Yahoo Daily Fantasy Football Primer: Week 7
Welcome to the weekly Yahoo NFL DFS Primer! This will be a weekly piece where I analyze high-dollar and value plays at each position across Yahoo’s NFL main slate. The focus will be on both tournament and cash game options as we try to unlock slate-breaking upside in Yahoo's unique DFS game.
Aaron Rodgers ($32) - After the dismantling the Tampa Bay Buccaneers gave Rodgers on Sunday, we aren't exactly sure who he is through the first six weeks of the season. But we do know we have motivated Rodgers going up against a very beatable defense in Week 7.
The creator of the R-E-L-A-X motivational speech has now come out and said everything is ok and his team needed a "kick in the ass." I firmly believe that will evolve into Rodgers being the boot and the Houston Texans being the ass this week.
The Texans -- after Ryan Tannehill took them to the woodshed -- now rank bottom 12 in passing yards allowed, touchdowns allowed and fantasy points allowed to opposing quarterbacks and are dead last in Football Outsiders' adjusted sack rate. Rodgers should feast on Sunday.
Matt Ryan ($28) - We saw last week what can happen with the powerful Atlanta Falcons passing attack when it is at full strength (or in Julio Jones' case, almost full strength). Ryan had season highs in touchdowns, completion percentage, passer rating, and yards per attempt.
With the one stellar week, Ryan took his team from 21st in the league in Net Expected Points (NEP) per drop back (0.10) to 13th (0.18). Another way of looking at that stat is he improved the Falcons' seasonal passing numbers by 40% just with the one performance. That's the difference Jones can make.
Matt Ryan has been amazing in games where Julio Jones has played more than 25% of the snaps this season:
With Julio: +0.46 expected points/drop back
Without Julio: -0.02
That's the difference between leading the league and being Brett Rypien.
— Brandon Gdula (@gdula13) October 21, 2020
Ryan's passer rating is also 4% higher in his career with Jones in the lineup, so as long as Jones is active this week, feel free to fire up Ryan against a bottom half of the league Detroit Lions pass defense.
Kareem Hunt ($28) - Hunt was game-scripted out the contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers quickly last week as the Cleveland Browns had to abandon the run and go long-pass heavy for about three quarters. It also didn't help that Baker Mayfield was under pressure and turning the ball over every time he took the field.
In Week 7, Hunt faces a much less intimidating opponent in the Cincinnati Bengals, who have allowed the third-most rushing yards to running backs on the year, and have been lucky to only allow four rushing scores.
As expected, Hunt has been the bell-cow since Nick Chubb's injury. He has gobbled up almost 63% of the rushing attempts the past two weeks and has seven total targets, which should continue or even increase going forward.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($17) - For Edwards-Helaire in Week 7, we get the benefit of the running back coming off a massive game after the next slate's salaries were already published.
Even though he failed to get in the end zone again, he played his regular two-thirds of the offensive snaps against the Buffalo Bills and had his highest opportunity count (rushes plus targets) of the season. CEH also toted 65% of the rush attempts, a number he has reached in all games save one this season. The touchdowns are coming, people. With this much opportunity, it is inevitable.
Edwards-Helaire ranks fourth among all running backs this season with 11 rushes attempts inside the 10-yard line, and with that opportunity at $17, he is just too cheap even against a tough run defense from the Denver Broncos.
Kenny Golladay ($27) - The man known around these parts as Babytron keeps on doing his best Calvin Johnson impression, quickly rising up the ranks as one of the top receivers in Detroit Lions history.
Most receiving yards through the first 45 games of a player's career, all-time in #Lions history:
1. Calvin Johnson: 3,071
2. Kenny Golladay: 2,954
— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurkeNFL) October 19, 2020
Despite a run-heavy approach against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, Golladay saw another six targets, bringing his total to 21 through three games. That puts him only five targets behind T.J. Hockenson for the team lead despite two fewer games played, and he averages 1.8 targets per game more than anyone else on the roster.
Sunday's contest against the Atlanta Falcons has a slate-high 57.5 implied total, so Matthew Stafford and company are going to have to be throwing to keep up with the Falcons. Expect Golladay to have a slate-breaking game as he faces the team that has no cornerbacks ranked higher than 32nd in Pro Football Focus' positional grades.
The last two games have been the Tim Patrick show for the Broncos as he has outpaced Jeudy in receptions, targets, target share, air yards (more than double what Jeudy has), average depth of target, NEP per target, and catch rate.
The truth is, he has been dominating all year.
According to NFL Next-Gen stats: #Broncos WR Tim Patrick
• 7.2 average cushion by players off coverage
• 2.7 average separation
• 13.3 Avg targeted air yards
• 16 catches on 21 targets
• 76.19 catch %
— Cody Roark (@CodyRoarkNFL) October 12, 2020
Patrick makes the perfect bring-back game-stack with Edwards-Helaire on the other side. If we assume the Kansas City Chiefs jump out to a big lead in this one (they are favored by 9.5 points), Patrick and the Broncos passing game should be the beneficiary.
Hunter Henry ($18) - Maybe we forgot since they were on bye this past week, but in Week 5, Henry accumulated at least seven targets for the fourth time in five games, as Justin Herbert has shown his affinity for throwing to the tight end position.
In fact, Henry now ranks fourth among all tight ends in overall target share. He now faces a Jacksonville Jaguars team that has allowed the sixth-most touchdowns and fantasy points to the position this year.
At just $18 this week, our projections peg Henry as the third-best point-per-dollar play at the position in Week 7.