We are at the half-way mark of the XFL season as we approach Week 5 which means only 6 more chances to win some cash during the regular season for DFS! Be sure to bookmark the XFL News Hub Fantasy page for the best DFS coverage of Fanduel and DraftKings contest.
Below, I will breakdown the top plays for each position for Week 5 of the XFL based on the contests available for DraftKings. Each position will have one or more options based on pricing tiers. Follow me at @AlexMcKinnonXFL for up to the minute DFS news and late-breaking plays as we approach Saturday and Sunday. Here
High Priced: Josh Johnson ($10,500)
LA Wildcats Josh Johnson ($10,500) along with PJ Walker and Jordan Ta’amu have been the most consistent trio from a fantasy perspective throughout this season. Despite losing his #1 receiver, Johnson has been able to turn his secondary and tertiary receivers into dangerous weapons (McBride, Smallwood & others). After missing Week 1, Johnson has had 18 or more DK points each week including back to back 25+ point weeks and will face a Vipers defense that gave up 41.6 DK points to PJ Walker in Week 3. The $1500 discount tips the scales for me when choosing Johnson over Walker in Week 5.
Mid Priced: Taylor Cornelius ($8500)
Since taking over for the struggling Aaron Murray, Cornelius ($8500) has been a pleasant surprise for the Tampa Bay Vipers. He kept the Vipers competitive in their Week 3 match up vs. PJ Walker and the Houston Roughnecks and was a big part of the 25-0 route vs. the DC Defenders last week. Cornelius has averaged 21.5 DK points in the last two games including 1 passing TD and 1 rushing TD in each of those games. The Wildcats defense has been picking up steam but you should still be able to find value with Cornelius at only $8500.
Low Priced: Philip Nelson ($7500)
Replacing the injured Landry Jones heading into Week 5, Philip Nelson ($7500) is a clear value/pivot play for DFS’ers this weekend. While many are enamored by the potential of BJ Daniels ($7200), I am much more interested in Nelson and his fleet of weapons. Tight End Donald Parham has been among the most consistent targets this season in a wide receiver corps that also includes Jeff Badet, Flynn Nagel and Jazz Ferguson. Nelson is a prototypical dink and dunk quarterback but with Lance Dunbar coming out of the backfield, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I will have plenty of Nelson-Parham-Dunbar stacks this weekend.
High Priced: Lance Dunbar ($7600)
Following up my notes for Philip Nelson, I love Dunbar ($7600) this week as a safety net for Nelson coming out of the backfield. The two-headed monster of Dunbar and Cameron Artis-Payne have both been able to eat in the last three weeks (both have eclipsed at least 10 DK points in the last three games). Facing a Guardians defense that has allowed a lot of offensive production over the past three weeks, I think both Dunbar and Artis-Payne could see success is Week 5. Take the chance with Dunbar.
Mid Priced: James Butler ($6700)
Butler ($6700) has yet to see a ton of usage thru four weeks but has been pretty efficient with his opportunities. On 34 rushes, Butler has 169 yards and 3 TDs including a season-high 11 rushes last week. He is due for an explosive performance and I think this is a great spot to pivot to or stack with Butler against the Dragons in Houston. With other popular options in his price range (Farrow, Patrick, Pumphrey, Victor), Butler’s ownership should be very low.
Low Priced: Martez Carter ($4600), DuJuan Harris ($3600)
Returning from his Week 4 injury, Martez Carter ($4600) is expected to return to action in Week 5 against the Vipers. Carter had an incredible Week 3 performance, hitting 30.5 DK points (11 rushes, 34 yards, 2 TDs, 3 rec., 41 yards, 1 TD). At $4600, there is a lot of upside to Carter even if he has 50% of the performance he had in Week 3. I expect the Wildcats to roll, so there could be plenty of opportunities for Carter late.
Carter’s teammate, DuJuan Harris ($3600), took advantage of his limited playing time in Week 4 while Carter was out. Although I don’t suggest playing both Carter and Harris, I think either one would be a great low-cost option to toss into your lineups as you try to fit in some of the other expensive options on the slate.
High Priced: Tre McBride ($9700), Donald Parham ($9500)
Talk about taking advantage of your opportunity…Wildcats WR Tre McBride slotted into the #1 receiver role after Nelson Spruce went down with an injury and hasn’t looked back. In Week 3, McBride had 5 catches, 109 yards and 2 TDs followed by a 8 catch, 127 yard, 1 TD performance in Week 4. More importantly, McBride still hasn’t been priced in the Spruce-Phillips range and is below $10K again this week. Take advantage of this situation until Spruce returns to action.
I will continue to use Donald Parham until 1) he is at an outrageous price or 2) he has a multi-game skid. Parham is a PROBLEM for opposing defense at 6’8″, 237 lbs. With Landry Jones going down with an injury and backup QB Philip Nelson stepping in for Week 5, Parham may see a dip in ownership based on the uncertainty which is a perfect spot to take advantage.
Mid-High Priced: Eli Rogers ($8200), Austin Proehl ($8000)
Despite a lack of production, Eli Rogers ($8200) has received the 2nd highest target share % among eligible receivers. Rogers has only caught 62% of the balls he’s seen but Jones and the Defenders keep going back to him. The former Steeler is in a prime spot on Sunday as the Defenders look to turn things around in front of their home fans. I love both Rogers and Proehl in this price range if you are looking to go down a $ tier at WR.
Similar to Eli Rogers, Austin Proehl ($8000) is near the top when it comes to target share at 22.6% for WRs. Also similar to Rogers, Proehl has struggled with his catch rate catching only 50% of his 26 targets. Proehl has shown his potential (26.1 DK points in Week 1 and 20.1 in Week 3). Against the Roughnecks, the Dragons will be forced to throw a TON and should be including Proehl in a prominent role.
Mid Priced: Jordan Smallwood ($6200), Jalen Tolliver ($5700)
Despite proving himself as the clear #2 receiver in the absence of Nelson Spruce (7 targets, 5 receptions, 75 yards) in Week 4, Smallwood ($6200) did not see an increase in pricing. In fact, he went down $500. I would expect his ownership to be modest or maybe a little higher than we would hope but I see no reason to go away from this Wildcats offense while everyone’s price is reasonable.
Jalen Tolliver ($5700) is another receiver above the 20% target share threshold (21.01%) but is among the lowest priced receiver in that field. His price dipped $300 after an 8.4 DK point performance in Week 4 during the Vipers 25-0 blowout vs. the Defenders where the running game dominated (45 carries between Patrick and Smith). In Week 3, Tolliver saw 13 targets and caught 8 for 104 yards during the Houston/Tampa Bay shootout (34-27 HOU). With the Wildcats offense clicking, Taylor Cornelius and the Vipers will be throwing a lot more this week which should include a lot of Tolliver.
Low Priced: Deandre Thompkins ($4900), DeAndre Goolsby ($3500)
Deandre Thompkins ($4900) has been a bust the last two weeks along with the rest of the Defenders, combining for 2.8 DK points in the last two games. In Week 2, Thompkins saw 9 targets and caught 6 balls for 92 yards and 1 TD and has shown flashes of brilliance. This is a huge week for the Defenders as they look to turn things around against St. Louis at home and I think it’s worth taking a risk on Thompkins at bottom dollar.
DeAndre Goolsby ($3500) was a pleasant surprise last week catching all 3 of his targets for 41 yards and a TD (13.1 DK points) at only $3200. Similar to Jalen Tolliver, I think Goolsby will need to be a productive third option for Cornelius to combat the offensive production of the Wildcats and is a nice dart throw while saving you some cap space in your lineups.
High Priced: BattleHawks ($4700)
The BattleHawks have been rolling as they come off of back-to-back victories against the Guardians (29-9) and the Seattle Dragons (23-16) and head to DC to face the struggling Defenders offense. I would lean towards one of the cheaper options this week, but if you have the remaining cap space, now is the perfect time to take advantage of Cardale Jones and his interception troubles.
Mid Priced: Wildcats ($3900)
Probably my favorite option at DST this week, the Wildcats have proven their worth in similar match ups this season (17 DK points vs. DC and 8 DK points vs. DAL) as they take on the Tampa Bay Vipers at home in Week 5. At $3900, Los Angeles provides a nice value being the 4th highest priced defense on the slate. The extra $1,000 between top priced Houston and the Wildcats defense could serve as a great opportunity to go up a tier at WR or RB.
Low Priced: Guardians ($3200)
After a tumultuous couple of weeks for the Guardians where they got destroyed by DC in Week 2 (27-0) and St. Louis in Week 3 (29-9), they had a nice bounce back game at home vs. LA where they won 17-14 putting up 8 DK points as a defense. The Guardians defense has shown their potential (24 DK points in Week 1 vs. TB) and face a Dallas team with a new QB (Philip Nelson). New York is definitely the best value at DST but be wary of the ownership that my follow.
Be sure to read our Week 5 DraftKings Expert Survey as well as our other DFS breakdowns. Follow me at @AlexMcKinnonXFL for more!
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