This is the kind of slate in which anything can happen because, while there are five matches, Bournemouth are the biggest favorite. That’s probably never happened this season, at least on a Saturday slate. That means you reasonably can select two players from any of these teams and feel good about it in the EPL $25K Backheel Special [$5K to 1st].
STUDSRaul Jimenez, Wolverhampton vs. Brighton, $8,900 — The biggest positive for Jimenez is he faces Brighton, who have lost their past four matches, most recently giving up a combined seven goals at home against Bournemouth and Cardiff. Jimenez is most likely to benefit with at least 10.8 fantasy points in each of his past five home starts. He’s made the scoresheet in all of those matches but also produced a solid floor with 20 shots and 14 chances created. Other Options — Callum Wilson, Bournemouth, $9,100; Andre Gray, Watford, $8,200; Salomon Rondon, Newcastle, $7,900
VALUESKarlan Grant, Huddersfield vs. Watford, $5,800 — Since all of the usual value plays are priced up on this slate, it’s not easy finding a viable option for cheap. Grant is at home and has shown a solid floor no matter the matchup with at least 4.5 fantasy points in his past four starts. He’s been playing the full 90 and at a minimum should get a couple shots against Watford, who have allowed the seventh-most shots on goal this season.
Other Options — Miguel Almiron, Newcastle, $6,300; Isaac Success, Watford, $5,800; Alireza Jahanbakhsh, Brighton, $5,100
STUDSRyan Fraser, Bournemouth vs. Fulham, $7,900 — James Maddison could be the most popular player, but Fraser is cheaper and has almost the same floor. Throw out matches against top clubs and Fraser almost always has hit at least 10 fantasy points, averaging 6.92 crosses per 90 minutes. He hasn’t had as many corners in recent matches, yet still has held a floor around 10 points. That could push his floor higher against Fulham, who have allowed the most crosses and third-most corners in the league. Other Options — James Maddison, Leicester, $9,300; Matt Ritchie, Newcastle, $8,100; Diogo Jota, Wolverhampton, $8,000
VALUESWill Hughes, Watford at Huddersfield, $4,600 — Hughes is more expensive than usual, but that’s what Huddersfield will do to a player’s price. He also has been surprisingly consistent with at least 5.8 fantasy points in six of his past eight starts and the two down matches came against Arsenal and Liverpool. He has seven shots in the past three matches and could be asked to get forward more because both Troy Deeney and Gerard Deulofeu likely are out.
Other Options — Isaac Hayden, Newcastle, $4,500; Leander Dendoncker, Wolverhampton, $4,300; Ki Sung-yueng, Newcastle, $4,200
STUDSChris Lowe, Huddersfield vs. Watford, $4,500 — There isn’t a true stud defender on the slate, and even if Jose Holebas plays, I’m not sure I’d recommend him. Lowe might not get a clean sheet, but he’s been consistent, averaging 6.38 crosses per 90 minutes. He’s usually good for at least four fantasy points, and the hope is he can get a couple more points at home, which he’s done in recent matches against Leicester and Bournemouth. Other Options — Matt Targett, Southampton, $5,600; Ben Chilwell, Leicester, $5,100; Joe Bryan, Fulham, $4,800
VALUESJan Bednarek, Southampton at Newcastle, $3,100 — If you need a punt, Bednarek is worth the gamble. Throw out matches against Liverpool, Tottenham and Man United and he’s hit five points in his past three starts. Some of that has to do with clean sheets, but he still is getting tackles and interceptions every match, and sometimes that’s enough at this price.
Other Options — DeAndre Yedlin, Newcastle, $3,800; Jon Stankovic, Huddersfield, $3,600; Calum Chambers, Fulham, $3,300
STUDSRui Patricio, Wolverhampton vs. Brighton, $5,500 — Patricio doesn’t have the best odds to win, but he has the best odds to secure a clean sheet. That’s mostly because Brighton are in wretched form, failing to score in their past four matches. It’s been a while since Patricio had a clean sheet, though that has to do with schedule and a random benching because Wolverhampton have allowed just two goals in their past four home matches. Other Options — Artur Boruc, Bournemouth, $5,600; Ben Foster, Watford, $5,400; Martin Dubravka, Newcastle, $4,900
VALUESLukasz Fabianski, West Ham vs. Leicester, $4,400 — I’m not confident in the odds that have West Ham as an underdog because Leicester are coming off a bad home loss against Newcastle. West Ham are in bad form overall, but some of that has to do with schedule, as they’ve won five of their past seven at home. Fabianski is rarely in the negative because he makes at least two saves every match and should get the same opportunities against Leicester, who have the fourth-most shots in the league, but ninth-most goals.
Other Options — Angus Gunn, Southampton, $4,500; Ben Hamer, Huddersfield, $4,200; Sergio Rico, Fulham, $3,900
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