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The Thursday night showdown kicks off the Week 13 NFL DFS contests, and we’ve got the picks to help you win big tonight and make some serious green!NOTE: For a refresher on showdown general rules and strategy and how it relates to Week 13 NFL DFS showdowns, see the Week 1 TNF showdown article. Week 13 NFL DFS MVP candidates (1.5x points)Some notes on the differences between MVP on FanDuel and DraftKings: The 1.5x point boost on FD comes with no salary penalty, while and DK also bumps the salary to 1.5x – a crucial factor in deciding who we can and cannot afford on both sites. We can use this to our advantage on FD by occasionally targeting non-QBs to establish more variance and more unique lineups, and on DK it allows us to build more hearty overall stacks when we punt the MVP position with a cheap but high-upside player.Week 13 NFL DFS Chalk: Dak Prescott (FD $16,500, DK $17,700)Value Pivot (FD): Taysom Hill (FD $7,000, DK $14,400)Value Pivot #2 (DK): Mark Ingram (FD $12,000, DK $7,50...

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Win Daily Sports is proudly partnered with Monkey Knife Fight. MKF is offering you a FREE Win Daily Gold membership for three months ($150 value) simply for making your first deposit on Monkey Knife Fight. And if free gold isn’t attractive enough, they’re also offering a 100% match bonus up to $100 when you use promo code WINDAILY.

Tonight’s Thursday night matchup brings us to New Orleans with a matchup between the Saints (5-6) and the Cowboys (7-4).  The Cowboys look to bounce back tonight after 2 losing straight.  For the Saints, they’re handing the offense over to Taysom Hill tonight who makes his first start at QB of the season.  The Saints come into this matchup riding a 4 game losing streak.  Things have not gone well for them since Jameis Winston went down. 

More or Less – 3.6x Payout

Dak Prescott – 270.5 Passing Yards – More

Dak Prescott should have one of his top weapons back tonight.  After sitting out the last 2 games, Cooper was activated from the Covid-19 list yesterday.  Prescott now has his full arsenal of weapons healthy. Well as healthy as you can be for the tail end of the football season.  For the first time in several weeks he’ll have Cooper, Lamb, Gallup, and Schultz to throw to. 

We’ve seen Prescott shine at times this year and tonight should be one of those times.  He’s hit the 271 yards mark in 4 out of his last 6 weeks.  In what I expect to be a close game tonight, Prescott should be able to focus enough on his passing game to hit his 271 yards.  I’m going with the More side for Prescott.

Taysom Hill – 180.5 Passing Yards – More

The Saints have finally made the switch at QB to Taysom Hill.  With Hill finally healthy enough to play again he’ll have a chance to start at QB for the first time since Week 14 of last season against the Eagles.  Hill started 4 games at QB last season and did fairly well.  In 3 of his 4 starts he easily surpassed tonight’s goal of 181 yards.  He had 233, 232, and 291 yards. 

In the one game that he didn’t get to the 181 yards last season, it was more due to game script as the Saints destroyed the Broncos 31-3 in Week 12.  Only once this season have the Cowboys given up less than the 181 yards goal for Hill tonight.  Look for Hill to easily surpass his goal tonight.  I’m going with the More here as well.  

Rapid Fire – 3x Payout

Dak Prescott vs. Taysom Hill (+90.5)

I’ve highlighted in the More or Less section that both QB’s should hit their number tonight.  That said, both QB’s have a very different number and skill set.  While Hill has shown some upside with his arm, he also tends to run the ball quite a bit for a QB which somewhat lowers his pass yardage ceiling.  He did pass for 291 yards in one game last season, but that was an outlier.  His ceiling is closer to his other two games where he finished in the low 230 yard range and that’s where I think he ends up tonight.

If we look at Prescott, his ceiling is much higher and he’s facing a Saints secondary that has given up close to 3k passing yards through their first 11 games this season.  This is the type of game that has ceiling written all over it for Prescott.  Even though MKF Is giving 90.5 passing yards to Hill in this one, I like Prescott tonight.  Prescott for the win in this one. 

Alvin Kamara vs. Ezekiel Elliot (+11.5)

As of writing this, Kamara is still listed as questionable.  I’m going to write this under the assumption that he’s playing.  In the few games before he was injured Kamara struggled producing on the ground.  In those 3 games he had 51, 61, and 50 rushing yards. 

If we look at the Cowboy’s defense, they’ve started to show some cracks against the run.  Over the last 6 weeks they’ve given up over 100 yards rushing 4 times.  Through the first 5 weeks of the year they hadn’t given up more than 74 in any game.  If Kamara proves to be healthy tonight, he’s looking at a solid chance for a rebound game. 

Switching gears to Ezekiel Elliot, he gets an extremely tough matchup tonight.  Only Washington and Tampa Bay have given up less rushing yards to running backs this season.  They’ve given up more than 80 rushing yards to running backs just twice this season. 

Even if we had a healthy Elliot, I wouldn’t love him here so a banged up Elliot has me ready to gag in this matchup.  Especially knowing that Prescott has all his receiving weapons available to him tonight.  Coming into this matchup, granted he’s been banged up, Elliot has been downright bad on the ground.  He hasn’t surpassed 52 rushing yards since he had 69 yards against the Patriots in week 6. 

As it stands right now, I like Kamara to have more pure rushing yards tonight.  Even though Elliot gets the bonus of 11.5 yards tonight, he doesn’t do enough on the ground to get close to Kamara. Kamara for the win!

Good luck tonight and hope you cash!

Make sure you follow me on Twitter at @rangerzfan79 and be sure to sign up for an ALL ACCESS GOLD ACCOUNT here at Win Daily Sports. Gain access to our Projection Models and jump into our Discord where we will have our experts talking plays across every sport and slate! 

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Win Daily Sports is proudly partnered with Monkey Knife Fight. MKF is offering you a FREE Win Daily Gold membership for three months ($150 value) simply for making your first deposit on Monkey Knife Fight. And if free gold isn’t attractive enough, they’re also offering a 100% match bonus up to $100 when you use promo code WINDAILY.Today I’ll be highlighting one of my favorite contests on MKF, the Touchdown Dance.  This Sunday MKF is running a special contest where if you play in a $5+ Touchdown Dance contest and all 3 of your players score a touchdown you get share of the jackpot.  Today’s jackpot is $5,000! Let’s dig in and see if we can find some touchdowns!Touchdown DanceJonathan Taylor vs. Indianapolis ColtsIf you’ve been following Jonathan Taylor for the past few weeks you know the man is on fire.  He has rushing touchdowns in 6 straight games, with 2 games of multiple touchdowns du...

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Bye weeks are here ladies and gentlemen! Week 6 is upon us and we have loads of content coming out over the next few days to help you take down your GPP's and cash in your 50/50's and Double-Ups. In addition to bye weeks we have a London game that pulls away from the main slate and a slew of injuries that we have to navigate so be sure to hop in discord to get all of the updated information leading up to the first kick. When you have time, be sure to check out Stix's Cash Game Checkdown article, as he will provide his own insights on some of the plays below and will likely have some guys that I didn't even consider. I will not waste a ton of your time here as I know what you are here for so enjoy the WDS: Week 6 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 10.17***Note to all new players: Any players that may list in cash are viable options for GPP play. Just understand that Cash plays are likely to have higher ownership.***GPP:Javonte Williams, $5,000DK.$5,600: I have been trying to temper my expec...

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We are here ladies and gentlemen! Week 5 is upon us and we have loads of content coming out over the next few days to help you take down your GPP's and cash in your 50/50's and Double-Ups. Be sure to hop in discord to get all of the updated information leading up to the first kick. When you have time, be sure to check out Adam's Game x Game article, as he will provide his own insights on some of the plays below and will likely have some guys that I didn't even consider. I will not waste a ton of your time here as I know what you are here for so enjoy the WDS: Week 5 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 10.10***Note to all new players: Any players that may list in cash are viable options for GPP play. Just understand that Cash plays are likely to have higher ownership.***GPP:Aaron Jones, Packers, $7,900DK/$8,400FD: (6.5%)With King Henry being the de facto top option, James Robinson in a potential smash spot against the Titans, Swift against the Vikings, and possibly Tony Pollard becoming the...

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We are here ladies and gentlemen! Week 4 is upon us and we have loads of content coming out over the next few days to help you take down your GPP’s and cash in your 50/50’s and Double-Ups. Be sure to hop in discord to get all of the updated information leading up to the first kick. When you have time, be sure to check out Stix’s Cash Game and GPP articles, as he will provide his own insights on some of the plays below and will likely have some guys that I didn’t even consider. I will not waste a ton of your time here as I know what you are here for so enjoy the WDS: Week 4 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 10.3

***Note to all new players: Any players that may list in cash are viable options for GPP play. Just understand that Cash plays are likely to have higher ownership.***

GPP:

(if you do not want to use Javonte because of the timeshare Michael Carter is in a great spot as a pivot at 5%)

Javonte Williams, Broncos $5,000DK/$5,900FD : (1.5%)

I will continue to beat this drum because it is only a matter of time before his talent results in a GPP takedown. With Melvin Gordon playing well, people will continue to avoid playing him in a 50/50 time share situation until the status quo changes. As a rookie he already has all of the tools to be an elite three down back but there is one thing people do not know, yet. He is one of the most intelligent people on the football field full stop. Not only does he understand his role, he understands the roles of every other player on the field which combined with his physical skills can and will make him an elite running back in this league the moment he gets the backfield to himself. Against the Ravens his pass catching ability is going to be vital (remember what I said about Swift last week being able to exploit the linebackers and safety’s). He will be finding open zones due to the cover 1 free concepts that are perfect for his open field agility and ability to break tackles. Gordon is questionable as of now but most people will stay away due to not knowing if he will be the main guy in the late games.

Nick Chubb, Browns, $7,000DK/$8,000FD: (3.5%)

Chubb is another player that I will continue to ride until he finally explodes and the fact that you can get him for only 7K, at under 4% ownership, against a bottom three run defense, in a pickem game, with a 51.5 total screams GPP play. Last week the Browns finally gave us the volume that we were expecting from Chubb with 22 carries. Luckily for us this week he only gained 84 yards and failed to get into the end zone for the first time in the regular season since week 10 of 2020. Chubb is an elite back averaging 5.5 yards per carry and Jarvis Landry will be out for at least a few more weeks. While Beckham will try to put the team on his back the Browns are at their absolute best when controlling the game from the ground.

Miles Sanders, Eagles, $6,400DK/$6,500FD: (3%)

The Eagles coaching staff embarrassed themselves on a nationally televised game and has everyone asking them why they would choose to not even consider running the football against a team that was short two of their defensive linemen and was susceptible to the run. Miles Sanders racked up 27 yards on only two carries and 28 yards on only three catches. It was an embarrassing game plan, so I am fairly certain after all of those questions and the clear accuracy issues of Jalen Hurts that they will make more of an effort to at minimum run enough to keep the Chiefs honest. I just do not see a scenario where Sirianni bails on his run game to an embarrassing degree two weeks in a row.

Also Consider: Zack Moss (3.5%), Michael Carter (5%), Antonio Gibson (10%)

WDS: Week 4 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 10.3

Cash:

Derrick Henry, Titans, $8,800DK/$10,200FD: (20%)

This doesn’t take much explanation, his price will continue to climb from here and he is in a prime spot against the Jets. One thing that I would like to point out that Adam already has. Henry is now being used in the passing game. He is on pace for 73 targets this season dwarfing his career-high of 31. So now we have Derrick Henry catching four or five passes a game and his rushing volume is still the best in the league. Add in no AJ Brown and he is a must for your cash contests. Draftkings has not caught up to what Henry is doing in PPR. He is $1,000 too cheap this week.

David Montgomery, Bears, $5,800DK/$7,500FD: (17%)

I told you guys way back in the preseason that Nagy was going to have to sacrifice his play-calling duties to have a chance to keep his job. Well, four weeks in, and the rumors are that Nagy quietly surrendered the play-calling back to Lazor this week. When that happened last season David had the best six-game stretch of his career rushing for 598 yards with seven rushing TDs and 24 catches for 226 yards and one TD. The icing on the cake is that we get to enjoy this change at the same time that the Bears match up against a competitive but defensively inept Lions squad. Sadly his ownership will be high but I am still going to mix him into my GPP’s as well as Cash contests. Happy Monty day!

Alvin Kamara, Saints, $8,400DK/$9,000FD: (18%)

I haven’t been on the Kamara train this season but this is an absolute smash spot against the Giants this week. The Giants are a little better than people give them credit for against the run but they are by no means great. Washington ended up being a random shootout on a Thursday night and they abandoned the run. Atlanta is…..Atlanta right now. Denver is the only other team they faced with a legit run game and they tore them up to the tune of 165 yards on the ground. One thing at least to this point that I will say is that I was mistaken about the volume he would get in the run game. He has exceeded 20 carries in 2 of 3 and while his receiving numbers are down with Winston he is still getting at least four targets a game which still gives him some upside in that regard.

Also Consider: Alvin Kamara (18%), D’Andre Swift (15%), Chubba Hubbard (25%/FD), Najee Harris (15%)

It is time folks and I wish you all great success in in 2021 and beyond and our WDS: Week 4 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 10.3 helps you towards your goals. It is time to start digging into DFS and make sure that we have our processes in place for a successful 2021 NFL campaign. If you have any questions about the Running Back DFS Breakdown, I will be available in the WinDaily Discord chat. Don’t forget to subscribe to the WinDaily Youtube channel and follow me @stoweby and @WinDailySports on Twitter to stay current and up to date on all of our fresh new content!

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The NFL DFS season continues with the Monday night showdown, and we’ve got the breakdown to help you win big money in the final Week 3 NFL DFS contests!

NOTE: For a refresher on showdown general rules and strategy, see my first TNF showdown article of 2021.

Let’s get to the game!

Week 3 NFL DFS MVP candidates (1.5x points)

Some notes on the differences between MVP on FanDuel and DraftKings: The 1.5x point boost on FD comes with no salary penalty, while and DK also bumps the salary to 1.5x – a crucial factor in deciding who we can and cannot afford on both sites. We can use this to our advantage on FD by occasionally targeting non-QBs to establish more variance and more unique lineups, and on DK it allows us to build more hearty overall stacks when we punt the MVP position with a cheap but high-upside player.

Week 3 NFL DFS Chalk: Dak Prescott (FD $16,000, DK $16,800)

Pivot: Jalen Hurts (FD $16,500, DK $16,500)

Contrarian #1: Ezekiel Elliott (FD $12,000, DK $12,600)

Contrarian #2: DeVonta Smith(FD $10,500, DK $10,800)

Contrarian #3: CeeDee Lamb (FD $12,500, DK $14,700)

FanDuel and DraftKings actually have Dak Prescott and Jalen Hurts flip-flopped for the top-priced player, so that could some into play in determining who’s chalkier on either site. Hurts has the better matchup overall, but the Cowboys are favored by 3 points. We can probably pencil in Hurts at captain since he should have plenty of time to throw and use his legs, and I think Prescott is too expensive given both Amari Cooper‘s ribs issue (he’ll play with a flak jacket on and is a risk to reaggravate the injury) and the emergence of both Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard after Prescott’s huge Week 1. Playing Eagles WR DeVonta Smith at Captain could allow us to Hurts and a couple big-time Dallas players.

Eagles notes: Hurts is the main target for me because of what he can do with his legs as well. I’m interested in getting exposure to one or both of the Eagles TEs, though the production from Dallas Goedert and Zach Ertz is just difficult to predict. The tight ends will have to be more involved than last Sunday, when Goedert didn’t have his first catch until the second half and finished the just two receptions (on two targets) for 24 yards. Ertz is off the COVID list now, and had just one reception (one target) for 6 yards in Week 2, but could see 3-5 targets this week. I don’t think Miles Sanders is a huge priority this week, though I might grab some Kenneth Gainwell exposure as a cheap play in a negative game script. Smith is the best option at WR, but I’ll have shares of Jalen Reagor given his upside.

Cowboys notes: We may be able to get away without Prescott, but there are avenues where we get both him and Hurts in some lineups. Ezekiel Elliott might be the top play from a contrarian perspective this week. I have little interest in Cooper, and will get most of my WR exposure with CeeDee Lamb and Cedrick Wilson. Pollard could be used as a WR as well, and I think both he and Zeke are in play this week for the Cowboys against the Eagles run defense. I’ll also have shares of Blake Jarwin and kicker Greg Zuerlein.

Week 3 NFL DFS Final thoughts (and some DOs and DON’Ts)

Remember to build your team based on a Week 1 NFL DFS narrative that makes sense.

DO: Build a trio (or quartet) of offensive weapons for a team that makes sense together

DON’T: Go too heavy on the DSTs, which don’t offer much upside in a game that should exceed the 51-point game total.

DO: Use the projected team totals to shade one way or the other with your selections.

DON’T: Live in the sub-$1K range this week. There’s just no production there.

Now that we’ve established some Week 1 NFL DFS narratives and MVP candidates, the best way to round out this piece is with a list of my favorite options in descending order, based on overall value (a combo of salary and projected points):

  1. Dak Prescott
  2. Jalen Hurts
  3. Ezekiel Elliott
  4. DeVonta Smith
  5. CeeDee Lamb
  6. Dallas Goedert
  7. Jalen Reagor
  8. Miles Sanders
  9. Amari Cooper (ribs)
  10. Kenneth Gainwell
  11. Tony Pollard
  12. Cedrick Wilson
  13. Dalton Schultz
  14. Blake Jarwin
  15. Quez Watkins
  16. Greg Zuerlein
  17. Zach Ertz
  18. Jake Elliott
  19. Eagles DST
  20. Cowboys DST

Don’t forget to read the rest of WinDaily’s excellent football articles this week as you prep for Week1 action!

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We are here ladies and gentlemen! Week 3 is upon us and we have loads of content coming out over the next few days to help you take down your GPP’s and cash in your 50/50’s and Double-Ups. Be sure to hop in discord to get all of the updated information leading up to the first kick. When you have time, be sure to check out the game by game article that Adam put out as it has a ton of information for every single game on the slate. I will not waste a ton of your time here as I know what you are here for so enjoy the WDS: Week 3 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 9.26

****My Christian McCaffrey disclaimer is null and void this week but enjoy locking him in 100% of you lineups on Thursday Night Football****

***Note to all new players: Any players that I list in cash are viable options for GPP play. Just understand that Cash plays are likely to have higher ownership.***

Cash:

Derrick Henry, Titans, ($8,600DK/$9,700FD):

I may have to include Henry with CMC as a weekly play in my Running Back DFS breakdown if he goes off again this week. For those who missed the boat on Stix telling everyone to get on the King Henry train last week, you have my sincerest condolences. You will not get him at 5% ownership at any point again this season. He is currently projected as one of the highest-owned running backs this week and will likely remain as such for the rest of the year. With the problems that the Colts are likely to have on the offensive side of the ball this week with a banged-up QB and offensive line, the game script has little chance of going in a direction that keeps Henry off the field. We are looking at another 25 carries and plenty of touchdown equity Sunday.

Chris Carson, Seahawks, ($6,400DK/$7,700FD):

Back to the well again as Carson has another juicy matchup that will likely result in a score that is reasonable for cash game play. His yards per carry, touches, and receiving number were down/non-existent from week one to week two but Carson managed to sneak into the end zone twice. As far as matchups go, you couldn’t ask for more. The Vikings defense is weak across the board and the 55.5 point game total is the best on the slate. I expect plenty of people to target the passing game but Carson will get his usual 12-15 carries, 3-5 targets, and be in a good position for scoring opportunities again.

Saquon Barkley, Giants, ($6,500DK/$6,000FD):

The verdict is still out on this one but I think that week three is going to be the week that everyone decides to roster Saquon. While his production was underwhelming, his snap share went from 48% to 84% between week one and week two, he gets several extra days of rest playing last Thursday, and the Washington Football Team has held both the Chargers and Giants running backs to under 100 yards in the first two weeks. While the Falcons did reasonably well against the Bucs there are two differences. First, Saquon is infinitely more talented than Ronald Jones or Leonard Fournette. Second, and more importantly, if you listened to our conversation about Dean Pees’s Falcons defense in week one, you know that it involves a ton of secondary blitzes, and how that can be attacked by mobile quarterbacks. Once a running QB burns Pees, he will account for it, leaving the second level wide open for a running back to break free. Barkley is too big for a safety, too fast for a linebacker. This is going to be fun. But sadly I do not think we can get him at low ownership. I hope I’m wrong.

Also Consider: Dalvin Cook (or Mattison if Cook is out), Ty’Son Williams, Austin Ekeler

GPP:

Joe Mixon, Bengals, ($6,300DK/$6,700FD):

When it comes to running backs, especially in the modern era of football where shared backfields are the norm, volume is key, and nobody outside of Derrick Henry has more touches than the 49 of Joe Mixon through two weeks. While the Steelers defense is solid as ever Defensive end Carlos Davis and Linebacker Alex Highsmith have both missed practice this week and TJ Watt has been limited with a groin issue, giving us a sneaky opportunity for Mixon to break off some chunk plays at what is looking like depressed ownership. We saw last week against the Bears that Cincy is going to lean on the running game regardless of the game script or defensive strength. And with Big Ben and Dionte Hightower injured to go along with that horrid offensive front of the Steelers the Bengals should not find themselves in a position where they will need to completely abandon the run.

D’Andre Swift, Lions, ($5,800DK/$7,400FD):

At first, glance when you look at the Raven’s defense it looks pretty clear that the one strength they may have is slowing the run and the way to attack them is with the tight ends up the seams. While it is true that tight end coverage has been a huge issue, the underlying reason for it is also the reason that I want to roster Swift in GPP’s. The linebackers are failing terribly in pass coverage responsibilities. Malik Harrison and Patrick Queen have looked especially bad, seemingly forgetting their responsibilities multiple times a drive and leaving huge holes for running backs, full back, and tight ends to attack for huge gains. Swift is not giving us much in terms of rushing volume but his volume in the passing games gives him enormous upside this week in a game total of over 50. As always with him before rostering, check out his practice participation since he is still dealing with a groin issue.

Javonte Williams, Broncos, ($4,900DK/$5,800FD):

My final Running Back DFS play is none other than Javonte Williams. Yes, he ended up burning us last week but I am going right back to the well this week. The game total is pathetic against the Jets at 41 points but the implied total for the Broncos is 25.5 and Denver is a huge favorite. Two things stood out last week. First, Williams was close on three separate occasions to breaking loose for huge plays including two that could have been touchdowns. Second, and most importantly for this game 9 of Williams’s 13 carries last week and 21 of his 27 carries overall have come when the Broncos are tied or ahead. The Broncos should get a few extra short-field opportunities and if you have not seen this guy run yet, please go look. He looks incredible and will be taking over the lion’s share of the opportunities from Melvin Gordon sooner rather than later.

Also Consider: Chase Edmonds, Nick Chubb, Jonathan Taylor

It is time folks and I wish you all great success in in 2021 and beyond and our WDS: Week 3 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 9.26 helps you towards your goals. It is time to start digging into DFS and make sure that we have our processes in place for a successful 2021 NFL campaign. If you have any questions about the Running Back DFS Breakdown, I will be available in the WinDaily Discord chat. Don’t forget to subscribe to the WinDaily Youtube channel and follow me @stoweby and @WinDailySports on Twitter to stay current and up to date on all of our fresh new content!

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We are here ladies and gentlemen! Week 2 is upon us and we have loads of content coming out over the next few days to help you take down your GPP’s and cash in your 50/50’s and Double-Ups. Be sure to hop in discord to get all of the updated information leading up to the first kick. When you have time, be sure to check out the data driven article that Jared put out reviewing week one, we will referenced it heavily for the targets and touches livestream and it provides needed data for this weeks slate. I will not waste a ton of your time here as I know what you are here for so enjoy the WDS: Week 2 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 9.19

I am going to put this at the top of my articles until the status quo changes. If you want to play Christian McCaffrey and can afford him, go for it. His floor/ceiling combination is unmatched from week to week. This just saves me a few minutes for every Running Back DFS Breakdown just stating the obvious.

***Note to all new players: Any players that may list in cash are viable options for GPP play. Just understand that Cash plays are likely to have higher ownership.***

I will add ownership percentages to the article later in the week. Those numbers do not really paint a clear picture until Friday. Plays may adjust due to those numbers so be sure to check back. I’ll update accordingly.

GPP:

Nick Chubb, Browns, ($7,800DK/$8,400FD) 7% OWN:

I thought that Chubb was going to be the big chalk this week in cash games due to talent and matchup. But everything points to 6-8% of rosters having him so I LOVE him for GPP.

Urban Meyer looked lost in his head coaching debut. Choosing to throw the ball 51 times against the worst running defense in the league even though Carlos Hyde averaged 4.9 YPC and James Robinson averaged 5.0. The Browns will not make that same mistake and as far as pure running backs go there is arguably no one better than Chubb. I know that some have a concern with Hunt taking targets and touches but there is no reason to be. He is going to go ham on the Texans this week.

David Montgomery, Bears, ($6,100DK/$7,300):

I am thinking this one ends up in the cash category but I’m waiting on ownership info to come out before moving. After watching the replay of the Bears/Rams I can find no smart reason for why Nagy was taking Monty off of the field for Damien Williams. Why take a guy who is ripping off 8+ yard carries the entire game for anything other than needing a breather for a play? Why has Williams randomly starting drives? Why in God’s name are you running end arounds with Marquis Goodwin? Why do you not utilize play action when you have David Montgomery running the ball? Make no mistake, Nagy’s job is on the line in the coming weeks and if he continues to make these mistakes he will no longer be a part of the Bears organization, and year in and year out Cincy’s defenses allows over 5 yards per carry so doing anything besides handing Monty the ball 25 times right up the middle will tell you all you need to know about his future. Montgomery has been nothing short of a revelation over the last eight games and he somehow looks faster, stronger, and has better vision than at any point in his career.

Damien Harris, Patriots, ($5,400DK/$6,200FD) 7% OWN:

I know he coughed up a fumble but I do not see Bill benching their best running back for a single indiscretion and the coaching staff has already voiced their confidence in his ability to “step up” . No better place to step up than an opportunity against a Jets defense that has been bottom five in every measurable category for almost a decade. He lacks receiving upside but has that ever stopped us from playing guys like Derrick Henry or Nick Chubb? If he gets 20-25 carries it will largely come out even in the end. 160 yards rushing is just as good as 100 yards rushing and 3 grabs for 30 yards.

Also Consider: Derrick Henry, Miles Sanders

Cash:

Chris Carson, Seahawks, ($6,100DK/ $6,700FD) 18% OWN:

I’m thinking that some of you have noticed something about several of my plays this week. When it comes to GPP’s this week something that I am planning to do is target these high total games. While people flock to the receivers and tight ends I am completely comfortable taking a back like Carson due to his ability to catch out of the backfield. The Titan’s defense struggled to stop every facet of the Cardinals offense in week one and the Seahawks are arguably better in every facet. When I first saw that Seattle kept five running backs on the roster going into the first week I was a little worried but those concerns were completely unwarranted as Carson carried the ball 16 times for 93 yards, caught all three of his targets for 26 yards, and accounted for 78% of the running back snaps. While everyone is (justifiably) stacking the receivers, take a lineup or two and replace your second receiver with Carson and reap the benefit.

Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys, ($6,200/$7,500) 18% OWN

The ownership has heavily skewed towards Zeke as chalk, so while he is no longer a GPP play everything that I saw last week still remains, only now I can recommend as cash only.

One thing stood out to me when I gave the game another watch. Only four running plays of the 77 offensive snaps were designed to take place inside the numbers. Even though Zeke is trimmed down a bit, Pollard is better suited to that style, so it made it appear that Pollard was the guy even though Elliot played 84% of the snaps compared to 24% for Tony. The Bucs were thin defensively in the secondary and the Cowboys were (successfully) beating them out there all night. At the same time, Zeke was tasked with protecting Dak with no Zack Martin on the O-Line and he did a phenomenal job as the Cowboys only allowed ONE sack. Sunday, Martin will be back in action so that need will not be there. The Chargers may have some pieces on defense, but nowhere near the caliber of Tampa, especially up front. Even with Fitzpatrick’s hip injury, Gibson was still producing and ripping off chunk plays with interior runs. While everyone is ready to write Elliott off I am going to lean into him having a huge game. I just think the echo chamber surrounding him has reached an extreme and we get 2019 Zeke in week two.

Austin Ekeler, Chargers, ($7,300DK/$7,000FD)

My final selection for my running back DFS breakdown in none other than Austin Ekeler. It was a little strange seeing him get zero targets in week one but I am willing to chalk that up to a tough Washington defense, the fact that the Chargers did not get him in reps in the preseason, and a leg injury that they wanted to be cautious with. With a 55 point total and a soft Dallas defense, this is shaping up to be a smash spot for Austin. The best part about it is that if you are going to stack this game you are not sacrificing upside due to what should be a heavy utilization in the passing game. Even without a single target in week one he got 15 touches and scored a touchdown giving me a ton of optimism about his upside on Sunday.

Also Consider: Alvin Kamara, Joe Mixon, Najee Harris

It is time folks and I wish you all great success in in 2021 and beyond and our WDS: Week 2 NFL Running Back DFS Breakdown 9.19 helps you towards your goals. It is time to start digging into DFS and make sure that we have our processes in place for a successful 2021 NFL campaign. If you have any questions about the Running Back DFS Breakdown, I will be available in the WinDaily Discord chat. Don’t forget to subscribe to the WinDaily Youtube channel and follow me @stoweby and @WinDailySports on Twitter to stay current and up to date on all of our fresh new content!

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The NFL DFS season begins with the Thursday night showdown, and we’ve got the breakdown to help you win big money in the first Week 1 NFL DFS contests!

A Refresher on Single-Game Showdowns

DraftKings calls them “Showdowns,” and FanDuel calls them “Single-Game Contests,” but the gist is that we need to break down a single game and be aware of the narratives, opportunities and game theory techniques to help drive our success.

My picks will focus almost exclusively on finding GPP-winning combinations that have a chance at taking down the contests you’re entering, be they single-entry or MME. While we can’t cover all the possible combos or provide full lineups, the goal here is to give you the tools to win and highlight some names that will give you leverage.

If I enter five lineups in a large-field GPP, at least three of those lineups will focus on the most likely game outcome (based on Vegas odds, props and totals), with one or two contrarian builds. As we know, late-breaking news can have a significant effect on full slates, and that’s just amplified with single-game contests. If you have any questions leading up to lock, please consult our NFL DFS experts in Discord.

Let’s get to the game!

Week 1 NFL DFS MVP candidates (1.5x points)

Some notes on the differences between MVP on FanDuel and DraftKings: The 1.5x point boost on FD comes with no salary penalty, while and DK also bumps the salary to 1.5x – a crucial factor in deciding who we can and cannot afford on both sites. We can use this to our advantage on FD by occasionally targeting non-QBs to establish more variance and more unique lineups, and on DK it allows us to build more hearty overall stacks when we punt the MVP position with a cheap but high-upside player.

Chalk: Tom Brady (FD $16,000, DK $16,800)

Pivot: Dak Prescott (FD $15,500, DK $15,600)

Contrarian #1: Mike Evans (FD $13,000, DK $13,800)

Contrarian #2: CeeDee Lamb (FD $10,000, DK $12,300)

Contrarian #3: Ronald Jones (FD $9,500, DK $7,500)

I’m leaning toward using the chalky Tom Brady as my MVP on FanDuel based on the lack of salary multiplier and his propensity to both spread it around and not really stop running up the score. I may find a different route on DraftKings.

Tampa Bay notes: Getting some combination of Brady, Evans and Jones is probably the safest way to approach this offense. If you’re going to play the Bucs DST, and that’s not a terrible strategy for a few GPPs then it’s probably important you use one or more Bucs RBs. Jones is technically the lead back, but Leonard Fournette is still an explosive player with sneaky value if Jones isn’t getting it done. Chris Godwin was nursing a hamstring injury, and he’s actually been left off the final injury report after being limited Tuesday, but I’m most interested in the matchup nightmare that Evans presents for the Cowboys. Aside from Brady, he has the biggest upside. If Godwin sits, we can consider Antonio Brown, who’s listed as questionable but has been trending up in recent weeks as someone finally gelling with the Bucs system and Brady.

Dallas notes: With the absence of OL Zack Martin due to COVID and the Buccaneers solid rush defense, I’m a little less interested in Ezekiel Elliott. I’ll prioritize Prescott/Lamb and either Michael Gallup (with Bucs safety Jordan Whitehead on the shelf for Week 1), but Amari Cooper remains in play for GPPs. Blake Jarwin offers some value at $5,200 on DK, but he’s more of a GPP play as well given how well the Bucs LBS defend that territory and the red zone, where he gets most of his looks.

Week 1 NFL DFS Final thoughts (and some DOs and DON’Ts)

Remember to build your team based on a Week 1 NFL DFS narrative that makes sense.

DO: Build a trio (or quartet) of offensive weapons for a team that makes sense together

DON’T: Get cute with the sub $1K players in this one. Both offenses should be approaching full strength and unless we get breaking news close to lock, there’s not much in that range we can use.

DO: Use the projected team totals to shade one way or the other with your selections.

DON’T: Use both kickers and defenses. There are some showdowns where using that strategy can help find the magic mix, but this Thursday night isn’t that night.

Now that we’ve established some Week 1 NFL DFS narratives and MVP candidates, the best way to round out this piece is with a list of my favorite options in descending order, based on overall value (a combo of salary and projected points):

  1. Tom Brady
  2. Dak Prescott
  3. Mike Evans
  4. CeeDee Lamb
  5. Ronald Jones
  6. Chris Godwin
  7. Michael Gallup
  8. Ezekiel Elliott
  9. Amari Cooper
  10.  Bucs DST
  11.  Antonio Brown
  12.  Leonard Fournette
  13.  Rob Gronkowski
  14.  Blake Jarwin
  15.  Giovani Bernard
  16.  Tony Pollard
  17.  O.J. Howard
  18.  Ryan Succop
  19.  Greg Zuerlein
  20.  Cowboys DST
  21.  Cameron Brate

Don’t forget to read the rest of WinDaily’s excellent football articles this week as you prep for Week1 action!

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