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Week 9 DraftKings Tournament Picks

By Jared Smola | Updated on Sat, 04 Nov 2023 . 9:34 PM EDT

Stacks

Dak Prescott ($6,500) + CeeDee Lamb ($8,200) + Michael Gallup ($3,600) or Jake Ferguson ($4,000)

It’d be better if Prescott wasn’t coming off a 32.1-point outing.

But he’s still projected for a reasonable 9% ownership rate.

Of course, it was nice to see Prescott play his best ball of the season last week.

And now he’s in an excellent spot vs. a pass-funnel Eagles defense. Philadelphia ranks first in run defense DVOA but 23rd in pass defense DVOA. As a result, opposing offenses have registered a higher pass rate over expected against Philadelphia than any other defense.

It’s a big part of the reason the Eagles sit 31st in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs.

The Cowboys (surprisingly) went +16% pass rate over expected in last week’s big win over the Rams. And they’re a good bet to go pass-heavy again this weekend.

It’s tough to imagine Prescott having a tournament-winning performance without a big game from Lamb, who’s racked up 21 targets on a 33% share over the last two games.

But this is a spot where it probably makes sense to double stack Prescott.

Gallup is very cheap for a WR who saw 10 targets just two weeks ago and is averaging 5.0 targets per game on the season. Philly’s outside CBs, Darius Slay and James Bradberry, have both struggled for much of the year.

Ferguson hit pay dirt last week and remains a relatively strong TD bet based on his usage. He ranks third among all TEs in red-zone targets.

The Eagles rank dead last in TE coverage DVOA and 19th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to TEs.

Eagles WR A.J. Brown ($8,600) and TE Dallas Goedert ($4,800) are strong runbacks in Prescott stacks.

Bryce Young ($5,100) + Adam Thielen ($7,500)

Stacking Colts games has been a profitable move this year.

Indianapolis has a fast-paced offense and a subpar defense.

The result has been 53.8 points per game in Colts contests – second most league-wide.

Colts opponents are averaging the most plays and points per game. And Indianapolis ranks 29th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs; 22nd vs. WRs.

It’s a nice spot for this Panthers passing game, especially with Young coming off the best game of his rookie season. He posted season highs with:

  • 7.6 yards per attempt
  • 8.2 adjusted yards per attempt
  • 103.6 QB Rating
  • 68.6 Pro Football Focus passing grade

Carolina also went +6% pass rate over expected in that game, the first with OC Thomas Brown calling plays. The Panthers were -2% pass rate over expected across the first five games. They might be ready to take the training wheels off Young.

Paying $7,500 for Thielen admittedly doesn’t feel good. But if Young delivers a tournament-winning score, it’s tough to see Thielen not being a huge part of it. Plus, he’s already scored 30+ DK points three times this season.

You can also consider WR Jonathan Mingo ($3,400) on Young teams. The rookie has seen his usage shift lately, with his average target depth dropping from 11.8 yards over the first three games to 9.0 over the last three.

The result: A jump in yards per target from 3.4 to 8.7.

Mingo is an every-down player and already has games of seven and eight targets this season.

Also consider:

  • Derek Carr ($5,700) + Alvin Kamara ($8,100) + Chris Olave ($6,300)
  • Sam Howell ($5,800) + Terry McLaurin ($5,600) + Jahan Dotson ($5,000)

  

Running Backs

Jonathan Taylor, Colts ($6,400)

Taylor’s quiet second half last week might be a big-time blessing. It has him coming in at a very reasonable 15% projected ownership, despite being in the smashiest of smash spots.

Taylor draws a Panthers defense that:

  • Ranks dead last in run defense DVOA
  • Ranks 31st in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs
  • Has allowed 5.1 yards per carry to RBs

It’s notable that, despite getting just one carry, Taylor still played 64% of the snaps in the second half last week. And, for the game, he set season highs in:

  • Snap rate (61%)
  • Route rate (59%)
  • Rush attempt share (50%)

Taylor continues to trend up. And Sunday has the makings of a 2023 breakout game.

Aaron Jones, Packers ($6,200)

This play is best-reserved for larger-field tournaments. Maybe single-entry teams that are otherwise chalky.

Jones has totaled just 20 carries and 12 targets over his last three games as he’s battled a pesky hamstring injury.

But we saw him register a season-high 51% snap rate last week.

And then HC Matt LaFleur said, “ready to cut him loose” when talking about Jones’ Week 9 role on Friday.

If we can get 18+ touches from Jones at this price and 8% projected ownership, he has tournament-winning potential.

It feels like ages ago, but he went off for 26.7 DK points back in Week 1.

Kareem Hunt, Browns ($5,500)

Jerome Ford, Browns ($5,300)

This is an excellent spot for Cleveland’s running game.

The Browns are 11.5-point home favorites with a 25.0-point implied totaled – tied for third-highest on the slate – against the Cardinals, who rank 31st in run defense DVOA and 29th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs.

At least two – and potentially three – RBs will be involved on Sunday. That makes it a tough spot to invest in in cash games. But it doesn’t prevent one of these guys from having a ceiling game in this matchup.

Ford is a bet on passing-game production and big-play potential. He’s seen 4+ targets in three games this season. And we’ve seen him break off two separate 69-yard runs.

Hunt is a TD play. He’s handled nine of Cleveland’s 13 red-zone carries and four of the five carries inside the five-yard line over the past five games.

Also consider:

  • Alvin Kamara, Saints ($8,100)
  • Saquon Barkley, Giants ($7,900)
  • Josh Jacobs, Raiders ($6,900)
  • D’Andre Swift, Eagles ($6,600)
  • Bijan Robinson, Falcons ($6,100)
  • Zack Moss, Colts ($5,800)

   

Wide Receivers

I’ll be prioritizing A.J. Brown ($8,600) and CeeDee Lamb ($8,200) as my pay-up plays. Both WRs are in excellent spots for blowup games (as I discussed in this week’s cash-game article).

Chris Olave, Saints ($6,300)

I’ve played – and been burned by – Olave all season. I’m not stopping now.

He ranks just 35th among WRs in PPR points per game.

But the usage has been awesome. Olave ranks:

  • 9th among WRs in targets
  • 2nd in air yards
  • 12th in expected PPR points per game

A big game is coming. And Sunday presents a prime matchup for it.

Olave draws a Bears squad that ranks 10th in run defense DVOA but 31st in pass defense DVOA. That should push New Orleans toward the pass.

And the Saints’ 25.0-point implied total is tied for third-highest on the main slate.

Jahan Dotson, Commanders ($5,000)

I’m buying into a Dotson revival – at least for this week.

He’s coming off a big 8-108-1 line in last week’s shootout loss to the Eagles. Dotson saw 10 targets for a 19.2% share in that one, after drawing eight targets in Week 7.

WR Curtis Samuel, who’s averaged 5.4 targets per game, will miss this weekend’s game, freeing up extra action for Dotson.

The Patriots have limited WR production so far, ranking sixth in adjusted fantasy points allowed to the position.

But it’s not a scary secondary, especially after losing rookie CB Christian Gonzalez. 

New England’s other starting CBs, J.C. Jackson and Jonathan Jones, rank 110th and 56th among 111 qualifying CBs in Pro Football Focus’ coverage grades.

Also consider: 

  • Nico Collins, Texans ($5,800)
  • Terry McLaurin, Commanders ($5,600)
  • Michael Gallup, Cowboys ($3,600)
  • Jonathan Mingo, Panthers ($3,400)
  • Noah Brown, Texans ($3,100)

   

Tight Ends

Dallas Goedert, Eagles ($4,800)

Goedert was quiet last week while WR DeVonta Smith had his get-right game.

But Sunday’s matchup vs. the Cowboys looks like that one could swing back to Goedert as the No. 2 option in Philly’s passing game.

Dallas ranks fourth in adjusted fantasy points allowed to WRs but 24th against TEs. DVOA has the Cowboys 11th vs. No. 2 WRs and 13th against TEs.

Goedert has averaged 6.7 targets per game since Week 1 and has 28.7- and 18.7-point games on his ledger this season.

Also consider:

  • Kyle Pitts, Falcons ($4,100)
  • Jake Ferguson, Cowboys ($4,000)
  • David Njoku, Browns ($3,800)
  • Luke Musgrave, Packers ($3,300)
  • Michael Mayer, Raiders ($2,800)

 

Defense/Special Teams

Patriots ($2,900)

Packers ($2,800)

Rams ($2,600)

Giants ($2,300)

Jared Smola Author Image
Jared Smola, Lead Analyst
Jared has been with Draft Sharks since 2007. He’s now Lead Analyst, heading up the preseason and weekly projections that fuel your Draft War Room and My Team tools. He currently ranks 1st among 133 analysts in draft rankings accuracy.
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