Our hits from last week really hit. As out of control as it was, Josh Allen had 264 passing yards, 92 rushing yards and a receiving TD (27.36 points). Derrick Henry might have ended the Patriots dynasty with 204 total yards and a TD (30.40 points). DK Metcalf went off in his playoff debut to the tune of 7 catches for 160 yards and a TD (32.00).
Carson Wentz’s injury hurt us when it came to Greg Ward as he could only round up three catches for 24 yards (5.7 points). Cole Beasley had a meh day with four catches for 44 yards (8.40 points). Carlos Hyde totaled 53 yards on 16 touches but saved his day with a TD catch (12.30 points).
My confidence in the Saints bit me in the ass. I was pretty certain that they’d start fast, spearheaded by Alvin Kamara, leading to lots of opportunities for their pass rush to get home and additional target opportunities for Irv Smith.
Instead, Kamara got to pay dirt but only totaled 55 yards…that TD and his eight receptions salvaged his day (19.50 points) but still wasn’t the type of performance we needed. The Vikings played from ahead instead of behind…leaving Irv Smith Jr. targetless and the Saints defense impact less (5 points).
The lineup ended up scoring 140.66 points, enough to maybe get you by versus your buddies or in a small tourney but not enough to really cash in. Simply put, the Saints owe us money, but with their playoff heartbreaks over the past few years we’ll let ’em slide this time. On to the divisional round.
QB Patrick Mahomes vs. Houston
Mahomes and company got a week to rest and must be licking their chops looking at this Texans defense. Even with J.J. Watt back in the lineup they have a middling pass rush at best and have given up the 3rd most points per game to the QB position this year. 2019 Mahomes has been very good when healthy but we may get a flashback to the 2018 version in this one. He has arguably the highest ceiling on the slate.
DraftKings salary: 7,500
RB Dalvin Cook @ San Francisco
Cook was incredibly impressive last week versus a Saints run defense that had essentially bottled up every RB on the ground that they’d faced this year, including Christian McCaffery twice. Cook will probably go low owned due to his price and the reputation of the Niners defense, but they’ve quietly given up 100 yards in 12 games this season.
DraftKings salary: 8,000
RB Jamaal Williams vs. Seattle
Williams is slated to return to the lineup and is a good bet for at least 8 to 10 touches against a very soft Seattle run defense that is the leagues 26th ranked run defense DVOA. His backfield mate Aaron Jones will be incredibly popular but Williams’ involvement in the run and pass game makes him an interesting hedge.
DraftKings salary: 4,600
WR Will Fuller @ Kansas City
This one isn’t for the faint of heart. Fuller is a very risky play but when he hits? He HITS! The Chiefs loss of athletic centerfielder Juan Thornhill boosts Fuller’s case and the likelihood that they’ll be playing from behind is a boon to his overall opportunity. IF he can finish the game, he’s probably looking at a 6 to 8 target floor with the potential for more. He’ll turn those into 200 yards and 2 TD’s or 37 yards and 0 scores…no in between.
DraftKings salary: 5,000
WR Deebo Samuel vs. Minnesota
Deebo is one of my favorite plays of the week, regardless of position. He’ll lineup versus Xavier Rhodes most often and Samuel is his stylistic nightmare. Samuel is a twitchy and explosive open field player who Kyle Shanahan unleashes with deadly route combos and schemed touches out of the backfield. I like his chances to hit this week, especially at his price.
DraftKings salary: 5,200
WR Marquise Brown vs. Tennessee
Speaking of twitchy open field players. Hollywood has a great price an opportunity this week. Much has been made about Adoree’ Jackson’s ability to run with Brown but Logan Ryan has played the bulk of the snaps in the slot for the Titans, a spot where Hollywood runs 22% of his routes. Then there’s Tramaine Brock on the other boundary who was released by the corner-needy Cardinals just a month ago. Like Fuller, all it takes is one play for Brown to get lose and hit value.
DraftKings salary: 4,400
TE Travis Kelce vs. Houston
I played Cole Beasley last week in part because the Texans allow an 83% completion rate over the middle of the field, the highest rate in a league. So how could I not play Kelce this week?
DraftKings salary: 6,400
Flex Damien Williams vs. Houston
In an attempt to get every Chiefs touchdown (fingers crossed it’s a lot), I’m rolling with Williams. He’ll be popular for sure but his role as the goal line back, the most trusted pass protector and Andy Reid’s aggressiveness with his backs as downfield receivers makes him pretty difficult to fade.
DraftKings salary: 6,000
Defense Packers vs. Seattle
The Packers are home favorites, have a really good pass rush and have history on their side. Russ Wilson is 0-3 at Lambeau field and his 81-passer rating versus Green Bay in six career matchups is his lowest versus any team. If we were getting #freed play-action-passing Russ I’d probably shy away but Pete Carroll is never here for that so I think we’re safe.
DraftKings salary: 2,800