By Jack Thomason–
(CBS) Let’s check out the Week 6 sleepers and daily fantasy value plays.
Brock Osweiler, Texans (vs. Colts) — Osweiler has had a rough few outings of late, but the competition has been difficult and will continue to be with the exception of this week. He gets a Colts defense that’s allowing 301 yards per game through the air and has just one interception. Indianapolis ranks 30th in pass DVOA, and this is a game in which Osweiler can return value. Most fantasy players won’t be paying any attention to Osweiler after he was dominated by the Vikings last week, and that’s when you want to pounce. (FanDuel: $6900; DraftKings: $5400)
Dak Prescott, Cowboys (at Packers) — Prescott is consistently providing value and consistently being doubted in tougher matchups. Heck, I did it myself last week against Cincinnati. This week he travels to Green Bay to face off against a team that ranks second against the run in DVOA but 19th against the pass. With Green Bay allowing an astonishingly low 42.8 yards per game on the ground, Prescott and that passing offense will likely need to keep up with the Packers offense through the air. The Packers are allowing 275 yards per game through the air, and Prescott can always run for a score as well. (FD: $7200, DK- $5900)
James Starks, Packers (vs. Cowboys) — Green Bay has an implied point total of 25.75 and is a four-point home favorite. The Cowboys rank 17th in run DVOA, and Eddie Lacy may not be suiting up in this contest due to an injured ankle. That would mean plenty of work for James Starks in a positively scripted matchup. The other benefit is Starks’ ability in the passing game. He has 112 career receptions and can do damage out of the backfield. Dallas is a middle-of-the-pack team at defending running backs in the receiving game, ranking 15th in DVOA. (FD: $4500; DK: $3400)
Ryan Mathews, Eagles (at Redskins) — Everyone loves playing running backs against the Redskins. If the Ravens fed Terrance West more than his 11 carries, he could’ve had a much larger day than 95 yards on the ground. Mathews has showed he’s still the lead back in a committee, touching the ball 16 times for 75 yards and adding a touchdown through the air last week. The Redskins rank 32nd in run DVOA and are allowing 130 yards per game on the ground and a league-high eight scores. (FD: $6500; DK: $4900)
Michael Thomas, Saints (vs. Panthers) — The Buccaneers decided to attack the Panthers via the ground game Monday night, but the week before, it was Julio Jones and Matt Ryan going for 300 and 500 yards, respectively, through the air. Thomas has emerged as the go-to receiver in the red zone for Drew Brees and has seen the second-most targets per game for the Saints with 7.8. The lines aren’t out yet for this game, given Cam Newton’s concussion situation, but the Panthers do rank 25th against “other receivers” (slot) and 22nd overall in pass DVOA. This game sets up nicely for Thomas. (FD: $5400; DK: $4300)
John Brown, Cardinals (vs. Jets) — The Jets have just been crushed by the passing game. Darrelle Revis looks like a shell of himself and is banged up. They’ve allowed the most pass plays of more than 40 yards on the season, rank 32nd in pass DVOA, have allowed the second-most yards per game (302) and have allowed the third-most touchdowns through the air (12.) You get the point. Carson Palmer should be back, and the Cardinals badly need to get back to .500 and regroup. When Palmer and Brown were last on the field together, Brown led the team with 15 targets and piled up 10 catches for 144 yards. He’s be a big part of their Vegas implied point total (27) given that the Jets rank third in run DVOA. (FD: $6600; DK: $4500)
C.J. Fiedorowicz, Texans (vs. Colts) — Here we are back with the vaunted Colts defense. They rank 31st against tight ends in pass DVOA, and Fiedorowicz has been a larger part of the offense since coach Bill O’Brien took over play-calling duties. He’s tallied 13 targets, eight receptions, 109 yards and a touchdown over the last two weeks and seems to be a comforting presence for Osweiler in the middle of the field. Add to that Ryan Griffin’s injury and uncertain status for Sunday’s game, and you have a recipe for value. (FD: $5100; DK: $2500)
Charles Clay, Bills (vs. 49ers) — Ever since Sammy Watkins went down with a foot injury, the Bills offense has predominantly relied on LeSean McCoy, but they’ve needed someone to step up in the passing game. Robert Woods has been part of the solution, but over the last two weeks, Clay has picked up some of the slack. Clay has grabbed 10 balls on 12 targets for 120 yards and gets a 49ers defense that has allowed the 11th-most fantasy points to tight ends. (FD: $5300; DK: $2900)
Just missed: Alex Smith, Trevor Siemian, Spencer Ware, Cameron Artis-Payne, Sammie Coates, Davante Adams, Hunter Henry and Virgil Green.
Jack Thomason is 670 The Score’s fantasy football expert and co-host of “Chicago’s Fantasy Football Today,” which can be heard every Sunday during football season from 8-9 a.m. CT on WSCR-670 and670thescore.com/listen. Follow him on Twitter @jthomason77 and feel free to ask fantasy questions.