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Week 4 Daily fantasy football picks: Fades and contrarian plays

Sep 16, 2018; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon (28) celebrates scoring a touchdown during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

As we head into the bulk of the Week 4 fantasy football action, it’s time to take a look at the top fades and contrarian plays for DFS.

This season at PFF, we’re offering projected ownership percentages for Elite subscribers. You can find them for DraftKings here and for FanDuel here. Today, and every Saturday during the season, I’m going to be referencing these ownership percentages to discuss players we should be fading for DFS tournaments.

However, there’s an important caveat here: Sometimes these players will be an outright fade – their ownership is too high to warrant playing them at all. Sometimes these players will only be a partial fade – their ownership is too high to warrant playing them in large-field tournaments (such as DraftKings’ Millionaire Maker or FanDuel Sunday Millions) but they’re still a good enough play on paper that I might not be fading them in smaller-field (or higher stakes) tournaments. I’ll note the differences in the analysis below.

I’ll also offer potential pivot or leverage plays below each strategy-related fade, and, at the end of the article a few lower-owned options I think should be higher-owned than from what we’re expecting.

For a more in-depth explanation on why ownership percentages matter and what a contrarian approach entails, you can read my primer here.

Straight fades

Mitchell Trubisky, QB, Chicago Bears

Trubisky looks to be a decent play on paper, with an inexpensive salary on both sites, and up against a Tampa Bay defense that has surrendered the second-most passing yards (1,126) to opposing quarterbacks this year. Still, Trubisky’s recent and career play push him out of contention. He's our second-worst-graded quarterback this year of 34 qualifying (sandwiched between two non-starters, Tyrod Taylor and Sam Bradford). In 15 career starts, he's reached 16.0 fantasy points only twice.

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