Let’s start the DFS grind. This weekly breakdown will go over each game with a focus on finding value plays and hopefully some players to lock into our lineups this week. Note I usually stick to Draftk]Kings, but I will dabble occasionally on other sites. For that reason, this is going to be focused more on the DK prices.
BUF @ BAL (-7.5) o/u 40.5
This line is fairly surprising to me. 40.5 points is the lowest Vegas total on the board, but it still feels too high. I think this is going to be a low-scoring affair that features some solid defenses. The last time these teams matched up was in week 1 of 2016 and they put up a whopping 20 points total as Baltimore won 13-7. I expect a similar outcome here with Baltimore taking this one at home.
BUF: FADE. You could try to make an argument for Shady McCoy here as he is going to be their entire offense… but this is in Baltimore, and he didn’t get a full preseason to prepare for the regular season. He will get the rust knocked off of him against a Baltimore defense that should shut down Buffalo.
QB: Flacco is very cheap on DK at $4900 and could be an okay contrarian play. He has a talented group of receivers and some fire under his ass that Lamar Jackson lit. Don’t expect too much, but I could see him reaching value at this price point.
WR: John Brown was the talk of training camp and he is very cheap at $3700. Flacco still throws deep and John should be stepping up to fill that deep threat role.
RB: Alex Collins could see a heavy workload after Baltimore takes the early lead.
Ravens D/ST: My favorite play from this game. Add home field advantage to the Peterman project and this may be an ugly sight. The $3800 price tag could be worth it.
JAX @ NYG (+3.0) o/u 42.5
Welcome to the NFL Saquon. This matchup is another ugly one that makes me want to stay away. The Jaguars are still the Jaguars but Eli is still also Eli.. my point? This could be ugly.. I expect New York to try and control possession, and do a good job until they get down at the end of the first quarter. After the offense stymies they will go back to chucking the ball and Eli will be crying about his makeshift line that is only good on the left side. Jags don’t have the greatest offense, but they don’t need it against this Giants defense.
QB: The Bortlage. Not terrible, but there are better options at his price point. More of a 2nd tier play to me.
RB: Leonard Fournette. Me likey. He should get some extra carries after they get up and try to maintain the lead while wasting the clock. Safe play here.
WR: With Lee out for the season that opens up doors for what looks to be Donte Moncrief and Keelan Cole starting as of writing this. I give the edge to Keelan, but both can be a decent punt option.
Jaguars D/ST: Another solid play you can’t go wrong with. I like Baltimore more though with them playing at home.
RB: I am going to take a wait and see approach on Saquon. Could be one of the lowest prices we see for him this year though if he lives up to the hype.
TE: Evan is too pricey here but with all the focus on other weapons he could be a sneaky contrarian play.
Giants D/ST: no thank you.
TB @ NO (-10) o/u 49.5
Second highest total of the week in what looks to be a lopsided game in favor of the Saints.
QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick is cheap at $5000 and could be worth a look as a punt option in a game that he will be throwing a lot to try and keep up.
RB: Peyton Barber out shined Ronald Jones II to lock up the starter role for now. $4100 is cheap and again we have a possible punt option.
WR: Passing on Mike Evans because Lattimore is pretty good and should slow him down enough to have me unsure if he will reach value. Chris Godwin on the other hand is interesting to me at $4100. I have been high on him for awhile and I think he could get some extra looks this game with the high total and deficit the Bucs will be facing.
TE: It seems O.J. Howard is the more targeted option when Fitz is under center. Again, they are going to be throwing the ball a lot so he is worth a look.
Bucs D/ST: ha.
QB: Brees is not on my radar being a heavy favorite.
RB: Alvin Kamara is going to highly owned and for good reason. He topped 30 DK fpts in both matchups against the Bucs last year, and that trend has a decent chance to continue. Mark Ingram is suspended and Jonathan Williams was cut which only adds to his appeal. Lock.
WR: Not too appealing here. With the lead I am expecting the Saints to have, they should be running the ball a lot to control possession and run the clock out.
Saints D/ST: High point total so not my first choice of defense. Could see the defense running an interception back though.
HOU @ NE (-6.5) o/u 51
Another high point total game that should feature lots of offense. Week 3 of last season these teams put up a combined 69 points.
QB: Deshaun Watson was exciting for the 8 weeks he played; we’ll see if he can pick up where he left off. I suspect that he will be a popular QB pick this week but one I won’t have much exposure to.
RB: I really like Lamar Miller at this price point. He is only $5100 and has literally no competition in the backfield right now.
WR: Patriots don’t have the greatest defense, but they usually focus on shutting down someone, and my guess is that it will be Hopkins. He is too expensive for me this week as I look to pay up at other positions. Will Fuller is an interesting dart throw for a tourney. He has a high ceiling, but also a very low floor and is still listed as questionable as of writing this. He should be very low owned.
TE: Ryan Griffin is an okay punt option here. Someone other than Hopkins will have to step up and it could be him. Also, for what it is worth, he had a 5-61-1 line last time they played.
HOU D/ST: pass
QB: Houston has a weak passing defense. If this game stays close, Tom Brady should be to blame for almost all of their offense. If you can fit him in your lineup, it could be worth it.
RB: Go ahead and play RB roulette here if you want. No telling who will lead this backfield on any given day. Remember when Mike Gillislee had 3 touchdowns week 1 of last year? My gut wants to say James White is the guy to play this week. Jeremy Hill is intriguing to me too just because he will have almost no ownership and could pull a Gillislee.
WR: Hogan is the target here if you need a mid range with decent upside.
TE: Got to love some Gronk. No one can guard him on this Houston defense… if it stays close he could have 10 receptions easily.
NE D/ST: not too interested here. Would rather pay up for a better matchup.
SF @ MIN (-6.5) o/u 46
Jimmy G and the new look, McKinnon-less 9ers get a tough opener in Minnesota. The other side has also bumped up the offense with the addition of Captain Kirk.
SF: I am not going to bother breaking down these guys in Minnesota. If you are looking for a play the only person I would consider is Matt Breida. Very sneaky and may see a few extra passes in the flat against this tough Vikings defense.
QB: Kirk is the new face in town and starts off with a decent matchup against the niners. Definitely in play here.
RB: Dalvin Cook is just a little too expensive for me at $6200.
WR: Diggs may be the biggest beneficiary from the Kirk signing. He is my favorite play in this game. Theilen is a bit overpriced and not in consideration for me.
MIN D/ST: Another solid squad that is always worth a look.
TEN @ MIA (+1) o/u 45
The total seems a little high to me because I am not sure who is really gonna score on these teams. Only will be watching this game to try and get a feel for the RB timeshares and to see if either QB shows improvement.
QB: Mariota on the road… I’ll pass
RB: Dion Lewis and Derrick Henry look to be in a time share. We’ll know more in a few weeks so until then I will stay away.
WR: Lots of question marks… no thank you.
TE: passing on Delanie
TEN D/ST: passing
QB: Could see Tannehil reaching value at only $5300. Punt option if you need one.
RB: Drake is interesting but loses goal line touches to Gore.
WR: Amendola could be sneaky here in the slot. Someone has to pick up Landry’s production right?
MIA D/ST: nope
CIN @ IND (-3) o/u 48
Headline of this game is the return of Andrew Luck. Not much has changed on the Cincy side. Could potentially shape up to be a shootout.
CIN: Short and sweet with this one as A.J. Green is the only player worth targeting here. Eifert may get a few redzone looks if you want to gamble on a TE.
QB: Luck is back but I won’t be taking a chance on him yet.
RB: If Mack is ruled out then Jordan Wilkins becomes a great punt option at only $3700.
WR: Cincy has good DB’s so not that excited here. Could take a flier on Ryan Grant if you want, but Keelan Cole is cheaper and has a better matchup.
TE: Ebron and Doyle are both sneaky plays at TE. They should get more looks this game with the tough WR matchups.
IND D/ST: I’ll pass.
PIT @ CLE (+4.5) o/u 41.5
One of the lower scoring affairs according to Vegas. One side we have drama from a holdout with Le’Veon, and the other side we have a team that was a part of a drama in Hard Knocks all training camp. ***Pay attention to weather updates for this one. Right now it looks like there could be rain and wind which will be a factor and changes the analysis of this game completely.***
QB: We all know Big Ben seems to play worse on the road. I am expecting more of the same in this one as the Steelers barely squeeze out the W.
RB: James Conner is super hyped up right now and for that reason I will be staying away. If he was cheaper he could be worth a look, but at $4500 there are plenty of better options. Jaylen Samuels is ony $3000 and may get more involved in this game then we think. If you want a cheap gamble he’s definitely intriguing to me. If weather is bad bump these guys up.
WR: Antonio Brown is going to have to carry this team in Week 1. Expecting a lot out of him. Juju is in play too. Again, watch the weather, these guys could be bumped down to a fade if weather looks bad.
PIT D/ST: meh maybe could be worth a look in the elements. Set up to be low scoring and defensive minded.
QB: Tyrod is the starter for now. I actually like him at his $5400 price because he can get extra points with his legs. Fade if the weather is bad.
RB: I think Hyde is going to be the lead back here with Duke in passing situations. Chubb will only be sprinkled in for now. Bump Hyde up if weather stays bad.
WR: Landry is in a prime spot here. Could be one of the lowest price points we see this year, weather permitting..
TE: Tyrod like dumping the ball off to the TE, and I like Njoku in this game regardless of the weather. Decent play at only $3400.
CLE D/ST: nah
KC @ LAC (-3) o/u 48.5
The Chiefs are going to be the Houston Rockets of the NFL this year. The offense looks deadly, but defense is definitely lacking. Chargers on the other hand look decent on both sides of the ball. Home field and the better defense gives them the edge against the 2nd year QB and defense-less Chiefs.
QB: Mahomes is too pricey for my blood.
RB: Kareem Hunt killed the Chargers last year and could do it again this year at a lower price point. His production may be hindered some by Mahomes though, so let’s see how this plays out. Still worth a look.
WR: Tyreek Hill is the target here; love the upside.
TE: Kelce has never had great games against the Chargers in the past. For that reason I will be passing on him this game. Gronk is only $500 more.
KC D/ST: what defense?
QB: Rivers is definitely in play here. Like the matchup and close spread.
RB: Melvin Gordon is more of a cash play to me. Chiefs defense is going to bad so Melvin should be under consideration to make your lineups.
WR: See above comments about the Chiefs’ defense being bad. Keenan at $7500 is a bit pricey, but then at the same time that means lower ownership.
TE: Gates is going to be a little rusty after just signing earlier this week.
LAC D/ST: more of a second tier play this week.
SEA @ DEN (-3) o/u 42.5
Battle of two teams that haven’t looked too good since Superbowl 48 back in 2013. Looks to be more of the same this year. Denver at least upgraded their offense by bringing in Case Keenum.
QB: Russell Wilson is priced very fairly on DK at $6200. With this price I don’t mind playing him.
RB: wait and see approach with this committee.
WR: Doug Baldwin has been banged up and has a tough matchup with Chris Harris jr. Not too high on any Seahawks’ WRs.
SEA D/ST: no
DEN: Only play I am interested in is Emmanuel Sanders. Theilen thrived in a similar role last year with the Vikings.
DAL @ CAR (-3) o/u 42.5
No more Witten and no more Dez. Going to see a lot of Zeke. On the other side the Panthers are looking healthy and brought Norv into town to be the new OC.
DAL: Not too exited for any Dallas player. Zeke is going to have to carry the team here as Dak has no receivers to speak of yet. Only other consideration is Dak at $5500 just because he is pretty cheap.
QB: Killa Cam is only $300 less than Brady. No thanks.
RB: Really liking McCaffrey this year. If preseason trends hold up he will be in for a huge year. In play today as well at $6400.
TE: Olsen is healthy again but is priced too high for me. I’ll either go cheap with O.J., Njoku, or Ebron, or pay up for Gronk.
CAR D/ST: No thanks
WAS @ ARI (-1) o/u 43.5
AP is back and going against his suitors from last year. Washington also added Alex Smith this offseason. On the Zona side we have a rookie QB waiting to take over and the return of David Johnson.
QB: Smith is cheap at $5600 and warrants some consideration.
RB: AP and Chris Thompson are both priced at $4700. There are better plays at that price point.
WR: I think Jamison Crowder will end up being Smith’s favorite target this year. Not sure if $5000 is worth it though yet.
TE: Jordan Reed could be in for increased production with the more conservative Smith. Like him here in this matchup too and barring injuries, he should have a bounce back season.
WAS D/ST: no thanks
QB: Bradford is healthy for now and gets to open the season at home. He could be viable at this price point.
RB: David Johnson is set to be the workhorse this game and this season. Lock and load him if you can afford it.
WR: Fitzgerald is the only receiver worth targeting. He should be in line for more targets as Sam isn’t going to have much time to drop back.
ARI D/ST: Cheap play at only $2500.