Buy Low Opportunities Heading into Week Six (Fantasy Football)
After twenty quarters of NFL action, the fantasy vultures are hovering at the top of their league standings, slowly circling all of the 1-4 or 0-5 teams with an evil smile. It’s no longer “wait and see,” but instead it’s become “act and hope.” There has never been a better time to steal players from your league mates. Week 5 is where losing teams become desperate and winning teams become sharks.
This may come as a shock to anyone that read my offseason content because I was not exactly the biggest Zeke supporter at his ADP. The season has gone about how I expected it to go for the aging Cowboy running back, but some of the overall output can’t really be put on his shoulders. Dak Prescott went down early in the season and the game plan in Dallas was slowed down and adjusted to fit Cooper Rush. The Cowboys have surprised a lot of people by winning four of their first five games despite the injury to their star quarterback, but Zeke managers can’t be handling things very well. If you took him in the first five rounds, there is a good chance you’re not doing well in your league, and the trade window is probably wide open. If you play in a league with a disgruntled Zeke owner, then he is a quality player to target. Dak will return by Week 7, and the entire Dallas offense should improve dramatically when that happens. More goal line opportunities and a faster pace should benefit the RB1. Jerry Jones is stubborn enough to continue to use him at the goal line to justify his contract. Tony Pollard is clearly the better player, but Zeke will continue to be the guy until even Jerry is fed up. If you can get him for an RB3 price, then he’s worth the gamble on volume and the Dak Prescott bump alone.
If you read this and said “oh yeah, that guy exists,” then that was the point. Mitchell has been plagued by injuries, but when he’s healthy he is a volume magnet and can be a total monster in Kyle Shanahan’s scheme. Jeff Wilson has done a solid job in his absence, so there may be people thinking that Wilson has played well enough to keep getting work. Kyle Shanahan has shown us time and time again that he does not care about that. He will start his guy, regardless of what happens in the weeks leading up to it. His guy has been Eli Mitchell at every turn. Jeff Wilson was on the roster in previous seasons, but he started Eli Mitchell. Jeff Wilson was healthy during camp, and he went with Eli Mitchell. Wilson was healthy in Week 1, and he still leaned on Mitchell until he got hurt. Fantasy managers that have him rostered may be sick of the roller coaster and ready to dish him for cheap. Go get him if you’re a team that needs some help to get over the championship hump down the stretch.
Every Rams running back fits the definition of “buying low” because they really can’t go much lower. Darrell Henderson Jr. looked like the guy in Week 1, but clearly, Sean McVay was trying to send a message to Cam Akers. That message was received because he took back the starting job in Week 2, but things have been a disaster ever since. Akers has only cleared 60 yards on the ground one time, and he only has one top-25 fantasy finish more than a quarter of the way through the NFL season. The Rams offense as a whole has been ugly, but at some point Sean McVay is going to have to give Darrell Henderson a crack at the lead role, just to see how things go. Henderson is a better pass catcher, and he’s already seeing the majority of the playing time. He’s played more snaps in every game this year, he just isn’t getting any rushing work. Given the fact that the Rams season is on the verge of a collapse, I wouldn’t be shocked to see McVay give the reins back to Henderson who has succeeded in the past. This possibility is more likely than people realize right now, and an injury to Akers is a secondary path to this scenario. There is a lot of season left still, but this backfield is being treated like a cemetery by fantasy managers. It’s Halloween, so maybe we should try to raise the dead.
DFS and Betting Targets – Weeks 6-8
Melvin Gordon – RB, Denver Broncos
The first week-to-week buy low recommendation comes from the team that angered the entire nation last Thursday, the Denver Broncos. That disgusting display of football should never be forgotten, but Melvin Gordon’s usage went under the radar. He saw 18 touches in the first post-Javonte game, and he’s the clear goal line back as long as he stays upright. The Broncos square off with the Chargers in Week 6, who have allowed the most fantasy points to opposing running backs in the NFL. Gordon is going to be a lock for 20+ touches unless the game gets out of hand, and I’m confidently firing up his touchdown props on the sportsbooks. Volume matters most in fantasy football, even if your offense can barely entertain Amazon Prime viewers on a random Thursday night.
This probably doesn’t count as a buy low, given that Evans is such a stud year in and year out. Since these last two recommendations are more geared towards the short-term windows, I think it’s important to highlight Evans as a potential explosion candidate here. He’s far and away the top target for Tom Brady, and he squares off with the Steelers, Panthers, and Ravens over the next three weeks. The Steelers rank dead last against opposing fantasy receivers, and the Ravens are right behind them at number three. The Panthers have more of a “middle-of-the-road” secondary, but the general offensive mismatch should still lead to plenty of work for Evans. All he has done through his career is produce with consistency, and he has a short window here to win you a DFS tournament or clear his player props with ease.