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DK Buffet Week 14: Key Stats and Matchups for the Main Slate

When I’m looking into the DFS slate each week, I like to go game by game and identify players or situations that intrigue me. In every game, on every team, there’s a situation that’s relevant for DFS purposes, either positive or negative reason. It informs us of how we should be attacking each slate.

Arizona Cardinals

Implied Total: 19

Spread: +2.5 vs. Detroit

The red-hot, coach-killing Cardinals are slight home underdogs to Detroit this weekend. David Johnson ($6,500) is coming off of a game where he had two touchdowns vultured from him. If that TD variance goes his way, he has a 20-point game, he’s over $7,000 and people are banging down the doors to roster him. He has seen at least 20 opportunities in each of his past five games. As far as the matchup goes, Todd Gurley got there against this improved run defense in Detroit. With the myriad ways they can use Johnson, they’ll figure out how to get him involved.

djAtlanta Falcons

Implied Total: 22.5

Spread: +5 @ Green Bay

Matt Ryan ($5,400) hasn’t been this cheap since 2015. Atlanta has been a different team on the road this year. Not good different … nobody likes change (Shoutout Ross from Friends). So far this season, the Falcons have been about six points worse on the road. That has led to 10 extra pass attempts per game. If they’re in catch up mode, Ryan makes a lot of sense at such a cheap price.

ATL

Baltimore Ravens

Implied Total: 23.25

Spread: +6.5 @ Kansas City

Typically in DFS, we like to see target concentration when looking at WRs and TEs. Lamar Jackson ($5,700) has no interest in helping you decide on a pass catcher to stack him up with. With the possibility of Joe Flacco returning, that muddies the QB conversation. Gus Edwards ($4,500) has been trending in the wrong direction for a couple of weeks now but gets a cushy matchup against a Chiefs team that is near the bottom of the league when it comes to fantasy points allowed to opposing running backs. The volume has been there, but he’s going to have to find the end zone to provide much value for your roster.

gus

Buffalo Bills

Implied Total: 21

Spread: -3.5 vs. New York Jets

Josh Allen ($5,500) started off his career with four of his first six games resulting in single-digit fantasy performances. Then, he took some time to deal with an elbow issue. Since returning from injury, he has rushed for 234 of his 389 yards in the past two games. That rushing production plus his touchdown on the ground has accounted for 53.5 percent of his fantasy points in that span, so you have to hope he’s going to tuck and run this week if you’re playing him. The floor is there, with two straight weeks of 26 or more DK points, but a 21-point implied total means he’s not necessarily a lock for lineups.allen

Carolina Panthers

Implied Total: 24.5

Spread: -2 @ Cleveland

Christian McCaffrey ($9,300) is the only running back on the main slate above $9,000. He has one of the most sustainable workloads from a running back that we’ve ever seen. The floor is there thanks to his receiving production and he’s approaching 900 yards on the ground. Over the past six weeks, he’s been finding the end zone as well. Ten of his eleven touchdowns have come since Week 8. There’s always a case to be made for fading the most expensive guy at a position, but with five of his past six games above 22 DK points, it’s hard to argue for a fade here.

 

cmc

Cincinnati Bengals

Implied Total: 17

Spread: +14 vs Los Angeles Chargers

Andy Dalton? IR. A.J. Green? IR. We’ve seen the Tyler Boyd ($6,100) solo act already. Wouldn’t buy tickets to that show again. That leaves Joe Mixon ($6,400) as a two-touchdown road underdog, or C.J Uzomah ($3,500). Uzomah has seen exactly twice as many targets per game with Jeff Driskel than he saw with Andy Dalton. With no clear cheap TE option this week, he’s worth a GPP dart throw this week.uzomah

Cleveland Browns

Implied Total: 22.5

Spread: +2 vs. Carolina

Nick Chubb’s ($6,700) workload took a bit of a step backward last week. Heading into Week 13, Chubb had seen at least 20 opportunities in five straight games. He saw his full complement of targets with three in the game, but only saw nine carries which was his lowest total since Week 6. He’s been a bit touchdown dependent, but this potential game script sets up pretty nicely for him to get involved in all facets of the offense. chubb

Dallas Cowboys

Implied Total: 23.75

Spread: -3.5 vs. Philadelphia

Ezekiel Elliot ($8,600) is one of the best plays on the slate this week. He’ll certainly be one of the highest owned running backs on the slate. Zeke has outperformed salary-based expectations in each of the past four games. He’s seen at least five targets in nine games so far this season. Elliot has one of the most valuable rushing roles in all of football and now has added a solid receiving floor.zeke

Denver Broncos

Implied Total: 24.75

Spread: -4 @ San Francisco

Demaryius Thomas is in Houston and Emmanuel Sanders is on IR. That leaves two young, talented skill players worth considering this weekend. At wide receiver, you have Courtland Sutton ($4,500). He’s averaging 5.5 targets per game since Week 9. Sutton came close to 20 DK points last week thanks to increased air yards and a solid WOPR. It was easy to overlook the UDFA rookie Phillip Lindsay ($6,300) at the beginning of the year, but not anymore. He’s had at least 14 opportunities in each of the past six games including three with at least 20.

 

lindsay

Detroit Lions

Implied Total: 21.5

Spread: -2.5 vs. Arizona

If you’re playing Kenny Golladay ($6,400), you have to hope that they move him around enough to avoid Patrick Peterson. He’s averaging 11 targets over the past four games and has seen at least 110 air yards in three games during that span. The breakout for Golladay has been real this year. On a per game basis, he’s at or near the top twenty in most receiving categories.golladay

Green Bay Packers

Implied Total: 27.5

Spread: -5 vs. Atlanta

Firing a coach mid-season can have a galvanizing effect on a team. Aaron Rodgers ($6,000) has sleepwalked through most of the season but gets a juicy matchup this week against the Atlanta Falcons at home. They’re favored by nearly a touchdown and implied for almost four touchdowns worth of scoring. He had some spike games before the bye but has only eclipsed 20 fantasy points in one game over the past six weeks.

rodgersHouston Texans

Implied Total: 26.75

Spread: -4.5 vs. Indianapolis

Deshaun Watson ($5,900) is in play in all formats this weekend. He’s thrown at least one touchdown in every game this season including six multi-touchdown games. Watson has had a couple of duds, but the spike games have been great with four 25-plus point games this season. They’re home against their division rivals this weekend in a matchup that isn’t particularly scary.

watson

Kansas City Chiefs

Implied Total: 29.75

Spread: -6.5 vs. Baltimore

This is going to be a test of the Kansas City offense. If they were on the road in this matchup, I’d have some pause but I think the Chiefs are as stackable as always this week. The matchup will likely suppress ownership, which will give you some leverage on the field if you stack them up in a few different combinations. The Stat Explorer has tempered expectations for Tyreek Hill ($8,000) in a tough matchup but is pretty high on Patrick Mahomes ($7,000) and Travis Kelce ($6,700) still. kc

Los Angeles Chargers

Implied Total: 31

Spread: -14 vs. Cincinnati

With Melvin Gordon unlikely to suit up and the Chargers’ coaching staff talking about how Austin Ekeler ($6,200) is wearing down, Justin Jackson ($3,800) makes sense at his price. He saw nine touches on just 14 snaps last week, rushing eight times for 63 yards and a touchdown while adding a 19-yard reception. Jackson scored 15 points on limited touches. As a two-touchdown favorite, there should be plenty of carries for the 23-year-old running back from Northwestern.  

Miami Dolphins

Implied Total: 19.75

Spread: +7.5 vs. New England

I’m going to keep riding the Kenny Stills ($4,100) train this week. We saw another bump in usage for him last week as he tied his season-high in targets. He came just shy of 100 air yards last Sunday and found the end zone for a 14-point day at under $4,000. Now that he’s healthy, look for him to be involved in some deep shots once again. At this price, it only takes one play. stills

New England Patriots

Implied Total: 27.25

Spread: -7.5 @ Miami

On the other side of this game, you have a sub-$5,000 Rob Gronkowski ($4,800). The haters will tell you his targets are down, which they are. But I’m optimistic, as he draws a solid matchup against the Dolphins who have given up the fifth most points to the TE position this season. They’ve given up multiple touchdowns to three different TEs since Week 7. Only one of those tight ends saw more than four targets. Don’t overthink this.

New Orleans Saints

Implied Total: 31.25

Spread: -8 @ Tampa Bay

The weather looks like it may be an issue in Tampa Bay this weekend, but I’d imagine it’s going to take more than rain to slow down Drew Brees ($6,600) and the rest of this Saints offense. After a really hot start to the season, Michael Thomas’ ($8,600) targets have dipped a bit over the past three weeks. With that said, his actual market share hasn’t been awful outside of the Philadelphia game. There’s not a better “get right” spot than being a WR against the Bucs though. Tampa Bay’s ability to score as well should make this a high scoring game.

thomas

New York Giants

Implied Total: 22.25

Spread: -3.5 @ Washington

Saquon Barkley ($8,900) is one of a handful of running backs that you can actually trust regardless of game script. He’s only had two games below 20 DK points all year. Barkley has the second highest RB salary on the slate and is well worth the price.
saquon

New York Jets

Implied Total: 17.5

Spread: +3.5 @ Buffalo

Isaiah Crowell ($3,600) had been in the teens as far as opportunities go over the past few weeks, then his usage exploded last week as he saw 21 carries and five targets. At his price, you’d take 26 opportunities in any matchup. The Jets are getting their rookie QB back and are underdogs in this matchup on the road versus Buffalo. There are better cash options as far as cheap RBs go, but as a tournament flier Crowell makes sense because of what he affords you elsewhere.

Oakland Raiders

Implied Total: 20.25

Spread: +11 vs. Pittsburgh

In theory, Jalen Richard ($4,100) would make sense in this type of game script. He’s had four targets in each of the past three weeks. Richard hasn’t scored a touchdown all season. That, coupled with the fact that Pittsburgh has allowed the fifth-fewest points to running backs makes this less than appealing.

Philadelphia Eagles

Implied Total: 20.25

Spread: +3.5 @ Dallas

If Zach Ertz ($6,400) were a wide receiver he would be tied with Julio Jones and Odell Beckham Jr. in fantasy points per game. He would be sixth in total targets and second in receptions. And yet, he’s $6,400. If you had a WR with this volume and touchdown expectation, you’d imagine he’d be in the $8,000 range. Ertz is in play across all formats. ertz

Pittsburgh Steelers

Implied Total: 31.25

Spread: -11 @ Oakland

I’m not sure if you’ve seen the five million tweets about Jaylen Samuel’s ($3,800) eligibility on Yahoo, but he is considered a RB/TE on that site. Which makes sense considering that he only saw double-digit carries one time in his career at NC State. He tallied more receptions than carries in his career there and attended the combine as a TE. That bodes well for his outlook on DK this weekend. Samuels saw two of his three targets come in the red zone last week. Even in a timeshare, his role should be secure, and he’s an interesting value play.

San Francisco 49ers

Implied Total: 20.75

Spread: +4 vs. Denver

Jeff Wilson ($3,800) is all the way down below $4,000. He had a decent showing on the ground, rushing for 61 yards on 15 carries. What makes you excited about Wilson, especially on DraftKings, is the fact that he turned nine targets into eight catches and 73 yards. Five of those opportunities came inside of the red zone, including two inside of the 10-yard line. He saw 25 snaps the week before. With Matt Breida banged up, Wilson saw a usage rate above 43 percent. The 23-year-old running back gets a Denver defense that has been exploited by running backs so far this season — they rank 26th in fantasy points allowed to the position. wilson

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Implied Total: 23.25

Spread: +8 vs. New Orleans

Both Chris Godwin ($4,900) and Adam Humphries ($4,900) are at the same price this week. In DeSean Jackson’s absence last week, they found their way into lineups and were trending that way again. Godwin holds the air yards advantage over the past couple of weeks, while Humphries has seen more targets. In cash, either is fine because they’re likely to see between six and nine targets. In GPPs, though, I prefer Humphries for the ownership discount. He’s scored five touchdowns in as many weeks.

Washington

Implied Total: 18.75

Spread: +3.5 vs. New York Giants

New York has been very good against quarterbacks so far this season, allowing just the eighth most fantasy points to the position. With Landon Collins gone, this defense could look a bit different. Even though Washington is down to their third option in Mark Sanchez ($4,000), he could make some sense in a tournament if you want to get on a different lineup construction. But that’s about the nicest thing I can muster up the courage to say about Sanchez.

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