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Week 8 Primetime Slate DFS Breakdown

Who are the best plays for the Week 8 DFS primetime slate on DraftKings and FanDuel? Tyler Loechner runs through notes on the primetime short slate featuring SNF/MNF games.1

DSF Week 8 Primetime Slate

HomeAwaySpreadFavorite ImpliedUnderdog ImpliedVegas Total
Kansas City ChiefsGreen Bay PackersGB -526.2521.2547.5
Pittsburgh SteelersMiami DolphinsPIT -1428.7514.7543.5

DFS Week 8 Primetime Slate theory thoughts:

  • The QB choices on this slate are laughably bad. You’re giving yourself a serious handicap by not choosing Aaron Rodgers. But if you’re in a large-field GPP, is it worth choosing one of the other QBs on the slate because of ownership?
  • The injury to Patrick Mahomes shakes up this short slate in a major way. Do you still trust Kansas City’s primary pass options as elite fantasy producers? Or do you skip their big names because of Mahomes’ absence?

Quarterbacks

Chalk: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers

DK – QB1; FD – QB2

With Mahomes out on this slate, it’s Rodgers or bust. The other QB options are Mason RudolphMatt Moore, and Josh Rosen/Ryan Fitzpatrick. Rodgers leads all QBs over the last month in terms of Expected Points (EP).

Rodgers is the runaway best QB option for the Week 8 DFS primetime slate.

Contrarian: Mason Rudolph, Pittsburgh Steelers

DK – QB3; FD – QB3

Rudolph was not spectacular in his earlier stint as Pittsburgh’s QB, but he wasn’t a dumpster fire either. He has a strong TD-INT ratio on the year (7-2), and he had somewhere between 12-17 fantasy points in his three full games as the starter. However, he averaged fewer than 175 yards per game. Rudolph is unlikely to have a ceiling game, but he could score 15 points. That would be plenty to put you in a great position if Rodgers were to have an off night in his game.

Running Backs

Chalk: James Conner, Pittsburgh Steelers

DK – RB1; FD – RB2

Conner has been rolling lately and he now gets a dream matchup as a 14-point home favorite against the Dolphins. Here’s what I wrote about Conner in my 15 Stats to Know for DFS in Week 8 piece:

Over the last five weeks, no team has allowed more FPOE to opposing RBs than the Dolphins. They have given up the second-most rushing attempts (27.4 per game), second-most rushing yards (129.2), third-most YPC (4.7), and 10th-most receiving yards (53.2) per game to opposing RBs in that span. Conner has scored at least 26.5 fantasy points in two of his last three and is a 14.5-point home favorite against the lackluster Dolphins in Week 8.

Contrarian: Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins

DK – RB6; FD – RB6

Drake is trade bait, and with the deadline on Tuesday, it’s possible the Dolphins try to use Drake as much as possible if their true intent is to ship him. Mysterious, unprovable narratives aside, Drake is a decent play at cost given his usage in the passing game. Miami is giving Mark Walton a bigger look as they eye life after Drake, but outside of a Week 6 outlier, Walton has never earned more than two targets in a game. Drake, on the other hand, has at least three receptions in every game since Week 2, and with the Dolphins playing as 14-point underdogs, another handful of receptions appears to be in the cards. He’s a better play on DraftKings.

Wide Receivers

Chalk: Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs

DK – WR2; FD – WR2

Hill doesn’t feel great as chalk, but neither do any of the other big-name WRs. I’ll take Hill’s game-breaking ability in any tournament though, and will essentially never give up the chance to own him on a two-game slate, since he is a true slate-breaker. Hill’s ceiling is obviously neutered with Mahomes sidelined, but we did see Hill connect on a 57-yard TD with Matt Moore in Week 7, so all hope is not lost. Additionally, the Packers D was dusted by Amari Cooper (14-11-226-1) and Kenny Golladay (9-5-121-0) in two of their last three games.

Contrarian: Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers

DK – WR6; FD – WR13

With Rudolph under center from Weeks 2-5, Johnson had respectable performances, dropping a line of 6-3-52-1 in Week 3 and 6-6-77-1 in Week 4. He then set a season high with eight targets in Week 5, a game Rudolph started but didn’t finish. Johnson was clearly a favorite target of Rudolph’s, and with the latter back on the field, Johnson’s stock gets a big bump. Johnson had a 20% team target share Weeks 2-5, second on the team and only just barely behind JuJu Smith-Schuster (22%).

Contrarian: Preston Williams, Miami Dolphins

DK – WR13; FD – WR9

Williams ranks 16th in air yards per game but has just one TD to show for it. He’s averaging 96 air yards per game. All other WRs averaging at least that level have an average of 3.2 TDs on the year, including Williams’ teammate Devante Parker (3 TDs, 108 air yards per game). Ownership will gravitate toward Parker because of his recent three-game streak with a TD, but Williams is due for positive regression soon.

Tight Ends

Chalk: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs

DK – TE1; FD – TE1

Don’t be fooled by Kelce’s lack of TDs. A correction is coming.

Contrarian: Mike Gesicki, Miami Dolphins

DK – TE4; FD – TE4

Gesicki’s last two games have been (relatively) strong: 3-51-0 and 4-41-0, and he has handled a respectable 14% team target share in that span. He’s super cheap on the slate, and Pittsburgh has given up the fourth-most points, sixth-most EP2 and fourth-most FPOE3 to TEs over the last five weeks.

Gesicki is a solid punt for the Week 8 DFS primetime slate.

Credit: Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire Pictured: Aaron Rodgers

  1. An important note: I’m writing this column with tournaments and GPPs top of mind. Cash game plays on short slates are usually easier to figure out because the options are so thin; tournaments require quite a bit of game theory, which can be half the fun.  (back)
  2. Expected points.  (back)
  3. Fantasy points over expectation.  (back)

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