DraftKings CFL: Week 18 Value Plays
DraftKings CFL: Week 18 Value Plays

This article is part of our DraftKings CFL series.

Quarterback

Jeremiah Masoli, HAM at TOR ($11,300): Masoli is rightfully priced as the top quarterback on the slate, even factoring in he's coming off two straight games with just average production. His Week 16 tally of a modest 189 yards was offset by three touchdown passes, and the low yardage total was simply a product of the Ti-Cats jumping out to a big lead versus the Lions. However, the prolific veteran had rattled off five 300-yard efforts in five of the six games prior to that pair of contests, including a 385-yard tally against this same Argos squad. Masoli projects as an excellent play in the rematch, considering Toronto continues to yield the second-most passing yards per game (294.6), second-highest completion percentage (68.7), highest average yards per pass (9.6), most completions of over 30 yards (31) and the highest quarterback (94.8) and passer efficiency(110.6) ratings. In turn, Masoli has the highest average yards per pass (9.3) in the league, along with the most 300-yard games (10). Given the matchup and his impressive array of weapons, Masoli shapes up as a clear-cut top play.

Trevor Harris, OTT at EDM ($10,700): Harris continued rolling along in Week 17, racking up 33.46 fantasy points against the Blue Bombers on the strength of a 349-yard, three-touchdown performance. The veteran had also eclipsed 20 fantasy points in four of the prior six games, and he posted a solid 19.32 fantasy points against this same Eskimos squad in Week 15 courtesy of a 313-yard passing performance. The Eskimos come in allowing a robust 272.6 passing yards per contest, the second-highest average yards per pass (8.7) and the second-most completions of over 30 yards (29). Meanwhile, Harris has 19 completions that eclipse that distance, and a trio of dangerous wideouts in Diontae Spencer, Brad Sinopoli and Greg Ellingson to capitalize on that weakness.

Matt Nichols, WPG vs. SSK ($9,300): Nichols turned in a solid performance in a crucial win over the Redblacks in Week 17, racking up 25.3 fantasy points on the strength of a 265-yard, three-touchdown effort. He draws a matchup in Week 18 against a Roughriders secondary that's been susceptible to the big play through the air, yielding 26 completions of over 30 yards. Nichols has 12 such connections this season, while the Riders defense has also allowed 20 touchdown passes, the third-highest figure in the CFL. While yardage expectations should be tempered, Nichols' price is right for another contest that's pivotal to Winnipeg's playoff hopes.

Running Back

William Powell, OTT at EDM ($8,500): Powell lived up to top billing again in Week 17, tallying 20.1 fantasy points against the Blue Bombers. He's scored between 20.1 and 34.5 fantasy points in five of the last six contests, including a 22.2 fantasy-point haul on the strength of a 147-yard effort versus this same Eskimos team in Week 15. Edmonton comes in allowing 106.3 rushing yards per game, along with the most rushing touchdowns (18) in the CFL. Moreover, they've surrendered 11 runs of over 20 yards, while Powell has posted eight such gains this season.

Don Jackson, CGY vs. BC ($6,600): Jackson is a quintessential mid-tier play, a capable back involved through both the ground and air that has an unquestioned hold on the top job. He's put up a trio of 100-yard performances over nine contests this season, and he's logged double-digit carries in all but two games. He's also posted six consecutive multi-reception efforts, locking in a solid floor. Meanwhile, the Lions have been increasingly vulnerable to the running game as the season has unfolded, as they're now allowing the second-highest rushing yards per game (115.0), third-highest average yards per rush (5.4), third-most rushing touchdowns (14) and second-most rushes of over 20 yards (12).

Brandon Burks, TOR vs. HAM ($5,300): Fellow running backs James Wilder and Dexter McCluster are out this week, so Burks jumps to the forefront as a value play. Burks was impressive against the Lions last week, turning just eight carries into 92 yards and adding three grabs as well. A matchup against a Tiger-Cats defense that's allowed 110.9 rushing yards per game, the highest average yards per rush (5.8) and a CFL-high 13 rushes of more than 20 yards bodes well for Burks' chances of offering an impressive return on his very modest price, especially if he handles lead-back duties.

Tyrell Sutton, BC at CGY ($5,000): Sutton has been named the starter for Saturday's game against the Stampeders, putting him in play at his bargain price despite the tough matchup. The Stamps continue to be extremely stingy against the run, but Sutton is capable of contributing through the air as well. Calgary has allowed the third-most completions (319) in the league, and Sutton notably posted a season-high six catches against them in Week 5 while he was still with the Alouettes. He also averaged a solid 4.4 yards on his 10 carries in that contest, leading to 15.6 fantasy points. A similar return would represent 3x value for the veteran, opening up plenty of salary elsewhere in your lineup in the process.

Wide Receiver/Slotback

Brandon Banks, HAM at TOR ($9,700): The weakness of the Argonauts defense is certainly the secondary, as already highlighted in Masoli's entry earlier. Banks helped prove as much when he lit up this same Toronto squad for consecutive 135-yard efforts in Weeks 12 and 13. He'll be in a good position to do the same in Week 18, considering their penchant for allowing chunk plays through the air and Banks' 14 catches of more than 20 yards this season. While D'haquille Williams ($9,300) is also appealing, Banks is worth the extra few hundred if you have them.

Brad Sinopoli, OTT at EDM ($9,200): You could also certainly consider Sinopoli's teammate Diontae Spencer ($9,100) in this spot given his typically safe floor, but he's a bit overpriced after a couple of good-but-not-great games. Meanwhile, Sinopoli continues to shine in what has turned into a career season, with the most recent example being the 16 receptions for 201 yards he's amassed over the last two games. That's led to fantasy-point totals of 20.3 and 19.8, with the former having come against this same Eskimos team. In what should be another back-and-forth affair between two prolific passing games, Sinopoli should be in for plenty of work.

Bryant Mitchell, EDM vs. OTT ($6,600): Mitchell's price continues to mostly hold steady, making him a cost-effective way to gain exposure to the Eskimos passing game each week. Granted, that Edmonton air attack has been considerably underperforming over the last pair of games, but a critical late-season matchup against a Redblacks squad that's allowed the third-most passing touchdowns (22) should help bump up their production. It's also worth noting Mitchell has been steady for multiple games, posting between 69 and 128 receiving yards over his last five contests while only tallying less than six grabs once during that span. If you're on the hunt for a solid floor at a cost-effective price, Mitchell is one of the best candidates in that regard this week.

Juwan Brescacin, CGY vs. BC ($6,300): And Brescacin is right behind him. The Stamps receiver is stepping up in the wake of key injuries to teammates, and he's coming off a six-catch, 78-yard performance versus the Alouettes in Week 17 that yielded a solid 13.8 fantasy points. That was preceded by a pair of five-reception tallies that featured 109 and 64 yards, respectively, in Weeks 14 and 16. With Brescacin likely Bo Levi Mitchell's second-most dangerous target at present behind the speedy Eric Rogers, he's priced right for a matchup against a Lions squad that's allowed 20 touchdowns, 7.9 yards per pass and 21 completions of greater than 30 yards. The latter figure is especially intriguing when considering Brescacin, as seven of his 32 receptions have gone for that distance, and he's brought in six of the 13 targets of over 20 yards that he's seen.

Team Defense

Calgary Stampeders vs. BC Lions ($5,300): The Stampeders essentially have the run of the CFL defensive leaderboard, as they have top billing in almost every major category. They're not too far down the list in the few that they're not ranked first in, either. For example, Calgary has the third-most interceptions (16), third-most points off turnovers (116) and second-most two-and-outs forced (86). The Lions should have Travis Lulay back under center this week, but they face a steep climb for offensive success against Calgary's imposing unit, one that's allowed a stingy 246.4 passing yards and 75.3 rushing yards per contest at home this season.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Juan Carlos Blanco plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: jcblanco22, FanDuel: jc_blanco22, DraftPot: jc_blanco22, FantasyDraft: jc_blanco22, OwnThePlay: jcblanco22.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Juan Carlos Blanco
Winner of the FSWA 2016 Newcomer of the Year Award, Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports for close to 20 years and covers NBA, MLB, and the NFL for Rotowire.com, including serving as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' beat writer. He has previously written for KFFL.com and remains an avid season-long and daily fantasy player in multiple sports.
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