action of 2019. Allen completed 64.9-percent of his passes on 37 attempts. Importantly, he showed a connection with John Brown, who Buffalo used in a variety of ways on Sunday. Allen also managed 38 rushing yards, keeping his floor high for cash games. Allen notoriously rushed for at least 95 yards on four occasions last season.
Taking a look at the matchup, Allen faces a New York Giants defense that Dak Prescott just diced up for 405 passing yards and another 12 on the ground. The Giants also struggled in pass defense last season, allowing the 11th most passing yards (4,222) to opposing signal callers. Generating absolutely no pressure, the New York Giants finished as one of three teams without a sack in Week 1. The Bills, however, bolstered their offensive line this off-season and allowed only one sack in Week 1. While a 43-point game total adds some risk, Allen’s cheap price, solid matchup, and improve offensive line keep him in play across formats.
Ezekiel Elliott ($8,700) – Dallas Cowboys
Returning to the Cowboys less than a week before kickoff, Ezekiel Elliott handled 53.2% of the Cowboy’s Week 1 snaps. He also notched 53 yards on 13 carries, while seeing 2 targets in the passing game. This equated to a 51.7-percent Opportunity Share (No.23) On top of the quick turnaround, Elliott’s low snap share and touch totals likely resulted from Dallas’ dismantling of the New York Giants 35-17. Looking back to last season, Zeke handled 304 carries and 95 targets in Dallas’ offense.
Check out Ezekiel Elliott on PlayerProfiler’s Weekly Rankings & Projections:
Looking to Week 2, Elliott faces a Washington team that just allowed 116 rushing yards to Eagles’ backs. Washington remained surprisingly competitive against the Eagles, losing 32-27. However, Washington enters this contest as 5-point underdogs, boding well for Zeke’s rushing output. Washington’s defensive line also continues to deal with injuries to defensive tackles Jonathan Allen and Caleb Brantley. Either way, after spending another week with the team, Zeke looks like a cash lock and strong GPP play this weekend.
Leonard Fournette ($6,300) – Jacksonville Jaguars
Suffering from negative game script and an injury to Nick Foles, Leonard Fournette finished with 66 rushing yards on 13 carries, while seeing 6 targets in the passing game. Despite the lackluster box score, Fournette finished with a massive 90.5-percent Opportunity Share (No.4). Looking at the Week 2 DFS Slate, Fournette stands out as one of the cheapest bell-cow backs on the entire slate.
Examining Fournette’s matchup, he faces off against a Texan’s defense that just allowed Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray to combine for 140 rushing yards. Importantly, the Texans also gave up nine catches for 76 yards to New Orleans’ backs. While Fournette remains a step below Kamara as a receiver, he has quietly demonstrated his pass catching prowess throughout every step of his career. Even as a collegiate prospect heading to the NFL, Fournette recorded an 11.9-percent College Target Share (84th-percentile) at LSU.
Projected lose by 9-points to the Texans, game script favors Fournette in the short passing game this weekend. Notably, rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew entered the NFL with a 7.2 Yards per Attempt (20th-percentile), showing his affinity for the short passing game.
Mecole Hardman ($4,800) – Kansas City Chiefs
In the Tyreek Hill fallout, Mecole Hardman enters Week 2 with a $4,800 price tag. While Hardman figures to draw major ownership on Sunday, his feature role in the Chiefs’ offense keeps him in play.
Following the Hill injury, Hardman stepped up to play a 56.7% snap share. Unfortunately for Hardman, he only received one target from Patrick Mahomes, leading to a drop. Positively, Hardman projects to play in three-wide sets for the Chiefs this week against a porous Raiders’ secondary. While the Broncos failed to take advantage, the Raiders retain one of the worst defenses in football. Making matters worse, the Raiders lost Gareon Conley and Johnathan Abrams to major injuries last week.
While Hardman certainly can’t replicate Hill’s production, he offers a similar skill set. Hardman ran a 4.33 40-yard dash coming out of Georgia, giving him a 102.0 Speed Score (72nd-percentile). Despite the elevated ownership, Hardman remains in play as a cheap attachment to Mahomes.
Christian Kirk ($4,500) – Arizona Cardinals
Living up to their off-season promises, Kliff Kingsbury and the Arizona Cardinals ran an abundance of four wide receiver sets and played incredibly fast. In total, they ran 55 plays with at least four wide receivers. They also led the league in seconds per snap (22.8) and played with the highest no huddle rate (41.5-percent). While all this helped Christian Kirk see immense volume last Sunday, he remains under-priced at $4,600.
Looking at Kirk’s volume, he played on 96.1-percent of Arizona’s snaps, recording 11 targets in the process. Kirk only managed to snag four of them for 32 yards, but a mere seven came in as catchable. Notably, Kirk also saw 139 air yards on his targets, showing some usage downfield.
This week, Kirks matchup against the Baltimore Ravens looks tough on paper. However, the Ravens already suffered significant injuries to Tavon Young and Jimmy Smith, who will miss Sunday’s game. Stud corner, Marlon Humphrey also missed practice on Wednesday, putting his status in question. With a perceived tough matchup, Kirk could end up under-owned this weekend. However, the Cardinals’ pace of play and Kirk’s individual volume make him a solid option for DFS.
Tyler Boyd ($6,500) – Cincinnati Bengals
After an electric Week 1 game against the Seattle Seahawks, Tyler Boyd has flown under-the-radar after John Ross dazzled for 158 receiving yards on 7 catches. While Ross looks chalky at $4,600, Boyd has a chance to enter Week 1 under-owned at $6,500.
Looking at opportunity alone, Boyd received 11 targets to Ross’ 12. While Ross retains a distinct edge with 172 air yards compared to Boyd’s 75, Boyd’s shallow routes should lead to bankable fantasy production in the future. This should help Boyd and the Bengals against a 49ers team this week, who generated immense pressure in Week 1. While the 49ers performed well against the Buccaneers on Sunday, their secondary remains a major concern. Both Ahkello Witherspoon and K’Waun Williams struggled last season, allowing Passer Ratings of 107.6 and 108.8 in their coverage. While all three of the Bengals played at least 30-percent of their snaps in the slot, Boyd’s 42.9-percent slot rate led the team. This means he should face sieve slot corner, Williams at the highest rate. With ownership likely to congregate on Ross, Boyd looks like a sneaky pivot in cash and GPPs.
Travis Kelce ($7,300) – Kansas City Chiefs
Another Chief who stands to benefit from Hill’s absence, Travis Kelce stands out as Week 2’s top tight end play. Last week, Kelce hauled in three of eight target for 88 yards against the Jacksonville Jaguars and should improve on those numbers this week.
Last year, Kelce’s 150 targets ranked second at the tight end position. While that number remains high, Kelce’s target ceiling increases without Hill in the lineup. Kelce also draws a solid matchup against a porous Oakland Raiders’ defense. Last year, this unit allowed the fifth-most receiving yards to the tight end position (1,060). Now standing as Mahomes’ top receiving option, Kelce’s $7,300 price tag looks like a bargain.
Still likely to come in under-owned, Kelce makes a solid play in GPPs and cash lineups this week.