Every Sunday morning, fantasy owners face similar choices to the ones "dating" app users do on Saturday night. There are plenty of options out there. The question is whether you swipe left and pass on potential opportunity or swipe right and open the door for exciting possibilities. Each week, we'll talk about which players deserve a swipe right when setting your daily fantasy lineup.
Fantasy beasts like Brown are often the first dude on your lineup card no matter what, and are worth making sacrifices to build around. However, with Big Ben out and Michael Vick in, it's hard to imagine Brown's production will remain the same. In the four games in which Vick saw significant action last year with the Jets, they took only 22 shots down the field. Worse yet, they completed only five of them. Brown has feasted on such passes this year, hauling in six out of eight targets for 232 yards. If Vick remains erratic on deep balls and Brown loses a few big plays as a result, he'll need a hell of a lot of extra dinkers and dunkers to make up the difference. Layer on the short week and the general ineptitude continuously displayed by all teams on Thursday nights and I'd rather spend my cash on Julio Jones or a cheaper stud receiver.
After participating in practice Wednesday, it looks like Foster might make his return to the field on Sunday. However, that does not mean he should immediately return to your active lineup. It is certainly possible that his groin injury will hamper his effectiveness, and when you consider it was initially thought he's miss nine weeks, it's also entirely possible that he doesn't make it through this game. Throughout his career, Foster has tended to finish seasons much stronger than he starts them, as he's averaged less than 14 fantasy points a game in his last four season debuts. Those are OK numbers for a lottery ticket RB, but won't hack it for a guy carrying a top-6 price tag. We know Foster's groin has previously served as ground zero for lots of drama and you'd be best served avoiding him for now.
Calvin Johnson's incredible past performances still resonate in the minds of most fantasy players, yet it's been awhile since he lived up to his elite billing. As we learned yesterday, it took an average of 19 points per player to win even a 50/50 contest last week. Does it surprise you to learn that in his last 20 games, Johnson has cleared that mark only seven times? Do you really want to spend the same money you could use on A.J. Green, Randall Cobb, or Emmanuel Sanders to bet he breaks this trend against a Seattle D that ranks seventh best in the league in fantasy points given up to WRs? I sure don't. Instead of Megatron, he currently more closely resembles the Noisy Cricket.
I've wanted to write about James Jones every week and feel like a dope for waiting this long. Now the Packers get to face a Niners team that has given up 40-plus points in consecutive weeks, and with the Patriots locked in their cheatotorium figuring out more ways to aggravate Goodell, Green Bay is clearly the best bet for explosive production in Week 4. Jones represents the top bang-for-the-buck entry point into the Rodgers-led juggernaut, and given that he ranks in the top 10 among WRs in red zone targets, he's a great bet to score during Sunday's semi-inevitable shellacking. Jones getting cut by the Giants and returning to the land of the cheeseheads didn't just revive his career. It elevated him from afterthought to fantasy gold. Just imagine what he could do if he had a better QB throwing him the ball!
Frank Gore is like Donald Trump – he seemingly won't go away, no matter what. Fresh off an excellent performance against the Titans, he now gets a Jags team that got shredded by the Pats RBs, giving up over 40 fantasy points. Despite his positive momentum and favorable opponent, Gore still finds himself outside the top 20 RBs in cost this week. With Andrew Luck's shoulder hurting and a league laughingstock lined up against him, expect Gore's usage to give him every opportunity to provide a healthy return on his relatively cheap price tag.
If necessity is the mother of invention, opportunity is the mother of DFS value. With Shady McCoy banged up and out for the week, the gods of RB chance are now shining their light on the rookie out of Florida State. It comes as no surprise that Rex Ryan loves him, given Williams' great feet, and he will be called on time and time again on Sunday. Considering that Williams is the only RB in the league to score a touchdown in each of the season's first three weeks—and that's he's averaging a crazy 7.8 yards per carry—he could blow up this week when asked to carry the load. If he does, his $3,400 price tag means he will be in the majority of winning lineups come Monday night.