NFL Daily Fantasy Advice, wild card Sunday DFS Picks

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The NFL playoffs are here, and with the expanded format we’ve got three wild card games on each day this weekend. We’ve been bringing you the best plays each and every week this season, including some guys who are flying under the radar that might be low-owned with tournament winning potential. We’ll also be letting you know about a couple of popular players you should avoid at all costs.

Without further ado here are our Sunday wild card picks, using pricing from DraftKings and FanDuel. You can also view our picks on the side and total for every NFL playoff game under our ‘NFL Picks‘ tab.

QB – Drew Brees – DraftKings $5700, FanDuel $7800

I think Brees makes the most sense at quarterback for this slate, particularly on DraftKings where he’s ridiculously cheap and priced behind Ben Roethlisberger for some reason. Everybody is giving this Bears defense way too much credit based solely on reputation and not on their actual recent performance. Chicago’s secondary quietly collapsed the second half of the season, right around when their offense started to pick things up.

When they weren’t beating up on some of the league’s worst teams they got exposed, and Aaron Rodgers picked them apart in Week 17, throwing only one more incompletion (five) than touchdown (four). Brees obviously doesn’t offer much in terms of arm strength these days, but he won’t need it here with Sean Payton scheming up plenty of easy throws.

RB – J.K. Dobbins – DraftKings $6600, FanDuel $6800

Dobbins is only the fifth-most expensive running back on both sites, and I think that’s misguided. The Ravens clearly realized he was their most talented back down the stretch, and I expect him to be featured here. He’s coming off a dominant performance where he rushed for 160 yards and two touchdowns on only 13 carries against the Bengals, so I’m not sure why people are still sleeping on him.

He also has a great matchup against a Titans team that has easily the worst defense of any of the six squads playing Sunday. In fact, Tennessee has given up the fifth-most PPR points to running backs of any team in the league this year. Dobbins is peaking at the right time, and he’s scored at least one touchdown in six straight games.

WR – Chase Claypool – DraftKings $5200, FanDuel $6100

Claypool is the eighth-most expensive receiver on DraftKings and tenth-most on FanDuel, when he has the upside to be the top performing wideout on the entire slate. Claypool’s numbers dipped a bit when the Steelers’ whole offense tanked for a while there, causing a lot of people to forget about him. He made a big statement in Week 17, finishing with 101 yards and a touchdown.

It always felt like Pittsburgh was saving him for the playoffs as his snaps weirdly declined for a bit there, and I think he’s going to be a big part of the game-plan here. Cleveland was already giving up the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing receivers this year, and that was before they got decimated by COVID-19 this week.

TE – Mark Andrews – DraftKings $5200, FanDuel $7000

I don’t think you can afford to fade Andrews here, as he’s leaps and bounds ahead of the other tight end options. He didn’t do a ton in Week 17, but that was because Baltimore won 38-3 and mostly just ran the ball, and even still he drew seven targets. Right before that he had been hot, with at least 61 yards in five straight games, and I think Lamar Jackson is going to lean on his tight end heavily here in such a high pressure environment.

Guys to avoid – Ryan Tannehill, David Montgomery, A.J. Brown

Tannehill is the second-most expensive quarterback, and I don’t see any way you could play him here. He’s going up against an elite Ravens pass defense that only allowed 6.4 yards per attempt this season, the second-best figure in the league behind only the Rams. Tennessee is going to try to win this game with Derrick Henry, not with Tannehill’s arm.

Montgomery is the third-most expensive running back, and he put up all his numbers down the stretch against incredibly soft defenses. Now he’s facing an elite Saints run defense that gave up the fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs this season. The Bears are also underdogs of ten points, so they likely won’t be running much. Brown is the highest-priced receiver on this slate, and for the same reasons I’m fading Tannehill, I’m fading him.


Want more NFL advice all season long? Visit our ‘NFL picks‘ page for breakdowns and picks of every game each week.

What is NFL DFS

NFL DFS is an NFL Daily Fantasy Sports contest.

So what is a Daily Fantasy Sports contest you may ask?
The main difference between a Daily Fantasy Sports contest and a more traditional fantasy football contest, as the name suggests, is the length in time in which it is played over. NFL DFS contests are accelerated, fast-paced contests typically played over either a day or an NFL game week, rather than the season-long contests you may be accustomed to.  

You’ll enter a contest, and draft a team, within a set budget, with each player’s price set depending on their week’s matchup and recent performances. Point scoring is fairly traditional with touchdowns, yards, and receptions to the fore.

How to Win DFS NFL

As with sports betting, there are many different strategies and ways that can improve your chances of winning. Here’s a couple of strategies to try out in your next NFL DFS contest and improve your chances of winning.

  • Correlated Plays

    Most people will start their contest by picking a QB they like and build a team around the position. Chances are if he has a great game, one of his targets will do too. By picking two correlated players, for example, Patrick Mahomes and Tyreek Hill, you can score off both players on the same play if they hit for a big touchdown. Its a higher risk high reward option because it can go either way, but by correlating your picks, the chances are, if one hits, they’ll both hit.

  • Understand the Scoring Systems

    It may sound obvious, but some contests will score differently. The most notable difference being PPR contests – Points Per Reception – In this instance, you’ll want to look player target stats, with a player catching 10 passes for 100 yards being way more valuable than a player that catches two passes for the same yards.

    In certain teams, schemes, and matchups this can add considerable value to a slot receiver, for example. Julian Edelman has been a prime example over the last decade, who, while he won’t always go off with 100+ yard games, he’ll always be picking up additional points per reception.

  • Pay attention to the weekly team and player news

    Unfortunately, injuries are part of the NFL, and it’s important to keep tabs with the week’s team and player news, particularly if a big name is lost to injury. The dollar values of players are very rarely updated after injuries so the next man up can we worth his weight in gold.

    While it varies by position, the running back spot can be particularly fruitful in this instance and you can find yourself a bargain pick, freeing up space for those top players at other positions.

How to Analyze NFL week to week for DFS 

Matchups are everything in NFL DFS contests and fortunately, there is a wealth of information available for you to use to find the best ones.

Team stats are always a great starting point. Some teams will defend the pass better than the run and vice versa, make the most of these to find players in matchups with plenty of upsides.

You also want to look at the team they play for, there’s little point picking up a receiver in a team that patently likes to run the ball more than they like to throw it.

Use the sportsbook lines to your advantage. The sportsbook lines have an incredible level of accuracy in predicting how a game will go and whether you’ll see a shootout or a low scoring game. While it’s no exact science, and yes, the sportsbooks can get it wrong, it’s a good way of gauging which games could see the most points and focusing on some players from that matchup.

How to Find Value in NFL DFS

Value in a DFS contest is quite simply how many points a player can get vs how many dollars he costs to draft. One great way of determining value is to utilize the various player stat projection tools out there, including our very own NFL computer picks, and compare it to the player’s draft price.

Our NFL computer picks use a wealth of statistical data to simulate scenarios and provide the best player and team projections that can be used for your NFL DFS contest and sports betting.

You can simply take players’ projected stat lines and divide it by his price to determine a projected DFS value.

For example, if a QB is projected 300 yards passing, 2 passing touchdowns, 20 rushing yards, and a rushing touchdown this would equate to 31 DFS points. If the QB costs $10,000 you can divide his price by his projected points, in this case, $322 per point, and get a metric you can use to compare players to determine their value.

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