Final Season Comes Down to This
The final week of the regular NFL season is here, and that means that daily fantasy football is going to be heating up as more and more casual football fans start entering teams to get ready for the Playoffs. That can make for a very lucrative situation for more serious DFS fans. As you get ready to draft a roster for your Week #17 fantasy team, be sure to check out our start/sit advice. This week, we’re at FanDuel looking over the best value plays and the most favorable matchups.
Final Picks of the 2018 Regular Season
There are only so many games left this season. Be ready to take on some of the best chances all year.
Running Backs are the Lifeline
Joe Mixon: At first glance, Mixon looks like one of the best possible picks that you can make here. A deeper examination reveals that this might not necessarily be the case. First, his salary of $7,500 is very competitive. He’s averaging 16.2 fantasy points per game and has 1,063 rushing yards this season. He’s only played in 13 out of his 15 available games, but ranks 5th in the NFL, which is very impressive. Drafting Mixon gives you a value of $463 per point, which isn’t bad for a top level RB. The issue with Mixon is his matchup. The Bengals play in Pittsburgh against the Steelers, who have the #9 ranked defense in the NFL, along with the #6 ranked rushing defense. Mixon, despite his great numbers, is going to be marginalized this weekend, making his value much less attractive than what it seems to be at first look.
David Johnson: Johnson came into the season with a lot of fanfare, but has flown under the radar for much of it. This weekend could be his time to shine, though. His price tag of $7,100 and average fantasy contribution of 14.1 fantasy points per game gives him a cost per point of $504 per point, which is a touch more expensive than what you’re getting with Mixon, but the matchup for Johnson is a lot more favorable than this brief look. Johnson and the Cardinals are up against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. The Seahawks have a decent defense, but they are only ranked #20 overall, and #16 against the rush. Although Johnson won’t likely have the best game of his career here, he’s expected to perform slightly above his average benchmark. With him performing slightly better than usual, and Mixon expected to perform noticeably below average, Johnson is now the superior choice.
RB Start: Johnson RB Sit: Mixon
Wide Receivers will Make Big Plays
Mike Williams: Williams is probably not at the top of anyone’s lists when it comes to best Wide Receivers. However, this week, it looks like he could take a leading role as a second tier WR. He has a price tag of $5,700 and is averaging 9.7 points per week, giving him a value of $588 per point. Although this is a bit high, for a WR, it’s quite competitive, especially once you look up at the matchup the Chargers have this weekend. They will be in Denver playing the Broncos, who are ranked #23 defensively in the NFL, and #22 against the passing game. Williams is in a place where he is likely to outperform his standards, helping Los Angeles to have an above average game.
Mohamed Sanu: Sanu is slightly more expensive than Williams at $5,800, with slightly less past return, at 8.8 fantasy points per game. This gives him a cost per point of $659, which is a lot higher than we should ideally be paying for a WR, especially when it comes to a mid-tier player. However, Sanu is in a breakout position this weekend. The Falcons take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, who are ranked just #23 against the pass. Although Sanu has had lower numbers, he could potentially be on the higher side of his fantasy point levels this weekend. The big question that needs to be asked is whether he will outperform Williams, and if so, is he worth drafting? Williams has a higher baseline, and the difference between the two players and their matchups is not enough to offset that higher baseline. While Sanu has more room for improvement than Williams does, the $100 savings and the slightly higher starting point makes Sanu someone that needs to be faded this weekend. This is a close call, but Williams is the right choice from a mathematical point of view.
WR Start: Williams WR Sit: Sanu
Quarterback Throwing Darts
Philip Rivers: Rivers is priced at $8,000 this weekend, making him very approachable. He has an average of 19.2 fantasy points per game and is ranked #8 in the NFL with passing yards and #7 in the NFL with passing touchdowns, at 31 so far this season. The Chargers play the Broncos, who have struggled defensively, and Rivers will have a lot of options open to him concerning how he will play this game. He’s in a position where both the pass and the rush are open to him. Historically, Rivers has relied a lot more on the throwing game, and it looks like if this is the route that he pursues, he should have an above average game.
Jared Goff: Goff is priced very similarly to Rivers at $7,900 and has a slightly higher fantasy point per game number at 19.9. The first reaction could be to draft Goff and skip Rivers. However, Goff and the Rams have struggled against stronger defenses this year from a fantasy point of view. The 49ers don’t have a stellar defense, but they are ranked #12 in the NFL against the pass. This will undoubtedly limit Goff’s efficacy as a fantasy choice. While Rivers is in a position to outperform his usual, Goff is in a place where we expect to see a less than normal outcome. He does have 30 passing TDs this season and is averaging 299.3 yards per game, but Goff is not in the greatest of matchups this weekend. Unfortunately, it looks like he is someone that looks a lot better on paper than he will in this particular game.
QB Start: Rivers QB Sit: Goff