Ah, the beauty of Week 1 in Daily Fantasy Sports. We’ve got college football games spread across the opening weekend. That includes a bevy of matchups on Friday night.
It’s a West Coast-East Coast theme for me today, with my quarterback and wide receiver selections mostly coming from teams west of the Mississippi and my running backs from teams to the east.
Jordan Love, Utah State ($7,700 on DraftKings, $9,900 on FanDuel) – This QB loves to sling it, with 40+ passing attempts in three of the Aggies last four games of 2018, and he’s up against the weak Wake Forest defense. Love is capable of putting up monster DFS point totals, eclipsing 38 points four times last year. He probably won’t hit that high of a benchmark in a game in which oddsmakers are expecting Utah State to score around four touchdowns, but we will be happy with 30 points with Love’s salary level.
Jake Luton, Oregon State ($5,600 on DK, $7,500 on FD) – On the other sideline, Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy hasn’t said who will start for his team, and it’s possible both Spencer Sanders and Dru Brown will split playing time. So despite the Cowboys being the Vegas favorite to score the most points on the Friday night slate, it’s best to avoid their QBs. So, let’s go for bargain-priced Luton in a game expected to see a lot of points.
Zander Horvath, Purdue ($4,200 on DK, $7,700 on FD) – Horvath seems extremely underpriced given his spot as the No. 1 running back for the Boilermakers in a game in which Vegas expects them to score around 35 points. After Tario Fuller’s jaw injury, Horvath is expected to get the bulk of the team’s carries.
Raheem Blackshear, Rutgers ($6,900 on DK, $8,800 on FD) – The running back on the top of the depth charts on a team expected to score 35 on Friday night against UMass on a team with a weak QB? Yes, please. Texas Tech transfer McLane Carter barely beat out 2018 starter Artur Sitkowski, with four career TDs against 18 interceptions, and who managed to score negative DFS points four times in 2018. Meanwhile, UMass features one of the worst run defenses in the nation. Blackshear is a bargain. Lock him in to all of your lineups.
A bonus: Jonathan Taylor of Wisconsin ($9,400 on DK, $10,400 on FD) is likely to have a field day with the South Florida defense and is probably worth his stratospheric $9,400 salary. I’ll have him slotted at RB or in the flex position in most lineups.
Champ Flemings, Oregon State ($3,000 on DK, $5,700 on FD) – Not initially expected to start, the redshirt sophomore has a basement salary on DK. But an injury to star wide receiver Trevon Bradford has thrust Flemings into a starting role for the Beavers. Although Oklahoma State is a two-touchdown favorite in the game, Oregon State is expected to score about 30 points. Plus, if the team is down then it is more likely to throw the ball.
Tylan Wallace, Oklahoma State ($8,800 on DK, $10,100 on FD) – By saving on Flemings, we can pay up for Wallace, who put up plenty of monster tallies in 2018, averaging over 25 DFS points per game. No matter which Cowboys QB is chucking him the ball, he’s likely going to have a big day.