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Last week was very close to being the best week yet for Weekly Value-Based Drafting.

My All-Value lineup totaled 147.64 points, and just switching one recommendation got you up over 180.

That one switch would have been maneuvering my suggestion of David Johnson in for Brandon Bolden. I think I am seeing a new trend with the back-up running back getting more touches: they are better in the second week.

Thomas Rawls, Devonta Freeman, Javorious Allen, Todd Gurley, Darren McFadden, Chris Johnson and Charcandrick West all had better weeks in their second full game as the go-to running back.

However, there are not any solid candidates for such a situation this week. Denard Robinson would fit the bill, but he is banged up as well. Danny Woodhead and Karlos Williams will be taking over starting duties, but it will be the first start since the starter’s injury.

My receiver suggestions were on point last week, with the four scoring over 104 points between them (including top receiver of the week Antonio Brown). Both of my quarterbacks were in the Top 10 in scoring and both tight ends finished in the Top 8.

So with no trend going in any player’s way, I will stick with the hot hands.

As usual these prices and projections are for the Fan Duel style of play, but I have thrown in a few Draft Kings nuggets as well. The Value Factor (VF) is a quantity of the player’s projected points against the cost to put him on your roster.

Value-Based Drafting Targets

Value of the Week : David Johnson, VF : 4.00

Since taking over the starting role three weeks ago, David Johnson has at least 24 touches, and no less than 120 total yards a game. He has totaled 472 yards, four touchdowns and 11 catches over that three game stretch.

That stretch ranks up there with any back in the league right now, and this week he gets a Green Bay defense giving up over four and a half yards per carry. I have him projected as the clear cut top-scoring running back this week and he costs you the 8th most money.

QB Values

Blake Bortles, VF : 3.77

Cam Newton, VF : 3.88

The New Orleans Saints have a chance to be the worst pass defense in the history of football. Blake Bortles has vaulted himself into elite Fantasy status at the quarterback position. That is a combination for a huge game and he is my top projected quarterback this week.

I have Cam Newton not far behind Bortles because Atlanta is not exactly the Legion of Boom either. I don’t think he can replicate last week, but he will be worth the elite price you have to pay for him.

I also like Tyrod Taylor on Draft Kings at only $5,500. The Cowboys pass rush is a speed rush, so Taylor could find some running lanes on pass plays.

RB Values

Latavius Murray, VF : 4.35

DeAngelo Williams, VF : 4.74

Frank Gore, VF : 4.84

Charcandrick West, VF : 4.84

San Diego gives up over 120 yards per game on the ground and they would have been gashed more last week by Lamar Miller had the Dolphins’ realized that they had him. I think Murray is vastly under-valued at only $6,100 as I have him projected as the fifth-highest scoring back this week.

Williams and West get two defenses that are not interested in stopping anyone the rest of the season. West has taken the majority of the touches in Kansas City and I have him projected as the fourth-highest scoring back this week.

Frank Gore gets to face the Dolphins, and we saw what Danny Woodhead did to them last week.

On Draft Kings, David Johnson’s value is even higher as he costs just $5,800, while Woodhead is a solid value at $4,400 in their full point per reception set-up.

WR Values

Antonio Brown, VF : 4.87

DeAndre Hopkins, VF : 5.32

Brandin Cooks, VF : 5.33

Larry Fitzgerald, VF : 5.35

Antonio Brown could cost $12,000 and he would probably still be worth it. I took him first overall in a season-long draft and people laughed at me. Considering out of the other options, only one is even playing right now, I think it was a good call.

I do not see Brown slowing down against a terrible Baltimore secondary. I have him projected as the far and away top flex scorer this week.

If you need an elite guy and cannot quite afford Brown’s price, Hopkins is $800 cheaper and I have him projected as the distant No. 2 in points this week. Cooks and Fitzgerald are both still target hounds with decent match-ups. If Brees does not play, I might stay away from Cooks.

Kamar Aiken is extremely cheap on Draft Kings and seems to be Jimmy Clausen’s go-to receiver.

TE Values

Rob Gronkowski, VF : 5.47

Ben Watson, VF : 5.70

With Danny Amendola possibly out this week, and Julian Edelman still a week from returning, who else is Tom Brady going to throw to besides Gronk?

I like Ben Watson if Brees plays and I love him if Matt Flynn has to start. Flynn will look at Watson as his safety blanket and it’s not like Jacksonville is a scary pass defense.

My All-Value Team

QB: Blake Bortles

RB: David Johnson

RB: Charcandrick West

WR: Antonio Brown

WR: Larry Fitzgerald

WR: Brandin Cooks

TE: Benjamin Watson

D/ST: Dallas Cowboys

K: Matt Prater

I would like to fit Cam Newton in with this lineup somehow, but it is just too hard without losing Brown or Johnson. I think the opportunity cost of Cam to Bortles is much less than losing either of the top RB/WR’s.

If Brees does not play, then I might finagle around with the third receiver spot, maybe going with Kamar Aiken. The Cowboys defense has been getting sacks and they have to be due for a turnover or two at some point right? I mean, they have only nine on the entire season and the all-time record low is 11.

If you are out of your season long league playoffs already, then good luck with your daily leagues using value – based drafting. If you are still in it, then good luck in your championship… unless you are playing me.

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Michael Tomlin

Michael Tomlin is an ESPY-nominated, former college football player who stays associated with the game through Fantasy Sports. He has been writing his personal blog, Dirkland.blogspot.com, for three years and it focuses on Fantasy Sports, as well as handicapping. He was born and raised in the DFW Metroplex, and he follows all of the Dallas teams, along with Texas Tech athletics and Manchester City F.C.
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