The Final 2019 NFL Draft Mock: Round 6

The Fanalysts have been grinding draft tape, monitoring team needs, and mock drafting since December. This 7-part mock-draft is one continuous mock draft and the final one of the season for us. We will be releasing one article per day in the week leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft.

This is a summary of the 6th Round of our mock draft for the 2019 NFL Draft. Over the course of the next 6 days we will release one round, working backwards, until all 254 of our selections are revealed prior to the 2019 NFL Draft.

You can find the 7th round article HERE

For more on the fantasy football values of the 2019 Draft Class, check out the 48 Report: our 2019 Rookie Database

Pick Team Player
174 Arizona Cardinals Trysten Hill, DT, UCF
175 Pittsburgh Steelers Andrew Wingard, S, Wyoming
176 San Francisco 49ers Sutton Smith, EDGE, Northern Illinois
177 New Orleans Saints Tim Harris, CB, Virginia
178 Jacksonville Jaguars Tyler Jones, OT, NC State
179 Arizona Cardinals Evan Worthington, S, Colorado
180 New York Giants Caleb Wilson, TE, UCLA

The sixth round has a lot of developmental prospects that have promising traits.  Most of these players will not see the field right away but have potential to become starters with proper coaching and development.

Caleb Wilson is a prime example of a developmental prospect with promising traits.  The 6’4” 240 lbs. tight end demonstrated his impressive speed by running a 4.56 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine.  With this speed, Wilson can be effective in the middle of the field, similar to Evan Engram.  However, that’s really all Wilson has going for him at this point.  If Wilson wants to see a significant role in the NFL, he will have to get stronger, improve his blocking and develop as a route runner.

Pick Team Player
181 Buffalo Bills Germaine Pratt, iLB, NC State
182 Denver Broncos Kendall Sheffield, CB, Ohio State
183 Cincinnati Bengals Montre Hartage, CB, Northwestern
184 Detroit Lions David Sills V, WR, West Virginia
185 Green Bay Packers Alex Bars, iOL, Notre Dame
186 Atlanta Falcons Blace Brown, CB, Troy
187 Carolina Panthers Keaton Sutherland, iOL, Texas A&M
188 Miami Dolphins Nate Herbig, iOL, Stanford
189 Cleveland Browns Terrone Prescod, iOL, NC State
190 Minnesota Vikings Benny Snell, RB, Kentucky

I am extremely excited for David Sills V to continue developing as a wide receiver.  The former quarterback shows a great ability to get down the field and getting up to catch the ball.  He definitely still needs development in his short route running and consistent hands, but Sills shows a ton of promise as a potential X-receiver.

In the sixth round, you usually don’t find running backs that have legit 3-down potential.  However, with his size and pass protection ability, Benny Snell could have the opportunity to play on all 3 downs if drafted to the right opportunity.  Snell doesn’t have the long speed and needs to develop as a receiver but has the vision and balance to be a solid producer in the NFL.

Pick Team Player
191 Baltimore Ravens Keelan Doss, WR, UC-Davis
192 Pittsburgh Steelers Khalil Hodge, LB, Buffalo
193 Baltimore Ravens Kerrith Whyte, RB, FAU
194 Green Bay Packers Foster Moreau, TE, LSU
195 Houston Texans Sean Bunting, CB, Central Michigan
196 New York Jets Alize Mack, TE, Notre Dame
197 Philadelphia Eagles Preston Williams, WR, Colorado State

Alize Mack has been gaining some hype throughout the pre-draft process.  Mack faced several obstacles in his first few seasons at Notre Dame, including sitting out his sophomore season (academics) and battling injuries his junior season. Mack did start producing his senior year and showed some great potential.  If he can develop his route running and continue being a nice, big target, Mack could have potential to be a consistent starter in the NFL

Preston Williams is the definition of a high ceiling, low floor prospect.  Williams is a great athlete but lacks polish as an overall receiver.  If he can develop his route running and learn to combat press coverage, Williams has the athletic upside to be a great playmaker at the next level.

Pick Team Player
198 Cincinnati Bengals Scott Miller, WR, Bowling Green State
199 Indianapolis Colts Dontavius Russell, iDL, Auburn
200 Los Angeles Chargers TJ, Edwards, LB, Wisconsin
201 Kansas City Chiefs JoJo McIntosh, S, Washington
202 New Orleans Saints Zach Gentry, TE, Michigan
203 Los Angeles Rams Chase Hansen, LB, Utah
204 Detroit Lions Tyler Roemer, OT, San Diego State
205 New England Patriots Kevin Wilkins, iDL, Rutgers
206 Washington Redskins Tommy Sweeney, TE, Boston College

When it comes to fantasy football, I’ve never understood the hype for Tommy Sweeney.  Yes, Sweeney will be a solid run blocker in the NFL, which will help him get on the field.  But even if Sweeney is on the field, he lacks athleticism and variety in his route tree to be any sort of consistent fantasy producer.

Pick Team Player
207 Pittsburgh Steelers Emmanuel Butler, WR, NAU
208 Tampa Bay Buccaneers D’Cota Dixon, S, Wisconsin
209 Minnesota Vikings Gary Jennings, WR, West Virginia
210 Cincinnati Bengals Armon Watts, iDL, Arkansas
211 Cincinnati Bengals Will Harris, S, Boston College
212 San Francisco 49ers Jordan Wyatt, CB, SMU
213 Cincinnati Bengals Deshaun Davis, LB, Auburn
214 Kansas City Chiefs Javon Patterson, iOL, Mississippi

Gary Jennings will be one of those players that should always manage to find a roster spot in the NFL.  He is a versatile player that can fill multiple roles.  Jennings showed that he can be productive as the primary deep threat for West Virginia.  I’m not sure Jennings will be anything more than a team’s WR 3, but if he gets the opportunity, Jennings has the tools to produce.

DFS in Review: Perfect DraftKings Lineup Wide Reciever Trends

Part 3 of the series reviews a wide receiver position that rebounded from a real life and fantasy perspective from 2017.  As a whole, wide receiver receptions, yards, and touchdowns saw sizable increases in 2018.  Also notable, wide receiver rushing attempts and rushing yards had substantial bumps from the prior year.

As you will discover from this piece, the position can be a roller coaster to evaluate each week.  44 different receivers made the perfect lineup out of a possible 55 occurrences.  Compared to the running back and tight end positions that saw 62% and 64% of its respective slots represented by different players, 80% for wide receivers shouldn’t be too surprising.  Especially when you consider there are at least two reliable receivers on most teams vs a single bell cow back or tight end that is heavily relied upon.

Some of these receiver trends aren’t as concrete as those that were presented in the previous two articles of the series regarding the quarterback and running back positions.  The wide receiver position displays more variables that show the fickle nature of the position.  At times, these variables can make it feel rather unpredictable as the trend below and others discussed in this article will illustrate.

free_3_250x250-1

DRAFT is a fun, non-intimidating way to play DFS year round! They have 2019 Best Balls running already as well as daily NBA contests. Get a free entry by using promo code ‘Top2″ with your first deposit.

THE PERFECT WIDE RECEIVERS COMBINED FOR A RECORD OF 29-24-2

Tyreek Hill was the WR1 in Week 10 in a win that he did nearly all of his damage when the game was still within reach for the Cardinals.  In opposite fashion, Taylor Gabriel caught two touchdown passes in what already a rout against the Buccaneers.  Remaining cognizant to how coaches and coordinators approach and utilize their passing games in positive gamescript can be critical when a game gets out of hand.  Some may like to keep the foot on the gas while others may be content running the ball and draining clock. 

Negative gamescript can move one from six DK points and WR63 for the week and boost him all the way up to 23 DK points and WR8 on a deep throw in hopes of a late rally.  Of the 50 perfect receivers that did score a touchdown in their respective games, 30 of them did so when their team was trailing.  This isn’t breaking news but sometimes, a reminder of the obvious can be a cure for the overthinking that is possible on a week-to-week basis.  In this case, rostering receivers that are expected to be in a close game or playing from behind.

Defenses that possess a strong competency in stopping the run may be more targeted via the wide receiver.  Take the Saints as they surrendered the fourth fewest FPA to running backs but hemorrhaged the most fantasy points per game to opposing receivers.  These stout rushing defenses can funnel additional passing attempts and create more opportunity for damage through the air, especially when the secondary is a porous one.  The Saints allowed four perfect receivers with their inability to contain the position.

As evidenced, a lot goes into deciding which receiver to choose.  Where the perfect running backs show a positive correlation towards winning their respective games, it’s nearly a 50/50 proposition with their wide receiving counterparts.  Of course, none of this matters if there isn’t opportunity to make a difference on the field.

THE AVERAGE NUMBER OF RECEPTIONS PER GAME FOR THE WIDE RECEIVERS WAS 7.96 

Targets are fantasy gold that create opportunities for wide receivers to produce.  Without them, that receiver serves no purpose in lineups, especially when running backs are seeing increased touches and roles in the offense.  With the limited amount of opportunities they have each week, it is critical for receivers to capitalize on those balls thrown to them.  

For those that achieved perfection, the average number of receptions per game was 7.96 off 10.23 targets.  Michael Thomas saw a perfect lineup ceiling of 16 receptions in Week 1 while Tyrell Williams needed as few as three of them to do his damage.  Of course, Tyrell needed more than three receptions for 118 yards to get on that list by scoring two touchdowns on the day.  It’s no surprise that 50 of the 55 wide receivers on the list posted at least one touchdown. 

35 OF THE 55 WIDE RECEIVERS WERE PRICED AT $6000 OR LOWER

Considering 21 of the 34 perfect running backs, not including flex options, we’re priced over $7000, inexpensive wide receivers needed to be rostered and were available each week.  In fact, at least one perfect wide receiver was priced as low as $5000 in all but one main slate in 2018; Week 2 was the only week that featured all receivers over $6000.  

Needless to say, a wide receiver under $6000 won’t land a team’s #1 option in most cases.  However, a team’s second or third made the perfect lineup in 15 of 17 weeks as 44 different receivers made the list.  Targeting susceptible cornerbacks comes into play in identifying those cheap receivers that have favorable matchups.  P.J. Williams, M.J. Stewart, and Jalen Mills were just some of the corners that were weekly targets in the 2018 DFS landscape.  One secondary fell victim to more perfect receivers than the other 31 teams and resides in a division with strong quarterbacks and receiving corps.

CAROLINA ALLOWED SEVEN PERFECT WIDE RECEIVERS

In one corner sits Matt Ryan with his lethal perimeter receivers in Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley.  In another contains the surgical duo of Drew Brees and Michael Thomas.  Don’t forget about Jameis Winston and his trio of talented receivers in Mike Evans, Adam Humphries, and Chris Godwin; it remains to be seen if DeSean Jackson returns in 2019.  That’s a tall order of firepower for any secondary to endure in 6 of 16 games.  

The damage inflicted upon a Panther secondary that was in the top 5 in FPA to perimeter receivers wasn’t just limited to divisional foes.  Kenny Golladay got the best of them at one point as well as a pair of Seattle receivers in David Moore and Tyler Lockett that both posted 100+ receiving yard games en route to the perfect lineup.  Odell Beckham Jr. threw a touchdown pass on top of the carnage he created opposite James Bradberry and Donte Jackson.

Carolina’s 2019 schedule outside of divisional play features some tough perimeter receiver matchups to include Davante Adams, T.Y. Hilton, DeAndre Hopkins, the Rams duo of Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods, and the aforementioned Tyler Lockett.  For what has been an Achilles heel for this defense the last two years, the Panthers need Jackson to continue to develop as he enters his second year in the league and Bradberry to shut down opposing receivers not just named Mike Evans.

CONCLUSION

DeAndre Hopkins and Antonio Brown were the only two receivers to eclipse 300 fantasy points in PPR scoring in 2017, the fewest receivers to hit that benchmark since 2012 when Calvin Johnson and Brandon Marshall were the only two to do so.  In 2018, five other receivers joined Brown and Hopkins in this club, reiterating the aerial revolution that is sweeping the NFL.

As long as this pass-first mentality continues, the state of the wide receiver shouldn’t bottom out as it did in 2017 and maintain its current upward trend.  Even with the running backs more involved in the passing game, the current household names at the receiver along with the ascension of some younger stars projects a bright outlook for the position for the next few years.

Tyree Jackson: a Spicy 3 Star Prospect that Needs Seasoning

Welcome to the 48 Report, a full working database including 48 of our favorite 2019 Draft Prospects. The key, however, is that we focus specifically on their ability to translate as fantasy football players. All players in the database have been/will be scored by 3 writers, and this is their article; explaining their aggregate score, as well as the score of their writer.

All categories are scored on a 1-5 scale; with 5 being the highest score a prospect can receive. The highest aggregate average scores a player can receive is 25. Articles will be posted January-April, all the way up to the draft. Ratings will be adjusted after the combine, based on measurables and after the draft, because as we all know: landing spot matters.

Tyree Jackson (6’7”, 245) Quarterback, Buffalo

16 Aggregate Score (3 Star Prospect)

My score was the highest on Tyree (17) and it’s because I became smitten with his game, measurables and potential. When I see Tyree and his size, it’s hard not to think about Big Ben. It’s kind of funny too because he plays in the MAC just like Ben did and he has two really good receivers reminiscent of Antonio Brown and Juju.

I heard of the hype train on this kid during the season, but now that I’ve had time to break down his tape, I’m starting to understand.

College Production

Before his knee injury, Tyree had his best season as a rusher as a redshirt freshman with 99 attempts for 399 yards in 9 starts. After the injury in his sophomore year, he rushed a lot less because of the hesitancy that comes with any knee injury, but began getting comfortable again in his junior season along with becoming a better passer.

He had his best season as a passer in his junior season where he was 28th in passing yards, throwing for 3,131 yards. Even still, his production doesn’t make up for his exciting play when you actually see him on film.

Arm Strength: Aggregate Score: 4.3 (Personal Score: 5)

I was the highest rater of his arm strength because, the way he launches it is just ridiculous. There’s so much power and velocity on it, I don’t see how receivers actually manage to catch these throws.

Accuracy: Aggregate Score: 2.6 (Personal Score: 3)

It’s not good and it’s not bad either, so that’s why I rated him middle of the road when it came to landing it on target. Some plays it looked like a professional back there dropping dimes left and right. Other times it was not fun to watch how off the mark he was capable of being.

Decision Making: Aggregate Score: 2 (Personal Score: 2)

This metric is the basis for the previous two. This is part of the reason why I think his potential is high. I think he has the accuracy and arm strength to be really good. It’s his decision making that gets him into trouble.

Instead of putting touch on the ball in short yardage situations, he mostly threw it too hard. In times where he needed to use touch, he overthrew it. I didn’t see him under throw it which is good, it means he isn’t inconsistent he just needs to have a regulator coached into that rocket arm.

Athleticism: Aggregate Score: 3.6 (Personal Score: 3)

I may come higher on this score, it just doesn’t seem like he has above average athleticism. It could be a case of him not really trusting his legs fully yet, so we’ll see.

Mechanics: Aggregate Score: 3.3 (Personal Score: 4)

This is another part of his game I was really high on. He looks great in the pocket and his throwing motion from there is fluid. He has times where he throws across his body/on the run that look bad, but even those look good at times. Another aspect of his game I just expect big time growth.

Conclusion: Mid 3rd-Early 4th Round

Location, location, location. That landing spot is going to matter a lot going forward. Is he going to a QB needy team? Is he going to a confidence killing coach? Is he going to sit behind a good QB with good habit? All questions that will determine his success (as with anyone else) and growth. If he ends up in the right place, I see his potential making him a top 3 QB in this class down the road, just not right now. He’ll definitely go when the QB run inevitably happens. If you miss out on guys like Grier, Kyler, Lock or Haskins, you can’t go wrong with him. You may have to wait, but it’ll be worth it.

Kelvin Harmon, the 1.01? 4 Star Fantasy Football Prospect

Welcome to the 48 Report, a full working database including 48 of our favorite 2019 Draft Prospects. The key, however, is that we focus specifically on their ability to translate as fantasy football players. All players in the database have been/will be scored by 3 writers, and this is their article; explaining their aggregate score, as well as the score of their writer.

All categories are scored on a 1-5 scale; with 5 being the highest score a prospect can receive. The highest aggregate average scores a player can receive is 25. Articles will be posted January-April, all the way up to the draft. Ratings will be adjusted after the combine, based on measurables and after the draft, because as we all know: landing spot matters.

Kelvin Harmon (6’2, 215), Wide Receiver, NC State

20.3 Aggregate Score (4 Star Prospect)

As it currently stands, Kelvin Harmon is the Fantasy Fanalysts’ highest rated receiver, based on his film.  Now, we are still early in the process and have quite a few guys to still look at, but it’s a near guarantee that Harmon is going to be a consensus top 5 receiver for us.  Harmon is a polished player that doesn’t have any huge weaknesses and has the ability to be a true WR 1 in the NFL.

According to 247 Composite, Harmon was a 3-star recruit out of Palmyra, NJ. While at Palmyra High, Harmon had 165 receptions for 2,764 and 36 touchdowns.  Harmon also played safety at Palmyra and recorded 38 tackles, 2 sacks and an INT his senior year.  During his senior year, Harmon was named to the all-state, all-county team and was the Burlington County Player of the Year.  Harmon was rated as the 88th WR in his class and chose N.C. State over Miami, South Carolina and Boston College.

College Production

After his freshman year, where he had 27 catches for 462 yards and 5 touchdowns, Harmon finished his career at N.C. State with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.  During his sophomore season, Harmon had 69 receptions for 1,017 yards and 4 touchdowns. Although the touchdowns weren’t there, Harmon was named to the All-ACC Second Team. As a junior (2018), Harmon had 81 receptions, 1,186 yards and 7 touchdowns, which earned him All-ACC First Team honors.

The major thing that sticks out to me is the lack luster touchdown totals.  However, when looking at the team stats, N.C. State had a lot of talent at the running back position and usually decided to run the ball for touchdowns. 

During Harmon’s sophomore year, Jaylen Samuels and Nyheim Hines, both of whom are in the NFL, combined for 28 total touchdowns.  Than this past season, Harmon finished 2nd on the team for touchdowns behind Reggie Gallaspy, who had 19 total touchdowns (18 rushing). 

I believe that Harmon has the ability to produce in the Red Zone, he just didn’t really have the opportunity while at N.C. State.

Speed/Acceleration: Aggregate Score: 3 (Personal Score: 3)

Harmon displays decent speed for a player his size. The thing that really helps him, though, is that he reaches his top speed very quickly.  He showed the capability to burn past corners on fly routes at the college level, but I am not sure that this will translate to the NFL level when playing against corners with better technique and overall skill.  Harmon also displays good speed on shorter routes, which helps him create separation.

Route Running: Aggregate Score: 4.3 (Personal Score: 4)

Because Harmon doesn’t have a ton of top end speed, he really relies on his route running to help create separation.  Harmon displays great footwork, including a nice stutter step that caused multiple corners to look absolutely silly!

Harmon does a good job operating near the sideline and coming back to the ball.  He displayed a diverse route tree, especially in the short/intermediate range.

Blocking: Aggregate Score: 4.3 (Personal Score: 4)

I completely understand why you may not be interested in Harmon’s blocking ability, considering it won’t earn you any fantasy points.  However, the fact that Harmon is a very capable blocker will allow him to be on the field on any down, distance or situation in the NFL. 

Harmon does a good job of finding a defender and engaging with them.  He also showed the ability to get downfield and block an open man.

Handwork/Positioning: Aggregate Score: 4.6 (Personal Score: 5)

Harmon displays great handwork and body positioning throughout his routes.  Whenever the ball is thrown to him, he seems to have his body in position to make the catch.  Harmon also does a great job of using hands to create space on a consistent basis. 

One of our writers that also graded Harmon said that his handwork reminds him of Deandre Hopkins, which is an incredibly high praise.

Athleticism: Aggregate Score: 4 (Personal Score: 4)

Harmon does a great job of high pointing the ball to grab 50/50 balls. He displays good balance and footwork, especially along the sideline. The biggest knock I have on Harmon is that he displayed very little run after the catch ability. 

He seemed to catch the ball and end up on the ground within 5 yards on almost all of his routes.  Considering he has the tools to produce after the catch, it will be interesting to see if he can develop this skill at the NFL level.

Conclusion: Early/Mid 1st round target

Harmon displays all of the traits and tools to be a true #1 wide receiver in the NFL.  But just like we have been saying all off-season, landing spot is really going to affect where these players get drafted.  If he ends up in a great landing spot, I think there is a legitimate argument for Harmon being taken with the 1.01.  Even if he gets a landing spot that doesn’t seem great, the farthest he should fall is the mid 1st round.

Week 16 RB/TE Start ’em Sit ’em

Here we are, folks! The dream we all dream of. This is our Super Bowl! It all comes down to some good old fashioned trash talk and 16 football games to decide whether or not you’ll be lifting that trophy.

How do you like the new digs? The Fantasy Fanalysts are here to help. Bring on the championship week AND look forward to the off season in preparation for 2019! Don’t forget to use the promo code TOP2 if you sign up for DRAFT! I dipped my toes in for the first time a few weeks back and I have been having a lot of fun!

Let’s talk some RB/TE Starts and Sits!

Running Back: Start ’em

CHRIS CARSON (SEATTLE SEAHAWKS)

Chris Carson has been THE MAN in Seattle. In the last five games, he has averaged a total of 98.4 yards and has scored a touchdown in four out of those five games! Granted, the yards average is slightly skewed by last week’s matchup against the 49ers. In every other week, he was a solid RB2. But, that’s exactly what you want from a guy that you either drafted late OR picked up on waivers!

Now, we have arrived at week 16 and the Seahawks are at home against the Kansas City Chiefs. On the season, the Chiefs are the worst defense against fantasy running backs. 173 yards and 1.3 touchdowns per game! Sometimes, recent weeks might tell a different story. Recent weeks only enforces the trend! Even teams that struggle at RB or were beset with injuries looked wonderful against the Chiefs run defense.

Chris Carson for the win!

KALEN BALLAGE (MIAMI DOLPHINS)

I understand. If you take away the 75 yard touchdown run in week 15, Kalen Ballage stat line would be 11 for 48. Mediocre at best.

I also understand that this is the Championship Week! Are you really going to trust your championship to a relative unknown? Probably not. Let’s be honest, though. You didn’t make it to the championship game having a need at Running Back. This pick is for those redrafters who are still paying attention to their leagues and want to win their consolation matchup. It’s also for the dynasty leagues where Ballage was dropped in week 3 when it was clear that he wasn’t going to be a part of the offense. Go pick up Kalen Ballage!

The Dolphins are at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The last time the Jaguars played an away game, they allowed 1 person to run for 238 yards and score 4 touchdowns. The Jaguars DO NOT CARE when they aren’t at home. This is a glory start and it’s going to feel SO good when you win your matchup because of Kalen Ballage.

Running Back: Sit ’em

JAYLEN SAMUELS (PITTSBURGH STEELERS)

If you’re in a Yahoo league and can start Samuels in your Tight End slot, you should ABSOLUTELY start him. He will be far better than 80% of ALL other tight ends.

Otherwise, stay away. The New Orleans Saints defense has been amazing lately. They have allowed 12 points per game TOTAL in the last 5 weeks. TWELVE POINTS PER GAME!!!! That’s not to the Running Back position. That’s to the entire opposing team!

Here are some scary numbers:

  • Tevin Coleman in week 12 – 8 rushes for 6 yards
  • Peyton Barber in week 13 – 14 rushes for 42 yards
  • Christian McCaffrey in week 15 – 15 rushes for 53 yards. Yes, he still had a good game playing quarterback for a snap and PPR leagues were beneficial.

If you are in a bind, Jaylen Samuels might get you 9 or 10 points. He definitely has a solid floor because Pittsburgh likes to use one running back. But this matchup is the scariest of the week, without a doubt.

ADRIAN PETERSON (WASHINGTON REDSKINS)

75% ineffective in the last 4 games. He was saved by the 90+ yard touchdown run in week 13, otherwise he’d be 100% ineffective. He’s tired and likely isn’t risking severe injury in a losing battle.

This week, the Redskins are playing an away game against the Tennessee Titans. The Redskins could really use a new QB! They might be looking towards a better draft position. I see very little chance of a positive outcome for the Redskins and, in particular, Adrian Peterson. Leave him on your bench OR just drop him all together since he won’t clear fantasy waivers until after his game starts.

Sidebar: Alex Smith’s contract had $71 million in guarantees. Derrius Guice’s infection sounds terrifying. Sorry, Washington. You might be at the bottom of the standings for a few more years.

Tight End: Start ’em

JARED COOK (OAKLAND RAIDERS)

The Raiders actually try when they play on their home field. In addition, they have a winnable matchup against the Denver Broncos. Yes, Denver is favored to win. This IS the Oakland Raiders that we’re talking about.

But, Denver was recently decimated by the Tight End position in week 14 when George Kittle caught 7 passes for 210 yards and scored 3 touchdowns. No, I’m not suggesting that Jared Cook will even sniff those stats. But between his usage and the positive matchup, we’re in the realm of 5 for 60 and a touchdown. Even 5 for 60 WITHOUT the touchdown will be a TE1 day in this wacky position. He’s a good player to have in your lineup this week.

BLAKE JARWIN (DALLAS COWBOYS)

Blake Jarwin is all alone. Geoff Swaim has already been declared out after missing the last 4 games with injury.

If you haven’t noticed, I’m a big fan of home games. Dallas is playing at home. Icing on the cake, they’re playing the Buccaneers. I will listen to the argument that the Bucs defense has improved since firing their Defensive Coordinator a few weeks ago. Indeed, in the last four weeks, the best Tight End performance against the Bucs was George Kittle in week 14 (6 for 48). The Cowboys are in a fight for their playoff seeding. After taking that brutal defeat at the hands of the Colts last week, they will be coming home with the desire to prove themselves in front of their home crowd. And while there is a new DC in Tampa, it’s the same players. They were beaten before, they can be beaten again.

Blake Jarwin will have a decent game.

Tight End: Sit ’em

VANCE MCDONALD (PITTSBURGH STEELERS)

Above, I wrote about the scary New Orleans Saints in the section about Jaylen Samuels. Copy and Paste here. I would imagine that either Antonio Brown or Juju Smith-Schuster will have a decent game. Jaylen Samuels will likely land in RB3 territory. I just don’t have a lot of hope for a high point total. I really hope that, like most fantasy championship matchups that I’ve seen, your Tight End position is filled with Travis Kelce, Zach Ertz, or George Kittle.

For those sitting in the consolation bracket, you might have McDonald on your squad. You can cross your fingers for a lucky touchdown OR you can look elsewhere for a Tight End.

Good luck to each of you in week 16! GO GET THAT CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY! Get those bragging rights. Win your consolation bracket. I truly hope you wake up on the 25th with a special gift of a Fantasy Football Victory!

WEEK 16 DRAFTKINGS/FANDUEL SELECTIONS

QUARTERBACK

Baker Mayfield: vs CIN (DK 6100; FD 7700)

Winning.  Direction.  Hope.  These are all words that haven’t been associated with the Cleveland Browns organization in years while the Cincinnati Bengals are heading in the opposite direction of their interstate rivals.  No team allows more fantasy points to quarterbacks than the Bengals and one that Baker Mayfield enjoyed success against in week 12, throwing for four touchdowns.  Cincinnati gave soon-to-be fired Marvin Lewis one last hurrah in front of the home crowd and now winds down the season on the road and may lack motivation in the final two weeks.  Look for Baker to pierce through a porous, uninspired defense in Cleveland’s home finale to begin putting the finishing touches on its most successful season since 2014.

Dak Prescott: vs TB (DK 5700; FD 7300)

Dak Prescott has been lights out in home games since Cooper became a Cowboy, possessing a +7.89 DK point differential at AT&T Stadium and squares off against a Buccaneers defense that surrenders 37 points per road game.  The DFS community may overlook Dak after his dismal week 15 showing which would be foolish considering Dak has eight touchdown passes at home compared to just one on the road since the trade while the Bucs have allowed multiple touchdown passes in all but one road game.  His ability to scramble goes unnoticed at times but one he can utilize as needed as he’s found paydirt five times with his legs.

Nick Foles: vs HOU (DK 4700; FD 6000)

Rostering Nick Foles is like flipping a coin; will he be the quarterback that scorched the Vikings and Patriots en route to a Super Bowl title or will he be the version that struggled immensely against the Raiders on Christmas night and the Falcons in the divisional round?  He will be forced to throw as the Texans defense allows just 66.35 rushing yards per game but has surrendered the 8th most FPA to tight ends this season and the most FPA to perimeter receivers over the last four weeks.  There’s value to be found at other positions this week where you don’t need to necessarily pay down at quarterback.  If your roster construction involves jamming in two expensive backs or inserting as many high-priced options as possible, Foles allows for that strategy in a game where Philadelphia’s success on offense will be predicated on the MVP of Super Bowl 52.

RUNNING BACK

 

Ezekiel Elliott: vs TB (DK 9000; FD 8800)

The last time he didn’t touch the ball at least 25 times was back in week 9 and both DraftKings and FanDuel neglected to raise his salary heading into this juicy matchup.  Ezekiel Elliott has reached 100 scrimmage yards in every game since week 7 and it’s all but a guarantee he will shred a Buccaneers defense en route to another 100 as the last feature back that didn’t reach that mark against Tampa Bay was Nick Chubb back in week 7.  Zeke’s weekly reliability comes at a hefty cost but it’s a cost worth paying up for as he’s returned value in five of the last seven games.

Nick Chubb: vs CIN (DK 7300; FD 7900)

The Bengals have appeared competent against opposing running backs the last two weeks.  Against Nick Chubb, they will revert back to the turnstiles that allowed 100+ rushing yards in seven of the prior eight games.  Running backs against the Bengals have found the end zone with as much ease as Chubb has in the last month, averaging a touchdown per game in his last four.  As 8.5-point favorites (yes, the Browns are favored by more than a touchdown), look for Chubb to have plenty of opportunities to shred this Bengals defense that has been victim to the position throughout 2018.

Marlon Mack: vs NYG (DK 5500; FD 7000)

From a motivational standpoint, the Giants head into Indianapolis with nothing to play for while the Colts need a win to set up a possible showdown with the Titans for the final AFC Wild Card.  Enemy running backs have run for over 100+ rushing yards in six of the last seven against the G-Men and this is a game where Marlon Mack can once again take over as he did against the Cowboys the week before.  The loss of Damon Harrison to the Lions has really taken its toll on a Giants rushing defense that has struggled since the trade and in a game where the Colts are 9-point favorite, Mack will have plenty of touches to manufacture another solid performance.

Jamaal Williams: at NYJ (DK 5400; FD 5800)

At the time of this writing, Jamaal Williams and the recently signed Kapri Bibbs are the only two running backs on the active roster with Williams being the only one familiar with the playbook.  Essentially, you’re getting a running set to play a minimum of 80% of the snaps on a Packers team that is clearly trying to win this game as Aaron Rodgers is expected to suit up in the Meadowlands.  In an offense that is expected to perform much better now that Green Bay doesn’t have to battle with a vaunted Bears defense, this is essentially a free square in a game that the Packers should win for their first road victory of the season.  Williams totaled 97 scrimmage yards and a touchdown on 16 touches in that game at Soldier Field and should see between 18-20 touches this week at a bargain on both sites.

WIDE RECEIVER

DeAndre Hopkins: at PHI (DK 8600; FD 8900)

14.05 yards per reception, the highest target share on the team, the most red zone targets, and a floor of 12 DK points this season; DeAndre Hopkins meets all of the desirable criteria you’d want against an Eagles secondary that is decimated by injuries and can be exploited on the perimeter.  He’s excelled in road games as 7 of his 11 touchdowns and four of his five 100 receiving yard performances have been in hostile territory and it bodes well for Hopkins to continue his road dominance at Lincoln Financial Field.  He’s the second and most expensive option on DraftKings and FanDuel respectively and has a great chance to go off again as he did against the Jets last week.

Amari Cooper: vs TB (DK 7500; FD 7000)

Regression was all but inevitable for Amari Cooper after he destroyed the Eagles in epic fashion.  Like Dak, a good majority of the DFS community will remain sour on Cooper after a disappointing showing in Indianapolis and that’s a scenario to consider rostering him against a Tampa Bay defense that has been killed by wide receivers outside of Raymond James Stadium.  Cooper boasts a +2.17 target differential in games at AT&T Stadium since the trade from Oakland and should feast on a Bucs defense that surrenders a +8.34 FPPG differential in PPR scoring to wide receivers in road games.

Alshon Jeffery: vs HOU (DK 5300; FD 6300)

It lacks logic as to why it may be the case but Alshon Jeffery benefits by having Nick Foles as the starter instead of Carson Wentz.  In 24 games with Wentz under center, Alshon has just one game over 100 receiving yards vs one game over 100 yards in seven Foles starts.  Also, he has a +2.12 FPPG differential in PPR scoring with Foles as the starter, not including the throwaway game in week 17 last year.  These two figures along with a salary that was never adjusted after an excellent performance on Sunday Night Football put him on the DFS radar against a Houston secondary that surrenders the 7th most FPA to perimeter receivers, including the most in the last four weeks.  Given Houston’s proficiency at stopping the run, Foles may be forced to throw more than the 31 passes he tossed against the Rams and Alshon should be the beneficiary of additional targets in a game the Eagles need to win to stay in wild card contention.

Robby Anderson: vs GB (DK 4500; FD 5900)

He leads the team in targets since Sam Darnold returned to action in week 14 and with Quincy Enunwa missing another game against the Packers this weekend, look for Robby Anderson to once again be an integral part of the offense in a favorable matchup.  Anderson will duel with Josh Jackson and Javier Alexander, cornerbacks that are part of a Green Bay secondary that has been hurt by perimeter receivers over the last two months, giving up the 3rd most FPA to receivers on the outside.  It looks like he has recovered from the high-ankle sprain that bothered him earlier in the year and he has another good opportunity to close out 2018 on a good note.

TIGHT END

Eric Ebron: vs NYG (DK 5700; FD 6100)

In two games against Zach Ertz and one game against George Kittle, the Giants surrendered 23 catches for 217 yards and two touchdowns, an average of 15.06 FD/18.9 DK points per game.  The Giants are not as horrid as they were to the position last year but have been burned by the top-tier of tight ends in 2018 and Eric Ebron is in that tier, especially when Andrew Luck throws to the tight end at the fourth-highest rate in the league.  Lower ownership will come into play after a one catch, eight yard performance against the Cowboys and given he hasn’t posted back-to-back single-digit DK point games all season, it correlates well for Ebron to rebound from last week’s clunker.  

Evan Engram: at IND (DK 4600; FD 5700)

On the other side of the ball, Evan Engram has benefitted from Odell Beckham’s absence as he’s seen a +3.79 target differential and +39.29 receiving yard differential in those two games.  Indianapolis has allowed just the 9th most FPA to tight ends largely in part because the defense keeps them out of the end zone.  However, the Colts have allowed the 2nd most receptions and most receiving yards to the position and if ODB misses his third straight game, fire up Engram with confidence as the Giants should be playing from behind as 9-point underdogs.

David Njoku: vs CIN (DK 3800; FD 5300)

Paying up for tight end didn’t prove effective in week 15 on the main slate as neither Kittle, Ebron, Gronk, nor Cook eclipsed double-digit fantasy points.  David Njoku is a nice pivot in a good matchup for those unwilling to pay up again at the tight end position.  He’s seeing a floor of four targets in five of the last six games and faces a Bengals team that has given up eight touchdowns to the position.  He crossed the pylons against them in week 12 and if he’s able to do so again this week, Njoku will certainly be on his way to easily returning value.

DEFENSE

Los Angeles Rams: at ARI (DK 3200; FD 4900)

The Cardinals allowed seven sacks, three turnovers, and a defensive score to the Falcons last week and now get to deal with Aaron Donald on Sunday.  The offense has been held to under 20 points in 11 of 14 games and after this date with the Rams, it will become 12 of 15.

Miami: vs JAX (DK 2700; FD 4400)

Take away the Dede Westbrook punt return for a touchdown and the Jaguars have averaged eight points with Cody Kessler as the starter.  Not to mention allowing five sacks and 1.5 turnovers per game in that two-game span.

New Orleans: vs PIT (DK 2300; FD 3500)

Contrary to popular belief, the Steelers have been sluggish offensively, scoring 21 or less in four of the last five games with Big Ben throwing 1.5 interceptions in his last four games.  Meanwhile, the Saints have forced multiple turnovers and kept opponents under 17 points in five of their last six games.

PRICE SHOPPING

Each week, I will identify what players are bargains based on the salary cap percentage difference they represent on the respective site.  Here are the notable week 16 bargains from both sites:

NOTABLE DRAFTKINGS BARGAINS

QB Matt Ryan: 1.96

WR Chris Hogan: 2.23

TE Dallas Goedert: 3.3

TE Kyle Rudolph: 2.36

DEF Jacksonville: 2.6

NOTABLE FANDUEL BARGAINS

RB Ezekiel Elliott: 3.34

RB Jaylen Samuels: 2.24

WR Amari Cooper: 3.34