Week Nine: Safe Bets

Safety is the name of the game in cash games, but FantasyDraft pays out at least 25 percent of the field in every single contest as well, including tournaments. This should motivate users to lean towards safe options in all formats on a site that puts #PlayersFirst. Without the top-heavy nature of tournaments, single entrants do not have to go with a “YOLO (you only live once)” mindset in tournaments, but can play for a solid cash instead. That makes life a whole lot easier.

Here are the “safe bets,” or players who can be inserted into lineups without fear of a dud, for week nine:

Tyrod Taylor, Bills, $10,400 – Sunday will mark the return of Tyrod Taylor, who has been out since Oct. 11… and he’s way under-priced. For a guy averaging 21.59 fantasy points, he’s priced as if his name was Teddy Bridgewater or Matt Cassel. Taylor has rushed for at least 40 yards in three of five games and he’s thrown at least one TD every time he has taken the field. I think the rushing provides such a safe floor and, combined with the passing, his skill set provides so much value at this basement price that rostering him is a no-brainer in cash. Sure, this Miami team is playing better ball under new Coach Dan Campbell, but Taylor lit them up for 277 yards passing and three TDs in their meeting earlier this season.

Mark Ingram, Saints, $12,400 – Tennessee has allowed the seventh-fewest fantasy points to running backs (RBs), but mostly because they have shut them down in the passing game; the Titans have allowed the fewest receptions to the RB position. That means the RBs likeliest to have success against them are those that pound it on the ground. Four rushing TDs have been scored against the Titans in seven games and Mark Ingram has carried that ball at least 14x in four of last five games. Each time he has received that type of workload it has led to at least 18.80 fantasy points. Assuming Coach Sean Payton commits to feeding the beast at home, he should provide a similar total.

Jeremy Langford, Bears, $7,600 – Exit Matt Forte to stage left for at least the next two weeks for what is believed to be a “MCL injury.” Coach John Fox isn’t exactly forthcoming with injuries, so it’s pretty much all speculation at this point. With that being said, rookie Jeremy Langford will draw a start in the best possible matchup any back could ask for: the San Diego Chargers. No team has allowed more fantasy points to RBs and the Bears seem committed to the youngster drafted by the new GM Ryan Pace. If they allot him anywhere near a full workload, he should absolutely crush the price tag. It’s not often a player with this type of opportunity in this elite of a matchup comes along, so do not miss out or you’ll be sorry.

DeAngelo Williams, Steelers, $10,500 – So here’s a guy who ran for 127 yards and a TD in the Steelers’  opener then followed it up with a 31 fantasy point (due to four TDs) week two against SF. With Le’Veon Bell done for the season, it’s back to the lead role for Williams. Pittsburgh’s offense didn’t change much with Williams at the helm early on, as they rely heavily on their back and Antonio Brown. It’s what I like to refer to as a “concentrated offense,” meaning most of the production comes via just a few players. So as long as they continue to run this “concentrated” scheme, Williams should easily surpass value at a mid-tier price tag. I actually think he could be a top-five RB for the rest of the season.

Emmanuel Sanders, Broncos, $14,400 – Peyton Manning has been awful, but he finds ways to consistently get the ball into the hands of his WRs even if only on short routes. This has led to Emmanuel Sanders averaging 16.98 fantasy points per game, even though Manning has only thrown seven TDs in seven games. Vontae Davis will likely shadow Demaryius Thomas in the upcoming matchup, which means Sanders may be able to run free. Having caught at least six passes in four of seven games, Sanders is a “rock” in FantasyDraft’s PPR performance. To help promote even more faith in him, one of the games he failed to reach six RECs resulted in a 4-109-1 final tally. Yeah, he’ll be fine.

Antonio Brown, Steelers, $15,600 – He’s basically fantasy football’s top wide receiver (WR) with Ben Roethlisberger under center once again. We saw yet again the upside he possesses as he eclipsed 100 receiving yards for first time since week three. He’s going to see serious (likely double-digit) targets and Roethlisberger seems to always know where he’s going to be before he makes his cut. There’s nothing scary about the matchup with Oakland. Roster him and watch the magical chemistry between him and his quarterback (QB) that led to 129 RECs last season continue in week number nine.

Jordan Reed. Redskins, $8,400 – This price is absurd for a guy emerging as a true weekly TE1. The last time Jordan Reed took the field, all he did was haul in 11 RECs for 72 yards and two TDs. When Reed is healthy, he’s nearly as productive as any tight end (TE) not named Rob Gronkowski because Kirk Cousins simply loves him. Coach Bill Belichick usually looks to cancel out the team’s top opposing option and they could look to neutralize the speed of DeSean Jackson. If so, the opportunities should be there all day and there’s absolutely no reason Reed’s price should be this low. Limited production is necessary to justify the price and Reed carries infinite more upside along with it.

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders is a fantasy sports expert with over 15 years of playing experience. After starting several freelance fantasy sports blogs, Ricky moved up in the fantasy industry when he joined Going9 Baseball. He wrote fantasy baseball content and had a weekly radio spot on the site’s SiriusXM Satellite Radio show. Shortly thereafter, in early 2013, Ricky joined RotoExperts as a three-sport fantasy contributor, eventually becoming one of the site’s lead basketball writers. While writing for RotoExperts, Ricky was introduced to daily fantasy sports and immediately fell in love. With help from some of his mentors, some of the best DFS players in the world, he honed his skills and became the daily fantasy expert he is today. When RotoExperts created a daily-focused website called DailyRoto.com, Ricky was brought on as one of the main contributors. He still makes frequent appearances on the RotoExperts SiriusXM Radio show and on the FNTSY Sports Television Network, talking daily fantasy sports. He also continues to write for a few DFS content sites: RotoCurve and The Fantasy Fix. Ricky is a proud and active member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. He has agreed to be a writer and representative for the FantasyDraft brand and serves as an ambassador to the site. He has no more access to the site than the typical user. Don’t hesitate to contact Ricky with questions on Twitter @RSandersDFS.

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