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Week 6 Daily fantasy football picks: Fades and contrarian plays

Oct 7, 2018; Carson, CA, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (17) celebrates after a touchdown in the third quarter against the Oakland Raiders at StubHub Center. The Chargers defeated the Raiders 26-10. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With a focus on our projected ownership percentages for DraftKings (here) and FanDuel (here), today we will be looking at the fantasy football players we should be fading and some we should target instead in DFS tournaments for Week 5.

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.

(Want to see Scott Barrett's favorite DFS tournament plays of the week? Click here.)

Straight fades

If I wanted to take the easy way out, I’d say “Fade Andy JanovichBrandon Marshall, and Tyler Higbee this week.” Instead, here are some players who will draw decent ownership, have a few variables going their way, and who I spent some time researching, but won’t have any exposure to this week.

Philip Rivers, QB, Los Angeles Chargers

Rivers has been impressive thus far, ranking eighth among quarterbacks in total fantasy points, but against soft competition. He hasn’t yet faced a defense ranking top-10 in opposing passer rating yet, but he will this week on the road against the Browns. Cleveland’s defense ranks second-best in opposing passer rating, second-best in fantasy points allowed per dropback, and second-best in schedule-adjusted fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.

Alfred Morris, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Matt Breida didn’t practice Friday, which might put Morris in play if not for the following factors:

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