Our Blog


NFL Breakdown: Week 5 Wide Receivers

The Wide Receiver Breakdown offers data-driven analysis for each week’s main NFL slate. For more of our weekly football content, visit the NFL homepage.

Whereas Weeks 1-2 had league-wide underperformance (-2.58 and -2.17 Vegas Plus/Minus values) and Week 3 had overperformance (+2.81), Week 4 was average in terms of Vegas production: The league went 15-17 on team totals and 9-7 on game totals. It looks like the betting markets are starting to get a sense of the season. As for Week 5, there are a few items to note:

  1. FantasyLabs has been acquired by The Chernin Group. That has nothing to do with football, but that’s the biggest news in the fantasy industry right now. (I say that with self-awareness, but I’m not joking.) Labs is now a part of The Action Network, which will soon release regular sports betting and fantasy newsletters. Sign up for the newsletters, which will be curated by Chad Millman, our Head of Media. Big news.
  2. The bye weeks have started: No Julio Jones (Falcons); Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders (Broncos); Michael Thomas and Willie Snead (Saints); and Terrelle Pryor and Jamison Crowder (Redskins).
  3. DraftKings has once again excluded the Sunday Night Football game from the main slate, so if you want to play Tyreek Hill (Chiefs) or DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller (Texans) do so on FanDuel.

For analysis of the Thursday, Sunday, and Monday night games, see Joe Holka’s Thursday night breakdown and Justin Bailey’s prime time breakdown (out later this week). Although it has wider applicability, this breakdown is explicitly for the 11-game DraftKings and 12-game FanDuel main slates.

The Big Four

You know who they are:

  • Odell Beckham, Jr. ($8,500 DraftKings, $8,900 FanDuel)
  • Antonio Brown ($8,400 DraftKings, $8,800 FanDuel)
  • A.J. Green ($8,200 DraftKings, $8,300 FanDuel)
  • Jordy Nelson ($8,100 DraftKings, $8,600 FanDuel)

To quote Lord Tennyson: “Half a league onward.”

The Smaller Randy Moss

After missing Week 1 with an ankle injury and playing 60.7 percent of the snaps in Week 2, Beckham dominated in Weeks 3-4, turning 28 targets into a 16/169/2 receiving line. Through his first three seasons, Randy Moss is the only NFL player with more yards and touchdowns than OBJ’s 4,122 and 35, and Moss is the only player in history to open his career with four straight 1,000-yard, 10-touchdown campaigns. That’s what OBJ is shooting for this year.

This week, however, Beckham is dealing with a dislocated finger. Although he returned to the game last week after breaking his digit, it’s probable that he will be less efficient catching the ball this week. On top of that, Beckham has a tough matchup against Chargers shutdown cornerback Casey Hayward, who is Pro Football Focus’ No. 2 cover man and often used to shadow opposing No. 1 receivers. OBJ has notable home/road splits . . .

  • Home: 23.36 DraftKings and 18.62 FanDuel points per game (PPG)
  • Road/Neutral: 21.09 and 16.57 PPG

. . . and the Giants are -3.5 favorites at home, but it’s hard to be bullish on the slate’s most expensive wide receiver when he has an injured hand and is projected for double-digit ownership against a top cornerback. Of the four highest-salaried receivers, OBJ has the lowest median projections in our Models. The Chargers have allowed a healthy 34.3 DraftKings and 28.3 FanDuel PPG to opposing wide receiver units, but much of that production has come against the non-Hayward cornerbacks. Sterling Shepard ($5,200 DraftKings, $6,000 FanDuel) is a possible leverage play on OBJ.

He’s Only as Good as His Home Favorite Quarterback

No player since 2013 has more than Antonio’s 740 targets and 44 touchdowns receiving. With a minimum of nine targets each game this year, Brown leads the Steelers with a 32.1 percent target share and the league with 587 air yards. Tied to quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio has been the No. 1 fantasy receiver since 2014 — especially as a home favorite, averaging an absurd 29.33 DraftKings and 23.48 FanDuel PPG with +10.13 and +8.27 Plus/Minus values as well as an 80.0 percent Consistency Rating and 20.4 percent ownership rate. Here a couple pertinent items:

Brown’s ownership rate will likely be diminished because of his tough matchup against the Jaguars, who this year have held opposing wide receiver units to bottom-two fantasy marks with 20.5 DraftKings and 16.4 FanDuel PPG. Additionally, the Jags have a run-flowing funnel defense, ranking first against the pass but dead last against the rush in Football Outsiders’ Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA). Likely to run most of his routes against the power cornerback duo of Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye, Brown could struggle in this game. There are legitimate reasons to fade him and the Steelers. That said, he’s the best wide receiver in the league, and he’s available at an ownership discount under macro circumstances that have historically suited him the best. It would be wise to have some tournament exposure to him and maybe even Martavis Bryant ($5,000 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel). Brown is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel.

The Human Resources Department

I’m not going to say that former offensive coordinator Ken Zampese was a great play caller, but in Green’s 11 healthy games with him he averaged 10.6 targets and never had fewer than eight. He had a Julio-esque 100.5 yards per game — and then he petitioned for Zampese’s dismissal. While Green was targeted only four times within the 10-yard line under Zampese, it’s still hard to say that Green is clearly better off now than he was to start the year. In Weeks 1-2 he faced the tough Ravens and Texans, and he got 18 targets. In Weeks 3-4 he faced the exploitable Packers and Browns, and he got 20 targets. It’s possible that Green’s two-week fantasy improvement has more to do with variance and matchup and less to do with who’s calling plays.

To be clear: Bill Lazor is almost certainly better than Zampese — but let’s not go overboard on the Lazor love. He’s not an offensive genius who’s going to funnel certain 100/1 games to Green each week. It’s possible that when facing a good defense quarterback Andy Dalton could regress back to his Weeks 1-2 self, which would hurt Green. As it happens, the Bengals have a tough matchup against the Bills, whose defense is first in DVOA and secondary is top-three in pass DVOA. The Bills have held opponents to a league-low 13.5 PPG, and Green is likely to be covered most by rookie first-rounder Tre’Davious White, PFF’s No. 5 cornerback. The Bengals are -3.0 home favorites. Side note: The Bills are 4-0 against the spread, and both the Bills and Bengals are 1-3 on the over/under. No game has a lower total than the Bills-Bengals affair at 39.0 points.

White Lightning

People don’t think of Nelson as a top-three fantasy receiver, but that’s what he’s been (when healthy) ever since his 2011 breakout campaign. Since returning from a knee injury that cost him the entire 2015 season, Nelson leads the league with 19 touchdowns receiving in 20 games. Tied for second with 14 is his teammate Davante Adams ($5,800 DraftKings, $6,900 FanDuel), who could miss Week 5 with a concussion. With 19 targets inside the 10-yard line in his last 20 games — and with Davante’s targets available — Jordy could crush against a Cowboys defense that is 21st in pass DVOA.

One complicating factor is that the Packers are +2.5 road underdogs implied for 25.0 points, and their game with the Cowboys leads the slate with a 52.5-point over/under. Because of the high total and Adams’ possible absence, Jordy is projected to be one of the slate’s chalkiest receivers — but ever since becoming a red-zone/touchdown-driven player in 2014 Jordy has had significant home/road and favorite/underdog splits:

  • Home: 22.84 DraftKings and 18.97 FanDuel PPG
  • Road: 17.84 and 13.75
  • Favorite: 22.61 and 18.18
  • Dog: 13.01 and 10.64

As a result, his seven games as a road dog haven’t been good, as he’s  averaged 11.71 DraftKings and 9.43 FanDuel PPG with -4.94 and -3.90 Plus/Minus values. It also doesn’t help that the Packers could be without left tackle David Bakhtiari (hamstring) and right tackle Bryan Bulaga (ankle). Nevertheless, Jordy benefits from having played on Thursday last week, which gives him and his teammates three more days than the Cowboys to rest and prepare. In Jordy’s six Sun./Mon. games following a Thursday contest — and five of these six games were on the road! — Jordy has averaged 19.95 DraftKings and 16.53 FanDuel PPG. Nelson is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel, and he has the position’s highest ceiling projections. In a non-Adams scenario, both Randall Cobb ($6,700 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) and Geronimo Allison ($4,400 DraftKings, $4,600 FanDuel) are also desirable.

Fly Patterns

Larry Fitzgerald ($6,800 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel), Jaron Brown ($4,500 DraftKings, $4,500 FanDuel), John Brown ($5,100 DraftKings, $6,200 FanDuel), and J.J. Nelson ($4,900 DraftKings, $5,300 FanDuel): The Cardinals have failed to hit their implied totals for four straight weeks on their way to a -5.75 Vegas Plus/Minus, but they’re -6.5 road dogs and should have a pass-heavy game script against the Eagles, who have allowed opposing wide receiver units to score the third-most fantasy points of the season with 44.7 DraftKings and 34.4 FanDuel PPG. No team has more pass attempts than the Cardinals with 183. Fitz leads the team with a 22.5 percent target share and the league with 10 red-zone targets. Jaron has 29 targets (five in the red zone) over the last three games. JoBro (quad) and Nelson (hamstring) are dealing with lingering injuries, but both are big-play threats.

Amari Cooper ($5,700 DraftKings, $6,800 FanDuel) and Michael Crabtree ($5,700 DraftKings, $6,900 FanDuel): This — THIS is what leverage looks like. Cooper has punished investors for three straight weeks, going 7/48/0 on 18 targets — and now he’s without quarterback Derek Carr (back) as he faces a Ravens defense that has held opposing wide receivers to bottom-four marks of 24.8 DraftKings and 19.9 FanDuel PPG. It doesn’t help that Cooper has historically been used less when favored (6.9 targets per game) than as a dog or in pick’ems (8.9 targets). Nevertheless, Cooper is just one of nine receivers in NFL history to start his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard campaigns: I like to bet on talent. Cooper is still second in the league with five targets inside the 10-yard line. Crabtree is fourth with 20 touchdowns receiving since joining the Raiders in 2015.

DeAndre Hopkins ($7,600 DraftKings, $7,700 FanDuel) and Will Fuller ($4,400 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel): Available on the FanDuel (but not DraftKings) main slate, the Texans are +1.0 home dogs to the Chiefs, who have played Marcus Peters almost exclusively at left corner this year. Nuk leads the league with a 38.6 percent target share, and Fuller in his 2017 debut last week was targeted twice inside the red zone, converting both of them into touchdowns. Nuk and Fuller will likely spend much of the game taking turns against right corner Terrance Mitchell, who has a poor 48.2 PFF grade.

Jeremy Maclin ($7,600 DraftKings, $7,700 FanDuel) and Mike Wallace ($4,400 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel): The Ravens are averaging just 15.0 PPG and have a -6.17 Vegas Plus/Minus, but the Raiders are 28th in pass DVOA. I wouldn’t roster these guys — but that’s why they might have some contrarian upside. Maclin leads the position with a 99 percent Bargain Rating on DraftKings.

T.Y. Hilton ($6,000 DraftKings, $7,300 FanDuel): The Colts are -1.5 home favorites against the 49ers, who have allowed opposing wide receiver units to average top-six marks of 40.2 DraftKings and 30.8 FanDuel PPG. Hilton has historically been at his best when favored in Indianapolis, where he can leverage his speed in the climate-controlled FieldTurf-ed confines of Lucas Oil Stadium. Even with his subpar quarterback situation, Hilton is 12th in the league with 289 yards. Against the cornerback trio of Rashard RobinsonDontae Johnson, and K’Wuan Williams, all of whom have poor PFF grades of under 50.0, Hilton could crush. He leads the position with six DraftKings Pro Trends.

Keenan Allen ($7,200 DraftKings, $7,500 FanDuel) and Tyrell Williams ($5,300 DraftKings, $6,500 FanDuel): On the one hand, Allen is a good receiver averaging 10 targets per game. On the other hand it’s possible that, when Allen isn’t in the slot against Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, he’ll be shadowed on the outside by Janoris Jenkins. The Chargers are +3.0 road underdogs and will likely have a pass-skewed game script, but the Giants have held opposing wide receiver units to the fifth-fewest fantasy points this season with 25.6 DraftKings and 20.5 FanDuel PPG. I’d rather take my chances with Williams, who will probably play more snaps than Allen will against the exploitable Eli Apple, who has a poor 48.2 PFF grade.

The Model Wide Receivers

There are currently six wide receivers atop the Pro Models built by Jonathan Bales, Peter Jennings (CSURAM88), Adam Levitan, and Kevin McClelland (SportsGeek):

  • Dez Bryant ($6,500 DraftKings, $7,800 FanDuel)
  • DeVante Parker ($6,600 DraftKings, $6,100 FanDuel)
  • Rishard Matthews ($5,400 DraftKings, $5,600 FanDuel)
  • Robert Woods ($3,700 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel)
  • Kenny Stills ($3,700 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel)
  • Aldrick Robinson ($3,100 DraftKings, $4,600 FanDuel)

Last year the Cowboys were first in the NFL with a 48.7 percent rushing rate. This year they’re 21st at 39.68 percent. Dez leads the league with six targets inside the 10-yard line and is tied for fourth with 40 targets. The Cowboys are -2.0 home favorites with a slate-high implied total of 27.5 points, and Dez is likely to run the majority of his routes against the catastrophic combination of Kevin King and Damarious Randall, both of whom have poor PFF grades of below 45.0. Terrance Williams ($3,600 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel) and even Brice Butler ($3,500 DraftKings, $4,700 FanDuel) are also in play. We’re projecting Dez to be the chalkiest receiver on DraftKings, where he’s the highest-rated wideout in the Bales Model.

The thesis for investing in Parker, Stills, and also Jarvis Landry ($5,800 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) is simple: They’re facing the Titans. Last year, the Titans allowed top-two fantasy marks of 44.6 DraftKings and 34.8 FanDuel PPG to opposing wide receiver units; this year, they’re still top-two with 46.0 and 37.1 PPG. Even with quarterback Jay Cutler pretending to throw the ball, the Dolphins receivers warrant tournament exposure. We’re projecting Parker for significant ownership on FanDuel, where he leads the position with a 99 percent Bargain Rating, but Stills will likely have minimal ownership on both sites. Parker is the highest-rated FanDuel wide receiver in the Bales and Levitan Models. Parker and Stills are the top FanDuel and DraftKings receivers in the SportsGeek Model.

Matthews started 2016 as a rotational receiver, but from Week 8 to now he’s never played less than 70.0 percent of the snaps in any game. Rookie Corey Davis has been ruled out for Week 5, so Matthews could have more usage. At the same time, quarterback Marcus Mariota (hamstring) seems unlikely to play this weekend. Still, Matthews is in a decent spot. Despite competing for targets with Davis and Eric Decker ($4,000 DraftKings, $5,400 FanDuel), the silent No. 1 receiver leads the Titans with a 27.8 percent target share. The Titans are -1.0 road favorites against the Dolphins, who are 31st in pass DVOA. Matthews is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel, where he’s the highest-rated receiver in the CSURAM88 Model.

Woods is an intriguing option. He leads all Rams wide receivers with an 18.5 percent target share and has the most consistent distribution of targets (5, 4, 7, 6), but Sammy Watkins ($5,000 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) and Cooper Kupp ($4,500 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel) have received most of the attention from fantasy players. The Rams lead the league with 35.5 PPG and are -1.0 home favorites against the Seahawks. The matchup is tough, but we’re projecting almost nonexistent ownership for the Rams receivers. Expected to run many of his routes against Richard Sherman, Woods especially should have diminished ownership — but Sherman has been exploitable this year with a poor PFF grade of just 49.5. Woods is the highest-rated DraftKings receiver in the CSURAM88 Model.

Of course — of course — Robinson is the highest-rated DraftKings receiver in the Levitan Model. In the old school RotoViz days I was the original A-Rob truther — and then Levitan stole him from me. I’m not bitter — but I want my Air Aldrick t-shirt back. With Marquise Goodwin (concussion) uncertain for Week 5, the long-time Kyle Shanahan favorite is in position to exploit a Colts defense that is 24th in pass DVOA. With Goodwin playing only nine snaps last week before exiting the game, Robinson saw 12 targets. In only nine games has A-Rob played at least 50.0 percent of his team’s offensive snaps; all of those games have been with Shanahan. In those games, he’s averaged 10.6 DraftKings and 8.8 FanDuel PPG. My bold call on the Week 5 NFL Daily Fantasy Flex was that A-Rob (along with J.J. Nelson) would get a touchdown, and I also don’t mind Pierre Garcon ($6,100 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel). If you construct 49ers stacks with the Lineup Builder, you’re an unquestioned degenerate. If Goodwin sits, Robinson will be one of the chalkiest receivers on the slate and a legitimate option in cash games.

Positional Breakdowns & Tools

Be sure to research the wide receivers for yourself with our tools and read the other Week 5 positional breakdowns:

• Quarterbacks
Running Backs
• Tight Ends

Good luck this week!

News Updates

After this piece is published, FantasyLabs is likely to provide news updates on a number of players herein mentioned. Be sure to stay ahead of your competition with our NFL news feed:

The Wide Receiver Breakdown offers data-driven analysis for each week’s main NFL slate. For more of our weekly football content, visit the NFL homepage.

Whereas Weeks 1-2 had league-wide underperformance (-2.58 and -2.17 Vegas Plus/Minus values) and Week 3 had overperformance (+2.81), Week 4 was average in terms of Vegas production: The league went 15-17 on team totals and 9-7 on game totals. It looks like the betting markets are starting to get a sense of the season. As for Week 5, there are a few items to note:

  1. FantasyLabs has been acquired by The Chernin Group. That has nothing to do with football, but that’s the biggest news in the fantasy industry right now. (I say that with self-awareness, but I’m not joking.) Labs is now a part of The Action Network, which will soon release regular sports betting and fantasy newsletters. Sign up for the newsletters, which will be curated by Chad Millman, our Head of Media. Big news.
  2. The bye weeks have started: No Julio Jones (Falcons); Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders (Broncos); Michael Thomas and Willie Snead (Saints); and Terrelle Pryor and Jamison Crowder (Redskins).
  3. DraftKings has once again excluded the Sunday Night Football game from the main slate, so if you want to play Tyreek Hill (Chiefs) or DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller (Texans) do so on FanDuel.

For analysis of the Thursday, Sunday, and Monday night games, see Joe Holka’s Thursday night breakdown and Justin Bailey’s prime time breakdown (out later this week). Although it has wider applicability, this breakdown is explicitly for the 11-game DraftKings and 12-game FanDuel main slates.

The Big Four

You know who they are:

  • Odell Beckham, Jr. ($8,500 DraftKings, $8,900 FanDuel)
  • Antonio Brown ($8,400 DraftKings, $8,800 FanDuel)
  • A.J. Green ($8,200 DraftKings, $8,300 FanDuel)
  • Jordy Nelson ($8,100 DraftKings, $8,600 FanDuel)

To quote Lord Tennyson: “Half a league onward.”

The Smaller Randy Moss

After missing Week 1 with an ankle injury and playing 60.7 percent of the snaps in Week 2, Beckham dominated in Weeks 3-4, turning 28 targets into a 16/169/2 receiving line. Through his first three seasons, Randy Moss is the only NFL player with more yards and touchdowns than OBJ’s 4,122 and 35, and Moss is the only player in history to open his career with four straight 1,000-yard, 10-touchdown campaigns. That’s what OBJ is shooting for this year.

This week, however, Beckham is dealing with a dislocated finger. Although he returned to the game last week after breaking his digit, it’s probable that he will be less efficient catching the ball this week. On top of that, Beckham has a tough matchup against Chargers shutdown cornerback Casey Hayward, who is Pro Football Focus’ No. 2 cover man and often used to shadow opposing No. 1 receivers. OBJ has notable home/road splits . . .

  • Home: 23.36 DraftKings and 18.62 FanDuel points per game (PPG)
  • Road/Neutral: 21.09 and 16.57 PPG

. . . and the Giants are -3.5 favorites at home, but it’s hard to be bullish on the slate’s most expensive wide receiver when he has an injured hand and is projected for double-digit ownership against a top cornerback. Of the four highest-salaried receivers, OBJ has the lowest median projections in our Models. The Chargers have allowed a healthy 34.3 DraftKings and 28.3 FanDuel PPG to opposing wide receiver units, but much of that production has come against the non-Hayward cornerbacks. Sterling Shepard ($5,200 DraftKings, $6,000 FanDuel) is a possible leverage play on OBJ.

He’s Only as Good as His Home Favorite Quarterback

No player since 2013 has more than Antonio’s 740 targets and 44 touchdowns receiving. With a minimum of nine targets each game this year, Brown leads the Steelers with a 32.1 percent target share and the league with 587 air yards. Tied to quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio has been the No. 1 fantasy receiver since 2014 — especially as a home favorite, averaging an absurd 29.33 DraftKings and 23.48 FanDuel PPG with +10.13 and +8.27 Plus/Minus values as well as an 80.0 percent Consistency Rating and 20.4 percent ownership rate. Here a couple pertinent items:

Brown’s ownership rate will likely be diminished because of his tough matchup against the Jaguars, who this year have held opposing wide receiver units to bottom-two fantasy marks with 20.5 DraftKings and 16.4 FanDuel PPG. Additionally, the Jags have a run-flowing funnel defense, ranking first against the pass but dead last against the rush in Football Outsiders’ Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA). Likely to run most of his routes against the power cornerback duo of Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye, Brown could struggle in this game. There are legitimate reasons to fade him and the Steelers. That said, he’s the best wide receiver in the league, and he’s available at an ownership discount under macro circumstances that have historically suited him the best. It would be wise to have some tournament exposure to him and maybe even Martavis Bryant ($5,000 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel). Brown is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel.

The Human Resources Department

I’m not going to say that former offensive coordinator Ken Zampese was a great play caller, but in Green’s 11 healthy games with him he averaged 10.6 targets and never had fewer than eight. He had a Julio-esque 100.5 yards per game — and then he petitioned for Zampese’s dismissal. While Green was targeted only four times within the 10-yard line under Zampese, it’s still hard to say that Green is clearly better off now than he was to start the year. In Weeks 1-2 he faced the tough Ravens and Texans, and he got 18 targets. In Weeks 3-4 he faced the exploitable Packers and Browns, and he got 20 targets. It’s possible that Green’s two-week fantasy improvement has more to do with variance and matchup and less to do with who’s calling plays.

To be clear: Bill Lazor is almost certainly better than Zampese — but let’s not go overboard on the Lazor love. He’s not an offensive genius who’s going to funnel certain 100/1 games to Green each week. It’s possible that when facing a good defense quarterback Andy Dalton could regress back to his Weeks 1-2 self, which would hurt Green. As it happens, the Bengals have a tough matchup against the Bills, whose defense is first in DVOA and secondary is top-three in pass DVOA. The Bills have held opponents to a league-low 13.5 PPG, and Green is likely to be covered most by rookie first-rounder Tre’Davious White, PFF’s No. 5 cornerback. The Bengals are -3.0 home favorites. Side note: The Bills are 4-0 against the spread, and both the Bills and Bengals are 1-3 on the over/under. No game has a lower total than the Bills-Bengals affair at 39.0 points.

White Lightning

People don’t think of Nelson as a top-three fantasy receiver, but that’s what he’s been (when healthy) ever since his 2011 breakout campaign. Since returning from a knee injury that cost him the entire 2015 season, Nelson leads the league with 19 touchdowns receiving in 20 games. Tied for second with 14 is his teammate Davante Adams ($5,800 DraftKings, $6,900 FanDuel), who could miss Week 5 with a concussion. With 19 targets inside the 10-yard line in his last 20 games — and with Davante’s targets available — Jordy could crush against a Cowboys defense that is 21st in pass DVOA.

One complicating factor is that the Packers are +2.5 road underdogs implied for 25.0 points, and their game with the Cowboys leads the slate with a 52.5-point over/under. Because of the high total and Adams’ possible absence, Jordy is projected to be one of the slate’s chalkiest receivers — but ever since becoming a red-zone/touchdown-driven player in 2014 Jordy has had significant home/road and favorite/underdog splits:

  • Home: 22.84 DraftKings and 18.97 FanDuel PPG
  • Road: 17.84 and 13.75
  • Favorite: 22.61 and 18.18
  • Dog: 13.01 and 10.64

As a result, his seven games as a road dog haven’t been good, as he’s  averaged 11.71 DraftKings and 9.43 FanDuel PPG with -4.94 and -3.90 Plus/Minus values. It also doesn’t help that the Packers could be without left tackle David Bakhtiari (hamstring) and right tackle Bryan Bulaga (ankle). Nevertheless, Jordy benefits from having played on Thursday last week, which gives him and his teammates three more days than the Cowboys to rest and prepare. In Jordy’s six Sun./Mon. games following a Thursday contest — and five of these six games were on the road! — Jordy has averaged 19.95 DraftKings and 16.53 FanDuel PPG. Nelson is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel, and he has the position’s highest ceiling projections. In a non-Adams scenario, both Randall Cobb ($6,700 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) and Geronimo Allison ($4,400 DraftKings, $4,600 FanDuel) are also desirable.

Fly Patterns

Larry Fitzgerald ($6,800 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel), Jaron Brown ($4,500 DraftKings, $4,500 FanDuel), John Brown ($5,100 DraftKings, $6,200 FanDuel), and J.J. Nelson ($4,900 DraftKings, $5,300 FanDuel): The Cardinals have failed to hit their implied totals for four straight weeks on their way to a -5.75 Vegas Plus/Minus, but they’re -6.5 road dogs and should have a pass-heavy game script against the Eagles, who have allowed opposing wide receiver units to score the third-most fantasy points of the season with 44.7 DraftKings and 34.4 FanDuel PPG. No team has more pass attempts than the Cardinals with 183. Fitz leads the team with a 22.5 percent target share and the league with 10 red-zone targets. Jaron has 29 targets (five in the red zone) over the last three games. JoBro (quad) and Nelson (hamstring) are dealing with lingering injuries, but both are big-play threats.

Amari Cooper ($5,700 DraftKings, $6,800 FanDuel) and Michael Crabtree ($5,700 DraftKings, $6,900 FanDuel): This — THIS is what leverage looks like. Cooper has punished investors for three straight weeks, going 7/48/0 on 18 targets — and now he’s without quarterback Derek Carr (back) as he faces a Ravens defense that has held opposing wide receivers to bottom-four marks of 24.8 DraftKings and 19.9 FanDuel PPG. It doesn’t help that Cooper has historically been used less when favored (6.9 targets per game) than as a dog or in pick’ems (8.9 targets). Nevertheless, Cooper is just one of nine receivers in NFL history to start his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard campaigns: I like to bet on talent. Cooper is still second in the league with five targets inside the 10-yard line. Crabtree is fourth with 20 touchdowns receiving since joining the Raiders in 2015.

DeAndre Hopkins ($7,600 DraftKings, $7,700 FanDuel) and Will Fuller ($4,400 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel): Available on the FanDuel (but not DraftKings) main slate, the Texans are +1.0 home dogs to the Chiefs, who have played Marcus Peters almost exclusively at left corner this year. Nuk leads the league with a 38.6 percent target share, and Fuller in his 2017 debut last week was targeted twice inside the red zone, converting both of them into touchdowns. Nuk and Fuller will likely spend much of the game taking turns against right corner Terrance Mitchell, who has a poor 48.2 PFF grade.

Jeremy Maclin ($7,600 DraftKings, $7,700 FanDuel) and Mike Wallace ($4,400 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel): The Ravens are averaging just 15.0 PPG and have a -6.17 Vegas Plus/Minus, but the Raiders are 28th in pass DVOA. I wouldn’t roster these guys — but that’s why they might have some contrarian upside. Maclin leads the position with a 99 percent Bargain Rating on DraftKings.

T.Y. Hilton ($6,000 DraftKings, $7,300 FanDuel): The Colts are -1.5 home favorites against the 49ers, who have allowed opposing wide receiver units to average top-six marks of 40.2 DraftKings and 30.8 FanDuel PPG. Hilton has historically been at his best when favored in Indianapolis, where he can leverage his speed in the climate-controlled FieldTurf-ed confines of Lucas Oil Stadium. Even with his subpar quarterback situation, Hilton is 12th in the league with 289 yards. Against the cornerback trio of Rashard RobinsonDontae Johnson, and K’Wuan Williams, all of whom have poor PFF grades of under 50.0, Hilton could crush. He leads the position with six DraftKings Pro Trends.

Keenan Allen ($7,200 DraftKings, $7,500 FanDuel) and Tyrell Williams ($5,300 DraftKings, $6,500 FanDuel): On the one hand, Allen is a good receiver averaging 10 targets per game. On the other hand it’s possible that, when Allen isn’t in the slot against Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, he’ll be shadowed on the outside by Janoris Jenkins. The Chargers are +3.0 road underdogs and will likely have a pass-skewed game script, but the Giants have held opposing wide receiver units to the fifth-fewest fantasy points this season with 25.6 DraftKings and 20.5 FanDuel PPG. I’d rather take my chances with Williams, who will probably play more snaps than Allen will against the exploitable Eli Apple, who has a poor 48.2 PFF grade.

The Model Wide Receivers

There are currently six wide receivers atop the Pro Models built by Jonathan Bales, Peter Jennings (CSURAM88), Adam Levitan, and Kevin McClelland (SportsGeek):

  • Dez Bryant ($6,500 DraftKings, $7,800 FanDuel)
  • DeVante Parker ($6,600 DraftKings, $6,100 FanDuel)
  • Rishard Matthews ($5,400 DraftKings, $5,600 FanDuel)
  • Robert Woods ($3,700 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel)
  • Kenny Stills ($3,700 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel)
  • Aldrick Robinson ($3,100 DraftKings, $4,600 FanDuel)

Last year the Cowboys were first in the NFL with a 48.7 percent rushing rate. This year they’re 21st at 39.68 percent. Dez leads the league with six targets inside the 10-yard line and is tied for fourth with 40 targets. The Cowboys are -2.0 home favorites with a slate-high implied total of 27.5 points, and Dez is likely to run the majority of his routes against the catastrophic combination of Kevin King and Damarious Randall, both of whom have poor PFF grades of below 45.0. Terrance Williams ($3,600 DraftKings, $4,900 FanDuel) and even Brice Butler ($3,500 DraftKings, $4,700 FanDuel) are also in play. We’re projecting Dez to be the chalkiest receiver on DraftKings, where he’s the highest-rated wideout in the Bales Model.

The thesis for investing in Parker, Stills, and also Jarvis Landry ($5,800 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) is simple: They’re facing the Titans. Last year, the Titans allowed top-two fantasy marks of 44.6 DraftKings and 34.8 FanDuel PPG to opposing wide receiver units; this year, they’re still top-two with 46.0 and 37.1 PPG. Even with quarterback Jay Cutler pretending to throw the ball, the Dolphins receivers warrant tournament exposure. We’re projecting Parker for significant ownership on FanDuel, where he leads the position with a 99 percent Bargain Rating, but Stills will likely have minimal ownership on both sites. Parker is the highest-rated FanDuel wide receiver in the Bales and Levitan Models. Parker and Stills are the top FanDuel and DraftKings receivers in the SportsGeek Model.

Matthews started 2016 as a rotational receiver, but from Week 8 to now he’s never played less than 70.0 percent of the snaps in any game. Rookie Corey Davis has been ruled out for Week 5, so Matthews could have more usage. At the same time, quarterback Marcus Mariota (hamstring) seems unlikely to play this weekend. Still, Matthews is in a decent spot. Despite competing for targets with Davis and Eric Decker ($4,000 DraftKings, $5,400 FanDuel), the silent No. 1 receiver leads the Titans with a 27.8 percent target share. The Titans are -1.0 road favorites against the Dolphins, who are 31st in pass DVOA. Matthews is tied for the position lead with seven Pro Trends on FanDuel, where he’s the highest-rated receiver in the CSURAM88 Model.

Woods is an intriguing option. He leads all Rams wide receivers with an 18.5 percent target share and has the most consistent distribution of targets (5, 4, 7, 6), but Sammy Watkins ($5,000 DraftKings, $6,600 FanDuel) and Cooper Kupp ($4,500 DraftKings, $5,700 FanDuel) have received most of the attention from fantasy players. The Rams lead the league with 35.5 PPG and are -1.0 home favorites against the Seahawks. The matchup is tough, but we’re projecting almost nonexistent ownership for the Rams receivers. Expected to run many of his routes against Richard Sherman, Woods especially should have diminished ownership — but Sherman has been exploitable this year with a poor PFF grade of just 49.5. Woods is the highest-rated DraftKings receiver in the CSURAM88 Model.

Of course — of course — Robinson is the highest-rated DraftKings receiver in the Levitan Model. In the old school RotoViz days I was the original A-Rob truther — and then Levitan stole him from me. I’m not bitter — but I want my Air Aldrick t-shirt back. With Marquise Goodwin (concussion) uncertain for Week 5, the long-time Kyle Shanahan favorite is in position to exploit a Colts defense that is 24th in pass DVOA. With Goodwin playing only nine snaps last week before exiting the game, Robinson saw 12 targets. In only nine games has A-Rob played at least 50.0 percent of his team’s offensive snaps; all of those games have been with Shanahan. In those games, he’s averaged 10.6 DraftKings and 8.8 FanDuel PPG. My bold call on the Week 5 NFL Daily Fantasy Flex was that A-Rob (along with J.J. Nelson) would get a touchdown, and I also don’t mind Pierre Garcon ($6,100 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel). If you construct 49ers stacks with the Lineup Builder, you’re an unquestioned degenerate. If Goodwin sits, Robinson will be one of the chalkiest receivers on the slate and a legitimate option in cash games.

Positional Breakdowns & Tools

Be sure to research the wide receivers for yourself with our tools and read the other Week 5 positional breakdowns:

• Quarterbacks
Running Backs
• Tight Ends

Good luck this week!

News Updates

After this piece is published, FantasyLabs is likely to provide news updates on a number of players herein mentioned. Be sure to stay ahead of your competition with our NFL news feed: