By Steve Grantz –
The NFL playoffs do not mean fantasy football is done, certainly not at daily fantasy sites like FanDuel. With four games on wildcard weekend, the choices may not appear to be difficult. Clearly, QB Drew Brees (NO), RB Arian Foster (HOU) and WR Calvin Johnson (DET), and the Steelers Defense are front-runners at their position.
But at salaries of $9,900 for Brees and Foster, and $9,300 for Megatron, picking up all three of those guys would eat up nearly half of the $60,000 salary cap that FanDuel offers, with 6 more positions left to fill. Not to mention that the Steelers D, coming in at $7,000 in salary. The same inflation that jacks up the price for clear favorites, also affects a budget position, such as defense. Only the Detroit Lions defense comes in at the usual bottom price of $5,000.
So the trick for me this week was to find value in all spots, starting with that defense.
The Cincinnati Bengals faced Houston just under a month ago, and managed to force four turnovers on five sacks. The turnovers might not happen again, but the sacks easily could, and that could mean points.
At WR, I am looking to Robert Meachem (NO) to provide some value. Lance Moore is out with an injury, and Detroit can do a decent job shutting down No. 1 receivers like Marques Colston. Jordy Nelson blew up against them in week 17, but the first time they met they held him to 4 fantasy points. So I am taking a chance with Meachem for $5,300 in salary.
On the flip side, Houston does not do a good job stopping No. 1 receivers, so I like Cincinnati’s A.J. Green, especially at a salary of $6,700.
Meanwhile, while Calvin Johnson may grab attention, Titus Young (DET) managed to score touchdowns in three of the last four weeks of the season. He had zero TDs before week 7, and only one by week 10, but managed to finish the season with six. For $6,100 in salary, I will take a chance.
At TE, I also went bargain hunting for Jermaine Gresham (CIN). Last time against Houston, he caught 3 passes for 45 yards. That would be 6 points at FanDuel, and I’ll take that over investing heavily in Tony Gonzalez (ATL).
I squeezed a little more out of the RB position, going with Pierre Thomas (NO) and Kevin Smith (DET) for $14,000 combined. It may be a shootout Saturday night, but someone is going to try killing the clock sometime. I’m betting one if not both of these guys can put up numbers.
That leaves me some luxury tax room, and I am using it all on Drew Brees. He may not have the dominant game he has had for the last few weeks, but I’ll kick myself if he does and I went with Matt Ryan as a bargain choice instead.
Enjoy the playoffs.