Fantasy: It is all about value for Week 24

Reid, Mike, and Blayne are joined by Patreon Supporter and former league champion Jessup Gage to break down everything that happened in the first week of the 2018 Fall Fantasy season. They start out with a short recap but quickly get sidelined by a discussion about the red cards in Houston and then jump feet first into the first reactions to the price and budget changes for the Fall season. Things get back on track with after that with the injury review, a team by team breakdown of Round 24, and this the big reveal of HOW WIEBE DID in our league! The discussions make this episode long, but they are definitely worth it!

We’re only one week into the Fall Fantasy Season and it’s picking up right where Spring left off. Highlights from Round 23 include a few clean sheets, shocking comebacks, and multiple red cards. This helped many players see a value increase, but we still have a long way to go before we can field a full team of marquee players. This means that value will once again play a big role in player selection and below are some of my top value players for Round 24.

Double-game Week: None

Teams on a Bye: Atlanta United


Brad Stuver makes a save against the Red Bulls. | USA Today Sports Images

Budget Watch: Finding value among the top keepers will be very hard as they all fall within a similar price range. However, if you’re willing to take a chance on a road team, then consider New York City FC’s Brad Stuver ($4.8) who is filling in for the injured Sean Johnson ($6). His chance for a clean sheet against Toronto FC Sunday (4 pm ET | ESPN, TSN - Full TV & Streaming info) is questionable as he allowed a couple of goals last week, but let’s be honest, this pick is all about moving money into you attack.

Keeperoo Pick: If you’re willing to invest in a potent keeper pairing this week, then start the week with Zack Steffen ($6.0) of Columbus Crew SC on your bench. His game against Houston Saturday (7:30 pm ET | TV & Streaming info) offers a shot at a clean sheet as the Dynamo just went 120 minutes during Wednesday’s U.S. Open Cup semifinal win over LAFC and will be without three starters. If that does not pan out, switch your field keeper for Portland’s Jeff Attinella ($6.5). His match against Vancouver Saturday (11 pm ET | TV & Streaming info) offers another clean sheet opportunity and the Timbers are still undefeated at home.


Julio Cascante wins the ball against Montreal. | USA Today Sports Images

Rock Bottom: If you’re looking for one of the absolute cheapest starting defenders then stick with Real Salt Lake’s Aaron Herrera ($4.5). He’s been in the starting lineup in each of RSL’s last three games and has earned one clean sheet during this time. He’s also an excellent bench autoroo option on Saturday (10 pm ET | TV & streaming info) as Montreal have only scored road goals in two of their last six away games.

Value Building: As I already mentioned, increasing your team value should play a large part when making your player picks this week, but why not also go for big points at the same time with Portland’s Julio Cascante ($6.0). His price increased by $500K last round and his three and five-week average suggests that he’ll see another rise in Round 24. His game against Vancouver also has one of the best clean sheet chances of the week.


Luciano Acosta looks for space against Colorado. | USA Today Sports Images

On Form Value: D.C. United have been one of my favorite sources of value midfielders all season. They have several sub $9m players who frequently put up good numbers and the addition of Wayne Rooney has helped pull pressure away from their playmakers. This week, my favorite option is Luciano Acosta ($8.5). He’s scored one goal in each of his last two games and should have more opportunities for points Saturday (8 pm ET | TV & streaming info) against an Orlando defense that has been horrible on the road.   

Lineup Watch: One of the under-the-radar players to take note of from Round 23 is Sporting Kansas City’s Gianluca Busio ($5m). This was his first start of the 2018 season and he made a big impact by providing the game winning assist in the second half. This result could earn him another start this week when SKC travels to face LAFC Saturday (10:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) and his low price makes him an easy player to add to your bench. Just keep an eye on the starting lineup.


Gyasi Zardes converts a penalty kick vs. Montreal. | USA Today Sports Images

Home Value: Several of the top forwards saw price rises prior to the start of the Fall season, but one who remains very reasonably priced is Columbus’ Gyasi Zardes ($8.5). He’s scored in almost every home game for the Crew this season and has an excellent chance at multiple goals as Houston will be missing two key defensive players due to red cards.

Welcome Back: I know my focus is value this week, but if there is one premium player worth splurging on, it’s LA Galaxy’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic ($11.0). He’s scored a staggering 11 goals over his last nine games and could easily score a brace against Minnesota Saturday (10:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info) as the Loons have been hemorrhaging road goals recently. This potentially makes Zlatan a “must have” for Round 24 and a top captain option.

WHICH PLAYERS are you considering for Round 24?

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