FanDuel Week 5 DFS NFL Sleepers & Pivot Plays

Written By Nate Weitzer on October 6, 2017

Week 5 DFS NFL Sleeper, Contrarian, and Pivot Plays

Week 5 NFL is upon us and everyone is looking to cash in on the big money at FanDuel. Every week, we’ll bring you our top DFS NFL picks for each position, and recommend them as Cash Game and/or GPP plays. And to keep up with all things PlayPicks, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

Cash game options generally come with less risk and a more stable floor, while the best GPP plays can come with tons of risk and upside. Taking a chance on players with high ceilings and low floors is a good way to separate from a large tournament field.

As with any DFS sport, the advice below is relevant for fantasy purposes. A player or team might be better or worse from a fantasy perspective than they are in real life due to matchup, price, game flow, etc. This is important when constructing a roster. And if you’re looking for new ways to play DFS NFL, be sure and give BOOM Fantasy and DRAFT a try!

In DFS NFL, predicting game flow can be vital towards success. Teams that are heavily favored and come through with a comfortable win will be far more likely to lean on their running game, while two teams with poor defenses and high-powered offenses could pay off by getting into a shootout. Later in the season, especially, weather will play a key factor in NFL games, so make sure to check the forecast for each Sunday.

In general, GPP plays are high-risk, high-reward prospects that can fizzle out and leave you empty handed. That said, if you want to win the big money, you have to take big chances and sometimes that means fading a safer choice for a risky play with more upside.

In this article, we highlight the plays that aren’t necessarily obvious and therefore, may help you separate from a contest that features thousands of lineups.

Week 5 DFS NFL Sleepers, Fades, Contrarian, and Pivot Plays on FanDuel


CHALK: Russell Wilson @ LAR ($8.0k FanDuel)
PIVOT: Ben Roethlsiberger vs. JAX ($7.9k FanDuel)
We wrote up Russell Wilson in our main FanDuel article as a play for week 5. Wilson might not be widely popular in all formats, but should be a popular GPP play after putting up huge numbers in consecutive weeks. Big Ben, on the other hand, has yet to crack 18 FD points in any outing this year despite drawing some plus matchups on the road. Of course he’s been far better at home over recent seasons, posting a 116.7 Passer Rating and averaging 319.2 passing YPG at home with a weak 78.4 rating and 9:8 TD:INT ratio on the road last year. With only one home start under his belt and an overachieving Jags defense on tap, the DFS public might not be on Roethlisberger too much and a Ben/Antonio Brown stack has a ton of upside after AB threw a fit last week and could get the squeaky wheel treatment. 

FADE: Andy Dalton vs. BUF ($7.1k FanDuel)
Since Bill Lazor took over as Bengals OC, Dalton’s been great, peaking with 286 passing yards and 4 TDs in last week’s romp over the Browns. Yet this Sunday he faces a Bills team that’s only allowed 1 passing TD through 4 games while giving up the fourth-fewest passing YPG (204.4) in the NFL thus far. Eli Manning ($7000) could serve as a pivot off Dalton in this price range at home against the Chargers. 

Running Backs

FADE: Todd Gurley vs. SEA ($7.8k FanDuel)
While the Seahawks have struggled in run defense this year, they’re overall defense remains elite and team speed is its greatest asset. Gurley took a slant over the middle for a long TD and racked up yards in closing time at Dallas last week, but seriously benefitted from the Cowboys deficiencies and absence of captain Sean Lee (hamstring). Bobby Wagner and company could focus in on the focal point of the Rams offense to this point and make a statement against the upstart Rams. Melvin Gordon ($7.1k) is a great GPP pivot and will likely have a quarter of the ownership.

SLEEPER: Wayne Gallman vs. LAC ($5.2k FanDuel)
Even if Paul Perkins (ribs) and/or Orleans Darkwa (back) is able to return to action this week, the Giants should give Gallman his fair share of carries. The 6-foot brusier out of Clemson turned 13 touches into 60 yards and a TD last Sunday and more importantly, churned out the tough yards between the tackles that the Giants completely lacked over their first few games. This week the G-Men host a dysfunctional Chargers team that’s given up the second-most RuYPG (163.5) in the NFL through 4 weeks and appears to be losing its fighting spirit due to lack of fan support.

Wide Receivers

CHALK: Jordy Nelson @ DAL ($8.6k FanDuel)
CONTRARIAN: Randall Cobb/Geronimo Allison @ DAL ($6.6k/$4.6k FanDuel)
There’s nothing wrong with using Jordy in a plus matchup with a lofty 52.5-point Over/Under set in Dallas to lead all Sunday games. Yet you can differentiate in tournaments by pairing Aaron Rodgers with other receiving options or simply using Allison as a stand-alone massive value. The big-bodied WR should see plenty of snaps with Davante Adams (concussion) doubtful to suit up and he produced 122 yards and 6 catches while playing on 67% of offensive snaps in Week 3 when Randall Cobb sat out. Dallas is quite thin at the back end with DBs Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr gone along with SS Barry Church and Aaron Rodgers will find ways to put points on the board if Dallas tries to limit Jordy following his two-touchdown performance last Thursday.

SLEEPER(S): Pierre Garcon/Aldrick Robinson @ IND ($6.7k/$4.6k FanDuel)
Garcon is a bit of a contrarian play in a popular price range while Robinson could serve as a deep sleeper if Marquise Goodwin hasn’t cleared the league’s concussion protocol by Sunday. With Goodwin leaving the game last Sunday with his 4th concussion in 14 months, Robinson drew 12 targets, yet only corralled three of them for 52 yards. Both are deep threats that could have success against a Colts team that’s already given up a stunning 26 pass plays of 20-plus yards this season and if Garcon draws coverage from CB Vontae Davis, Robinson might see double-digit targets once again from QB Brian Hoyer.

SLEEPER/CONTRARIAN: Donte Moncrief vs. SF ($5.1k FanDuel)
This game has shootout potential with two of the worst defensive teams in the NFL meeting under a dome and while T.Y. Hilton could see a high ownership rate as recommended in our FanDuel Plays article, Moncrief is a contrarian punt play in a low price range. Both WRs are in play once again now that Jacoby Brissett has turned the Colts offense around to an extent. Moncrief flashed his red zone ability with an 18-yard TD on a jump ball and his potential in that area makes him a great GPP play on FanDuel.

FADE: Alshon Jeffery vs. ARI ($7.1k FanDuel)
There’s no way I would touch Jeffery in cash games and he’s probably worth avoiding altogether in case the Cardinals decide to shadow him with elite CB Patrick Peterson. Nelson Agholor isn’t nearly as much of a threat on the other side of the field and while Zach Ertz could keep the chains moving for Philly at home, a TD for Jeffery seems like a real long shot against a tough secondary.

Tight Ends

FADE: Travis Kelce @ HOU ($7.0k FanDuel)
This is really a recommendation to fade most of the high-priced TEs in Week 5, although you can’t really argue with Zach Ertz in cash games given his consistency thus far. Kelce draws a tough matchup against a Texans team that ranks 3rd in DVOA defense against opposing TEs and is much more vulnerable along the boundaries with top CB A.J. Bouye now in Jacksonville. Kelce had a huge game last week against a Redskins defense that struggles against TEs but should slow down this Sunday.

SLEEPER: Jared Cook vs. BAL ($5.3k FanDuel)
You can also consider Martellus Bennett at this price tag if you’d rather be tied to an elite QB, but the fact that E.J. Manuel is far from elite is what should keep Cook’s ownership rate way down. He narrowly missed a couple more huge plays in a loss at Denver last Sunday and Manuel’s limitations could force him to look at his oversized target more often than his struggling WRs in Crabtree and Cooper. Baltimore happens to be ranked dead last in DVOA defense against opposing TEs and gave a monstrous game to the previously invisible Marcedes Lewis two weeks ago.

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Nate Weitzer Avatar
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Nate Weitzer

Nate Weitzer is a successful DFS player at DraftKings and FanDuel with numerous tournament wins in NBA and NFL contests. He's been writing about DFS for several years, specializing in NBA picks and advice while continuing to build his bankroll across the daily fantasy industry. When he's not playing DFS, Weitzer is often covering high school sports in the greater Boston area for outlets such as The Boston Globe, or playing basketball himself. Follow Nate on Twitter @Nweitzer7.

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