Week 5 NFL DFS Main Slate Daily Plug

Week 5 NFL DFS Main Slate Daily Plug

The following article appears on OccupyFantasy.com every Friday! Become a member for as little as $2/week with an annual subscription for NFL DFS analysis, as well as MLB, NBA, NHL and more.

The Daily Plug is our weekly NFL DFS picks write-up that highlights the top plays from our Occupy Model. The Plug then provides actionable information for each slate by making specific recommendations on how much of your bankroll to allocate and exactly what types of contests to play — all depending on the type of player you are.

Occupy Fantasy’s Chris Rooney has written up a guide to the slate using the Occupy Model, betting line movements, and news updates. Be sure to read all the way through to the end!

Follow Chris on Twitter @cdr02989 for updates through lock.

Keep an eye on this page, updates will be made IN BLUE on Sunday mornings if anything changes. For NFL Inactives, visit this link to the NFL.com page – updates roughly 90 minutes before kickoff for each game.

Consider the Plug an in-depth road map for the main slate. Let’s get to it!

Want analysis for every player in Week 5? Check out the Occupy Model. Want help building lineups? Our partner, DFS Magic, is offering an optimizer FREE for all Occupy members through the end of October.


Biggest Favorites:
Patriots, -17
Eagles, -15.5
Chiefs, -12 (Yahoo! only)
Chargers, -7
Bears, -5

Highest Game Totals:
IND@KC, 56 (Yahoo! only)
ARI@CIN, 47.5
GB@DAL, 47
TB@NO, 45.5

Highest Implied Team Totals:
Chiefs, 34 (Yahoo! only)
Eagles, 29.5
Patriots, 29.5
Texans, 27
Chargers, 25.75

Lowest Team Totals:
Redskins, 12.5
Jets, 14
Bills, 17.75
Raiders, 17.75
Broncos, 18.75


Each week, we’ll point out three games to stack based on the Occupy Model, betting line information such as game totals, implied team totals, line movements, and more.


The Buccaneers head to the Superdome to face the Saints. The game’s total has actually dropped by 1.5 points since lines opened; many of the options here, however, feel very mispriced on this slate. Tampa Bay has the number one rush defense in football through four weeks, which means it’s time for New Orleans to turn Teddy Bridgewater loose. With Michael Thomas’ price depressed, and seemingly ageless speedster Ted Ginn Jr available in the bargain bin, there’s plenty of opportunity to get exposure here. Jameis Winston is ranked ahead of Teddy in our Model, and showed us last week he may finally be taking to Bruce Arians’ offense. Mike Evans and Chris Godwin remain great stacking options with him on the Tampa side.

Matt Ryan of the Falcons is actually the number one quarterback in the Occupy Model (which is primarily designed to rank plays for high-risk contests) as of Friday. Julio Jones projects to be the 4th highest owned WR on both FanDuel and DraftKings on this slate and see 9.8 targets. Calvin Ridley and Mohamed Sanu are in play with over 5 targets expected, as well. For the Texans, Deshaun Watson gets to throw to two WRs who are both underperforming their intended air yards by over 40% – DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller V. Devonta Freeman is our highest ranked RB in this game.

The main attraction of the 4:00pm EST window on this slate is the game between the Packers and Cowboys. As home favorites, Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott make great plays for all contest formats this weekend. With Michael Gallup expected to return from meniscus surgery, he joins Amari Cooper as one of Dak’s top receiving options. Randall Cobb also gets a chance at revenge against his former franchise. For the Packers, Davante Adams will not make the trip to Dallas, so he will be inactive. Jamaal Williams is also out due to a concussion he suffered last week, so Aaron Jones should continue to see the majority of the backfield work. He has a 25.3 weighted-opportunity score in the Occupy Model. Veteran TEs Jason Witten and Jimmy Graham should both play roles in this game, while both Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Geronimo Allison expect to see increased work without Adams available.



Stud: Lamar Jackson (@ Pittsburgh)

We told you back in Week 1 to play Lamar Jackson before pricing caught up with his role. Here in Week 5, he’s the most expensive QB on the slate on DraftKings and FanDuel. Despite the price, he remains a great option due to his elite floor. He’s yet to give us less than 21.28 DraftKings points, and has seen 8 carries or more in his last 3 games. The Ravens average 72.5 offensive snaps per game, with roughly 35 pass and rush attempts each. Lamar’s 8.3 Y/A in the passing game and 6.61 yards per carry (YPC) put his expected median outcome at around 290 passing yards and 50 rushing yards in this game. It won’t take much more than that with touchdowns and long plays to get him to a value we need to pay off his salary.

Value: Teddy Bridgewater (vs. Tampa Bay)

Teams need to pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Despite facing Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, and Todd Gurley, the Bucs only allow opponents to earn 2.9 YPC and under 60 total rushing yards per game. Given the high quality of their opponents to date, their rush defense is seemingly legitimate. Bridgewater ranks very highly in our Model likely for this reason. Sean Payton will need to turn Teddy loose in order to find success against this Tampa defense. Bridgewater has been underwhelming – he’s only averaging 6.1 Y/A on the year, however, Tampa is allowing opponents to pass for over 300 yards per game at a 7.0 Y/A clip. We saw what Jared Goff was able to do for fantasy purposes against this defense last week – Teddy needs to be able to replicate that here for the Saints.

Value: Chase Daniel (vs. Oakland)

With Mitchell Trubisky going down with a shoulder injury last week, Chase Daniel steps in for the start in Week 5 against the 27th DVOA pass defense in the NFL per Football Outsiders. Daniel has been the epitome of a backup, averaging just 6.5 yards per pass attempt (Y/A) in his career. The Raiders allow 7.9 Y/A to opposing passers and generate the least amount of pressure on quarterbacks on the slate. At his low salary, Daniel opens up possibilities in low-risk contests to pay up for studs at other positions. He’s a 5 point favorite.


Stud: Christian McCaffrey (vs. Jacksonville)

In what feels like his now regularly scheduled appearance in the Main Slate Plug, Christian McCaffrey holds the highest RB rank in the Occupy Model on both DraftKings and FanDuel thanks to his 40.2 weighted-opportunity score. His dynamic role – 85% of Carolina’s carries, over 20% of the targets in the passing game – is the definition of matchup proof in fantasy football.

Stud: David Johnson (@ Cincinnati)

David Johnson already has the third-largest target share on the Cardinals through four weeks. With team target leader Christian Kirk out this week, and outside receiver Damiere Byrd also inactive, DJ should see an increased role in the passing game. He’s already run the second most routes out of the slot for RBs on the young season. Kyler Murray gets to face a Bengals defense allowing the 4th highest Y/A in the passing game, and he’ll need DJ there in addition to whatever work DJ gets on the ground. DJ has a 32.1 weighted-opportunity score in the Occupy Model.

Quick note: Cardinals owner Bill Bidwill passed away this week. Our thoughts are definitely with the Bidwill family as one of 32 ownership groups who support this game we love.

Value: Leonard Fournette (@ Carolina)

We’re taking the other side of the studs matchups in the value section this week! Fournette projects to be the highest owned RB on the slate on DraftKings, and 3rd highest owned on FanDuel. His 33.9 weighted-opportunity score is tied with Dalvin Cook for third-highest in the Occupy Model. While Lenny still hasn’t hit paydirt in 2019, he exploded for over 200 rushing yards last week, and still holds an elite role with 75% of Jacksonville’s carries, and 18% of their targets going his way. The Panthers allow opponents to average 4.9 YPC, 5th highest total in the NFL.

Value: Joe Mixon (vs. Arizona)

Arizona’s defense allows over 140 rushing yards per game to opponents, at a 4.8 YPC clip. As a 3 point home favorite, Mixon and the Bengals are in the best spot they’ve had all season. The one hole with this play? Cincinnati has the 2nd-worst run blocking offensive line in the NFL by Football Outsiders adjusted line yards. Mixon’s putrid 3.1 YPC on the year is largely explained by that inefficiency. Mixon, however, leads the Bengals in red zone opportunity, with 8 carries and 2 targets through 4 games. He and one of his teammates mentioned below are the best bets to find success for Cincinnati in Week 5.


Stud: Michael Thomas (vs. Tampa Bay)

Thomas projects to see 9.4 targets against the Buccaneers in the Occupy Model. There are only 4 WRs priced over $7,000 on DraftKings, and somehow, Thomas is not one of them. His targets through four games? 13-13-7-9. His massive 41% share of New Orleans’ passers air yards on the year trails only Robby Anderson, Terry McLaurin and Adam Thielen on their respective teams. While Thomas isn’t catching over 90% of passes thrown his way like he was for much of 2018, he’s still very efficient at an 80.95% catch rate. We mentioned why this should be a passing game script for New Orleans above under Teddy Bridgewater – Michael Thomas stands to benefit the most from that.

Stud: Chris Godwin (@ New Orleans)

After posting the most WR points in fantasy in Week 4, Godwin should be back on everyone’s radar, yet somehow, we have him projected at less than 10% ownership on both DraftKings and FanDuel. He’s cheaper than Mike Evans in this spot on DraftKings ($100 more on FanDuel), and projects for 7.7 targets in the Occupy Model. The Saints rank 21st by Football Outsiders DVOA against slot WRs, and 26th against WR2s. Last week is all the evidence we need to remind you to fade Godwin at your own risk.

Value: Jamison Crowder (@ Philadelphia)

After exploding for 17 targets from Sam Darnold in Week 1, Crowder’s workload has pulled back a bit, seeing just 6 targets against Cleveland and 5 against New England the last two games. He’s the slot route specialist for the Jets though with just a 6.4 yard average depth of target (aDOT). His 34% share of New York’s air yards trails only Robby Anderson for them on the season. As massive 15.5 point underdogs, the game script should favor Luke Falk peppering Crowder with targets on Sunday.

Value: Mohamed Sanu (@ Houston)

As the cheapest WR option in the Falcons passing game, Sanu is arguably under priced. He’s second on the team in target share at the position, and has the slot role locked down thanks to his 7.9 yard aDOT. We project him for 6.2 targets in this game, which has the highest total on the slate.


Stud: Darren Waller (vs. Chicago)

With a 29% target share, Waller is effectively the WR1 for the Raiders. His 5.3 aDOT suggests he’s the safety valve for Derek Carr while Tyrell Williams is the “home run hitter” he looks for deep. Waller’s seen at least 7 targets in all four games this year, and has yet to score less than 12.3 DraftKings points on the season. He’s simply still too cheap for his role. As 5 point underdogs, expect the Raiders to have to pass against the Bears, as they only allow an average of 61 rushing yards to opponents per game. We expect Waller to receive roughly 7.6 targets in Week 5.

Value: Tyler Eifert (vs. Arizona)

*cuts and pastes from the Will Dissly section last week*

Will Dissly, Week 4 – 7/57/1 on 8 targets, good for 18.7 DraftKings points.
Greg Olsen, Week 3 – 6/75/2 on 7 targets, good for 25.5 DraftKings points.
Mark Andrews, Week 2 – 8/112/1 on 9 targets, good for 28.2 DraftKings points.
T.J. Hockenson, Week 1 – 6/131/1 on 9 targets, good for 28.1 DraftKings points.

Eifert is the top ranked TE in the Occupy Model this week against the worst defense against the position on the season. We project him for just 4.5 targets, but the matchup and price make him a valuable consideration. Don’t overthink this.


Defenses are not typically going to be written up in detail in our Daily Plug on main slates. One of the optimal ways to select defenses for low-risk contests? Focus on defenses facing opponents with low Vegas team totals. We also want to target turnover prone quarterbacks when it makes sense. You shouldn’t ever pass on a player at another spot just to jam in a defense. We’ll always provide a list of low and high risk defenses in the player pool below.


With a significant edge due to seemingly low-priced studs, this is a great week to skew heavier towards high-risk contests with your bankroll spend. We still like playing about 6-8% here, but in order to maximize ceiling, you should play somewhere between 30-40% of that allocation in tournaments.

Spend the rest on low-risk in the same spots we normally recommend – H2Hs, single entry double ups (as always, multi-entry double ups are OK if you can max enter them).

Our studs and values by position are intended to be a roadmap to help you win in low-risk contests. For high-risk, there are plenty of strong GPP plays in the player pool, as well as contests for you to target.

For more information on contest selection and bankroll allocation, check out our MUST-READ Ultimate Guide e-book.



We’ve given you a player pool to work from below. In low-risk contests, you should continue to try and play 3 running backs from that group.

Building 5-10-20 or more lineups for these large-field GPPs? Stick to a core of top plays (outlined below) that are projected to be highly owned, and build game stacks around that core. We strongly recommend stacking the highest total games on the slate above to accomplish this. Our partner, DFS Magic, has a lineup builder you can use to set your groupings using the Occupy Model rankings!


Smaller Bankrolls

First and foremost, always play freerolls. DraftKings has two for you – one sponsored by Samuel Adams, and one sponsored by Straight Talk Wireless (Must be 21+ for the freerolls sponsored by alcoholic beverage companies).

Look for no-badge users for low-risk H2Hs in the lobby. On DraftKings, post your own H2Hs and make sure you limit the opponents to 1 entry (per price point) against you (FanDuel doesn’t have this option). With the rest of your low-risk allocation, play single-entry double ups.

This is likely most people reading this – single-entry GPPs are the best high-risk tournaments to play. You want to give yourself the best shot to win; being on a level playing field with every other user by max-entering a contest is the way to go. Single entry contests are the easiest places to do this.

The first place you can do that are with “Contests” – these low priority, blandly named GPPs come with smaller field sizes and (usually) less experienced players. On DraftKings, the $0.25, $1, and $3 Contests are good places to start looking at playing. On FanDuel, the single entry 3-100 Player leagues meet this criteria. Everyone is drawn to the sexy, high-dollar top prize contests – you can lay low in here and (hopefully) grow your bankroll. You can 20-25x your entry fee by beating just 99 other people in these formats – it’s a great place to play.

The $3 entry fee, NFL $100K Pylon or $12 entry fee, NFL $300K Fair Catch on DraftKings are great places to spend your high-risk allocation. On FanDuel, there is also the $5 entry fee, $125K Sun NFL Spike, $2 entry fee $35K Sun NFL Safety, and $1 entry fee $40K Sun NFL Squib you should look at for single entry GPPs.

You should continue to play satellites for Millionaire Maker tickets you can use in later weeks.

Want to practice your multi-entry skills? Max enter a three entry max contest like the $5 entry fee, $150K Nickel on DraftKings.

The $50K Quarter Jukebox is a 20 entry-max tournament that costs just $5 to play at $0.25 per entry. Practice your mass-multi entry skills with our optimizer with a shot to win $2,000!

Want an even bigger challenge? FanDuel has a 150-entry max contest at just $0.05 per entry, the $20K Sun NFL Pooch Punt.

Larger Bankrolls

100-player Leagues/Contests remain great places to play – on DraftKings look for Contests in the $5 to $50 entry fee range, these are the best places to build your allocation around.

We introduced 20 entry-max contests to the Smaller Bankroll contest players. At your level, you should consider max entering the $3 entry fee, $1.5M Play-Action on DraftKings. This contest comes with a shot of taking down $100K, so you should have exposure to that nice prize here.

You can also probably look at some of the higher dollar value single entry GPPs at your bankroll size – The $27 entry fee $75K Blind Side, $50 entry fee $150K Red Zone and $100 entry fee $300K Spy contest are the best ones available to you on DraftKings (there’s also a $100K Spy at the same entry fee with a smaller field).

For FanDuel users, you can consider the $1, 293 person WFFC Fan Championship on 12/15 satellites in addition to the NFL Sunday Million ones. The best single entry GPPs in the next tier up not mentioned above? The $25 entry fee, $100K Sun NFL Sweep, the $100 entry fee, $90K Sun NFL Cover 2, and the $50 entry fee, $70K Sun NFL Hot Route.

Largest Bankrolls

Have enough to (WITHIN our allocation guideline of 4-5% of your bankroll) max-enter a larger GPP? Congrats on being a big baller! Teach us your ways.

The $150 entry fee, $500K Power Sweep is a three entry-max GPP on DraftKings with a $100,000 prize to 1st (there’s also a $200K Power Sweep with a smaller field). Consider this heavily every week it’s offered at your bankroll size.

On DraftKings, the largest expense (and largest upside) play is the $4M Fantasy Football Millionaire, which is a 150-max contest with a $1 million dollar top-prize. This week’s milly maker also has a $100K bonus pool users who roster the highest scoring QB-WR stack will split. We like to say you shouldn’t play contests with your own dollars unless you can max enter them – the Milly Maker is no different.

The next best 150-max contest is the $9 entry fee, $500K Slant. It has one of the flattest payout structures on the slate, and a $50K top prize.

FanDuel users, you’ve got the $3M NFL Sunday Million which is a $9 entry fee 150-max contest with a $1 million dollar top-prize. There’s a bonus $50K prize pool each week this month for users who roster a player who scores an overtime touchdown in this contest.


If building player pools for mass-multi entry is your thing, consider using these names in addition to top plays above. Please remember – the Occupy Model is designed for high-risk contest optimization. Lower-ranked plays may still be great low-risk plays for that reason.


LOW-RISK: Matt Ryan, Kyle Allen, Carson Wentz, Dak Prescott, Tom Brady

HIGH-RISK: Jameis Winston, Mason Rudolph, DeShaun Watson, Aaron Rodgers


LOW-RISK: Dalvin Cook, Ezekiel Elliott, Austin Ekeler, James White, Mark Ingram II

HIGH RISK: Le’Veon Bell, Alvin Kamara, Devonta Freeman, David Montgomery, James Conner, Phillip Lindsay, Derrick Henry, Carlos Hyde, Melvin Gordon III, Ronald Jones II


LOW-RISK: Julio Jones, Keenan Allen, Allen Robinson, DeAndre Hopkins, Julian Edelman, Larry Fitzgerald

HIGH RISK: Marquise Brown, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Sterling Shepard, Tyler Boyd, Mike Evans, Amari Cooper, Curtis Samuel, John Brown, Adam Thielen, Emmanuel Sanders, Geronimo Allison, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Stefon Diggs, D.J. Moore, James Washington, Will Fuller V, Robby Anderson, Randall Cobb, Michael Gallup, Alshon Jeffery, Calvin Ridley, Ted Ginn Jr


LOW-RISK: Mark Andrews, Zach Ertz, Austin Hooper

HIGH RISK: O.J. Howard, Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten, Jared Cook


LOW-RISK: Minnesota Vikings, Buffalo Bills, Los Angeles Chargers, Chicago Bears, New England Patriots

HIGH-RISK: Carolina Panthers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Pittsburgh Steelers, Tennessee Titans, Philadelphia Eagles

Plays are listed in order of preference (OF Index, DK Index where applicable).

Situation statistics sourced from Pro-Football-Reference.com’s Play Index Finder. DVOA data from FootballOutsiders.com. Air yards data pulled from AirYards.com. All salaries from contest providers. While we like the player pool selected above, we reserve the right to roster other players should news and trends closer to lock push us in that direction. Pay attention to our stream schedule for discussion of those thoughts!