This is a weekly series where I break down the best contrarian plays for the upcoming NFL week. Im going to be focusing on high upside, low owned plays and pairings that could really pay off big for you in a large tournament. Major outside the box thinking, cheap pricing and upside is the goal
Last Week: The Houston D and Marvin Jones were our biggest plays with only our Flacco stack doing anything of note. Theres a ton of interesting value plays out there this week but not as many high end stack potentials (at least in my opinion). As always Ill give you my best off-the wall/higher-upside plays as we try to target those diamonds in the rough for tournaments
Derek Carr/Michael Crabtree
I love the way Derek Carr has been playing this year. No longer just a dump pass specialist Carr has been heaving it downfield much more in 2015 and the results have been good. Hes already thrown more 300 yard passing games in 2015 (2) than he did all last season and just put up a respectable 250 on the Broncos vaunted pass D. San Diego has been good against the pass this year but theres some holes in their secondary that Carr can without a doubt exploit and WR Michael Crabtree should be the one to help him achieve success this week. Crabtree gets the anemic Branden Flowers in coverage and might see a few more targets thrown his way this Sunday as a result. Crabtree has been the Raiders leading red target all year and so an 8+ catch day with a TD is not out of the realm of possibilities. This duo will be nearly non-existent in big tournaments.
Ryan Tannehill/Jarvis Landry
A lot of people seem to be scared off of Jarvis Landry this week due to his new head coaches focus on the run in week 6. Houston however has been getting killed by WRs this year and have the ability up front to completely close off the run game of the Fins. If that happens expect Tannehill to revert back to old habits quickly and look for his safety valve Jarvis Landry. Theres no doubt game flow could hurt this duo if Miami gets up early but that is hardly a given. Theres a lot of tournament potential here as both players have barely been mentioned all week or given much hype in the media.
Zach Mettenberger/Delanie Walker
Without a doubt the most risky of all my stacks, this duo does have some sneaky upside and a nice narrative angle to it too. Second year QB Zach Mettenberger should have a chip on his shoulder after being essentially thrown to the sidelines by the Titans organization this off season. Walker and Mettenberger had some big games last year and in this matchup versus the Falcons, who just made 34 year old Ben Watson look like Jerry Rice, you can bet Mettenberger will again be eyeing up his athletic TE early and often. This cheap duo could put up some decent numbers and be the shock play of the week for me.
Jordan Cameron has been getting consistent targeting in the 7-8 range every game and is also second on the Dolphins in red zone looks so far in 2015. Cameron scored last week and gets a Houston team who let the athletic TE Travis Kelce have his best day of the year versus them in week 1. Ive been waiting for a bigger breakout game from Cameron all year and hes had a few near miss TDs/big plays in numerous games already. I think this is the week he turns those misses into makes and ends up being a great fantasy play, hes great value.
With the Skins passing back Chris Thompson ruled out the news out of Washington is that Matt Jones will be handling passing downs again and acting as the change of pace back. This is great news for Jones as he gets a soft Tampa defense this week and could easily turn this opportunity into another big game. We are all familiar with Jones aggressive running style thus far and also know the Skins coaching staff wont hesitate to give him more carries if hes going well. At near min-price everywhere Jones looks like a great tournament gamble to me at RB.
While Duke Johnson didnt exactly set the world on fire last week against Denver he has been seeing a lot more field of late and could be a decent tournament play on full PPR sites this weekend. Johnson is playing St. Louis who is tough against the rush but has allowed a lot of receptions to the RB position (6 per game). With the Browns projected as big dogs in this game you could see Johnson used lot out in space and in the pass game and finish this game with over 5 receptions. Either way I think this game sets up as a great shot for the Duke to get a lot of work as I dont see either of Clevelands power runners being very effective against the Rams. Hes a great tournament target and could produce some serious volume as a receiver.
If you like targeting talented players who have massive upside than Green-Beckham is for you this week. Beckham is an impressive physical specimen who had some troubles in college but flashed monster potential both as a prospect and in some limited preseason action this year as well. So far DGB has merely been a red zone specialist for the Titans but will see an expanded role for TENN week 7 due to an injury to Harry Douglas. The game flow could also help Beckham as TENN is projected as big dogs and garbage time receptions could pad his total. A great min pried talent to target if you need a salary saver for week 7.
KC Chiefs (if Big Ben sits)
I know people were excited by seeing Martavis Bryant run for a billion yard TD last week but guess what, that TD was all Bryant and came in garbage time with the Cardinals going for broke to stop the run. Landry Jones was really really ineffective this preseason (Id know cause I played him in DFS a lot) and isnt the upgrade some people seem to think he is over Michael Vick. This game is in Arrowhead which is notoriously tough for opposing teams to play in and not a great place for Jones to be making his first NFL start. The Chiefs have been brutal this year but still have the talent to rise up and make big plays on defense, much like the Dolphins did last week. Dont be shocked if the Steelers win streak comes crashing down on the back of some Chief sacks and pick-6s.