Alright! We are getting to the fun part of the NFL season! Thanksgiving is upon us (look for a special DFS article by Wednesday afternoon for the 3 game slate on Turkey Day) and we have plenty of in-season data at our fingertips to make very well informed decisions regarding our DFS lineups.
Yours truly was at the Big Game last night (Stanford looked awful!) so this article will be shorter than usual and won't have quite the rigorous analysis of previous articles. Still, much thought has gone into my roster construction for Week 11. The marquee game that most people will be eyeing is Dallas - Kansas City. While it is nice to be contrarian, you would be foolish to completely leave this game off your radar. Both Dallas and Kansas City rank 4th and 5th, respectively, with Total Offense DVOA. As for Passing Offense DVOA, Dallas is 2nd and Kansas City is 8th. Plus having a few afternoon players gives you a chance to get creative with your late swaps depending on how your morning player pan out (more on that strategy later).
So which QB do we take then between Dak Prescott or Patrick Mahomes? If you have been reading my articles lately, the answer is easy. The Chiefs' defense has been terrible this year ranking 30th in Total Defense DVOA, 27th in Pass Defense DVOA, and 26th with Rush Defense DVOA. Here is how Pro Bowl level QBs have fared against the Chiefs this season.
Lamar Jackson (Week 2): 37.3 DK points & 34.3 FD points.
Justin Herbert (Week 3): 30.8 DK points & 30.8 FD points.
Josh Allen (Week 5): 40.2 DK points & 37.2 FD points.
All three of those QBs realized at least 4x value on both DraftKings and FanDuel. When you consider that their pricing is in the $7-8K range, you are establishing a phenomenal anchor for your team. As for pairings with Dak Prescott, I will rely on two metrics: player correlation coefficient and air yards. With Amari Cooper out, Prescott correlates well with both Cee Dee Lamb and Michael Gallup. You could probably give Cedrick Wilson or Dalton Schultz a shot. I would only do so if your morning players have subpar performances and you need differentiation. That is why giving yourself several late swap options can be advantageous in DFS where game theory is paramount. Of course if your morning players shine, stick with the chalk so that you maintain your lead.
You will want to run back your Dak stack (love the rhymes!) with a KC player. I really like Travis Kelce. He is incredibly consistent and still shows up even if the Chiefs lose. Plus Prescott correlates best with opposing tight ends this season compared to other positions.
As for RBs, I would avoid the high priced options, especially since we are already paying up for our DAL-KC stack. There are three RBs I love who should each have at least 20 touches and serve as their teams 3-down backs. They are also reasonably priced. So who are they? A.J. Dillon, Mark Ingram, and Jeff Wilson. Thanks to injuries to the typical starters, these three RBs will be asked to shoulder a heavy load today. The matchups are beatable and their head coaches love to run the ball.
At this juncture, we have just two more positions to fill: WR and DST. Remember DK Metcalf? I sure do! He won me a fantasy championship last year! His price has come down and his numbers are down but that is for one big reason: Russell Wilson was out from Weeks 6 - 8 and missed a good portion of Week 5. While Metcalf has still scored TDs in Wilson's absence, his number of targets and receiving yards are down. Last year Metcalf was a strong candidate every week for 9 - 12 targets and 100 receiving yards. Metcalf's price on DK is $6800 which is absurdly low should Wilson return to his normal self today. Just do the math for a typical day for Metcalf from last year: 6 receptions, 100 yards, and 1 TD. With the 3 point bonus for cracking 100 receiving yards, you are looking at 25 DK points. That is already 3.67x value on DK. Now, what if Metcalf gets 10 receptions, 150 yards, and 2 TDs? That is a slate breaking performance and not out of the question.
Another WR to consider is Elijah Moore. His air yards are great and now he gets a real QB throwing to him. He is cheap and ownership should not be too high. He is better for DK than FD given the full PPR and potential 100 yard bonus.
As for DST, I like Cleveland for DK and Tennessee for FD. The pricing is right and they have juicy matchups at home against inferior offenses. FYI, both Detroit and Houston rank 31st and 32nd, respectively, with Total Offense DVOA. Don't over think it. Just get the best matchups.
Here are some sample lineups for both DK and FD. I am planting my flag with Dak Prescott and so should you if you look to hit the cash line today. Good luck!