I love Thursday nights! Have I mentioned how much I love Thursday night games? The early start, setting your season long lineup early, having to make a call on a questionable guy scheduled to play on a Monday and your back up plays Thursday so you HAVE to make a call? Thursday nights rock! Yeah, even I can’t buy that line, I still hate Thursday night, except this week! This week there are plays to be made, so let’s dive in.The Thursday game between the Pats and the Bucs has an over under of 56, which is a great indicator for fantasy results. Part of that is that the Patriots are giving up points in buckets. The Patriots have given up a total of 128 points in just four games, they are averaging 32 points allowed and in fact their best points against was when they held New Orleans to 20 points and they were majorly angry after losing at home on opening night. They are coming off a loss again, but I think there is better balance in the Tampa attack and the result will be another high scoring game. This matchup is all about the Pats defense, even if they hold. So usually I’m playing maybe one or two lineups in this pool but this week, I’m playing a few and here is what I’m looking at.
- Both QBs are usable in this one. If the Patriots defense holds, then Brady will be going for the throat early and will be absolutely playable. Up 25-3? He will keep pushing because their defense is giving up a ton of points and that lead may not be safe. So Brady will be going full tilt. Down 25-3? This is the legendary Tom Brady! He is to the NFL what Chuck Norris was to World of Warcraft and he will simply put the foot down on the peddle and try to win the game by himself. All that being said, I’m looking squarely at Jameis Winston. Winston is only gonna cost you 6000 on DraftKings and I think he could easily score 24 points this week. I think he will probably score more like 18-20 but the potential is there. He will be highly owned in these pools, so I’m only using him in a cash game, but I’m absolutely using him in some spots.
- RBs, here is where I’ll steer clear. The Patriot backfield is always a question mark and this week is no different. Will it be White or will it be Gillislee taking the lead? Will one of them fumble and never see the field again? So I’m steering clear. On the Tampa side of the ball, Doug Martin is back! Do they throw him into the mix like a Kareem Hunt and see what he can do, or do they hold him back just a bit and use Freeman kind of like the Steelers did with Bell in week 1? If you know the answer to these questions, then the RBs here are a good tournament play, but I don’t know the answer, so I’m steering clear.
- WRs Here there is a bonanza of options. I really like Evans and Hogan but I expect them to be higher owned, so I’ll be using the more reliable Evans and probably fading on the less reliable Hogan. I left Hogan on my bench last week in season long and paid for it. This week, I’ll fire him up and Brady will look elsewhere, always happens. I’m not using Cooks, he just isn’t as productive as his price tag would require. I think Jackson is a possible reach play and Adam Humphries is a total reach but hes under 4k on Draftkings and if he gets in the end zone he would be guaranteed value as a play. So use your judgment, maybe you can pair Humphries with a NE RB and win the million?
- TE, Gronk has been a little quieter than normal, but he’s out there which automatically makes him a consideration for a high price chalk play. I’m not using him but you gotta consider it. Brate is a much cheaper option but I’m not using him, there are just better options in other games this weekend.
- I would NOT touch either defense in a game with a 50+ over under. I’m not gonna say any more than that. Why on Earth would you?
Good luck this weekend and remember to tune in Friday morning for the Week 5 podcast. Hear the results of our head to head challenge, discuss how you can still salvage season long, and much more!