The Matchup ::
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- In 3 games vs Mike Pettine, Russell Wilson is averaging 220.7 passing yards, 2.3 TDs, & 32.3 rushing yards, in 3 Wins with point totals of 28, 30, & 27
- Against top-10 pass efficiency offenses, GB has allowed point totals of 16, 24, 24, 26, 37, & 10, with both games under 20 coming vs MIN
- SEA ranks 4th in pass efficiency, averaging 25.3 ppg and scoring 27+ in 10/17 games
- In 5 games without Duane Brown, SEA has scored 32 vs CLE, 16 vs BAL, 13 vs ARI, 21 vs SF, and 17 vs PHI
- With G Mike Iupati vs SF, Travis Homer totaled 92 yards on 15 touches in his first start
- Without Iupati vs PHI, Homer totaled 17 yards on 12 touches
- Tyler Lockett has as many games under 10 DK Points (6) as he does games over 17 DK Points
- 2 of Metcalf’s 3 games above 20 DK points have come in the last 2 weeks
- Only CAR allowed more rushing TDs to RBs than SEA (18) in 2019
- Aaron Jones tied for the most rushing TDs in 2019 with 16, and his 19 total TDs led everyone
- Jamaal Williams left the game vs MIN in W16, and Aaron Jones recorded 48 carries for 254 yards in the last two games
- Jones had only received more than 13 carries once since W5 before the last 2 games
- WRs to clear 100 yards vs SEA: Ross, Kupp, Odell, Julio, Evans, D Samuel x2, DJ Moore
- Ross, Julio, and Evans all cleared 150 yards vs SEA
- Tyler Boyd is the only receiver to receive double-digit targets vs SEA and not eclipse 100 yards
- In his last 9 games, Davante Adams has only received fewer than 10 targets one time
- On 42 targets over the last 3 games, Adams has amassed 312 yards and 2 TDs
- The only QBs to throw for over 300 yards vs SEA in 2019 are Dalton, Goff, Schaub, and Winston
- Rodgers has almost as many games under 200 yards (3) as he does over 300 yards (4)
The Game ::
Through the first three games, things stack up pretty easily ::
Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes are the quarterbacks likeliest to hit, while Deshaun Watson has an outside shot at “magicking” himself into the discussion.
Dalvin Cook and Derrick Henry are “bet on volume in bad spots for their offense, but good individual matchup” options at the higher end of the price range, while Mostert // Ingram // Williams are all players who have capped touches but can produce on big plays, touchdowns, and (in the case of Williams) pass-catching — with Hyde on the fringe of all this for his yardage-and-touchdown role as a big road underdog.
Wide receivers are fairly ugly, with volume expected to be low for the Vikings, 49ers, Titans, Ravens, and Texans wideouts, and with the Vikings, Titans, and Texans having poor matchups to boot. With Tyreek Hill the main wide receiver on the only remaining passing attack — and with Hill generally failing to top eight targets — it would not be even a little bit surprising if no wide receiver from the first three games sees more than nine targets, making wide receiver the best spot to “bet on upside and hope things click in place.”
Tight ends give us plenty to like, with Kittle // Andrews // Kelce all likely to see seven to 10 targets, and with each guy in a good spot. There are even outside “bet on touchdown” cases to be made for tight ends from the Vikings, Titans, and Texans.
Seattle at Green Bay, then, becomes the least straightforward — if only for the fact that neither of these teams does a great job of maximizing their talent from a stats-driven standpoint, with the Seahawks (as explored throughout the year) content to “play for the fourth quarter,” and with the Packers set on dividing work in the backfield between Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams when both guys are healthy, in spite of Jones’ clearly superior skill set.
We’ll start on the Green Bay side, where the mention of wide receivers above leads us to the one wideout on this slate with a clear shot at double-digit looks: Davante Adams. Adams has seen double-digit looks in eight of his last nine games, with 12+ looks in five of those games. The Packers do a good job adjusting his routes for coverage, and Aaron Rodgers’ ability to “run the offense at the line of scrimmage” (as well as his comfort level with Adams, and the raw nature of the other options in this pass game) almost guarantees a high share of the Packers’ available targets in any given game. Adams is the most straightforward skill position player on the slate — which obviously doesn’t “guarantee” that elite production will follow; but it does mean that he enters this slate with the fewest paths to a dud and the most paths to a high-end score of any player available. Behind Adams, Allen Lazard has been the clear number two option for Rodgers lately (recent target counts of 3 // 3 // 9 // 8), while Geronimo Allison (1 // 4 // 2 // 4), Jake Kumerow (0 // 1 // 1 // 2), Marquez Valdes-Scantling (0 // 1 // 1 // 7), Jimmy Graham (5 // 4 // 1 // 7), Marcedes Lewis (1 // 1 // 1 // 1), and even Robert Tonyan (1 // 2 // 0 // 3) all mix in behind him (with the running backs involved in the pass game as well). A fundamental understanding of how this offense is run — with most play designs flowing through Adams and the running backs, and with Rodgers running the show at the line of scrimmage as much as any quarterback in football and having a long history of leaning on the guys he trusts the most — reminds us that the best way for players outside the running backs and Davante Adams to produce is by getting open when Rodgers goes off script. This is where much of Lazard’s production has come of late (making this production viable, but less bankable than it might appear), and this also opens the door for a random big play or touchdown to come from an unexpected source. Ultimately, of course, the only bankable bets on Green Bay are Adams and the running backs — and with Jamaal Williams set to return (recent healthy touch counts of 13 // 18 // 14 // 8 // 9, compared to touch counts in those games for Aaron Jones of 13 // 13 // 15 // 22 // 13), even the backfield has its question marks. As broken down above in The Matchup section :: this is a solid spot for the Packers’ backfield as a whole — so compare the touch counts on the Packers’ backs to the other running backs available on the slate, and ask if you want to bet on volume for other guys, or if you want to bet on efficiency for Packers backs.
The Seahawks’ backs are even less straightforward, as this team is all but certain to lean toward the run against this Packers team that finished the season 23rd in DVOA against the run but 10th against the pass, and that allowed the second fewest wide receiver catches in the league. Unfortunately, Marshawn Lynch is going to operate as the short-yardage + goal line + clock-killing back, while Travis Homer is going to operate as the more traditional “lead” back, but with his touches capped (15 // 11 in the last two) by the presence of Lynch, and with his chances for a touchdown much slimmer. Furthermore — as explored throughout the year — the Seahawks tend to set themselves up in scoring position on the ground, but then tend to score through the air. Either of these backs will need to bust out a couple big plays or multiple scores in order to rise up the slate.
The note about the Packers having allowed the second fewest wide receiver catches can be a bit misleading if taken out of context, so to frame it in the proper context :: Green Bay allowed a monstrous 15.84 yards per reception to wideouts this year (with a ridiculous 13 teams allowing fewer yards to wideouts than the Packers, in spite of this team giving up the second fewest catches) — so while targets were not plentiful for wideouts in this matchup (eighth fewest in the league), production was still plentiful in this spot around big plays. D.K. Metcalf (recent target counts of 6 // 7 // 6 // 4 // 1 // 12 // 9) has become the preferred target for Russell Wilson, but Tyler Lockett (2 // 3 // 6 // 9 // 7 // 7 // 8) is still very much involved, and his big-play upside (13.01 yards per catch this year — not on the same level with Metcalf’s 16.31, but still solid) remains more than theoretical. Each player scored eight touchdowns on the year, making each an interesting option to consider in spite of the Packers doing a good job tightening up against wideouts in the red zone (fifth fewest WR touchdowns allowed). Although the Seahawks are likely to lean run-heavy, this attack is concentrated enough that Metcalf and Lockett both see fairly steady volume. Joining these two will be Jacob Hollister as a “hope for a touchdown on his short-area role” option and some rotation/combination of David Moore, Malik Turner, and Jaron Brown (the latter two of whom are expected to return this week).
JM’s Interpretation ::
The full-slate Interpretation can be found here.
Xandamere’s Showdown Notes ::
- Not the highest total game but the closest spread, which gives the best opportunities to build in different ways, from a beatdown to a shootout.
- Jamaal Williams is, infuriatingly, back and likely to resume his very nearly even split with Aaron Jones, which means Jones is likely to be overowned relative to his median expectations (though still possessing a massive ceiling). Williams himself has a strong floor but without a tremendous ceiling.
- Davante Adams, as always, is the safest Packer (and, given the Seahawks’ tendency to split work in weird and unpredictable ways, the safest skill position player overall).
- Lazard has taken over the WR2 role but note that Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Jimmy Graham both saw 7 targets last week (which is completely out of nowhere for MVS as he saw a total of 2 targets the prior 3 weeks combined). I don’t know how this is shaking out but don’t forget about the ancillary receivers in MME.
- The Seahawks’ run game has become far less playable of late, with Travis Homer’s pass game role diminishing last week in spite of playing more snaps than Marshawn Lynch. Lynch is the best bet for a touchdown, while Homer is likely to see the field more if the Hawks are behind. Both are priced reasonably but, overall, I think Hollister, Lazard, and Williams are all more attractive plays in the same price range.
- D.K. Metcalf is likely to go overowned compared to Tyler Lockett despite having very similar overall expectation as people tend to chase recent production. Both are fine and both can certainly pop off here, but I want more exposure to Lockett at the discounted price.
- David Moore’s lock on the WR3 role is set to vanish as Jaron Brown and Malik Turner are expected back. Both are significantly cheaper than Moore, while all are highly volatile and essentially just MME targets.
Some groups to consider:
- At most 1 kicker
- At most 1 defense
- Pair captain receivers with their QB
- Pair captain Russ with at least 1 receiver and captain Rodgers with at least 2 receivers
- At most 1 of Lynch and Homer
- At most 1 of Moore, Turner, and Brown
- At most 2 of all Packers receivers aside from the running backs and Davante (you could even consider at most 1 here)