This week a theme has emerged where players who are secondary options on their team and cheaper in salary are in situations where the games will allow them the opportunity to perform on-par or close to it in regards to the primary option at their position.

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“The Other Guys”

Robert Woods will face the Arizona Cardinals in a divisional showdown. Matthew Stafford and Kyler Murray are leading two of the top three scoring offenses in the NFL. Stafford has gone to Cooper Kupp as the primary this year and Van Jefferson, along with DeSean Jackson have eaten into Woods’ production as well. In this game, all hands are on deck against a tough Cardinals’ passing defense. Woods’ $5,300 DK salary is $2,500 less than that of Kupp due to the insane level Kupp’s playing at.

Amari Cooper is in a similar situation to Woods. He’s the talented veteran receiver in a high-power offense that has been passed up as the top target in the offense. Cooper’s $6,000 salary is several hundred less than that of CeeDee Lamb’s at $6,700. Recency bias concerns us with Cooper’s production over the last two weeks, but he’s the same receiver that saw 17 targets to Lamb’s 15 in Week 1. He had 13 receptions for 139 yards and 2 TDs in that game three weeks ago. He and Lamb failed to score a touchdown in their last two games. It was the second straight underwhelming game for Cooper to only one for Lamb. He’ll bounce back against the Carolina Panthers.

Brandon Aiyuk has been revived after seeing his snap counts limited early in the season. He’ll face a Seattle defense this week, that is 26th against the pass, 30th against the run, and dead last in total yards per game while recording 0 interceptions as a unit. The 49ers’ defense is league average to bottom third of the league in most categories. As Jimmy Garoppolo looks to keep up with Russell Wilson, he’ll obviously utilize the red-hot Deebo Samuel but with George Kittle banged up, even if he does play, Aiyuk will be depended on more in the passing game. Aiyuk’s salary of $5,000 is a good bit cheaper than Samuel’s at $6,500.

Robby Anderson hasn’t felt so good since being reunited with his former and now, current quarterback, Sam Darnold. Darnold has been heavily targeting DJ Moore over his former teammate by a number of 31 to 11. Anderson’s 11 targets are tied for fourth on the team with Dan Arnold who is now on the Jacksonville Jaguars. Christian McCaffrey won’t be roaming the Panthers’ backfield in this game and Darnold will need all of his weapons involved. The gap in pricing between Anderson’s $5,100 salary and Moore’s $6,600 is the same as Samuel and Aiyuk’s. Pairing Aiyuk and Anderson’s salary together instead of Moore and Samuel would save you $3,000 on DK.

Cameron Brate may be Tom Brady’s number one tight end option in his return to face the New England Patriots as Rob Gronkowski is listed as doubtful to play in the showdown. Brady has plenty of weapons, even if Gronkowski is out, but he’s coming to town with vengeance on his mind. Brate has shown many times over to be capable in the lead spot. He’s not Gronkowski but he can handle the volume the position has seen this year with Gronkowski hauling in four receiving touchdowns in three games as seen by Brate catching 4-of-5 targets in his last game for 35 yards.