Week 10 Breakout Player Model: Top NFL DFS Contrarian Plays
One of the biggest advantages you can deploy in daily fantasy is buying low on a player who has fallen out of favor with the rest of the field but is set up for a smash week. The 4for4 Player Stat Explorer is home to a model that compares a fantasy player's actual fantasy output with their expected fantasy output, based on their usage and historical data. The goal is to highlight players that have had the requisite usage (snaps, targets, air yards, etc) to produce big fantasy outcomes, but due to the natural variance of the sport have yet to do so. Many times, those underperforming players will be low-owned in DFS and make for fantastic contrarian plays, which this article will highlight.
|Player||Team||Position||Fantasy Points||Expected FP||FPOE|
WR Chase Claypool, Bears ($5,800 FD/$4,800 DK)
Chase Claypool racked up six targets in his debut with the Bears. It seems as though a perfect storm is brewing here for Claypool. Justin Fields is starting to hit his stride, not only rushing for massive numbers but looking better as a passer. Claypool leaves the crowded Steelers' receiver corps and has to only contend with Darnell Mooney for targets.
The Bears get a matchup with the Lions, who have been defensively inept all season. Claypool has another week of practice to get in sync with Fields after only hauling two catches on six targets. The six targets were encouraging though, especially targeting Claypool late in the game with a win in the balance. The ball was a deep shot that the NFL later admitted should have been called defensive pass interference. Look for the Bears and hopefully Claypool to get right in this game against the Lions' pass defense.
WR Diontae Johnson, Steelers ($6,600 FD/$5,800 DK)
Another week, another Diontae Johnson sighting at the top of the breakout player model. At this point, the model must think something is wrong with this guy. How does all this usage keep resulting in five receptions for 30 yards every week? Nothing has really changed in terms of his usage. He's on the field for over 90% of snaps and is a virtual lock to push for 10+ targets every week. He gets the Saints' pass defense this week which rates out 20th in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed to wide receivers. Johnson is defying the odds of regression by turning in floor game after floor game on double-digit targets. If he doesn't hit this week, it may be time to just chalk him up to not being a very good play in this offense.
WR Van Jefferson, Rams ($5,100 FD/$3,500 DK)
Van Jefferson returned to the lineup last week and saw plenty of opportunity but came away with zero fantasy points. In watching his targets, a few were his fault, decent passes that he should have reeled in. We can chalk the first week of action up to some rust. However, he now has two weeks of practice under his belt and one full game to get up to speed. I think he'll again go under-rostered based on his lack of actual production. It's hard to ignore his skill set and the usage he received last week. He makes for an incredible bounce-back candidate, especially in lineups that are stud heavy and require a true punt at the wide receiver position.
WR Gabe Davis, Bills ($6,500 FD/$6,400 DK)
Gave Davis has a wild range of outcomes in this Bills' offense. He seems to get 5-7 targets every week which could result in anything from 6 to 35 fantasy points. Since the Bills' bye three weeks ago, Davis has been quiet on his targets. He gets the Vikings' 25th-ranked defense in terms of fantasy points allowed to wide receivers, a perfect matchup for him to exploit. Given the uncertainty of the Bills' quarterback situation, I think he'll be extremely under-rostered relative to his odds of hitting his ceiling performance in this game. I don't even mind firing him up if Case Keenum plays, though it's a stronger play if Josh Allen is active.