NFL DFS: Cash Game Plays for Week 12

NFL DFS: Cash Game Plays for Week 12

by November 29, 2020 2 comments

The main slate state has changed throughout the week as it normally does, but this is like no other I’ve ever seen. Better value options have since replaced value options that we thought were solid options due to more injuries and positive COVID-19 tests. As of writing this, the game between the Denver Broncos and New Orleans Saints is still a go. The Broncos are down all of their quarterbacks and are expected to start practice squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton at the position. The Ravens-Steelers game has been pushed back to Tuesday. So many things have changed rapidly, so keep your Adam Schefter Tweet notifications on! With that said, let’s dive in and take a look at some Cash Game Plays for Week 12. 

The cash game article’s goal is to outline some safe plays while also providing options that will help you create the most optimal builds. The whole point is for us to make some money.

Sometimes we won’t, but putting ourselves in the best position to do so is the most important part. That should go without saying but can sometimes get overshadowed by the results on a week to week basis. Cash Games are basically H2Hs, 50/50s, and Double-Ups. The amount of winnings might be limited but have a higher probability of hitting.

Everyone wants to know how many points a guy scored and not necessarily the route that took them there. DFS is not only a science but a math equation. Let’s dive in, put the pieces together, and try to solve it. Here are the NFL DFS Cash Game Plays for Week 12.

As always, there will be a lock emoji next to a few of my favorite options. All of the guys mentioned are viable for cash games, but the ones with that lock emoji will be fixtures in my main lineup.

Quarterback

Justin Herbert ($7,200 DK, $8,400 FD)

The Bills are allowing the fifth-most DK points per game to opposing quarterbacks (22.8). Herbert has been lighting things up in his rookie season. He’s averaging 38.9 passing attempts, nearly 300 yards, and 2.4 touchdowns per game on the year. The Buffalo Bills can put up points and give them up. Each of their last two games has gone over 62 total points, and this is currently the third-highest points total on the slate at 52.5. Why bet against the rookie and his consistency this season?

Ryan Fitzpatrick ($5,500 DK, $7,400 FD)

I had a lot less interest in the Miami Dolphins’ passing attack with Tua Tagovailoa under center. Now that he’s listed as doubtful, Fitzmagic becomes a true Cash Game Option at the position. The New York Jets have struggled mightily in their efforts to stop opposing passing games. They are averaging 288.3 passing yards allowed per game and 355.7 in their last three games on the season. Those numbers hold true in the pass DVOA court as well. They rank dead last in that department—Play Fitzpatrick as a solid value option.   

Other Options: Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, Derek Carr

Running Back

Dalvin Cook ($9,500 DK, $11,000 FD) – 🔒

Cook finds himself in a smash spot yet again. This time, he faces the fantasy-friendly Carolina Panthers in a home matchup. The Panthers are allowing the fifth-most DK points per game to opposing running backs (27.8). The Panthers are also 22nd in rush DVOA (-4.02 percent), which really should be worse had it not been for last week, where the Detroit Lions ran for only 40 yards with an 80-year old and a running back with a brace on his leg. If you don’t want to pay his hefty salary on FanDuel, that’s perfectly understandable, and it may not be a necessity if you can group some safe mid-range options together. I’m locking him in on DraftKings.

James Robinson ($6,300 DK, $7,400 FD)

Robinson’s usage is ridiculously good. It’s hard to understand how a running back that’s top-five in all-purpose yards, and touches per game can continually get the shaft when it comes to his DFS pricing. Robinson is averaging 18.4 DK points per game and is now the cheapest he’s been since Week 3 on DraftKings. Jacksonville will be starting longtime journeyman Mike Glennon at quarterback, which might not be the best thing for the offense as a whole, but it leads me to believe they will lean even heavier on their feature back. 

Austin Ekeler ($6,100 DK, $6,500 FD)

“But, he’s coming off an injury.” Do you honestly believe the 3-7 Los Angeles Chargers would sacrifice their stud running back in a meaningless Week 12 matchup if he wasn’t fully healthy? Ekeler posted workout videos and claimed he tried to do all he could to test the hamstring to see if he could reinjure it. He couldn’t. Therefore, the Chargers activated him. Meanwhile, Kalen Ballage isn’t expected to play because of calf and ankle injuries. This is a very soft landing, so to speak, for his first game back. The Buffalo Bills are bottom-five in the NFL in rushing yards allowed per attempt (4.8) and dead last over their last three games (5.4). Ekeler averaged 5.1 yards per carry before getting hurt. Fire him up with confidence. 

Nyheim Hines ($4,600 DK, $5,700 FD) – 🔒

This is more of a DraftKings or PPR option than anything else. Unfortunately, Jonathan Taylor was placed on the reserve/Covid-19 list and will not play this week. Fortunately for us, that narrows down the mixed bag that is the Indianapolis Colts backfield, as far as volume distribution goes. Hines took a backseat to Taylor last week, as the rookie went off for 114 all-purpose yards against the Green Bay Packers. However, it was only two weeks ago when Hines touched the ball 17 times, gaining 70 yards on the ground and 45 through the air on his way to a two-touchdown game against the same team he’ll face this week, the Tennessee Titans. Without JT, Hines could get around the same amount of volume this week, if not more. Lock him in on DraftKings unless any other value options pop up.  

Other Options: Kareem Hunt, Wayne Gallman, Josh Jacobs (FanDuel)

Wide Receiver

Stefon Diggs ($7,600 DK, $7,900 FD) – 🔒

Diggs has been as consistent as they come, soaking up 28.5 percent of Buffalo’s team targets share while racking up 20 DK points per game on the year. The Chargers have activated Chris Harris Jr. from injured reserve, where he’s been since Week 3. However, Harris Jr. predominantly lines up in the slot, so that’s a matchup issue for Cole Beasley and not Diggs. Cornerback Casey Hayward has been ruled out, so Diggs won’t have to deal with him and his 46.7 percent completion rate allowed. This game projects to be fast-paced and high-scoring, so I want some exposure to both sides. Diggs gives us that. If you want a salary saver, Gabriel Davis is a fine option as well. 

Calvin Ridley ($7,100 DK, $8,100 FD) – (🔒 – if Julio sits)

This is more of an ‘if and then’ Cash Game option. If Julio Jones sits, Ridley becomes extremely intriguing with the increased volume he should receive. In games that Ridley has been targeted 10 or more times this season, he is averaging over 121 yards receiving and a touchdown. If Julio sits, he should get 10 or more targets. The matchup is juicy as well. The Las Vegas Raiders are allowing the sixth-most DK points per game. Matt Ryan is also pretty good when he doesn’t get mauled like he did last week when he was sacked eight times by the New Orleans Saints. The Raiders have the second-worst sack percentage (2.8 percent) and have only four total sacks in their last five games. If he has time to throw, he should be able to find Ridley quite a few times. If Jones suits up, Ridley isn’t as intriguing but remains in play, especially in GPPs. 

Justin Jefferson ($6,300 DK, $7,000 FD)

It looks like it’s going to be a full-on Minnesota offense kind of DFS week. Right off the bat, I feel like I need to mention that I do have some concerns about whether or not Jefferson will be as much of a smash play as he looks on paper. Not because he’s not a very talented receiver in a great spot, but we’ve never seen how he performs at the NFL level as the number one receiving option. That’s what he’ll be this week without Adam Thielen playing. Does the defense double team Jefferson? Nonetheless, the kid is a rising star and has plenty of upside. We can pencil him in for close to 10 targets, and that’s enough to make him a great Cash Game play in this matchup against the lowly Carolina Panthers’ defense. 

Laviska Shenault ($3,300 DK, $5,000 FD)

Mike Glennon isn’t exactly a quarterback we can trust, but Shenault’s cheap price tag is. DJ Chark and Chris Conley are both out. Before getting hurt himself, from Weeks 3-6, Shenault averaged 6.8 targets per game. With a lack of options to throw the ball to, Glennon will have to use the talented young rookie wideout. This is the cheapest he’s been all year, by almost $1,000. You could do much worse than Shenault, especially in a matchup against the Cleveland Browns, who rank in the bottom third of the league in passing touchdowns allowed per game. 

Other Options: Keenan Allen, Corey Davis, Keelan Cole, Gabriel Davis, Denzel Mims

Tight End

Darren Waller ($6,000 DK, $7,100 FD)

The Walrus is back on the main slate, and he’s back to being a discounted version of Travis Kelce. At $1,000 cheaper, Waller provides a steady floor with a 20-plus point fantasy ceiling, a rare combination in this day and age at the tight end position. The Atlanta Falcons allow the most DK points per game to tight ends. If you’re spending up, he’s the guy.  

Kyle Rudolph ($2,800 DK, $4,600 FD)

As we are getting into the holiday season, it’s only right we mention a Rudolph. Irv Smith Jr. has been ruled out with groin and back injuries. Adam Thielen is also expected to be out. That leaves plenty of opportunities to be had in the Vikings’ passing game. Rudolph has always been a big body red zone threat. With Justin Jefferson running many deep patterns and drawing the defense’s attention, maybe that opens the door for more underneath looks to Rudolph from quarterback Kirk Cousins. He won’t need to do much at this salary. If you’re spending down at the position, this is a great option. 

Other Options: Travis Kelce, Evan Engram, Hunter Henry, Hayden Hurst

Defense/Special Teams

New York Jets ($2,100 DK, $3,000 FD)

Coming in as the cheapest defense on FanDuel and the second-cheapest on DraftKings, it doesn’t take much for me to land on the Jets this week as a potential option. Although I like Fitzpatrick in Cash Games at the quarterback spot, he’s good for an interception or two per game. 

Other Options: Minnesota Vikings, Cleveland Browns, New York Giants, Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints

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