Sunday, Feb 11th — Late
Bye Week:
Bears
Bengals
Bills
Broncos
Browns
Buccaneers
Cardinals
Chargers
Colts
Commanders
Cowboys
Dolphins
Eagles
Falcons
Giants
Jaguars
Jets
Lions
Packers
Panthers
Patriots
Raiders
Rams
Ravens
Saints
Seahawks
Steelers
Texans
Titans
Vikings

End Around 10.23

Hilow is a game theory expert (courses at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and Northwestern) and tournament champion who focuses on mid/high-stakes single-entry/three-entry max

MACRO SLATE VIEW::

This slate has a higher median game total than we have seen in quite some time, meaning the score required to ship GPPs is likely to also be higher than we have seen (last week’s 250-point outburst came primarily through one game environment – more on this below) in quite some time. Even with that, the “tale of this slate” cannot be fully told without also mentioning that we’ve had multiple spots of late-week injury news that influence how salary is likely to be spent. That said, the field appears to be reacting to those injury concerns slower than I can remember seeing in recent history, which is likely to lead to a more spread-out slate than we have seen in some time. That creates a unique situation that requires some deeper thought. Let’s dive in!

RESTRICTIVE CHALK VS EXPANSIVE CHALK::

Quick explanation :: Restrictive chalk is an expected highly owned piece that restricts the maneuverability of the remainder of your roster while expansive chalk is an expected highly owned piece that allows for higher amounts of maneuverability on the remainder of your roster. Classifying various forms of chalk as either restrictive or expansive allows us to visualize what it means for roster construction on a given slate and how restrictive a certain player might be – meaning more of the field will look similar from a roster construction standpoint with that piece.

TREY MCBRIDE

EXPANSIVE CHALK. Trey McBride ranks second in the league (amongst tight ends) in targets per route run rate at 27.4 percent. That said, there are significant uncertainties introduced to this offense with the innumerable changes the team is undergoing heading into Week 10. Kyler Murray returns to the starting lineup for the first time since Week 14 of the 2022 season, where he tore his ACL after just three offensive snaps. He has had three weeks of practice time (with just one week of running with the starters) with a second-year tight end and a rookie WR2. Over the course of Kyler’s career, he has held one of the lowest tight end target rates in the league, ranking second to last in 2022 and third to last in both 2021 and 2020. Particularly on a slate where raw points are likely to be more meaningful than in recent weeks, McBride’s range of outcomes most definitely falls short of being the top overall player in expected ownership.

T.J. HOCKENSON

NEITHER EXPANSIVE NOR RESTRICTIVE CHALK. As we’ve covered extensively this season, Hockenson has operated in a role largely confined to the short areas of the field, meaning he has very little chance of surpassing 100 yards through the air. He has seen double-digit looks three times this season with five additional games of eight targets or more and has yet to surpass 88 yards. He gets a difficult matchup on paper, his opponent is highly unlikely to completely push the game environment, and his team is implied for just 19.0 points.

JOE MIXON

NEITHER EXPANSIVE NOR RESTRICTIVE CHALK. I get it, Mixon carries the top median projection versus salary on the slate. We must also understand that he has yet to score more than 20.0 DK points this season and has cracked 100 yards on the ground once in the previous two seasons.

MARQUISE BROWN

NEITHER EXPANSIVE NOR RESTRICTIVE CHALK. Marquise Brown has the fewest number of unknowns amongst Cardinals skill position players but is still being thrown the football from a quarterback seeing his first game action in almost a full calendar year. Brown’s borderline elite 27.7 percent target market share, elite 31.0 percent red zone target share, and solid 25.5 percent targets per route run (TPRR) rate are muted a bit by a less than stellar 21.5 percent TPRR rate against zone coverage this season, which the Falcons find themselves in, at an above average rate. We would also do well to remember that the Falcons have allowed just one quarterback to surpass 250 yards through the air while holding all but Amon-Ra St. Brown and DeAndre Hopkins to 84 yards or fewer this season. 

COWBOYS D/ST

RESTRICTIVE CHALK. The top scoring fantasy defense against Tommy DeVito and an offense averaging just 11.2 points per game (worst in the league) and allowing 5.4 sacks per game (worst in the league). I won’t fight this one at ownership.

TANK DELL

NEITHER EXPANSIVE NOR RESTRICTIVE CHALK. Tank Dell ranks top 10 in fantasy points per route run against man coverage and top 18 in yards per route run against zone coverage this season. He holds a solid 14.0 aDOT (11th deepest in the league) and the Bengals have somewhat quietly allowed the deepest defensive aDOT in the league at 9.7 this season. The Bengals also have only 15 hurries this season and have struggled to consistently generate pressure in the backfield, which should allow quarterback C.J. Stroud a cleaner pocket than he’s seen in other spots this season. We’ve seen what he can do when kept clean and when blitzed this season (Bengals carry an above average 24.8 percent blitz rate). Oh, and Nico Collins and his 20.7 percent target market share and 23.1 percent TPRR rate are missing from the lineup this week. Dell has an elite median expectation to go along with an elite ceiling in this spot.

RACHAAD WHITE

NEITHER EXPANSIVE NOR RESTRICTIVE CHALK. White is extremely like Joe Mixon on this slate, having not surpassed 100 yards on the ground once this season but carrying a robust pass game role. Even so, he’ll need to score multiple touchdowns to sink you for not playing him this week.

JA’MARR CHASE

RESTRICTIVE CHALK. The Bengals will be without Tee Higgins and lead the league in pass rate over expectation (PROE) during the previous month of play. Chase carries an elite 28.3 percent TPRR rate against zone coverage this season, which the Texans have played at the eighth highest rate in 2023. They’ve also allowed explosive plays at the tenth highest rate from zone coverage this season, which spells trouble against the talented wide receiver.

TONY POLLARD

RESTRICTIVE CHALK. Tony Pollard has cracked 20 DK points once this season, which came way back in Week 1 and required two touchdowns. His efficiency metrics have fallen off a clip when compared to the 2022 season as the team has changed the way they utilize him. The theoretical ceiling is there, but I personally prefer a guy like Travis Etienne at cost.

CHALK BUILD::

<< SPECIAL >>

Inner Circle ONLY $29!!

Apply code OWS200 at checkout

*Includes access through the Super Bowl