Welcome back to our weekly countdown of the best QB-WR stacks! There’s plenty of value on the table in Week 2, giving us plenty of good options to choose from.
The concept behind stacking a QB with his WR is simple; both players benefit from each completion, doubling the benefit of that play for your fantasy lineup. As Adam Levitan pointed out this offseason, 79 percent of the lineups that won DraftKings’ Fantasy Football Millionaire contests used a QB stack in their lineup. With the significance of stacking in mind, this article aims to highlight the best stacking options for Sunday’s main slate.
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Admittedly, this one makes me a bit nervous. Until last weekend, Ross’s career was mostly underwhelming. Furthermore, it’s hard to make a case for Dalton as an overall top-half starting QB. But I start this article each week by running all players and salaries through an algorithm that highlights potential value plays, and that algorithm flagged both Ross and Dalton as significant discounts in Week 2. Dalton and Ross are both coming off of the best games of their careers, but that’s an unexpected positive here. Generally speaking, managers know that players’ salaries rise after a great game, but since this pairing is still so discounted they might remain more under-the-radar. The 49ers were an average defense in 2018, so there isn’t much cause for concern in terms of the matchup. Pairing Dalton with his No. 1 WR Tyler Boyd ($6,500) is a reasonable option, but Boyd’s salary is more fair, compared to Ross who appears underpriced. The Bengals’ receiving corps dries up quickly after Ross, so he and Boyd are likely to continue dominating the targets. Ross was second in the NFL in air yards in Week 1. Additionally, both WRs could see increased target share with Joe Mixon (ankle; $6,500) injured.
The Seahawks allowed Andy Dalton to throw for 418 yards last weekend. Yes, that’s the same Andrew Gregory Dalton who has been the starter for the Bengals for the past eight seasons, who lost his only four playoff appearances and hasn’t returned to the postseason since 2014. Who’s previous career high for yardage, through 120 games, was 383. What I’m saying is this Seahawks secondary does not look good. Meanwhile, Roethlisberger and Smith-Schuster both have discounted salaries this week, especially Big Ben. He’s the 12th-most expensive QB on the main slate, despite one of the easiest matchups. Despite a reputation for poor performances on the road, Roethlisberger actually scored more fantasy points outside of Pittsburg last season, averaging 24.8 DKFP per game on the road. Smith-Schuster isn’t cheap, but he’s probably the best value among the top-tier WRs, and he has a case for the easiest matchup. I don’t have a good reason for why this isn’t Week 2’s No. 1 stack, I’m just a coward.
I’m writing this on the assumption that Antonio Brown ($7,000) does not play – I don’t have any more information of Brown’s likelihood than you do, but for whatever reason my instinct says he won’t Sunday. If Brown does play, that does sap some of the value from Gordon, but it also increases Brady’s appeal, and I’d still be willing to use this stack in a GPP.
For years, I’ve argued that tanking isn’t actually a thing in the NFL. Two years ago, everyone was convinced the Bills were tanking, and they made the playoffs. But the 2019 Dolphins might finally convince me that NFL tanking is real. They’ve traded away most of their best assets to stockpile future picks, and now they’re even letting sophomore safety Minkah Fitzpatrick “explore potential trade opportunities”.
Unfortunately, the Dolphins’ greatest strength is easily their secondary. But their offense is bad enough that it could come in dead last in total plays. They combine poor talent with turnover-prone starters, giving opponents tons of extra chances to make plays. With or without Antonio Brown, there is enough talent between Julian Edelman ($6,900) and Gordon to divide Miami’s attention and give both chances against the weaker Miami defenders. Brady is the fifth-most expensive QB on the slate – a full grand cheaper than Patrick Mahomes – despite the cake-walk matchup. The Dolphins gave up 59 points to Lamar Jackson and the Ravens last week. We don’t need to overthink this.
Maybe I’m just stubborn, but I firmly believe that Cooks is clearly the best WR on the Rams. That’s not an attack on Robert Woods ($6,400) or Cooper Kupp ($6,000), both of whom are also viable DFS options – in fact, if you’re going with multiple entries in a GPP, or looking for a double-stack, I would recommend getting exposure to all three WRs. But I don’t understand why it’s controversial to say “hey, this 25-year-old former first-round pick with four straight 1,000 yard seasons despite playing for three different teams is better than the 27-year-old former second-round pick who’s only topped 800 yards once.” All three WRs are very good! Cooks is just better.
So, after a down week caused Cooks’ salary to drop below Woods’, this looks like the perfect time to strike. And while Goff was underwhelming in the opener, he averaged 22.0 DKFP in 2018. How does one bad week make him less expensive than Jimmy Garoppolo?
1. Josh Allen $5,300)/John Brown ($5,200), Bills at Giants
These salaries were surprising. Allen has his faults – like, passing accuracy – but getting the 17th QB salary is probably taking things too far. He averaged 53 rushing yards per game last season. Even a bad passer can have a good fantasy day with that much ground production, and Allen isn’t all that bad. Brown is the unquestioned No. 1 receiving option for an OK Bills team and coming off a seven-catch, 10-target, 123-yard performance. They’re facing off against the Giants, who finished in the bottom 10 in yards allowed, passing yards allowed and points allowed, and might have gotten worse over the offseason. The Bills are looking to take advantage of Brown’s deep speed, as evidenced by his 133 air yards (14th in the league) in Week 1. This pair already connected for a 38-yard TD, and they’ll look for more against a significantly worse defense Sunday.
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