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Week 5 DraftKings Cash-Game Picks

By Jared Smola 10:29am EDT 10/8/21


This is a week to fill your QB spot last when lineup building. There’s no clear top play -- but plenty of options at every price level.

Jalen Hurts, Eagles ($7,000) - On the road against a tough Panthers defense isn’t ideal. But Hurts’ rushing production pumps up his floor. He’s topped 21 DraftKings points in all 4 games so far this season, averaging 26.8.

Dak Prescott, Cowboys ($6,900) - Dallas’ recent run-heavy playcalling is a slight concern. But Prescott is playing so well that it hasn’t mattered. He’s scored 21+ DK points in 2 straight and 3 of 4 overall. The Giants rank 29th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs. And the Cowboys’ 29.5-point implied total is tied for highest on the week.

Kirk Cousins, Vikings ($6,500) - The team Dallas’ implied total is tied with? Cousins’ Vikings. They should have no trouble scoring vs. a Lions squad sitting 31st in Football Outsiders’ defensive DVOA and 30th against the pass. Cousins is coming off a down week vs. the Browns but topped 25 DK points in each of his first 3 games.

Trey Lance, 49ers ($5,700) - If you played Justin Fields back in Week 3 like I did, you might have some PTSD when it comes to using a rookie QB in his 1st start. Unlike the Bears, though, the 49ers figure to take full advantage of Lance’s rushing ability. He ran it 7 times for 41 yards in just 1 half of action last week. The passing remains a question mark. But the rushing should carry Lance to a solid fantasy outing at this price.


Derrick Henry, Titans ($9,000)

Henry is seeing historic volume. He’s averaging 28.3 carries and 31.8 total touches per game. Both marks would set NFL records.

Don’t expect Henry to keep up this pace, especially with WR A.J. Brown due back this week. But he’s the safest volume bet in fantasy football right now.

Week 5 brings a pristine matchup vs. a Jaguars defense sitting 25th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs.

Saquon Barkley, Giants ($7,300)

Saquon is back!

The workhorse usage returned in Week 3. And the elite athleticism returned in Week 4, propelling Barkley to a big 29.6-point performance on DraftKings.

With 29 targets and 13 targets over the past 2 weeks, Barkley is underpriced at $7,300. The Cowboys rank a middling 19th in Football Outsiders’ run defense DVOA.

Samaje Perine, Bengals ($4,000)

It’s rare that we get a lead back for $4K on DraftKings nowadays. I’m expecting Perine to cede some passing-down work to rookie RB Chris Evans. But Perine projects for 15 or so carries and a few targets.

The matchup is good, too, vs. a Packers team that sits 27th in Football Outsiders run defense rankings.

Sunday update: With Joe Mixon expected to play, Perine is no longer a cash-game option. Damien Williams ($5600) and Leonard Fournette ($5,200) are the top cheap RB plays.

Sunday update #2: Alexander Mattison is now a must-play with Dalvin Cook inactive.

Also consider: Ezekiel Elliott ($7,000), D’Andre Swift ($6,100), James Robinson ($6,000), Leonard Fournette ($5,200)


Keenan Allen, Chargers ($6,500)

Allen remains too cheap for the usage he’s seeing. Among WRs, he ranks …

  • 3rd in targets
  • 21st in air yards
  • 4th in red zone targets
  • 9th in end zone targets
  • 5th in expected fantasy points

Playing a little over half of his snaps in the slot, Allen will see plenty of action vs. Browns CB Troy Hill, who ranks 43rd in Pro Football Focus’ coverage grades among 79 qualifying CBs.

Laviska Shenault, Jaguars ($4,800)

Shenault stepped into a more diverse role after WR D.J. Chark exited early in last week’s game, turning 7 targets into 6 catches for a season-high 99 yards.

Shenault is a safer target bet going forward with Chark out of the picture. And Sunday brings a plus matchup vs. a Titans squad ranked 25th in Football Outsiders’ pass defense DVOA and 28th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to WRs.

Kadarius Toney, Giants ($4,000)

Toney basically stepped right into Sterling Shepard’s role last week. The rookie played 78% of New York’s offensive snaps -- 62% in the slot -- and ran a route on 83% of pass plays. Toney turned a team-high 9 targets into a 6-78 receiving line.

Expect similar usage in Sunday’s game vs. the Cowboys, making Toney an obvious value at $4,000.

Also consider: Chris Godwin ($6,300), CeeDee Lamb ($6,200)


Tyler Conklin, Vikings ($3,500)

He didn’t light up the box score last week, but Conklin’s usage remained encouraging. He actually set a season high with a 73% route rate. And he saw another 6 targets. That brings him to 22 targets on the season -- 11th most among TEs. Conklin ranks 13th at the position in expected fantasy points.

He gets an excellent matchup this weekend vs. a Lions defense that can’t stop anything, including TEs. Detroit sits dead last in Football Outsiders’ TE coverage rankings and 23rd in adjusted fantasy points allowed to the position.

Also consider: Mike Gesicki ($4,200), Evan Engram ($3,200)


Washington Football Team ($2,300)

Washington’s defense has been a major disappointment through 4 weeks. Guess that’s why they’re way down at $2,300 for a home game vs. Jameis Winston and the Saints.

There’s still plenty of pass-rush talent in Washington that we can lean on. And New Orleans figures to be without LT Terron Armstead and C Erik McCoy on Sunday.

Also consider: Steelers ($3,300), Vikings ($3,000), Eagles ($2,200)

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