Once again, my Week 4 Daily Fantasy Football (DFS) picks produced where it counts and hopefully you all joined in on the fun. Deshaun Watson was great, Ezekiel Elliott was great, Jarvis Landry was solid, and while Odell Beckham Jr. didn't blow up he was OK, and even Eric Ebron met value as well. The main takeaway is the core was strong last week, and if you included Sterling Shepard you should have been in great shape to cash in.
So let's try and make it three weeks in a row, shall we? A reminder, although you can use every player mentioned below in a lineup, you don’t have to. The core would be my only must-have locks each week.
For Week 5 we have some tasty game score projections with six currently over 49 total points. Thursday night has another great game, like last week's, with Colts-Patriots at 51.5 points. (Fading Thursday's game is not advised this week if you play the Thursday-Monday slate).
Dolphins at Bengals — 49.5 total
Packers at Lions — 51 total
Jaguars at Chiefs — 49 total
Falcons at Steelers — 57.5 total
Raiders at Chargers — 53.5 total
Rams at Seahawks — 51 total
Redskins at Saints (Mon.) — 52.5 total
These games should have loads of fantasy goodness so I would consider getting players from these matchups as much as possible. A ton of options (just two teams on bye), so ownership levels shouldn’t be as lopsided this weekend.
So, now that my synopsis is out of the way let’s get into my Week 5 DFS Picks shall we? If this is one of your first times playing DFS feel free to check out my "10 Tips to Win at DFS."
As always any questions, arguments, or glowing praise can be sent to me via Twitter @fantsychillpony.
Teams on bye: Chicago, Tampa Bay
Week 5 Core Plays
These will be my top plays for the Sunday-Monday slate of games. These are players who I will try to have in as many lineups of mine as possible. If I can, I will use three or all four in one lineup. A reminder that for cash games going with an elite quarterback is typically recommended. If you go value at quarterback he MUST meet value for your loaded lineup to be worth it.
QB: Blake Bortles, Jacksonville at Kansas City ($7,000 FanDuel/$5,500 DraftKings)
My riskiest QB call of the season, but I absolutely love this spot for Bortles. This game has a higher total with 49 total points, and it should be a shootout. The Chiefs' dynamic offense may get slowed a bit, but they will find ways to score. Bortles will be throwing plenty and will try and take advantage of the league's worst pass defense thus far. He has the weapons, and re-aggravation of Leonard Fournette's hamstring injury likely means more passing opportunities, especially in the red zone.
If you must play it safe Tom Brady ($8,600 FanDuel/$6,300 DraftKings) is in a great spot, facing Indianapolis at home on Thursday night.
RB: Melvin Gordon, Los Angeles Chargers vs. Oakland ($8,700 FanDuel/$8,600 DraftKings)
Gordon is a certified RB1 and this week he faces a defense that's allowing 114 rushing yards per game. Gordon is a large chunk of this offense and a red-zone beast. He also carries the upside of an Alvin Kamara and Todd Gurley with a $1,000 discount. Gordon is coming off of a 33.9 performance on DraftKings and is in a better spot on paper this week.
WR: Adam Thielen, Minnesota at Philadelphia ($8,300 FanDuel/$7,700 DraftKings)
Thielen will likely continue to dominate targets this week and the Eagles will try to be as ready as they were in the NFC Championship Game last season. However, Kirk Cousins has been playing fantastic, aside from that abomination in Week 3. If Dalvin Cook remains dinged up or doesn't play, and the Vikings' defense continues to struggle, Cousins will be throwing the ball a ton. That means force feeding Thielen, Stefon Diggs and Kyle Rudolph. This game may not be projected to be high scoring, but it certainly could end up that way. Thielen had 30.5 DraftKings points last week and continues to receive double-digit targets each game.
WR: Dede Westbrook, Jacksonville at Kansas City ($5,900 FanDuel/$4,700 DraftKings)
Since I like Blake Bortles, then by default his receivers should be appealing too. Westbrook also fits the bill as a value play. He shined in Week 4 with 13 catches for 130 yards, good for 25.10 DraftKings points. Facing the weakest secondary so far in the league should let him repeat, or even improve on last week’s success. If he finds the end zone he can easily hit five times his cost.
TE: Eric Ebron, Indianapolis at New England (Thurs.) ($5,700 FanDuel/$4,600 DraftKings)
He costs $1,000 more on DraftKings this week, and it makes sense. He is once again a chalk play but let’s eat that chalk if we are playing Blake Bortles this week. He is projected to be the fourth-highest scoring tight end, according to dailyfantasycafe.com and their optimizer. He is significantly cheaper than the top three options, so let’s go down this well again.
Value Plays of the Week
No value play at QB since Blake Bortles fills that role too.
RB: Chris Thompson, Washington at New Orleans (Mon.) ($6,100 FanDuel/$5,900 DraftKings)
T.J. Yeldon will likely be a chalky and popular value running back this week, and I can’t blame anyone for using him. I am going with Thompson however, as a more likely player to break off some big plays while getting plenty of targets. The Saints have been solid against the run, but Thompson is elusive enough to do some real damage in the passing game. His Week 3 performance was a dud to say the least, but he had 22.3 and 24.8 DraftKings points in the two games prior to that. Low ownership and fair price. Let’s go!
WR: Marvin Jones Jr., Detroit vs. Green Bay ($6,500 FanDuel/$4,700 DraftKings)
The Packers' defense has been surprisingly solid against the pass this season but the Lions are a pass-happy team and Jones can find creative ways to get in the end zone. He only had three catches last week, but is averaging six-plus targets this season. I think Matthew Stafford looks for him in the red zone. Jones is dirt cheap and will allow you to snag a nice expensive flex player as well.
— Written by Chris Meyers, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and a member of the FSWA. Meyers' work appears on many other sites, including socalledfantasyexperts.com. Follow him on Twitter @FantsyChillpony.