Week 15 DFS Cheat Sheet: FantasyDraft and Yahoo! (UPDATED) December 18, 2016  |  Ian Goldsmith

Welcome to Week 15 of the 2016 The Fake Football FantasyDraft and Yahoo! DFS Cheat Sheet!

. With the help of our resident DFS Gurus Doug Shain, Chet Gresham, and Justin Bales we have put together a comprehensive NFL DFS Cheat Sheet with matchup stats, analysis, picks, sample lineups and lineup configuration advice. We have picks for FantasyDraft and Yahoo!, and with their differing settings, the picks, stats and analysis will help you on even more sites than just those two. And with a week between games we will update our picks and analysis as the week progresses. You will receive your Cheat Sheet on Wednesday, in time for the Thursday night games and then we will update the sheet on Sunday mornings to make sure you don’t miss any breaking news. And even though we will have more info, more stats, more picks and just more everything in our NFL sheets, we will not be raising the price. Each sheet will remain $1.99 each just like our baseball and basketball sheets. One Month ($6.99) And as a subscriber you will receive an email as soon as the new Cheat Sheet is posted on Wednesday of each week and then an update on Sunday mornings.


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Cheat Sheet


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Injury Update (Sunday):

Adrian Peterson will get the start against the Colts. There are too many red flags about his return for me to have any real faith in him. Throw him in a GPP.

Ty Montgomery is expected to start. I like him in a matchup where he could see a lot of work.

Aaron Rodgers will start, but will also be watched closely in the frigid temperatures. If he has any kind of set back, he will be pulled.

A.J. Green won’t play.

Eric Ebron, Jordan Matthews, Dorial Green-Beckham, Dez Bryant, Matt Asiata, Amari Cooper, and Michael Crabtree will all play.



Philly at Baltimore: Showers, mainly before 4pm. Patchy fog before 10am. Temperature falling to around 43 by 5pm. Windy, with a southwest wind 14 to 19 mph becoming northwest 21 to 26 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 39 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.

This forecast is not great for much of anything, but the run game should remain okay and the Ravens defense could see some more free points.

Cleveland at Buffalo: A chance of snow, mainly before 11am. Cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a temperature falling to around 19 by 5pm. Blustery, with a west wind 15 to 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.

The wind is the main concern here. It’s not out of control, but could hamper Tyrod a bit, though he should be able to run plenty.

Green Bay at Chicago: Sunny and cold, with a temperature falling to around 1 by 5pm. Wind chill values as low as -18. Blustery, with a north northwest wind 15 to 20 mph decreasing to 10 to 15 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.

The winds and bitter cold are the concerns here. They should still be able to pass, but the gears aren’t going to be oiled up.

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati: Scattered flurries before 3pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 27. Northwest wind 9 to 14 mph.

It will be cold and a little breezy, but for the most part this game should be all systems go for your fantasy players.

Tennessee at Kansas City: Sunny and cold, with a high near 12. Wind chill values between -1 and -11. North northwest wind 5 to 7 mph becoming calm in the afternoon.

Bitterly cold, but no wind. It really will depend on how well players manage the cold, but expect a slight slow down in overall production.

Detroit at NY Giants:  Rain between 1pm and 4pm, then a chance of showers after 4pm. Some of the storms could produce heavy rainfall. Patchy fog before 10am. Temperature rising to near 53 by 11am, then falling to around 40 during the remainder of the day. Southwest wind 16 to 18 mph becoming northwest in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 29 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New precipitation amounts between a quarter and half of an inch possible.

Looks like each drive may have a different set of weather. But if the rain and wind get going together, that is not a happy grouping for fantasy.

New England at Denver: Sunny, with a high near 26. Wind chill values as low as -7. South southwest wind around 5 mph becoming calm.

It will be chilly, but compared to many games, this one is close to perfect.



Injury Report:

Julio Jones is out against the 49ers this week, which should elevate Mohamed Sanu and Taylor Gabriel’s targets. Both make for good starts this week as well as Tevin Coleman, who could see an increase in work as well.

Theo Riddick is out and Zach Zenner is questionable. Zenner still needs to pass concussion protocol, so Dwayne Washington is currently set up for a big workload against the Giants, who are a tough defense, but not a shutdown defense. Washington will likely need to get into the end zone to bring back top value, but he should get his chances.

Bilal Powell should be the lead back for the Jets Saturday night and if Matt Forte were to be active, he would take a secondary role according to beat writers. Hopefully they just sit Forte so we don’t have to worry about it.

Kelvin Benjamin will play against Washington, but his health is less than 100 percent and Josh Norman will shadow him. I rather not play him if you can help it. Ted Ginn has more upside.

Cam Newton was limited this week with a bum shoulder, but was able to get a full practice in on Saturday. His accuracy has been even worse than usual recently, so the shoulder could be a factor. He still has upside due to his rushing ability, but he’s outside my Top-12 quarterbacks this week.

Adrian Peterson has been activated from injured reserve and will play against Indianapolis. The Vikings offensive line is not healthy or good at the moment and the Vikings have become a shotgun offense during Peterson’s absence. He of course has touchdown ability, especially in a good matchup, but his overall upside is still pretty low after showing nothing before his injury.

Melvin Gordon is out and Kenneth Farrow will start in his place. Farrow was thrust into the starting position early last week and ended up missing a block that got Philip Rivers strip sacked, so there is some worry that Ronnie Hillman could see more work on passing downs, but coach Mike McCoy gave Farrow some praise this week and seems to be backing him as the main back in this game. He’ll face a weak run defense in Oakland and has enough upside for his price in DFS and should be a safe play in most redraft leagues.

Ryan Griffin will get the start at tight end with C.J. Fiedorowicz out with a concussion. Unfortunately he faces a tough Jaguars pass defense, but Brock Osweiler loves throwing to his tight ends and should elevate him enough to be useful this week.

Jermaine Gresham is listed as questionable, but looks like he’ll be a go in a decent matchup with the Saints. Gresham has seen more work of late with John Brown’s illness and Michael Floyd hitting the skids.

Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper are listed as questionable, but it appears both should play their normal roles. Both must be started in redraft, but are a little trickier in DFS.

Mark Ingram says he feels better this week than in the previous two concerning his toe and he is not on the injury report. He should be all systems go and a must start in most redraft leagues, but does get a tough matchup.

Michael Thomas is also off the injury report and will start in Arizona. Much will depend on if Patrick Peterson shadows Brandin Cooks and lets Thomas go or vice-versa, but if he’s healthy, you have to start Thomas.

A.J. Green will go through warm-ups to see where he is, but he is also listed as doubtful and would likely be on a strict snap count if he were to miraculously play. Give Tyler Eifert the most upside for the Bengals this week.

Ty Montgomery should get the start at running back for the Packers this week in Chicago, where it is going to be bitterly cold. Expect both running games to be used often.

Jordan Reed seems to be getting better and is showing more flexibility in practice. He also gets an extra day due to the Monday night game, so I’m going ahead and slotting Reed into all my lineups.

Marquess Wilson broke his foot and Eddie Royal is out, which makes Alshon Jeffery and Cameron Meredith the top two targets most likely. The weather is worrisome though and Jeffery’s four-week absence is also troubling. The matchup is good, but Jordan Howard is my favorite Bears play this week.

Darren Sproles is out with a concussion and Doug Pederson said Kenjon Barner and Byron Marshall would fill the “Sproles Role,” which makes both fairly useless in fantasy. Ryan Mathews will be the mainstay in the backfield, but does get a tough matchup in Baltimore.

Donte Moncrief won’t play due to a hamstring injury, so T.Y. Hilton will dominate the wide receiver targets as usual. He faces a tough Vikings defense, but his extra targets still make him a top start.

Chris Ivory has been taken off the injury report and will play, but T.J. Yeldon looks to have won the lead role. The Texans are still a tough matchup though and Ivory’s return makes both hard sells this week.




Sample FantasyDraft Lineups



GPP1 Updated





GPP4 Updated

FantasyDraft Lineup Configurations


                  Let this be your weekly reminder that we are not trying to come in first place in a cash game, we are merely trying to finish in the top half of our tournaments. This means that we are going to worry a lot more about our floor than our ceiling. I write that every week but this week I paid close attention to that concept of a high floor. I think that WR is a really volatile position this weekend so I don’t want to spend up there. Yes, players like Mike Evans have a high ceiling but he killed us the last two weeks and I need players that I’m sure will hit that floor that I’m looking for. At QB this week I’m really worried about some of the bigger names for a variety of reasons. I don’t want to spend up at QB and then get skunked with a Drew Brees-like 0 TD, 3 INT game. For that reason, I decided that I was going to get the highest floor I could get this weekend by loading up on the RB position. I blew every bit of salary space I could on securing the services of the three most reliable in the game: David Johnson, LeVeon Bell, and LeSean McCoy. All three have rock solid matchups and the highest floor of any players in football. I would like to think that I could score a cash just on the efforts of those three players alone and everything else is gravy. Kenneth Dixon is my Flex because I think he’s underpriced on this site and should have no problem hitting value as long as he gets back to 15+ touches. Trevor Siemian has averaged 40 pass attempts per game over his last four starts. Having that kind of volume, with the talent he is surrounded by, is a great way to secure points for cheap at QB. Inman and Lee both lack major upside but both are also seeing 5+ targets a game and don’t require much to pay off their paltry salaries. The same thing can be said about Jermaine Gresham. He keeps hitting value every week over the last month or so. Dallas isn’t a defense I’m hot for but they were what I could afford, they play at home, and Jameis Winston isn’t without flaw.


As I’ve been doing recently, I decided to narrow down the field of potential plays to those guys that I highlighted on this week’s Cheat Sheet. This allowed me to mix and match players that I felt strongly about while not deviating too much from what lead me to put those players on the sheet in the first place.

The more I think about configuring GPP lineups, the more I realize it’s about having a core group of players and then finding different iterations of players at the remaining positions. You’ll see that I didn’t always include every one of my staple plays but most of them show up in most of my lineups. By using them consistently and then shifting the supporting cast, I’m increasing my potential to hit a big score if my core guys go off. The reason I picked those players as my core group is that I’m finding there is a lot of value out there with the pass catchers. My staple plays this week are David Johnson, LeSean McCoy, Dontrelle Inman, Charles Clay, Ladarius Green, and the Giants D/ST.

I have been trying very hard to talk myself out of a Johnson/McCoy stack but I just can’t. They are in such great positions, and I trust myself to find value too much, to not just jump all over them. I usually worry about going to top heavy with my lineups but with guys like Inman, Lamar Miller, Isaiah Crowell, Willie Snead, Alshon Jeffery, and LeGarrette Blount priced low you can find a combination of upside players to put with Johnson and McCoy and not suffer from having to go with a total stars and scrubs approach. I love Kenneth Dixon this week but you’ll notice that I only had to reach down that low once to make my lineups work. A lot of that comes from the value plays mentioned above but a lot of that also comes from the inexpensive stacks I’m using with Cousins/Garcon, Palmer/DJ, Siemian/Demaryius, and Rivers/Inman. None of them are going to break the bank like Brees/Cooks, Winston/Evans, Rodgers/Nelson, or Ben/Brown would. Being excited about two $5.6k players (Clay and the Giants D/ST) doesn’t hurt either.


Sample Yahoo! Lineups

Thursday/Monday GPP


Sunday 50/50 (Updated)

Sunday GPP (Updated)



Yahoo! Lineup Configurations


If you’re playing the Thursday slate, it seems almost necessary to start your lineup with the Seahawks defense based on the Vegas line. Once I inserted them, I moved onto my stack, including Derek Carr, Latavius Murray, and Amari Cooper. The Raiders have one of the best team totals on the slate, and they are an extremely explosive offense. I added Tevin Coleman to the lineup, as he is playing a fairly big role right now for the Falcons, and he gets an elite matchup against the 49ers. Jermaine Gresham is still too cheap for the amount of targets he’s getting on a weekly basis. Jeremy Kerley is also a great option, as the 49ers are likely going to be throwing the ball for most of the game, and he’s a cheap player with great upside. Demaryius Thomas and Sefon Diggs rounded out the team, and they are both fairly cheap, although they generally see a healthy amount of targets on a weekly basis.


I opted to use the trusted Redskins stack for cash games, as they get a great matchup and have a high team total. I stacked Kirk Cousins with Jamison Crowder and Pierre Garcon, as they are two of his favorite targets. I also used a pair of Vikings in Jerick McKinnon and Adam Thielen, who are both a bit too cheap and get a great matchup against the Colts this week. Jermaine Gresham was another salary relief option, and he should see plenty of targets to cover his price tag this week. That allowed me to pay up for David Johnson, who has been the most consistent running back in the NFL this season. I then add LeGarrette Blount, who continues to be a weekly touchdown threat. Last, the Green Bay defense fit into my lineup. They have been playing much better in the last few weeks, and they get a great matchup against the Bear.


I started this team with a stack of the Bengals. Dalton hasn’t had to throw much over the last two weeks because those games were easy wins, but it will be much more difficult for them this week. I opted to stack Andy Dalton with Jeremy Hill and Tyler Eifert, but this could change if A.J. Green is somehow able to suit up this week. I also used Antonio Brown, who is a low risk, high upside player from that game, as I believe it could turn into a shootout. Tevin Coleman is a bit too cheap for his upside, especially in an elite matchup against the 49ers. Robby Anderson has been seeing a ridiculous amount of targets over the last two weeks, but his price tag doesn’t represent that. The Jets are likely trying to see what they have in their young receiver, and it gives him great upside for fantasy. Amari Cooper and Emmanuel Sanders are also two receivers that see a ton of targets each week, and they both come with elite upside.


Hey folks, Ian here. There are a ton of websites out there that offer their own version of DFS optimizers. Most of them are really well done. Of course, most of them cost an arm and a leg too. The thing is, for all the good an optimizer does, at the end of the day it still only gives you a starting point on which to base your lineup. You need to still come up with projections. I’m not a programmer, but I use Excel extensively in my day job as an economist. So, I thought I’d try and figure out a way to create a basic optimizer and share it with you all. It’s not fancy. This doesn’t have some kind of eye-candy GUI. However, it works. And, at the end of the day, that’s what matters. As for projections, I’m a big believer in the wisdom of crowds. This basic optimizer uses a mixture of projections from a number of different sites. If you want to do this yourself in the future and don’t want to do any kind of tedious regression analysis, I’d recommend using the FantasyPros Consensus Projections as a starting point. After getting averages of what many different experts think will happen on Sunday, you can then make tweaks of your own. To make this, I watched a lot of Youtube videos and used much of my previous Excel knowledge, much I learned through my local library (Libraries are awesome!). That is to say, this is relatively easy to make on your own given a little patience. To use this optimizer, you’ll need Excel 2010 or later. If you have that, then click on one of the two links below (or both!), depending on which site you are playing. Thanks, and have fun!!


FantasyDraft Optimizer!

Yahoo! Optimizer!

Optimizer Instructions

Optimized Lineups

FantasyDraft SAT-MON

FantasyDraft Sunday Only

Yahoo! SAT-MON

Yahoo! Sunday Only

NOTES: Remember, these lineups are just a first run through the optimizer with adjusted consensus stats from several places online. You can always remove players you don’t want to include.



A very simple, but good start to DFS research is to look at the over/unders and odds. Obviously you want your players in games where Vegas believes the game will be high scoring and on winning teams, while your defenses should come from games they believe will be low scoring.


TeamOpponentLineMoneylineOver/UnderImplied Points
NEPvs. HOU-15-130044.529.75
DALvs. GBP-4.5-21052.528.5
ATLvs. SEA-5-22551.528.25
GBP@ DAL4.518052.524
SEA@ ATL519551.523.25
KCCvs. PIT-1.5-1274422.75
PIT@ KCC1.51074421.25
HOU@ NEP1587544.514.75




 2016 Stats


Excel: Week 15 Matchup Charts YAHOO-FANDRAFT 2016 Stats



Sortable Matchup Machine Quarterbacks (2016 Stats)

Here you will find the matchup stats for each Quarterback for the week.

Russell WilsonSEA@ATL$13,000$3364.50%6.9280.91.90.833.90.0619.124
Dak PrescottDALGB$11,300$3064.70%8.1287.
Aaron RodgersGB@DAL$15,400$4067.40%6.9273.51.60.623.60.0616.519
Brock OsweilerHOU@NE$10,000$2161.90%6.8251.81.30.825.10.1315.622
Ben RoethlisbergerPIT@KC$12,400$3258.50%6.9257.
Alex SmithKCPIT$10,600$2564.50%7256.61.30.823.70.0614.613
Matt RyanATLSEA$13,300$3662.0%7.3242.810.732.80.1914.411
Tom BradyNEHOU$14,300$3761.10%6.62141.30.734.70.19149


Sortable Matchup Machine Running Backs (2016 Stats)

Here you will find the matchup stats for each running back for the week.

RB1Spencer WareKCPIT$10,200$1920.890.
RB2Charcandrick WestKCPIT$6,700$1120.890.
RB1Thomas RawlsSEA@ATL$13,000$2218.981.
RB2Alex CollinsSEA@ATL$7,000$1018.981.
RB1Le'Veon BellPIT@KC$19,900$4123.3103.
RB1LeGarrette BlountNEHOU$10,900$3121.481.
RB2Dion LewisNEHOU$7,700$1821.481.
RB1Ezekiel ElliottDALGB$16,100$3520.684.
RB1Devonta FreemanATLSEA$11,000$2723.8813.40.84.33806.611915.90.520.82
RB2Tevin ColemanATLSEA$8,800$1723.8813.40.84.33806.611915.90.520.82
RB1Ty MontgomeryGB@DAL$10,000$1717.871.640.54.934.50.136.3106.114.80.610.68
RB2Christine MichaelGB@DAL$8,400$1517.871.640.54.934.50.136.3106.114.80.610.68
RB1Lamar MillerHOU@NE$10,600$2020.
RB2Alfred BlueHOU@NE$6,400$1020.


Sortable Matchup Machine Wide Receivers (2016 Stats)

Here you will find the matchup stats for each Wide Receiver for the week.

DEPWide ReceiversTmOppFanDrafYahooRec/GReYd/GReYd/TarTD/GT/GCom. %FPPGFO
WR1Dez BryantDALGB$12,300$2513.2189.18.81.621.661.20%28.9420
WR2Cole BeasleyDALGB$9,800$1613.2189.18.81.621.661.20%28.9420
WR3Terrance WilliamsDALGB$6,000$1213.2189.18.81.621.661.20%28.9420
WR1Doug BaldwinSEA@ATL$15,300$2613.9162.
WR2Jermaine KearseSEA@ATL$6,400$1013.9162.
WR1Antonio BrownPIT@KC$18,000$4013.6177.47.40.924.156.60%22.914
WR2Eli RogersPIT@KC$7,700$1313.6177.47.40.924.156.60%22.914
WR3Sammie CoatesPIT@KC$6,000$1013.6177.47.40.924.156.60%22.914
WR1Julio JonesATLSEA$16,000$3112.6161.47.90.820.461.7%22.0611
WR3Taylor GabrielATLSEA$8,700$1812.6161.47.90.820.461.7%22.0611
WR2Mohamed SanuATLSEA$7,800$1312.6161.47.90.820.461.70%22.0611
WR1Jordy NelsonGB@DAL$14,000$3214.2164.17.10.923.161.50%21.3619
WR2DaVante AdamsGB@DAL$13,300$2514.2164.17.10.923.161.50%21.3619
WR3Randall CobbGB@DAL$10,600$2214.2164.17.10.923.161.50%21.3619
WR1DeAndre HopkinsHOU@NE$10,900$1911.9156.37.20.921.655.20%20.6822
WR2Will FullerHOU@NE$7,000$1111.9156.37.20.921.655.20%20.6822
WR1Julian EdelmanNEHOU$12,700$1911.6137.86.80.820.356.90%19.069
WR2Malcolm MitchellNEHOU$9,200$1511.6137.86.80.820.356.90%19.069
WR3Chris HoganNEHOU$7,700$1211.6137.86.80.820.356.90%19.069
WR2Tyreek HillKCPIT$10,400$2113.8152.870.621.863.20%1913
WR1Jeremy MaclinKCPIT$8,400$1413.8152.870.621.863.20%1913
WR3Chris ConleyKCPIT$6,000$1013.8152.870.621.863.20%1913


Sortable Matchup Machine Tight Ends (2016 Stats)

Here you will find the matchup stats for each Tight End for the week.

Tight EndsTmOppFanDrafYahooRec/GReYd/GReYd/TaT/GTD/GFPPGFO
Jared CookGB@DAL$7,700$147.474.
Jimmy GrahamSEA@ATL$9,200$185.360.
Jason WittenDALGB$7,000$175.462.387.80.386
Travis KelceKCPIT$11,400$224.956.
Austin HooperATLSEA$5,600$104.653.
C.J. FiedorowiczHOU@NE$7,100$134.644.
Ladarius GreenPIT@KC$7,400$153.945.
Martellus BennettNEHOU$7,800$


Sortable Matchup Machine Defenses (2016 Stats)

Here you will find the matchup stats for each Defense for the week.

DefenseOppFanDrafYahooOff PointsSackIntFum RecDefTDRetTDFPPG
New England PatriotsHOU$7,800$2016.9210.
Atlanta FalconsSEA$5,000$1621.
Pittsburgh Steelers@KC$5,600$1322.
Dallas CowboysGB$5,200$1227.
Kansas City ChiefsPIT$6,700$1924.
Green Bay Packers@DAL$5,500$1326.
Seattle Seahawks@ATL$5,900$1631.
Houston Texans@NE$4,600$1027.



You can find this chart HERE, but we wanted to make it sortable for you. It breaks down the rankings for defenses against WR1, WR2, “Other” WR, TE and RB against the pass.

RkTMRk vs. #1 WRPa/GYd/GRk vs. #2 WRPa/GYd/GRk vs. Other WRPa/GYd/GRk vs. TEPa/GYd/GRk vs. RBPa/GYd/G




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2016 Cheat Sheets

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