Week 9 DraftKings Optimal Plays

Week 9 DraftKings Optimal Plays

By Jonathan Bales (Daily Fantasy Expert), last update Oct 31, 2013

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Jonathan Bales is a DraftKings Pro and the author of the Fantasy Football for Smart People book series. His latest book, How to Win at Daily Fantasy Sports, is a data-driven guide to winning on DraftKings. He is also (unofficially) sponsored by GrubHub.

Follow Jonathan Bales on Twitter: @BalesFootball.

I don’t know about you, but I find it much easier to select low-priced players than studs. The low-salary options always rank high in regards to dollar-per-point, so it’s pretty easy to uncover value. Further, there are usually a handful of players who remain min-priced or close to it on the daily sites even after they’ve been thrust into the starting lineup or figure to see a jump in workload.

Meanwhile, the highest-priced players don’t always offer the best value. Because of their salaries, it’s often difficult for them to give you production that exceeds their cost. But when they do it, as we saw from Calvin Johnson last week, they have the ability to win leagues for you.

Hitting on your studs is important because 1) you allocate so much cap space to them and 2) they’re your foundation of consistency. When you pay for Aaron Rodgers, you expect a certain level of production, and even if he doesn’t return value in the traditional sense, it’s still valuable to know what you’re getting, with upside on top of it.

Choosing studs is particularly important in tournaments, and there’s no better place to play GPPs than at DraftKings. Here are my favorite high-salary tournament options at each position in Week 9.


QB Aaron Rodgers vs. CHI $8100

I’ll probably have Rodgers in more of my DraftKings lineups than any other quarterback, for two reasons. First, I’m finding myself paying up for quarterbacks in large-field leagues just because their ceilings are so much greater than even second-tier players.

Second, he has just the sixth-highest salary among passers. Even with some injured skill players in Green Bay, you aren’t going to find Rodgers-like upside at this price.


RB LeSean McCoy @OAK $7800

McCoy is coming off of two poor rushing performances, which shouldn’t be a major concern heading into Oakland. One of the hidden positives of playing with quarterback Nick Foles, though, is that Shady is getting more action as a receiver. He has 10 catches in his last two games, giving you a bunch of extra value in full PPR leagues.

McCoy is still an elite option, but now priced a remarkable $2000 behind Jamaal Charles. That’s a greater difference than that between Marshawn Lynch and Lamar Miller.


WR Dez Bryant vs. MIN $8900

Terrance Williams might have the best head-to-head matchup in all of football this week against cornerback Josh Robinson, but that doesn’t mean that Bryant can’t go off. After last week’s episode, it seems like Tony Romo is going to do everything he can to get the ball in Bryant’s hands.

Bryant is the top-priced player in a week without a lot of elite options at wide receiver. For reference, Jordy Nelson is the second-priciest receiver, just $700 less than Bryant.


TE Rob Gronkowski vs. PIT $6800

If you’re paying up for a tight end, it has to be Gronkowski or Jimmy Graham. Gronk’s stock is down, but he costs $800 less than Graham and it’s not like Tom Brady isn’t throwing to him. Regardless of how or who they’re playing, the Brady-Gronkowski connection is always capable of a three-touchdown outing. Some lower-priced tight ends might make better heads-up plays, but Gronk is a quality tournament option.


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