The Daily Dose – DraftKings

By Bryan Sweet, DFW Senior Writer and Co-Owner, @FantasyFreakDFW

Welcome to your DFS Daily Dose!  Our goal with this article is to bring to light some players who can help you profit in daily fantasy football.  If you’re new to the scene, I suggest you read this post to get a general overview of what we’re going to be talking about in this article every week.  Once you’ve finished getting caught up, rejoin us for some strategy for taking down both cash games and GPPs on DraftKings.

We’re working with a short week this week with the majority of the games on Saturday because of Christmas.  As such, we’re going to forgo looking back at last week but I can tell you with absolute certainty it was BAD.  I say we wash that bitter taste out of our mouth with some winning lineups.  Let’s look at who we’re targeting for week 16.


Cash games are the bankroll builders of daily fantasy football.  Everyone wants to hit a life-changing GPP, but you’ve got to have money to enter those tournaments.  If you can be successful in cash games, and play a higher dollar amount in these versus GPPs, you should be able to build a sustainable bankroll to last throughout the season and beyond.  So, who are some targets on DraftKings that can help lead us to a profit in cash games?

Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis Colts ($7,000, 22.6 projected points)
Luck has consistently been posting numbers that get him to 3X value, or slightly better, this season which makes him the perfect cash game target.  He’s not putting up the 30-40 point games needed to win tournaments, but he’s also not putting up 10-12 point clunkers which cause you to miss the cash line.  Saturday, Luck gets a date with the Oakland Raiders who have been generous to opposing passers all season.  Expect Luck to have another solid day and carry cash game lineups along with it.

Jordan Howard, RB, Chicago Bears ($6,300, 19.1 projected points)
While it’s been beneficial to pay up at the RB position in our cash games, the short slate this week might force owners to spend down for at least one RB and Howard seems to be the safest bet of the lower-priced RBs.  Howard has taken over the backfield for Chicago and gets the porous Washington run defense this week.  With Matt Barkley proving at least competent at QB for Chicago, Howard should get some chances at a short TD and will almost certainly be a big part of the offense as the Bears look to limit Barkley’s exposure this week.

Jordy Nelson, WR, Green Bay Packers ($7,000, 20.4 projected points)
Much like Andrew Luck above, Nelson has been as consistent as they come at the WR position recently.  His rapport with Aaron Rodgers appears to be back as he has seen double-digit targets in five of his last eight games and regularly hits the magic 3X value threshold we look for in our cash game lineups.  Despite the seemingly difficult matchup this week against Minnesota, Luck proved last week they are beatable through the air and Nelson figures to be a big part of Green Bay’s continued march toward the playoffs and the NFC North crown.

Utilizing these players, and remembering our goals of 120 total points and players with consistently high floors, we could put together a lineup consisting of the following.

QB Andrew Luck/IND $7,000 22.6
RB Jordan Howard/CHI $6,300 19.1
RB Bilal Powell/NYJ $6,000 17.2
WR Jordy Nelson/GB $7,000 20.4
WR Rishard Matthews/TEN $4,900 14.7
WR Michael Crabtree/OAK $6,100 17.6
TE Cameron Brate/TB $3,900 13.7
FLEX Rob Kelley/WAS $5,200 15.7
DEF New England Patriots $3,500 14.2
TOTAL $50,000 155.2

It looks like Matt Forte is going to miss the Jets-Patriots game, immediately making Powell a value play.  Powell is skilled as a receiver, so he should be a three-down back on Saturday.  Rishard Matthews seems to have taken over the #1 WR role in Tennessee, and he provides a nice discount for that role.  Crabtree and Brate are red zone monsters and provide TD-upside every week.  Kelley is still underpriced as the primary RB in Washington.


Life. Changing. Money.  That’s the draw for GPPs with seven-figure top prizes and low entry fees, but how can one be taken down?  The easy answer is it can’t without everything going your way, but we can try and tilt those odds just a little by focusing on those with high ceilings and low projected ownership.  Let’s see if we can find some of the players who fit that bill.

Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers ($6,600, 20.1 projected points)
I realize Newton has not had the type of fantasy season he put together last year, but how many QBs have had that type of season before?  The Panthers are just playing out the season at this point, but this is still too low a price for the premiere dual-threat QB in the NFL.  A date with the Atlanta Falcons doesn’t hurt, either, as they have been lit up by elite QBs all season.  Newton has been tough to trust this year, but he should produce tournament value this week.

Frank Gore, RB, Indianapolis Colts ($4,800, 13.5 projected points)
Gore is on the down side of his career, but he still can put together a solid fantasy day when given the opportunity.  Many will likely shy away from Gore as he seems to have ceded some (all?) of the goal line work to Robert Turbin in recent weeks, but this is the Raiders we’re talking about and they have been atrocious against the run this season.  At such a low price, if Gore can manage a TD, he should easily eclipse 4X value and bring a great return at low ownership.

Michael Thomas, WR, New Orleans Saints ($6,000, 16.6 projected points)
Thomas was a fantasy darling for the majority of the season, but an injury that caused him to miss the week 14 game combine with Brandin Cooks’ standout performance last week will likely cause many to overlook the talented rookie.  Thomas stands out as the preferred WR target on New Orleans this week, however, because of his height advantage over Vernon Hargreaves.  Hargreaves has actually allowed the most receiving yards by a CB this season, further solidifying this selection.

Here is what one of my lineups will look like this week, including the players I listed above.

QB Cam Newton/CAR $6,600 20.1
RB Frank Gore/IND $4,800 13.5
RB David Johnson/ARI $9,200 24.0
WR Michael Thomas/NO $6,000 16.6
WR Jordy Nelson/GB $7,000 20.4
WR Rishard Matthews/TEN $4,900 14.7
TE Cameron Brate/TB $3,900 13.7
FLEX Jerick McKinnon/MIN $4,000 13.4
DEF New England Patriots $3,600 14.2
TOTAL $50,000 150.6

The savings we got at our RB1 and FLEX positions allowed us to fit in the RB with the highest floor in Johnson.  He possesses a high ceiling as well, so he isn’t a terrible fit in our GPP lineup.  McKinnon should see the start with Adrian Peterson having been ruled out, giving him immediate value.  His role in the passing game also helps on a full-PPR site like DraftKings.  We’ve got some crossover with our cash game lineup otherwise, which highlights how much we like those players this week.

Well, there’s my prescription for taking down cash games and GPPs on DraftKings in week 16.  We’ll schedule a follow up appointment for next Saturday to see how we did and look ahead to week 17.  Best of luck!