Week 14 Matchups


Kickoff Thursday, Dec 9th 8:20pm Eastern

Steelers (
20.75) at

Vikings (
24.25)

Over/Under 45.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Steelers Run D
4th DVOA/4th Yards allowed per carry
Vikings Run O
28th DVOA/26th Yards per carry
Steelers Pass D
19th DVOA/31st Yards allowed per pass
Vikings Pass O
15th DVOA/20th Yards per pass
Vikings Run D
19th DVOA/22nd Yards allowed per carry
Steelers Run O
10th DVOA/24th Yards per carry
Vikings Pass D
26th DVOA/28th Yards allowed per pass
Steelers Pass O
20th DVOA/29th Yards per pass

XANDAMERE’S SHOWDOWN SLANT

Week 14 starts out with the Steelers visiting the Vikings for a low-total 43.5 point game with Minnesota favored by a field goal. Vegas is predicting a very grindy game here. The game takes place in a dome, and as we’ll see, both defenses have significantly underachieved this season. So, while anything is possible in a one-game sample, I’m more likely to build around over scenarios in this one.

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Minnestoa

On the Vikings side, Dalvin Cook is listed as questionable, somewhat confusingly since he was . . .

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Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Cowboys (
26.75) at

WFT (
20.75)

Over/Under 47.5

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Notes

Key Matchups
Cowboys Run D
5th DVOA/17th Yards allowed per carry
Commanders Run O
29th DVOA/27th Yards per carry
Cowboys Pass D
3rd DVOA/12th Yards allowed per pass
Commanders Pass O
27th DVOA/18th Yards per pass
Commanders Run D
10th DVOA/21st Yards allowed per carry
Cowboys Run O
10th DVOA/18th Yards per carry
Commanders Pass D
17th DVOA/23rd Yards allowed per pass
Cowboys Pass O
13th DVOA/10th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By mjohnson86 >>
  • Washington enters on a four game winning streak and a win here would put them within a game of Dallas for the division lead.
  • Dallas has become much more aggressive and pass heavy since their Week 7 bye and this matchup and some injury issues could push them in that direction even more.
  • Washington’s recent success has been fueled by its defense rather than its offense, as they have scored over 20 points only two times in their last seven games.
  • The matchup for Washington’s offense is difficult, but not impossible to overcome.

How dallas Will Try To Win ::

After starting the season focusing on the running game and the 25th highest situation-neutral pass rate in the league, the Cowboys offense has thrown at the 5th highest rate in the league since their Week 7 bye. The circumstances around this week also potentially add fuel to that fire, with injuries and matchup concerns looming for their running game. Ezekiel Elliott has been battling a knee injury and hasn’t looked the same recently, while Tony Pollard is now battling a foot injury (never good for a running back) and missing practice. Meanwhile, the matchup appears very difficult as the Washington defense’s strength is up front, and they have given up an average of only 66 rushing yards per game during their four-game win streak. This week is also the first time since Week 1 that Dallas’ elite receiving trio of Ceedee Lamb, Amari Cooper, and Michael Gallup are all at full health, with none of them on the Week 14 injury report.

Washington’s defense has rebounded quite well after being torched repeatedly to start the season. Their pass defense, in particular, started out the year playing very poorly but has come on strong in recent weeks. While we must acknowledge this improvement, I believe there is a good chance this unit is still very attackable. Digging deeper into this “resurgence” of the Washington pass defense, we see that it has come against the following teams/situations:

  • Las Vegas without its two best playmakers.
  • A Seattle team that has struggled immensely on offense due to having no running game to speak of and no creativity in their passing game, this game also had many weather elements to deal with.
  • The Panthers with Cam Newton at the helm in his first game as a starter.
  • The Buccaneers, who struggle to establish any balance in the running game and were playing without Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski, which made them very predictable, and were coming off a bye week and appeared rusty and out of sync.

The Cowboys have, by far, a more consistent running game and less predictable offense than all of the teams listed. Due to the injury and matchup issues referenced earlier, Dallas will likely lean into a pass-heavy approach in this spot but will be much more difficult for Washington to contain than the teams they have faced recently. The strength of the Cowboys offensive line and running game will force Washington to respect that aspect of the game, while the Cowboys have too many weapons for Washington to try to focus on just taking away one or two. The reputation, personnel, and tendencies of the Dallas offense will allow them to use play action and other pass game concepts effectively throughout the game.

How washington Will Try To Win ::

During their four-game winning streak, Washington is running the ball at the third-highest rate in the league and has never trailed by more than one score at any point. Washington will almost certainly try to replicate the recipe that they have had recent success with and slow the game down to neutralize the potent Dallas offense. There are some signs of potential success with that approach, as Washington is sixth in PFF’s run-blocking grades while the Dallas run defense, although league average in many metrics such as DVOA and yards per carry, is PFF’s 30th graded run defense. In the passing game, Trevon Diggs has been a stud for Dallas all season and will likely see a lot of Terry McLaurin in this matchup. While Diggs has been terrific, it is important to note that McLaurin got the best of him last year and had two very good games. While the odds of a ceiling game are not overly high in this spot, it does matter for Washington’s ability to move the ball that their top receiver is unlikely to be erased, as relying on Diggs to shut down one side of the field has had a lot to do with the Cowboys defense’s success this year.

Washington is likely to continue playing at a relatively slow pace and high run rate until forced to do otherwise. Their passing game will likely be concentrated on their “alpha” receiver, despite a difficult on-paper matchup, with the rest of the targets likely being distributed across a wide range of skill position players in a “dink and dunk” approach focused on moving the chains and keeping Taylor Heinicke from being forced into mistakes under pressure.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

Dallas is the team likeliest to control this game, and their offensive success will directly correlate with the odds of this game turning things up. Dallas is second in the league in both situation-neutral pace of play and in terms of seconds per snap. Given the tendencies, Dallas has shown, along with what this matchup dictates and the talent in the Dallas passing game, it is likely that Dallas is able to push the pace in this game and force Washington to keep up. If the Cowboys get a decent lead and force the issue on Washington, it will be interesting to see how effective Taylor Heinicke can be in “come back mode.” Washington does have a very good offensive line (ranking top-6 in the league in both run and pass blocking), which increases the chances of them being able to make some plays and keep up if Dallas is able to take control.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By LexMiraglia10 >>

Taylor Heinicke:

  • Brady, Herbert, Hurts, Darnold all threw for 300+ yds vs DAL in the opening month
  • Mahomes (260) is the only one to throw for 250 yds since (Glennon, Mac, Cousins, Teddy, Ryan)
  • DAL allowed four straight 300 yd QBs, then four straight under 250 yds, and then 260, 373, 264 to Mahomes, Carr, Taysom
  • Heinicke has just four games of 260+ pass yds, and none since W8
  • Heinicke has thrown 11 INT
  • DAL has an INT in 10/12 games, with 19 total INT on season (T-most)

Terry McLaurin:

  • McLaurin with 10+ tg: 11:107:1 // 6:123:2 // 4:46 // 7:122:1
  • McLaurin with sub-10 tg: 4:62 // 4:62 // 4:28 // 3:23 // 6:59 // 5:103:1 // 4:51 // 3:22
  • McLaurin has 8 games of 11.9 DK pts or less (10.2, 10.2, 8.6, 6.8, 6.5, 11.9, 9.1, 5.2)
  • McLaurin has 4 games of 24+ DK pts (30.7, 33.3, 28.2, 24.3)
  • DAL has allowed the 6th most WR DK pts/g
  • WRs with 70+ yds vs DAL: AB (121), Godwin (105) // Allen (108), Williams (91) // Moore (113) // Toney (189) // Bourne (75) // Thielen (78) // Patrick (85) // Hill (77) // Renfrow (134), Djax (102) // Deonte (96)
  • 9/13 scored at least one TD
  • McLaurin career vs DAL: 5:62:1 // 7:90:1 // 7:92
  • 9, 11, 9 targets in those games
  • At least one WAS TE has 30+ rec yds in 9/12 games
  • DAL has allowed 9 TEs of 30+ rec yds

Antonio Gibson:

  • Gibson rushing since WAS’s bye: 24:64:2 // 19:95 // 27:111 // 23:88
  • Gibson also has 12 rec in last two weeks, though McKissic missed last week
  • Gibson now has 5 games in 2021 with 20+ rush att, with 3 coming since Bye
  • RBs with 70+ yds vs DAL: Ekeler (115) // Hubbard (71) // Harris (108:1) // Cook (78) // Gordon (95:1), Williams (111) // Gallman (76) // CEH (76:1) // Jacobs (112:1)
  • Gordon & Jacobs are the only two with 20+ rush att vs DAL
  • DAL ranks 19th in def rush DVOA
  • DAL has allowed just 7 RB TDs

Dak Prescott:

  • 6 of WAS’s first 7 opposing QBs threw for 275+ yds
  • WAS has since held Teddy, Brady, Cam, Russ, & Carr all under 250 yds
  • Dak has thrown for 250+ yds in just five of 11 games
  • WAS has allowed multiple TDs to 9 QBs
  • Dak has scored multiple TDs in eight of 11 games
  • Game scores of Dak’s games of 250+ yds: 29-31 // 44-20 // 35-29 // 43-3 // 33-36

DAL WRs:

  • WAS has allowed the 5th most WR DK pts/g
  • WAS has allowed the 6th most WR rec yds/g
  • Gallup with Dak, McCarthy, & 1+ of Lamb/Cooper: 3:50 // 2:58 // 6:138:1 // 2:29 // 4:36 // 3:42 // 5:44 // 5:36:1
  • DAL WR tg high by game in 2021: 16 // 9 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 11 // 13 // 9 // 7 // 10 // 10 // 13
  • DAL WR yds high by game in 2021: 139 // 81 // 66 // 69 // 84 // 149 // 122 // 33 // 94 // 44 // 106 // 122
  • At least one DAL WR has finished with 100+ yds in just 5 games
  • Lamb has 80+ yds in 7/10 full games
  • WAS has allowed 80+ yds to 9 WRs

Dalton Schultz:

  • Schultz targets: 6, 2, 7, 8, 8, 6, 7, 5, 2, 8, 7, 5
  • That’s 8 games with 6+ tg in 2021, and just two below 5
  • Schultz has 40+ yds with Dak in 9/11 games: 45, 18, 80, 58, 79, 79, 54, 14, 53, 46, 43
  • WAS has allowed 40+ yds to 6 TEs, and 30+ yds to 11 TEs

DAL RBs:

  • Elliott since his 28.2 DK pts in W5: 18.9 // 11.3 // 12.6 // 21.8 // 12.8 // 16.9 // 6.7
  • Pollard’s touches: 7, 16, 12, 10, 18, 13, 8, 6, 18, 9, 14, 11
  • Pollard’s total yds: 43, 140, 65, 67, 103, 63, 27, 43, 98, 70, 68, 74
  • Pollard has just 5 games of 10+ DK pts (26, 14.3, 15.8, 10.8, 15.4)
  • WAS ranks 8th in def rush DVOA
  • WAS has allowed just 7 RBs to top 70+ total yds, and just three of 60+ rush yds

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Jaguars (
17.75) at

Titans (
26.75)

Over/Under 44.5

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Notes

Key Matchups
Jaguars Run D
11th DVOA/7th Yards allowed per carry
Titans Run O
18th DVOA/17th Yards per carry
Jaguars Pass D
30th DVOA/20th Yards allowed per pass
Titans Pass O
19th DVOA/13th Yards per pass
Titans Run D
2nd DVOA/2nd Yards allowed per carry
Jaguars Run O
20th DVOA/9th Yards per carry
Titans Pass D
27th DVOA/24th Yards allowed per pass
Jaguars Pass O
6th DVOA/19th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By HILOW >>
  • Urban Meyer. That’s legitimately a significant bullet point in this game.
  • Not necessarily a wide range of outcomes for this game overall, but an extremely wide range of outcomes as far as individual production goes for all participants.
  • The Titans rank 24th in situation-neutral pace of play (25th overall) while the Jaguars rank 13th (first overall).
  • You’re about to read a lot of words to describe why this game doesn’t carry much fantasy appeal, so if you’re in a time crunch, feel free to move along.

How Jacksonville Will Try To Win ::

I’m still not sure the Jaguars even know how they will try to win games. Let’s take a trip down memory lane, shall we? This story begins all the way back in Week 13 of the 2021 NFL season (yea, that’s last week). LaViska Shenault, Jr. saw five touches on the Jaguars’ opening drive of the game and proceeded to see only three the rest of the game on his lowest snap count of the season. In the same game, James Robinson lost his second fumble of the season early in the game (fumbles in consecutive weeks), leading to a second straight “you’re benched because you fumbled” showing. Robinson has played only 52% and 44% of the offensive snaps over the previous two weeks, and it hasn’t been due to his nagging heel injury, it has been because his head coach is a putz. When Carlos Hyde and Chris Manhertz are playing as many snaps as your two most talented and dynamic offensive play-makers, you’ve basically thrown in the towel. Rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence publicly backed James Robinson this week as well, saying they need him on the field. Basically, this team is a dumpster fire, and all questions regarding whether or not Urban Meyer lost the locker room following his ho-down at the “screw the team corral” have been answered. From a macro perspective, a matchup against the Titans should theoretically be considered one of the more pass-funnel matchups in the league, but we can’t be certain Urban Meyer will devise a game plan to take advantage of that fact.

As for this backfield, James Robinson is typically operating in a 60-65% snap rate and opportunity range when he’s not being disciplined (again, lolz, because J-Rob has lost only three fumbles in 454 career touches), while Carlos Hyde is the de facto change of pace back. Robinson’s role typically lands him in the 18-22 running back opportunity range, but there is more guesswork here than there normally would be due to Urban Meyer’s lost grasp on reality. The matchup is actually above average for the Jaguars, despite what the top-level metrics indicate, yielding an above-average 4.39 net-adjusted line yards metric against a defense surrendering 20.8 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields. Tennessee’s defense is an interesting study, as they are far from elite against the run, but the secondary is simply so attackable that teams prefer to pass against them (they have faced only 222 rush attempts against, which is the fifth-fewest in the league).

Who knows what Urban is doing with these pass-catchers? Because I don’t. Marvin Jones, Jr. and Laquon Treadwell are the only two pass-catchers playing more than 70% of the offensive snaps on a consistent basis, which goes to show the general lack of talent on this offense. That fact also highlights how maddening it is to see their top two players (James Robinson and LaViska Shenault, Jr.) playing such low snap rates and seeing so few opportunities. That said, this offense would clearly prefer to run the football and throw at elevated rates only when absolutely necessary. That most head-scratching part is that they view it as absolutely necessary in very few instances of late after starting the season with six of seven games with 33 pass attempts or more (three of five games since with 28 pass attempts or fewer, the latter two of which were 20-point and 30-point losses). All of that to say, there is very little reason to try and predict what will transpire from this passing offense on a weekly basis. Marvin Jones, Jr. has a high of seven targets over the previous five games. Laquon Treadwell has seen target totals of five, eight, and three in the three games he has acted as the “starter.” Laviska Shenault, Jr. leads the team in targets but has seen his snap rate decrease since the Week 7 bye. James O’Shaughnessy and Chris Manhertz are splitting tight end reps with Dan Arnold lost for the season. The whole thing is a veritable mess.

How Tennessee Will Try to win ::

Tennessee’s Week 13 bye could not have come at a more opportune time, as the team continues to battle a myriad of injuries. Running back Jeremy McNichols practiced in full on Wednesday and should return to form a split backfield, joined by Dontrell Hilliard and D’Onta Foreman. Also, Julio Jones’ 21-day practice window was opened on Monday and he proceeded to practice on Wednesday. Consider Julio likely to make his return this week, assuming he avoids any setbacks with his injured hamstring. The Titans currently rank fourth in the league in overall rush rates on the season, checking in at 53%, and rank dead last in the league in pass rates when trailing at 58%. This team would like to run the football. Even in the four games played without Derrick Henry, the Titans carry a 56% rush rate when trailing and 53% overall. As in, not much has changed with respect to their weekly game plan while Henry has been out. In those four games (two wins and two losses), Ryan Tannehill has pass attempts of 27, 27, 52 (his mysterious four-interception game against the Texans of all teams), and 21.

Likeliest Game flow ::

It is likely the Titans assert themselves sooner rather than later through a methodical, slow-paced approach on offense and a solid, yet unspectacular defense. From a macro perspective, this game is likely to play to a gross slugfest, with each team likely leaning extremely run-heavy unless otherwise urged away from a conservative approach. That particular setup favors the Titans, who are better equipped to find success in their desired plan of attack, but the maddening three-way timeshare at running back reduces any fantasy appeal from the offense as a whole.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::


Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Hawks (
25) at

Texans (
16)

Over/Under 41.0

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Key Matchups
Seahawks Run D
25th DVOA/26th Yards allowed per carry
Texans Run O
32nd DVOA/30th Yards per carry
Seahawks Pass D
17th DVOA/19th Yards allowed per pass
Texans Pass O
31st DVOA/25th Yards per pass
Texans Run D
24th DVOA/28th Yards allowed per carry
Seahawks Run O
23rd DVOA/7th Yards per carry
Texans Pass D
18th DVOA/27th Yards allowed per pass
Seahawks Pass O
8th DVOA/24th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By mjohnson86 >>
  • Seattle’s offense finally showed some signs of life in Week 13 against the 49ers.
  • Houston’s defensive weakness is clearly against the run, unfortunately Seattle has shown no consistency in that area.
  • This game has the lowest total on the slate and two very conservative head coaches.
  • Seattle still has a very slim chance to make the playoffs if they win out, while Russell Wilson trade rumors may force the Seahawks to finally let him loose as he has been asking them to do for years.

How seattle Will Try To Win ::

Seattle is throwing at the fourth-highest situation-neutral pass rate in the league over the last four weeks. They have poor run blocking and minimal talent in their backfield, making it nearly impossible to “establish the run” with any degree of success. Perhaps the most exciting thing about the Week 13 win over the 49ers was the fact that Wilson attempted 37 passes, his second-most of the season, in a game that the Seahawks won and led for much of the game. In the Seahawks’ other two victories with Wilson at QB this season, he attempted only 23 passes in each outing.

Perhaps the Texans’ porous run defense will cause Pete Carroll some excitement as a spot to rekindle the running game, but my take on this game comes from a much bigger macro viewpoint. This week, reports surfaced that Wilson would be open to trades to three specific teams this offseason (Saints, Giants, and Broncos). Reports like that in the middle of the season are rarely by accident, and there is usually a motive behind it. At this point, what do the Seahawks have to lose by finally going all-in and letting Wilson rip it? They are 4-8 with their only real chance of making the playoffs being winning out and are at a point where losing their franchise cornerstone is a very real possibility. For this season, the Seahawks have to win games and have games left against the Rams and Cardinals. After losing Jamaal Adams for the season, it is safe to say the Seahawks are going to need to be able to score a lot of points to beat those two teams. For the long-term, showing Wilson that you will concede and let him run the offense how he wants to may be the only way to salvage things at this point. Pete Carroll may not have it in him to do it, but for the good of the organization, the right way for Seattle to play in this game is clearly with an aggressive pass-first approach.

How houston Will Try To Win ::

Houston has been running the ball at a top-10 situation-neutral rate, despite terrible success in doing so — they are dead last in rushing offense DVOA, yards per carry, and rushing offense PFF grade. They play at a middle-of-the-pack pace based on their situation-neutral pace of play. The Texans defense has actually been solid from an effectiveness and efficiency standpoint this season, but their offense has been so bad and struggled to maintain drives this season which has led to teams eventually breaking the dam with volume.

On paper, the Seahawks present a clear “path of least resistance” through the air as they have a bottom-tier pass defense in almost any metric. They also just lost all-pro safety Jamal Adams for the season, and while coverage wasn’t necessarily the strong point of his game, losing a leader on the defense like that can lead to miscommunications and defensive lapses. Despite all of that, Houston is unlikely to be very aggressive through the air until they have to. Everything they have shown us is that they will attempt to make it an ugly game and keep Seattle close before hoping for a few good bounces to pull out a win late.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

Only one of the last seven Texans games has seen the teams combine for 40 or more points. However, in four of those games, Houston’s opponent scored over 30 points. The Seahawks are clearly the team most likely to control this game, and with the history of Pete Carroll teams, that brings up a scary proposition of a quick-moving, run-heavy game that doesn’t produce much. However, as explored earlier, there are a lot of factors that could point Seattle towards an aggressive approach from the outset that would spike this game’s production “on the way up.” Houston’s porous running game and talent deficient passing offense often leads to short drives and putting the ball in their opponents’ hands more often. Many of Seattle’s struggles this year have been caused by a lack of play volume, something that should not be an issue here against an opponent who is so poor at sustaining drives. Over the last six games, Texans opponents have averaged 69.7 plays per game. The biggest concern here is if Seattle struggles to put up points in the first half and the game stays relatively close, Carroll could revert to old habits and take a very conservative approach to ensure they escape with a win.

I also want to note that this game does have an outside chance of going far past expectations. The thought process that makes me see that angle is you have a team that is incentivized to be very aggressive through the air on one side of the ball, and the other offense is facing one of the worst pass defenses in the league, who also just lost the best player in their secondary.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By LexMiraglia10 >>

HOU QBs:

  • Tyrod has 2 pass TDs, 2 rush TDs, & 5 INT in 4 games since returning, with 0 games of 20+ DK pts
  • Tyrod is questionable with torn ligaments in his wrist
  • Mills has 9 TOs in 7 games
  • Mills has scored over 11 DK pts just twice, and one came after falling down 38-0 vs LAR
  • SEA has allowed the 9th fewest QB DK pts/g, and Cousins is the only QB to score more than 2 TDs vs SEA

HOU WRs:

  • Cooks in 6 games with Mills: 4:28:1 (half) // 9:112 // 5:47 // 3:23 // 9:89 // 5:21 // 6:83:1 // 3:38 (half)
  • Cooks in 5 games with Taylor: 5:132 // 5:50 (half) // 6:56 // 2:18 // 3:45:1 // 0:0 (half)
  • Moore & Conley both had 60+ yds vs NE, but Cooks is the only other HOU WR to have 60+ yds in a game this year (5 times)
  • After three 20+ DK pt scores to open the year, Cooks has just one (20.3) in the previous nine games
  • SEA has allowed the 9th fewest WR DK pts/g on the 7th fewest WR tg faced

HOU RBs:

  • SEA has allowed the 2nd most RB DK pts/g, behind the most RB rec yds
  • HOU RBs have just one combined game of 30+ rec yds in the entire season
  • Rush att leader since trading Ingram (5g): Burkhead (44) // Johnson (29) // Lindsay (12)
  • Ingram’s 14.5 DK pts in W1 on 26 rush att is the highest score from a HOU RB this year

Russell Wilson:

  • HOU has allowed 250 pass yds/g and 18 TDs to 14 INT
  • Russ has yet to throw for 250 yds in 4 games since returning (nor the 2 games before that)
  • Russ score 27.1 & 26.3 DK pts vs IND & TEN to start the year
  • Russ has averaged 14.7 DK pts in the 7 games since, with a high of just 22.6 DK pts
  • HOU ranks 6th in def pass DVOA

SEA WRs:

  • SEA WRs since Russ returned::
  • Metcalf: 3:26 // 4:31 // 1:13 // 5:60
  • Lockett: 2:23 // 4:115 // 3:96 // 7:68:1
  • Metcalf has actually out-targeted Lockett 28-26 in that span
  • WRs with 70+ yds vs HOU: Chark (86:1), MJJ (77:1) // Moore (126) // Diggs (114), Sanders (74) // Hilton (80) // Kupp (115:1), Van (88) // Waddle (83) // Westbrook (107) // Pittman (77)
  • HOU has allowed five 20+ DK pt scores to WRs
  • HOU has allowed the 3rd highest success rate to WRs

SEA RBs:

  • 19 RBs in 12 games have topped 50 total yds vs HOU
  • Without Collins last week, SEA distributed RB touches between Peterson (11), Penny (11), & Homer (8)
  • Penny’s 62 total yds was his first game of 20+ yds
  • Peterson gained just 16 yds on his 11 att

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Raiders (
19.25) at

Chiefs (
28.75)

Over/Under 48.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Raiders Run D
21st DVOA/18th Yards allowed per carry
Chiefs Run O
17th DVOA/7th Yards per carry
Raiders Pass D
32nd DVOA/17th Yards allowed per pass
Chiefs Pass O
1st DVOA/2nd Yards per pass
Chiefs Run D
17th DVOA/14th Yards allowed per carry
Raiders Run O
6th DVOA/4th Yards per carry
Chiefs Pass D
22nd DVOA/5th Yards allowed per pass
Raiders Pass O
16th DVOA/8th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By HILOW >>
  • Raiders running back Kenyan Drake was placed on IR following a gruesome ankle injury sustained in Week 13, while Jalen Richard was placed on the COVID list on Monday following a positive test on game day.
  • Raiders tight end Darren Waller missed Week 13’s contest but has been upgraded to day-to-day – the team is hopeful he can play this week, but he missed practice on Wednesday and should face an uphill battle.
  • Both defenses aim to mute deep passing and splash plays against through elevated zone rates and 2-high safety usage – volume reigns supreme from this one.
  • Josh Jacobs sets up for his highest opportunity total on the season should Jalen Richard miss.

How Las Vegas Will Try To Win ::

The Raiders are dealing with a slew of injuries on both sides of the ball, as all of Kenyan Drake (ankle, IR), Darren Waller (knee, back), Jalen Richard (COVID list), linebacker Denzel Perryman (ankle), defensive end Carl Nassib (knee), and defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson (back) failed to practice on Wednesday. We know this offense is built around an inefficient run game and deep passing (seventh-highest overall pass rate at 63%, Derek Carr holds the league’s fourth-most intended air yards this year), which should be affected by Kansas City’s defensive tendencies (high zone rates and 2-high safety usage, built to force teams into short passing over the middle of the field). Expect the Raiders to be forced to the air through Hunter Renfrow, the tight end position, and the running back position (both tight end and running back are somewhat up in the air at this time, as Darren Waller aims to return after a one-game absence and Jalen Richard aims to make it off the COVID list in time).

The Raiders running back situation is one of the more important injury situations to monitor this week, as Kenyan Drake was lost for the season with a broken ankle and Jalen Richard tested positive for COVID on Sunday, forcing him to miss Week 13’s game and putting his Week 14 status into question. In the absence of those two backs, Josh Jacobs handled his highest snap rate of the season and saw the most targets of his young career (nine). Should Richard miss again this week, Jacobs would be positioned to see his heaviest workload of the season against an opponent that has surrendered 24.8 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields. The pure rushing matchup yields an above-average 4.39 net-adjusted line yards metric. As previously discussed, the Chiefs force pass game usage to the short-to-intermediate middle of the field, increasing the likelihood that Jacobs replicates his increased pass game usage this week (the Chiefs have faced the 10th-most targets to opposing running backs this season at 94). Should Richard return in time, expect a more natural 65/35% split in snap rates and running back opportunities, lowering the floor and ceiling (and our interest) of both members of this backfield.

A big part of the fantasy allure of this Raiders team revolves around the status of Darren Waller, who was upgraded from week-to-week to day-to-day early this week. That said, he failed to practice on Wednesday and should be considered questionable at this time. With Waller out most of the last two weeks, slot man Hunter Renfrow has led the team in targets and production, catching 17 of 19 targets and eclipsing 100 yards receiving in each game. Furthermore, the matchup against the Chiefs tilts expected pass production towards the areas of the field that Renfrow works, once again making him a high floor option (should Waller miss). Additionally, similar to last week, we should once again expect Foster Moreau to stay in to block more often than not against a Chiefs unit that blitzes at the eighth-highest rate in the league (29.2%), further funneling expected pass production. We spoke to the increased pass game usage for Josh Jacobs above, who would likely stand to match or surpass his inflated target total from last week here considering the matchup. The perimeter receiver trio of Bryan Edwards, Zay Jones, and DeSean Jackson are all unlikely to see both volume and efficiency in their downfield roles against the Chiefs.

HoW kansas city Will Try To Win ::

Jared Goff currently has the lowest completed air yards per completion value in the league at 3.8 – no surprise here. Ben Roethlisberger currently has the second-lowest completed air yards per completion in the league at 4.7 – again, no surprise here. Patrick Mahomes ranks third to last in the league in completed air yards per completion at 4.9 but ranks first in the league in total intended air yards. This means that Mahomes and the Chiefs are still attempting downfield passes but have been far less efficient when targeting receivers greater than 15 yards downfield. But what has this meant for the offense as a whole? For one, Tyreek Hill’s average depth of target is over two full yards shallower this season when compared to last, with a higher rate of targets coming within five yards of the line of scrimmage. Secondly, Mecole Hardman and his 6.4 aDOT have fallen out of favor in this offense, paving the way for Byron Pringle and Josh Gordon to see increased playing time in more downfield roles. Finally, Travis Kelce currently holds his lowest catch rate in over three seasons (66.7%) due primarily to opposing defenses not being stretched as much vertically. Furthermore, from a macro perspective, this is still the most efficient offense in the league (first in yards per drive, first in plays per drive, and first in drive success rate), but they have struggled mightily with turnovers (second to last in turnovers per drive) this season. Expect an up-tempo offense (third-fastest overall pace of play and fourth-fastest situation-neutral pace of play) built to put a strain on an opposing defense for the duration of the game.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire returned from an extended absence in Week 11 and has played in a near-even split with Darrel Williams over the previous two games. Expect that trend to continue as the team searches for ways to get the more dynamic abilities of Williams into the fold, particularly in the passing game. CEH has averaged 15.5 running back opportunities per game over that stretch, while Williams has seen eight running back opportunities in each of the past two games. The matchup on the ground should be considered a net-positive, yielding a moderate 4.36 net-adjusted line yards metric against a Raiders defense allowing 28.2 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields (fourth-most in the league).

We’ve talked about this before in other places around the site, but it seems the team has lost its interest in the potential of Mecole Hardman, who has seen his snap rate dwindle to under 20% each of the past two games. The direct beneficiary of that move has been Byron Pringle, whose solid 12.4 aDOT and 4.8 average YAC highlight what Kansas City wanted Hardman to be (an additional downfield option). Demarcus Robinson has even seen his snap rate decrease of late as the team looks for more opportunities to get Josh Gordon more involved, averaging only 38.4% of the offensive snaps over the last five games. The big picture here, however, is that the Chiefs are mixing-and-matching offensive personnel more than they have in recent seasons, with only Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and Byron Pringle now seeing near every-down snap rates, and even then, it has not been uncommon for Cheetah and Kelce to see snap rates in the low to mid 70% range. The Chiefs continue to place games in Patrick Mahomes’ hands, averaging the second-most pass attempts per game at 41.3 this season, in addition to averaging 281.1 pass yards per game. We talked about the changing dynamics with respect to the lack of deep passing efficiency above, and, when compared to the matchup with a Raiders defense that aims to hide talent deficiencies with defensive scheme by playing at elevated zone alignment rates and forcing teams shallow and to the middle of the field, we should be hunting for volume amongst the Kansas City pass-catchers this week. Surprise, surprise, Tyreek Hill (in his new, lower-aDOT role) and Travis Kelce set up well for that volume.

Likeliest Game flow ::

Due to both available personnel and matchup, the Raiders are highly unlikely to be able to generate the splash plays that they have built their offense around this season. Furthermore, expect the Chiefs to force Las Vegas to march the field in order to beat them, creating additional opportunities for stalled drives and turnover generation. Now consider the fact that the Chiefs defense is finally playing up to the level we expected coming into the season (they have allowed 17 or fewer points against in each of their last five games – against the Giants, Packers (Jordan Love), this same Raiders team, Cowboys, and Broncos), and we’re left with a likeliest game flow that has Kansas City controlling the tempo, flow, and game environment (which has been rather unusual this season). This should force the Raiders into increased short-area passing to Hunter Renfrow, either Darren Waller or Foster Moreau, and Josh Jacobs (who might be the most intriguing of the bunch, assuming Jalen Richard is also out). 


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By Alex88 >>

OVERVIEW

  • Tied for the third highest Vegas total in Week 14 (48.5)
  • Down five points since opening
  • KC’s implied total of 29 is the highest on the week
  • LV’s implied total of 19.5 is the seventh lowest
  • Third highest spread of the week (-9.5)
  • LV has scored 16 or fewer points in four of their last five games
  • KC has scored 22 or fewer points in five of their last six games
  • KC’s only game above 22 points was their Week 10 matchup against LV, in which they won 41-14
  • Per numberFire, both teams are about average in adjusted seconds per play (KC at 29.1, LV at 29.3) but rank highly in adjusted pass rate (KC at 7th with 61.7%, LV at 6th with 63.8%)

Derek Carr

  • Ranks ninth in PFF passing grade
  • Career high in yardage (305.3)
  • Ranks 12th in DK ppg (19.2)
  • In seven career road games @ KC, averaging just 12.18 DK pts
  • KC ranks 29th in DK ppg (21.2)
  • Started the season giving up 30+ DK pts each game from Weeks 2-5
  • No QB has scored 20+ vs. KC since Week 7

LV Passing Attack

  • Snap totals since Week 9: Zay Jones 257 // Bryan Edwards 249 // Hunter Renfrow 236 // Foster Moreau 187 // Darren Waller 175 // DeSean Jackson 91
  • Target totals since Week 9: Renfrow 41 // Waller 31 // Jones 21 // Edwards 14 // Moreau 10 // Jackson 6
  • Renfrow’s DK log since Week 9: 17.9 // 17.6 // 7.5 // 24.6 // 22.2
  • He started the year with a salary of $3,500 (and scored 13 pts)
  • His $6,100 Week 14 salary is a career high
  • Jones has yet to hit 15 DK pts
  • Edwards scored 17.8 vs. KC earlier this season
  • Jackson has seen 1, 0, 4, and 1 targets
  • He turned his 4 targets into a 22.2 DK total @ DAL
  • KC ranks 12th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (35.3)
  • Notable opposing WR scores: Emmanuel Sanders 20.4 // Devonta Smith 22.2 // Marquise Brown 26.3 // AJ Brown 30.3 // Mike Williams 36.2
  • Waller may return in Week 14
  • His 13.5 DK ppg ranks fifth
  • Among all TEs, Waller ranks third in air yard market share, fourth in target share, and second in WOPR
  • His $6,400 Week 14 salary is a $1,500 cost reduction from his Week 1 salary
  • Moreau scored 18 DK pts vs. PHI in Week 7 when Waller missed
  • He managed just 4.4 pts in Week 13 without him
  • His salary went up by $1,300
  • KC ranks 25th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (15.3)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Zach Ertz 12 // Ricky Seals-Jones 15.8 // Dallas Goedert 16.6 // Dawson Knox 23.7

LV RBs

  • Kenyan Drake was lost for the year in Week 13
  • Josh Jacobs proceeded to have his second straight 50+ snap game and a career high nine targets
  • His 24 touches in Week 13 were the second highest by an RB for the Raiders all season (Peyton Barber had 26 in relief of Jacobs in Week 3)
  • He’s averaging 15.2 DK ppg
  • KC ranks 23rd in DK ppg allowed to RBs (26)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Kenneth Gainwell 20.9 // Austin Ekeler 22.7 // Nick Chubb 23.1 // Javonte Williams 32.8

Patrick Mahomes

  • Ranks 24th in PFF passing grade
  • As a starter, averaging lows in completion% (64.6%), yardage (282), and TD% (5.2%)
  • Highest INT% (2.5%) as a starter
  • 22.4 DK ppg ranks eighth this season
  • Versus LV, he averages 29.27 DK ppg
  • Mahomes began the season with a DK salary range of $8,100-8,400 during the first seven weeks
  • Week 14 is the first time since then that his salary has been $8,000+
  • LV ranks 23rd in DK ppg allowed to QBs (19.8)
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Teddy Bridgewater 25.26 // Dak Prescott 28.3 // Patrick Mahomes 39.24

KC Passing Attack

  • Snap share: Travis Kelce 84% // Tyreek Hill 78.7% // Demarcus Robinson 57.8% // Mecole Hardman 53.6% // Byron Pringle 42.5%
  • Target share: Hill 25.7% // Kelce 21.2% // Hardman 12.1% // Pringle 7.3% // Robinson 5.7%
  • Among all WRs, Hill ranks 11th in air yard market share, sixth in target share, and 10th in WOPR
  • Hill’s 4.2 pts last week were the lowest he’s had in a normal snap share game since 2017
  • He averages 19.1 vs. LV
  • Hardman had 42 snaps in Week 9
  • Since then, he’s combined for 45 snaps across three weeks
  • He had six targets in Week 9
  • Since then, he’s combined for seven targets across three weeks
  • Pringle has had 11 targets in the past three weeks
  • Robinson has had 6
  • LV ranks fourth in DK ppg allowed to WRs (31.8)
  • Notable opposing WRs (Cedrick Wilson 20.4 // Diontae Johnson 22.5 // Courtland Sutton 23.4 // Tyreek Hill 27.5
  • Among all TEs, Kelce ranks fourth in air yard market share, third in target share, and third in WOPR
  • His 16.6 DK ppg ranks first
  • In 15 career matchups vs. LV, he averages 17.54 pts
  • His Week 14 cost of $7,400 is a reduction from a season high $8,500 in Week 2
  • LV ranks 32nd in DK ppg allowed to TEs (18.9)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Dalton Schultz 15.6 // Mike Gesicki 18.6 // Jared Cook 19 // Travis Kelce 22.9 // Noah Fant 24.7

KC RBs

  • Clyde Edwards-Helaire returned in Week 11, before a Week 12 bye, and had 32 snaps, 2 targets, and 14 touches
  • In Week 13, he led the RBs in snaps (29), tied in targets with Darrel Williams (3), and led in touches (17 to 8)
  • He’s averaging 12.47 DK ppg
  • DK log: 10.2 // 3.6 // 20.9 // 22.4 // 3.4 // 15.6 // 11.2
  • His $6,100 Week 14 salary is the first time he’s been above $6k since Week 2
  • LV ranks 29th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (28.4)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Antonio Gibson 22.1 // Joe Mixon 27.3 // Darrel Williams 32.4 // Austin Ekeler 32.5

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Saints (
23.5) at

Jets (
18.5)

Over/Under 42.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Saints Run D
21st DVOA/22nd Yards allowed per carry
Jets Run O
21st DVOA/19th Yards per carry
Saints Pass D
11th DVOA/9th Yards allowed per pass
Jets Pass O
25th DVOA/11th Yards per pass
Jets Run D
9th DVOA/6th Yards allowed per carry
Saints Run O
22nd DVOA/19th Yards per carry
Jets Pass D
6th DVOA/4th Yards allowed per pass
Saints Pass O
19th DVOA/7th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By mjohnson86 >>
  • New Orleans has gone on an incredible tail spin after a promising start to the season. After a huge win over the Bucs to move to 5-2, they have lost five straight games.
  • The Saints have a clear “pass funnel” defense, while the Jets have a clear “everything funnel” defense.
  • This is the first game the Saints will play this year with Alvin Kamara healthy and Taysom Hill starting, adding guesswork to the projections for this game.
  • This game has some interesting strategy angles to consider based on salaries and expected ownership.

How new orleans Will Try To Win ::

The statistics this season for the Saints are so hard to judge in this spot because of the fact they are on their third starting QB, and he (Taysom Hill) is such a unique player who does things so differently than the other quarterbacks on the team. Week 13 was Hill’s first start, and he performed kind of how we expected — shaky as a passer while “getting there” in fantasy through rushing production and volume. While the Saints did pass at a high rate in that game, that likely had to do with the fact they were trailing for most of the game rather than an approach we should expect going forward.

While the Jets pass defense is nothing to write home about, their run defense is equally bad or perhaps even worse. They rank in the bottom three in the league by most metrics against both the run and the pass. Alvin Kamara is logging full practices after missing four weeks, and Taysom Hill has an injury to a finger on his throwing hand. Those factors, along with their lack of talent in their receiving corps, should make this game plan pretty straightforward for Sean Payton — run it until they prove they can stop you. The strength of the Saints run defense coupled with the struggles of Zach Wilson in the passing game make it unlikely the Jets will be able to put up any amount of points that would push the Saints away from their gameplan, making it almost a certainty that New Orleans will try to win this game behind their offensive line and their two-headed monster running game. It does seem likely that the Saints will have some downfield attempts if/when the Jets sell out to stop the running game, and they also have some players who can make big plays after the catch (as evidenced by Deonte Harris’ 70-yard touchdown reception against the Cowboys), but guessing if, how, and who will be the recipient of such a play is likely a fool’s errand.

How new york Will Try To Win ::

The Jets are almost certain to struggle running the ball, as their line is overmatched against the defensive front of the Saints, and their healthy running backs are a talent deficient group unlikely to overcome such a difficult matchup through either volume or efficiency. The Saints defense forces teams to become more pass-heavy, but with injuries looming in the receiving corps (Corey Davis is out for the season and Elijah Moore has yet to practice) and Zach Wilson’s troubles this season, it is hard to see the Jets really turning things up in that area. Tevin Coleman is looking doubtful to play with a concussion, further diluting the backfield for the Jets and leaving Ty Johnson, La’Mical Perine, and Austin Walter to do the work. It seems like the Jets will be very conservative in this spot by mixing up usage of their running backs and focusing on short-area throws for Wilson to protect him from an aggressive Saints defense. The Jets will likely be careful on offense and hope their defense can keep things close against what should be a predictable opponent.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

The Saints are likely to control this game as the Jets will struggle mightily to sustain drives and put points on the board. The Saints will likely take an extremely run-heavy approach for as long as they can and will simply impose their will on the Jets and pull away at a slow pace. The likely run-first focus for the Saints coupled with the difficulty of moving the ball for the Jets will lead to a significant lead for the Saints in the time of possession and field position battles. This will likely also result in a faster-moving game as the clock will constantly be running, limiting the overall play volume. The Saints are much more likely than the Jets to truly take control of the game, but the likeliest outcome is a low-scoring game that doesn’t get too far out of hand in either direction.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By LexMiraglia10 >>

Zach Wilson:

  • NOR still ranks 12th in def pass DVOA despite some down weeks vs good QBs
  • NOR has 14 INT on the season
  • Wilson has thrown just 6 TDs to 11 INT
  • Last week was Wilson’s first of 20 DK pts and it was still just 22 DK pts (thanks to a rush TD)

NYJ WRs:

  • Tg since Bye: Moore (6, 6, 8, 6, 11, 8, 12) // Crowder (6, 9, 7, 6, 7, 1, 6)
  • In the last six games, Moore is averaging 5.7 rec for 76.5 yds, 0.8 TDs
  • Moore’s low & high DK scores during span are 9.3 & 32.6, with three scores of 20+ DK pts
  • Crowder is averaging just 4.5 rec for 42.2 yds during that span, with a high DK score of 16.4
  • 16 WRs have 60+ yds vs NOR this season
  • NOR has allowed the 4th highest yds/att to WRs
  • No team has faced WR targets at a higher rate than NOR
  • While Moore predominantly plays outside WR, he has spent about 26% of snaps in slot, where Lattimore has spent just 5% of snaps

NYJ RBs:

  • RB touches since Carter went down (2g): Coleman (27 att, 7 tg) // Johnson (7 att, 5 tg) // Walter (10 att, 3 tg)
  • NOR ranks 1st in def rush DVOA and has allowed the 3rd lowest success rate on RB tg

Taysom Hill:

  • NYJ allowed 2 pass TDs in the first 4 games
  • NYJ have allowed 18 pass TDs in the last 8 games
  • NYJ have fallen to last in def pass DVOA
  • Taysom will attempt to play through a throwing hand finger injury sustained last week
  • Taysom passing in starts: 233:0 // 78:0:1 // 232:2 // 291:2:1 // 264:2:4
  • Taysom rushing in starts: 10:49:2 // 10:44:2 // 14:83 // 5:33 // 11:101
  • QB rushing vs NYJ: Darnold (TD) // Teddy (24) // Wentz (13) // Allen (3) // Tyrod (30)
  • Every QB has scored 2+ TDs vs NYJ since Week 4
  • Taysom has scored 2+ TDs in every start

NOR WRs:

  • Leading WR Deonte Harris just began his 3-wk suspension
  • Harris had been averaging 6.2 tg/g over the last six weeks
  • Tre’Quan Smith & Callaway are the next leading target-getters on NOR
  • Callaway hasn’t topped 40 yds since WK 5 when he caught a Hail-Mary TD
  • 14.4 DK pts is the most Smith has scored since returning
  • Callaway’s hail-mary score game is the only 20+ pt DK score by a NOR WR in 2021
  • Jets have allowed an average amount of WR DK pts/g thanks to the 6th fewest WR TDs allowed (9) and 4th fewest faced WR tg

NOR RBs:

  • NYJ have allowed 36.9 DK pts/g to RBs; next closest is 31.9 DK pts/g
  • The Jets have allowed the 3rd most RB rush yds/g, most RB rush TDs, 4th most RB rec/g, & 2nd most RB rec yds/g
  • Four RBs have had 60+ rec yds vs NYJ (two more of 40+) (four more of 30+)
  • Kamara’s total touches: 24 // 14 // 28 // 26 // 24 // 31 // 23 // 20
  • RB touches w/ Taysom in 2020::
  • AK: (13 att, 1 tg) // (11, 2) // (15, 3) // (11, 10)
  • Lat: (12 att, 2 tg) // (19, 1) // (5, 2) // (4, 1)
  • NOR scored 8 rush TDs in Taysom’s 4 starts: (4 Taysom, 2 AK, 2 Murray)
  • In Taysom’s first 2021 start, NOR RBs went: Ingram (10:28, 1:-2), TyMont (4:21, 4:9)
  • NOR was down to third stringers on the offensive line with 3 starters & 2 backups injured (Ram & Armstead still questionable)
  • Two of AK’s three lowest touch totals this year came after Ingram joined, but he is now on Covid list

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Falcons (
19.25) at

Panthers (
21.75)

Over/Under 41.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Falcons Run D
23rd DVOA/17th Yards allowed per carry
Panthers Run O
10th DVOA/10th Yards per carry
Falcons Pass D
30th DVOA/28th Yards allowed per pass
Panthers Pass O
30th DVOA/8th Yards per pass
Panthers Run D
18th DVOA/15th Yards allowed per carry
Falcons Run O
4th DVOA/4th Yards per carry
Panthers Pass D
26th DVOA/13th Yards allowed per pass
Falcons Pass O
17th DVOA/12th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By mjohnson86 >>
  • Atlanta has a respectable win/loss record, but the fourth worst point differential in the league.
  • Carolina is coming out of the bye week and will likely look like a new team in their first game with Cam Newton at QB and no Christian McCaffery.
  • The Panthers defense is very good, especially against lower competition and in positive or neutral game scripts.

How atlanta Will Try To Win ::

On paper, Atlanta enters Week 14 with a 5-7 record and within striking distance of the playoff race. In reality, the Falcons have a 5-2 record in one-score games, with all of those wins coming against teams with a losing record. To put it simply, the Falcons only have a chance in games against poor teams, and they have run hot in those spots pulling out some close games.

In the first game between these two teams, Carolina won an ugly 19-13 game and controlled Atlanta’s offense pretty much the entire game. They gave significant attention and focus to Kyle Pitts, and their swarming defense kept the Falcons from getting any sort of running game going as well. Atlanta plays with a top-10 pace of play and also throws the ball at a top-10 situation-neutral rate this season. Those statistics are likely to stay consistent in this matchup as there is nothing about this matchup that points to a high likelihood of success in the running game, and the Falcons don’t have a great scheme or personnel to move the ball making tempo their best chance of success. This is just a very difficult matchup for the Falcons, as their running game has been so inconsistent and unreliable this season, and the Panthers have one of the top pass defenses in the league. The Falcons will have to find ways to get the ball in the hands of Cordarrelle Patterson and Kyle Pitts as often as possible if they are going to have any offensive success here.

How carolina Will Try To Win ::

In the first game between these two teams, Carolina went with a very run-heavy game plan of 47 rushes and only 25 pass attempts. That was a game on the road and with Sam Darnold at quarterback. Now the Panthers have Cam Newton at quarterback and are at home. Even though there is different personnel and the Panthers just made a change at offensive coordinator, it is hard to see a drastic change in approach from the first matchup as Cam is clearly a bigger threat on the ground than in the passing game at this point in his career (as evidenced by his dreadful passing performance against the Dolphins where he completed only five of 21 pass attempts). The Carolina offensive approach will likely be very clear and direct in this matchup, with a heavy focus on the running game using their backs and Cam in various ways. In the passing game, we should expect them to keep things easy for Cam and likely try to find ways to involve DJ Moore in more short area work now that CMC is out for the season. Coming out of the bye week, the offensive focus of the Panthers will likely be leveraging Cam’s strengths and hiding his weaknesses while finding creative ways to get the ball in the hands of their best remaining playmaker.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

This game will likely have a close resemblance to the first matchup between these teams. The Panthers are most likely to control a low-scoring game where the Falcons will have trouble moving the ball, and the Panthers will approach things in a very conservative manner that is unlikely to be explosive or lead to a high-scoring game. The Panthers are the slower-paced team and will run the ball at a high rate, while the Falcons are likely to have a lot of short drives, leading to a higher percentage of the play volume on the Panthers side and also keeping the clock running and shortening the game. The best chance of this game exceeding total points expectations is likely to come from turnovers from either side that give short fields and easy points to the other team. The Carolina defense is very capable of forcing turnovers, and Cam has shown that he is liable to give the ball away very easily, even against a poor defense like Atlanta’s, increasing the volatility of projections in this game as turnovers always have the ability to significantly change the environment of a football game.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By LexMiraglia10 >>

Cam Newton:

  • ATL vs CAR finishing combined totals in Rhule era: 39, 42, 32
  • CAR just fired their OC from the start of 2020 with an explanation of wanting to run the ball more
  • Cam’s first two starts::
  • Passing: 189:2 // 92:0:2
  • Rushing: 46:1 // 5:1
  • ATL has only held 3/12 QBs under 220 yds
  • QB rushing vs ATL: Hurts (62) // Jones (39) // Heinicke (43) // Tua (29) // Darnold (66) // Dak (TD) // Lawrence (39)
  • Cam rushed for 30+ yds in 8 games in 2020 (38, 46, 47, 48, 54, 75, 76, 79) and 12 rush TDs

CAR WRs:

  • Moore has between 7-13 tg in every game
  • Moore’s first four games (DK pts): 15.4 // 21.9 // 23.5 // 34.9
  • Moore’s last eight games (DK pts): 8.8 // 11.9 // 13.3 // 9.9 // 7.6 // 6.4 // 16 // 17.3
  • 20+ pt DK scores with Cam in NE last year: Edelman (28.9) // Meyers (31.9, 21.1) // Byrd (29.3)
  • Evans, McLaurin, Lamb, Godwin are the only WRs with 20+ DK pts vs ATL; the first three scored 2 TDs and Godwin caught 15 passes
  • Smith, Evans (x2), McLaurin, Waddle, Lamb, Godwin are the only WRs with 70+ rec yds vs ATL
  • CAR WRs in first ATL matchup: Moore (59) // Robby (0) // Smith (-2)

CAR RBs:

  • CMC back on IR & Freeman gone, so Hubbard & Abdullah are the only others with usage
  • Hubbard led the backfield in CMC’s previous absence, but Abdullah out-touched him with CMC playing
  • Hubbard’s rush att as starter: 13 // 24 // 16 // 12 // 24
  • Hubbard’s targets as starter:  2 // 6 // 3 // 5 // 2
  • Hubbard’s yds as starter: 71 // 134 // 65 // 56 // 91
  • Hubard’s 26 touches for 91 yds vs ATL was his last start
  • Sanders (74), Hubbard (82), Robinson (86) are the only RBs to crack 70 rush yds vs ATL
  • Seven other RBs have reached 50 rush yds, & seven RBs have reached 30 rec yds vs ATL
  • ATL has allowed a RB TD in 9/12 games
  • Hubbard scored just twice in his five starts

Matt Ryan:

  • Ryan has 22+ DK pts in 5/12 games, with highs of 29 & 31.5 DK pts
  • Ryan has sub-13 DK pts in six of the other seven (7.4, 8.1, 2.7, 4.1, 11.2, 12.1)
  • Ryan’s DK scores since losing Ridley: 8.1, 31.5, 2.7, 4.1, 11.2, 12.1
  • Ryan’s pass yds since losing Ridley: 146 // 343 // 117 // 153 // 190 // 297
  • CAR has held seven QBs under 200 pass yds, and the others have thrown for 258, 373, 206, 230
  • CAR ranks 5th in def pass DVOA and has allowed the 4th fewest QB DK pts/g
  • Ryan threw for just 146 yds, TD, 2 INT vs CAR
  • Ryan vs CAR in 2020: 226:0:1 // 281:0:1, rush TD

ATL WRs:

  • CAR has allowed the 6th fewest WR DK pts/g
  • Gage has 7+ rec in just 8 career games (2 this year)
  • Last week’s 130 yds was Gage’s career high, and only second 100 yd game of career
  • McLaurin is the only WR since 2020 to reach 100 yds vs CAR without 7+ rec to get there (Evans, Keenan, Ridley, Julio, Tyreek, Cooks, Thielen, Waddle)
  • CAR’s only 20+ pt WRs allowed in 2021: Davis (5:97:2) // Cooks (9:112) // Thielen (11:126:1) // McLaurin (5:103:1) // Waddle (9:137:1)
  • Since returning (7 g), Gage has four games of 60+ yds (67, 64, 62, 130), but also two games with 0 yds in each
  • Gage didn’t even receive a target in the first matchup vs CAR

Kyle Pitts:

  • CAR has allowed the 6th lowest success rate & 3rd lowest yds/att to TEs
  • Notable TEs vs CAR: Schultz (6:58:1) // Goedert (2:28) // Conklin (3:71) // Engram (6:44) // Pitts (2:13) // Henry (2:19:1) // Ertz (4:46) // Gesicki (3:17)
  • Pitts targets: 8, 6, 3, 9, 10, 8, 6, 7, 7, 5, 6, 7
  • Pitts without Ridley: 9:119:1 // 2:13 // 3:62 // 4:60 // 3:29 // 2:26 // 4:48

ATL RBs:

  • CPatt’s rush att first four games vs last six full games: (7, 7, 7, 6 // 14, 14, 9, 9, 16, 13)
  • CPatt has 75+ yds in 6/10 full games, and 90+ in the last three (136, 135, 96)
  • CPatt has just three games all season below 16 DK pts: (8.7, 23.9, 16.2, 34.6, 18.4, 14.1, 18.2, 22.6, 30.5, 12.6)
  • CPatt has 9 TDs on the season, with three multi-TD games
  • CPatt has 5+ rec in 6/10 full games (2 // 5 // 6 // 5 // 7 // 2 // 5 // 6 // 2 // 3)
  • His rec yds in the games with 5+ rec: 58:1 // 82 // 82:3 // 60 // 37:1 // 126
  • Davis has yet to top 75 yds on the season, with a rushing yds high of 53
  • Last week was Davis’s best score of the season and he didn’t even crack 17 DK pts
  • Only RBs with 75+ yds vs CAR: Zeke (143:1) // Cook (143:1) // Stevenson (106), Bolden (81) // Gibson (95)
  • CAR has allowed just 7 RB rush TDs
  • CAR has allowed the lowest success rate & yds/att on RB targets
  • CPatt (37:1) & Stevenson (44) are the only RBs with 30+ rec yds vs CAR

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 1:00pm Eastern

Ravens (
20.5) at

Browns (
23.5)

Over/Under 44.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Ravens Run D
7th DVOA/3rd Yards allowed per carry
Browns Run O
8th DVOA/13th Yards per carry
Ravens Pass D
11th DVOA/13th Yards allowed per pass
Browns Pass O
11th DVOA/17th Yards per pass
Browns Run D
30th DVOA/26th Yards allowed per carry
Ravens Run O
2nd DVOA/3rd Yards per carry
Browns Pass D
15th DVOA/19th Yards allowed per pass
Ravens Pass O
16th DVOA/17th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By papy324 >>
  • These are both slow-paced, run-oriented teams.
  • Devonta Freeman is mispriced for his role.
  • Lamar Jackson is likely to face a higher than normal blitz rate.
  • Austin Hooper offers cheap TE appeal, especially if all the other Browns TEs sit.

How baltimore Will Try To Win ::

The 8-4 Ravens come into a division game at the top of an AFC North that is one of the most closely contested divisions in the league. All four teams are within two games of the Ravens, and if they drop this one, they’ll almost certainly give up control of their playoff future. This game has huge implications for the Ravens as we enter the home stretch of the 2021 season.

Harbaugh’s Ravens have been playing their usual brand of football, but in the past four games, their offense has sputtered to a halt. During the first eight games of the season, the Ravens scored over 30 points four times and were held under 20 points only twice. During the past four weeks, the Ravens haven’t broken 20 points in any game, with their low water mark coming in a 10-point game against the Dolphins. What changed? The Ravens are still playing slow (29th situation neutral pace), and are still featuring Lamar Jackson, the difference is in how defenses are choosing to play against Jackson. The past four weeks, after the league saw Miami play their natural style and have success, defensive coordinators have started to blitz Jackson. Beating the blitz requires making quick decisions from the pocket, and then delivering accurate passes into one-on-one man coverage. Consistently blitzing guys like Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers is suicide because they’re excellent decision-makers, accurate passes, and you’re essentially just taking players out of coverage. Consistently blitzing guys like Cam Newton or Lamar Jackson is another story. Harbaugh needs to figure out a way to adjust to all the heat Jackson is seeing, which may prove difficult because of Jackson’s weaknesses as a pocket passer. Expect Baltimore to try and adapt to what will likely be a blitz-heavy defensive game plan from Cleveland.

How cleveland Will Try To Win ::

The Browns had high hopes coming into the year, and they are now sitting at 6-6 in the basement of a tight division. They must feel as if this is a must-win game. The Browns were curiously scheduled Ravens/Bye/Ravens. After losing their first meeting, a loss here would leave the Browns down three games, and losing the tiebreaker with only four games left would all but eliminate them from the division. A win would even the season series to 1-1 and put the Browns just one game out of first place in the division. This is as close to a playoff game for the Browns as you can have at this point in the season.

The Browns schedule created almost a month-long period where they’ve had nothing to do other than focus on the Ravens. The Browns want to run the ball, but they are facing a defense that is stout on the ground (5th in DVOA) and weak through the air (27th in DVOA), creating a clear pass funnel. The Browns are typically more of a “do what we do” team, but in Week 12 the Browns departed from their normal approach and threw the ball 37 times, their highest total of the season. The game was close throughout, and both Hunt/Chubb were healthy, so this appears to be the result of a pass-oriented game plan. The Browns took the right approach, but it didn’t work, as they only put up 10 points. It’s commendable that the Browns tried to adapt for their opponent, but since the league is so results-oriented, and the result wasn’t what they wanted, there is a good chance they will revert to their ground and pound style. Expect the Browns to try and establish the run, while mixing in slightly more passing than usual.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

This game has a tiny total of 42 as both sides can be expected to the run ball, and the more explosive offense (Ravens) has looked like the league figured them out the past four weeks, including a 16-point performance against this Browns team in Week 12. The most likely game flow has both offenses struggling, with the Browns trying to lean on their running game more than they did in Week 12.  This game is likely to be competitive throughout, with the winner being determined by one score late in the fourth quarter.


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Tributaries ::

DFS+ Interpretation ::

By Alex88 >>

OVERVIEW

  • Third lowest total in Week 14 (42.5)
  • Dropped four points since opening
  • BAL has scored fewer than 20 pts for four straight weeks
  • CLE has scored fewer than 14 pts for three straight weeks
  • Per numberFire, BAL ranks 29th in adjusted seconds per play (31.2) and 28th in adjusted pass rate (52.2%)
  • CLE ranks 30th in adjusted seconds per play (31.5) and 24th in adjusted pass rate (54.4%)
  • Both teams average 147.1 rushing yards per game

Lamar Jackson

  • Ranks 26th in PFF passing grade
  • Career high in INT% (3.4%)
  • Worst TD% since rookie year (4.2%)
  • Ranks fifth in DK ppg (24.3)
  • Hasn’t scored 20 pts since Week 9
  • CLE ranks ninth in DK ppg allowed to QBs (18.8)
  • An opposing QB hasn’t scored 20+ DK pts against CLE since Week 6
  • Lamar threw four picks against CLE two weeks ago

BAL Passing Attack

  • Second highest usage rate of 21 personnel (29%) and highest rate of 22 personnel (18%)
  • Third lowest usage rate of 11 personnel (37%)
  • Snap share: Mark Andrews 71.8% // Marquise Brown 69.8% // Rashod Bateman 58.7% // Devin Duvernay 54% // Sammy Watkins 44.3%
  • Target share: Brown 23.3% // Andrews 23.1% // Watkins 10.8% // Bateman 9.2% // Duvernay 8.5%
  • Among all WRs, Brown ranks 25th in air yard target share, 12th in target share, and 19th in WOPR
  • His 17.5 DK ppg ranks 10th
  • Brown’s seven targets in Week 13 were the first time he received less than 10 since Week 6
  • His salary has ranged from $5,100 in Week 1 to a high of $7,100 in the Week 11 game that he missed ($6,300 in Week 14)
  • Watkins received six targets in Week 13, his most since Week 4
  • He has yet to his 15 DK pts
  • Watkins returned to a full time role in Week 11, but Bateman’s snaps nearly matched him and have continued to do so
  • Bateman’s targets have decreased from eight in Week 9 to one in Week 13 (season low)
  • Duvernay has just one double digit DK performance this season
  • CLE ranks 10th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (34.7)
  • Only two WRs have scored 20+ DK pts since Week 6
  • Among all TEs, Andrews ranks second in air yard market share and target share, and first in WOPR
  • His 15.4 DK ppg ranks fourth
  • CLE ranks 14th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (12.4)
  • Andrews scored 16.5 vs. CLE two weeks ago
  • Six TEs have scored double digits vs. CLE

BAL RBs

  • Devonta Freeman has led all RBs in snaps every week since Week 6
  • He’s led in targets in every game he received at least one
  • His eight targets were the second most among all positions in Week 13
  • DK log since Week 6: 11.3 // 12.9 // 16.3 // 8.8 // 20 // 7 // 20.7
  • CLE ranks 11th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (22.4)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Najee Harris 21 // D’Andre Swift 25.6 // Joe Mixon 28 // Rhamondre Stevenson 30.4 // Austin Ekeler 33.9

Baker Mayfield

  • Tied for 27th in PFF passing grade
  • Career lows in yardage (219.4) and TD% (3.5%)
  • Averaging 14.36 DK ppg
  • Only one 20+ performance (26 @ CLE)
  • That’s also the only time he has scored 4x his salary, unsurprisingly
  • BAL ranks 25th in DK ppg allowed to QBs (20.1)
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Kirk Cousins 21.58 // Carson Wentz 26.58 // Derek Carr 28 // Patrick Mahomes 28.02 // Joe Burrow 30.64

CLE Passing Attack

  • Led the league in 13 personnel usage rate (21%)
  • Snap counts since OBJ left (Week 9): Jarvis Landry 183 // Austin Hooper 174 // David Njoku 160 // Donovan Peoples-Jones 124 // Rashard Higgins 82
  • Target counts since Week 9: Landry 28 // Hooper 17 // Njoku 16 // DPJ 13 // Higgins 6
  • Landry is the only player to hit double digit targets all season (Weeks 8 & 12)
  • He’s yet to hit 20 DK pts this season
  • His salary rose by $600 from Week 13 to Week 14
  • Only DPJ has scored 20+ DK pts among all CLE WRs (29.1 vs. AZ)
  • BAL ranks 22nd in DK ppg allowed to WRs (37.5)
  • Notable opposing WR scores: Michael Pittman 20.9 // Marquise Goodwin 23.4 // Darnell Mooney 26.1 // Diontae Johnson 33.5 // Ja’Marr Chase 37.1
  • Njoku has three of the four double digit scores among CLE TEs (10.6, 12.5, 30.9)
  • Hooper has the other (12.5)
  • BAL ranks 30th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (17.2)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Jared Cook 12.5 // David Njoku 12.5 // Noah Fant 16.6 // CJ Uzomah 24.1 // Travis Kelce 26.9 // Darren Waller 29.5

CLE RBs

  • Kareem Hunt returned to limited action in Week 12 @ BAL (23 snaps, 1 target, and just 7 touches)
  • Nick Chubb had just 30 snaps, 4 targets, and 10 touches in Week 12
  • This is the same game that Lamar Jackson turned the ball over four times
  • On the season, Chubb averages 17.7 DK pts to Hunt’s 15.2
  • Out of nine games, Chubb has three single digit performances, two in the teens, two in the twenties, and one 30+ effort
  • Out of seven games, Hunt has two single digit performances, three with 10+ pts, and two 25+ efforts
  • BAL ranks ninth in DK ppg allowed to RBs (22.3)
  • Only two RBs have scored 20+ vs. BAL: D’Andre Swift 23.7 // Jonathan Taylor 34.9

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 4:05pm Eastern

Giants (
17.25) at

Chargers (
26.25)

Over/Under 43.5

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Notes

Key Matchups
Giants Run D
32nd DVOA/31st Yards allowed per carry
Chargers Run O
22nd DVOA/30th Yards per carry
Giants Pass D
22nd DVOA/18th Yards allowed per pass
Chargers Pass O
17th DVOA/26th Yards per pass
Chargers Run D
29th DVOA/32nd Yards allowed per carry
Giants Run O
7th DVOA/5th Yards per carry
Chargers Pass D
10th DVOA/27th Yards allowed per pass
Giants Pass O
10th DVOA/29th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By papy324 >>
  • The Giants are projected to start Jake Fromm at QB.
  • These are two of the clearest run funnel defenses in the league.
  • The Chargers WRs are dealing with Covid, the Giants WRs are dealing with injuries.
  • Saquon Barkley is underpriced for his role and matchup.
  • Austin Ekeler is a pay-up RB worth considering.

How los angeles Will Try To Win ::

The 7-5 Chargers come into this game currently holding one of the three wildcard spots in the AFC. The playoff race is as tight as it gets with eight teams holding records between 7-5 and 6-6, and no division winners with records better than four losses. The Chargers are one and a half games from the top seed, and one and a half games from missing the playoffs. The Chargers play fast (6th in situational neutral pace) and are aggressively letting their young stud QB attack defenses. However, the Chargers are currently dealing with a bout of Covid, which could cause them to miss multiple starters. Player availability will drastically impact the Chargers game plan.

The Giants defense has been solid against the pass (8th in DVOA) but has gotten pasted on the ground (31st in DVOA), giving us one of the clearest run funnel defenses in the league. The Chargers aren’t set up to dominate teams with a power running game, but they are more than capable of running the ball when necessary. Throw in a Covid outbreak in the WR room, and there is a chance the Chargers come into this contest with their run heaviest game plan of the year. Expect the Chargers to uncharacteristically ride their running game and defense to victory, especially if their WRs can’t play.

How new york Will Try To Win ::

The 4-8 Giants are in shambles. After firing Jason Garett two games ago, their offense has responded by scoring a combined 22 points, and now might be down to their third-string QB that they just signed off another team’s practice squad. This organization needs the season to end. Freddie Kitchens has been the de facto offensive coordinator for the past two games but when you’re trying to install a new offense, and you haven’t had the same QB for more than one week since you took over, you’re in a tough spot. Kitchens is a reasonably capable OC, but no one could make this turd shine.

The Giants will be facing a Chargers defense that has been tough against the pass (9th in DVOA) and rolled over on the ground (32nd in DVOA). The Giants might be using their third-string QB so they have all the reason in the world to try and run the ball as much as they can in this spot. Kitchens is smart enough to realize that his best shot will be pounding the running game and hoping that things stay close enough late in the game for a break or two to give his team a victory. 

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

This game opened with a lowish total of 44.5 but has come down to 43 with all the uncertainty around who will be playing for the Chargers. Regardless of who suits up for LA, this game pits two of the clearest run funnel defenses in the league against each other, with two offensive coordinators that should be able to figure out running is the path of least resistance. Expect a lot of handoffs on both sides, with the Chargers being the more effective offense, and eventually opening up a lead as the Giants struggle to move the ball with their second or third-string QB at the helm.  


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DFS+ Interpretation :


By Alex88 >>

OVERVIEW

  • LAC’s implied total of 27.75 is the fourth highest in Week 14
  • NYG’s implied total of 17.25 is tied for the fourth lowest
  • Second highest spread of the week (-10.5)
  • NYG has scored fewer than 24 points in seven of their last eight games
  • NYG averages the fifth lowest ppg (17.6)
  • LAC ranks ninth in ppg (26.2)
  • LAC’s defense allows the sixth most ppg (26.2)
  • Per numberFire, LAC ranks second in adjusted seconds per play (28.2) and fourth in adjusted pass rate (64.1%)
  • NYG ranks 18th in adjusted seconds per play (29.5) and 14th in adjusted pass rate (59.7%)

Mike Glennon

  • As of Wednesday afternoon, Daniel Jones has not cleared protocol
  • Mike Glennon, if he clears as expected, will start Sunday
  • If not, it may be Jake Fromm
  • Glennon’s DK log in his past three starts: 14.44 // 17.64 // 6.48
  • In all three, he did not hit 4x his salary despite costing below $5,000
  • LAC ranks sixth in DK ppg allowed to QBs (17.4)
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Joe Burrow 22.6 // Ben Roethlisberger 22.92 // Patrick Mahomes 24.9 // Baker Mayfield 26

NYG Passing Attack

  • Snap count since Week 10 bye: Evan Engram 159 // Darius Slayton 130 // Kenny Golladay 128 // Pharoh Cooper 75
  • Target count since Week 10 bye: Slayton 18 // Engram 16 // Golladay 14 // Kadarius Toney 12 // Cooper 5
  • Toney has missed the past two weeks and his status is unclear for Week 14
  • Sterling Shepard hasn’t played since before the bye
  • Slayton has yet to score 15 DK pts this season
  • Golladay has scored eight or fewer DK pts in each of the past four weeks
  • Cooper has yet to score 5 DK pts this season
  • LAC ranks seventh in DK ppg allowed to WRs (33.4)
  • Notable opposing WR scores: Devonta Smith 25.6 // Justin Jefferson 25.9 // Diontae Johnson 26.1 // Tee Higgins 31.8
  • Since Week 10, Engram ranks 20th in WOPR among all TEs
  • His DK log since Week 10: 3.2 // 6.7 // 10.1
  • LAC ranks 26th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (15.8)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Logan Thomas 12 // Darren Waller 15 // Tyler Conklin 16.1 // Mark Andrews 17.8 // Travis Kelce 20.4 // David Njoku 30.9

Saquon Barkley

  • Since the Week 10 bye, Barkley is tied for second in overall targets
  • His touch counts since then: 12 // 17 // 17
  • His DK log since then: 11.6 // 9.3 // 13.4
  • On the season, he’s averaging 9.47 DK ppg
  • His Week 14 salary of $6,000 is a season low
  • He began the year with a $7,800 tag
  • LAC ranks 25th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (26.5)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Javonte Williams 20.1 // Dalvin Cook 20.8 // CEH 20.9 // Kareem Hunt 25.9 // Tony Pollard 26 // Nick Chubb 27

Justin Herbert

  • Ranks seventh in PFF passing grade
  • Following his OROY 2020 season, Herbert has improved in yardage (295.6), TD% (5.7%), and Sack% (5.0%)
  • Tied for first in DK ppg (25.3)
  • Has hit 4x his Week 14 salary five times this season
  • His $7,100 cost is the first time he’s been over $7k in four weeks
  • NYG ranks 12th in DK ppg allowed to QBs (19)
  • No opposing QBs have hit 4x Herbert’s salary vs. NYG
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Tom Brady 23.28 // Taylor Heinicke 24.04 // Dak Prescott 25.68 // Matthew Stafford 26.24

LAC Passing Attack

  • Snap share: Keenan Allen 88% // Mike Williams 78.9% // Jared Cook 56.6% // Jalen Guyton 56% // Donald Parham 44.6% // Joshua Palmer 26.2%
  • Target share: Allen 26.2% // Mike 19.6% // Cook 12.4% // Guyton 6.8% // Parham 5.1% // Palmer 4.4%
  • Among all WRs, Allen ranks 10th in target share and 18th in WOPR
  • He’s expected to miss Week 14
  • Mike was just placed on the COVID list and will miss Week 14 as well
  • Guyton has peaked at 5 targets this season, but has never had the top of the depth chart so wide open
  • He scored 18.9 @ CIN in Week 13, with a 4/4-90-1 stat line
  • Palmer has run 30 or fewer snaps in every game this year, with a yardage ceiling of 25 and a DK ceiling of 9.4 (1/1-24-1 stat line vs. NE)
  • NYG ranks 24th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (38.1)
  • Notable opposing WR scores: Mike Evans 20.3 // Tyreek Hill 27.4 // Terry McLaurin 30.7 // Cooper Kupp 37
  • Cook averages 4.9 targets per game to Parham’s 2
  • Parham has just one game each of 4 & 5 targets
  • Cook has two games of 4 targets, four games of 5 targets, two games of 7 targets, and one 8 target game
  • They have each scored three TDs this season
  • Cook leads in red zone targets 7 to 5
  • He’s scored double digits four times this season
  • Parham costs just $400 less on DK, and he’s hit double digits twice
  • NYG ranks 17th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (12.5)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Mike Gesicki 11.6 // Noah Fant 12.2 // Rob Gronkowski 13.1 // Dalton Schultz 13.9 // Darren Waller 16.2

Austin Ekeler

  • His salary started the season at $7,000 but is now on a third straight week in the $8k range ($8,300)
  • He’s scored about 4x his Week 14 salary three times
  • Among qualified RBs, Ekeler ranks 13th in rush share, 17th in goal line share, fifth in target share, fifth in WOPR, and seventh in RBOPR (per Koalaty Stats)
  • 22.2 DK ppg ranks third
  • NYG ranks 24th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (26.4)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: JD McKissic 20.3 // Melvin Gordon 23.8 // Darrell Henderson 24.7 // Ezekiel Elliott 28.2

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 4:05pm Eastern

Lions (
14.75) at

Broncos (
27.25)

Over/Under 42.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Lions Run D
26th DVOA/30th Yards allowed per carry
Broncos Run O
29th DVOA/23rd Yards per carry
Lions Pass D
28th DVOA/32nd Yards allowed per pass
Broncos Pass O
28th DVOA/15th Yards per pass
Broncos Run D
22nd DVOA/16th Yards allowed per carry
Lions Run O
15th DVOA/18th Yards per carry
Broncos Pass D
4th DVOA/2nd Yards allowed per pass
Lions Pass O
7th DVOA/6th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By papy324>>
  • There isn’t a lot to like for DFS in this one.
  • The Broncos play slow in all situations.
  • The Lions backfield was a timeshare without D’Andre Swift.
  • The Broncos backfield is a timeshare, unless Gordon sits, which would elevate Williams to an elite play.

How detroit Will Try To Win ::

The Lions have been playing feisty football all year despite not having NFL talent level on their roster. Last week, they were finally rewarded on the last play of the game with a thrilling victory against division rival Minnesota. The 1-10-1 Lions are coming into this game off a victory for the first time all season, and entering a possible letdown spot against a Broncos team that is desperately trying to stay in the AFC playoff race. The Lions want to play slow (30th situational neutral pace), but speed way up when behind (9th in pace when trailing), and they are almost always behind. The Lions are scrappy and willing to do “whatever is working” in that individual game if it’s keeping things close. 

This week they draw a Denver team that has been middling against the run (16th in DVOA), and poor against the pass (25th in DVOA). That difference shouldn’t tilt the Lions particularly pass-heavy. Instead, the Lions are likely to maintain their normal balanced offense while trying to feel out the game. They won’t be afraid to cut bait and start passing if they’re behind, but the Broncos offense isn’t the type that forces a ton of aggression. Expect the Lions to remain balanced, while hoping to keep things close and searching for a chance to win a close game late.

How denver Will Try To Win ::

The 6-6 Broncos come into this game playing disappointing .500 football. Although that’s not the result this franchise had hoped for this year, it is about in line with their talent level, and the Broncos are unlikely to perform much better down the stretch. The Broncos play slow in all situations (29th situational neutral, 26th when trailing, 28th when ahead) and generally suck the life out of games. Vic Fangio hasn’t been able to figure out that Teddy Bridgewater is more average than bad and continues to call a game plan designed to hide his QB.  

This week Denver draws a Lions team that can be had coming and going, posting a poor 28th DVOA against the pass, and an almost as bad 23rd DVOA against the run. The Lions present nothing but paths of least resistance which means the Broncos should be comfortable attacking in their preferred manner, on the ground. Expect the Broncos to come in with a conservative game plan, designed to run the ball and chew up the clock. 

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

This game has a low total of 42 because the Lions aren’t expected to produce many points, with one of the lowest team totals you’ll see of only 17. That feels fair, as outside of last week’s 29-point game, the Lions have amazingly broken 17 points only once since Week 2, and they scored 19 points in that game. Ouch. The Broncos defense hasn’t been good this year, but they should be able to limit the talentless Lions offense coming into a tough environment at Mile High. The Broncos need to win to keep their season alive, and the Lions are coming off an emotional high. The most likely game flow has the Broncos controlling the game, riding their defense and running game to a confident victory.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By Dwprix >>

Overview: 

  • 2nd lowest total on slate (42)
  • Total has dropped 1.5 points
  • DEN is favored by 7.5
  • DET is 8-4 ATS // DEN is 6-6
  • DET ranks 29th in ppg (16.9) // DEN ranks 3rd in ppg allowed (18.2) 
  • DEN ranks 23rd in ppg (19.8) // DET ranks 29th in ppg allowed (26.3)
  • DEN pts allowed last five: (13, 30, 16, 10, 17)
  • 10 of 12 DEN games have went under the total
  • DET’s last four have all been within 3 pts: (vs MIN 29-27) // (vs CHI 14-16) // (@ CLE 13-10) // (@ PIT 16-16)
  • DET has scored under 20 pts in all but 2 games (Last week-29 pts, Week 1-33 pts)

Jared Goff:

  • 20+ DK pt games: (WK 1 vs SF, 32.92) // (WK 2 @ GB, 20.44) // (WK 13 vs MIN, 21.94)
  • Goff has thrown for 300+ yds once (WK 1 vs SF)
  • He does have other totals of 296, 268, 299 in other games
  • 5 games throwing 0 TDs // 1 game (last week) throwing 3
  • $5.1k is the 2nd cheapest starting QB this week
  • Season long price range ($5k-$5.4k)
  • DEN allows the 5th least DK pts to QBs (17.0)

DET WRs:

  • Tgts since WK 9 Bye: Amon-Ra St. Brown (12, 4, 4, 6) // Kalif Raymond (2, 4, 1, 6) // Josh Reynolds (7, 5, 3, DNP) 
  • St. Brown ($5k) is at his highest price all season after last weeks 10:86:1 TD, 24.8 DK pt game
  • His previous high was Week 12 ($4.4k)
  • DET WRs have only 8 RZ tgts on the season // Swift + Hockenson have 20 combined
  • DEN has allowed the 6th least 20+ yd recs (31)
  • DEN allows the 7th least DK pts/g to WRs (32.6)

DET TEs:

  • Hockenson leads the team in tgts (84), recs (61), & rec TDs (4)
  • He’s T-1st w/ Swift in RZ tgts: 10
  • Price: $5.3k // Season range: $4.9k-$5.8k
  • DEN allows the 4th least DK pts/g to TEs (8.4)

DET RBs:

  • D’Andre Swift (Q) got injured after 10 snaps Week 12, missed last week, & missed Wednesday’s practice
  • Snap last 2 w/o Swift (of 121): (Jamaal Williams-65) // (Jermar Jefferson-13) // (Godwin Igwebuike-32)
  • Williams last 2: (rush 17:71 rec 1:9) // (rush 16:65 rec 5:18)
  • HIs price ($5.5k) rose $100 from last week 
  • DEN allows the 11th least DK pts to RBs (22.4)

Teddy Bridgewater:

  • 20+ DK points: (Week 1 @ NYG, 20.5) // (Week 2 @ JAX, 24.2) // (Week 6 vs LV, 25.3) // (Week 9 @ DAL, 21.9)
  • DET has allowed 20+ DK pts to QBs in five of 12
  • $5.7k is $100 shy of Teddy’s season high
  • Price Range: $4.9k-$5.8k
  • DEN allows the 14th most DK pts to QBs (19.4)

DEN WRs:

  • Tgts since Jerry Jeudy return: (Jeudy-6, 3, 9, 8, 4) // (Sutton-6, 3, 3, 2) // (Patrick-5, 3, 6, 5)
  • Only one 100+ yd rec game from DEN WRs was Week 5 (Sutton, 120)
  • In 5 games Jeudy has not had more than 12.9 DK pts
  • His salary ($5.6k) is the most expensive all season
  • Sutton ($5.3k) is at the low end of his season long price range ($5.1k-$6.4k)
  • In twelve games, Patrick ($4.8k) has not broke 18.5 DK pts
  • DEN ranks 18 in pass yds/g (225.9) // DET ranks 21st in pass yds allowed (249.8)
  • DET has allowed 20+ DK pts to RBs in 7 of 12 weeks
  • In the games they didn’t allow 20+ to an RB: (Mooney: 20.5) // (Week 8 they allowed two RBs w/ 17+) // (Kupp-40.6) // (Andrews-18.9) // (Deebo-35.9)
  • DET allows the 12th most DK pts to WRs (36.7)

DEN RBs:

  • Melvin Gordon (Q) missed last week
  • Javonte Williams ($5.9k) w/o Gordon: (rush 23:102) // (rec 6:76:1 TD, 9 tgts)
  • Other RBs in Williams’ price range: Gibson, Barkley-$6k // Hubbard-$5.9k // James Robinson (Q)-$5.8k // Ingram-$5.8k
  • Williams got 29 touches of a possible 34 RB touches last week
  • DET allows the 3rd most DK pts to RBs (28.2)
  • Notable RB scores allowed by DET: (Mattison-21.4) // (Chubb-25.4) // (Harris-20.3) // (Scott-18.0 + Howard-17.7) // (Mixon-26.30 + Evan-15.7) // (Mattison-30.3) // (Montgomery-25.6) // (Jones-41.5) // (Mitchell-19.4)

DEN TEs:

  • Noah Fant has seven career games with 15+ DK points 
  • He’s cracked 15+ pts twice this season
  • Fant has 2 TDs, both of which came within the first 4 weeks
  • DEN allows the 15th least DK pts to TEs (12.5)

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 4:25pm Eastern

49ers (
26) at

Bengals (
23.5)

Over/Under 49.5

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Notes

Key Matchups
49ers Run D
2nd DVOA/2nd Yards allowed per carry
Bengals Run O
4th DVOA/29th Yards per carry
49ers Pass D
5th DVOA/10th Yards allowed per pass
Bengals Pass O
7th DVOA/16th Yards per pass
Bengals Run D
14th DVOA/9th Yards allowed per carry
49ers Run O
13th DVOA/10th Yards per carry
Bengals Pass D
12th DVOA/29th Yards allowed per pass
49ers Pass O
3rd DVOA/5th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By hilow >>
  • Injuries abound for both sides here.
  • CIN: cornerback Chidobe Awuzie, running backs Joe Mixon and Chris Evans, linebacker Logan Wilson, and defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin have all yet to practice this week (through Thursday).
  • SF: running backs Elijah Mitchell and Trenton Cannon, linebacker Dre Greenlaw, defensive lineman Maurice Hurst, cornerback Emmanuel Mosely, and wide receiver Deebo Samuel all missed practice on both Wednesday and Thursday.
  • These two offenses rank 28th and 31st in pace of play and in the bottom ten in the league in overall pass rates.

How san francisco Will Try To Win ::

The 49ers have continued their run-based attack as the season has progressed, ranking second in the league over the previous four games in total rush rate at 59% (second to only the 60% of the Eagles). They pair these high rush rates with a slow pace of play (28th overall) and a defensive scheme designed to limit splash plays against (below average blitz rates, average depth of target against and YAC allowed, third-fewest air yards allowed). Although Kyle Shanahan is typically regarded as one of the most dynamic offensive schemers in the league, he’ll have his work cut out for him this week with numerous injuries amongst his skill-position players. All of Elijah Mitchell, Trenton Cannon, and Deebo Samuel have yet to practice this week and should be considered legitimately questionable for Sunday. That could leave Jeff Wilson, Jr., JaMycal Hasty, Brandon Aiyuk, Trent Sherfield, Jauan Jennings, and George Kittle as the remaining healthy bodies in what has evolved into one of the more concentrated offenses in the league. The macro matchup against the Bengals should be considered a difficult one, as Cincinnati ranks sixth in the league in defensive drive success rate, fourth in plays allowed per drive, third in yards allowed per drive, and seventh in points allowed per drive.

As the Niners have shown us all season, Elijah Mitchell is the unquestioned lead back if healthy. Keep a close eye on his level of participation Friday after he self-reported concussion symptoms on Monday. Should he miss, it is highly likely we see Jeff Wilson, Jr. operate as the primary rusher while JaMycal Hasty handles change of pace and obvious pass-down duties. The matchup on the ground is a tough one on paper, yielding a disgusting 3.87 net-adjusted line yards metric against a Cincinnati defense that has faced the third-fewest rush attempts against this season (26.3 fantasy points per game allowed primarily inflated by the 11 total touchdowns allowed to opposing backfields). The volume should be there for this backfield, but the matchup is less than ideal, and we should expect a split workload should Mitchell miss.

Things get a little more interesting through the air, particularly if Deebo Samuel misses his second consecutive game. With Mohamed Sanu still on IR, Trent Sherfield stepped into 98% of the offensive snaps run from scrimmage last week, converting two of just five targets for a paltry 16 yards. Brandon Aiyuk played nearly every offensive snap as well, turning six targets into three catches for 55 yards. Jauan Jennings played 50% of the offensive snaps but saw only one target. George Kittle has worked his way back up to an every-down player and went absolutely bananas last week, converting 12 targets (on only 30 Jimmy Garoppolo pass attempts) into 181 yards and two scores. Should Deebo miss his second consecutive contest, expect a large portion of this pass offense to flow through Kittle and Aiyuk against a Bengals defense allowing a 67.26% completion rate (25th in the league), 6.8 yards per pass attempt (18th), and 10.1 yards per completion (14th). Should Deebo return, his role and usage likely depend on the status of Elijah Mitchell. With Mitchell in, we’re likely to see Deebo operate as the alpha wide receiver. Should Mitchell miss but Deebo play, we’re likely to see the same running back-wide receiver hybrid role we saw the last time Mitchell was out (similar to Cordarrelle Patterson).

How cincinnati Will Try To Win ::

The Bengals have been trying to win games in similar ways to how the Niners have been trying to win games, with the league’s 30th-ranked pace of play and sixth-highest rush rate over the previous four games. Also similar to the Niners, the Bengals rank in the bottom half of the league in pass rates when trailing this season. As such, Joe Burrow’s most pass attempts this season sits at just 40 (twice), as the team typically relies heavily on game flow to dictate their level of aerial aggression. Expect the Bengals to start the game with elevated rush rates and moderate-to-deep passing, only changing that plan of attack if forced to do so.

Joe Mixon typically operates in a “greater than lead back but lower than workhorse” role, usually checking in with a 65-75% snap rate role. But because so much of this offense is built around the run, it has led to some absolutely monster workload games recently (three games this season with more than 30 opportunities). Mixon also has at least one touchdown in every game since Week 3 and scored two touchdowns in each of the four games prior to last week. This gives him an elite floor, but he has recently been priced up to a point where his cost-considered ceiling is a tough sell (as in, he’s hit 4x his Week 14 salary only once this year). Should Mixon miss, we’re likely to see Samaje Perine step into a similar role, backed up by recent practice squad addition Trayveon Williams. The rushing matchup should be considered a difficult one, yielding a 3.99 net-adjusted line yards metric against a Niners defense allowing 25.0 fantasy points per game to opposing backfields.

Rookie wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase (13.0 aDOT, 7.3 average YAC) immediately stepped into the alpha role on this offense and stands as the only pass-catcher to operate in a near every-down role. That said, Tee Higgins (11.8 aDOT, low 3.4 average YAC) has as many double-digit target games as Chase has on the season (three each). Tyler Boyd (7.5 aDOT, moderate 5.1 average YAC) operates in a prototypical slot role, typically seeing 70-75% of the offensive snaps on a given week. The pass-catching corps is rounded out by tight end CJ Uzomah, who is in a route on only 55% of his snaps that come on pass plays this season. Joe Burrow’s 8.2 intended air yards per pass attempt rank top 10 in the league this season. Keep an eye on any reports out of Cincinnati regarding his injured pinky, as it could affect his ability to target receivers deep here.

Likeliest Game Flow :: 

Both of these teams have tried to win games in similar ways this season, each checking in with bottom-five pace of play and bottom-ten pass rates. While they both are capable of slightly increasing their pass rates and pace of play when trailing, neither make it to overly aggressive levels. The Niners do most of their damage through the air via YAC (second highest YAC per reception) while the Bengals typically attack deeper on the field (top ten in intended air yards per pass attempt and intended air yards per completion). All of that to say, the most likely way for this game to unfold is for it to mirror a late-season slugfest, with each team adopting a relatively conservative offensive approach.

Since the Bengals are most capable of generating splash plays through attacking deep downfield, and since the Niners aim to take away these areas of the field on defense, and since the Niners typically generate their splash plays through YAC, and since the Bengals have built a similar defense designed to take away deep passing but have struggled with YAC allowed per reception (bottom ten in the league), there aren’t many paths to this game truly opening up. It is likeliest to have to come through splash play generation from San Francisco. That said, these are two offenses that are well-coached and dynamic, so the possibility always exists for either team to generate the required offensive eruption that would force the other to follow suit, it is simply less likely here. Expect a slow-paced, slugfest-style game environment to start as each team jockeys for field position and control.


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By Dwprix >>

Overview:

  • 2nd highest total on slate (48.5)
  • Total has moved up 2.5 pts
  • SF is 1.5 pt favs after opening 3.5 pt favs
  • SF 6-6 (5-7 ATS) // CIN 7-5 (6-6 ATS)
  • CIN totals have went over in the last 5 of 6
  • Their previous 5 went under
  • SF ranks 13th in pts/g (25.3) // CIN ranks 12th in pts/g allowed (22.3)
  • CIN ranks 7th in ppg (27.6) // SF ranks 20th in pts/g allowed (23.2)
  • SF ranks 6th in TOP over their last 3 (34:05) // CIN ranks 5th (34:38)

Jimmy Garoppolo:

  • Jimmy threw for 299 last week w/ 2 TDs & 2 INTs
  • His salary ($5.8k) is a season high
  • He still has no 3 TD games on the season
  • Notable QB scores vs CIN: (Cousins-24.2) // (Mike White-31.1) // (Lamar-23.1) // (Rodgers-23.8) // (Cousins-25.0)
  • SF ranks 30th in pass atts/g (29.8) // CIN allows the 6th most pass atts (37.7)
  • CIN allows the 13th least DK pts to QBs (12.4)

SF WRs + George Kittle

  • Tgts w/o Deebo last week: (Brandon Aiyuk-6) // (George Kittle-12) // (Jauan Jennings-1) // (Trent Sherfield-5)
  • Routes run (of 32): Sherfield ($3k) – 31 // Aiyuk ($5.8k) – 30 // Kittle ($6.3k) – 28 //  Jennings ($3.3k) – 21 // Elijah Mitchell ($6.7k) – 17 
  • No WR besides Deebo has a 100+ yd game
  • Kittle last week w/ no Deebo: 9:181:2 TDs, 12 tgts
  • Samuel & Mohamed Sanu are tied w/ the most RZ tgts for SF.  Sanu is on IR & Deebo is Q
  • RZ tgts: (Deebo-8) // (Aiyuk-7) // (Kittle-4) // (Jauan Jennings-4) 
  • CIN allows the 15th most DK pts to WRs (36.7) & 13th least to TEs (12.4)

Eli Mitchell:

  • Rush atts last 3: (22, 27, 27)
  • Tgts last 4: (3, 5, 0, 5)
  • CIN D allows the most RB tgts/g (9.8), recs (7.5), & 4th most yds/g (55.1)
  • He’s broke 100+ yds in 4 of 9
  • His price went up $700 from last week
  • Season long price range after Mostert was hurt Week 1: ($5k-$6.7k)
  • SF rush // pass ratio: 48.3% (3rd most) // 51.7% (3rd least)
  • CIN D rush // pass ratio: 35.81% (3rd least) // 64.19% (3rd most)
  • CIN allows the 4th least rush yds/g (92.5) // SF avgs the 6th most (125.9)
  • CIN allows the 9th most DK pts to RBs (26.3) 

Joe Burrow (Q):

  • Burrow ($6.0k) is the cheapest he’s been since Week 4
  • He’s priced between Tannehill ($6.4k), Carr ($5.9k) & Garoppolo ($5.8k)
  • During an 8 game stretch (Weeks 2-8), Burrow threw 20 TDs
  • The other 5 games he’s thrown only 3 TDs (Weeks 1, 9-13)
  • He has 3 pass TDs in the last 4 games
  • SF is tied for the 6th least pass TDs allowed/g (1.4)
  • Burrow has rush TDs in B2B games
  • SF allows the most rushing yds (26.1/g) & 4th most rush TDs/g (.4) to QBs
  • They allow the 14th most DK pts to QBs (19.3) but 4th least pass yds/g (205.1)

CIN WRs:

  • After having rec yardage totals of 101, 159, 97, & 201 in the first 7 games, Ja’Marr Chase hasn’t broke 52 since
  • He had 7 TDs the first 7 games // Just 1 in the last 5
  • Chase ($6.9k) is the cheapest he’s been in 5 weeks
  • Higgins hasn’t had 20+ DK pts until the last 2 weeks (31.8, 26.4)
  • He has 3 games with 10+ tgts (14, 15, 10)
  • $6.4k is $400 more than he’s been all season
  • Tgts after week 9 Bye: (Chase – 8, 3, 6) // (Higgins-14, 8, 3) // (Boyd – 7, 2, 8)
  • SF allows the 16th least DK pts to WRs (36.3) 

Joe Mixon (Q):

  • Mixon had 19 rush atts in a blowout loss to LAC last week
  • The two weeks prior: (28, 30)
  • 14 total TDs (12 rush, 2 rec)
  • Mixon $7.7k is the 3rd most expensive RB (Ekeler-$8.3k, Kamara-$7.9k)
  • SF allows the 13th most DK pts to RBs (25.0)
  • SF DK pts allowed to RBs last three: (Travis Homer-19.0) // (Dalvin Cook-15.3, Alexander Mattison-10.8) // (James Robinson-11.8)

CIN TEs:

  • Uzomah tgts last 3: (6, 3, 3)
  • He has 2 games with 91 & 95 yds
  • All the rest he has less than 35
  • $3k is the cheapest he’s been since Week 7
  • SF allows the 2nd least DK pts to TEs (8.3)

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 4:25pm Eastern

Bills (
24.75) at

Bucs (
28.25)

Over/Under 53.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Bills Run D
3rd DVOA/14th Yards allowed per carry
Buccaneers Run O
30th DVOA/32nd Yards per carry
Bills Pass D
9th DVOA/6th Yards allowed per pass
Buccaneers Pass O
11th DVOA/28th Yards per pass
Buccaneers Run D
13th DVOA/19th Yards allowed per carry
Bills Run O
11th DVOA/2nd Yards per carry
Buccaneers Pass D
15th DVOA/7th Yards allowed per pass
Bills Pass O
2nd DVOA/4th Yards per pass

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).


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DFS+ Interpretation ::

By LexMiraglia10 >>

Tom Brady:

  • 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

TB WRs:

  • 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

Rob Gronkowski:

  • 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)

Leonard Fournette:

  • 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

Josh Allen:

  • 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+)

BUF WRs:

  • 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

Dawson Knox:

  • 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)

BUF RBs:

  • 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

Kickoff Sunday, Dec 12th 8:20pm Eastern

Bears (
16) at

Packers (
27)

Over/Under 43.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Bears Run D
29th DVOA/27th Yards allowed per carry
Packers Run O
3rd DVOA/11th Yards per carry
Bears Pass D
29th DVOA/30th Yards allowed per pass
Packers Pass O
15th DVOA/21st Yards per pass
Packers Run D
32nd DVOA/29th Yards allowed per carry
Bears Run O
12th DVOA/3rd Yards per carry
Packers Pass D
8th DVOA/23rd Yards allowed per pass
Bears Pass O
27th DVOA/18th Yards per pass

XANDAMERE’S SHOWDOWN SLANT

Sunday night brings us a doozy of a game as the Bears visit the Packers. The game has a low-but-respectable total of 43 points, except they’re almost all on the Green Bay side. The Packers are expected to score 27.75 points, good for the third-highest team total on the entire week behind just the Bucs and the Chiefs, while the Bears total is just 15.25, the lowest of any team in Week 14. Yikes. Vegas is expecting a curb-stomping.

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Green Bay

On the . . .

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Kickoff Monday, Dec 13th 8:15pm Eastern

Rams (
24) at

Cards (
27)

Over/Under 51.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Rams Run D
7th DVOA/4th Yards allowed per carry
Cardinals Run O
27th DVOA/17th Yards per carry
Rams Pass D
20th DVOA/17th Yards allowed per pass
Cardinals Pass O
29th DVOA/32nd Yards per pass
Cardinals Run D
27th DVOA/23rd Yards allowed per carry
Rams Run O
24th DVOA/29th Yards per carry
Cardinals Pass D
19th DVOA/7th Yards allowed per pass
Rams Pass O
22nd DVOA/30th Yards per pass

XANDAMERE’S SHOWDOWN SLANT

Monday Night Football looks super exciting as the Rams visit the Cardinals for a 51.5 total game with Arizona favored by 2.5. We have some significant playoff implications here as the Rams need to win this game to have any realistic shot of taking the NFC West, while the Cardinals could all but lock up the division with a victory.

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Arizona

On the Cardinals side, we get the benefit of a clear backfield situation with James Conner having played 77% or more of the snaps every week since . . .

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