Scott Barrett's Week 1 Sunday Update

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Scott Barrett's Week 1 Sunday Update

Hello and welcome to the Week 1 Sunday Morning Update. What is this article? Mostly it’s a follow-up to yesterday’s big DFS piece – Scott Barrett’s Week 1 DFS Breakdown. But this article should also offer some utility of its own for redraft and dynasty players.

Each week I’ll be breaking down the key injuries, news, and notes from Saturday / Sunday and will be updating this article up until kickoff (1PM EST). And we’ll also be providing a sort of TL;DR to yesterday’s big DFS article. Who are my core cash game plays? Who are Graham Barfield’s preferred low-owned plays for tournaments? You can find that at the end of this article.

Key News, Injury Updates, & Notes

Sunday Morning Update

- Huge news: Trey Sermon is OUT. He’s a healthy scratch. Raheem Mostert is now one of the best, if not the best RB values on the slate. Especially on FanDuel. We like him over Najee Harris straight-up.

- Zack Moss is also OUT. Devin Singletary averaged 13.0 FPG in the three games Zack Moss missed last season, but he has a number of things working against him: 1) he’s not the goal-line back (Josh Allen is) and 2) this matchup is still brutal. He’ll likely end up over-owned relative to his ceiling.

- Keelan Cole is OUT. It’s another small boost to Corey Davis and Elijah Moore’s target projection.

- Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Browns want to see how Odell Beckham (knee) feels in pregame warmups before making a decision whether or not to play him. Schefter also said OBJ hasn’t been practicing fully and hasn’t had any contact yet, either. So, if he plays, it’s best to expect a lesser role than if he were fully healthy. If he sits, it’s obviously a huge boost to Jarvis Landry and would make Donovan Peoples-Jones an outstanding leverage play off of the dearth of cheap chalk WRs on DraftKings.

- Per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Giants plan to “ease in” Saquon Barkley (knee). No surprise. While Barkley will eventually become a bell-cow again soon, we should have never expected him to play 80-85% of the snaps Week 1. 55-65% is much more likely. Keep in mind, the Giants have a quick turnaround and play on TNF this coming week so there is even less of a reason to really give Barkley his full workload.

- Barring a setback, Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (hamstring) is LIKELY TO PLAY.

Saturday Update

- Saints CB Marshon Lattimore was added to the injury report on Saturday (knee). He’s being listed as QUESTIONABLE. Lattimore is one of the best CBs in football, typically worth a reduction of about 20% off of a WR’s FPG-expectation if he’s shadowing. The Saints don't have Bradley Roby, Ken Crawley, or Brian Poole this week either, so if Lattimore sits they'd be starting Desmond Trufant, Paulson Adebo, and Jordan Miller. So, obviously, yeah, this is massive for Adams. He’s a must-play if Lattimore sits. And, even with Lattimore playing (through this injury), Adams is your best bet among the high-priced WRs. QB Aaron Rodgers gets a significant boost as well.

- WR Jamison Crowder is OUT.

- Colts QB Carson Wentz WILL PLAY.

- Colts OG Quenton Nelson WILL PLAY.

- Jaguars WR D.J. Chark WILL PLAY.

- Bills WR Emmanuel Sanders is LIKELY TO PLAY.

- Broncos OLB Bradley Chubb is QUESTIONABLE but LIKELY TO PLAY.

- Patriots WR Nelson Agholor is QUESTIONABLE but LIKELY TO PLAY.

- Chiefs S Tyrann Mathieu is a GAME TIME DECISION (GTD).

- Giants CB2 Adoree Jackson is QUESTIONABLE.

- 49ers DT Javon Kinlaw and CB Emmanuel Moseley are DOUBTFUL.

- Lions LT Taylor Decker is OUT.

- Colts CB Xavier Rhodes is OUT.

- Washington WR Curtis Samuel is OUT.

- Giants TE Evan Engram is OUT.

- Colts LT Eric FIsher is OUT.

- Saints WR Tre’Quan Smith is OUT.

Things I Think

I think this is a fairly gross week for cash. At least, on paper it is. Though Week 1 also typically offers the softest competition all year. So, if it’s just as simple as “letting the fish beat themselves”, you should do great. Otherwise it feels like the entire week comes down to a coin-flippish 2v2, hoping you get the right high-priced RB after CMC and the right expensive WR.

There are almost too many great and obvious plays on DraftKings this week. So I’ll be playing more on FanDuel this week.

I love the chalk this week, and the community seems to have done a terrific job on highlighting who exactly those plays should be. But, also, ownership projects to be so high on those guys that it’s a really great week to go contrarian.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire is still my favorite low-owned play of the week. Despite having the highest over/under of the slate (54.5), this game is still going somewhat overlooked, and absolutely no one wants to play CEH (projected at just 3% ownership). You can tell yourself a compelling story that Kansas City dominates this game (favored by 5.5-points), 50-60 combined fantasy points from Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce isn’t as necessary this week, and CEH drops a monster game (something like the 49.6 DK fantasy points Kareem Hunt scored in Week 1 of the 2017 season).

Otherwise, I’d look at high-leverage game stacks. Everyone thinks [email protected] leans as run-heavy as it’s supposed to. But what if it doesn’t?

Obviously, the [email protected] game is very sexy. It’s going to draw a heavy ownership, but you can get unique by employing the stacks we described. And those stacks, though seemingly counterintuitive, are historically optimal.

San Francisco has the 4th-highest implied point total of the slate (27.25), against a blatantly tanking and inept Lions team, but Raheem Mostert projects to be under 10% owned on both sites. Or maybe (less realistically), a healthy Jimmy Garoppolo, feeling Trey Lance breathing down his neck, lights it up with his YAC superstars.

The best GPP player in our Discord, Neil Ragland, told us he has started to fall in love with Jameis Winston for large-field tournaments. That’s an interesting, very unique play no one will be on, though everyone loves Alvin Kamara and Marquez Callaway, and Green Bay to outscore them. (Two very highly concentrated offenses.) That’s a high-risk play, but this is the sort of approach you should take, or thought process you should employ. Start with my core plays, and then get unique. Get weird. Try to tell yourself a story.

For instance, I really like Kirk Cousins-stacks this week. Obviously, Dalvin Cook could drop a 30-burger, but what if he doesn’t? What if this is a pass-heavy shootout? Justin Jefferson could eclipse 150-yards. Adam Thielen could score multiple touchdowns. Tyler Boyd could catch 10 balls. Tee Higgins could be the best value of the slate — he’s already close.

Graham Barfield’s Contrarian Angles

Overlooked Stacks / Games

- Kirk Cousins double stack with Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen or Tyler Conklin + bringing it back with Joe Mixon or Tee Higgins. Both Jefferson and Thielen are going to be sub-10% owned against the Trae Waynes-less Bengals secondary and provide leverage off of a chalky Dalvin Cook.

Contrarian Plays With Slate-Breaking Upside

(Projected ownership in parenthesis).

WR Terry McLaurin (6% DK | 7% FD)

WR Chase Claypool (2% DK | 2% FD) — My favorite run back player in Bills stacks.

WR Jaylen Waddle (6% DK | 6% FD) — Going overlooked in the cheap WR range. Preston WIlliams (foot) missing is another small boost.

TE Zach Ertz (4% DK | 2% FD)

TE Robert Tonyan (2% DK | 2% FD) — Good leverage off of Kyle Pitts on DK.

Chalk Plays (Ownership Projections)

DraftKings

1. Marquez Callaway, WR (27%)

2. Alvin Kamara, RB (24%)

3. Dalvin Cook, RB (20%)

4. Kyle Pitts, TE (19%)

5. Calvin Ridley, WR (19%)

6. Christian McCaffrey, RB (19%)

7. Broncos DST (18%)

8. Antonio Gibson, RB (18%)

9. Davante Adams, WR (18%)

10. Corey Davis, WR (17%)

FanDuel

1. Christian McCaffrey, RB (30%)

2. Dalvin Cook, RB (28%)

3. Marquez Callaway, WR (27%)

4. Alvin Kamara, RB (22%)

5. Stefon Diggs, WR (22%)

6. Antonio Gibson, RB (21%)

7. Calvin Ridley, WR (18%)

8. Davante Adams, WR (18%)

9. DeAndre Hopkins, WR (17%)

10. Travis Kelce, TE (17%)

Cash Core (DK/FD)

QB: Jalen Hurts, Josh Allen (FD)

RB: Christian McCaffrey, Alvin Kamara, Antonio Gibson, Joe Mixon (DK), Raheem Mostert (FD)

WR: Marquez Callaway, Davante Adams, Jerry Jeudy, Tee Higgins, Marvin Jones (DK), Elijah Moore, Terry McLaurin, Michael Pittman (FD), Rondale Moore (DK)

TE: Kyle Pitts, Tyler Conklin (DK), Logan Thomas, Travis Kelce (FD)

DEF: Falcons (DK), Broncos (FD), Bills, Bengals

Scott Barrett combines a unique background in philosophy and investing alongside a lifelong love of football and spreadsheets to serve as FantasyPoints’ Director of Analytics and Lead DFS Writer.