NFL DFS Monday Night Football showdown lineup advice: Rams vs Cardinals

kyler muray
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Howard Bender

NFL· 1 month ago

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I have been working in the fantasy sports industry for more than 20 years. I am the head of fantasy sports content for Fantasy Alarm and DFS Alarm as well as a bi-weekly columnist for the New York Post. Welcome to the #Family.

Welcome to daily fantasy football, Pickswise users. For those who haven’t yet dipped their toes into the DFS pool, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Howard Bender and I have been working in the fantasy sports industry for more than 20 years. I am the head of fantasy sports content for Fantasy Alarm and DFS Alarm as well as a bi-weekly columnist for the New York Post. We’ve enjoyed tremendous success over the years, but this NFL season has been one of our best as our Playbook and Showdown write-ups have already brought in a million-dollar winner on FanDuel as well as several others who have enjoyed six-figure wins. We promote the process and teach you to be a better DFS player and that has certainly been the case this year. Welcome to the #FAmily….

The battle for NFC West supremacy continues tonight with a Monday Night Football game that should have plenty of excitement and — for those playing DFS showdown contests — a lot of scoring. The division-leading Arizona Cardinals host the second-place Los Angeles Rams with just two games separating them in the standings. When they played in Los Angeles in Week 4, the Cardinals won 37-20 in a game that featured more than 850 total yards and five different touchdown-scorers. Both teams have made improvements to their offense as the Cardinals traded for tight end Zach Ertz and the Rams added Odell Beckham to replace the injured Robert Woods. With an over/under of 51, this should be an exciting back-and-forth battle throughout the night with a substantial number of scoring options from which to choose a winning lineup.

MVP/Captain

Kyler Murray, QB, ARI

While the Rams have done well against opposing quarterbacks this season, Murray is obviously not your average guy. He showed last week that he was healthy again, rushing for 59 yards and 2 touchdowns, and he’ll be looking to improve on his numbers from back in Week 4 when he threw for 268 yards and 2 TDs while rushing for another 39 yards against these same Rams.

Cooper Kupp, WR, LAR

Kupp was held in check for the most part the last time these teams squared off, catching just 5 of his 13 targets for 64 yards with no touchdowns. He and CB Byron Murphy Jr. will dance again tonight as Kupp seeks his eighth 100-yard effort and 12th touchdown of the season.

A.J. Green, WR, ARI

This is a bit of a contrarian play, but one that makes a lot of sense. With Rams CB Jalen Ramsey working primarily out of the slot with the occasional move to the outside to cover DeAndre Hopkins, Darious Williams handling the bulk of the work against Hopkins, and Donte Deayon out with COVID, the Cardinals will leave third-year back-up CB David Long on the right side to cover Green. When these teams faced each other in Week 4, the same coverage scheme was in place and Green posted 5 catches for 67 yards and a touchdown against Deayon. Long is just not as good.

Other Plays

Matthew Stafford, QB, LAR

The implied total of 51 obviously indicates a high-scoring game with shootout potential. Stafford chucked the ball 41 times during the Week 4 loss to Arizona and should probably follow suit here in their second meeting. He has Sony Michel lending support out of the backfield, but the expectation is that Stafford looks to take this game over.

Sony Michel, RB, LAR

He rumbled his way to 124 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries last week, but that was against the Jaguars. He’ll lead the charge again this week but the Rams are allowing the seventh-fewest rushing yards per game. On the bright side, they’ve coughed up 13 rushing touchdowns this season — which is eighth-most in the league.

James Conner, RB, ARI

He’s been an absolute beast all year and had a pair of scores against the Rams back in Week 4. However, that was when he was more of just their short-yardage back and with the possible return of Chase Edmonds tonight, his workload may be altered. If Edmonds has a role, Conner should still be a nice contrarian play.

DeAndre Hopkins, WR, ARI

In Week 4 he spent most of his time being covered by Darious Williams with an occasional matchup against Jalen Ramsey. Hopkins still managed to wrangle in four of his seven targets for 67 yards, although he didn’t get into the endzone. Obviously he is still crazy talented and can still explode at any point, so while he may not be No. 1 on my list, another 60-odd yards will be fine so long as he does some endzone dancing.

Van Jefferson, WR, LAR

He’s really starting to blossom outside the shadow of Robert Woods and has touchdowns in each of his last two games. He also made 6 grabs for 90 yards and a touchdown back in Week 4, so look for Stafford to find Jefferson all over the field. His ability to line up both in the slot and on the outside has boosted his targets share significantly this season.

Odell Beckham, WR, LAR

We’re all pretty familiar with who Beckham is as a receiver and the deep threat he poses each and every play. With touchdowns in each of his last two games, it’s obvious that Stafford seeks him out regularly. Look for the Rams to try and get him opposite Marco Wilson as much as possible.

Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (3) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium.

Christian Kirk, WR, ARI

He’s the contrarian play to using Green in the captain’s seat, as Kirk’s workload has greatly diminished in the wake of Green’s resurgent season. If you don’t believe in Green and opt to leave him out of your lineup, Kirk could be an interesting option — especially with his ability to go deep.

Zach Ertz, TE, ARI

The Rams may rank eighth in DVOA against the tight end, but they’re also allowing the 11th-most fantasy points per game to the position. He was averaging between five and six targets per game before he stepped out of last week’s game with an injury. He has since healed and carries no injury designation into tonight’s game.

Dart Throws

Chase Edmonds, RB, ARI

He will be a game-time decision after being activated from IR, so we aren’t exactly sure if he’s going to play. The Cardinals ran a lot against the Rams when they played in Week 4, so while we don’t expect too heavy a workload he could get mixed in and even be featured inside the red zone.

For a more in-depth breakdown and showdown analysis, be sure to check out DFSAlarm.com for all of your daily fantasy sports needs.

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