Game Overview ::
By HILOW >>
- The only game on the week with a game total north of 50 points, which means we should expect a good deal of interest from the field here.
- The first and second most pass-heavy offenses in the league when trailing – a boost to the game environment overall.
- Fifth and eighth fastest situation-neutral pace of play offenses, and the first and fifth fastest offenses in the first half of games.
- Buffalo ranks first in defensive drive success rate allowed, while Tampa Bay ranks 13th.
- Both offenses operate primarily from 11-personnel, with the Bill mixing in 10-personnel at a 10% rate (four wide receivers).
- These offenses rank first and second in the league in situation-neutral pass rate (first and second down with the score within seven points).
How Buffalo Will Try To Win ::
The Bills rank first in the league in situation-neutral pass rate at 65% this season and also rank first in the league in pass rate when trailing. They have made a more conscious effort to maintain a more balanced unit when in control of games, leading to a 60% pass rate overall, but they still lean extremely pass-heavy overall. Enter a matchup with a Buccaneers team that opposing offenses rarely run against (only 196 rushes against this season, lowest in the league) due to an extreme pass-funnel lean, and we start to get a pretty good idea of how we expect Brian Daboll to approach his game plan here.
The backfield situation for the Bills was muddied last week when Zach Moss made his return to the lineup after being a healthy scratch in Week 12. In that game, Devin Singletary and Moss shared lead duties, playing 48% and 41% of the offensive snaps, respectively, which makes sense considering the nor’easter weather environment in which they played. The bottom line here is we should expect a three-way timeshare under normal conditions (all three of Singletary, Moss, and Matt Breida active) in a difficult matchup on the ground (4.12 net-adjusted line yards metric against a defense allowing just 23.6 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields). We can typically target this Bucs defense with pass-catching running backs, but the split in workload and below average running back target rate from the Bills leaves all three of these backs low floor, moderate ceiling plays that should be reserved for only the deepest of MME pools.
Stefon Diggs, Emmanuel Sanders, Cole Beasley, and Dawson Knox all operate as “primary pass-catchers” in this offense, all typically playing more than 70% of the offensive snaps in a given week. That should be considered the floor this week against an opponent we know tilts opposing offenses pass-heavy. Josh Allen already has five games this season with more than 40 pass attempts (42, 43, 43, 47, and 51), which should be considered a legitimate projection against the Bucs. We’ll cover a more in-depth discussion surrounding this pass offense in the DFS Interpretation section.
How Tampa Bay Will Try to win ::
The Buccaneers average the most pass attempts per game at 43.1 on 66.3 total offensive plays run per game. We know this team is built around Tom Brady and the pass game, which shouldn’t change even considering the matchup against the league’s top-ranked pass defense. Of note, the Bills will be playing without their best-graded member of the secondary in Tre’Davious White for the remainder of the season, after he was placed on season-ending IR before Week 13. Basically, we’ve got a concentrated offense amongst Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Rob Gronkowski, and Leonard Fournette, a solid game environment, and high expected pass volume, the only problem is there is no clear indicator where the production is likeliest to flow through.
Leonard Fournette has taken a stranglehold on this backfield of late, playing 81% and 87% of the offensive snaps over the previous two weeks. He’s parlayed the increased run into opportunity totals of 25 and 21 those two weeks, with eight targets in each game. That kind of floor is difficult to find on this slate, but he is priced up to a point where a solid point-per-dollar ceiling is a difficult sell. The matchup on the ground yields a moderate 4.28 net-adjusted line yards metric in one of the most strength-on-strength matchups you will see all season (Bucs rank first in adjusted line yards on offense and the Bills rank third on defense). One interesting note here: Fournette is utilized primarily in a power running back role, meaning the majority of his rush attempts come via the “A” or “B” gap (off center and off guard). The Bills rank 26th in the league in power success rate allowed and 31st in the league in open field yards allowed, a dangerous combination against the skillset and utilization of Fournette.
Through the air, we should expect a clear path to another 45+ pass attempts for Brady and the Bucs here. Leonard Fournette has eight targets in back-to-back games, the Bills no longer have Tre’Davious White to be utilized in shadow coverage on the perimeter (Mike Evans), and Chris Godwin and Rob Gronkowski are still on hand to terrorize the interior of opposing defenses. Of note, the addition of Breshad Perriman to this offense has shifted Chris Godwin back to a primary slot role after he has split his time amongst the slot and perimeter this season without Antonio Brown. This is a boost to his expected volume and production in a more natural-for-him role. All four of the primary pass-catchers on this offense (Evans, Godwin, Gronk, and Fournette) should be considered high floor, high ceiling pieces from this offense in this game.
Likeliest Game flow ::
It is likeliest we see this game play to an uptempo, aerial-based game environment, with each team very clearly biased towards the air. That means the opportunity for additional offensive plays, additional possessions, and heightened chances for points to be scored. Pace: check. Pass rates: check. Game total: check. Concentrated offenses: check. It’s all here for this one. The most telling stat that highlights what to expect from this game environment is each team’s first half pace of play (first and fifth) and first half pass rates (first and sixth), meaning we’re not relying on game flow or score on the scoreboard to define how these teams are likeliest to attack. This is a significant boost to the overall game environment here, and since we have a good idea of how each team will primarily choose to attack (through the air), and since that avenue of attack is highly unlikely to change based on game flow, we’re left with the top game environment on the slate (Vegas agrees).
TOP PLAYS OF THE WEEKEND
SORTABLE GREEN ZONE TOUCHES
TEAM & PLAYER DK POINTS
DFS+ Interpretation ::
By LexMiraglia10 >>
- Only QBs over just 200 yds vs BUF: Tua (205), Heinicke (212), Tanny (216), Mahomes (272)
- Brady has thrown for 200+ yds in all 12 g, and 275+ in 8 of them
- BUF has allowed just 8 pass TDs to 16 INT
- Brady has multiple TDs in 10 of 12 g
- NE is the only defense to keep Brady from scoring
- The only game BUF has played since losing top CB Tre’Davious White for the season was a wind game vs NE in which NE threw just three passes
- BUF has allowed the fewest WR DK pts/g (23.8) by a wide margin
- BUF has allowed just three WR TDs, and 109.4 WR yds/g
- TB tg without AB: Godwin (7, 11, 12, 8, 6, 5, 17) // Evans (10, 10, 4, 3, 11, 5, 10) // Brate (5, 4, 4, 3, 6, 4, 1) // Gronk (8, 8, 10, 8)
- Godwin has 19+ DK pts in 5/7 games without AB: (19.6, 28.1, 31, 19.2, 33.2)
- Evans DK pts without AB: (21.6, 31.6, 12.8, 14.2, 20.3, 4.6, 16.9)
- Evans has maxed out at 20.3 DK pts since W7
- Gronk in 2021: 8:90:2 // 4:39:2 // 4:55 // 6:71 // 7:123 // 4:58:2
- TEs to top 40+ yds vs BUF (Gesicki x2, Thomas, Kelce, Arnold)
- Gronk has just one game below 8 tg all season (5), (8, 8, 8, 10, 8)
- Fournette tot touches: 16 // 15 // 7 // 25 // 17 // 28 // 19 // 13 // 20 // 16 // 25 // 21
- Fournette tot yds: 59 // 76 // 34 // 139 // 110 // 127 // 90 // 43 // 92 // 74 // 131 // 92
- Fournette has scored 5 TDs in the last two games, including his first two through the air
- RBs with 10+ rush att vs BUF: Najee (16:45) // Gibson (12:31) // Henry (20:143:3) // Gaskin (12:36) // Hyde (21:67) // Carter (16:39:1) // Taylor (32:185:4) // T Jones (16:27) // Harris (10:111:1), Stevenson (24:78)
- BUF has allowed the 4th lowest success rate on RB tg
- Allen has nine games of 2+ TDs, five games of 3+ TDs
- TB has allowed 2+ TDs to 7 QBs; 3+ TDs to 4 QBs
- Allen has just three games of 300+ pass yds this year
- TB has allowed 300+ pass yds in 4/12 games
- TB ranks 7th in def pass DVOA
- TB has faced the most pass att/g (39.8)
- QB rushing vs TB: Dak (4:13) // Hurts (10:44:2) // Fields (8:38) // Winston (4:40) // Heinicke (3:15) // Dimes (3:10) // Wentz (3:21)
- Allen has 8 rush TDs in every season of his career so far
- Allen has eight games in 2021 of 30+ rush yds (3 of 50+)
- TB has allowed the 14th lowest success rate to WRs on the most WR tg faced
- TB has allowed nine 60+ yd WRs; four 100+ yd WRs
- 60+ yd games: Diggs (9/12) // Beasley (4/12) // Sanders (4/12)
- 8+ tg games: Diggs (8/12) // Beasley (5/12) // Sanders (3/12)
- Diggs has 10+ targets in 16/31 games with BUF and 8+ targets in 10 more (5, 6, 6, 7, 7, 7 in the only games below 8)
- Diggs has 11 games of 100+ yds with BUF, and 3 more with 90+ yds
- He only has two of the 11 this season
- Diggs has just four 20+ pt DK scores this year (21.4, 23.9, 33.2, 20.4)
- Diggs now has 25+ DK pts with BUF in 8 of 31 games, but just one so far in 12 g in 2021
- Beasley has three games of 80+ yds this season (11:98, 7:88:1, 10:110), but also eight games with a combined 185 yds (23.1 yds/g)
- Sanders hasn’t reached 15 DK pts since W5 and he caught 2 TDs both times he did
- Sanders has maxed out at 5 rec this season, and has totaled 168 rec yds in the last 6g
- Knox targets: 4, 3, 5, 8, 4, 3, 1, 10, 3, 6
- So 6/10 games wih 4+ tg, and at least 3 in 9/10
- Knox has 7 TDs in 10 g
- TB has allowed 5 TE TDs
- 11 TEs have 30+ yds vs TB (seven of 40+ yds)
- Season high in DK pts: Moss (18.1) // Singletary (17.1) // Breida (19)
- Season high in touches: Moss (16) // Singletary (16) // Breida (11)
- Moss/Singletary season-highs both came in first MIA blowout, Breida’s in NYJ blowout