It’s been only two weeks and I’m already so hooked to football I can’t wait for the weekend to come with another bunch of games. With Sunday getting closer by the day, it’s time to start thinking about our next DFS lineups. It’s all about matchups in daily sports, but we should also pay attention to what different teams have shown already to get a sense of the chances and opportunities different players will have going forward.
At the tight end position, with the exception of elite-level players such as George Kittle or Travis Kelce, salaries aren’t that high. There is not a lot of risk involved in making the wrong decision, but even with that, here are three names you should avoid at all costs for Week 3.
You can’t afford a bad performance from anyone if you really want to win your contest, so fade these tight ends and look for better values!
Jimmy Graham (GB) - $4,000
Either Graham’s first-week performance against Chicago is being heavily weighted on his Week 3 salary, or DraftKings’ algorithms have turned crazy. Graham is the eight-most expensive player of Sunday’s 13-game slate. He had three receptions on five targets for 30 yards and a touchdown in Week 1. In Week 2? Doughnuts all around. And it is not because he wasn’t given chances. Graham was on the field for 72 percent of Green Bay’s plays on offense, and not even that helped him.
After a bad game in Week 1 from the Packers offense, it clicked against the Vikings and better performances from the backfield guys and receiving corps rendered Graham useless. It is fair to expect more performances like this going forward. Lower (even more) your expectations on Graham. The Broncos have not allowed many fantasy points to quarterbacks this season, and Graham is not a Yards After Catch poster boy. If Aaron Rodgers doesn’t put him in the right position, his value is ground-level at best. Graham shouldn’t even have half that price.
O.J. Howard (TB) - $3,800
It’s one thing to have a bad day, another one to look as horrifyingly bad as Howard has so far. The third-year player was one of the most hyped guys heading into the season, but after two weeks of playing time, we already know what is in store for him. Two games, 115 offensive snaps (85 percent of all plays!), five targets. This is not a case of being left off the field. Howard is out there almost every play yet he’s not seeing the ball at all (he wasn’t targeted in Week 2.)
We should have expected a bump down in usage given Bruce Arians history, but this is just too much. Jameis Winston is not looking for the tight end, Howard is not making anything out of his chances, and Tampa Bay could easily fade him. You should, too. This week’s matchup against the Giants looks like a do-or-die game for Howard. If he lays another egg, consider him done. And given what he’s shown so far, don’t risk getting a zero from him in your DFS lineups this weekend.
Eric Ebron (IND) - $3,800
We all expected Ebron to regress, and he is proving us right. Ebron’s true-talent is just not what he showed in 2018, and we’re watching it. First concern: usage. Ebron has four completions on just seven targets in the first two weeks of the season, only two more targets than Jack Doyle (also, Doyle has been part of 70 percent of the team’s snaps for Ebron’s 44 percent). Second concern: over-performance. Ebron has put up 5.6 YAC/R while he should have only logged 2.7. The 2.8 difference is the fifth-highest league-wide. Ultimate concern: touchdown-or-nothing. If Ebron hadn’t scored, his DKFP would have been 1.8 in Week 1 and 5.5 in Week 2.
Does all of that sound like a $3,800 player? Not to me. Not when there are much better values out there like Greg Olsen ($3,700), T.J. Hockenson ($3,500), and Will Dissly ($3,400). Indianapolis upcoming game against Atlanta doesn’t offer much promise to Ebron. The Falcons have only allowed 15.2 DKFP and no touchdowns to tight ends during the first two weeks of the season. Regression, timeshare, and a bad matchup are reasons enough to pass on Ebron this weekend.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is chapulana) 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.