It’s getting harder to gain an edge in daily fantasy football
with more research tools and advanced statistics.Similar research processes lead many daily players to the same plays each given week.Last week Denico Autry Jersey , DailyRoto’s Colin Drew won more than $250,000 using a lineup optimizer to identify pivots — key spots to use players who won’t be widely owned in large tournaments. Pivoting away from popular players and toward alternatives in a similar price range lets fantasy owners differentiate their lineups, distinctions that become important when trying to break away from the pack in large tournament fields.Drew’s highest scoring lineup featured Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers at just 3 percent ownership, stacked with Packers wideouts Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. This trio was a profitable pivot from the more popular stacks in the Steelers-Falcons game.In Week 6, one of the league’s top tight ends and a certain defense are being priced reasonably across daily fantasy platforms and will likely prove to be popular. If fantasy owners dig a bit deeper, they can find alternatives that are also enticing.PIVOT: ERIC EBRON TO CAMERON BRATEThus far, the Colts tight end Ebron leads all tight ends with 12 red zone targets and has scored more DraftKings fantasy points than any player at the position over the last three weeks, since teammate Jack Doyle went down. During that span, Ebron has garnered the third-highest target share of any TE and the second most targets overall. This week, he faces a Jets defense that ranks 20th against the TE according to Football Outsiders’ defense-adjusted value over average (DVOA) metric, although they have only allowed 33.4 yards per game to the position.Due to Ebron’s heavy usage, especially down by the goal line, he will inevitably be popular this week. There’s a strong case for using Tampa Bay’s Cameron Brate instead.Brate is cheaper across the industry and will be squaring off against a Falcons team that has been playing in shootouts — nearly 60 total points have been scored on average in Atlanta’s games. Atlanta has a high-powered offense and its already mediocre defense lost safety Keanu Neal and linebacker Deion Jones for the season.The Bucaneers have already switched to Jameis Winston at quarterback, meaning brighter days should be ahead for Brate even before factoring in the injury to O.J. Howard. According to Rotoviz, Brate has averaged 5.21 targets per game, 42.3 yards per game, 3.4 receptions per game, 0.5 touchdowns per game and 10.7 point-per-reception fantasy points per game in games where Winston has thrown at least 15 passes. Brate saw less usage in the five games where Winston did not meet that threshold, due to being inactive or getting hurt.Even with Howard on the team, Brate ranked 17th among TEs in red zone target share and 13th at targets at the position last year. With Howard out of the picture, Brate can reasonably be projected for a similar market share to Ebron — and Winston has shown an affinity for him. The matchup is nowhere near as favorable on paper, as the Falcons rank fifth in DVOA versus the position Nyheim Hines Color Rush Jersey , but they do not have a single linebacker who grades inside the Top 50 at the position in coverage, per Pro Football Focus. The combination of cheaper price and increased opportunity trumps the supposedly inferior matchup.PIVOT: TEXANS DEFENSE TO BILLS DEFENSEThe public is undoubtedly going to have interest in targeting a defense against the lowly Bills offense that has averaged fewer yards per game than any team other than the Cardinals. Through five games, the Bills have turned the ball over eight times, and the thought of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney getting after Josh Allen is tough to ignore. Allen has been sacked more than any other QB in the league and his 60.4 QB rating rates worst of all the 35 qualified signal-callers.Even so, defense is a tough position to spend up on in daily fantasy because that leads to skimping on offensive players who possess more upside. The difference between the Texans and the Bills is the equivalent of the pricing difference between Jarvis Landry and Julio Jones or even the difference between Nyheim Hines and T.J. Yeldon this week on DraftKings. There is no need to miss out on a true WR1 or a workhorse back because of a defense when the Bills legitimately find themselves in an ideal spot to succeed, too.Houston’s offensive line has allowed a 7.5 percent pressure rate, the fifth highest in the league, and the Bills convert pressures into sacks at a league-average 12 percent rate. However, the last time they faced a bottom-tier offensive line, they sacked Kirk Cousins four times and forced him to fumble twice.Deshaun Watson is battling a chest injury and a total has not yet been released for the game likely due to the uncertainty around his status. Obviously, his absence would enhance the matchup, but even if he were to play, the Bills have yet to allow 300 yards passing in a game and they have played Philip Rivers, Cousins and Rodgers. Since Week 3, Buffalo has allowed exactly one passing TD versus Cousins, Rodgers and Marcus Mariota and they have induced eight turnovers over that time frame. PFF grades the Texans offensive line as the sixth worst run-blocking unit and the Bills defensive line as the ninth best pass-rushing unit. The Texans have passed the ball on about 60 percent of their plays in two of the last three games, and Lamar Miller has been brutal (10th worst Pro Football Focus grade of any back with at least 50 rushing attempts), so there will be plenty of drop-backs for the Bills to get after the QB.If needing salary relief, or just simply looking to be contrarian, look no further than a Bills defense that is greatly underappreciated due to the poor public perception of the team. NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Indianapolis Colts have Andrew Luck healthy and throwing the ball all over the field.That’s more than enough with an injured Marcus Mariota stuck watching from the Tennessee sideline.Luck threw for 285 yards and three touchdowns and the Colts beat the Titans 33-17 on Sunday night for the final spot in the postseason as the AFC’s No. 6 seed. With the Texans winning the AFC South title earlier Sunday with a victory over Jacksonville, that left the Colts and Titans playing for the second wild-card berth and a visit to Houston on Saturday.”It’s been a lot of fun https://www.coltsfanshop.com/Johnny-Unitas-Jersey ,” Luck said. “It’s been a journey, that’s for sure. I think what this team is doing is enjoying the journey.”Luck remained perfect against Tennessee, notching his 11th victory for the most wins by a quarterback since at least 1970 to win his first 11 starts against one franchise. He helped the Colts (10-6) — under first-year coach Frank Reich — end their postseason drought by winning for the ninth time in 10 games after a 1-5 start.”I mean you’re 1-5, and that’s special,” Reich said. “It not only takes the whole team for 10 weeks, so that’s very special.”The Titans (9-7) snapped a four-game winning streak with Mariota sidelined by neck and foot injuries. They missed a second straight playoff berth under first-year coach Mike Vrabel.”We made a decision that Marcus wasn’t going to play tonight,” said Vrabel, who gave no details on when the decision not to start Mariota was made nor the seriousness of his injury. “We’ll continue to evaluate him and try to worry about his health and every one of those guys’ health — Marcus included.”The Colts intercepted two of Blaine Gabbert’s passes in the final 9:05 to finish off their 13th win in the last 15 games in the series.Marlon Mack ran for 119 yards and a TD for the Colts. Adam Vinatieri kicked field goals of 53 and 25 yards. The NFL’s oldest active player missed his final extra point.Derrick Henry, who took the Titans’ first offensive snap out of the wildcat, finished with 93 yards.Tennessee was missing three defensive starters with four-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Jurrell Casey placed on injured reserve Monday and linebacker Brian Orakpo scratched for a third straight game. That left the Titans unable to pressure Luck even with the Colts missing center Ryan Kelly because of a neck injury.And Luck simply shredded a Tennessee defense that came in as the NFL’s No. 2 scoring defense giving up just 18 points a game and sixth against the pass.He drove the Colts 92 yards before hitting Dontrelle Inman with an 11-yard TD pass and finished off a 90-play drive that used up nearly 10 minutes with a 9-yard pass to Eric Ebron. That left the Colts up 14-0, having held the ball for nearly 17 of the first 21 minutes.Luck also added a 1-yard TD toss to Ryan Hewitt on the opening drive of the third quarter for a 24-10 lead.”The most satisfying thing is to walk in the locker room, look at your teammate and say, ‘We did it,’ and we did it,” Reich said. “Those are three of the best words that you can ever say to your teammate. To me, that’s really the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.”Titans linebacker Jayon Brown almost singlehandedly kept the Colts from putting the game away before halftime.Brown returned an interception 22 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter. After Adoree Jackson inexplicably grabbed at a bouncing punt that put the Colts at the Tennessee 9, the Colts had a TD run by Mack erased by a holding penalty on center Evan Boehm. Two plays later, Brown stripped Mack of the ball and recovered it.Ryan Succop kicked a 38-yard field goal that pulled Tennessee to 17-10 at halftime. Gabbert threw a 22-yard TD pass to Luke Stocker to pull the Titans to 24-17 late in the third quarter.INJURIESThe already banged-up Titans had tight end Luke Stocker leave with an injured knee early in the second quarter followed by receiver Tajae Sharpe being helped to the sideline with an ankle. Stocker returned. Sharpe didn’t.Colts defensive end Tyquan Lewis hurt his knee late in the first half and did not return. Colts receiver Ryan Grant hurt a toe.FLYING FLAGSThe Colts would have won by a bigger margin if not for penalties that wiped out not one, but two touchdowns. They at least salvaged a Vinatieri field goal after Jordan Wilkins‘ TD run in the fourth quarter was erased by a formation penalty. The Colt were flagged 12 times for 96 yards. The Titans, who came in as the NFL’s least penalized team, finished with nine penalties for 75 yards.UP NEXT:Colts: Wild-card game in Houston on Saturday.Titans: Try to get Mariota healthy and find a better backup.
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