2022 Hall of Fame Game DFS Showdown


We hope you enjoy this FREE article preview! In order to access our other articles and content, including livestreams, projections and rankings, stat analysis and more, be sure to sign up today. We are here to help you #ScoreMore Fantasy Points!

2022 Hall of Fame Game DFS Showdown

Are you ready for some (preseason DFS) football?! It’s here, and it’s glorious. The Hall of Fame Game is tonight, and it kicks off one of my favorite times of the year — Preseason DFS Season.

General Preseason Showdown Strategy
  • The overarching key is to do your best to highlight which players will be playing the most snaps. This can be gleaned by researching depth chart scarcity, coachspeak/press conferences, injury news or beat reports.

  • The only position you can roster that will score fantasy points for the entire game is DST. With all other position players having their playing time limited to anywhere from a series to a half, DST becomes a key cog in roster construction. Despite the fact DSTs don’t normally end up as the highest scoring position on a normal slate, they can on a preseason slate. The ability for quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, and tight ends to outscore DSTs is neutralized in preseason by only playing a portion of the game. Don’t be afraid to roster both DSTs in a lineup or in the captain spot — in fact, it’s encouraged.

  • Don’t worry about negative correlation in preseason. QB v. opposing defense, too many WRs from the same team, or two running backs from the same team don’t carry the negative impact they would in the regular season. Often, they won’t eat into each other’s production because they won’t be on the field at the same time, anyway.

  • The one correlation that does matter is trying to pinpoint which quarterbacks will be paired up with which skill players. It’s often arbitrary and unpredictable, but there are times when a unit will play all their snaps together. That increases your ceiling by having the QB in the same lineup as the RB/WR/TE he has the potential to throw touchdown passes to.

  • Prioritize athletic pass-catchers. Since playing time is limited, target positions and players that can hit a ceiling in one or two plays. This is usually going to be wide receivers. Though running backs are in play, it’s unlikely you get a high-volume game where a runner grinds out the 100-yard bonus on 20 carries. When you do roster running backs and tight ends, it’s important to roster the ones that have pass-catching roles.

Hall of Fame Game Strategy

There is really no easy way to go about determining which players will be on the field for the Hall of Fame Game. There exists a normal pattern of coaching behavior for the preseason in terms of playing time, but it’s sort of thrown out the window for this first game because it’s an extra game added on top of the usual preseason schedule. The Jags and Raiders will play four, instead of three, exhibition games before the regular season.

Over the past week or so, I’ve prepared for this slate by reading beat writer columns, combing twitter for beat writer tweets and replies, and also listening to Raiders/Jaguars podcasts. As with any DFS slate we’ll need a little luck, but I do think knowing who has been performing well in camp, who the coaches are fond of or may want to see more of, and who has been banged up and may not play is a pretty big advantage.

Defense/Special Teams

As I mentioned above, it can’t be overstated how important it is to prioritize defenses in your lineups for the showdown slates in preseason. They are the only two buttons you can click in which you are guaranteed they’ll be on the field for the entire game. I’ll have a large percentage of my lineups including both defenses and I’ll also be using them in the captain spot.



Trevor Lawrence and CJ Beathard are not playing, according to HC Doug Pederson.

  • Jake Luton — Trevor Lawrence and CJ Beathard will not play in this game. That leaves a good chunk of playing time for Luton. Beat reports have mentioned that he looks solid in camp. His only competition at the position is Kyle Slotter who has been on the team for 10 days. I would guess he plays definitely the first half and more likely three quarters.

  • Kyle Sloter — Sloter signed with the Jags on July 24. That doesn’t bode well for a ton of playing time, though he has earned some cred in the preseason in previous seasons. He can definitely make plays with limited opportunities. He will definitely be in my player pool, but snaps are king and it looks as though Luton will be getting the majority.

Running Back

Travis Etienne and James Robinson will not play in the game, according to HC Doug Pederson.

  • Snoop Conner — Snoop should be featured early in this game. He was a really solid player at Ole Miss and has pass-catching chops. He can be explosive and that is the archetype of player we want to target in the preseason, one that can do a lot on just a few touches. He should be an integral part of your player pool.

  • Ryquell Armstead — Armstead split first-team work with Conner in the absence of Etienne and Robinson at practice. I’ve been around long enough to know that Armstead is really good leverage on Conner. All the buzz and reports are about seeing Conner on Thursday because he’s an unknown commodity at this point, but Armstead will probably get just as many touches.

  • Mekhi Sargent — Will most likely get mop up duty. He can be sprinkled into lineups if you are mass-multi-entering. He’s also a solid pass-catcher and pairing him with Sloter may lead to a unique construction.

  • Nate Cottrell — Mainly a special teamer. Though it isn’t unheard of for special teamers to get time at their natural offensive position in the preseason, Cottrell will probably be limited to very few snaps.

Wide Receiver
  • Tim Jones — The third and least known Jones of the Jaguars’ WR group has shined during camp. He appears ahead of veteran Jamal Agnew on the initial depth chart. He has worked with Trevor Lawrence on the first team and has also kicked into the slot when Luton is on the field. You have the green light to play Jones on Thursday.

  • Lujuan Winningham — A wide receiver out of Central Arkansas who has been mentioned on a lot of the podcasts I listened to as a player who’s been standing out. Making plays in training camp doesn’t always translate to shining in the actual game, but it could lead to him being given more opportunities to prove himself.

  • Jeff Cotton Jr. — Cotton has made a ton of plays in camp. He has even gotten run with the ones as a reward for his solid play. He’ll rotate in with the third and fourth unit. I think you can pair him with either quarterback as I think he’ll play across units.

  • Kevin Austin — the Jaguars were quick to scoop the Notre Dame product up after the draft, but unfortunately all reports indicate that he has been mediocre at best in camp. I still think he’ll get solid run in this game to show if he can produce on the field. He’s a very raw player that is athletic, but not technical when it comes to the WR position.

  • Christian Kirk, Marvin Jones, and Zay Jones — The word is that “some starters will play” for the Jaguars. Normally in the first preseason game that means the first drive and they’re done. The crux of the matter here is that if Luton leads the Jags down field for an opening drive touchdown and someone like Zay Jones catches a 30-yard touchdown, he will almost assuredly be in the optimal lineup despite only playing 5-7 snaps. So my advice here is to mix in starters a tiny bit, but don’t overdo it because it’s more likely they score zero fantasy points than score a touchdown.

  • Laquon Treadwell, Laviska Shenault, and Jamal Agnew — These three are in a similar bucket to the starters. They are vets that have been in the league and with the Jags for some time. Pederson has mentioned he wants the younger guys to get the most time. ‘Viska and Agnew have been banged up this week, so it may be straight rest for them. We won’t know beforehand because there are no mandated injury reports in preseason. It’s probably best to use these guys sparingly if at all.

  • Ryan McDaniel, Willie Johnson — These guys will most likely enter the game late if at all. They should be paired with Kyle Sloter.

Tight End
  • Evan Engram, Dan Arnold, and Chris Manhertz — These guys are the vets of the Jaguars. Engram probably won’t see much more than a series, while Arnold and Manhertz could play a bit more. Arnold has reportedly looked the best of the group. Given that these guys are experienced, I think we could see them used lightly.

  • Luke Farrell and Gerritt Prince — These two have made the most noise in camp, plus they are younger players that Pederson expressed interest in getting them on the field. They would be my leans at the position. There are so many tight ends on the roster, it’s probably best to shy away from slotting them in too often.


  • Derek Carr — Even if Carr does get in the game, it will be for a series, which isn’t enough to get much done in terms of fantasy points.

  • Jarrett Stidham, Nick Mullens, Chase Garbers —- Josh McDaniels has given little indication as to what the playing time will be for these three. McDaniels knows what he has in Stidham from his time at the Patriots, so I could see him playing only a quarter or so. There are a few scenarios that can happen: 1) They all get somewhat equal time. 2) Stidham and Mullens get a quarter and Garbers plays the second half. 3) Stidham plays more than we think and Mullens/Garber play one quarter a piece in the second half. 4) Stidham gets a few series, Mullen plays a ton in the middle, and Garbers gets a few series at the end. There really is no way of knowing. So mix in these guys throughout your lineups. Try to pair them with the pass-catchers that will be in the game at the same time.

Running Back
  • Josh Jacobs and Kenyan Drake — Along the same lines of Carr. We have no official word on playing time, but it’s unlikely they’d play more than the first series if anything. Could Kenyan Drake break a 60-yard run on the third play of the game and be in the optimal lineup? Sure, but we are playing the percentages here. These two shouldn’t really be on your radar for the HOF game.

  • Brandon Bolden — Bolden is listed third on the depth chart, but is more of a special teamer. It’s possible he gets some run, but I doubt it. I want to focus more on the young backs and not the proven vets.

  • Zamir White and Brittain Brown — These are the two players I’m most excited about. However, there is a bit of a conundrum. They’ve both been banged up throughout the last week and have missed practices. White is a fourth-round pick, so I think we have to monitor his status because he’s likely part of the team’s future. And a preseason game, especially the first of the year, isn’t all that important. Brown definitely needs to prove himself and can’t really afford to miss time. Either way, monitor the situation leading up to kickoff.

  • Ameer Abdullah — Roster bubble guy who will likely be used on special teams if he does make the team. It’s difficult to say whether he plays a lot, but I lean to the expectation we’ll see him in this HOF game, at least a little bit. His playing time could hinge on whether White and Brown are active, so it’s worth monitoring.

  • Austin Walter — Former NY Jet who got run in the regular season towards the end of 2021, Walter was signed just about a week ago. This seems to be a classic camp body signing with some of the guys on the roster at RB nicked up. We’ve seen guys like this get a good amount of run late in preseason games. His prospects get an uptick depending on who is dressed for the game. We have to keep an eye on twitter for beat reports.

  • Jakob Johnson — Fullback, but it’s not uncommon to see the position get carries in an exhibition contest. He’s a really deep play whom I wouldn’t go crazy rostering. But if you’re creating 20+ lineups, you can have a smattering.

Wide Receiver

  • Davante Adams and Hunter Renfrow — Similar to the other starters, a series at the very most, but could be out entirely. These aren’t the type of guys we roster in the early preseason games.

  • Mack Hollins, Keelan Cole, and Demarcus Robinson — Veterans who will by vying for the WR3 role. I think they’ll play with Stidham and the “first unit” for as long as McDaniels leaves them out there. It makes sense to use these guys with Stidham

  • Tyron Johnson — Has gotten the most buzz of any of the Raiders receivers in camp. Beats have commented on his speed and playmaking ability. I think he’ll get in across the first and second units so he makes sense with Stidham or Mullens. He’ll most likely be my most clicked-on WR. They call him T-Billy and he’s a former Jaguar, so that’s neat.

  • Isaiah Zuber — I was a big fan of his skill set at Kansas State. A former New England Patriot and Houston Gambler (USFL), Zuber and Chase Garbers will most likely get run at the same time. He’s part of the back half of the Raiders’ WR depth chart who should get good run in the second half.

  • DJ Turner, Jordan Veasey, Justin Hall — These three make up the rest of the depth chart. They’ll probably get in the game in the second half with Mullen and Garbers. Their playing time is somewhat of a mystery. There really haven’t been beat reports that help me separate them in terms of a camp standout or coach favorite.

Tight Ends
  • Darren Waller and Foster Moreau — Unlikely we see Waller and Moreau would probably be treated like a starter and only see a series if he enters the game at all.

  • Nick Bowers — Bowers was the TE3 on the Raiders last year, I’d expect him to be the tight end in the game during the first half with Stidham and potentially Mullens. As I’ve mentioned before, if we don’t have to roster tight ends (like on showdown slates) we shouldn’t prioritize them.

  • Jacob Hollister and Jesper Horsted — Both preseason favorites in years past, they should be in the game and vying to make the roster in the late first half and beyond. Hollister has some serious NFL experience, which could mean he bullies his way around the field and gets some fantasy points or he’s pulled quick, since McDaniels is familiar with him. I like them both, but the TE position in general for this slate is meh.

  • Cole Fotheringham — If you never watched the Utah Utes, you’d probably think this guy was a create-a-player on Madden, but he’s real and he’s probably not going to play much on Thursday. Some run late in the game is likely, but as we say, play the percentages.

  • Daniel Carlson — Unlike the Jags who have two kickers in camp battling it out, Carlson will kick the whole game for the Raiders. That makes him viable on this slate. Two field goals and an extra point or two and he’s probably landing in the optimal lineup. The only issue that can arise is that coaching staffs could try screwy stuff, like always going for it to practice those 4th-down situations.

Pat began playing fantasy football 20 years ago. In 2012 he started the fantasy football site FantasyCouncil.com which opened the door for him to become a DFS contributor at several sites and is the newest DFS Contributor for Fantasy Points.