Welcome to Week 6 of the Daily Fantasy season. Pricing has stabilized as trends have emerged but there are still bargains to be found and even some higher-priced options that will go under-owned and can make a difference in your lineups. This article looks at some of the projected lesser-owned plays at running back who could provide huge boosts to your tournament lineups, as well as some trap plays to avoid.
LeSean McCoy $8,200 (Buffalo Bills vs. San Francisco 49ers)
The 49ers are atrocious against the run, and all anyone had to do was watch them last Thursday against the Cardinals to see what a talented back with pass-catching ability can do when unleashed against them. A talented back with pass-catching ability, you say? That sounds like LeSean McCoy music! Add into the mix a predicted heavy wind in Buffalo and the fact the 49ers are making the dreaded East Coast trip/1 p.m. start time, and McCoy could be in for a really big day. He’s spendy, but oh, so worth it.
Mark Ingram $6,700 (New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers)
Things started slowly for Ingram, and the Saints in general, but Ingram posted two huge games before their bye, and now he gets the reeling Panthers at home in a game that has shootout written all over it. Ingram is getting heavy workloads as both a runner and a pass catcher, yet he is priced well below the elite backs. Take the discount and run to the top of the standings this week.
Jonathan Stewart $6,300 (Panthers at Saints)
I think one thing we’ve learned about the Panthers offense this season and last is that for all of Cam Newton’s dabbing and Superman-ing, the real key to making things work is Jonathan Stewart. When he was out late last season, and again early this season, the Panthers’ offense really struggled to function. When he is in there getting his usual double-digit carries, the Panthers are pretty lethal. Stewart is expected to return this week and he draws the lowly Saints defense for re-entry. It’s a great spot for Stewart who might be forgotten across the DFS landscape and could kill this week at a low price and low ownership.
James White $5,700 (New England Patriots vs. Cincinnati Bengals)
The Brady Effect on the New England offense is mutli-faceted. Certainly Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman will be enjoying an uptick in production as the season progresses. But for the next few weeks, at least (until the return of Dion Lewis), James White is going to see a nice boost in his numbers. We saw it last week in Brady’s debut. White out-snapped LeGarrette Blount 38-31 and his combined rushes/targets of 11 was his high for the season. White caught four passes for 63 yards and figures to improve on those numbers as he and Brady get more comfortable together. At $5,700, it’s not hard to see White make value, especially if he finds the end zone.
Jalen Richard $5,100 (Oakland Raiders vs. Kansas City Chiefs)
Latavius Murray is going to miss his second straight game, which means the two-headed monster of DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard will again surface. Last week against the Chargers, Richard outscored Washington by five points on FanDuel, even though Washington had one more total combined rush/target. Richard is $400 cheaper than his teammate and is ever-so slightly more likely to go off as a pass catcher against the Chiefs defense. Both are in play again, but Richard is the slightly better option, based on the savings in salary.
Ezekiel Elliott $8,100 (Dallas Cowboys at Green Bay Packers)
Elliott has been the man so far in Dallas, and he will get the rock plenty on Sunday. But the Packers are far and away the best defense in the league against the run, and with Dez Bryant a solid bet not to play this week, there’s no reason for the Packers not to focus all their energy on stopping Elliott and making Dak Prescott beat them through the air. At $8,100, the risk of limited production is too great.
Jeremy Hill $6,900 (Bengals at Patriots)
Hill is still the lead back here, but Gio Bernard is cutting into his workload and this is probably not the week to expect the Bengals to play from in front and work the clock on the ground. Bernard is actually a decent play in this game, but unless he finds the end zone, Hill faces a real challenge to produce points.