Week 17 DK Building Blocks
Here we are at the end of the road. At least for the regular season that is. The grind has been real, and I think we learned a fair amount along the way. It’s unfortunate just as we seem to be hitting a stride the season is over. That’s okay though, it’s important to take some of these lessons and apply them to other sports or simply NFL DFS next year. I will say having the NBA starts up at the end as opposed to the middle of the season is quite nice, although I think we sunk far more capital into showdown slates as a result. The Tuesday ones for sure, it was a nice treat on a different day that almost made you feel compelled to play. Week 17 is an absolute shit show every year, and this one is no different. Let’s look at some chalky plays and examine whether we want a piece of the chalk, or how we can move off of it for GPP purposes.
Up top at the Running Back position we have quite a few backs above 10%, but only three above 16%. Those are the ones we are going to focus on
Derrick Henry ($9,400) – 26%
It’s not all that often that you’re going to see a 9k+ running back that has VERY limited use in the passing game garner these types of numbers. Henry is different though. A rare mix of size and speed, this guy is a legit threat to go off for 200 yards and multiple scores every game. We’ve seen it time and time again that for him the ceiling is the roof. (That’s an MJ reference in case you were confused by my comment. Google it.) In a meaningful game against the absolute worst rush defense I’ve seen in years, you’d think it’s a strong lock to play Henry. I know I’m going to have my fair share, probably above this number quite frankly. The thing is that we’ve seen the script that keeps Henry out of the game. A few weeks ago against the Browns and last week against the Packers. In those situations in which the Titans have to play from an extreme deficit one or both of AJ Brown ($ 7,200 10.5%) and Corey Davis ($6,200 8%) become great plays to pair with Ryan Tannehill ($7,000 7%)
Again though, I’m not trying to overthink this one. Have given up 25+ points to RB’s dating back to November 5th, that’s 7 straight weeks. Looking back further 12 of the 15 games they’ve played they’ve done so, only the Jags in week 5 got less than 20 points.
Jonathan Taylor ($7,400) -23%
Another back in a meaningful game against a bad rush defense. Except for Taylor, they’re at home against a team even worse than the Texans that will be missing some of their best offensive weapons. This is a must-win game for the colts, the problem with Taylor of course is that he isn’t the centerpiece of the offense every week quite yet. He is however trending in that direction. In the last 5 games, he’s seen over 20 touches 4 out of 5 times while finding the end zone 5 times on the ground and once through the air. In that time he’s missed out on the 100-yard bonus by 10,9,17, and 26 yards only achieving it once. That is to say, there is room to grow.
The case against Taylor is that he’s still ceding some of the main back role to two other guys. Jordan Wilkins ($4,000) still has been getting 4-5 carries, while Nyheim Hines ($4,900) is out there for 20+ plays getting 6-10 carries and 5 targets on top of that. In the right situation if he gets into the end zone once, or even twice the ceiling game for Taylor is pretty much impossible to achieve. While neither of those backs gets enough work warrant playing them in my opinion they do pose a threat to Taylor’s ceiling and as such does make you think twice before locking him in at his ownership. The fade is the leverage here.
Malcom Brown ($4,300)-18%
I don’t really know where to begin with this one. I do understand the process here. The price tag is appealing and if you’re going to play Henry and maybe even Taylor alongside him you’re going to need to find places that you can save some coin. This percentage obviously assumes that he’ll be the lone back and that both Akers and Henderson won’t play. As I last saw that is the case, but Akers is questionable so we’ll see. The challenge for me is that the Cardinals aren’t a terrible rush defense. They’ve had a few games where they gave up huge numbers, but others in which they stopped the opposing rushing attack in its tracks. The Rams are a dog, at home, and they’re missing 3 of their 4 most important offensive weapons. Goff, Kupp, and Akers. If I’m going cheap at RB I’m more likely to look towards Darrel Williams ($4,800) if Bell is ruled out.
In terms of pass catchers we have another trio of guys above the 15% threshold.
Ty Montgomery ($4,000) – 35%
A late add with the news of Latavius Murray being ruled out due to contact tracing. I’m not sure I want much of that Saints offense without every single weapon. This number seems obnoxious. Furthermore I’d expect Taysom Hill to steal much of the goal line work if there is any.
Davante Adams ($9,200) – 21 %
The price is fine. It’s just a difficult task trying to fit Adams in with Henry as they’re both super high ceiling guys. Adams of course has a clear path to being marginalized in the offense as Aaron Jones ($7,100) is a super talented piece that sometimes becomes the feature. That however has happened few and far between this year. For what it’s worth Adams has paid off this price 8 of 15 times this year and has scored a TD in every game that he’s played in except 3. The path here for him is that if we can get 100 yards and score a touchdown he probably has the additional stats that get him to this price. Jones is the leverage pivot if you’re looking for someone to directly play against Adams, but just avoiding the game and hoping the Bears defense shows up in a divisional matchup at home the second time around is another way of going about it.
Justin Jefferson ($7,600) – 18%
It’s clear that JJ has become the first option in Minnesota. That doesn’t mean however that we won’t see games that Adam Thielen ($7,400) 9.7% doesn’t take over games. Earlier in the year, the two didn’t seem to go off on the same weeks. But without Dalvin Cook to take a large majority of the red zone looks we might see another game where both these guys can be rostered together. It’s obviously good for both guys if the Lions can keep this game close and put up some scores. The more they can stay in it, the more the Vikings will have to go to the Air which could be 10+ targets for both of these guys. The other scenario of course is that the Vikings take a commanding lead and Alexander Mattison ($6,100) 14% takes all the touchdowns for himself.
George Kittle ($6,000) – 17%
Sometimes you just have to take a stand. I went into the season fading George and it helped me win 200k. I’m going to go out the same way. The guy certainly can break a slate, but he can break your lineup as well. I’d much rather go to Richie James ($3,100) 5% on the same team or a guy like Evan Engram ($3,700) 9% at a massive discount before I find my way to paying a premium here.
Dallas @ NYG (+1) O/U 44.5 – The winner might take the Division if WFT can’t beat Hurts and The Eagles.
Vikings @ Lions (-6.5) O/U 53.5 – We could just see a really loose game where both defenses play back a bit and the offenses are opened up.