XANDAMERE’S SHOWDOWN SLANT
Sunday night football brings us one of those games for which I am super glad that Showdown exists because otherwise, I would pay zero attention. The Steelers visit the Dolphins for a 45.5 total game with Miami favored by a touchdown (meaning the Steelers are implied for under 20 points, what fun). Both teams are getting healthier, with all of Tua Tagovailoa, Kenny Pickett, and Pat Freiermuth expected to return to action.
The Miami run game has been a weird one this season. Chase Edmonds started out as the lead back, which was what most people expected in the offseason based on the contract they gave him and depth charts (and you can see it from season-long and Best Ball ADPs) but Raheem Mostert seems to have stolen the job away from him. Mostert has out-snapped Edmonds significantly over the last three games, a span in which he has 47 carries and 8 targets against just 10 carries and 7 targets for Edmonds. Miami’s coaching staff has talked about there being an “Edmonds game” coming, but it’s hard to know if that’s just coach-speak or not. On paper, as a large home favorite in a reasonable matchup, Mostert looks quite underpriced at just $7,800. Just be aware of the risk of a role switch, and if you’re going very heavy Mostert in MME, it makes sense to hedge with some rosters that are built around the idea of Edmonds beating him out in this game. In a vacuum, Edmonds looks like a really terrible play with 6 or fewer carries in every game since Week 1 and averaging just 2.5 targets per game on the season; he’s overpriced for the role, which should lead to very low ownership.
Ownership updates automatically
In the air, Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle have really not missed a beat despite a merry-go-round of quarterbacks in the past few weeks. At least one of them has put up 13+ Draftkings points in every game this season, and that number jumps to 18+ Draftkings points if you look at 5 of 6 games. The odds are very, very high that at least one of them will land in the optimal lineup in a positive matchup with their best quarterback back in action and a high team total. These two represent one of the most concentrated pairings of volume in the entire NFL, with a whopping 113 out of 172 targets to receivers (113 out of 213 if you include targets to backs). Put another way: Tyreek Hill has 65 targets, and Jaylen Waddle has 48 targets. Next on the team is Mike Gesicki with just 19. I’m beating the drum here, but these two are lynchpins of this slate – it’s super likely at least one will be in the winning lineup, they will also be very highly owned so it’s a major decision point. If you want to try to be different elsewhere, I would consider a rule of every lineup must have at least one of Hill/Waddle. Or, you could bet against that as your major contrarian stand, and exclude them both. You’re not likely to win that way, but if you DO win, you’re far less likely to be duplicated just by excluding those two guys. After Reke and Waddle it gets really thin in the Dolphins receiving corps. Mike Gesicki appears to have risen from the dead with two games of 4+ targets in his last three, and while I expect his usage to be volatile from game to game, talent has never been the issue with Gesicki, the Dolphins actually passing to him has been the issue. He’s a good receiver and if he gets the volume, he can absolutely hit here. Past that, you’re drawing very thin. Trent Sherfield is playing the most WR snaps after Reke/Waddle but has only exceeded 10 receiving yards in one game (seriously). Cedrick Wilson and River Cracraft aren’t playing much and belong only in MME punt pools, and while Durham Smythe is looking likelier to play than not, he only has seven targets on the year (if Smythe misses, Hunter Long and Tanner Conner will enter the MME pool, and you can also include fullback Alec Ingold here as well regardless of Smythe’s status). This is a wildly concentrated passing offense, and that’s what makes it the critical decision point of the slate.