January 12, 2019 2:08 pm
In the Saturday Night slot on Wild Card weekend, the 10-6 Dallas Cowboys travel to take on the 13-3 Los Angeles Rams. For the postseason, FanDuel provides a variety of contests, including single-game slates, allowing football enthusiasts to stay involved in the action.
For those unfamiliar, single-game slates feature five flex spots with identical scoring to the main slate. However, kickers are included in these contests and there is an “MVP” roster slot. The MVP receives 1.5-times his total fantasy points, making this spot crucial.
Bookmakers currently peg the Rams as 7.5-point favorites with a 49.5-point over/under. With a projected high-scoring affair in store, here are the notable matchups to target on this slate.
Todd Gurley ($16,000): All clear from his pesky, late-season knee injury, Todd Gurley looks ready to rock as a 7.5-point home favorite against the Cowboys. In his four games prior to the injury, Gurley averaged 19.25 touches per game, including an impressive 28 targets in that span. Dallas has been particularly vulnerable to pass-catching backs this season, allowing the fifth-most catches to the position in the regular season (101) and the sixth-most receiving yards in the last four weeks of the regular season (209). While Gurley comes with the highest price tag, he remains one of the safest plays on the entire slate.
Ezekiel Elliott ($15,500): In the Cowboys’ backfield, Ezekiel Elliott has absolutely taken the league by storm. He has averaged 29.5 touches per game in his last four contests, including 32 targets in the receiving game. Boding well for Zeke, the Rams have struggled to contain enemy back in recent weeks. In the last four games of the regular season, LA allowed the 6th-most rushing yards to the position (461), and for the year, they rank 22nd in rush defense, per our schedule-adjusted metrics. While the Cowboys remain large underdogs, Zeke looks game-script independent with the highest touch projection of the weekend, per our models.
Jared Goff ($15,500): Playing fantasy’s highest scoring position, Jared Goff gets the edge here over Dak Prescott. Goff has played much better at home this season, with a 22-to-3 touchdown-to-interception ratio in LA, versus a 10-to-9 ratio on the road. Dallas has played solid pass defense for much of the season, ranking 15th by our metrics. However, this secondary allowed the eighth-most passing yards in the last four games of the regular season (1,057). These struggles continued into Wild Card Weekend, where Russell Wilson threw for 233 yards on only 28 attempts. Goff could be a contrarian MVP pick for this slate given the two big-name running backs available.
Robert Woods ($12,000): Since Cooper Kupp‘s midseason ACL tear, Robert Woods has led the Rams in targets (52), receptions (31), receiving yards (387), and air yards (553). Noted above, the Cowboys’ biggest weakness on defense remains the passing game, where they finished bottom-12 in yards allowed to opposing wide receivers in the last four regular season games. Last week, Tyler Lockett flamed this unit for 120 yards receiving on 4 catches. Playing as Goff’s number-one receiver, Woods remains the Rams’ steadiest option at wideout.
Josh Reynolds ($9,000): After his snaps dropped to 51% in Week 16, Josh Reynolds rebounded with a 96% snap share in Week 17. Without Kupp, Reynolds ranked third on the Rams in targets (41), receiving yards (305), and second in air yards (516). For the sake of comparison, Brandin Cooks recorded 43 targets, 336 receiving yards, and 513 air yards post-Kupp. Priced at a major discount compared to Woods and Cooks, Reynolds offers a cheap attachment to Goff in a game with a 49.5-point over/under.
Gerald Everett ($6,500): Coming on strong of late, Gerald Everett has out-snapped Tyler Higbee in each of the Rams’ last two games. Everett has reached at least six targets in three of his last four games, showing some viability in the pass game. In this same span, Higbee has a single-game high of two targets. The Cowboys allowed the fourth-most catches to tight ends this season (88), creating an opening for Everett to exceed expectations.
Tavon Austin ($6,000): With Allen Hurns out for the year and Cole Beasley dinged up, Tavon Austin appears in line for increased snaps in the slot. Austin played just 12% of the Cowboys’ snaps in the Wild Card Round, but that was also his first game action since Week 6. The Rams rank 10th in pass defense, according to our metrics, creating a touch matchup for all of Dallas’ receivers. However, as 7.5-point underdogs, the Cowboys should throw early and often. Close to the minimum price on FanDuel, Austin is a calculated dart throw.
Dalton Schultz ($5,000): Like Austin above, Dalton Schultz enters the picture in the Divisional Round due to the uncertain health of Blake Jarwin. Schultz has split time with Jarwin for much of the season, playing at least 51% of the Cowboys’ snaps in each of their last five games. While he saw only nine targets in that span, the Jarwin injury could open the door for additional opportunities for Schultz, who is priced at the minimum. LA has been absolutely rocked by tight ends this season, allowing the third-most yards to the position throughout the regular season (1,075). Schultz comes with not only a fantastic matchup, he can also help you jam in multiple studs. But he’s worth targeting only if Jarwin sits.
Matthew Gajewski is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Matthew Gajewski also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mgajewski. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel. Tags: divisional, fanduel, fantasy, helper, round, saturday, single
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