It’s Week 12 and one thing daily fantasy football players can be thankful for is there are no teams on bye. That means a full slate of action, starting with the three Thanksgiving Day games. Injuries really reared their ugly head last week, so those losses will be felt, but there should be more than enough players in the pool to build what hopefully will be a winning (and profitable) lineup.
Week 12 saw some hits from my “Top Plays” list, but there also were some misses. The end result is none of these lineups likely cashed in any contest because of Ben Roethlisberger not needing to rack up the stats against Cleveland and Martellus Bennett basically being a no show against San Francisco. The unfortunate injury to A.J. Green also sunk these lineups from the get go. The latter was definitely out of our control so all we can do is move on and not dwell on the past.
Speaking of moving on, this week’s edition of DFS advice will focus on the Sunday slate of games, so apologies to those looking for guidance regarding the Thanksgiving Day matchups. There simply was not enough time for me to give those games proper analysis. So if you end up playing anyone from these games, I wish you the best of luck, although you probably already know to not use Andrew.
What I will be doing in this space is sharing my top plays for the week, a value play, and most importantly a lineup or two. I will likely be focusing on cash games (50/50 and Double Up) and not GPP (tournaments, multi-player) contests. My Week 12 lineups should work in both formats.
So let’s get into my top plays, value play and lineups for Week 12 shall we? As always any questions, arguments, or glowing praise can be sent to me via Twitter @fantsychillpony.
Week 12 Top Plays
These will be my top plays of the week. These are players who I will try to have in as many lineups of mine as possible. If I can, I will use all three in one lineup. A reminder for cash games: going with an elite quarterback is typically recommended. If you opt for a value quarterback he MUST meet value for your loaded lineup to be worth it.
QB: Cam Newton, Carolina at Oakland ($7,800 FanDuel/$6,800 DraftKings)
Newton hasn’t been the dynamic and dominant quarterback of 2015, but he has been picking it up lately. He also faces one of the more generous defenses to fantasy quarterbacks (top 10 in terms of fantasy points allowed) in the Raiders. They have been allowing 21.5 fantasy points per game, and with Newton there’s the appeal of his ability to make something happen with his legs. Only four quarterbacks have thrown for fewer than 250 yards against Oakland. Newton should be poised for a big, big game.
RB: Jay Ajayi, Miami vs. San Francisco ($8,400 FanDuel/$7,600 DraftKings)
Ajayi facing the 49ers should be a chalky play this weekend. The 49ers are last in the NFL in rushing defense and second to last in fantasy points allowed to running backs. Only two RBs who got at least 15 carries against San Francisco didn’t finish with 100 yards rushing, and one of those (David Johnson, Week 10) still did plenty of damage thanks to two touchdowns. Ajayi is the workhorse in Miami and will certainly be getting touches on Sunday. He’s already had several huge games and this dream of a matchup could produce another.
WR: Julio Jones, Atlanta vs. Arizona ($8,700 FanDuel/$8,500 DraftKings)
Julio Jones is Julio Jones. He needs no explanation for plugging into fantasy lineups. Patrick Peterson figures to see plenty of Jones, but with Matt Ryan likely to throw the ball plenty, there’s no reason to think No. 11 won’t finish with his normal numbers. Arizona has done a solid job on WRs to this point, but Jones is no ordinary wideout.
TE: Greg Olsen, Carolina at Oakland ($7,000 FanDuel/$5,800 DraftKings)
Similar to quarterbacks, tight ends also have enjoyed quite a bit of success against the Raiders. This bodes well for Olsen, who is one of the best at the position and clearly one of Cam Newton’s favorite targets. Olsen shouldn’t lack for targets since there’s a good chance a fair amount of points will be scored in this one. Oakland has given up touchdowns to Cameron Brate, Hunter Henry, Julius Thomas, Antonio Gates and Jacob Tamme. All of these things are not like the other, which is why I think Olsen is in a great spot this week.
Value Play of the Week
Marquise Goodwin, Buffalo vs. Jacksonville ($5,300 FanDuel/$3,600 DraftKings)
To afford some of the high-end plays mentioned above we need to dig deep to fill other spots and Goodwin fits the bill, or at the very least he keep it manageable. He is dirt cheap and is the definition of a Hail Mary play this week. Sometimes you have to hope a player gets used more and can make a big play or two. With a player this cheap you hope for a 3x value so if Goodwin can somehow get 10 fantasy points on DraftKings he will meet value. And again, the Best part is that his cost allows you to load up at other positions. Just be ready for the possibility of a goose egg from him too.
This week I am only posting one lineup for each site. Again these are lineups that should work well, in addition to encompassing my top plays for the week in some fashion. However, I don’t recommend only using this lineup. Find values and mix it up. Making your lineup your own is more fun and challenging.
This week I constructed a lineup I will be playing in both types of games (Cash and GPP) on both sites.
FanDuel Cash/GPP Lineup
DraftKings Cash/GPP Lineup
— 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.