NFL DFS: Divisional Sunday Locks and Alternativesby Joe Ricotta January 23, 2022 0 comments
We saw both road underdog teams win and move on in yesterday’s close games. Are we in store for another wild one today? In the first game starting at 3:00 PM EST, the Los Angeles Rams will take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. That winner will take on the San Francisco 49ers in next week’s NFC Championship game. Then, at 6:30 PM EST, the Buffalo Bills visit the Kansas City Chiefs to decide who will face the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship next week.
Of course, season-long fantasy football ended a few weeks ago, but we still have DFS. We still have ample opportunities to make some money. Given that it’s such a short slate with fewer options than usual, getting each player right becomes even more critical. There will be a ton of overlap in ownership, given the lack of options. That’s why getting the locks right and straying away to take a lower-owned player in tournaments becomes vital. With that said, let’s make some money.
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RB – Devin Singletary ($5,900 DK, $7,200 FD)
We don’t have an exceptional group of running backs to choose from on this short two-game slate. Talent-wise, Cam Akers is probably the best option. However, he’s still getting worked back into the offense and back into game action. He looked great last week against the Arizona Cardinals, especially on the 40-yard catch and run. How much work will he get, though? Surprisingly, he received 17 carries in that game but only played 53 percent of snaps. On FanDuel, his price makes too much sense to avoid.
Nonetheless, Singletary is one of the best options, and he isn’t that high in salary. Brian Daboll has been using the running game much more over the last few weeks. Singletary has been the biggest beneficiary. In the previous five games, Singletary averages 18.4 carries and 80.8 rushing yards per game. Furthermore, he’s scored at least one touchdown in each of those games. Kansas City ranks 20th in DVOA against the run. To keep Mahomes off the field, I’m expecting them to use Singletary quite a bit.
WR – Tyreek Hill ($6,600 DK, $8,200 FD)
In Week 5, Hill was targeted 13 times when these two teams faced each other and caught seven passes for 63 yards. I expect the game plan to be slightly different this time, given the Chiefs lost that game 38-20. However, I think the Bills will win and should have success offensively, leading to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs’ offense chasing points and taking deep shots.
Hill is an absolute burner and can turn short gains into 75-yard touchdowns just off his speed alone. Travis Kelce is the only other Chiefs receiver I’ll have in lineups this week. As inconsistent as he’s been this year, we know how much potential he has to pop off. Also, he remained a top ten wide receiver by the numbers. He was seventh in targets and receiving yards and third in receptions. I’ll take a shot with Hill in this spot.
Another Lock: Leonard Fournette
WR – Odell Beckham ($5,300 DK, $6,500 FD)
Since joining the Rams, OBJ has led the team in endzone targets and targets on third downs. He hasn’t put up gaudy numbers, but he did catch all four of his targets for 54 yards and a touchdown last week. I’m not sure how much success the Bucs defense will have stopping Cooper Kupp, but OBJ is a lot cheaper in price and could go overlooked if they key in on Kupp. I like where his ownership sits, as it looks to be less than 20 percent on each site.
TE – Rob Gronkowski ($5,800 DK, $7,100 FD)
Many DFS players will either spend down for Tyler Higbee or spend all the way up for Kelce. That’s not a horrible strategy, but playing Gronk could differentiate you because he’s sandwiched between them in terms of pricing. Since the Antonio Brown incident, Gronk has gone over 100 yards receiving or caught a touchdown pass in each game.
Last week, Mike Evans had the big game, going for nine catches, 117 receiving yards, and a touchdown. He also destroyed the Rams earlier in the season, racking up eight catches for 106 yards. The Rams allowed the 11th-most catches to tight ends this season. Since I’m already rostering OBJ for the Rams and Hill for the Chiefs, I’m going to roster Gronk over Evans in hopes of spreading out the production and taking advantage of recency bias.
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