After the first 18-week season in NFL history, the first 14-team bracket opens with six Wild Card Round games this weekend, bringing us a full slate of options to pick from in Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) contests at DraftKings and FanDuel with big prize pools.
The main slate for Wild Card Weekend includes the three games this Sunday, but there are contests on tap for the two-game Saturday slate, Showdown contests for the Monday night game between the Rams and Cardinals, or a six-game contest including every game on the weekend. We will focus on Sunday plays in this article, while highlighting a few top plays from the other days.
Whether you’re located in a state that won’t allow you to wager on NFL odds or just prefer DFS to traditional sports betting, there are many contests to choose from each and every week of the season. Here, we’ll provide you with lineup advice for a variety of contests including cash games (i.e. 50/50, H2H, and Double-Up) and GPP (Guaranteed Prize Pool) tournaments.
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Wild Card NFL DFS Lineup Picks | Predictions For DraftKings & FanDuel
Whether you play at DraftKings or FanDuel, we want to make the process of choosing your lineup as simple as possible. Below, we have suggestions for several different DFS contest types along with prices for each player from both sites.
Best Play: Dak Prescott (DK: $6,700, FD: $8,800) – Sunday, 4:30 p.m.
The 49ers aren’t giving up much on the ground and the Cowboys have been lighting it up through the air over the past three weeks. Prescott is averaging 283.7 passing YPG with 12 TDs and a 133.1 passer rating over those three games and he’s sporting a sparkling 23:2 TD:INT ratio at home that really is only marred by a rare blip against the Broncos when he came off an injury in Week 9.
Prescott has averaged 7.4 yards per attempt and 264 passing YPG over two playoff starts at home. He averaged 8.4 yards per attempt with five TDs and no picks (123.4 passer rating) over two starts at San Francisco in 2016 and 2017. Over their last three games, 83.3% of TDs against the Niners have come through the air, and the Cowboys have allowed the highest percentage (85.7%) of passing scores in that span, so this game could top the implied total of 50.5 points.
Value Play: Jalen Hurts (DK: $6,100, FD: $7,700) – Sunday 1 p.m.
Even though he’s a second-year QB making his playoff debut against the defending champs, Hurts is a relatively safe play because his rushing ability provides a solid floor. His volume is also reliable against a Bucs defense that faces the highest pass-play rate (66.5%) and most pass attempts per game (40) with teams often playing from behind.
Tampa is shutting down RBs, but allowing the fourth-most rushing yards (399) on the second-most rush attempts (84) to QBs this season. In Week 6, Hurts only passed for 115 yards against the Bucs, but rushed for 44 yards and two TDs in a comeback bid. The Bucs are also expected to be without Richard Sherman and have a slew of key defenders banged up including Jason Pierre-Paul, Shaq Barrett, and Jamel Dean.
GPP Play: Matthew Stafford (DK: $6,300, FD: $7,600) – Monday, 8:15 p.m.
Stafford has struggled with ball security during the second half of his first season with the Rams and his price tag is a bit depressed as a result. Yet he’s an optimal GPP play to consider in the full weekend slate and a must-play in Monday Night Showdown contests.
The Cardinals are giving up 28.4 PPG over their last five contests and 80% of TDs scored against Arizona have come through the air in that span. Stafford averages 293.6 passing YPG with a 21:6 TD:INT ratio at home this season and owns a 10:1 TD:INT ratio with a 112.1 passer rating while averaging 305.5 passing YPG over his last four meetings with Arizona.
Fade: Josh Allen (DK: $7,800, FD: $8,800) – Saturday, 8:15 p.m.
As good as Allen has been over his last three starts, which includes a dismantling of the Patriots in Foxborough, he’s not tough enough to thrive in sub-zero temperatures with a bone-chilling wind expected in Buffalo this Saturday night.
The implied total sits at 44 points with the Bills and Pats set to meet for the third time in a five-week span and Bill Belichick’s defense will have a lot to prove after their poor showing in Week 16 against Allen. The Pats are holding opposing QBs to a 9:14 TD:INT ratio and 61.4 passer rating on the road this season.
Best Play: Najee Harris (DK: $6,600, FD: $8,000) – Sunday, 8:15 p.m.
Even in a blowout loss at KC three weeks ago, Harris tallied 24 touches for 110 scrimmage yards. The Steelers (+12.5) are highly unlikely to win on Sunday night, but they should be far more competitive, and Harris has almost no competition for touches. He’s averaging 4.8 targets per game with 30 catches over his last eight appearances.
The Chiefs have yielded the third-most receiving yards (887) and fourth-most receptions (109) to RBs this season, so Harris is a great play in PPR formats with his team likely to play from behind.
Value Play: Leonard Fournette (DK: $5,900, FD: $7,300) – Sunday 1 p.m.
Injury concerns seem to be driving Fournette’s price tag down as he comes off I.R. in time for this playoff game. Yet with Ronald Jones (ankle) doubtful and the Bucs receiving corps decimated, Fournette stands to see heavy usage in a pass-heavy game plan.
Fournette is averaging the third-most receptions (4.9) and fourth-most receiving YPG (32.4) among RBs and he’s logged the third-most red zone touches (54) at his position. We all remember “Playoff Lenny” emerging as a stud during Tampa’s Super Bowl run last year and he’ll look to rekindle that magic against an Eagles team that coughed up 171 rushing yards in their season finale.
GPP Play: Damien Harris (DK: $6,800, FD: $7,500) – Saturday, 8:15 p.m.
As mentioned above, the forecast calls for sub-zero temperatures and steady winds in Buffalo this Saturday, which will force the run-heavy Patriots to keep it grounded once again. Rhamondre Stevenson ($4,700; $5,200) is a solid value as the 1B RB in New England’s offense, but Harris has been a goal-line workhorse with a whopping 13 red zone touches over his last three appearances.
Buffalo is nearly impossible to beat deep but coughs up 116.7 rushing YPG at 4.3 YPC in home games this season. The Pats rolled the Bills for 244 rushing yards on another nasty night in Week 13 and Harris tallied 111 yards on 10 carries despite battling through a hamstring issue that sidelined him for two weeks afterward.
Fade: Josh Jacobs (DK: $6,500, FD: $7,200) – Saturday, 4:30 p.m.
The Bengals have sold out to stop the run all season and shouldn’t change their approach on Saturday with snow expected in Cincinnati. The Raiders don’t have much to threaten teams with downfield as Derek Carr is averaging 6.5 yards per attempt with a 6:5 TD:INT ratio over his last six starts.
Jacobs is coming off a clutch game against a Chargers team that has ranked dead last in DVOA rush defense all year. But he’s only averaging 46.5 rushing YPG at a 3.5 YPC clip with one TD over his last three road games. The Bengals pasted the Raiders, 32-13, in Week 10, which led to Jacobs logging only nine carries.
Best Play: Tyreek Hill (DK: $7,100, FD: $8,000) – Sunday, 8:15 p.m.
Getting the most explosive receiver on the main slate at a lowered price tag is quite fortunate for those looking to maximize upside. The Steelers have been far worse in run defense than they have against the pass, but the Chiefs stuck to their pass-heavy ways in a Week 16 shredding off Pittsburgh’s diminished defense.
Hill was fresh off the COVID List and hardly made an impact in that game, as Patrick Mahomes completed 23 of 30 passes for 258 yards and three TDs in a cakewalk. Mahomes owns a sparkling 17:2 TD:INT ratio over seven home playoff games and his most obvious stacking partner is Hill.
Value Play: Amari Cooper (DK: $5,900, FD: $7,100) – Sunday, 4:30 p.m.
The Cowboys have adjusted to becoming a pass-heavy offense with a 59.7% pass-play rate over their last three games. Cedrick Wilson and CeeDee Lamb have become key members of their usual three-wide sets, but Cooper is the veteran to trust in a playoff game. His 20% target share in the red zone dwarfs Lamb’s (11.1%) and he’s been fed 25 targets over three games since going on local radio and asserting his ability to come up clutch on third down and in the red zone.
GPP Play: Tyler Johnson (DK: $3,800, FD: $5,100) – Sunday 1 p.m.
Mike Evans (hamstring) is the only WR of the Bucs big trio left standing and he’s hobbled. Tyler Johnson has joined Evans in two-wide sets with Breshad Perriman, Scotty Miller, and Jaelon Darden rotating behind him. Cyril Grayson (hamstring) is doubtful for Sunday and Johnson played on 84% of snaps in Week 18.
He’s logged 207 snaps over his last four games and drew 20 targets in three of those contests while getting zero targets in the one game Antonio Brown dominated looks. Now Tom Brady will work with Johnson out of necessity.
Fade: Mike Evans (DK: $6,900, FD: $8,200) – Sunday 1 p.m.
While we would mix in some cheaper wideouts against the Eagles, it’s tough to bank on Evans meeting value in a tough matchup while battling his ailing hamstring in addition to elite CB Darius Slay. With Slay added to the fold, the Eagles have allowed the third-fewest receiving yards (2,222) and fourth-fewest receptions (186) to WRs this season.
Evans hasn’t drawn double-digit targets in the Bucs’ pass-heavy offense since Week 10. He’s been used as a boom-bust deep threat most of the year and might not be a bust if he can’t find the end zone.
Best Play: Rob Gronkowski (DK: $6,400, FD: $7,400) – Sunday 1 p.m.
Since the Eagles are so weak against TEs by the numbers, it may make sense to steer away from Gronkowski in GPP formats, with the public sure to chase his postseason greatness in a fantastic matchup. The Eagles have allowed the most receptions (107) and receiving TDs (14) to TEs this season and Gronk has caught the second-most TDs (14) in postseason history.
Gronk has averaged 8.5 targets per game since coming back from injury eight games ago and he is now the primary target on a team that passes at the highest rate (66.2%) in the NFL by far.
Value Play: Pat Freiermuth (DK: $4,200, FD: $5,400) – Sunday 8:15 p.m.
Freiermuth has become a huge part of the Steelers’ offense during the second half of the season and might have become Ben Roethlisberger’s favorite target in the red zone with 17 looks inside the 20-yard line since Week 8. The Steelers are expected to be playing from behind against a Chiefs defense that yields 4.95 catches per game to TEs this season and 253.7 passing YPG over their last three games.
GPP Play: George Kittle (DK: $6,000, FD: $6,500) – Sunday 4:30 p.m.
Kittle has gone three straight games without a TD and his ownership rate should be down in a game with shootout potential. Yet Deebo Samuel ($8,100; $8,000) is going to draw a ton of attention after his torrid run this season and the Cowboys have been a bit more vulnerable against TEs with Travon Diggs leading their rising secondary.
Jimmy Garoppolo is battling a thumb injury that may force Kyle Shanahan to get creative with his play calls and that should get Kittle in space with the ability to use his YAC ability to rip off big gains.
Fade: Dalton Schultz (DK: $5,000, FD: $6,200) – Sunday 4:30 p.m.
San Francisco LB Fred Warner is a great leader and an elite coverage man who has helped the 49ers contain TEs over the past few seasons. This year they’ve allowed the second-fewest yards (582) and fifth-fewest receptions (65) to opposing TEs and they rank fifth in Weighted DVOA defense overall. Blake Jarwin recently returned from injury and Jeremy Sprinkle has logged a 24.5% snap rate over the last three weeks to give OC Kellen Moore a few more TE options to deploy in the red zone.
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