Annnnnd we’re back with this week’s DFS Optimal Lineup article. Week 8 has officially concluded with Pittsburgh’s comeback on Miami but not without some remanence of wisdom. Bye weeks are some of the largest speed bumps for fantasy coaches to overcome and this week is no different.

Atlanta, Cincinnati, the LA Rams, and New Orleans have their break and players such as Julio Jones, Michael Thomas, Cooper Kupp, and Joe Mixon are all benched.

Fear not fellow daily fantasy fiends, if you’ve been leaning on some of these players throughout the wager weeks, we at The LAFB Network have some help to supply.

Fantasy Football Week 9 DFS Optimal Lineup

Quarterback

Dak Prescott @ New York Giants – $6,600

Speaking of bye weeks, Dak just came off of his Week 8 bye right after his generous performance against the Eagles in Week 7. Philly was overtaken by Dak: he was 21 of 27 for 239 passing yards, 1 TD and a pick, along with 30 rushing yards with a TD. It was a 25 point fantasy game which is just under his 26.9 point average this season.

When it comes to QBs, the Giants are currently sitting 9th on defense against the position, giving up 22.1 points a game. Not only that, but they also give up the most yards per completion, 9.1, which leads the NFL. The 264.4 passing yards a game also make the Giants a tasty bite for Dak to sink his teeth into, so sign me up on the Dak attack.

Alternative QB – Gardner Minshew II vs Houston Texans

Running Back

Josh Jacobs vs Detroit Lions – $6,500

If we’re going to talk about sloppy defense, mentioning the Lions is a must. Right now they’re averaging 130.7 rushing yards a game to opposing RBs, along with a fluffy 4.7 yards per attempt. There’s something in the water in Detroit and I want Jacobs all up in it.

Right now the Lions are giving up 32.5 fantasy points a game. That’s behind the league’s worst, Kansas City Chiefs, by only 0.2 points. This has Jacobs written all over it because of his fairly low cost this week. The low cost might be due to the fact that Jacobs has only four rushing TDs this year but even so, his usage is a big role in the Oakland offense. So far Jacobs has been averaging 17.7 rushing attempts per game with a few receiving targets sprinkled in.

Austin Ekeler vs Green Bay Packers – $6,000

The Packers began the year with an offensive stopping ability, but throughout the weeks they have diminished into a mid-tier struggle. This would explain the 28.1 fantasy points they give up a week to opposing RBs, which Ekeler happens to be one of them. Ekeler has a unique quality about him that makes the matchups for Green Bay that much more annoying.

The Packers have given up 45 receptions on 58 targets to RBs they face. How juicy for our boy Austin Ekeler to just slip his way into your lineup. As I am sure you all are aware, Melvin Gordon doesn’t seem to be impacting Ekeler’s usage too much. Sure he takes the rushing attempts away but we all know Austin to be the receiver that chills in the backfield. Ekeler has 56 targets this season which leads the NFL and also leads me to place him in my lineup.

Alternative RBs – Jamaal Williams @ Los Angeles Chargers, Phillip Lindsay vs Cleveland Browns

Wide Receiver

Amari Cooper @ New York Giants – $7,300

Yes, this week I decided to go rich on my WR corps. Cooper is my first selection because of the pairing that one receives when playing the fellow QB. But more than that, Dak has been getting some primetime usage out of his reliable WR. So far, Cooper has been averaging 7.1 targets a game, along with 18.6 fantasy points. Cooper has been getting fed.

This plays nicely with the New York defense. Currently, the Giants are 2nd worst when it comes to fantasy points given up to WRs. They average 44.6 points a week, so even if you were to split that fat average in half, Cooper would still amount to a little more than his fantasy average. In addition, the Giants average 13 yards per reception to opposing WRs, just under Cooper’s 13.9 yards per reception average.

Tyler Lockett vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers – $7,500

Lockett is my second “big purchase” this week and that’s because of a couple of different factors. First, Lockett has finished six of seven games in double-digit fantasy numbers. The lonely week where he was left at 9.1 fantasy points was Week 4 against Arizona but even so, he was a perfect 4 of 4 for 51 yards. In a standard league, this may be boo boo, but when it comes to PPR it becomes slightly more bearable.

Secondly, Tampa Bay has been slapped around on defense when it comes to WRs. Currently, they are ranked 4th worst in total points to WRs with 43.8. The Bucs are giving up an average of 302.4 receiving yards a game, with an 11.8 yard per reception giveaway. Definitely some numbers Tyler Lockett can dabble with this week.

Danny Amendola @ Oakland Raiders – $4,700

Amendola has been very streaky this season but faces an extremely favorable matchup this week. Against a very good Vikings defense in week 7, Amendola finished with eight receptions for 105 yards, and last week against the Giants, he finished with eight receptions for 95 yards. This week, he faces the Oakland Raiders, who rank dead last defending receivers. There is no reason that Amendola can’t get at least another eight catches and close to the century mark for the third straight. If he can hit paydirt, then that is a huge bargain!

Alternative WRs –

If you don’t go Cooper or Lockett and decide to split some of your cash up in the RB position and spend a little more than I have. I would recommend maybe Kenny Golladay and Allen Robinson II to lessen some of the cash. You could also slip DJ Chark and JuJu Smith-Schuster to free up some cap space as well. All of these WRs have some favorable matchups.

Tight End

Evan Engram vs Dallas Cowboys – $5,100

TEs this season have been a tough cookie to crack. Some of the top TEs in the draft like Zach Ertz or George Kittle haven’t exactly amounted to their draft status, while new faces like Mark Andrews and Austin Hooper have begun to arise. Engram, however, hasn’t exactly slipped in his rankings but maybe took a step down.

The Giants have had this weapon in their arsenal for a couple of seasons now and without Odell Beckham Jr., there is no doubt more attention has been evoked toward our buddy Evan Engram. The only thing that has been missing from Engram’s stat line are TDs. He’s had the targets and receptions to be an easy TE1, but with only three TDs on the season, no doubt some numbers will be down. This week Engram has Dallas’ defense who have given up the 5th most fantasy points to TEs. Spend a little cheddar on Engram, you will not regret it.

Alternative TEs – Jimmy Graham @ Los Angeles Chargers, Jonnu Smith @ Carolina Panthers

Flex

Devante Parker vs New York Jets – $4,400

Ever thought you would think about playing a Dolphin during this laughable season? Ha! Me neither, except if that player happens to be getting some unnoticed fantasy relevance. Everyone say hello to Mr. Parker. For his $4,400 value, this could be one of the deals of the week. Within the past 4 weeks of football, Parker has averaged 14.3 fantasy points a game. That’s more than players like OBJ or Alshon Jeffery. It definitely helps that Miami is down a good amount of their games but with this week’s divisional matchup, Parker might be the hero to tie down the Dolphins’ first victory.

Alternative FLEXs – A.J. Brown @ Carolina Panthers, Frank Gore vs Washington Redskins, Curtis Samuel vs Tennessee Titans, Adrian Peterson @ Buffalo Bills

D/ST

Washington Redskins DST @ Buffalo Bills – $1,800

If you’ve been following my little trip down DFS lane, you might have noticed how little I saved for the DST. The Redskins defense perfectly taps my cap room for my lineup and I can’t say that I mind. The Bills haven’t been a top-scoring offense this season despite their glamourous record. They have been winning by the margin of a touchdown or field goal; keeping it fairly close to the chest. Buffalo has been reliant on their defense which has taken the pressure off of their offense. Last week the Bills suffered a devastating loss to their record and were brought back to the real world where the Bills are just the Bills.

Alternative DST – No other options if you have followed my DFS path

Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott. Photo Credit: KA Sports Photos | Under Creative Commons License

Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott. Photo Credit: KA Sports Photos | Under Creative Commons License

Thaddeus Kline

Author Thaddeus Kline

SoCal student with degrees in Creative Writing and Literature, hoping to one day make a little dent in history my own way.

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