2014 Fantasy Football: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

If you are entering a tournament on FanDuel this Sunday, you have most likely eyed up at least one player from the Pittsburgh Steelers for your roster.

In the past two games, the Jacksonville Jaguars‘ defense has allowed an average of 29.69 points to the quarterback position in FanDuel leagues, and the Jaguars’ defense is currently allowing an average of 320.8 passing yards per game. Ben Roethlisberger has a very attractive price tag of $8,300, and all signs point to Big Ben having a huge day.

Wide receiver Antonio Brown($9,000) finished the 2013 season with eight touchdowns, and he already has five in 2014. He is clearly Roethlisberger’s favorite target, and against such a weak defense, Brown could add a few more touchdowns onto his current total.

The Jaguars have allowed a league-high 11 passing touchdowns this season, so wider receiver Markus Wheaton($5,300) and tight end Heath Miller($5,900) are sneaky options the average daily fantasy player may overlook.

If things get out of hand early, and that is a distinct possibility, then Le’Veon Bell($8,600) will find himself with a heavy workload against a defense that is ranked 25th against the rush. Bell is able to provided his owners with versatility because of his capability as a dual-threat back, but LeGarrette Blount($4,600) is a very intriguing option for such a cheap price tag. Against the 27th ranked rush defense of the Carolina Panthers, Blount was able to accumulate 118 rushing yards and score a rushing touchdown. Most daily players will find a way to work Bell into their lineups, but few will make the contrarian play in selecting Blount, That could be the difference between winning a big pay day, or just winning your $10 back.

Statistically speaking, this is one of the best matchups daily fantasy players could hope for in Week 5. Roethlisberger has a fairly cheap price tag compared to Andrew Luck($10,000) and Philip Rivers($8,900), and you could make an obvious stack of Roethlisberger/Brown which should provide an easy reward, or go outside of the box and have a Roethlisberger/Wheaton or a Roethlisberger/Miller stack.

If something seems too good to be true, however, sometimes it is.

If a Kate Upton clone gave me a key to her hotel room, I would not hesitate to pay her a visit. When I would wake up the next morning in a bathtub full of ice with my kidney missing, however, I would have learned the hard way I was suckered into a bad situation because of a pretty face.

This matchup seems very pretty on paper, but I want to metaphorically protect fans from having their kidneys removed for their daily fantasy lineups.

The Steelers’ have only averaged 24.25 points per game this season, and that was against some very weak defenses. Even if Pittsburgh does manage to put points on the board, rookie quarterback Blake Bortles($6,400) is bound to breakout at some point during this season with all the weapons he is surrounded with. Bortles will have less targets in Week 5 with Cecil Shorts and Marqise Lee most likely sidelined, but he still has Allen Robinson($5,000), Allen Hurns($5,300) and Clay Harbor($5,000) to help him move the ball. The Steelers’ defense is mediocre against the pass, and with several injuries to account for, the Jaguars’ offense could find a way to exploit Dick LeBeau‘s schemes.

Also, this game will be played in Jacksonville.

I’m personally rolling with several combinations of Steelers’ players in my lineups, but am I taking this matchup too lightly? Am I being ignorant in overlooking everything I stated above?

I needed to get a few other opinions on this, so I asked some of my favorite analysts if they thought this game was a trap.

Jon Kelly, owner of FantasyFBCrew.com

I am not going to come out and tell you not to play any Pittsburgh players this week. That would be foolish on any week with the way that Antonio Brown & LeVeon Bell have been producing. With that being said, this game does have symptoms of what could potentially be a trap game, specifically if you plan on plugging in the Pittsburgh D/ST in every lineup.
Aside from the Pittsburgh defense facing what appears to be vanilla pudding in Week 5, this defensive unit just really isn’t good at forcing turnovers. Through the first 4 weeks of the season, the Pittsburgh D/ST ranks outside of the top 20 in fantasy D/ST scoring. The Steelers got its first interception of the season against the Bucs last week, in a game where the defense let Mike Glennon pass for 300 yards and two touchdowns. Call me crazy, but I actually believe that Bortles and the Jags put up some points and make this a game against Pittsburgh.
As for Roethlisberger, Bell, and Brown, I still believe they will be serviceable options in DFS. However, there are plenty of other options that will not be close to 100% ownership as they surely will. Let us not forget the infamous week 2 stack of Jake Locker and Justin Hunter that just about everybody in the world was playing, and look at how that turned out. If there is anything I know about fantasy football, there is no such thing as a sure thing.
This week, the Pittsburgh Steelers get to enter Jacksonville. I say get to, because the upcoming likely Jacksonville Jaguars’ home loss, is every daily fantasy football owners win!

The top player in this week’s match-up is likely Antonio Brown. Last week, against the leagues worst defense versus the pass in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Brown nabbed 131 yards on seven receptions with two touchdowns. And the Jaguars? The Jaguars are the league’s second-worst. I wouldn’t expect the 130+ yards and multiple touchdowns again from Brown, but I would expect another 100+ yard, one touchdown minimum game.

I also like Le’Veon Bell, who is arguably the second-best running back from the line of scrimmage behind only DeMarco Murray of the Cowboys, getting the chance to play against the Jaguars’ 25th rushing defense. The inside linebackers will have a tough day, as even in relief, and LeGarrette Blount might get his appetite filled a bit in the Jags’ second level.

Another solid play will be the Steelers’ DEF. Don’t believe too much of the hype just yet in Blake Bortles. This will continue to be a learning experience for the rookie QB, and the Steelers might rely on a constant blitz to keep pressure on the young offense.

Even with solid play from Brown, growing numbers from Heath Miller and some other targets at wideout in the Pittsburgh offense, Big Ben might not be the biggest, baddest play. However, with that said, Ben should break the top 6 in Week 5 points. If the price is right, he’ll get better than average points, but there are also some better, more cost-effective picks as well.

Eric Streller, owner of FantasyLoot.com

Everyone is riding the Jacksonville Jaguars fade train this year, and that includes me.This week, however, presents a very interesting matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Everyone is assuming the Steelers will win big, with good reason: Jacksonville is pretty bad. There are 3 teams that give up more than 400 yards per game, and Jacksonville is one of them. On the flip side, there are only five teams that average more than 400 yards per game and the Steelers fall in that category. All signs point to the Steelers putting up a lot of yards and winning big.

The Steelers, however, are only a six-point favorite to win, and the game is in Jacksonville. The Jags are 7-4 in the last 11 games in Jacksonville against the Steelers, and the Steelers have only won six out of its last 15 games against teams with a losing record. Neither of those stats scream to pick Pittsburgh.

Ultimately, for Jacksonville to have a chance, it is going to have to score a lot of points. I think that the Steelers have too much firepower on offense for the Jags to keep up. With that said, I am still not picking Pittsburgh in my eliminator group this week, despite them being the consensus top pick.

Payton Garrett, writer for YourFantasyFootballCoach.com

I expect a conservative game from the Pittsburgh Steelers who would suffer greatly from a loss to the 0-4 Jacksonville Jaguars.

The second half break down against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers has fans and some analyst skeptical about the play-making ability of the Steelers, so it makes sense to go with a conservative approach. The main beneficiaries from a conservative offense? LeVeon Bell and Shaun Suisham. Expect a lot of running and short passes. The goal is easy points, and that translates to field goals.

Jacksonville and rookie quarterback Blake Bortles will have to impress with their offense to shake the Steelers’ conservatism. Unfortunately,  I don’t expect this to happen as the Steeler defense has proven adept at handling rookie quarterbacks. Expect a low scoring game, and a Steelers’ win.

So there you have it. While most seem to agree this game is not as safe as some may think, it still looks like rolling with a Steeler in your daily lineup is the right move.

Could this game be a trap? Yes. Is it too good of a matchup to pass on Steelers’ players? Yes.

Whether you want to roll with as close to a sure thing as possible in Antonio Brown, or take a leap with LeGarrette Blount, you won’t find too many writers telling you to sit a Steelers’ player this week.

Categories: Daily Fantasy Football, Fantasy Football

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