NFL DFS Thursday Night Football showdown lineup advice: Chiefs vs Chargers

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws a pass against the Los Angeles Chargers during the second half at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.
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Howard Bender

NFL· 1 month ago

Show Bio

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 Nation. 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 $1,000,000 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….

Week 15 of the NFL season has been marred with COVID outbreaks across the league, but we are still getting a fantastic, marquee match-up for Thursday Night Football as the Kansas City Chiefs do battle with the Los Angeles Chargers in what could be a deciding factor with who wins the AFC West. The Chiefs have a one-game lead but the Chargers have already beaten them once back in Week 3. A win for Los Angeles puts them in first place with a massive edge in tiebreakers.

From a DFS Showdown standpoint, this game should be incredibly fun to watch as Justin Herbert and Patrick Mahomes are two of the best and most exciting quarterbacks to watch. Herbert became the only quarterback in NFL history to throw for at least 30 touchdowns in each of his first two seasons while Mahomes, who has endured some struggles this season, always remains a dangerous threat for 300 yards and multiple touchdowns. With the arsenal of weapons each one has, building lineups is going to be exciting.

MVP/Captain

Justin Herbert, QB, LAC

The guy has been money in the bank all year long and always warrants consideration for the top spot. He’s got a full arsenal of pass-catching weapons, has thrown for at least 300 yards in three of his last four starts and has 11 touchdown passes in that span. In a projected shootout, it’s hard not to go with the guy who threw for 281 yards and four touchdowns without an interception the last time they faced.

Patrick Mahomes, QB, KC

It has definitely been an up-and-down season for Mahomes, but just when people are ready to jump off the Chiefs bandwagon, he has a monstrous game. Granted, these are the Chargers and not the Raiders, but Mahomes still threw for 260 yards with three touchdowns against the Chargers back in Week 3.

Travis Kelce, TE, KC

Kind of an easy and somewhat chalky call here, but you can’t argue against it, can you? The Chargers rank 22nd in DVOA against the tight end and are allowing the sixth-most fantasy points per game to the position. Kelce dominated the Chargers in Week 3, hauling in seven catches for 104 yards so expect Mahomes to seek him out.

Mid-Tier

Tyreek Hill, WR, KC

He’s been quiet over these last three games and only had five catches for 56 yards the first time these teams squared off. But Hill is an explosive player and is always a danger to break a long touchdown catch. Mahomes looks for him downfield all the time so one mistake by the Chargers secondary and he’s off to the races.

Austin Ekeler, RB, LAC

It’s a short week and he may be dealing with an ankle issue, but the latest reports say that Ekeler is expected to play and we’re in on him against a team that ranks 20th against the run in DVOA and 27th against running back pass plays. Ekeler racked up over 100 all-purpose yards with six catches and a receiving touchdown back in Week 3. The Chargers will try to keep his legs fresh, but he’ll be heavily involved in this game plan.

Angeles Chargers running back Austin Ekeler

Keenan Allen, WR, LAC

He missed last week’s game after landing on the COVID list, but Allen was activated early this week and should be good to go. Will he be sluggish? COVID affects everyone differently so it’s hard to tell. What we do know is that he is Herbert’s security blanket, so he’ll see plenty of targets come his way.

Mike Williams, WR, LAC

With Allen back, Williams won’t see some of the heavy coverage he got last week and he’s got a nice match-up with Mike Hughes who may be a decent cover guy, but he loses the physical battle to Williams regularly as he is six inches shorter and gives up 30 pounds to Williams. Speed-wise they’re close, so if Williams gains position or separation, we could see some fireworks.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, KC

He doesn’t see a world of volume but you cannot ignore the fact that the Chargers are allowing the second-most rushing yards per game (140.7) and have allowed 19 rushing touchdowns on the season. CEH has three touchdowns in his last three games and is also getting more involved in the passing game with eight catches in those three games, as well.

Darrel Williams, RB, KC

He’s the complementary back to Edwards-Helaire but he sees about the same in target share as Mahomes has routinely hit him on some designed screens over the past few games. Given the weakness against the run for the Chargers, he becomes an interesting contrarian play but keeps a share of the Kansas City ground attack.

Jared Cook, TE, LAC

He comes into Thursday night with no injury designation and faces a team that ranks 17th in DVOA against the tight end and gives up at least 13 fantasy points per game to the position. He finally saw more red-zone looks last week which makes him an intriguing asset, especially if Allen needs to take some snaps off in this game.

Byron Pringle, WR, KC

The Chiefs don’t really throw to too many other guys, but the fact that Pringle has now averaged three targets over the last four games and has seven catches and one touchdown in that span, means he’s getting a bit more attention while defenses focus on Kelce and Hill.

Jalen Guyton, WR, LAC

Just on the borderline of dart throws as Guyton is a deep threat who occasionally comes up with a big touchdown. He has scored in each of the last two games, though which is why he looks a little better than just a dart throw.

Dart Throw

Mecole Hardman, WR, KC

He seems to have slid behind Pringle on the target share in recent weeks, but Hardman is always a threat given his speed. He had three grabs for 33 yards and a touchdown in Week 3 against the Chargers, so why not?

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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