Not all Pauper cards are Modern legal, so you probably can't play most popular Pauper decks at a Modern FNM. The main criteria for Pauper is essentially that the cards are printed at common rarity, so many of the best cards predate Modern by many years.
That said, you can definitely do okay at an FNM with a Modern-legal budget deck, depending on how competitive you local FNM is. Some people will tell you otherwise, but I think there's always an advantage to having something totally rogue and unexpected. And you can certainly play and have fun with a cheap deck in any case.
March 17, 2017 8:04 p.m.
No, but you can make something on budget (meaning around 150 max) while still being ok provided that you're a good player. You'll go about 50/50 at most shops.