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Mike’s Player Grid 3.23

Mike Johnson (MJohnson86) has racked up nearly $500,000 in DFS profit as an NFL tournament player with success in all styles of contests


Welcome back to my (Mjohnson86) Player Grid. The format will vary slightly from JM’s Player Grid, as we each see things slightly differently and play in slightly different contests, but should complement his thoughts and content very well for those looking to build their lineups for the week. The format of this article will likely evolve as the season progresses but should provide a lot of value. Enjoy!!


The Core

This is a list of players that stand out to me at each position from using my “Checking the Boxes” criteria outlined in my Checking The Boxes course. This list is a starting point, from which I build out lineups using game theory and roster construction concepts (which we will also touch on) with the mindset being to find the best plays with big ceilings. Low ownership is a bonus, but not a must. This section will focus primarily on three positions – running back, tight end, and defense – as the other two positions (quarterback and wide receiver) tend to have more dependent tendencies which I try to attack from other angles (which we will get into in the other sections). I like all of these plays on all sites, unless otherwise noted:

Running Back ::
Tony Pollard

Absolute stud. Top-priced RB on the slate but is probably still underpriced.

Bijan Robinson

This dude is the real deal. The Lions have struggled to stop the run this year and games in Detroit have a tendency to go bananas. Bijan is averaging 19.2 Draftkings points per game without touchdowns. Eventually, he’s going to have a two or three TD game and break the slate.

Jahmyr Gibbs

A discount version of Bijan, everything we talked about there holds true for Gibbs as well. David Montgomery is out so it’s reasonable to expect Gibbs to see a bigger role from what he’s done so far where he managed 10.3 DK points per game without scoring. That number should go up and he’s the type of player who is eventually going to make big plays and score touchdowns. 

Raheem Mostert

This game environment is going overlooked but is quietly the second-highest total on the slate. The Broncos just got torched by Brian Robinson and backup RB Salvon Ahmed is going to miss this game, cementing Mostert’s status as the primary back.

Second-Tier

A lot of RB options this week, so I’m splitting this into a second tier as all of the following players have great setups but I think are much less likely to post a game that runs away from the field than those RBs listed above:

Alexander Matison

Mattison has struggled mightily this season, but he’s getting almost all of the backfield work and is playing in the week’s premier game environment. Forget these first two games, he’s done well in good matchups when he gets volume throughout his career. The Chargers defense appears to be much more beatable than the Eagles and Bucs teams Mattison faced so far.

Josh Kelley

If at first you don’t succeed…..try, try again. Kelley flopped last week in the lead role but gets an improved matchup and game environment to give it another go. I would guess he touches the ball 20 times and he’s got a really good chance to score a TD.

Javonte Williams

The matchup, game environment, and talent are all there and Javonte will carry single-digit ownership – we just need Sean Payton to ride him at some point. This is a bit of a leap of faith for GPPs specifically.

Jerome Ford

Matchup is tough and the game environment is questionable, but at sub-$5k for a feature back that’s a home favorite I can’t just outright ignore him. He’s not a priority for me when making rosters but if I need a cheaper option to make the rest of a roster work, Ford is my guy.

Tight End :: 
Taysom Hill

If I could draw up an ideal situation for a Taysom Hill smash spot, this would be it. Facing a Packers defense that has struggled for years stopping rushing quarterbacks, Taysom is coming off a game in which he had nine rushes, two targets, and a pass attempt. The Saints are without both Alvin Kamara and Jamaal Williams, so this is a game Taysom should be a big part of the game plan once again. He has legitimate 25-point upside and at his price point, you can’t say that about the tight ends around him.

TJ Hockenson

Hockenson is an elite GPP play as he provides leverage on the highest priced and highest projected ownership tight end on the slate (Kelce) and has the lowest projected ownership among the core players in the week’s premium game environment (LAC // MIN).

Kyle Pitts

Pitts has been frustrating in fantasy football for quite some time now. That being said, his salary is extremely low and he will come with almost no ownership. We know how physically gifted he is and he has a 100% route participation through two weeks (meaning when he’s on the bench they are running the ball anyway) as well as the league’s highest average depth of target among tight ends. It’s reached the tipping point where we don’t need that much for him to not kill us at his salary but his upside is disproportionate to his potential – especially if the Falcons fall behind and have to throw more than we’ve seen so far.

Defense :: 
Browns

Elite defense facing a quarterback who has not looked good this year.

Commanders

Josh Allen has a propensity for turnovers, the Bills defense is projected to lead the slate in ownership, and there’s a hurricane lurking. You’ll get them at tiny ownership (FD) or near-min price (DK).

Chiefs

Basically a lock on Fanduel and worth considering paying up for on Draftkings. They are a really good defense, Justin Fields takes sacks and turns the ball over. They are clearly the defense most likely to post a game of 20+ fantasy points this week.


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