Jan
07
2021

Edge Factor: Wild Card Weekend DFS

The playoffs are here! It is SUPER wildcard weekend. This is one of the most fun DFS slates of the entire year.

One of the most important things to remember this weekend is to utilize the late swap. It is one of the most forgotten, but most effective ways to help you make money in DFS. Being able to put someone in the flex from the last game on the slate you are playing can help you get off the chalk and onto a contrarian play if you are playing from behind or vice versa.

Unfortunately, for me, two of my favorite games are the early games. The Tennessee Titans vs Baltimore Ravens and Indianapolis Colts vs Buffalo Bills are my two favorite games on the slate, and I think they will be a lot of people’s.

They two of the highest totals on the slate and some of the best performers in DFS on the year in Josh Allen, Derek Henry, Stefon Diggs, Jonathan Taylor, and Lamar Jackson.

It is going to be important this week to find small edges, wherever they may be. Ownership may end up being one of those edges. Keep a close eye on where ownership for players is before the game. I am not saying don’t play chalk, that is saying if you do, make sure to find a lower owned player somewhere else.

For this article, I am going to be picking my favorite plays for the combined Saturday-Sunday slate:

Running Backs

Cam Akers ($5100)
Akers is becoming my favorite play on the entire weekend. I don’t think he is going to be very highly owned as I think people are going to stay away from this game in general. He is coming off a brutal 21 carry, 34-yard performance; however, he also had four targets for 52 yards. The 25 total opportunities (rushing attempts and targets) are something that I really like. In his last four games played he has no fewer than 18 total opportunities. At his price, that is a great value.

JK Dobbins ($6600)
I wish Dobbins was a little cheaper, but I still think he is a good play. He is the most explosive RB the Ravens have and has taken over the lead roll in Baltimore. Of all the teams left in the playoffs, the Titans have given up the most fantasy points to RBs on the year. The worry is always Lamar Jackson and Gus Edwards steal TDs from him, but I think there are going to be a lot of TDs scored in this game on both sides.

Wide Receivers

Stefon Diggs ($7700)
Diggs is too cheap at his price point for the production that puts out week to week. He is clearly Josh Allen’s favorite target and he has delivered as that guy in a big way this year. The Bills are a team that throws as much as anyone in the NFL and Allen’s and Digg’s numbers reflect that. Diggs is the highest projected WR on the slate, narrowly outperforming AJ Brown. I will have Diggs in almost every lineup.

Diontae Johnson ($6200)
The Cleveland Browns are a mess right now. They have barely been able to practice all week. Their head coach is on the COVID list. I like the Steelers to win this game big. If they do, it is going to be because of their pass game.

Like the Bills, they throw it as much as anyone in the NFL, and Ben Roethlisberger’s favorite WR is Johnson. His 52% weight opportunity (air yards + targets) is highest on the Steelers. He also gets one of the best matchups in the playoffs against Terrance Mitchell, who will be across from him most of the day.

Quarterbacks

Lamar Jackson ($7800)
You could argue Josh Allen here is a favorite play, but I will go Jackson. It really boils down to the fact that since week eight, he only has one game where he doesn’t have double-digit rushing attempts and that he is facing the Titans defense who is terrible. He has the baked-in rushing upside and the potential to hit some big plays in the passing game because of how poor the Titans pass rush and secondary are. I wouldn’t hate pairing him with Marquise Brown either.

Philip Rivers ($5500)
Where Jackson runs a lot, Rivers is the total opposite and basically never does. I do like the fact that he is playing the Bills, however. This is a game that they are likely going to be down in. They are currently 6.5 point underdogs per Vegas odds.

If they are down and having to throw a bunch, or just throwing a bunch to try and keep up with the high-scoring Bills offense, you are going to get a lot of volume out of Rivers. His price is great at $5500 and allows you to get very creative with your lineups.

Tight Ends

Jack Doyle ($2900)
Of all the teams left in the playoffs, the Buffalo Bills have given up the most points to the tight end position on the year. Now, a lot of that was probably because Matt Milano was out, who is their best cover LB; he is back now.

I still like Doyle as a punt. I think you could also use Trey Burton. It goes with the same logic as Philip Rivers. The high passing volume could lead to him falling in the end zone. Also, Rivers loves to Dump it off to the TE and RB.

Defense/Special Teams

Washington ($2400)
I have been playing Washington all year, and I am going to stay with that. They are the third-cheapest defense on the slate, and I think that is too cheap. Tom Brady is a statue, and his kryptonite over the years has been teams that can rush four and play coverage; that is exactly what Washington is going to do. They have one of the best front fours in the NFL. They pressure at a high rate; pressure leads to sacks and turnovers, and that leads to points.