Week 16 DFS Cheat Sheet (UPDATED)
December 21, 2014 | Chet
Welcome to Week 16 of The Fake Football DFS Cheat Sheet!
With the help of our resident DFS Guru Rich Hribar, Ian Goldsmith and myself, 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 FanDuel, Draftkings, and Draftday, and with their differing settings, the picks, stats and analysis will help you on even more sites than just those four. 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.
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Sample FanDuel Lineups(by Rich Hribar)
FanDuel Lineup Configurations
Thursday Night- Saturday
Things really shape up in a bizarre fashion for week 16. Not only do we have arguably the worst Thursday night matchup ever, which is saying something, we also have two Saturday games. That means we have a Thursday-Sunday slate, a Thursday-Saturday slate and a Saturday Only game to go along with our Sunday only. Whew.
Not only is Titans at Jaguars a bad paper game, it will also feature two replacement quarterbacks in Charlie Whitehurst and Chad Henne. I cannot recommend using anyone here. While I would love to use Jacksonville as a punt play and like their matchup, the fact that they play on Thursday will boost their ownership by default. Saturday features one game with scoring potential with Philadelphia at Washington, but the other game is San Diego at San Francisco, another kick in the fantasy nether regions. So across those three games, we really have only one offense (Philly) to latch onto. I will post a Thursday-Saturday lineup but I will not be using this slate at all because it’s nearly impossible to actually even use all of your allotted cap space. If you were to select the top option at each position (which you can’t do because you can only stack up to four players from each club) it adds up to $61,100. That’s disgusting and outside of Philadelphia overlap, it’s a crapshoot on selecting the correct ancillary pieces. I do suggest playing your Sunday lineups and Saturday players in the full Thursday-Sunday slates however since the Thursday game is so poor.
Full Slate Tournament
My full slate tourney team actually has a share of that Eagles at Washington tilt, so I want to throw it out on Thursday. As bad as Sanchez has been the past two weeks, the Washington secondary has been worse. You can stack him with your preference of Maclin or Matthews as well (or both). I also really want to get DeSean Jackson out there in tournaments since Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams are just giving away touchdowns vertically. Charles Johnson and Travis Kelce are high upside, underpriced options and the backfield of Mark Ingram and C.J. Anderson is a play on volume and touchdown upside.
Full Slate Cash Lineups
I’ve got three cash lineups here. One with a cheap quarterback, one paying up at that spot and one pivot lineup in case DeMarco Murray does in fact suit up this week. If he’s out, Joseph Randle should be in nearly all of your lineups no questions asked for that price tag and matchup. Outside of him, I’m playing high volume, touchdown guys in Anderson and Ingram in a lot of places. It’s a tougher week for high end running backs across the board and I prefer starting the next tier down outside of using the ultra-expensive Le’Veon Bell (which is warranted).
I’m pretty much starting 90 percent of my lineups with Antonio Brown and working from there. His home splits and volume are salivating and he’s the perfect cash game player at receiver. On the teams with high end quarterbacks, I can afford a little safety at receiver, so on those teams I have Brown paired up with Marquess Wilson, Kenny Stills and Vincent Jackson types. The team paying down at quarterback allows you to fit in Dez Bryant and a safe receiver like Julian Edelman to go with Brown. Travis Kelce is my favorite non-Gronk play of the week, so he’s going to make it into the teams in which I’m up against the cap wall at tight end.
As for the quarterbacks, I really prefer to use Drew Brees where I can, so he’s who I would recommend when building your own offshoot cash lineups. I wish there was a larger gap from him to Matt Ryan to completely go all in on Ryan, but he’s a solid plan B. I’m likely going to use the Alex Smith lineup the most in cash games because pairing him and Randle just allows me to make the most comfortable receiving corps. Pittsburgh is handing out quarterback points, and well, points in general and Smith has a safe floor I’m fine with using.
Wrapping this up, I’m looking at a Brees/Graham stack since Graham has underperformed and his pricing is kind of in no man’s land for cash games. I’m pretty much going all in at receiver with Calvin Johnson and Brown to pair with Graham as I aim small at running back. Lamar Miller and Albert Wilson’s ceiling are scary for tournament play, but I’m shooting for heavy lifting out of my big four and Randle, who will widely owned by everyone.
Sunday Early Only
The early only slate has some intriguing options with New England, Green Bay and Detroit as huge favorites. The majority of the skill guys on those teams will cost you top shelf prices, and there’s also what are expected to be good fantasy games in Atlanta at New Orleans and Kansas City at Pittsburgh.
As mentioned in the early week portion of the cheat sheet, I’m using Antonio Brown everywhere this week. I can see paying up for Jordy Nelson and Calvin Johnson to diversify, but neither has a floor as high as Brown priced right in that same tier. I’m also using Brees as my quarterback in about 80 percent of my games this week at home against the Falcons. With DeAngelo Williams out, the projection machine loves Jonathan Stewart at his price and that makes sense given Cleveland’s inability to defend the run with all of the injuries they’ve suffered. Marques Colston, who is priced the same as Kenny Stills, but has the better matchup inside with Josh Wilson (who has been limited all week with a hand injury) is a strong WR3 play this week and Brandon LaFell is a strong start with Julian Edelman being out against the Jets secondary. Travis Kelce finishes up the receiving unit, and is underpriced this week and comes in with a great matchup against the Steelers.
Sample DraftDay Lineups (by Chet Gresham)
DraftDay Lineup Configurations
Cash Lineups: I’m going to focus these early lineups for Thursday so I won’t have any Randle/Hyde plays since we have to wait on injury news. So I’ve tried to go with guys that should play without any limits. For these cash lineups I love Brees at home against Atlanta. I have a feeling he will be in every cash LU I make. The Saints are projected to score 31 points and Dallas is second with 29, which is a reason I like Romo this week. We saw what Brees was able to do to the dumpster fire Bears defense Monday night and Stafford has already lit them up, so I’m liking him as well. Running backs are tough this week besides Le’Veon Bell who is too expensive to make a decent team around. I’ll be happy to roster Joseph Randle if he’s getting the start, but we just can’t do that with a team that locks in Thursday, so “value” plays are few and far between. I like Fred Jackson against the Raiders. He’s had 48 looks over the last two games and would have easier sledding against the Raiders this week. Lamar Miller’s price is a value and so is his matchup. I wouldn’t trust him at 10k +, but at $9150 he’s just right. Eddie Lacy is my big splurge in my cash games. His health looked fine against a strong Bills defense and he should have no trouble getting chunks of yardage in Tampa. Joique Bell already had a big game against the Bears this season and that was before Halas Hall burnt down. He’ll get plenty of work. Sammy Watkins is going to be a staple for me this week. Yes, it’s somewhat risky, but he gets a nice matchup against Oakland who is ranked 31st in DVOA against #1 receivers. He’s streaky, but this is the week to get him in your lineups. Mike Evans just scores touchdowns and Tampa will be losing to the Packers and will need to throw the ball. His price is better than I expected, especially for someone with 9 TDs in the last 7 games. Yes, his yardage numbers have decreased, but he’s proven to me that he’s a safe play as long as he’s getting targets, which he is. Kenny Stills hasn’t had another huge game like he had against the Steelers, but he’s still getting his targets and gets an amazing matchup this week against Atlanta at home. Eddie Royal should get more work with Keenan Allen out and I think Rivers will use him in many ways as an Allen replacement. Allen was a target hog with many short reads while Floyd is much more of a deep threat. I think Royal will have a nice PPR game for his price. DeSean Jackson is risky, but goes against his old team and was just called out by his coach. He should be fully healthy and ready.
Sunday Cash Games:
I like to play multiple lineups, so I’ve given you quite a few here, but with some very similar players. It may look like I’ve gone overboard, but these are the lineups I’ll be playing today. I like to spread the risk, but have many of the same core players. Those core players will be Brees, Rodgers, Brady, Romo at QB, Moncrief, Stills, Vereen, Mason, Miller, J. Bell, F. Jackson, and the Panthers. For the most part these are all safe plays for their price. There were no cheap quarterbacks I could stomach starting, so I had to spread value out. Thankfully the loss of Edelman this week helped solidify the cheap Vereen play and the same with Hilton and Moncrief. Those two are probably my top money savers today, and both have a ton of upside.
Sample Draftkings Lineups (by Ian Goldsmith)
Draftkings Lineup Configurations
OK, so with the two Saturday games, it looks like DraftKings is doing something a bit differently. You can either play the three game Thursday through Saturday slate or you can play the regular Sunday-Monday slate. You can play a slate starting Saturday, but you’ll have to join a user-created contest, so I’ll avoid making one of those lineups.
The Thursday game is an absolute mess. Oooh, yay. Tennessee and Jacksonville. How exciting?! Ugh. Looking at the players, the one glaringly obvious stat is that the highest priced player at ANY position is Jeremy Maclin at only $6,500. Wow. I honestly don’t even know what to think other than Maclin will have 90% ownership, if not more. So, with that being said…
I’m stacking Robert Griffin and the Washington WRs. Griffin looked great last week and, if it weren’t for a loose grip on the ball, would have had 25 FP. He gets a fantastic matchup against Philadelphia. While he may not do what Kirk Cousins did in Week 3 (31.58 FP), he has a fantastic shot at 20+ FP. DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon combined for nearly 60 FP in that game. Again, don’t expect that number, but 30+ is certainly possible. On the other side of the ball, Maclin is a must play, 90% owned or not. I’m also starting McCoy, who is, by far, the #1 RB on the board.
Jacksonville has looked decent on defense all year and this week they get a home matchup against the inept Titans. The other strong tournament option I considered is Philadelphia, who can take one to the house on any given play. Gates is clearly my favorite TE here. With Keenan Allen out, Rivers needs somebody to throw to on a consistent basis.
I’m going RB heavy in this cash lineup. If you want to pay up for Le’Veon, go ahead. He’s worth the $$. I’m offering an alternative look with Joique Bell, C.J. Anderson and Mark Ingram, all of whom I project to score at least 15 FP. Bell has a least 14 carries in every game since week 11, is used in the receiving game and tore up this same Bears team in Week 13 for 24.7 FP. Anderson is a workhorse for Denver, gets a large majority of goal line carries and has a fantastic matchup. Ingram gets an Atlanta team that is helpless against RBs. He scored twice against them in Week 1, if that means anything to you. At QB, Matt Ryan is my clear choice. He’s been playing very well and is in a pass-first, must win game. He could legitimately flirt with 30 FP.
At WR, Jarvis Landry and Brandon LaFell are mid-priced, PPR machines. I needed to go cheap somewhere, and Marquess Wilson gets the nod. Chicago has no chance to run against Detroit, Matt Forte or not. So, Cutler will be passing all game and Wilson should get several chances to put up points as the WR opposite Alshon Jeffrey. For a similar reason, Martellus Bennett makes an appearance here again. Rounding out the lineup, the Bills have been playing lights out and get a terrific matchup against Oakland.
So, you can do a few things here. New Orleans/Atlanta is obviously a game that people will be stacking. It’s certainly a very good idea, but I’ve gone a different way here. The only exposure I have to that game is Pierre Thomas, who gets an Atlanta team that gets torn apart by RBs that can catch the ball. Joique Bell is here again as I think he will have a big game. Also for Detroit, I’ve tapped the Matt Stafford/Calvin Johnson duo. Chicago is in shambles and has nobody that can stop that connection. Steve Smith gets a nice matchup against Houston and is cheap ($4,100) thanks to his in consistency. Albert Wilson has climbed the ranks of WRs in Kansas City (why did it take so long?!) and has put together two decent games in a row, hitting value both times. If he can score, then he’ll make for an excellent play. Also on the Chiefs, I’ve tapped Travis Kelce. While I am itching to pay up for Olsen or Bennett, Kelce offers almost as much upside and has a nice matchup against Pittsburgh, who is ranked 21st against TEs. Last, but not least, I’m not getting off of the Odell Beckham Jr. train. There is no way that you could talk me out of using him.
With the news that Julian Edelman and LeGarrette Blount are out for Sunday’s clash with the Jets, there are all of a sudden a lot more value options available. The first person to look at is Shane Vereen. At only $3,800, Vereen is a steal. While the Jets are stout against the run, they are vulnerable to running backs that can catch the ball. When the two teams met earlier this season, Vereen had 5 catches, 114 total yards and 2 TDs. While that type of output will be hard to duplicate, he has a very good chance of exceeding value. Edelman’s absence also could increase Brandon LaFell and Rob Gronkowski’s targets. If you want a high-risk, high-reward value play, then look at Danny Amendola for only $3,000.
At WR, I’m gravitating towards Andre Johnson at only $4,600. While Arian Foster is a fantastic RB, I cannot see him breaking down a Baltimore defense that has not allowed a 100 yard runner in 24 straight games. Case Keenum and Johnson actually had quite a rapport last season. If DeAndre Hopkins is indeed out, then Johnson could blow up against a Baltimore team that, somewhat surprisingly, gives up the most fantasy points to WRs this season.
These moves allowed me to move from Albert Wilson (who I still think could have a big week for Kansas City) to Jordy Nelson, who should have no problem finding separation against a Tampa Bay team that is seventh worst against WRs this season and has given up more than 40 points to the position in each of the past two weeks.
A very simple, but good start to DFS research is to look at the over/unders and odds. Obviously you want your players in games where Vegas believes the game will be high scoring and on winning teams, while your defenses should come from games they believe will be low scoring.
If the Matchup Machine isn’t sortable for you, here are the same stats in Excel that are sortable: Week 16 Sortable Matchup Stats
Sortable Matchup Machine Quarterbacks
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Quarterback for the week.
Sortable Matchup Machine Running Backs
Here you will find the matchup stats for each running back for the week.
|DEP||Running Backs||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPts||Att||Yds||YPC||RuTD||Rec||Target||Yds||RecTD||Tot Yds||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||PFF||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Wide Receivers
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Wide Receiver for the week.
|DEP||Wide Receivers||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPt||Rec||Target||Com%||Yds||TD||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||PFF||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Tight Ends
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Tight End for the week.
|DEP||Tight Ends||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPt||Rec||Target||Com%||Yds||TD||RZ Tch||RZ Tar||GL||FO||FP/$DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
Sortable Matchup Machine Defenses
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Defense for the week.
|Defense||Opp||DK||DD||FD||FanPts||Sack||Int||Fum Rec||Pts Allow||FP/%DK||FP/$DD||FP/$FD|
|New England Patriots||IND||$3,200||$8,650||$4,900||7||1.8||1||0.9||27.9||2.188||0.809||1.429|
|Green Bay Packers||@SEA||$2,900||$8,400||$4,700||5.3||2.6||0.4||0.4||23.8||1.828||0.631||1.128|
Sortable Matchup Machine Kickers
Here you will find the matchup stats for each Kicker for the week.