Top DFS Stacks on FanDuel and DraftKings: Week 5
Stacking players is a stairway to the top of daily fantasy tournaments, maximizing upside by creating the sort of volatility that can help your roster post a crooked score—one way or another.
Below are some of the most intriguing stacking plays I found while sifting through the week's matchups. Most of these options will leave room for high-ceiling studs. The goal, naturally, is to get a lot for a little. So let's get into it.
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Vegas Raiders (-5.5) @ Kansas City Chiefs - O/U 56.0
QB Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs ($9,000 FD/$7,700 DK)
RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Chiefs ($7,900 FD/$6,800 DK)
WR Sammy Watkins, Chiefs ($5,600 FD/$5,600 DK)
TE Darren Waller, Raiders ($6,800 FD/$5,900 DK)
The game sporting this week’s highest over-under has stacks aplenty, to no one’s surprise. You have a team—the Chiefs—likely to pile on the points and another team—the COVID-plagued Raiders—likely to play from behind.
Consulting the 4for4 Stack Value Report machine, we find the Mahomes-CEH-Watkins stack as the highest upside (and best value) play among QB-RB-WR3 combos. Sure, you could throw Tyreek Hill in there instead of Watkins, but you’ll have a rough time filling out the rest of your roster—especially on DK—with players who could combine with this Chiefs stack to take down a GPP. Watkins makes this four-headed stack more palatable. Watkins is seeing an 18% targets share—2% less than Hill—in the league’s most potent offense.
Though the Raiders don’t profile as the best matchup to receivers—only 56.4% of targets against Vegas have gone to wideouts, 15th lowest in the league—KC is going to score a truckload of points here. Watkins is the cheapest way to take advantage of Mahomes’ production, and far more reliable than Mecole Hardman. Mahomes, naturally, has smoked the Raiders in four starts against the Silver and Black, averaging 299 yards, 2.75 touchdown tosses, and 28.85 fantasy points. Only Lamar Jackson and Dak Prescott have a higher projected ceiling than Mahomes this week.
Clyde Edwards-Mehlaire, as someone on Twitter so rudely called the rookie back, isn’t doing much with his opportunity. He’s getting chances, and lots of them—that’s all that matters. CEH has gotten 25, 15, 25, and 19 touches through the first four weeks. Mahomes has targeted the rookie 19 times, though eight of those targets came in negative game script during KC’s Week 2 comeback against LA. Edwards-Helaire should have upside in Week 5 even if the Raiders somehow manage to keep pace with Kansas City.
Only two teams allow more schedule-adjusted fantasy points to running backs than Vegas; only seven defenses have allowed more rushing yardage; and a mere three defenses have given up more running backs catches this season. CEH’s DFS price point has remained stagnant because the touchdowns haven’t come along with the opportunity and the yardage. That could change this week. We might not get Edwards-Helaire at less than $7,000 on DraftKings for the rest of the season.
Running it back with Darren Waller makes all kinds of sense. He comes into Week 5 with a bulky 29.25% target share; the next closest Raider has a target share of 15.75%. And his matchup this week isn’t as bad as it looks on paper: KC has faced two teams this season, the Patriots and Texans, that don’t use their tight ends very much in the passing game. In Week 2, Hunter Henry drew eight targets against the Chiefs, catching six for 83 yards. In the Chiefs’ Week 3 dismantling of the Ravens, Baltimore tight ends saw 10 targets. Waller has the third-highest projected ceiling of the week, behind only Travis Kelce and George Kittle. A big day for Waller won’t hinge on negative game script. It wouldn’t hurt though.
Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons - O/U 54.5
QB Teddy Bridgewater, Panthers ($7,100 FD/$5,900 DK)
RB Mike Davis, Panthers ($6,800 FD/$6,400 DK)
WR Calvin Ridley, Falcons ($8,300 FD/$7,500 DK)
After seeing Mike Davis’ DraftKings salary jump by $2,400 over the past few weeks, I’d think DFS players on the full PPR site will hedge a bit on the Carolina starting running back, offering some leverage for those who go in on Davis in a superb game environment.
This game’s over-under got even more appealing on Wednesday when Carolina’s implied total increased from 23.75 to 26.25 points. Atlanta’s defense can’t stop anyone via the air or the ground. Their defensive deficiencies were on full display last week against the Packers, who did whatever they wanted to do against the Falcons nonexistent defense. An upshot for Davis and his locked-in pass-catching role for Carolina: the Falcons have allowed the second-most running back catches through four weeks, as a nice 24.69% of targets against Atlanta have gone to opposing backs—the sixth-highest rate in the NFL. We just saw Green Bay backs get a combined 16 targets against the Falcons on Monday night. Atlanta linebacker Deion Jones has been burned all season by running backs. Sixteen targets against Jones have turned into 13 receptions, 78 yards, and a touchdown. Fellow Falcons linebacker Mykal Walker has been even worse, allowing 11 catches on 12 targets for 83 yards and a score.
Davis, having seen 21 touches in each of his two starts for the Panthers, should once again see around 20 touches in Week 5. He could feast. Exploiting those coverage matchups will fall to Teddy Bridgewater, a fantasy force of late who has completed 73% of his passes this season, totaling 512 passing yards over the past two weeks. Teddy has 12 rushing attempts through four games, offering a little more juice in what should be a high-scoring back-and-forth Week 5 affair. The Falcons have allowed a league-high 7.73% touchdown rate this season, and only Seattle has been gouged for more passing yardage. There’s no reason to think Bridgewater won’t get every chance to put up a GPP-worthy stat line.
Julio Jones, after leaving Monday’s game with an aggravation of his chronic hamstring injury, probably doesn’t have a great chance to play this week against Carolina. If he manages to gut it out and play, he won’t be anything resembling 100 percent. That leaves Calvin Ridley as the unquestioned alpha for Atlanta. There’s a chance we see Ridley usage depressed a bit this week after his unexplainable zero against Green Bay in which he dropped a late touchdown that could’ve really helped out your favorite single-game contest tout. I’ll get over it, one day. Ridley posted a naked stat line while finishing with 27% of the team’s air yards on five targets. He’s accounted for almost 36% of the team’s air yards this season, and we know what he can do when Matt Ryan peppers him with targets. Ridley is in an ideal spot one week after he burned DFS players with a disastrous game.
Brief side note for the lineup tinkerers: Olamide Zaccheaus makes for a sensible run-back candidate if Julio is out against Carolina. All Zaccheaus does is get targets.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans - O/U 54
QB Deshaun Watson, Texans ($7,900 FD/$6,900 DK)
WR Will Fuller, Texans ($6,600 FD/$6,600 DK)
RB James Robinson, Jaguars ($6,700 DK)
I don’t know how the Texans’ organizational upheaval will affect their game plan this week, as I don’t have sources inside the locker room feeding me insider info (though that would be cool, if any Texans players are into that sort of thing). It’s hard to imagine the offense could be more dysfunctional with Bill O’Brien dispatched. How could Houston’s offense be worse? That’s the question I’m left to ponder.
Deshaun Watson gets his turn against an abysmal Jacksonville secondary. The Jags are allowing a league-high 76.9% completion rate and a hefty 8.3 yards per pass attempt, the third-highest in the league. Three of four quarterbacks to face the Jaguars this year have eclipsed 23 fantasy points, and all four have gone over 20 points. Only six teams are allowing more schedule-adjusted fantasy production to QBs. Watson has little time to operate in the pocket this season—he’s been pressured at the second-highest rate in the NFL—but that shouldn’t matter too much against a Jacksonville front seven with a sack rate of 3%. Only two teams have a lower rate through four weeks.
Meanwhile, Will Fuller leads the Texans in targets, air yards, and yards after the catch. He’s the clear-cut No. 1 receiver—forget that inconvenient hiccup a few weeks ago. This week he plays a Jags secondary full of guys who have been scorched in coverage throughout the season’s first month. No. 2 wideouts have had a pretty good time against the Jaguars of late: DeVante Parker caught five of five targets for 69 nice yards in Week 3, and Tyler Boyd finished with seven catches on eight targets against Jacksonville for 90 yards. Boyd, for what it’s worth, had a touchdown called back on a holding penalty. Fuller’s projected Week 5 ceiling of 25.9 fantasy points makes him an ideal DFS tournament option in a superb game environment. Fuller is a touch more appealing on FanDuel, where touchdowns matter more because of the 0.5 PPR scoring and he accounts for 11% of your salary. On DraftKings, Fuller accounts for 13.2% of your budget.
In last week’s Bengals-Jaguars game, we ran it back with James Robinson, who came through with 21 touches for 107 yards. Sadly, the touchdown never came. The process was solid though. Through four weeks, Robinson is dominating with 33% total opportunity (rushes plus targets), 20% higher than the next closest offensive player, Laviska Shenault. We’re going with Robinson again as the run-back guy for Jacksonville because he’s seeing enough opportunity in negative game script and, luckily for us, he’s facing a run-funnel defense in Houston. The Texans, giving up the second most schedule-adjusted points to running backs, are being clobbered on the ground. Nearly 55% of plays run against Houston’s defense this season have been rush attempts; only one other defense (Detroit) has seen a rushing share of more than 50% against them this year. The hope here is that Robinson converts his opportunity into a touchdown—or two.