Cover Photo Credit to Tim Heitman of USA Today Sports
Week 6 Primetime Showdown and Week 7 Thursday Night Football Results
For the first time in the year+ that I have tracked the Showdown Slate winning lineups, we had a captain kicker finally come through. It took 5 field goals, but Prater was awesome on Monday night, and you see the players in that lineup. The captain kicker is a rare thing that works, but when it does, you can build your lineup however you want with the salary flexibility.
Monday Night: New England @ NY Jets
- I will assume the 5-1 Patriots stack will be popular, and for good reason. They are Top 3 in DVOA vs both the pass and run, and are Top 10 vs every position. If you can find a way to play at least 2 Jets, you should give yourself the best chance to be unique.
- I am completely throwing out the first meeting of this game, for the Jets side. Sam Darnold was not the QB. I think the Patriots will look to take out Le'Veon Bell (9,200). I also don't see Sam Darnold (9,000) getting to 18 points to hit value. My favorite Jets play is probably going to be Jamison Crowder (7,000). He has seen 26 targets in two games that Darnold has started. On a full PPR site, I think he will have a decent floor and Golden Tate did in this spot a week ago (6/102/1). I'm not really looking at Robby Anderson (6,800), but don't hate DeMaryius Thomas (5,000) if you can't afford Crowder. If I had to play a punt play for the Jets, it would be Ryan Griffin (1,400) who has seen games of 3 and 4 targets with Darnold.
- The way most people will build this game is around the Patriots offense, and for good reason. This situation may be slightly more clearer than usual with Rex Burkhead and Josh Gordon ruled out. I expect Tom Brady (11,600) to be quite popular, as he was 88% owned in the showdown game against the Giants last week. The only question is can you afford him at captain. If you can, it's the safest route, as it's always a guess trying to figure out what non-Brady Patriot will lead the team in fantasy production.
- In the earlier game, Rex Burkhead led the running backs in production and had 7 targets. James White (7,400) didn't play in that game and Sony Michel (7,800) only had 9 rushes. Michel's carries have been trending upward recently and has led the team in snaps the past two games. White is the safer option, as he's been right around 13 fantasy points in every game, with Michel being better as of late. I don't mind playing both of them together, though a possible strategy would be to just play one, especially if playing one at captain. Brandon Bolden (3,200) has scored in back to back games with limited touches. A thin play but always viable in showdown.
- Without Josh Gordon, Julian Edleman (11,200) saw 15 targets a week ago and did see 10 targets in the first meeting. Unless something happens between the time I write this and kickoff, there doesn't appear to be any concerns about Edelman's injury. He's expensive, but may be best one to compete with Brady for highest raw points. Outside of Edelman, you are taking some fliers on the other options. Phillip Dorsett (6,600) is probably the WR2, but does feel a bit pricy. Jakobi Meyers (5,600) is likely to be the WR3 and cold be considered as the WR3. If wanting to get real cute, the Patriots are down to Ben Watson (4,400) and Eric Tomlinson (200) at tight end. Both are fine as last player into the lineup plays.
- The Patriots Defense (7,200) has been elite this season, so while it feels highly priced, I can't fault you for going there. Mike Nugent (3,800) is ok as a last player in. I have no interest in the Jets Defense (2,800) or Sam Ficken (3,600).
Patriots I will Consider Using: Brady, Michel, White, Edelman, Dorsett, Patriots D, Nugent, Bolden
Jets I will Consider Using: Crowder, Bell, Thomas, Griffin, Darnold
Sunday Night: Philadelphia @ Dallas
- This game a year ago on Sunday Night (in Philadelphia) was a stars and scrubs approach that won, as there were two players (Dalton Schultz and Jordan Matthews) who were on the winning lineup.
- For me, the way I want to attack this game is by starting with the Dallas passing attack. Surprisingly, the Eagles are only slightly below average in DVOA vs the Pass and Pass-Catchers. But, they are #2 against the run, so using Ezekiel Elliott (11,000) is a bit risky for my liking in a tough matchup. However, he was the captain in that primetime showdown lineup last year.
- Assuming Amari Cooper (10,200) is active, he's my favorite WR play for Dallas. We've seen him put up some monster games, especially at home, that I don't want to avoid him here. Whether he goes or not, I think Michael Gallup (9,600) and Randall Cobb (7,400) are also in play. Cobb would get a boost if Cooper misses, but he himself is questionable. This may even open up a chance to play Devin Smith (2,800), but that would only be if Cooper AND Cobb miss. Jason Witten (5,200) is fine as a last player into the lineup, as he will most likely get something like 4/45. A TD makes him a high probability of him being in the winning lineup. If you are playing mutliple lineups or absolutely need someone around 1,000, Blake Jarwin is seeing a snap share above 40%. You're just hoping he's the TD guy here.
- Dak Prescott (10,800) has not had the best performances lately, but he's also faced some good defenses in New Orleans, Green Bay, and the NY Jets (Jets are 16th DVOA overall). The production against Green Bay was in garbage time, but showed the upside he has, and the Eagles defense is not as good as the Packers. Prescott feels like someone you need to play.
- For Philadelphia, the pass game is also the way to attack Dallas. DeSean Jackson will miss another game, leaving Alshon Jeffery (8,800) and Nelson Agholor (4,600) as the plays. Agholor's targets are all over the place, but his upside at this price is hard to ignore in a potential shootout. Jeffery sees a lot of targets, but is TD dependent. If he gets a TD, he's in the winning lineup. If not, he doesn't get enough catches to make up for the lack of a touchdown. The only other WR seeing over 50% of the snaps here is Mack Hollins (400), but he's not seeing a lot of targets. However, at 400, it won't take much for him to hit value.
- Dallas ranks 29th against the TE, putting Zach Ertz (8,000) and Dallas Goedert (1,400) into play. Both have been seeing over 70% of the snaps the past two games, and Goedert did see 8 targets last game. He should attract some attention with that stat line, making Ertz a potential nice pay-up to be contrarian option. Carson Wentz (10,000) is squarely in play, as he is averaging 21 fantasy points a game. He should be one of the highest raw scorers, but may be hard to fit in with Dak and other options in this game.
- The running back situation is one I'm very interested in. Darren Sproles has been ruled out, leaving Miles Sanders (6,400) and Jordan Howard (6,200) as the only running backs that are expected to see snaps. Howard did outsnap Sanders in their last game, but they split two games back against GB. I think this more like that game, so using either back is fine. Sanders is better receiving option but Howard better TD option.
- Neither Kicker or Defense stuck out to me as someone you must play. I'm fine using Maher or Elliott, but I think there is enough upside with some of these value plays that the kicker isn't necessary.
Eagles Players to Consider: Sanders/Howard, Wentz, Agholor, Ertz/Goedert, Jeffery, Hollins
Cowboys Players to Consider: Prescott, Cooper, Gallup, Elliott, Cobb/Smith, Witten/Jarwin