If you are playing DraftKings or FanDuel (or any other daily fantasy football tournament) today, I strongly urge you to select Drew Brees or Aaron Rodgers. Here are my reasons why.
The Saints and Packers are near the top in the league in Pass Attempts/Rush Attempts Ratio for offense. In fact, the Saints rank as #4 with 308 pass attempts to 170 rush attempts and the Packers rank as #12 with 275 pass attempts to 170 rush attempts.
What's even more glaring is that the Packers have had to really embrace the passing game the last two weeks given their depleted backfield. They passed 56 times compared to running it 23 times in their game against Chicago two weeks ago and passed 38 times compared to running it 19 times last week against Atlanta. With Eddie Lacy on IR and James Starks ruled out for today, expect a pass heavy offense for Green Bay.
As for the Saints, their identity has been passing since Brees came to the Big Easy in 2006. Since 2008, Brees and Rodgers arguably have been two of the most prolific passers in the NFL with of course Peyton Manning and Tom Brady being at the top as well. It should be no surprise that 4 of the last 7 Super Bowls have been won by those 4 QBs and that there is a combined 8 Super Bowl titles and 12 Conference Championships among them. With Brady on bye and the elder Manning retired, going with Brees or Rodgers means you are taking the best QB the league has to offer.
Now we get into the matchups since even great QBs can have a bad day. Well not today! The 49ers and the Colts both have horrendous defenses. They rank 29th and 31st in defense, respectively, according to the GE model. If you dig deeper, the 3rd down defense for each of those teams is awful. The 49ers defense allows 43.6% of third downs they face to be converted while the Colts defense allows 43%. Needless to say those numbers rank in the bottom 10 of the league. Guess which offenses rank as #1 and #2 with third down conversion? You guessed it! The Packers are #1 with 51.6% and the Saints are #2 with 51%. Both teams should have no problem moving the chains today.
As you can imagine, Brees and Rodgers are the two most expensive QBs for today but of course for good reason as detailed by the analysis here. You can probably pay down for tight end by getting Antonio Gates or Kyle Rudolph. Charcandrick West will be a strong RB play and he's cheap. I love Ezekiel Elliott even though he's not cheap. The Browns can't stop the run and rank 2nd worst in the NFL after the 49ers (man the 49ers stink).
For WR, avoid the top options. Antonio Brown may struggle since his historical numbers against the Ravens are not great and the Ravens have a solid defense. Plus Big Ben may not play which of course hurts. OBJ is an intriguing option but Eli Manning has not been himself with just 8 TDs and 6 INTs for his first 7 games this season. Plus he faces a nasty pass rush in the Eagles who have 22 sacks and an opposing QB rating of 79.1. OBJ might be pissed off again that he is not getting enough targets. You might be fine with cheaper options like Jarvis Landry, Brandin Cooks, Kelvin Benjamin, or Davante Adams. Taking a flier on any Saints and Packers WR should be a good idea.
Top defenses this week should be the usual suspects like Minnesota and Kansas City. Carolina, Miami, and Philadelphia are also viable.