Week 2 has come and gone, and hopefully we can leave the injury misfortune with it! On this slate, there are a lot of mispriced players that stick out right away, and I will be focusing mainly on those too good to pass up values.
This will be a source for you to get all the necessary information that you might not recognize quickly looking through the slate early in the week. The goal of this first look is to help leave no stone unturned before the week kicks off. Being able to project for different potential outcomes of players and games is a crucial trait to have as a DFS player. Here is my first look and deep dive on the Week 3 slate!
Game Script Targets
Eagles -6 (vs. CIN)
RB Miles Sanders (Phi)
WR Tyler Boyd (Cin)
Giants +4 (vs. SF)
A glaring opportunity that has opened up this week is in the 49ers backfield. Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman are very likely both out this week and they have accounted for 50 of the RB touches so far (82%). It is tough to project how the split will be handled, but it is a situation to monitor and see if we can get any insight from the beat reporters and Kyle Shanahan before the game. Based on how the pecking order has gone so far, McKinnon would likely be given the majority of the touches but his serious injuries over the past two seasons will limit his touch upside. However, 10+ touches for McKinnon could still return value based on how efficient he has been so far and his immense talent. He is getting 0.9 fantasy points/snap (3rd most for RBs). Jeff Wilson is an interesting pivot or GPP play if Shanahan is overly cautious with McKinnon. Rookie JaMycal Hasty is also another name to monitor as he could limit the upside of both if he does make this a committee.
Flipping the game script to the Giants side (4-point underdogs), Darius Slayton will be given more opportunities due to the injuries to Saquon Barkley and Sterling Shepard. Helping Slayton more and making this a much softer matchup against the 49ers, are the injuries Richard Sherman, Nick Bosa, and Arik Armstead. Chris Hogan was able to step in for the Jets this same matchup and post 6/75 on 8 targets. Slayton’s best game in 2019 came with Shepard out (10/121/2 on 15 targets).
Cardinals -6.0 (vs. DET)
RB Kenyan Drake (Ari)
Kenyan Drake is a similar play to Miles Sanders this week where it sets up to be a breakout game for him. The opportunity has been there as he is top 10 in snap share (67.8%), touches per game (20), and routes run among RBs (44). The matchups were not ideal the first two weeks against solid fronts in the 49ers and the Washington Football Team, but Aaron Jones broke the slate last week against this Lions defense. Jones got 116 yards after contact on the ground and an insane 2.07 fantasy points per touch (1.12 FPTS/Touch in 2019). Despite the soft matchup, Drake comes at a premium value. His salary ranks as the RB13 on DraftKings and RB15 on FanDuel.
QB Cam Newton (NE, vs. LV)
We were hoping to get some of what made Cam Newton such an elite fantasy player in his prime Panthers years, and we have gotten even more. In this past game, his 397 passing yards were the most he has had in a game since Week 2 in his rookie year. To go along with that, he has had his most designed runs in a two-game stretch (23). In comparison, Lamar Jackson averaged 9 designed runs per game last year. To top it off is the huge weekly upside he has with the red zone usage. It has been up there with the elite running backs only behind Derrick Henry, Christian McCaffrey, and Ezekiel Elliott (11 RZ carries). If you are looking to stack with Cam Newton, Julian Edelman has been the main focal point in the Patriots passing game. He has 50.3% of the team's air yards (2nd most at WR) and is averaging 4.07 yards per route (1st among WRs w/ >5 targets).
WR DK Metcalf (Sea, vs. Dal)
With Russell Wilson finally being unleashed and cooking this season, Metcalf’s floor and upside are much more viable on a week to week basis. It is a perfect game atmosphere against the Cowboys for that to continue and for Metcalf to approach his ceiling. Their coverage on the outside should be no match for him as rookie Trevon Diggs has struggled, allowing 60 yards in coverage in each of the first two games. He will also see Chidobe Awuzie which is another matchup that favors Metcalf. It will be a big pace upgrade for the Seahawks offense where the Cowboys have run the fastest pace offense this year. Reflecting the upside he and the rest of the offense has is their team total of 30 points (tied for most on slate). Getting exposure to this Seahawks offense will be crucial and getting a piece of Metcalf’s 48.6% air yard share (3rd highest for WRs) is the perfect way to do so.
RB Derrick Henry (Ten, vs. Min)
After getting burned by Henry last week in a smash spot, I’m not afraid to go right back to him in another great matchup vs the Vikings. Due the Vikings lackluster offense, their opponents’ offense have been able to run 80 and 74 plays in each of their games (league average ~67 plays). With that considered, Henry will have ample opportunities again to score fantasy points where through 2 games he has massively underperformed based on usage. He currently has the largest differential between his actual fantasy points and expected (XFP). That is mainly due to him not punching in any of his 13 red zone carries so far. Last season on 45 red zone attempts, he converted 13 TDs (28.9% TD success rate). He is a player I want to be on before the breakout.
WR Robert Woods (LAR, @BUF)
This one is rather obvious based on the matchup against Tre’Davious White. It is one of the worst matchups you can draw at WR as Tre’Davious White has been a black hole for fantasy wide receivers. Through two games this year, he is allowing four catches good for 37 yards (8 targets). Among CBs with greater than 50% of coverage snaps, Tre’Davious White has the second-fewest yards per snap allowed at 0.46. Expect the Rams to avoid attacking White in coverage.
RB Ezekiel Elliott (Dal, @Sea)
The Seahawks could be a pass funnel defense based on their ability to stop the run versus the pass so far. They have allowed the third-fewest yards per carry (3.0 YPC). On the other hand, they have allowed the most passing yards (831) and fantasy points to WRs (33.8 FPPG). If they have this same success versus the run game this week, the Cowboys are going to be forced to rely on the passing game more, which doesn’t fit Elliott's strengths and limits upside. The Seahawks slower pace of play will also give the Cowboys fewer chances on offense. Exposure to the Cowboys passing game is the preferred angle in this game.
QB Deshaun Watson (Hou, @Pit)
An offensive line that has struggled to give Deshaun Watson time gets no favors this week. The Steelers have had the best pass rush through two weeks. They have four separate defenders that rank in the Top 10 of total QB pressures (PFF). Watson has been under pressure the 3rd most of any QB through two weeks (PFF). Also, his top receiving option Will Fuller is battling through another hamstring injury that has limited him multiple times previously. I am fully avoiding Watson in this matchup.
Pace of Play
Seahawks (vs. DAL) - The Cowboys have run the fastest neutral game script pace and fastest pace with no specific game script.
Bears (@ ATL) - The Falcons have the 7th fastest pace of play in a neutral game script and 10th fastest with no specific game script. Plays into favor of the bottom 10 overall pace of play and neutral game script pace of play of the Bears.
49ers (@ NYG) - The Giants have quietly run a fast tempo in neutral game scripts. They ranked as the 2nd fastest neutral game script offense.
Cowboys (@ SEA) - The Seahawks have the 6th slowest pace and 6th slowest pace specifically in neutral game scripts. This does not play into the Cowboys’ fastest pace offense in the NFL.
Falcons (vs. CHI) - The Bears are bottom 10 in overall pace of play and neutral game script pace of play. This works against the Falcons consistently fast pace of play.
Projected Fast Pace Game:
Cardinals vs. Lions
Both the Lions and Cardinals have played at a Top 5 neutral game script pace.