Week 4 of the NFL regular season just wrapped up, and that means Week 5 is just around the corner. As my readers likely know, DFS is the best version of fantasy football, and since DraftKings and FanDuel have released their Week 5 prices, it’s time to track down the obvious values and best plays.
Here are the plays that jump out to me for Week 5 DFS:
Jalen Hurts, QB, Philadelphia Eagles (@ ARI)
DraftKings: $8,100 (QB2) | Fanduel: $8,600 (QB2)
Jalen Hurts is now on pace for 225 carries this season. The NFL record for a QB is 176, set by Lamar Jackson in 2019.— Adam Levitan (@adamlevitan) October 3, 2022
A league-high 34 of Hurts' rush attempts so far this season have been designed runs. Lamar Jackson 2nd with 25.
No QB is running the ball quite like Hurts, who is averaging more rushing FPG (11.1) than every QB in NFL history. But Hurts hasn’t jumped to 2nd in MVP odds just due to his rushing, he’s also PFF’s highest-graded passer (85.7) – ranking 5th in total passing yards (1,120) despite ranking 13th in pass attempts (123).
And now one of the league’s best passers gets to face one of the league’s worst pass defenses, as Arizona is PFF”s worst-graded coverage unit (31.5), with every single one of their starting coverage players earning a below-average PFF coverage grade, except for Byron Murphy, who has graded barely above average (61.4). Expect Hurts to be the highest-owned QB of Week 5 given his stellar matchup in the best game environment of the slate (49.5 total).
Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns (VS. LAC)
DraftKings: $8,000 (RB3) | Fanduel: $9,400 (RB1)
We all know Nick Chubb is one of the most talented rushers in the NFL, and I’m sure he’s salivating at the prospect of facing this Chargers' run defense. LAC has given up the 3rd-most FPG to opposing RBs (29.9) and 5.4 YPC (2nd-most), after allowing the 5th-most FPG to opposing RBs (26.3) and 4.6 YPC (4th-most) last season. Needless to say, this run defense is terrible. And Nick Chubb is running incredibly well, averaging 5.7 YPC and posting a league-leading PFF rushing grade (89.7). He should be rather chalky in one of the best possible matchups.
James Robinson, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars (VS. HOU)
DraftKings: $6,300 (RB13) | Fanduel: $8,000 (RB7)
With #Jaguars trailing for entire second half Sunday, James Robinson's role was slashed. RB snaps:— Adam Levitan (@adamlevitan) October 3, 2022
* Travis Etienne 24 (14 routes)
* James Robinson 22 (9 routes)
* JaMycal Hasty 3 (3 routes)
Over the previous two games (both easy wins), Robinson had out-snapped Etienne 89-59.
James Robinson won’t see a ton of run in games Jacksonville is playing from behind, but that’s not much of a concern in Week 5 with Jacksonville listed as a 7.5-point favorite against the Texans. Jacksonville won their Week 2 and Week 3 games by a combined 52 points, and Robinson saw 14.9 XFP/G (~RB10) and 18.2 FPG (~RB5) in those victories. So, we can figure Robinson will earn a workload that’s better than what his salary implies in victories, but he also gets the bonus in Week 5 of a stellar matchup.
No team is giving up more FPG (32.8) to opposing rushers than the Texans, and they also ranked 2nd-worst in PFF rush defense grades (37.0), 3rd-worst in YPC allowed (8.2), and 2nd-worst in rushing YPG allowed (172.0). And this is far from a one-year trend, as HOU allowed the 4th-most FPG to opposing RBs last year (26.8). Robinson will see an RB1 workload in a great matchup, and I’d expect DFS players to roster him heavily for that reason.
Raheem Mostert, RB, Miami Dolphins (@ NYJ)
DraftKings: $5,000 (RB35) | Fanduel: $5,800 (RB32)
Over the last two weeks, Raheem Mostert has earned 64% of backfield opportunities, 69% of backfield routes, and 65% of backfield snaps. In other words, Mostert is the clear lead RB in a rather talented offense (even with Teddy Bridgewater starting) but his price on either DFS site hasn’t caught up to that reality.
For Week 5, the Mosteratti faces a questionable Jets rush defense in a game that should provide Miami with positive gamescript as 3.5-point favorites. We saw Nick Chubb go for 3 TDs and 32.3 FPs in Week 2 against NYJ, and last season, no team was worse at preventing opposing RBs from scoring FPs than the Jets, allowing a league-leading 31.5 FPG and 19.2 rushing FPG. This is a great spot to play an underpriced Mostert.
Tyler Allgeier, RB, Atlanta Falcons (@ TB)
DraftKings: $4,700 (RB46) | Fanduel: $5,700 (RB34)
#Falcons RB Cordarrelle Patterson is heading to Injured Reserve after having a knee procedure. He was dealing with it last week and played through it despite serious pain. Should return right at four weeks.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 3, 2022
Tyler Allgeier should pop from a points per dollar of salary perspective this week with CPat sidelined, given Allgeier has handled 60% of non-CPat backfield carries and has earned about 50% of non-CPat backfield snaps. But, I think it’s important to point out that Allgeier has earned fewer routes this season than Avery Williams, and the Falcons are 9.0-point underdogs to a tough Tampa Bay run defense (31st in FPG allowed to opposing RBs this season). So, Allgeier might project well, but his path to success will be rather narrow – a Falcons upset that includes plenty of positive gamescript. He’s shaping up as an easy fade if he winds up as a popular RB play.
AJ Brown, WR, Philadelphia Eagles (@ ARI)
DraftKings: $7,500 (WR7) | Fanduel: $8,000 (WR6)
I noted that the Eagles passing attack has an amazing matchup against PFF’s worst-graded pass defense in the highest-total game of the slate (49.5), which spells good news for AJ Brown. Since the start of the 2020 season, Brown averages +5.9 more FPG in games with a total over 48.0 (17.8) than in games with a total under 48.0 (12.9) – exceeding 27.0 DraftKings points in 42% of those games when favored (12 instances). Expect the Hurts and Brown stack to be a staple of Week 5 lineups in all formats with the Eagles offense looking unstoppable through the first four weeks of the season.
George Pickens, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers (@ BUF)
DraftKings: $4,300 (WR53) | Fanduel: $5,500 (WR47)
George Pickens saw 15 targets on Mitch Trubisky's 116 attempts in 3.5 games (12.9%).— Adam Levitan (@adamlevitan) October 3, 2022
George Pickens saw 5 targets on Kenny Pickett's 14 attempts, including penalties, in one half Sunday (35.7%).
We know George Pickens is a tremendous talent. And with Kenny Pickett as the presumptive starter in Week 5, Pickens’ volume may finally start to improve. In Week 4, with Pickett under center for 48% of the team’s dropbacks, Pickens posted season-high marks in targets (8), receiving yards (102), and FPs (16.2).
The Week 5 matchup against a Buffalo defense that’s allowed just 27.5 FPG to opposing WRs (6th-toughest) this season is certainly a negative, but the Steelers being massive 14.0-point underdogs should be conducive to garbage time production for the rookie WR. Double-digit targets should be on the table for Pickens in Week 5, and that should make him a solid value given his incredible talent profile.
Rondale Moore, WR, Arizona Cardinals (VS. PHI)
DraftKings: $4,100 (WR60) | Fanduel: $5,200 (WR62)
Rondale Moore (hamstring) made his 2022 debut Sunday:— Adam Levitan (@adamlevitan) October 3, 2022
* 65-of-76 snaps (86%)
* 47 wide, 17 slot, 1 backfield
* 33 routes on 35 Kyler dropbacks
* 10.4 yard average depth of target. Was at a ridiculous 1.3 aDOT last year.
* 5 targets for a 15.6% share
* Greg Dortch 16 routes
Rondale Moore is back, and he appears to have immediately taken over as the Cardinals’ primary slot player – a role which was worth 15.3 FPG and 12.4 XFP/G to Greg Dortch during the first three weeks of the season. So, just based on usage, Moore is an easy 3X value this week, in a game where Arizona will surely need to throw as 5.0-point underdogs. And keep in mind that while this Eagles pass defense is intimidating on the surface, they could very well be without slot CB Avonte Maddox in Week 5, which would certainly make this a strong matchup for Moore.
Khalil Shakir, WR, Buffalo Bulls (VS. PIT)
DraftKings: $3,200 (WR95) | Fanduel: $5,000 (WR75)
My initial read on the Bills selecting Khalil Shakir was that he'd compete in the slot. They're clearly developing him to play everywhere, but with Crowder now out and McKenzie w/ a concussion, Shakir might get some run there. Check out one of his comps from my prospect guide 👀 pic.twitter.com/p61EkaIpfL— JJ Zachariason (@LateRoundQB) October 3, 2022
Jamison Crowder is out indefinitely, and Isaiah McKenzie appears highly questionable this week with a concussion. That means Khalil Shakir could work as the Bills’ primary slot WR – a crucial note given Bills’ slot WRs have racked up the 5th-most FPs (110.8) so far this season. So, if McKenzie sits, I’d expect Shakir to be one of the best-projected point per dollar values of the slate.
But, if McKenzie suits up, then he’s also easily one of the top values of the slate, as he would have the Bills’ valuable slot role all to himself. In McKenzie’s four games with 5 or more targets since 2019, he averages a very impressive 20.3 FPG, compared to just 4.4 FPG outside of that split. Keep an eye on the health of McKenzie, as it will determine which Bills’ WR ends up as a screaming value this week.
Hunter Henry, TE, New England Patriots (VS. DET)
DraftKings: $2,900 (TE20) | Fanduel: $4,500 (TE32)
Here's the play Jonnu Smith (81) was injured on. Gets rolled up on pretty badly as he's pulling around the corner. pic.twitter.com/Js6CcSCZQB— Chris Mason (@ByChrisMason) October 3, 2022
Jonnu Smith looks very questionable for Week 5, and Hunter Henry would undoubtedly be a strong value if Smith sits. Since arriving in New England, Henry averages +2.5 more FPG in his two games without Smith (11.3) than in his 17 games with Smith (8.8). And this is a plus matchup, with DET allowing an insane 444.8 YPG (worst) to opposing offenses and 16.3 FPG to opposing TEs (9th-worst).
Could the NE offense be completely disastrous with Bailey Zappe as their QB in Week 5? Absolutely, but our data suggests we always want to look for a few solid punt options at TE in GPPs each week, and Henry appears to be one of the best punts if Smith sits in Week 5.