Week 9 DFS: Tournament Stacks

This article first appeared on RotoBaller.com

By Andrew C. Lovell (@Andrew_Lovell)


Week Nine!? How did this happen? It feels like the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs just kicked off for the season opener last week. Alas, here we are at the midway point of the regular season. Enjoy these weeks of football while they last.

The goal of this weekly column is to help find the most profitable DFS stacks, while avoiding the duds. Stacking, or pairing multiple players from the same NFL team, is an ideal way to maximize your point production, which is crucial in larger GPP (guaranteed prize pool) tournaments.

Let’s take a look at some of the top DFS stacks for Week 9, loosely sorted by salary.


High-Priced Week 9 DFS Stacks

New Orleans QB Drew Brees and WR Michael Thomas vs. Tampa Bay

Who is the person wearing Brees’ jersey this season and what has he done with the future Hall-of-Famer? Brees is on pace for only 4,459 yards and 25 touchdowns this season. While that might be a career-best season for some quarterbacks, those totals would represent Brees’ lowest totals since 2009 and 2005, respectively.

A home matchup with the Buccaneers’ 30th-ranked pass defense could be just what the doctor ordered. Thomas, who has seven catches in each of his last two games, is the ideal stack, though don’t overlook dynamic rookie running back Alvin Kamara.

Seattle QB Russell Wilson and WR Doug Baldwin vs. Washington

Few quarterbacks are hotter than Wilson, who has 786 yards and seven touchdowns through the air over his last two games. Last Sunday against Houston, Wilson exploded for 452 yards and four touchdowns in an epic shootout win, but Baldwin (six receptions, 54 yards) was minimally involved from a fantasy perspective.

He’s still been targeted 22 times over the last two games, and is just two weeks removed from a 9-92-1 final stat line against the New York Giants. Jimmy Graham, who has four touchdowns in his last two games, along with Paul Richardson and Tyler Tockett, also make viable stacking options in the Seahawks’ potent passing attack.

Kansas City QB Alex Smith and WR Tyreek Hill at Dallas

Are you still waiting for Smith to put up his first real dud of the season? Well, keep waiting, because it’s unlikely to happen this Sunday against the Cowboys’ middling pass defense. Smith sports a sparkling 16-to-0 touchdown-to-interception ratio and the Dallas defense has allowed 12 TDs compared to just three INTs.

Hill is arguably the NFL’s most electrifying player, but his fantasy production is consistent in its wild inconsistency. Hill has rotated big games with duds on a weekly basis and, if that pattern holds, is due for another long touchdown against Dallas.

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Moderately-Priced Week 9 DFS Stacks

Carolina QB Cam Newton and WR Devin Funchess vs. Atlanta

Newton has not looked great over his last three games, tossing six interceptions against just two touchdowns. His rushing prowess (he has at least 44 yards in four of his last five games) helps keep his floor higher than most quarterbacks.

With Kelvin Benjamin now rocking a Buffalo Bills jersey, Funchess figures to operate as Newton’s No. 1 wide receiver for the rest of the season. Anytime you can roster a No. 1 option for a moderate price, it’s worth a look. Rookie Christian McCaffrey also remains a strong stacking option.

Indianapolis QB Jacoby Brissett and WR T.Y. Hilton at Houston

At some point the Colts have to get Hilton more involved … right? Last year’s NFL receiving yards leader has a measly five catches for 61 yards combined over his last three games. That paltry production has caused his DFS price to plummet, and for good reason.

All that being said, Hilton is still an elite talent and the Texans’ pass defense ranks just 22nd in the league. Hilton is a boom-or-bust option, but for this price he’s worth a roll of the dice. All it takes is one long touchdown for him to return value.

Houston QB Tom Savage and WR DeAndre Hopkins vs. Indianapolis

Sometimes the football gods are just cruel. Why would they give us Deshaun Watson for a glorious seven-week stretch, only to take him away with a torn ACL suffered in practice. It’s just brutal.

The Texans will move forward with Savage, who represents a staggering drop in talent and fantasy production from Watson. The home matchup with the Colts’ 31st-ranked pass defense, however, is still appealing, so you can try stacking him with Hopkins. Just don’t expect Watson-like numbers.


Bargain-Priced Week 9 DFS Stacks

Denver QB Brock Osweiler and WR Demaryius Thomas at Philadelphia

Remember that hot start by Trevor Siemian during the Broncos’ 2-0 start to the season? That seems like years ago. His recent struggles led to his benching and the promotion of a familiar face for Broncos fans.

Osweiler isn’t likely to light the world on fire, but in a week with limited quarterback options, he’s a bargain play with some upside. Thomas has yet to find the end zone this season which, for a player of his caliber, is just silly. It’s worth a roll of the dice that the streak ends this Sunday.

New York Giants QB Eli Manning and TE Evan Engram vs. Los Angeles Rams

This is a difficult matchup against a solid defense, but Engram has emerged as a solid DFS option in the wake of the injuries to the Giants’ wide receiver corps. If you’re rolling with this stack, you’re hoping Engram stays hot.

The rookie tight end has at least five catches for 60 yards and a touchdown in each of his last two games. Beyond that … well, there’s not much to like. Hey, it’s a light week, remember?

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