It's finally here. The NFL season is upon us. Similar to MLB we will provide DFS articles in coordination with our sponsors over at FanDuel. Every Saturday I will have an article posted with plays I like for that week. Since this is our first week with NFL I will state what type of research goes in to making a DFS lineup.
- Vegas Lines: Similar to MLB we have to look at the totals for games, it will give us a better idea of what offenses and defenses to target.
- Team Secondary: Looking at a teams' secondary is crucial. This dictates how we choose our QB/WR.
- Offensive Line: Running backs benefit from strong offensive lines, as do quarterbacks since less pressure is on them.
- Defensive Line: A week defensive line will help me decided what running back to use.
All of these variables factor in how I make my picks for football DFS. It really isn't rocket science, but there are a lot more variables with NFL than MLB. Similar to MLB, I have different plays I like to target for tournaments and cash games - for tournaments I go for high upside players, for cash games I go for players with high floors.
Here is how FanDuel's scoring system works
Without further adieu here is our top plays for week one.
QB (GPP) - Jake Locker, Tennessee Titans, $6,600 - I really like the moves the Titans have made this offseason. They added to an already strong offensive line, they drafted Bishop Sankey, and they hire Ken Whisenhunt as their head coach. Locker has the right tools, the right head coach, and the right matchup today. It's going to be a challenge in Arrowhead no doubt, but I think the Chiefs secondary is fraudulent and Locker can take advantage of them.
QB (Cash) - Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts, $9,200 - Luck is a great cash game option since he will be throwing the ball a lot - which means he will get a a lot of points. The Denver Broncos' defense is "meh" at best, and I expect this to be the highest scoring contest of the weekend.
RB (GPP) - Shane Vereen, New England Patriots, $6,600 - Vereen is in the GPP section for one reason - Bill Belichick is unpredictable. Vereen has a high ceiling if he is utilized correctly, and he is one of Brady's favorite targets.
RB (Cash) - Matt Forte, Chicago Bears, $9,200 - Forte is a beast plain and simple. Unfortunately I had to watch some Bills game this preseason, and they look god damn awful. I would be shocked if the Bears didn't bury them on Sunday. Back to Forte, he gets a bump in value since you get half a point per reception, and he should be on the field quite often. He is my favorite play of the week at RB.
WR (GPP) - Victor Cruz, New York Giants, $6,900 - Cruz is a WR 1 on a team that will most likely be playing from behind on Monday - add to the fact that the Lions secondary isn't good, you have a great wide receiver for your tournament rosters.
WR (Cash) - T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts, $6,400 - It's only right to pair our cash game QB with one of our wide receivers. Hilton is coming off a great sophomore season and will look to continue building on his great chemistry with Luck. As mentioned with Luck this game most likely will be very high scoring, and Hilton's price point is just right.
TE - Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers, $5,600 - The Cardinals had the worst defense against tight ends last season, and the chemistry between Rivers/Gates is well documented. Sure there are sexier options than Gates, but you don't want to get too cute in cash games.
K - Greg Zuerlein, St. Louis Rams, $4,500 - Greg The Leg will be a regular on my DFS roster all season, he doesn't miss too many FG's and can hit them from 50+. He is priced at minimum cost and with the matchup the Rams have I can see him coming up with an acceptable amount of points.
D/ST - St. Louis Rams, $5,400 - This is an interesting matchup, the Vikings have Matt Cassell at QB who I want to pick on, but have Adrian Peterson who most likely will do well on Sunday. I do think the Rams defensive line has improved and could cause problems for the run game. Another aspect of D/ST is the special teams, the Rams have this kid named Tavon Austin, I'm not sure if you heard of him but he is known to run kicks in for touchdowns which is definitely an added bonus.
Remember this is just week one, take it as a learning experience and don't go overboard. Good luck to all and enjoy the first week of the NFL.