Hilow is a game theory expert and tournament champion who focuses on mid/high-stakes single-entry/three-entry max
We’ve got a bunch of running back value, some tight end value, a couple of top-tier options at running back and wide receiver, and then a whole bunch of game environments that people aren’t going to know what to do with. This provides us with a solid opportunity to narrow down the cores of our rosters better than the field can, and some great leverage spots in certain game environments (ownership leverage on Rams and Bucs, game environment leverage on MIN/DET, LAC/CIN, SF/SEA, JAX/LAR). Stick to the basics this week as the field is highly likely to be poking around where they likely shouldn’t.
Dear eight-pound, six-ounce, little baby Jesus, can we please see this man handle 80%+ of the running back opportunities from Washington in the absence of JD McKissic? Please? If, again, if, that is the case, Gibson is one of the top running back plays on the slate. His ownership projections have crept up to a place where we need to weigh the possibilities of him not seeing that type of usage, but he’s fresh off a game where he finally started seeing schemed usage through the air.
Solid bet to finish the week amongst the two to three running backs with the most carries. The pass game usage has been hit or miss, which keeps him out of the top tier for me this week.
24-26 running back opportunities is highly likely here against a defense allowing 22.7 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields. He would see a significant bump to expectation should Kyler return. Weather is expected to be no-bueno at game time, with freezing rain and gusty wind conditions.
Becoming one of my favorite plays on the slate, to be completely honest. Even if he sees 80% of the combined opportunities he saw with Swift over the previous four weeks, we’re looking at 24-26 running back opportunities with six to eight of those coming through the air. Keep an eye on the health of Minnesota’s linebacking unit, as both Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks are currently listed as questionable (their absences would be a significant boost to Williams here). Finally, Detroit’s offensive line has generated the most yards before contact in the league this season, and the Lions enjoy the week’s second-highest rated matchup for splash play potential on the ground (behind only the Eagles, and right ahead of the Colts).
The top overall on-paper play on the slate. Currently projected for the fifth-most ownership at the running back position and less ownership than Cooper Kupp.
Some possible issues along the offensive line, but Mattison checks in with the week’s second-highest expected range of opportunities behind only Jonathan Taylor. He’s priced up to somewhat of a no-man’s land, just below the top tier, and leagues above the value at the position, which is likely to hold his ownership in check.
A 6.2 aDOT slot wide receiver that typically plays 55-75% of the offensive snaps (okay, he’s likely to land on the higher end of that range this week with Dingleberry McWhatshisnuts no longer with the team and Darren Waller out) is expected to garner the most ownership at the wide receiver position this week. Let that sink in real quick. Didn’t the field just try this with Jamison Crowder a couple of weeks back? The path to 30+ points is extremely thin here.
The top floor and ceiling combination from the wide receiver position. That said, there are three other pass-catchers that played nearly every snap last week that are expected for far less ownership. More on this below.
The field is very sure that the pass game production from the Bucs is going to flow through Godwin, and Godwin only (kidding, kind of). Godwin is currently projected for three times as much ownership as Mike Evans and two-and-a-half as much as Rob Gronkowski. More on this situation below.
In my mind, he is the player most likely to see a significant boost to expected production with Deebo Samuel out, similar to what we saw towards the tail end of last season. Expected for lower ownership than Elijah Mitchell, whose pass game involvement has been hit or miss.
In the Week 7 contest in which Darren Waller missed, Foster Moreau played every offensive snap and was in a route on 64.7% of the pass plays (22 of 34). After Waller left the game with a knee injury on Thanksgiving, Moreau played every snap and was in a route on 66.7% of the pass plays (26 of 39). Those rates are right in line with Waller’s seasonal average thus far this year (64%). Those two games were against Philadelphia and Dallas, who rank 31st and 24th in blitz rate. Washington ranks fifth in blitz rate. I expect Moreau’s route participation to take a slight hit here as he’s kept in to block at a higher rate against a hungry, and blitz-heavy, defense.
I don’t mind this one at all, as a blitz-heavy defense against a backup quarterback that has a propensity to throw picks, with the Giants missing their two most dynamic pass-catchers (Kadarius Toney and Sterling Shepard).