Welcome to the 2019 version of The Ambush, as I will walk you through a weekly article covering the NFL DFS Landscape for the Main slate each week. This article is not only intended to help YOU the reader out with your NFL DFS enjoyment for the week, but it’s also my Bible that I will rely upon each week to do my lineups, contest selection, bets, GIFs, angry twitter rants or whatever else I need for that given weekend of NFL action. You can expect this article to come out on Saturday’s as Friday nights are my grind time (… no, not that kind of grinding, cmon people …) to get this article done and ready for the weekend. I’m a big CFB player so Saturday’s are reserved for watching college football (or doing actual life stuff), but I will then come back to my article on Saturday night and make sure all my lineups and entries are set before eventually going to bed for the evening. You can expect me to not want to change a single thing on Sunday’s and I’ll likely not even want to answer any questions you have on Sunday’s.
If you want the best time to get your lineups done, it should be Saturday night’s when you are reading this article.
Here’s a recap of what this article covers
- This article will cover plays that I am using on my MAIN lineup & what that is being entered into.
- This article will cover plays that I am using on my SECOND tier lineups & what contests those are being entered into.
- This article will cover plays that I am using on my THIRD tier lineups & what contests those are being entered into.
- This article will cover my favorite weekly BETS for the weekend games.
- This article will cover who I feel is chalk and how it should be addressed.
- This article will cover all my NFL thoughts in one spot.
What are The Ambush plays? These are my plays that I feel warrant the most attention for a given week. It’s a mix of three types of players/teams each week. We’ll cover the stud you gotta have no matter what. We’ll cover the contrarian pivots. We’ll cover my favorite games/stacks of the week.
The first thing we must do each Week is understand the landscape of the slate and any injury or weather or miscellaneous information that we need to monitor from the time this article comes out (Saturday’s) until lock on Sunday at 1PM EST.
WEEK SIX OVERVIEW
There are two games this weekend likely to draw the most attention and they are the two games with over/under’s that are north of 50. The Houston Texans, who themselves scored 50 points last week travel to take on the Kansas City Chiefs in Arrowhead Stadium where the Chiefs are looking to avoid back to back home losses for the first time since 2015. There’s also strong reason in my mind that the Texans won’t put up a ton of points off their 50-burger last week as history has shown to us. But a full fade on that game would be asking for a ton given the Quarterbacks and offenses involved. The other game features the Atlanta Falcons (who the Texans hung the 50 on) and the Arizona Cardinals, two of the worst defenses in the league and two fast paced offenses as well — squaring off in Arizona on the 4PM set of games.
Because of these spots you’ll find tons of lineups going with the game stack route for these games expecting one of them to jump over 60 total points, which is obviously a logical play given the teams involved but in DFS what it really offers is that there are OTHER games which can be stacked at < 5% ownership. For those who like the ownership angle and like to game stack/correlate then this is your week to fade the HOU-KC and ATL-ARI games from a “heavy” perspective and stack other spots and then fill in with them.
Remember that in the NFL teams will adjust heavily one week to the next. Try to block out of your mind that Houston scored 50+ on Atlanta and conversely that Atlanta gave up 50+ points last week on the road to a really good Texans offense. That doesn’t mean Arizona is dropping 50 this week, just like the Chiefs aren’t gonna be held below 20 every single week at home. Teams will make adjustments and we shouldn’t be looking at last weeks results as an indicator this week. That’s the common mistake folks make when they use reactive stats and try to make them predictive stats.
“The Data says” …. The data says you are a moron most of the time. What data are you looking at? Air Yards?
Lock in off your got and go from there and you will be a consistent NFL DFS player.
Projected Ownership (Mixed Between Sites)
|HIGHEST OWNED||Patty Mahomes||Lev Bell
|Austin Hooper||Ravens Def||Chiefs, Falcons|
|SECOND TIER OWNERSHIP||DeShaun Watson
|Travis Kelce||None||Texans, Cardinals|
All ownership projections are based upon single entry and 5 entry max tournaments.
Theres a ton of contests out there for you to be focusing on rather than just playing what the sites are forcing you to play. A couple things you should be looking for each week are as follows
- Tournaments with less than 1k users in them … I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH THIS WEEK. FACTOR OWNERSHIP IN HERE!
- Tournaments with less than 300 users in them
- Tournaments that pay 10x to first not 50x to first
- Higher paylines (% of people who get paid)
- How much does 10th place get? 20th place?
Focus on not first place but below that. Make sure you are playing a tournament that is one you can win in and will not have a ton of tilt by entering a lineup and having to worry about every single person who scores on the slate. You’ll find that in the long run any tournament that only pays 10x to first is one you will profit in.
THE AMBUSH PLAYS
Welcome to the game of the week that nobody is gonna see coming. The Browns looked atrocious last Monday night (once again looking below AVG in a prime time game) and now they come back home where they haven’t played well all season. Mayfield and Wilson both should be the featured attacks in this game which I see being won through the air rather than on the ground. The Browns have been overhyped all season long but the last time we saw them going into a rough spot off a bad prime time loss they dropped 40 points. The talent is there and the Seahawks passing defense is the spot to attack this week fo rme and that funnels back to Mayfield + Beckham + Landry to shine this week for the Browns. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Callaway get invnolved as well which makes Mayfield a nice sneaky QB play in week 6.
AMBUSH PLAY #1: Mayfield and friends.
KELCE PAYS OFF
Travis Kelce was easily the #1 TE coming into the season but he has yet to have that “Kelce” week in DFS. This week is the no doubter spot where he shines in a spot where everyone may rank him among the top TE plays on the DFS slate but nobody uses him. The Texans coming into this season were an easy target for opposing TE but quietly have done okay vs TE due to a favorable schedule and some pretty generous variance. With Kelce being at home and being in a MUST WIN spot for the Chiefs he sets up to easily get over 100 yards receiving and a touchdown for the Chiefs. Lock him in as your top TE and take the #1 player at the position this week.
AMBUSH PLAY #2: Travis Kelce shines and Austin Hooper is just blah as chalk.
BECKHAM + WOODS + LOCKETT UP
My trio of receivers this weekend on DraftKings?? These guys. Odell Beckham Jr, Robert Woods, Tyler Lockett. Before you rip into me on Odell Beckham Jr, you should know that I am the guy who is not a big fan of Beckham because he’s a complete headcase and I am the person who honestly said back in July that Taysom Hill scores more touchdowns than Odell Beckham. Okay, so maybe that was a homerism play but we are 5 weeks through the season and ……………… yeah, they’re tied. But that’ll change this weekend because Beckham is scoring twice to take a 3-2 lead on Hill (see what I did there?) in a spot when nobody will touch him off a disaster on MNF but it’s legit one of the best match-ups on the slate and Baker will pick apart the Seahawks shitty secondary getting Beckham his before he completely implodes in a couple of weeks. Coming off the Richard Sherman trash talking from this week expect the Browns to light up his former team.
The others are the easy squares in my mind. Robert Woods in a game where Gurley is limited but they will need to put up 30 points most likely against an up and coming San Francisco team. Get Woods the ball as much as you can with Cooks and Gurley banged up. The great thing about Bobby Tree’s is that they will even get him the ball in the running game on end-arounds, especially down near the goal line and you have to think the 49ers will do everything they can to contain Cooper Kupp as best possible which opens things up for Woods even more. A high volume game and a spot where the Rams come in off two losses and 10 days rest is a money spot for them to regain control of the NFC West this week. Look for Woods to get 7+ catches, over 100 yards from scrimmage and a score.
Tyler Lockett is one of the two receivers for the Seahawks that we can consistently target every week when we love Wilson and in a game that I love for points how do we not love Wilson and his 1-2 punch of Lockett and Metcalf. But with the full PPR upside on DK, Tyler Lockett on the road this week is the top Seahawk in terms of raw points. While I wouldn’t be shocked to see Metcalf get in the box I gotta put Lockett on the main lineup because he’s been an elite WR so far this season and continues to be Russ’ go to guy when he needs that big play. Lockett up…
AMBUSH PLAY #3: OBJ / Woods / Lockett DK WR Trio
VEGAS TOTALS ARE FOR THE LOSERS
Stop…. Collaborate and listen…
Oh wait… Wrong article there. Anyways. Listen up to me folks. Go back to the Saturday college footbal games and look up the over/unders on some games. Check out the Oklahoma/Texas over/under compared to the Washington State/Arizona State total. And then check which game was better for DFS?
That’s what we are looking at this weekend with the Houston-Kansas City and Atlanta-Arizona games being the donkey chalk games due to their high vegas totals and in reality the winning plays are going to come from having a core focused on another game with maybe a one off here or there from those specific games. I want your CORE GPP lineup this week to be based upon a game that has no reference to Chiefs, Texans, Falcons or Cardinals in it and that is going to win you all the money. This doesn’t mean we should expect those games to end 6-3 but likely that the offensive production from them comes from unexpected sources or one specific source (i.e. Kelce / Julio) and the optimal DFS lineup is not going to feature a full game stack from there. If you want to win it all, these are the game stack to look at.
- Seattle vs Cleveland … Passing attack.
- Dallas vs NY Jets …. Both RB and the Jets passing game is contrarian.
- San Francisco vs LA Rams … Rams passing game and 49ers ground game + Kittle
AMBUSH PLAY #4: Dont stack the chalk. Stack another game.
FULL AMBUSH RANKINGS
QB as usual is not a spot that should require too much attention for you, in the end they’ll all finish in the same range, but this is a spot to definitely correlate if you believe a game is going to shootout.
- Patrick Mahomes … Will finish as the #1 QB again but is overpriced on FD.
- Baker Mayfield … The player of the week that makes or breaks everything for me.
- Russell Wilson … Gotta project RW over Mayfield if we are being honest. Takes balls to play Mayfield over RW, but then it takes balls to win $
- Matt Ryan … Throwing for 300+ every game because his rushing game and defense sucks. Good match-up again this week
This is a week where I can see wanting to get VERY creative at this position and potentially opening up TOUT’S box of too many options at one position and you’ll probably see lots of recommendations that go about 10 or 12 deep at running back and on a 10 game slate, I’m not really sure how that helps you out. Here’s my core 5 plays that I like the most and one thing of note is that none of them are punts or deep value spots because I rarely try to do that at Running Back outside of someone like Carlos Hyde last week who paid off at his price on DK.
TIER ONE BACKS
- Mark Ingram II: Could be the highest owned RB on the slate. Home favorite vs a bad rush D.
- Derrick Henry: Has a very good match-up vs Denver off their first win. Tennessee is so up and down but we get them in an UP week.
- LeVeon Bell: Bell’s volume hasn’t been a big issue and now with Darnold coming back we might finally get to see the potential he can have with the Jets this year. To me this is their Super Bowl and they are the sneaky upset of the week. If that happens, it’s LevBell scoring twice and breaking the slate at RB.
TIER TWO BACKS
- LaTavius Murray: Everyone will say it, but nobody will have the balls to play it. Murray should still come in around 2% owned on DraftKings this week at his low $3700 price and that is even with a “FAKE NEWS” injury designation on AK41 that popped up late in the week. Lets first cover the match-up. Its fricken amazing. The Jaguars rank near the bottom of the league in all the normal and advanced analytical stats in terms of rushing defense. Second, the Saints are setup to use their running game a ton on the road and third they have had plenty of narrative the past couple of weeks about getting Murray involved more in the offense and his lack of involvement being solely due to poor game scripts (which is total BS). Murray is likely to be featured in a game where we should see the defenses dictate the game and the Saints rely heavily on the ground game. For $3700 you are basically getting an RB1 who is gonna get 12 touches minimum. Lock him in on DK.
- Zeke Elliott: Dak just isn’t throwing to him, which KILLS his stance as an ELITE PPR running back. Monitor that closely this week but all in all, you gotta expect Zeke to get fed at some point.
- Dalvin Cook: DK play where getting the full PPR for his 6 catches is HUUGE.
This is where the money is really won this week. You need one of the ELITE tier guys and I would prefer two of them on DK.
- DeAndre Hopkins … Duh
- Robert Woods … My favorite WR this week to “get his”, probably wont end as the #1 overall scoring WR, but for his price you’ll be VERY pleased with his results.
- Odell Beckham Jr & Tyler Lockett … I’ll play Beckham & Lockett or some form of Beckham, Landry, Lockett, Metcalf together only. Meaning that if I have one player from this game I will have two.
- Amari Cooper
- Julio Jones
- Stefon Diggs: Want a lock TD? Here’s your guy.
OTHERS TO CONSIDER
- Jarvis Landry
- Larry Fitzgerald
- Antonio Callaway
- DK Metcalf
It’s Kelce or the rest this week and with Hoopers chalk rising and his price rising he is the good DFS fade play of the week even though it’s Austin Hooper in a Dome on a Sunday. But then it’s Austin Hooper in a Dome on a Sunday at 4pm and not at 1PM and everyone knows that ends up being a dud.
Zach Ertz is the TE to not forget about this week. Something tells me someone (me) is winning a million dollars this week with Ertz & Kelce.
- Travis Kelce
- Austin Hooper
- Zachary Ertz
- Baltimore Ravens … I don’t believe in them long term but this really feels like a spot they score.
- New Orleans Saints … Jags giving up a ton of sacks and the Saints D-Line is deep and on a roll. Lots of sacks can be had here. Suck it PJ Williams haters. He gets a pick 6.
- Tennessee Titans … Good spot for them in Denver against the Flacco-INT machine.
BULL SHIT RANDOM TD CALL
- Atlanta Falcons … Not a leverage play, I honestly like them to play better this week (for a spot) against Kyler and score a DEF TD, only to come back in Week 7 and give up 8000 points and then get Dan Quinn Fired….