The dog days of October are upon us. There are a lot of big conference matchups on the calendar this time of year. We see less of the blowouts of September, when many teams are basically playing tune-up games to get ready for the conference schedule. Things are pretty straightforward from here on out, and value is tougher and tougher to find on these DFS slates.
Here’s a breakdown of all the games, followed by my positional rankings, sorted by slate (based on value, not raw points):
Here you can choose which slate you’d like to jump to, or you can skip right to the rankings:
DraftKings Main Slate, 12:00 pm (11 games)
OKLAHOMA STATE @ TEXAS TECH (12:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Oklahoma State -10 | Total: 63.0
This Texas Tech passing game doesn’t work so well without Alan Bowman under center – the Red Raiders could only muster 16 points against Oklahoma last week.
By now, you already know who you’re playing from the Oklahoma State offense – Spencer Sanders ($7,600), Chuba Hubbard ($8,900), and Tylan Wallace ($7,300) have each hit high-end tournament value in four of five weeks this season – and now get to toy around with the Texas Tech defense.
DFS Targets: QB Spencer Sanders (OKST), RB Chuba Hubbard (OKST), WR Tylan Wallace (OKST)
UTAH STATE @ LSU (12:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: LSU -27.5 | Total: 73.0
There are two ways you can go in this one. Fade the pass game and get Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($6,100) in there, or stack QB Joe Burrow ($8,700) with one of his receivers, and fade CEH. I think I prefer the latter but am slightly indifferent.
I somehow think Justin Jefferson ($7,200) will continue to be the highest owned LSU receiver, but I’m going right back to Ja’Marr Chase ($7,000) again. This is not a point-chasing situation. I said prior to his breakout game that I thought the coaching staff viewed him as the top guy in the offense – that much was clear to me when they held him – and only him – out of the Northwestern State game as a healthy scratch. He comes out in week four and goes for 10-229-4 and had more passing targets from Burrow than Jefferson and Marshall combined.
Marshall is out this week, so I also see Stephen Sullivan ($4,000) as a big value on this slate – with or without the other LSU players in your lineup.
Utah State plays at an extremely fast pace, so look for a heavy play volume for this entire LSU offense.
DFS Targets: QB Joe Burrow (LSU), RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire (LSU), WR Ja’Marr Chase (LSU), WR Stephen Sullivan (LSU)
OKLAHOMA @ KANSAS (12:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Oklahoma -32.5 | Total: 67.5
Might Oklahoma’s defense be a lot better than we expected? Well, I think they’re good enough to prevent anyone on the Kansas offense from going off.
How can we possibly decide between these quarterbacks this week? Out of all the great options on the slate, I think Jalen Hurts ($9,300) may be the best…again. Hurts is looking like the Heisman favorite thus far, while averaging over 46 DK points per game. This Kansas defense sure isn’t going to slow him down.
Trey Sermon ($5,400) had a big fantasy day last week, but let’s take a step back. Sermon had just 7 carries and is averaging only 8 carries per game to this point. Is there a chance he can punch in two short TD’s again? Sure – I’m just not willing to bet on it.
There is the CeeDee Lamb ($8,000) we all expected to see this season. Lamb went for a massive 7-185-3 stat line last week – reminding everyone who the top dog in this WR group is. I still like Charleston Rambo ($6,600), but he drops to being only a GPP option for me this week after seeing just 3 targets against Texas Tech.
DFS Targets: QB Jalen Hurts (OU), WR CeeDee Lamb (OU), WR Charleston Rambo (OU)
PURDUE @ PENN STATE (12:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Penn State -28.5 | Total: 56.0
Rondale Moore is out for Purdue, and all of a sudden, this game looks like just another tune-up for the Nittany Lions. We know Purdue will be chucking the ball, but Jack Plummer ($6,200) stinks, and this Penn State defense doesn’t. Jackson Anthrop ($4,000) will take over in the slot for Moore and is about the only thing I like about the Boilermakers this week in DFS.
Sean Clifford ($7,100) went for 40+ DK points against Maryland last week. I don’t think he gets there again, but I do think he hits GPP value with relative ease.
I’ll likely be playing Clifford without any of his receivers, but K.J. Hamler ($6,000) is worth a GPP shot or two in this matchup.
DFS Targets: QB Sean Clifford (PSU), WR K.J. Hamler (PSU), WR Jackson Anthrop (PUR)
IOWA @ MICHIGAN (12:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Michigan -4 | Total: 47.5
I don’t like much about this game offensively, but Iowa has no pass rush at all, and Shea Patterson ($6,400) actually flashed last week. It was Rutgers, yes, but sometimes you need games like those to get your mojo back. Patterson is always a scrambling threat in the red zone, evidenced by his 3 rushing scores last week, so I’ll take a GPP shot or two with him here.
DFS Targets: QB Shea Patterson (MICH)
BOSTON COLLEGE @ LOUISVILLE (12:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Louisville -5 | Total: 60.5
Tutu Atwell ($5,700) is still pretty cheap on DK but continues to deliver for the Cardinals. I still don’t trust Malik Cunningham ($6,400) enough to use in lineups, so Atwell is where my Louisville exposure ends.
BC RB A.J. Dillon ($7,900) is averaging almost 25 carries per game and has scored 7 times in five games thus far. He should be able to pile up the yardage as usual this week and is one of the top RB plays on the slate.
DFS Targets: WR Chatarius Atwell (UL), RB A.J. Dillon (BC)
ILLINOIS @ MINNESOTA (3:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Minnesota -14 | Total: 57.0
No interest in the Illinois offense from me.
Minnesota dominates time of possession, and I’m a big fan of this offense here. QB Tanner Morgan ($6,500) is cheap, and is coming off a big performance, finishing with 32 DK points against Purdue in week five. I think his floor is the 18 fantasy points he put up against a better Illinois team last year – and I’d be fine with that in cash games.
Tyler Johnson ($6,600) and Rashod Bateman ($6,400) are both big-play receivers that should hit cash value with ease.
Rodney Smith ($5,600) becomes an all-down back once again if Ibrahim misses this one. It’s a 3:30pm lock, so something to keep an eye on.
DFS Targets: QB Tanner Morgan (MINN), RB Rodney Smith (MINN), WR Tyler Johnson (MINN), WR Rashod Bateman (MINN)
AUBURN @ FLORIDA (3:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Auburn -2.5 | Total: 48.5
There are too many good spots on this slate to force anything from this game. I’m surprised to even see a 48.5 total – I think it finishes much lower than that.
DFS Targets: None
TEXAS @ WEST VIRGINIA (3:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Texas -10.5 | Total: 61.0
Sam Ehlinger ($8,500) went for 40 DK points against West Virginia last year, but that was in a shootout – I’m not sure the Mountaineers can keep it close this season. I still think Ehlinger hits cash value with ease, though.
I don’t think we can expect Collin Johnson back, so fire up Devin Duvernay ($7,500) again as the WR1 – he’s averaging 27 DK points per game in 2019.
DFS Targets: QB Sam Ehlinger (UT), WR Devin Duvernay (UT)
BAYLOR @ KANSAS STATE (3:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Kansas State -1.5 | Total: 48.5
This looks like it will be a close game. Kansas State’s defense looks like the real deal – holding Oklahoma State to just 26 points and Mississippi State to 24. I’ll be fading this game. Mims is always a threat in DFS, but there are so many good options at WR this week.
DFS Targets: None
ARIZONA @ COLORADO (4:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Colorado -4 | Total: 62.5
There are a number of injuries to watch for in this one. Khalil Tate and J.J. Taylor are both very questionable. We actually saw a four-man RB committee with Taylor out last week, so I’ll be passing on that situation.
Grant Gunnell ($6,700) looked great against UCLA, but he’s still inexperienced, and there are still about 8 better options than him on this slate.
Tayvian Cunningham ($3,000) didn’t have a big game statistically, but he was targeted five times, and caught 4 balls. I still love this kid in GPP’s as a burner who can break off a big play at a moment’s notice. Sullivan and Anthrop make far better cash options though.
On Colorado’s side, Laviska Shenault ($7,000) is also very questionable. Tony Brown ($5,700) went for 9-150-3 in his absence last week and is a nice GPP option is Shenault is out.
Alex Fontenot ($6,000) handled 25 carries without Shenault playing for most of week five’s game. I’d expect another run-heavy game plan if Shenault isn’t in the lineup again this week. This may be a situation to just avoid, though, as it’s the last game to lock, and we may not know if Shenault (or Tate, or Taylor…) plays until right before kickoff.
DFS Targets: WR Tayvian Cunningham (ARIZ), RB Alex Fontenot (COL), WR Tony Brown (COL)
Main Slate (12:00 pm) Positional Rankings (ranked by value)
- Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma, $9,300 (Cash or GPP)
- Sam Ehlinger, Texas, $8,500 (Cash or GPP)
- Joe Burrow, LSU, $8,700 (Cash or GPP)
- Sean Clifford, Penn State, $7,100 (Cash or GPP)
- Spencer Sanders, Oklahoma State, $7,600 (Cash or GPP)
- Tanner Morgan, Minnesota, $6,500 (Cash or GPP)
- Shea Patterson, Michigan, $6,400 (GPP)
- Chuba Hubbard, Oklahoma State, $8,900 (Cash or GPP)
- A.J. Dillon, Boston College, $7,900 (Cash or GPP)
- Rodney Smith, Minnesota, $5,600 (Cash or GPP) *Cash only if Ibrahim is out.
- Clyde Edwards-Helaire, LSU, $6,100 (Cash or GPP)
- Alex Fontenot, Colorado, $6,000 (Cash or GPP) *Cash only if Shenault is out.
- Tylan Wallace, Oklahoma State, $7,300 (Cash or GPP)
- CeeDee Lamb, Oklahoma, $8,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Ja’Marr Chase, LSU, $7,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Tyler Johnson, Minnesota, $6,600 (Cash or GPP)
- Rashod Bateman, Minnesota, $6,400 (Cash or GPP)
- Devin Duvernay, Texas, $7,500 (Cash or GPP)
- Charleston Rambo, Oklahoma, $6,600 (GPP)
- Chatarius Atwell, Louisville, $5,700 (Cash or GPP)
- K.J. Hamler, Penn State, $6,000 (GPP)
- Stephen Sullivan, LSU, $4,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Jackson Anthrop, Purdue, $4,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Tony Brown, Colorado, $5,700 (GPP)
- Tayvian Cunningham, Arizona, $3,000 (GPP)
DraftKings Night Slate, 7:00 pm (7 games)
GEORGIA @ TENNESSEE (7:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Georgia -24.5 | Total: 51.5
I’m not sure what to make of this matchup. Tennessee did a good job at shutting down the Bulldog pass game last season and despite their current record, their defense ranks a respectable No. 28 against the pass.
I think I’ll stick with RB D’Andre Swift ($7,800) here – and even he’s a GPP-only play for me.
DFS Targets: RB D’Andre Swift (UGA)
MICHIGAN STATE @ OHIO STATE (7:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Ohio State -20 | Total: 49.5
Ohio State has dominated everyone they’ve faced thus far, while the Spartans are coming off a game in which their defense gave up 31 points to Indiana – a team the Buckeyes beat 51-10.
I actually think this matchup will bring Justin Fields ($8,300) ownership down a smidge, and I’m ok with that – I’m still going to hammer him. He’s got an Alabama-like receiver corps, with different guys going off in different weeks, so let’s just leave him naked.
I do think Michigan State can slow down J.K. Dobbins ($7,200), and I won’t be playing him here without any kind of matchup discount.
DFS Targets: QB Justin Fields (OSU)
VANDERBILT @ OLE MISS (7:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Ole Miss -7 | Total: 63.5
Game script has not favored Scottie Phillips ($5,700) for the past couple of games, but as 7.5-point favorites, I think Ole Miss turns back to him here – especially against a Vanderbilt defense that’s allowed 5.2 yards per carry thus far.
WR Elijah Moore ($6,000) should also get back to his big games after running into the Alabama brick wall in week five. The quarterback situation is up in the air for this Ole Miss team. Matt Corral is questionable to play. Even if he does, can they take John Rhys Plumlee ($6,200) out after he just put up 31 points on the best team in the country? If Corral is out, I will definitely have some Plumlee exposure. We’ll have to keep an eye on this situation.
For as good as Ole Miss has been against the run, their defense ranks No. 123 against the pass. Kalija Lipscomb ($6,200) should have another big game – he’s gone for 18+ DK points in six of his last eight games.
I do still want some exposure to Ke’Shawn Vaughn ($6,900). He’s a guy that seems to have big games against conference opponents, going for 20+ DK points in five of seven conference games thus far, with the only two misses coming against Georgia.
DFS Targets: QB John Rhys Plumlee (MISS), RB Scottie Phillips (MISS), WR Elijah Moore (MISS), RB Ke’Shawn Vaughn (VAND), WR Kalija Lipscomb (VAND)
TULSA @ SMU (7:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: SMU -13 | Total: 64.0
SMU is in the thick of the race for the conference championship, with a now-explosive offense under QB Shane Buechele ($6,800). They’ve scored at least 37 points in all five games this season and have gone over 40 in their last four. Beuchele has a nice salary and can be stacked with either James Proche ($7,500) or Reggie Roberson ($6,300)…or both.
RB Xavier Jones ($7,400) is averaging 28 DK points per game, and has been ultra-consistent, with no less than 20 in one game. He should have another big performance against a leaky Tulsa defense.
For Tulsa, I have some interest in WR Sam Crawford ($5,100), but that’s about it – he’s the WR1 on this team and has gone for 16+ DK points in three of four this season.
DFS Targets: QB Shane Beuchele (SMU), RB Xavier Jones (SMU), WR James Proche (SMU), WR Reggie Roberson (SMU), WR Sam Crawford (TLSA)
CALIFORNIA @ OREGON (8:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Oregon -18 | Total: 46.5
This should be a low-scoring game, so I don’t have much interest for DFS. However, Brenden Schooler ($3,000) returns for Oregon, and is listed as co-starter at WR. It won’t take much to hit value on the stone-cold min-price, so I think we can use him in all formats.
DFS Targets: WR Brenden Schooler (ORE)
PITTSBURGH @ DUKE (8:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Duke -4.5 | Total: 47.5
Maurice Ffrench ($5,700) is a target-hog for this Pitt offense – with at least 9 in each game this season. He’s the only piece I’m interested in on the Pitt side.
By all measurements, Quentin Harris ($7,900) has been an upgrade for this Duke offense over Daniel Jones. He’s completing 72.9% of his passes, with a 10-2 TD to interception ratio, and Duke is now 3-1. Harris also has back-to-back 100+ yard rushing games, so he’s an extremely solid fantasy option this week.
Harris has numerous options on the outside, but I actually like RB Deon Jackson ($5,200) as much for his pass-catching as his rushing ability. Jackson is coming off a 5-catch game and caught 3 for 89 yards against Pitt in 2018’s contest.
DFS Targets: WR Maurice Ffrench (PITT), QB Quentin Harris (DUKE), RB Deon Jackson (DUKE)
OREGON STATE @ UCLA (9:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: UCLA -6 | Total: 65.5
Isaiah Hodgins ($7,600) just keeps piling up the fantasy points – he’s my top play at WR on this slate. I also like Kolby Taylor ($3,000) as a cheap GPP option. Taylor saw his passing targets shoot up to 7 last week, and he’s a highly skilled young receiver at minimum price. UCLA has the second-worst passing defense in the country, so there should be plenty of balls to go around. QB Jake Luton ($6,100) has a very nice salary for this matchup.
Jermar Jefferson ($6,600) returns healthy this week, but I’d like to see him actually finish out a game before investing in him – he managed to complete just two series before taking himself out against Stanford last week.
I like both of UCLA’s running backs, although Demetric Felton ($6,700) is actually listed at WR still. He has two games with 7 receptions, and if this game shoots out like Vegas expects it to, he should see a lot of work.
Still, this offense runs through Joshua Kelley ($6,400). He had 28 touches last week against Arizona, and his workload has been trending up. He’s a safe bet for cash value, and one of the top RB’s on the slate.
DFS Targets: WR Isaiah Hodgins (ORST), WR Kolby Taylor (ORST), RB Joshua Kelley (UCLA), WR Demetric Felton (UCLA)
Night Slate (7:00 pm) Positional Rankings (ranked by value)
- Justin Fields, Ohio State, $8,300 (Cash or GPP)
- Quentin Harris, Duke, $7,900 (Cash or GPP)
- Shane Beuchele, SMU, $6,800 (Cash or GPP)
- Jake Luton, Oregon State, $6,100 (Cash or GPP)
- John Rhys Plumlee, Ole Miss, $6,200 (Cash or GPP) *Only if Corral is out.
- Joshua Kelley, UCLA, $6,400 (Cash or GPP)
- Xavier Jones, SMU, $7,400 (Cash or GPP)
- Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Vanderbilt, $6,900 (Cash or GPP)
- D’Andre Swift, Georgia, $7,800 (GPP)
- Scottie Phillips, Ole Miss, $5,700 (Cash or GPP)
- Deon Jackson, Duke, $5,200 (Cash or GPP)
- Isaiah Hodgins, Oregon State, $7,600 (Cash or GPP)
- Reggie Roberson, SMU, $6,300 (Cash or GPP)
- James Proche, SMU, $7,500 (Cash or GPP)
- Kalija Lipscomb, Vanderbilt, $6,200 (Cash or GPP)
- Sam Crawford, Tulsa, $5,100 (Cash or GPP)
- Elijah Moore, Ole Miss, $6,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Maurice Ffrench, Pittsburgh, $5,700 (Cash or GPP)
- Demetric Felton, UCLA, $6,700 (Cash or GPP)
- Brenden Schooler, Oregon, $3,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Kolby Taylor, Oregon State, $3,000 (GPP)
DraftKings Late Night Slate, 10:00 pm (3 games)
SAN DIEGO STATE @ COLORADO STATE (10:00 pm Kickoff)
Spread: San Diego State -7.5 | Total: 50.5
Figuring out the San Diego State running back situation may be the key to this slate. Juwan Washington ($6,800) is questionable – but seems likely. Jordan Byrd ($5,000) is also questionable and is next in line if Washington can’t go. And Chance Bell ($4,800) handled 18 carries in relief of the top two injured backs in week four. I have no idea how this will shake out, but I don’t expect much ownership for any of these guys, so it’s something to keep an eye on leading up to lock.
Kobe Smith ($6,000) has had two really good games for the Aztecs, and two really poor ones. His good ones have gone for 26 and 29 DK points, so I will want some GPP exposure to that ceiling on a three-game slate.
Although they have the nation’s second-ranked rush defense, San Diego State is just No. 73 against the pass. Game-log warriors are going to write off the CSU pass game because of last week’s poor stats, but they probably won’t notice that those numbers came in a monsoon. I was quite high on the Rams offense last week, and that doesn’t change for me this weekend. I will have a lot of QB Patrick O’Brien ($6,500), WR Dante Wright ($5,900), and WR Nate Craig-Myers ($4,600) – assuming Warren Jackson is out again.
I don’t believe I can pay up for Marvin Kinsey ($7,300) in this matchup though.
DFS Targets: WR Kobe Smith (SDSU), QB Patrick O’Brien (CSU), WR Dante Wright (CSU), WR Nate Craig-Myers (CSU)
BOISE STATE @ UNLV (10:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Boise State -23 | Total: 57.0
I’d expect this to be all Boise State – they are in a different class than the UNLV Rebels.
Most of my Boise State exposure will be through two players – QB Hank Bachmeier ($6,900) and WR C.T. Thomas ($7,000). My plan is to have one of the San Diego State running backs in my lineup, but I will have some Robert Mahone ($6,400) as well, because, who else are you going to play on this slate?
DFS Targets: QB Hank Bachmeier (BSU), RB Robert Mahone (BSU), WR C.T. Thomas (BSU)
WASHINGTON @ STANFORD (10:30 pm Kickoff)
Spread: Washington -15.5 | Total: 51.5
Before the season started, the Huskies probably had this game circled as a key matchup – but things have changed, and this should be an easy win for UW.
Stanford has been decent against the run, so I look for Jacob Eason ($7,200) to bomb away a bit. If I’m stacking up Huskies, Aaron Fuller ($6,200) would be my preference at WR. Fuller’s passing targets have gone from 6 to 7 to 8 to 11 this season – Eason is really starting to lock in on him.
Salvon Ahmed ($7,100) had the best game of his career against USC last week, but he’s been priced out of my comfort zone. He’ll be in a few GPP’s, but that might be it.
DFS Targets: QB Jacob Eason (UW), RB Salvon Ahmed (UW), WR Aaron Fuller (UW)
Late Night Slate (10:00 pm) Positional Rankings (ranked by value)
- Hank Bachmeier, $6,900 (Cash or GPP)
- Jacob Eason, Washington, $7,200 (Cash or GPP)
- Patrick O’Brien, Colorado State, $6,500 (Cash or GPP)
- Robert Mahone, $6,400 (Cash or GPP)
- Salvon Ahmed, Washington, $7,100 (GPP)
- San Diego State starter – we’ll keep an eye on this leading up to lock.
- C.T. Thomas, Boise State, $7,000 (Cash or GPP)
- Dante Wright, Colorado State, $5,900 (Cash or GPP)
- Aaron Fuller, Washington, $6,200 (Cash or GPP)
- Nate Craig-Myers, Colorado State, $4,600 (Cash or GPP)
- Kobe Smith, San Diego State, $6,000 (Cash or GPP)