For the fantasy football player, success in daily fantasy formats comes down to your ability to find value, to identify players who are faced with great matchups, and to maximize the relationships among the players in your roster (otherwise known as correlation). In other words, what are this week’s best buys on the fantasy football schedule?
Each week, I’ll go through each offensive position and give you a few players I’m considering for my head-to-head lineups, as well as some of the better team defenses for you to select in order to round out those fantasy rosters. These are usually players who are getting as much volume as possible, while also coming in at value prices. I’ll also include some players I’m considering for my tournament pool play. And while things may change from when I write this until game time, I’ll do whatever I can to keep people updated on my various social media channels all the way up until kickoff.
With all of that in mind, here are my favorite plays for the four games of the NFL’s divisional round.
Josh Allen ($7,600 DraftKings, $8,800 FanDuel), Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs: This game has the highest projected total on the slate and, as such, will likely be very popular. In fact, I believe there’s a very good chance these teams will finish with over 65 or maybe even 70 real-life points. Combine that with the fact that this is the final game on the slate and sharp players will be targeting it to allow themselves maximum flexibility via late swap. The Chiefs allow 7.2 yards per pass, worst among remaining playoff teams. The combination of Allen’s passing ability, his recent rushing floor (with over 64 rushing yards in each of his last four games) and a Kansas City defense that has allowed tons of big plays throughout the season makes for a “perfect storm scenario” for Allen and the Bills offense this week.
Matthew Stafford ($6,200 DraftKings, $7,400 FanDuel), Los Angeles Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Stafford’s price on DraftKings is too cheap on a slate where 50% of the players are too cheap. The Buccaneers are the fastest operating team left in the postseason, which puts the Rams offense in a “pace up” spot here against a team against which you cannot run the ball. Tampa Bay allows a league high 40.2 passing attempts per game and the Rams (under Sean McVay) don’t throw the ball a ton to their running backs. This makes Stafford, Cooper Kupp and at least one other pass-catcher very viable double-stacking options for tournaments this week.
Aaron Rodgers ($7,100 DraftKings, $8,400 FanDuel), Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers: Rodgers and the Packers offense are rested and at home against a San Francisco defense that creates a turnover on only 9.3% of drives, worst among remaining playoff teams. Rodgers has thrown multiple touchdowns in seven straight games and in 14 of his last 15. At home this season, he has thrown 20 touchdowns with just one interception. The 49ers have allowed the fifth-most yards on passes thrown outside the numbers this season, which is exactly where Davante Adams lives and breathes. This is a very easy stacking opportunity.
Devin Singletary ($5,900 DraftKings, $7,200 FanDuel), Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs: Typically, I like to avoid running backs who are underdogs and playing on the road, but it’s tough to ignore Singletary’s upside based on his usage over the last six games for the Bills and their dynamic offense. The Chiefs allow 35.7 yards per drive — only the Lions were worse this season — and 4.6 yards per RB carry, the worst number among remaining playoff teams. Singletary has had a rushing touchdown in five straight games and multiple touchdowns in three straight contests. The big-play ability has been there as well, with a run of 15-plus yards in seven of his last eight games.
Leonard Fournette ($5,700 DraftKings, $7,000 FanDuel), Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Los Angeles Rams: I’m working under the assumption that Fournette will be activated from IR to play this weekend against the Rams. I’m happy with Fournette’s price on both sites and, as we’ve touched on many times this year, his work in the passing game has been phenomenal throughout the season. In fact, he’s had at least six catches in five of his last six games. In the case that Fournette’s hamstring is not ready to go, we can easily pivot to Ke’Shawn Vaughn at an even greater discount. Prepare for either situation in your lineup building.
AJ Dillon ($5,100 DraftKings, $6,000 FanDuel), Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers: Dillon and Aaron Jones have been splitting the RB workload for the Packers since Jones has returned from injury. It would make sense to see them both priced somewhat similarly here in the divisional round, but nothing could be further from the truth on DraftKings. Jones is being priced at $6,800 this week, a good $1,700 over Dillon’s bargain-basement cost. Dillon’s last three games have him gaining yards on 33-of-37 carries, with four-or-more yards gained over 62% of the time. Dillon provides us with massive TD upside, but he can also get there on volume alone via his work both on the ground and in the passing game.
Cooper Kupp ($8,600 DraftKings, $9,500 FanDuel), Los Angeles Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Another week of this column, another week where we talk Kupp. DraftKings has discounted so many players on this slate (Kupp included), that it’s not difficult to fit him into lineups. Teams playing Tampa Bay have accrued 72.1% of their yards through the air. Kupp has seen a touchdown in three straight games and is a likely favorite to score again this weekend.
Davante Adams ($8,500 DraftKings, $8,700 FanDuel), Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers: Teams tend to focus in on their most talented players in the postseason, which is exactly what the Packers have done with Adams over the last couple of years. In his last four playoff games, Adams has seen 35 catches for 431 yards and four touchdowns. That includes a 9-catch, 138-yard game against these same 49ers in 2019. Adams has seen multiple red zone targets in four straight Green Bay wins and in six of their last seven victories. The volume will most certainly be there and the matchup against San Francisco is a very good one.
Stefon Diggs ($6,500 DraftKings, $7,800 FanDuel), Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs allow the fourth-most yards after the catch, worst among remaining playoff teams. While it’s true that the Bills spread the ball around last week in their domination of the Patriots, Diggs saw three end zone targets in each of the final three games of the regular season. Four times this season a clear-cut WR1 has hit the 100-yard bonus and caught a touchdown against Kansas City: Ja’Marr Chase, Hunter Renfrow, Marquise Brown and the player we’re about to discuss below.
A.J. Brown ($6,200 DraftKings, $7,600 FanDuel), Tennessee Titans vs. Cincinnati Bengals: For the first time in months, the Titans are once again a fully operational battlestation, with Derrick Henry, Julio Jones and Brown all on the field at the same time. Ryan Tannehill performs much better for fantasy purposes with that trio on the field — something that has only happened on 11% of Tennessee’s dropbacks this season. Fun fact: Tannehill is averaging 9.4 yards per attempt with the band together, as opposed to just 5.2 yards with those three all off the field — which has happened on 24.6% of his dropbacks! Tennessee now faces a Bengals defense that allows a completion on 48.8% of deep passes, worst among remaining playoff teams.
Rob Gronkowski ($5,800 DraftKings, $7,100 FanDuel), Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Los Angeles Rams: Gronkowski has totaled nine-plus targets in seven of his last eight games, in part due to the lack of veteran depth in the Buccaneers’ WR room as a result of either injury or, well, players walking off the field in the middle of games. No remaining team hits the quarterback less often than the Rams. If you give Tom Brady a clean pocket, he’s going to find Gronkowski more often than not.
Tyler Higbee ($4,000 DraftKings, $5,400 FanDuel), Los Angeles Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The Rams’ blowout in the wild-card round led to very few targets for everyone on that offense, simply because they didn’t have to throw the ball very much at all. Higbee should see a return to his usual six-plus targets. In the three weeks prior to the playoffs, he was targeted on 26.3% of his routes, compared to the 16.1% target rate he’d managed up to that point this season. With four red zone targets over his last four games, Higbee brings solid volume and TD upside at a good price.
C.J. Uzomah ($3,100 DraftKings, $5,500 FanDuel), Cincinnati Bengals at Tennessee Titans: Uzomah stands out as the best low-dollar tight end, if you’re looking for extra value and punting the position. Tennessee allows 3.4 red zone drives per game and 10.6 yards per completion, the worst among remaining playoff teams in both of those categories.
Disclaimer: Al Zeidenfeld (Username: Al_Smizzle) plays on his personal account in games for which he offers advice. He may also deploy different players/strategies than what he advises.