New England Patriots vs Denver Broncos 1/24/16 Preview & Picks

  • At 3:05 pm, Tom Brady and his New England Patriots will face-off with Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. 

Tom Brady is one of the greatest, if not the greatest quarterback of all-time. Peyton Manning is one of the greatest, if not the greatest quarterback of all-time. Tom Brady is in the running for 2015 league MVP. Peyton Manning is starting for the second consecutive week after taking the job back from Brock Osweiler. My Point? The Patriots will go as far as Brady takes them. The Broncos will go as far as their defense takes them.

While I don’t expect Julian Edelman or Brandon LaFell to beat those long, rangy Denver CBs over the top, Edelman has the potential to catch a ton of short, underneath passes. He’s definitely a WR1,  as Brady could easily target him 12+ times in such an important game. Something along the lines of 10 catches for 110 yards and a TD could be what you’re looking at in return of the high price tag. It would be a surprise to me if LaFell can muster up anything DFS relevant in his matchup against Harris Jr. (though battling an injury) and Talib.

Danny Amendola working the slot has a much better shot at putting up a big game than the Patriots official #2 wideout. Though he only caught two balls on three targets last week and has been limited in practice due to a knee injury all week, he provides the same kind of quick twitch inside ability as Edelman does, which is how you want to attack this stout defense.

Finally, the man you all want to hear about: Rob Grrrrronkowski. Gronk could have a MONSTER game here. With the ferocious pass-rushing ability that the Broncos possess, Bill Belichick will want to feature his star TE up the seam to take the pressure off Tom Brady. There is no better way to keep the linebackers at home than to force them to drop into coverage because the Gronk is just destroying you. Maybe he won’t have monster yardage, but I’m banking on two TDs on Sunday.

Steven Jackson definitely won’t be a DFS factor, so James White is the Pats back to own. His pass-caching ability on swings, screens and checkdowns will also be instrumental in slowing down Demarcus Ware, Von Miller and co. He should have his fair share of chances to make plays.

 

On the home team’s side, the Sheriff Peyton Manning will need to execute flawlessly to lead his Broncos to the Super Bowl contest. Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders will need to bust out some major YAC’s to spearhead this attack, while CJ Anderson and Ronnie Hillman churn out chunks on the ground.

Demaryius Thomas will face a big matchup with Patriots CB Logan Ryan. Ryan shut him down in Week 12, with three pass breakups and as Brock Osweiler went 1-of-8 for 36 yards when targeting Thomas. He is a big target and constant red-zone threat, but isn’t always the dominant factor you’re looking for.

Sanders most likely will be face-to-face with Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler on Sunday. The very same Butler that he beat deep in November when he piled up 113 yards. His work in tight and quickness allow him to get separation against a tight Patriots D, and he works hard to run after the catch and eat up yardage.

CJ Anderson and Hillman are always a toss up, but Anderson had his best game of the year against New England with 113 yards of his own and two TDs. The run game can be inconsistent, but the Broncos need it to be on point on Sunday.

Advice: Brady, Gronkowski, Sanders, Edelman, and Anderson should be the top performers. Of course that comes with a hefty price tag, so discounts like James White could be the key to your DFS victory.

Posted in NFL

NFL Divisional Round Value Picks

Quarterback

There are no locks at quarterback in the Divisional Round with strong pass defenses and questionable starts.  The weak link in pass defense for the weekend is Pittsburgh.  They have one of the weakest pass defenses in the league, and have only made it this far with their explosive offense (mostly just the Big Ben and Antonio Brown connection).

However, there are question marks on the other side of the ball as well.  Peyton Manning has won back his starting job this game but if things go south for him, an early substitution could be made.  I personally have faith in the sheriff, he wants to leave the league on a high note and with this favorable matchup, he may be one of the best picks this week.  He comes at a bargain too as the cheapest quarterback for the week (Landry Jones and Brock Osweiller come cheaper if either of them end up starting).  However, there is the possibility Roethlisberger plays minimal minutes and in the hands of Jones, the Steelers don’t stand a chance.  If this ends up being a blowout early it could mean a lot of carries for Anderson and Hilman and Mannings numbers paying the price.

Although Roethlisberger was able to deconstruct this defense last time around in the regular season, his health is in question and it is not guaranteed he will even start.  We have seen the huge numbers Big Ben can put up against any defense, but I don’t think this will be his week.

The next chance for a shootout is Packers and Cardinals.  Vegas has this one rated as the highest scoring with an Over Under of 50, -7 point win the Cardinals favor.  An argument could be made either way on this one.  Aaron Rodgers has been here before and knows what he needs to do.  Plus the Packers looked great last weekend against the Redskins.  However, the Cardinals are not the Redskins, and we have not seen the Packer’s perform very well this year against a sound defense.

The playoff experience of Rodgers is exactly what Palmer is missing.  He has played one playoff game in his career (two if you count the quarter he played before leaving the game with a shoulder injury).  My take on it, experience is overrated, football is football.  If this were the Super Bowl then experience may take a role, but in this round, I think Palmer will continue to perform as he has all season—Very Well.

RunningBack

The other two matchups have the potential to go either way.  The top ranked matchup between Seattle and Carolina could be a high scoring shootout or a defensive battle, the only thing you can bet it won’t be is a blowout in either direction.  Marshawn Lynch is set to make his return this week (although that was the word last week as well).  With his questionable health and the matchup, I think you avoid Seattle running backs completely.  The same can be said about Jonathan Stewart,  although drastically different in running style, if Adrian Peterson can’t get any yardage against the Seahawks, I don’t expect anyone to.

Like I mentioned earlier, CJ Anderson should get plenty of carries.  I think he is the best pick of the weekend.  James White also should be a good value as well.  Tom Brady and the Patriots won’t make the same mistakes as the Texans last week.

Wide Receiver

The top picks at receiver should be Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders no matter who is playing at quarterback.  They will pay the price as well though if Denver gets ahead early and focuses on the running game.  Both of these receivers however have great synergy with both Manning and Osweiller and last time against the Steelers DT had 2 touchdowns while Sanders had well over 100 receiving yards and a touchdown.

The Cardinals receiver squad should be able to generate some good value this weekend as well.  In the playoffs it will be all Larry Fitzgerald who brings the experience that Palmer lacks.  In his 2008 playoff run he averaged 130 receiving yards per game in the 4 playoff games and had 7 receiving touchdowns.  That has to be on par with the most impressive individual postseason performance of all time.

 

Posted in NFL

Cincinnati Bengals versus Denver Broncos Monday Night Football Real Money Fantasy Picks 12-28-2015

It will be a battle between division rivals on Monday Night Football as the Denver Broncos will face the Cincinnati Bengals. DFS draft managers can tune to ESPN TV on December 28th to track the results of their one day real money fantasy leagues.

The Cincinnati Bengals will have to navigate through the remainder of the regular season behind backup quarterback A.J. McCarron. Andy Dalton with his broken thumb is expected to miss the remainder of the season. The Bengals have played very well on the defensive side of the football ranking tops in the league in scoring defense as their opponents average only 17.4 points per game.

The Denver Broncos will continue to start backup Brock Osweiler for an injured Peyton Manning. The veteran signal caller Manning has plantar fascia in his foot and has been ruled out and is on a week to week basis with the team. Like the Bengals the Broncos are strong defensively. The team is number one in the league against the pass and run and limits opponents to only 279.9 yards per game.

Cincinnati Bengals QB:

A.J. McCarron

The second year quarterback is completing 70.2% of his passes for 494 yards with three touchdowns and two picks. In his first start for the Bengals the signal caller hit on 71.4% of his throws for 192 yards with a touchdown. In relief at home to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 15 McCarron threw for 280 yard with two touchdowns and two picks.

Cincinnati Bengals RB:

Giovanni Bernard

Bernard has been the most efficient running back on the roster in 2015. Unfortunately for fantasy draft managers Bernard is sharing carries with Jeremy Hill. He has rushed 140 times for 680 yards with two touchdowns. Giovanni Bernard is running for 4.9 yards per carry on the campaign.

Jeremy Hill

Hill is in his second year with the Bengals. He had great rookie season where he rushed for 1124 yards and nine touchdowns with 5.1 yards per carry. In 2015 Hill is not having the same success. He has 180 rushing attempts for 635 yards with ten touchdowns. Jeremy Hill is rushing for just 3.4 yards a carry on the season.

Cincinnati Bengals WR:

A.J. Green

The Bengals leading receiver has caught 77 balls for 1206 yards with eight touchdowns. Green is averaging 15.7 yards per catch on the campaign which is his highest total since his rookie season. He had a big game in Week 14 at home to Pittsburgh with six catches for 132 yards and a touchdown.

Marvin Jones

Jones has contributed for Cincinnati in 2015 as he has career high 57 receptions for 745 yards and four touchdowns. He is coming off a nice performance at San Francisco last week with four catches for 89 yards.

Denver Broncos QB:

Brock Osweiler

The fourth year backup has five starts and one relief appearance for Denver. Osweiler is completing 60.3% of his throws for 1436 yards with eight touchdowns and four picks. He had a good game last week at Pittsburgh in defeat as he threw for 296 yards with three touchdowns and one pick. Two weeks ago at home to Oakland Osweiler passed for 308 yards.

Denver Broncos RB:

Ronnie Hillman

Hillman is sharing carries with C.J. Anderson. He has 183 rushing attempts for 711 yards with six touchdowns. He is rushing for just 3.9 yards per carry on the season. Ronnie Hillman has rushed for below 3.5 yards per carry over his past three games.

C.J. Anderson

The three year back has run 128 times for 552 yards with three touchdowns. He is running for 4.3 yards per carry which is a career low.

Denver Broncos WR:

Demaryius Thomas

The Broncos wide out leads the team with 93 catches for 1128 yards with five touchdowns. His 12.1 yards per catch average is a career worst and 2 ½ yards fewer than his average in 2014.

Emmanuel Sanders

Sanders have caught 67 balls for 969 yards with five touchdowns. His 14.5 yards per catch average is his highest over his six year career. He is coming off a great game at Pittsburgh with ten grabs for 181 yards with a touchdown.

NFL Monday Night Football Fantasy League Picks

QB: Brock Osweiler (Broncos)

WR: Emmanuel Sanders (Broncos)

TE: Vernon Davis (Broncos)

Posted in NFL

NFL Fantasy Football Draft News 10-3-2015 

Minnesota Vikings versus Denver Broncos NFL Fantasy Preview 10-3-2015 

The undefeated Denver Broncos are at home to face the Minnesota Vikings from week four action from the NFL. Fantasy football draft managers can tune to FOX at 4:25PM Eastern Time on Sunday October 4th to follow the results of their roster picks.

After a 20-3 road loss at San Francisco in week one the Minnesota Vikings returned for two home dates. They came away with wins in both games as they defeated NFC North rivals the Detroit Lions 26-16 then in week three they got past the San Diego Chargers 31-14. After a bad week one the Vikings running game turned around and Adrian Peterson shook off the rust and got back to his good form. Minnesota is the third ranked running team in the NFL as they rush for 144 yards per game. Over on defense the team sits fifth best in points allowed as opponents push across just 16.7 points a game on their defense.

Denver is a 3-0 team at the moment. Their offense begun slow but has shown signs improving in week two and three with wins on the road to Kansas City and Detroit. The constant all season has been the play of the Broncos defense. This unit is the number one ranked team in yards allowed per game (259) and passing yards allowed (176). They hold opponents to just 16.3 points a game ranking fourth best in the league. The run game has sputtered with new offensive lineman trying to get acquainted with the system. Denver rushes for 57 yards per game which is 31st and second to last in the NFL.

Minnesota Vikings QB:

Teddy Bridgewater

The second year quarterback is hitting on 67% of his throws for 505 yards with a touchdown and two picks. He struggled against the Chargers passing for 121 yards completing 13 of 24 throws with an interception.

Minnesota Vikings RB:

Adrian Peterson

The pro bowler is back in 2015 and has rushed 59 times for 291 yards and two touchdowns. He has broken off three runs for twenty or more yards and is averaging nearly five yard a carry. Last week against San Diego Peterson rushed 20 times for 126 yards and two touchdowns. He ran for over six yards a carry.

Minnesota Vikings WR:

Mike Wallace

The deep threat was acquired in the offseason and has grabbed 12 passes for 150 yards. He has yet to score a touchdown reception as he tries and build chemistry with Bridgewater. In Game 1 he caught six passes but had only three catches in games against the Lions and Chargers.

Denver Broncos QB:

Peyton Manning:

Manning is completing 63.8% of his passes this year for 755 yards with five touchdowns and three picks. He was accurate in the Detroit game last week hitting on 31 of 42 passes for 324 yards with two touchdowns and one pick..

Denver Broncos RB:

Ronnie Hillman

The running backs have not performed well this year. Hillman has 28 carries for 88 yards and a touchdown. He is averaging just 3.1 yards a carry.

C.J. Anderson

The third year back has run for 74 yards on 32 carries. That is a miniscule 2.3 yards per rush attempt.

Denver Broncos WR:

Demaryius Thomas

The Broncos veteran wide receiver has 24 receptions for 268 yards with a touchdown. He caught nine balls against Detroit last week for 92 yards and a touchdown.

Emmanuel Sanders

Sanders have been targeted 35 times on the campaign and caught 22 balls for 239 yards with two touchdowns. He had six catches for 87 yards against the Lions.

Posted in NFL

Denver Broncos versus Detroit Lions
Sunday Night Fantasy NFL Picks 9-27-2015

Sunday Night Football features the Detroit Lions at home welcoming into town Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Fantasy Football draft managers will tune to NBC TV on September 27th at 8:30PM Eastern Time to track the scoring results of their roster picks.

Denver enters play with a mark of 2-0. After an ugly 19-13 home win to Baltimore in Week 1 the team traveled to Kansas City on a short week for a Thursday night battle they won 31-24. Peyton Manning had a touchdown pass in the closing seconds to tie it and the Broncos returned a Chiefs fumble for a touchdown just seconds later for the outright win. The Broncos have defended very well this year as they are at the top of the league in total defense as they surrender just 255 yards per game. Denver is number one against the pass by allowing 145 yards passing per game to their opponents. The running game has sputtered this year as the team runs for just 65 yards per game ranking 29th in the NFL.

The Detroit Lions are a desperate 0-2 team as the take the field in their home opener. They began the year with road games at San Diego and Detroit to start the year. The Lions blew a big lead to San Diego in week one by getting outscored 23-7 in the second half of a 33-28 road defeat. Last week the Lions traveled to division rival Minnesota Vikings and were defeated 26-16. The Lions have struggled on the defensive side of the football by ranking 31st and second to last in total defense by giving up 416 yards per game. Teams run for 147 yards and average 29 points per game on the Lions ranking the club amongst the bottom teams at 28th this year.

Denver Broncos QB:

Peyton Manning

The veteran signal caller threw for 256 yards and three touchdowns in the victory against the Kansas City Chiefs. He has thrown a pick in each game of this season. Manning was clutch in that Thursday night game as he threw a game tying touchdown in the final seconds of the game.

Denver Broncos RB:

Ronnie Hillman

The Broncos continue to play running back by committee which hurts NFL fantasy draft managers. Hillman leads the club with 75 yards rushing on 21 carries for just 3.6 yards per run.

C.J. Anderson

The third year pro running back has 24 carries for just 56 yards which averages out to 2.3 yards per run. He ran for 27 yards on Thursday night against Kansas City on 12 carries.

Denver Broncos WR:

Demaryius Thomas

Thomas leads the Broncos with 15 catches for 176 yards. He longest catch was for 22 yards and has no touchdown receptions on the campaign.

Emmanuel Sanders:

Sanders have 16 catches for 152 yards with two touchdowns. He is well below his 13 yards per catch average during his career.

Detroit Lions QB:

Matthew Stafford

It has been a tough start of the year for Stafford who has thrown for four touchdowns but has three picks on the year. He has completed 61% of his throws this year for 532 yards.

Detroit Lions RB:

Ameer Abdullah

The rookie running back had much of his potential shine in the preseason. Now in the regular season Abdullah had 13 carries for 59 yards with a touchdown and a long run for 24 yards.

Joique Bell

Looks like Bell will be losing his carries to Abdullah as Bell has run for just 16 yards on ten carries for 1.6 yards a carry.

Detroit Lions WR:

Calvin Johnson

The veteran wide out has 12 catches for 122 yards and a touchdown. Johnson averages 16 yards per catch in his career but just 10 yards a catch in 2015. He was targeted 17 times last week at Minnesota and caught ten balls for 83 yards and a touchdown.

Golden Tate

Tate has ten catches for 104 yards. In the Vikings game last week Tate in his six catches averaged 13.3 yards per reception.

Posted in NFL

Fantasy Football Best Picks – Week 3

It’s the 3rd weekend of one week fantasy football and injuries already making waves in the league. It doesn’t get easier in Dallas. After losing Dez Bryant on week one, they lose their quarterback Tony Romo on week two. The Dallas Cowboys will try to stay undefeated without those players in the lineup. They will face the Atlanta Falcons who are also 2-0. The other teams who will try to keep their record clean this week are the Cincinnati Bengals, the Carolina Panthers, the New York Jets, the Arizona Cardinals, the Denver Broncos, the Green Bay Packers, and the Super Bowl champs, New England Patriots. Now, it’s time for some fantasy football hot picks:

QB Peyton Manning – Denver Broncos

Season: 431 PassYDs, 3 TDs, 74.2 QBRate, 2 INTs

He got off to a great start this year against Kansas City, but then hit a wall in the home opener facing the Ravens (even though the Broncos won). Manning knows how to regroup and has one of the best pre-game preparation in the NFL. He also has an elite group of receivers with him. It’s no doubt that he will have a great game against the struggling Detroit Lions.

RB Alfred Morris & RB Matt Jones – Washington Redskins

Morris’ Season:  193 TotalYDs, 0 TD, 4.2 AVGRush/Jones’ Season: 174 TotalYDs, 2 TDs, 6 AVGRush, 1 FL

It’s normal that if you can’t have an efficient quarterback, you at least need a good running game. That’s what’s happening in Washington. They are using a combo of running backs to elevate their chances to win. Alfred Morris and Matt Jones will continue to share time and fantasy value against the New York Giants.

WR/PR Travis Benjamin – Cleveland Browns

Season: 368 TotalYDs, 4 TDs, 6 Receptions

The AFC Special Teams Player of the Week number 2 will face off against the worst defense in the league, the Oakland Raiders. He was able to return a punt for a touchdown last week. Be ready to see Benjamin all over the field on Sunday.

WR Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos

Season: 182 YDs, 2 TDs, 7 Receptions

Thomas will be the number one option in offense for Manning this weekend, especially against a team that is really struggling against the pass this season.

WR/PR Jarvis Landry – Miami Dolphins

Season: 282 TotalYDs, 1 TD, 16 Reception

He has shown how exceptional he can be against the Jacksonville Jaguars last week. Now, it’s time for another round against divisional foes, the Buffalo Bills. The 22 year-old will be one of the top receivers at the end of the season.

WR/PR Emmanuel Sanders – Denver Broncos

Season: 172 TotalYDs, 2 TDs, 16 Receptions

He and Manning have developed a good chemistry. Manning relies on Sanders for the big plays week in and week out. Look for him to get back into a touchdown rhythm, after getting shunned by Baltimore last week.

TE Owen Daniels – Denver Broncos

Season: 24 YDs, 5 Receptions

It’s no secret that Denver offensive coach Gary Kubiak loves his tight ends. That was shown in week one against the Kansas City Chiefs, as Owen Daniels gained 19 yards in 3 receptions. Let see what Daniels can do against an underachieving defense like Detroit’s. I believe good things will happen for him.

D Denver Broncos

Season: 18.5 Pts/G, 243.5 YDs/G, 7 Sacks, 3 FF, 4 INTs, 2 TDs Returns

If it wasn’t enough to pick the Broncos to annihilate the Lions defense, here it is: I choose Denver’s D do the same thing with Detroit’s offense. The Lions are going to have a hard time holding the Broncos in every aspects of the game. Stafford is still bothered by injury and whether he is back or not, they will rely in a rookie running back (Ameer Abdullah) and an aging receiver (Calvin Johnson) for offense. That is not good enough to succeed against one of the best defense in the league.

Fantasy Baseball Picks Recap

QB Peyton Manning – Denver Broncos

RB Alfred Morris – Washington Redskins

Matt Jones – Washington Redskins

WR Travis Benjamin – Cleveland Browns

WR Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos

WR Jarvis Landry – Miami Dolphins

WR Emmanuel Sanders – Denver Broncos

TE Owen Daniels – Denver Broncos

Defense – Denver Broncos

Posted in NFL

Fantasy Football – NFL Preview – Denver Broncos

All sports fans around the world, come learn How to Play Fantasy Football. In the next few weeks, we are going to do a preview of every football team in preparation for the NFL 2015 season. So be very excited and make your selections in Fantasy Football Cash Drafts, starting September 10th.

The Denver Broncos have dominated the AFC West for the last four years, under head coach John Fox. Fox is now a member of the Chicago Bears. His replacement, Gary Kubiak, will bring a totally different personality to the team. It will be interesting how Manning and the Broncos performs under his instructions.

Cash Draft Offensive analysis

QB Peyton Manning isn’t what he used to be, but he is still among the top 5 quarterbacks this year. He’s one of the best play action passer in the league, but the art of running has always eluded him. Last year, he has collected 395 completions for 4727 yards and 39 touchdowns with 15 interceptions. His numbers started to drop a little bit in the latter part of the season. Manning will need all the help he can get from his offensive line again this year. The problem is that they’ve lost their best linesman OT Ryan Clady for the season.

RB C.J. Anderson took charge of the back end in the second half of last season. He ran for 849 yards and also caught another 34 passes for 324 yards. Anderson had a total of 10 touchdowns in 2014. The 2013 undrafted free agent was the first Broncos running back to have two games in a season with more than 150 rushing yards, since 2004.

Peyton Manning’s favorite target, Wes Welker, is no longer with the club. That means that both WR’s Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders will battle it out to be in Manning’s bubble. Thomas has just signed a lucrative contract, after accumulating 111 receptions for 1619 yards and 11 touchdown. While Sanders had a breakout season with 101 receptions for 1404 yards and 9 touchdown. He was also a solid rusher, acquiring 8 carries 44 yards (5.5 yards per game). They are probably the best combo of receivers in the NFL this year.

TE Owen Daniels has played under coach Kubiak since 2006, and has got consistent numbers every year when he’s not injured. So there is good chemistry there, and that could reflect onto this year. Daniels had 48 receptions for 527 yards and 4 touchdowns. Manning has a tendency to use is tight ends more often than not. This season could be Daniels best yet.

 Cash Draft Defensive analysis

DE Derek Wolfe will be missing the first four weeks of action because of performance enhancing drugs. His absence weakens the left side a little. DE Antonio Smith, who has been solid in a weak Oakland defense last year, will take his place. DT Malik Jackson will be a threat from the right side. He had 42 combined tackle last year.

OLB Von Miller will be a force to be wrecking with at 26 year-old. He has 49 sacks already in his 4 year NFL career. The other outside linebacker spot will go to veteran DeMarcus Ware. He is not the same player he was in Dallas. But with 10 sacks last year, he’s still a threat.

Chris Harris Jr leads a very good corner back group with Aquib Talib and Bradley Roby. Both Harris and Talib had their ticket to the pro bowl last year. SS T.J. Ward who also participated to the pro bowl will be back in this excellent secondary squad.

Fantasy Football Outlook

The Broncos may have a few holes here and there, but they still looks great to win the AFC West division… as long as Manning stays healthy, of course. If Manning gets injured or shows signs of his age, then it could spell trouble for Denver with no good backup to rely on. And with Ryan Clady missing the first few weeks, it will allow opposing team easier access to sack and hurt the 39 year-old.

Posted in NFL

NFL Fantasy Picks to win each Contest Type

One Day NFL Fantasy drafts are a great alternative for the season long fantasy player looking to add a little more excitement to their fantasy experience while turning their fantasy skill into real money. The issue most crossover players make however is they do not realize the subtle strategy changes necessary to be successful in Daily Fantasy Contests.

One of those such strategy changes is making your picks depending on the contest you are in. There are two broad categories of DFS contests: 50/50s and tournaments. 50/50s are contests (including head to heads) where there are a number of users in the tournament and the top scoring half of users are winners and get $1.80 back for each dollar bet (since the DFS site takes a cut). Tournaments on the other hand pay out to a much smaller portion of the entrants but they pay out in larger amounts, usually graduated to where the first place entrant makes a very large amount.

It’s pretty clear cut that it takes more points scored by your lineup to be in the money in a tournament than it does in a 50/50 contest, however, it is not quite as clear how you should adjust your picks to accommodate that.

50/50 contests

Let’s first look at 50/50 contests and head to heads. In these lineups you are aiming for consistent players and an overall low risk lineup, since scoring a huge point total (and taking on more risk) gives you no more money than the user who just barely exceeds the threshold to score.

While you can go over each individual’s players volatility in performances over the season and recent seasons, it is easier to judge risk positionally. Quarterbacks and running backs for instance have much more consistent fantasy value than wide receivers and tight ends. Don’t take that to mean quarterbacks and running backs score more points however, as while wide receivers and tight ends are just more volatile, meaning they may score 0 points on a day or they may score 40 while a quarterback may be more in a 15-25 point range at the same salary level for example.

In a 50/50 contest however, you don’t need that huge 40 fantasy points value performance from a player. You just need reliable scorers. This means spend a little extra money at that quarterback and running back positions where you can count on them to hit their value, and if you are playing with a flex position, use a running back. Additionally, a running quarterback can be a more reliable fantasy points scorer than a pocket quarterback.

Good 50/50 picks for week 1 at Running Back are Eddie Lacy, Matt Forte, Jamaal Charles, or LeSean McCoy. At Quarterback you can go for shoot for a realiable veteran like Peyton Manning or Aaron Rodgers or take a shot at a running quarterback like Russell Wilson or Cam Newton.

Tournaments

As you can probably guess, the exact opposite applies to Daily Fantasy Tournament structed contests. These are more aggressive and high stakes contests so you need to match your lineup to that attitude. Scoring a moderately good point total does not help you at all here since you will just end up losing your entry fee. In tournaments you need to choose volatile, high risk players, and hope that this is their week.

This doesn’t mean abandon your quarterback and choose second string running backs, but you can splurge a little extra on the wide receivers, tight ends, and defense.

A strategy that also proves beneficial in NFL tournaments is to pair your quarterback with his receivers. Quarterback and receiver performances are linked so if you pick the right team, you will cash in twice on each play made by that team. Obviously picking the same team increases your risk, but that is the goal in tournaments, all or nothing.

The last important factor in tournaments is what fantasy gurus refer to as a contrarian strategy. This means you choose a player that is likely looked over by your opponents due to poor performance lately or a tough defensive matchup. If you choose a player like this and they do happen to have a big day, that gives you a significant advantage on the majority of your opponents.

On the contrary, if you have a player that is owned by the majority of your opponents, then even if that player plays great, you’re still on the same level as everyone else. Remember, this is a risky strategy though as if a player’s ownership level is low in a contest, there is likely a reason for that and that player is probably not going to play well this week.

Good for your tournament picks you will need to pick a couple high ownership receivers like Demaryius Thomas, Odell Beckham, or Antonio Brown. Personally, I am staying away from Randall Cobb as he will have the highest ownership of any receiver with Jordy Nelson out. If he has a big game if may hurt you, but if he doesn’t, you’ll have a nice leg up on the competition.

Some receivers who will be lesser sought after may be Alshon Jeffery, Mike Evans, Sammy Watkins, and Steve Smith. At tight end, I am expecting ownership of Gronkowski upwards of 60 percent so steer clear of him (especially with Brady out) and look to Julius Thomas or Jason Witten.

Posted in NFL