NFL Wild Card Value Picks

Quarterback

With a small slate of games this weekend you’re quarterback choices are limited. So let’s run through the matchups. Houston and Kansas City has all the makings of a low scoring game. These are two defensive dominated teams and this matchup should be low scoring and slow paced, not places of high value for Fantasy NFL contests. Same can be said about Minnesota and Seattle. While Seattle’s offense is explosive, we saw what they did against the strong defensive front of the Cardinals last weekend, I’m saving my quarterback pick for an easier matchup.

The weakest pass defense of the weekend is by far the Steelers, but with the Bengals current quarterback situation, its hard to say anything for sure. In all likelihood AJ McCarron will be taking the field, but there is the small chance Andy Dalton will return for the game. Either way, they both should be able to provide great value with this matchup, just make sure you keep your eye on the injury report and you get the right one in.

Although the Bengals have a strong pass defense, it seems like nobody is able to stop Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown this year. I expect them to have a big game, but I also expect ownership to be very high on these two, so I’m playing the contrarian strategy and avoiding the Steelers stack.

Last we have Washington and Green Bay. This has all the makings for a classic shootout and I think there will be value on both sides of the ball. Aaron Rodgers has been very subpar this entire season, but he has been to the playoffs before and I think he will perform. Kirk Cousins on the other hand has been red hot and putting up big numbers, and that does not look to be stopping anytime soon. You’re probably going to find lower ownership with Rodgers so I’ll give him the edge in a tournament, but based on his performance this year, that may be a risky play.

Running Back

Our premium running backs for the week are Adrian Peterson, Deangelo Williams, Marshawn Lynch, Jeremy Hill, Characandrick West, and Eddie Lacy. As of now Williams looks to be out for this weekend so lets rule him out now (even if he were playing I don’t love the matchup). Marshawn Lynch will be returning but with the offensive efficiency of the Seahawks lately, its hard to say they will need to make much use of him so I am staying away from Beast mode as well. The Vikings may find it hard to pass against the dominating defense and will certainly run the ball a lot to Peterson, but he has not been as dominant this year as in years past and the Seahawks may shut him down. West as well is facing a tough defense, especially recently, so my recommendation is stay away from any Chiefs back.

So we are left with Hill and Lacy, both on the cheap end as far as premium running backs go. The way the Bengals use Hill and Bernard is very dependent on the matchup. They utilize Hill to run the ball up the middle while Bernard is valued more highly for his speed in screen passes and short drops. This matchup may be better for Bernard than Hill, and Bernard comes at a much cheaper price. Not a bad pick for this week. Lacy is the only premium back I like for this week. Like Hill, he could take a backseat position to Starks but I think Lacy has asserted himself as the primary back after early struggles in the season.

If you are looking for value at Running back however, there is a lot to be found. Starks and Bernard, as previously mentioned, will both only cost you less that $4000 on Fanpicks. Alfred Morris and Pierre Thomas both are a threat to accumulate fantasy value with their run and pass threat. The real value pick of the week is Jonathan Grimes, who put together a big game last weekend and comes at only $2700.

Wide Receiver

The same analysis on Quarterbacks applies to receivers as well. We want to stick with the good matchups: Steelers/Bengals and Packers/Redskins. Skipping out on Antonio Brown may just cost you a win, but I think there is more upside potential on fading Brown, especially for NFL Daily Fantasy Tournaments type contests. AJ Green should be able to put up some big numbers this week regardless of who gets the starting position at Quarterback.

I also like Desean Jackson or Pierre Garcon if you are looking to save a little money at the position. We know Cousins is going to throw the ball and we know he is going to throw it a lot. He may throw a couple interceptions but that doesn’t hurt his fantasy value too bad. It all just depends on which receiver can manage to get open between these two and Reed.

A good contrarian stack is Rodgers and either Cobb or Jones. They haven’t done much this year and are not on many people radar, but like I said before, the Packers know the playoffs. Cobb should get more targets but Jones is more of a long threat. The choice is up to you, I’m going Cobb.

Tight End

For me, the viable tight ends for this week are Jordan Reed and Tyler Eifert. While you can make the argument for Heath Miller and Richard Rodgers, I think you will find much more value with Eifert and Reed. Reed is an obvious pick as he has had some very big games lately and is arguably the top tight end in the league. However, that also means he is going to come with a high ownership level, bad news for a tournament play.

That’s why I’m going with Eifert. I can’t stress enough how weak Pittsburgh is against the pass as all of their games end up turning into a shootout. Eifert will especially benefit if Dalton returns this weekend as there is usually great synergy between the two.

Posted in NFL

Pittsburgh Steelers versus Cincinnati Bengals NFL Playoffs Fantasy Picks 1-9-2016

Game 2 from the AFC Wildcard playoffs will feature the Cincinnati Bengals at home to meet the Pittsburgh Steelers. Fantasy football draft GMs can tune to CBS TV on Saturday January 9th at 8:15PM Eastern Time to track the scoring results of their one day league real money NFL roster picks.

These division rivals met twice during the regular season with each road team earning the victory. The most recent matchup came on December 13th at Cincinnati where Pittsburgh was able to earn a 33-20 victory. Both teams were able to move the football. Ben Roethlisberger connected on 30 of 39 passes for 282 yards and a pic. A.J. McCarron saw work in most of the game as Andy Dalton was sidelined with an injury early. McCarron completed 22 of 32 passes for 280 yards with two touchdowns and two picks. A.J. McCarron had a 66 yard touchdown pass to A.J. Green but he also threw a pick six to the Steelers. It appears that A.J. McCarron will get the start with Andy Dalton relegated to a backup role in this game.

The Steelers are a team that many of the AFC playoff participants did not want to see in the postseason. They caught a break with a Jets loss in Week 17 to get the last spot. Pittsburgh brings in the number three rated offense and passing attack into the playoffs. The Steelers are also fourth in the league in scoring offense as they push across 26.4 points per game. Over on the defensive side of the ball they give up lots of yards but sit 11th in scoring defense by giving up 19.9 points per contest. The Steelers could be without running back DeAngelo Williams who has been listed as questionable with a football injury suffered in the win at Cleveland.

Cincinnati has not had success in the post season in recent years. They are just 4-4 over the last half of the season as they have lost to their playoff opponents and beat up on the losing teams they faced in that span. Overall the Bengals are second in the league in scoring defense by allowing 17.4 points per game. With Dalton missing due to injury the Bengals have slipped to the middle of the league in many offensive categories.

Pittsburgh Steelers QB

Ben Roethlisberger

Big Ben will be tossing against the 20th ranked passing defense in the Bengals that surrender 248 yards passing per game. Roethlisberger has hit 68% of his throws this season for 3938 yards with 21 touchdowns and 16 picks. He missed four games of the year due to injury and will be playing his fourth straight game since getting hurt. The Steelers signal caller has thrown for over 300 yards in six of his past eight games.

Pittsburgh Steelers RB

DeAngelo Williams

Williams has emerged as the Steelers leading running back with Le’veon Bell sidelined with injury. The veteran back has played in every game for the Steelers and had 907 yards rushing on 20 carries and 11 touchdowns. His 11 touchdowns were his second most in his career. DeAngelo Williams is rushing for 4.5 yards per carry.

Pittsburgh Steelers WR:

Antonio Brown

Brown led the Steelers receivers with 136 catches for 1834 yards with ten touchdowns. He is coming off a big game against the Browns last week with 13 receptions for 187 yards and a touchdown.

Cincinnati Bengals QB

A.J. McCarron

The second year quarterback will be starting his fourth game for the Bengals. He saw no action in his rookie campaign. McCarron completed 66.4% of his passes for 854 yards with six touchdowns and two picks. In the win at home to Baltimore last week McCarron threw for 160 yards and two touchdowns.

Cincinnati Bengals RB

Jeremy Hill

It is tough to back Jeremy Hill as he is forced to share carries with Giovanni Bernard. Hill has 11 touchdowns on the year but only 794 yards on 223 carries for 3.6 yards per carry.

A.J. Green

Green leads the Bengals with 86 catches for 1297 yards with ten touchdowns. He is averaging 15.1 yards per catch on the campaign. Green has a touchdown reception in two straight and five of his past six games.

NFL Playoff Football Real Money Fantasy League Picks

QB: Ben Roethlisberger (Steelers)

WR: Antonio Brown (Steelers)

WR: A.J. Green (Bengals)

Posted in NFL

Cincinnati Bengals versus Denver Broncos Monday Night Football Real Money Fantasy Picks 12-28-2015

It will be a battle between division rivals on Monday Night Football as the Denver Broncos will face the Cincinnati Bengals. DFS draft managers can tune to ESPN TV on December 28th to track the results of their one day real money fantasy leagues.

The Cincinnati Bengals will have to navigate through the remainder of the regular season behind backup quarterback A.J. McCarron. Andy Dalton with his broken thumb is expected to miss the remainder of the season. The Bengals have played very well on the defensive side of the football ranking tops in the league in scoring defense as their opponents average only 17.4 points per game.

The Denver Broncos will continue to start backup Brock Osweiler for an injured Peyton Manning. The veteran signal caller Manning has plantar fascia in his foot and has been ruled out and is on a week to week basis with the team. Like the Bengals the Broncos are strong defensively. The team is number one in the league against the pass and run and limits opponents to only 279.9 yards per game.

Cincinnati Bengals QB:

A.J. McCarron

The second year quarterback is completing 70.2% of his passes for 494 yards with three touchdowns and two picks. In his first start for the Bengals the signal caller hit on 71.4% of his throws for 192 yards with a touchdown. In relief at home to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 15 McCarron threw for 280 yard with two touchdowns and two picks.

Cincinnati Bengals RB:

Giovanni Bernard

Bernard has been the most efficient running back on the roster in 2015. Unfortunately for fantasy draft managers Bernard is sharing carries with Jeremy Hill. He has rushed 140 times for 680 yards with two touchdowns. Giovanni Bernard is running for 4.9 yards per carry on the campaign.

Jeremy Hill

Hill is in his second year with the Bengals. He had great rookie season where he rushed for 1124 yards and nine touchdowns with 5.1 yards per carry. In 2015 Hill is not having the same success. He has 180 rushing attempts for 635 yards with ten touchdowns. Jeremy Hill is rushing for just 3.4 yards a carry on the season.

Cincinnati Bengals WR:

A.J. Green

The Bengals leading receiver has caught 77 balls for 1206 yards with eight touchdowns. Green is averaging 15.7 yards per catch on the campaign which is his highest total since his rookie season. He had a big game in Week 14 at home to Pittsburgh with six catches for 132 yards and a touchdown.

Marvin Jones

Jones has contributed for Cincinnati in 2015 as he has career high 57 receptions for 745 yards and four touchdowns. He is coming off a nice performance at San Francisco last week with four catches for 89 yards.

Denver Broncos QB:

Brock Osweiler

The fourth year backup has five starts and one relief appearance for Denver. Osweiler is completing 60.3% of his throws for 1436 yards with eight touchdowns and four picks. He had a good game last week at Pittsburgh in defeat as he threw for 296 yards with three touchdowns and one pick. Two weeks ago at home to Oakland Osweiler passed for 308 yards.

Denver Broncos RB:

Ronnie Hillman

Hillman is sharing carries with C.J. Anderson. He has 183 rushing attempts for 711 yards with six touchdowns. He is rushing for just 3.9 yards per carry on the season. Ronnie Hillman has rushed for below 3.5 yards per carry over his past three games.

C.J. Anderson

The three year back has run 128 times for 552 yards with three touchdowns. He is running for 4.3 yards per carry which is a career low.

Denver Broncos WR:

Demaryius Thomas

The Broncos wide out leads the team with 93 catches for 1128 yards with five touchdowns. His 12.1 yards per catch average is a career worst and 2 ½ yards fewer than his average in 2014.

Emmanuel Sanders

Sanders have caught 67 balls for 969 yards with five touchdowns. His 14.5 yards per catch average is his highest over his six year career. He is coming off a great game at Pittsburgh with ten grabs for 181 yards with a touchdown.

NFL Monday Night Football Fantasy League Picks

QB: Brock Osweiler (Broncos)

WR: Emmanuel Sanders (Broncos)

TE: Vernon Davis (Broncos)

Posted in NFL