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CFL DFS Week Nine: Going HAM-ilton on CFL DFS
Chris Kay
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CFL DFS Week Nine: Going HAM-ilton on CFL DFS

Week nine of CFL DFS is here and things are getting much tighter over at DraftKings. Not only is the competition getting stiffer, but so is the pricing. No longer are there multiple great options at near punt prices. There is no better week to take a look at DailyRoto’s CFL content! Let’s show you what I mean…

Vegas Totals

HAM – 31.5
BC – 30
OTT – 29
EDM – 27
CGY – 26.5
TOR – 24.5
SSK – 21.5
MTL – 20

Quarterbacks

1. Zach Collaros, HAM
2. Logan Kilgore, TOR
3. Mike Reilly, EDM
4. Bo Levi Mitchell, CGY

Zach Collaros made his much anticipated return last week against BC and really outdid himself, throwing for 331 yards and two touchdowns on 40 passes. The pass heavy Hamilton offense was clicking with Collaros under center. This week they have the highest implied total (31.5), as they face off against Saskatchewan at home. Collaros is the clear number one quarterback for me against the Rough Riders, the worst pass defense in the CFL.

This selection comes with risk, but Logan Kilgore could be just the guy you need to take down a tournament this week. His minimal price ($6,600) allows for plenty of roster flexibility and he faces off against an Edmonton defense that has caused just three turnovers over their last four games. Toronto’s offense is only getting healthier, and Kilgore is the main beneficiary, for now.

There are many reasons to love Mike Reilly every week (42 passing attempts and 354 yards per game), but his inability to find the end zone in recent weeks has left us with unflattering performances. He’s routinely the highest priced quarterback on the board, yet has generated just 24.4, 11.9 and 21.24 Fantasy points over the last three weeks. I’ll take the chance on him this week against Toronto’s bottom three defense against the pass, but will likely limit his usage to strictly tournaments.

Bo Levi Mitchell is an interesting option this week, coming off two lackluster performances against Saskatchewan. One thing that looks to be a positive heading into this week’s matchup against BC is the high scoring nature of the game (game total of 56.5) and better competition throughout the entire game. What I mean by this is Mitchell will be forced to focus on every throw, knowing that BC is a very formidable opponent, something Saskatchewan can’t boast.

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Running Backs

1. Jerome Messam, CGY
2. Jeremiah Johnson, BC
3. Brandon Rutley, MTL
4. Nic Grigsby, OTT
5. Roy Finch, CGY

Jerome Messam consistently produces for us in DFS, and it’s all because of his usage and productivity in the passing game. Over his last five games, he has averaged just 10 carries per game, but has supplemented those touches with 4.5 catches per game. With those 14.5 touches per game, he has averaged 18.36 Fantasy points during that stretch. Even with a tougher matchup against BC, I’m not worried about him getting the requisite volume to produce.

Jeremiah Johnson has come off injury with a bang, scoring three touchdowns in two games. He has averaged 16 touches per game, but 15 of those have been on the ground. Calgary is an average defense against the run, but it’ll all come down to Johnson’s touches around the goal line. BC’s implied total of 30 has me thinking he’ll have plenty of opportunities to find the end zone at least once.

This is where it gets ugly for me and the running back position. Brandon Rutley and Nic Grigsby are two guys worthy of usage, but mainly in tournaments as Rutley’s matchup is very difficult and his offense is dreadful (lowest implied total in the slate) and Grigsby has been as effective as a minimum priced returner over his last two games. With Henry Burris at quarterback, Grigsby is only averaging 11 touches per game. In the three weeks before that, he averaged just over 13 touches per game. This slight decline and the less potent Ottawa offense has really cheapened his stock. Consider both Rutley and Grigsby in tournaments only. UPDATE: Kienan LaFrance will be staring for Nic Grigsby as Grigsby has been released from the Redblacks.

Roy Finch is a returner worthy of consideration because of how tough it is to find the right running back. If you’re not willing to pay up for Messam then there is reason to want to go all the way down to a 3k option like Finch. Over the last three games, he has generated 7.7, 8.85 and 10.15 Fantasy points, with about 97% of those points coming directly from return yardage.

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Wide Receiver (High-priced)

1. Luke Tasker, HAM
2. Derel Walker, EDM
3. Adarius Bowman, EDM
4. Diontae Spencer, TOR
5. Emanuel Arceneaux, BC
6. Marquay McDonald, CGY
7. Ernest Jackson, OTT

The number one receiver from the number one offense makes for a clear number one target here. Luke Tasker fits the mold as safe receiver for Collaros and the Tiger-Cats offense. He has just one 100-yard game this season, but he has averaged just over 6.5 receptions per game. His upside is limited because of that, but he’s a safe option especially with Collaros at quarterback. In Collaros’ return, Tasker caught eight passes for 86 yards and one touchdown.

Adarius Bowman and Derel Walker will always be towards the top of the list because if you can afford them they’ll produce for you. Their play will be directly tied to how Mike Reilly plays, so either option is a great one to pair up with the Eskimos quarterback. Walker has had more upside lately, but does have one dud in Week 7. Bowman hasn’t had the upside that Walker has had, but his dud came in Week 6. These two are the leading receivers for targets with both having 77 through seven games.

Diontae Spencer came back from injury hotter than anyone had seen before, recording a stat line of 11/146/1 with Kilgore as his quarterback. His matchup against Edmonton is as good as it gets and, as long as Tori Gurley and Vidal Hazelton are out, you’re looking at the clear number one target for the Argonauts. He saw 18 targets last week with those two out!

Marquay McDonald and Emanuel Arceneaux are very interchangeable receivers in this week’s rankings. They both have averaged just over 17 Fantasy points per game on the season, but Arcneaux has been even more productive over his last few games. Arceneaux has averaged 21.3 Fantasy points per game over his last four, while McDonald’s average sits at 17.3 during that same amount of time. With both teams having high implied totals, I’ll favor Arceneaux because of his slight upgrade in targets and reliance around the end zone over the last two weeks (three touchdowns).

Henry Burris isn’t my favorite quarterback these days, but he has looked Ernest Jackson’s way enough to consider him this week. In the two games Burris has started since returning from injury, he has thrown a touchdown to Jackson in each of them. This looks like a high-upside play to me as Burris has historically loved to throw him the ball and an uptick in targets/receptions to go along with a touchdown would mean a huge game from a mid-6k receiver.

Wide Receiver (Value)

1. Kendial Lawrence, SSK
2. B.J. Cunningham, MTL
3. Tiquan Underwood, HAM

I’ve never been a huge fan of Kendial Lawrence, but as long as he’s starting at running back and receiving touches via punt/kick returns he’ll be a guy I consider each week. He saw just seven touches against Calgary two weeks ago, but still managed 9.5 Fantasy points. The next week in that same matchup we saw his touches increase to 11 and his Fantasy point total rise to 12.35. I think we can expect more of the same against Hamilton at a very low risk cost of $4,300.

B.J. Cunningham has been surprisingly good even though the Alouettes have been terrible the last few weeks. The former Michigan State product has caught four passes or more in four of his last five games, adding two touchdowns during that stretch. Ottawa’s defense is solid, but Cunningham is a top target for Montreal offensively due to all of the injuries to their skill positions.

Terrence Toliver really isn’t a value option, but at $6,400 he has lots of upside at a cost much less than the stars of the slate. He has touchdowns in two of his last three games (Collaros threw a touchdown to him last week) and in the game he didn’t catch a touchdown he caught seven passes for 120 yards. Considering his great speed and his good amount of targets since the return from injury, Toliver makes for an elite tournament option in this slate.

Defense

1. Hamilton
2. Montreal

Hamilton has the juicy matchup of Saskatchewan at home this week. The Rough Riders have a rough offensive line and it’s this kind of defense that can not only create pressure and sacks, but also force Darian Durant to turn the ball over. They also have one of the two best return men in the CFL.

Montreal’s defense might be the safest of the lower priced in this slate, considering Ottawa’s Henry Burris is a turnover machine that loves to try to make big plays. The Alouettes are averaging almost two turnovers per game and have generated 10 over their last four games.

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