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Week 5 Eagles DFS Play – LaGarrette Blount

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Once upon the time (two weeks ago), the Eagles run game was the focus of several rants lamenting its effectiveness and Head Coach Doug Pederson’s lack of commitment. In the past two weeks, the tables have turned,  turning RB LeGarrette Blount into a sneaky and cost-effective DFS play against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 5.

This may seem foolhardy to some. The Cardinals allow running backs an average stat line of 69 yards on 23 rushes for a 3.0 average and have given up only 2 touchdowns in 2017.  They have yet to give up 100 total rushing yards in a game.

A big reason for the Cardinals success against the run is DT Corey Peters. Peters has a run stop on 11.8% of his snaps, tied for 6th in the league with Browns DT Danny Shelton. DE Chandler Jones is the Cardinals highest rated player on the team, barely edging out Peters by a point, with a 83.3 grade.

However, there are weak points that the Eagles can exploit. Rookie EDGE Haason Reddick is undersized and should pose no issue for Eagles RT Lane Johnson or TE Zach Ertz on run plays. Cardinals defensive ends Frostee Rucker and Josh Mauro have struggled and linebackers Karlos Dansby and Deone Bucannon have yet to make a significant impact in 2017.

Per PFF and counter to current public opinion, the Eagles match up well against the Cardinals in the trenches, where they rank 5th best in run advantage for Week 5. The Eagles presumed starters along the offensive line own positive grades per PFF and have found their stride after gashing the Giants and Chargers for a combined 407 ground yards.

After a slow start that included a 1 touch game against the Kansas City Chiefs, Blount rebounded and has become an integral part of the offense. In Week 4 against the Chargers, he went off for 136 yards on 16 carries and finished the game in his trademark physical fashion. Blount may be seen as a touchdown-dependent fantasy play, but it’s worth nothing that while he only has 1 rushing TD this year, he still has 6 touchdowns in his last 9 games.

RB Wendell Smallwood did not participate in practice all week with a knee injury and is listed as questionable for Sunday. Even if Smallwood does play (UPDATE: he will not), expect an uptick in snaps for both Blount and RB Corey Clement, with Blount receiving the lion’s share of the snaps.

LaGarrette Blount is a steal at $5,900 on FanDuel and $4,200 on DraftKings and will have extremely low ownership due to his moderate usage to date and the Cardinals 10th ranked run defense.

Michael is an NFL Draft enthusiast, aspiring scout, and grandson of longtime East Stroudsburg (Pa.) HS football coach John P. Kist. He hosts Locked On Eagles and writes for Inside the Pylon & Breaking Football.

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