The NFL divisional round is here and with it comes another great slate of DFS. I, for one, am very happy with the fact that DraftKings decided to have the main slate be Saturday and Sunday combined. I was not a huge fan of last week how they had a Saturday, Sunday, and a combined slate.
The player pool is shrinking and with that comes tougher and tougher decisions, finding a slight edge anywhere you can become even more crucial.
I am going to really look at taking advantage of late swaps this week. Late swap is critical every week, but even more so in a slate-like this. I spoke of this last week as well, but it becomes even more important this week. Also, being able to take information in the game after game and adjusting on the fly is very important.
For this reason, I am likely to stay away from the first game on the slate as much as possible. One, I am not big on the Rams Packers matchup, to begin with, but also because it also allows you to see how things are stacking up. I do love Cam Akers in that game though, but we will get there.
The highest game total on the slate is the Chiefs verse Browns game. I love everything on the Chiefs’ offense, especially the passing options. The Browns do have some cheap bring back options and could make a sneaky stack if you go, Baker Mayfield and Jarvis Landry, for instance, and come back with Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill.
Let’s take a look at some of my favorite plays:
Cam Akers ($5700)
Akers barely received a price bump after a tremendous game against the Seattle Seahawks. He is going to be popular, but he is someone I am willing to eat the chalk with. Since McVay has given the reigns over to Akers completely, he has been awesome. He has multiple 20 plus carry games, get targets in every game, and gets all the goal-line work.
He is just way too cheap this week. The Packers defense is very susceptible to the run and with the uncertainty at QB, they will lean heavily on the rookie once again this week.
Aaron Jones ($6800)
I don’t have a ton of interest in this game, even though I am recommending a running back from each of the respective teams. I will not play these backs together; I don’t want to burn both RBs in the first game. The Rams defense is very good, obviously; however, Aaron Donald is banged up, and if they are susceptible anywhere, it is against the run. I also think that because Davante Adams is going to garner so much attention from the secondary, Rodgers may lean on Jones in the passing game.
Tyreek Hill ($8000)
All of the Chiefs passing game options are expensive, and for good reason. They have a tremendous matchup against the Cleveland Browns. The Browns rank 29th per DVOA against deep passes and 29th against passes on third down. They are coming off a game in which they game up 501 passing yards to the Steelers… I don’t care it took 68 attempts. The Chiefs are going to throw early and often. Mahomes, Hill, and Kelce are a lock to be in a majority of my lineups.
Rashard Higgins ($4100)
If you are looking to save money at the WR position, I don’t think that Higgins is a bad option. The Browns are 10 point underdogs in this game, and if they are down like that, they are going to need to be throwing to catch up. I do prefer Austin Hooper as my main bring back, but Higgins is also a good option.
Patrick Mahomes ($8000)
Everyone has been waiting for that monster game all year. Well, here it comes. I already mentioned how poor the Browns defense has been on the year defending the pass. Well, they also give up a ton of points. If you take out the two extreme wind games they played in, they gave up 31.7 points per game. That is second-most in all the NFL and that includes games against the Giants, Jacksonville, Philadelphia (before Jalen Hurts), and the Jets. I am finding ways to get Chiefs players in my lineups this week.
Josh Allen ($7400)
It is hard not to like Josh Allen any week and this week is no different. The Bills continue to throw as much as anyone in the NFL they are going to need to against this Ravens defense. The Bills’ run game has been brutal all year and we just watched the Ravens take care of the best-run game in the NFL last week in the Tennessee Titans.
Allen also always has a built-in floor with his rushing ability. We saw last week in big games, and in big moments, not only does he like to run, the Bills like to call runs for him. He is coming off an 11 carry game, and I could see that again if the game is close, which it is expected to be.
Travis Kelce ($7800)
Did I mention the Browns had a bad pass defense? Well, on top of being towards the bottom per DVOA in those other passing categories, they are also 28th defending passes to the tight end. Of all the teams in the playoffs, they have given up the third-most fantasy points to TEs on the year.
The Bills actually have given up the most, and I think doing some double TE stacks this week might actually be in play. Mark Andrews is the next most expensive tight end and I could see myself trying to get Andrews and Kelce into a few lineups.
It is always odd to like a QB and the defense he is facing, but I do in fact like the Ravens defense this week. They are the third-cheapest defense, and we have seen that Allen isn’t afraid to have some turnover worthy plays. Just last week against the Colts, he had a dropped interception and a fumble the Bills recovered. The Ravens pressure at the eighth highest rate in the NFL. If they can pressure, he may be vulnerable for some more turnovers.