2023 Week 16 DFS Early Look


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2023 Week 16 DFS Early Look

Week 15 of the NFL regular season just wrapped up, and that means Week 16 is just around the corner. As my readers likely know, DFS is the best version of fantasy football, and since DraftKings and FanDuel have released their Week 16 prices, it’s time to track down the obvious values and best plays.

Here are the plays that jumped out to me for Week 16 DFS.

Justin Fields, QB, Chicago Bears (VS. ARI)

DraftKings: $7,100 (QB3) | FanDuel: $8,300 (QB2)

Fields didn’t get a chance to show off his nuclear fantasy upside in Week 15, but he draws a far more appealing matchup this week. Arizona is the 8th-softest schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing QBs this season (+1.8 FPG), and Fields has averaged 25.4 DraftKings FPG and 0.74 fantasy points per dropback in top-10 schedule-adjusted matchups. Those marks would both rank 1st among all QBs over the full season, and with Fields still $600 cheaper than his Week 1 DraftKings price tag, he’s shaping up as one of the strongest QB values of the slate.

Joe Flacco, QB, Cleveland Browns (@ HOU)

DraftKings: $5,500 (QB13) | FanDuel: $7,100 (QB11)

Flacco has made three starts this season, and he’s clearly still #Elite, because he’s leading the NFL in passing YPG (313.0) while ranking as the QB3 by DraftKings FPG (21.8). A big part of Flacco’s fantasy efficacy has come from him being hyper-aggressive and throwing the ball downfield. 38% of Flacco’s pass attempts have traveled over 10 air yards, which is the 3rd-highest rate among all QBs. And the Browns have leaned into this aggressiveness – prior to Flacco taking over, Cleveland’s pass rate over expectation (PROE) was just -2.5% (5th-lowest). But over the last three weeks with Flacco, that number has ballooned to +6.2% (5th-highest). It only took the addition of Joe Flacco for the Browns to truly become a pass-first offense.

This week, Flacco draws the Texans in a game with a semi-encouraging total (40.5). But what’s far more encouraging is the on-paper matchup – Houston ranks as the 6th-softest schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing QBs (+2.9 FPG). I’d expect Flacco to be one of the more popular ways to punt QB this week, granted his fantasy stock does take a hit with no CJ Stroud in this game.

De’Von Achane and Raheem Mostert, RBs, Miami Dolphins (VS. DAL)

Looking through Week 16 games totals yields one very clear conclusion – the Dallas at Miami game is easily the best offensive environment of the slate (51.5). So, we are going to want to attack that game for DFS.

And what better area to attack than the Miami backfield – which has been nearly 14% more productive than the 2nd-best backfield in fantasy football this season.

Raheem Mostert has averaged 22.2 DraftKings FPG in the nine games Miami has scored 25 or more points – which easily ranks 1st among slate-eligible RBs over the full season. And De’Von Achane has averaged 26.1 DraftKings FPG in the six games he’s earned multiple rush attempts. Of course, that also easily leads all slate-eligible RBs if extrapolated over the full season.

Recent usage certainly favors Mostert. He’s earned a 61% snap share and 53% of backfield usage over the last two weeks, including a 100% snap share inside the 10 over that stretch. So, Mostert will be more popular – probably one of the highest-owned RBs of the slate – but the reality is both players have absolutely nuclear upside in this outstanding scoring environment. So both Miami RBs are great tournament plays this week.

Zack Moss, RB, Indianapolis Colts (@ ATL)

DraftKings: $6,500 (RB10) | FanDuel: $6,600 (RB15)

Moss suffered a shoulder injury in Week 15, but he’s already said he’s planning on playing Sunday against Atlanta. In his five healthy games without Jonathan Taylor, Moss has averaged an 86% snap share, a 75% share of backfield rush attempts, and 18.7 XFP/G. Over the full season, those numbers would rank 1st, 2nd, and 4th among all RBs.

Once again, we are faced with Zack Moss being one of the best values – and subsequently – one of the most popular plays at any position in Week 16. He also draws a top-10 schedule-adjusted matchup, but I wouldn’t call Moss a free square, as we’ve seen him fail to eclipse double-digit DraftKings points in 60% of his bell cow games this season. If you become concerned about massive ownership, fading Moss in tournaments is a good way to get different.

Devin Singletary, RB, Houston Texans (VS. CLE)

DraftKings: $5,500 (RB19) | FanDuel: $6,200 (RB20)

In Week 15, Singletary was the RB2 by XFP (25.5), the RB6 by fantasy points scored (24.0), the RB5 by snap share (76%), and the RB11 by route share (48%). If Singletary is looking at mid-range RB1 usage for the remainder of the season, then it’s a complete mystery why he’s priced as a mid-to low-end RB2 on both DFS sites for Week 16.

Sure, Cleveland is a below-average schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing RBs, but only barely so since Week 7. And, crucially, Houston should get CJ Stroud back this week, which raises the production floor of the entire offense – especially so for the team’s bell cow in Devin Singletary. Expect Singletary to draw plenty of ownership this week as a top value in one of the best games of the 1 PM window.

Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings (VS. DET)

DraftKings: $8,100 (WR4) | FanDuel: $9,200 (WR3)

Jefferson’s return from IR has been a bit overshadowed by huge fantasy outings on Saturday from Ty Chandler and Jordan Addison, but Jefferson did lead Minnesota in XFP (20.0) in their Week 15 loss to Cincinnati. He hasn’t had a blowup game yet, but Jefferson is healthy and back to alpha WR1 status.

And when was the last time we got to roster Jefferson for just $8,100 on DraftKings? I can answer that question, it was Week 1… of last season. Jefferson’s average DraftKings price over his last 25 healthy games is nearly $9,000 – meaning we are getting a $900 discount on one of the best WRs in football. It gets better – Detroit has been a top-5 schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing outside WRs since Week 10, and this game features the 2nd-highest total of the main slate (46.5). Jefferson hasn’t had a statement game since returning from IR, but Week 16 is shaping up as one.

Garrett Wilson, WR, New York Jets (VS. WAS)

DraftKings: $5,800 (WR17) | FanDuel: $7,000 (WR15)

Garrett Wilson is the WR3 by XFP/G (18.5) since Week 8, but he’s fallen way under expectation – largely because of brutal QB play. While we can’t bank on Wilson’s QB play improving anytime soon, we can probably still bet on an overall improvement in efficiency for the talented WR in an outstanding matchup this week.

Washington ranks as the single-softest schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing WRs this season (+10.6 FPG). 12 different players have gone over 90 receiving yards against Washington, and 10 of those players ran the majority of their routes on the outside, just like Garrett Wilson. It’s rare we get a chance to roster a WR with high-end WR1 volume at a sub-$6,000 salary on DraftKings, especially in the best possible matchup. Even league-worst QB play may not be able to slow down Wilson in Week 16.

David Njoku, TE, Cleveland Browns (@ HOU)

DraftKings: $5,300 (TE5) | FanDuel: $6,600 (TE4)

Njoku has been on an incredible tear since Week 10, earning +13 more targets than the next-closest TE over that stretch, and easily pacing the position in XFP/G (18.3) – posting usage that’s 20% better than the next-closest TE.

Cleveland has been right there as the league’s most productive passing attack since Joe Flacco took over, and the Browns’ leaning more into a pass-happy approach only raises Njoku’s floor and ceiling. This Sunday, Njoku draws a Houston defense that’s been the 5th-softest schedule-adjusted matchup for opposing TEs since Week 7. This is an early preview of the week ahead, but it still feels safe to declare Njoku one of the best TE plays of the Week 16 DFS slate.

Jake Tribbey is the 2022 FSWA Football Writer of the Year and the leading Spring Football expert in the fantasy industry. He is a lifelong football fan obsessed with extracting every edge possible from DFS, Best Ball, and player props/futures.