Week 8 MNF Showdown


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Week 8 MNF Showdown

General Rule for Creating Showdown/MVP Lineups
  1. Correlate with your Captain/MVP - Make sure you are creating a roster that makes sense with your 1.5x player.
  2. On DraftKings, lean RB/WR in the captain. Though QB can finish as the optimal captain, it’s often overused by the field relative to its success rate. When you are using a QB in the captain, I like to use a lot of his pass-catchers. Because the likely scenario if a QB ends up as the captain on DK is he spread his touchdowns around to multiple receivers and not one skill player had a ceiling game.
  3. On FanDuel the MVP spot doesn’t cost you 1.5x salary which means you’re just trying to get the highest scoring player in that spot. Contrary to DK, it’s often the QB because of the scoring system. I would lean QB/RB on FD, but there are always exceptions to the rule.
  4. Leave salary on the table - I’m not just talking about a few hundred. Don’t be afraid to leave a few thousand on the table. In a slate that has an extremely limited number of viable options, there is a much greater chance for lineup duplication. It may not seem like much of an issue, but it can decimate your expected value to put in lineups that are going to split with 500 other people.
  5. Multi-enter if you can. Single-game slates have so much variance that the first play of the game can take you completely out of contention if you only have one lineup. It’s best to build a bunch of lineups (you don’t have to max enter) that concentrates on different game scripts and a handful of different correlated captains.
  6. DST and Kickers, while not very exciting usually offer a solid floor for cheap. Especially in game scripts that go under expected point totals. I would only use at most two per lineup.
  7. When creating single-game lineups, the most important part is creating correlated lineups according to a projected game script, and not pinpointing the exact five or six players who will score the most fantasy points on the slate.


Mike Evans presents a great buy-low spot in this game. He would normally be one of the most owned Captains in this game, but coming off a two-week stretch in which his box score reads three catches for 47 yards, I think he’ll be under-owned in the 1.5x spot. I’m not too worried about individual matchups on a one-game slate because there aren’t 10 other players at his price point that could put up similar numbers as there would be on a main slate. Scotty Miller has been solid over the last two weeks, racking up an aDOT of 16 on average. He can be a slippery short route runner, but he also gets a couple of shots downfield as well. He’s cheap enough to be considered at Captain. Tom Brady will be a consideration as well, of course. He has a propensity to spread the ball out and take what’s open, so he can definitely be the optimal captain on DraftKings if he throws multiple touchdowns to multiple different receivers.

Daniel Jones’ rushing ability always puts him squarely in play as a captain or MVP, but this matchup has been brutal for opposing quarterbacks. Despite the Bucs allowing the least raw fantasy points to quarterbacks, I think we can take a shot with Jones in the captain and MVP. In his last two games, he’s rushed for over 160 yards combined. Even if he turns the ball over a few times, which is likely, he can make up for that in garbage time. I do like him more as a flex play, though I did have to list him in the captain section because he’s in play there. Wayne Gallman should see the vast majority of the Giants’ touches at running back with Devonta Freeman out. The Buccaneers allow a stingy 66 yards per game to running backs on the ground, but again it’s more about the receptions for Gallman, potentially in a fast-paced catch-up situation. He had 5 catches last week in relief of Freeman. Darius Slayton is the far and away top pick from the Giants’ side of the ball to be the pass-catching captain. He sports the most targets at 26 over the last four games, which accounts for 23% of targets and 48% of air yards in that time span. Considering the matchup and volume of the other offensive players, the other Giants’ pass-catchers have a probability of winding up as the 1.5x player higher than their projected ownership at the position.


Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette have a chance to end up as the optimal captain, but I think they’ll eat into each other’s workload enough that I’ll use them solely in the flex. Fournette seems to be the preferred pass-catcher, so he could work well in Brady stacks, while Jones probably has negative correlation with Brady as he gets the goal-line work. The Buccaneers DST makes sense with both of these running backs and also in general should be able to put up a pretty high floor if not a big ceiling game.

Rob Gronkowski has recorded 17+ DraftKings points in his last two games. Brady has started to target him a bit more in the last few games. It’s conceivable it took Gronk a few weeks to get acclimated to the speed of the game. The other ancillary pieces of the Buccaneers passing attack aren’t very intriguing. Tyler Johnson was going to be a consideration for me until I saw his price tag, which is pretty egregious on DraftKings. I’d rather take a shot on Cameron Brate to luckbox a touchdown.

The key to the slate will probably be hitting on which Giants’ ancillary pieces get the job done. Sterling Shepard, Golden Tate, Evan Engram all should be rotated through the flex spots. The reason I don’t love Shepard and Engram as captains is because they usually operate near the line of scrimmage, though I think they are playable sparingly if you are multi-entering a lot of lineups. Golden Tate is extremely cheap on DraftKings and it’s because he has played fewer snaps and seen fewer targets than the other three main pass-catchers. This is just anecdotal, but Tate is a hard-nosed guy and won’t back down to this Bucs’ defense. I like him at his current bargain salary. Shepard and Engram work best in lineups where you are stacking up the Buccaneers and counting on garbage time receptions.

As always, kickers are in play, but the Giants DST should be under-owned if you feel strongly about their prospects of turning Brady over. I could envision a slugfest in this game in which the Giants wind up in the optimal lineup. They’ve got a solid secondary and could get to the statue that is Tom Brady.

Lineup Starters

Captain/MVP: Tom Brady

Flex: Rob Gronkowski, Scotty Miller, Golden Tate

Captain/MVP: Daniel Jones

Flex: Darius Slayton, Tom Brady, Scotty Miller

Captain/MVP: Mike Evans

Flex: Tom Brady, Sterling Shepard, Leonard Fournette

Captain/MVP: Ronald Jones

Flex: Bucs DST, Evan Engram, Tom Brady

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.