If you’re a DFS player, you know that a successful lineup has to have a solid combination of big-name star power players that are known commodities with a few high-upside players that provide a little more bang for your buck.
If you pay up for a big name in your daily fantasy lineup, you definitely cannot afford for that player to put up a dud of a game in your lineup.
So here are the running backs that will likely provide some of the best and worst value for Week 9. (Values from DraftKings).
BEST: Saquon Barkley (NYG) - $8,800
Barkley is largely considered one of the NFL’s best running backs in 2019, and rightfully so. It is surprising then to see him come in this week as the fourth-most expensive running back - a whopping $1,200 below Christian McCaffrey - despite an incredibly favorable matchup against the Dallas Cowboys who have suddenly shown to be susceptible to the run. Add in Barkley’s consistent usage in the passing game and he’s an incredible value play this week with both a high floor and an insanely-high ceiling.
WORST: Christian McCaffrey (CAR) - $10,000
Speaking of Christian McCaffrey, there’s just no way to justify spending $10,000 of your DFS salary allotment on him. I get he’s having a great year in 2019 and that even in a “down” week last week against one of the NFL’s best defenses he still had over 150 total yards and touchdown, but until his salary comes down even modestly, there’s just no value to be had inserting him into your DFS lineup this week. He has a better matchup this week against the Tennessee Titans who are just league average at stopping opposing running backs, but $10,000?! Wow...
BEST: LeVeon Bell (NYJ) - $7,700
The Miami Dolphins continue to play with their eyes set on 2020, despite jumping out to an early 14-0 lead in the first quarter to the Pittsburgh Steelers last week. The Dolphins then failed to score the rest of the game and went on to lost 27-14. This week, it is the New York Jets’ turn to face the lowly Dolphins, and that likely means the game script will involve a significant amount of time running out the clock with LeVeon Bell. Bell will hear his name called early in the game to help give the Jets a lead, but he’ll then be the primarily player tasked with keeping that lead late. At $2,300 cheaper than McCaffrey and the 6th-most expensive running back available this week, he’s a good bargain against the league’s worst rush defense.
WORST: Chris Carson (SEA) - $7,200
The Dolphins might be terrible against the run, but there’s another team in south Florida that has played surprisingly well against opposing running backs this year, and that’s the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Tampa Bay is actually third-best against opposing running backs in 2019, and it’s not like they’ve just played a bunch of scrubs - they’ve seen Christian McCaffrey twice, Saquon Barkley, Todd Gurley, and the talented San Francisco rushing attack. When Gurley is held to 16 rushing yards, Barkley to 10, and McCaffrey to 31 and 37, it’s not a fluke. Chris Carson is a tier below those backs, so I wouldn’t expect him to fare much better this week when the Seahawks host the Buccaneers.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is cdunnz) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.