Draftkings NFL Cash & GPP Lineup Daily Fantasy Football Week 15
We have arrived to the Draftkings championship week. If you are fortunate enough to earn a seat, good luck to you as 200 entries compete for the $2 million top prize. The Draftkings main slate is a unique one this week with only 11 games. There are two games on Saturday along with the usual Thursday Night, Sunday Night, and Monday Night games that are not on the main slate. On top of that, we have six teams (Steelers, Patriots, Jags, Eagles, Rams, and Vikings) potentially able to clinch a playoff berth this week. Let’s dive right in.
As a polar opposite of last week’s Vegas stats, this week features three teams that are double-digit favorites. The Saints are a massive 16 point favorite against the Jets. The Vikings are 11 point favorites at home against the Bengals, and the Jags are 10.5 home favorites against the Texans. Outside of these three teams, the Eagles (7.5) and Ravens (7.5) are road touchdown favorites, rounding out the largest spreads of the week.
There are a few games worth targeting this week, starting with the Pats at the Steelers, which has a slate high 53 game total. The Rams at Seahawks, Jets at Saints, and Packers at Panthers all have nice game totals over 47. Outside of those games, there aren’t any games with totals over 45.
As far as implied team totals, the Saints are the clear front-runners with an implied total of 31.75 points. The Pats have the second-best total of 28 points. The Vikings (26.5), Jags (25), Steelers (25), Panthers (24.75) and Seahawks (24.75) round out the top 5 highest implied team totals.
All this Vegas data was taken as of Wednesday night, so I strongly suggest checking back on Vegas Insiders on Sunday morning.
Cam Newton (DK $6,400) – Cam comes into week 15 as one of my favorite quarterbacks of the week. He’s the 6th highest priced quarterback and has a really good matchup at home against the Packers (29th Afpa vs. QBs). We saw Deshone Kizer light up this same Packers secondary last week and scored 19.26 DK points, that’s about Cam’s floor. Cam performs much better as a home favorite opposed to as a home underdog, and that is the situation he finds himself in this week. His team’s implied total is in the top 5 of the slate (24.75) and I expect this game to be a lot closer than most anticipate. I also love Cam’s rushing upside. Since week 6, Cam has rushed the ball more than 9 times in all but two games. Cam has a nice floor with his rushing upside and has a good ceiling of close to 30 points.
Drew Brees (DK $6,500) – An interesting pivot off Cam would be to pay the extra $100 to get to Drew Brees. Brees isn’t the same Brees we’ve grown to know with the Saints offense constantly throwing the ball 40+ times. Because of the Saints dynamic rushing duo, Brees has failed to meet salary expectations 5 of the last 6 games. Brees has only met salary expectation at home twice this season. All this points to a sneaky gpp play with Brees going up against the Jets funnel defense as they rank 32nd in aFPA to QB’s and are 7th in aFPA to RBs. Brees’ floor is much lower than Newton, but his ceiling always makes him appealing for tournaments.
Blake Bortles (DK $5,700) – Scraping the bottom of the barrel for a value QB is really difficult this week. With the limited number of games, there is a limited number of value quarterbacks on the slate. I’m more than likely going to stay in the midrange ($6,000 – $7,000). But if you are really looking for value, I would say take a look at Bortles. Bortles is coming off of two really decent games in which he combined to throw for 577 yards with 4 touchdowns and 0 interceptions (46.58 DK points). This week he faces a horrible Texans defense that ranks 30th in aFPA to opposing quarterbacks. Believe it or not, I may have talked myself into playing Bortles as I’m writing this.
C. Newton, C. Keenum, B. Roethlisberger, R. Wilson, B. Bortles
D. Brees, T. Brady, A. Rodgers, J. Goff
Le’Veon Bell (DK $9,300) – Finally we get the opportunity to roster Le’Veon in the main slate. Bell is the highest priced back, $700 more than Kamara, and at this point, it doesn’t matter. He’s in a league of his own, and the upwards of $9,000 price tag doesn’t scare me. Bell has been priced over 9K almost every game this season and has smashed nearly every week. The past three games, Bell is averaging 33.66 DK points and is averaging over 25 touches per game. Although Bell has only carried the ball more than 20 times once the last three weeks, he’s still seeing double-digit targets and has converted that to over 270 receiving yards in the last three games.
Kenyan Drake (DK $5,800) – Kenyan Drake has been absolutely smashing since Damien Williams went down in week 12. Drake has taken over the Dolphins backfield and has produced better than Gase could have expected. In two games without Williams, Drake is playing 85% of the snaps, has 91% of the rushing attempts and has accumulated 234 yards with 1 touchdown and 8 receptions. He has accumulated 53.4 DK points in those two games. This week he goes up against the Bills defense that ranks 32nd in aFPA to opposing running backs and just got lit up by old man Frank Gore for 130 yards. Drake is the chalk this week.
** It’s worth checking William’s practice status as he is pushing to get back on the field. **
Jerick McKinnon (DK $4,800) – There isn’t a free square value play like there was last week with Gio Bernard, but this week McKinnon might rank as my favorite. McKinnon is the same price as Samaje Perine, who undoubtedly comes with a safer floor given that Washington isn’t utilizing a running back committee but I still like McKinnon. McKinnon is starting to separate himself from Latavius Murray, having played more snaps (53% to 46%) and received more of targets (18 to 8) in the past 4 weeks. Murray still sees the majority of the rushing attempts (60:43), but DK’s PPR format helps make McKinnon more valuable. McKinnon is a huge home favorite against the Bengal who rank 30th in aFPA allowed. I do have some hesitation that if the Vikings get out to a big lead, it could mean more of Murray pounding the ball opposed to McKinnon catching the ball out of the backfield, but I think this game is closer than most anticipate.
L. Bell, T. Gurley, K. Drake, G. Bernard, S. Perine, L. McCoy
A. Kamara > M. Ingram, L. Fournette, K. Williams, J. Ajayi, J. McKinnon, C. McCaffrey
Michael Thomas (DK $7,400) – Outside of Antonio Brown ($9,100) the next best receiver to hit cash game value is Michael Thomas. He’s one of six active receivers averaging over 10 targets per game in the past month and this week he has a nice matchup against the Jets. The Jets rank 28th in aFPA to opposing wide receivers, and Thomas leads the team in targets with 125 on the season and 9.6 targets per game. Thomas has the better matchup than Hopkins at $7,700 and Thielen $7,600.
Devin Funchess (DK $6,600) – The other highest owned receiver along with Thomas might be Funchess. Funchess has either scored a touchdown or reached the 100-yard bonus each of his last 4 games and now gets one of the best matchups you could ask for against the Packers. The Packers are the worst team in the league against opposing wide receivers, and this game could very well shoot out if Aaron Rodgers suits up. Funchess leads the team in targets (39) since the Panthers traded Benjamin. You don’t always have to pair Cam with any of his receivers because of Cam’s rushing upside, but Funchess would be the ideal stack if you do.
AJ Green (DK $6,500) – AJ Green has seen a crazy price drop and is all the way down to $6,500. Green is a top 5 receiver in the league, and I’ll always be interested in Green at this price point. The problem is that Green is going up against the Vikings who rank 6th in aFPA to opposing wide receivers and will see a lot of Xavier Rhodes. Green may be a risk for cash games considering there is Funches around that price range. But I love getting exposure to him at his price in tournaments.
Jordy Nelson (DK $6,300) – The ghost of Jordy Nelson. He’s had a terrible year, but with the news that Aaron Rodgers could return, that could mean an uptick in targets for Nelson. Unfortunately, his price actually increased above $6,000, so he doesn’t come as much of a bargain. But he should come in at single-digit ownership, which makes for a nice tournament flyer.
A. Brown, M. Thomas, D. Funches, A. Green, M. Goodwin, A. Jeffrey, R. Anderson, D. Westbrook
A. Thielen, B. Cooks, D. Adams, J. Crowder, D. Baldwin, P. Richardson, R. Matthews
Zach Ertz (DK $6,000) – This week we don’t have the value that we had last week with Ertz missing the game making Trey Burton a plug and play. We’re still waiting to hear if Ertz will play this week, but if he does, he’s substantially cheaper than Gronk ($7,300). Even without Wentz, Nick Foles is a formattable backup quarterback. It doesn’t get much better than a matchup against the Giants who rank 26th in aFPA to tight ends. If Ertz is active, he should be considered the top play at tight end.
Jimmy Graham (DK $4,900) – Graham is an even bigger discount from the high priced tight ends. You can’t deny Graham’s red zone market share, and the matchup against the Rams should be a game that is back and forth. The Rams are respectable against tight ends (12th aFPA), but last time these two faced off Graham went for 15.7 DK points. The sub $5,000 price tag seems reasonable to me.
Vernon Davis (DK $3,900) – Davis might be my favorite punt play. He’s taken over the starting tight end job with Reed being placed on IR. The issue is he’s been relatively quiet the last four games only catching 7 balls for 117 yards. The bright side is that last week he saw his targets jump back up to 7 against the Chargers and he was able to find his way into the end zone. Below $4,000 against the Cardinals (18th aFPA vs. TE), I’ll take my chances here if I need salary relief.
R. Gronkowski, Z. Ertz, J. Graham, V. Davis
E. Engram, D. Walker, G. Olsen, C. Clay, A. Seferian-Jenkins
Minnesota Vikings (DK $3,500) – The top five priced defense are all in positive spots. Of the five, I like the Vikings the most given their $1,000 salary savings from the Jags. They’re up against the Bengals who just got embarrassed by the 4-9 Bears. The Vikings are coming off of a disappointing loss and should look to rebound as huge home favorites.
Miami Dolphins (DK $2,700) – If Tyrod Taylor is ruled out on Sunday, that could leave Joe Webb starting for the Bills. Joe Webb showed some potential in the preseason, but the Dolphins defense just put out their best performance of the season beating the Patriots on Monday Night Football. Check the news on Taylor. If Taylor is out I wouldn’t mind taking a flyer on Miami.
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