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Previewing Emmanuel Sanders for Super Bowl DFS

Emmanuel Sanders hasn’t had a strong statistical game since Week 13, but a Super Bowl shootout could get him right back in the thick of things. We break down his performance to date, his DraftKings and FanDuel salaries, and what to expect for Super Bowl 54.

Emmanuel Sanders #17 of the San Francisco 49ers looks on prior to taking on the Seattle Seahawks during their game at CenturyLink Field on December 29, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

The Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers square off in Super Bowl 54 on Sunday, February 2nd. We’ll be breaking down everything you need to know to prepare your daily fantasy football lineups for the big game. We’re starting with a player-by-player preview for the skill position players on the two teams.

Emmanuel Sanders spent his first four years with the Steelers, then moved on to the Broncos five and a half season and now has played 12 games with the 49ers including the playoffs. He saw his greatest productivity in the “Manning years,” surpassing 1,000 yards from 2014 to 2016. The extreme dip in quarterback play after Manning retired and injuries killed Sanders’ numbers.

DFS Super Bowl price

DraftKings Captain: $7,800
DraftKings Flex: $5,200
FanDuel: $7,500

DFS opponent position ranking

DraftKings: 5th
FanDuel: 2nd

Season performance

After Week 7 of this season, Sanders was traded to the wide receiver deficient 49ers and quickly paid dividends with 14 receptions for 137 yards and two touchdowns in his first two games, but in his next 10 games, he only had one game over 61 receiving yards and one game with a touchdown, both coming against the Saints in their 48-46 shootout.

Sanders did suffer a ribs injury in Week 10 that seemed to linger for a month until he broke out again in New Orleans Week 14. The good news is that he appears to be healthy but the bad news is that getting targets in the 49ers offense isn’t easy.

Over the last month of the season, Sanders was second in targets with 23, while George Kittle led with 40 and Deebo Samuel was third with 22.

Playoff performance

So far, the playoff 49ers have not given their passing game much to do through two games. Jimmy Garoppolo has thrown the ball a total of 26 times, completing 17 of those, with three targets going to Sanders, two of which he caught for 33 yards in two games.

Deebo Samuel leads the team in playoff targets with nine, then Kendrick Bourne has six and George Kittle has six to lead the team over the last two games.

Matchup

The Chiefs have been good against wide receivers this season, allowing just two to top 100 yards in 18 games. Overall, they’ve allowed the second-fewest DraftKings points to the position. Football Outsiders also has them ranked sixth-best in DVOA against the pass. They are a good pass defense without question, but they aren’t impenetrable. DeShaun Watson had little trouble throwing against them and Ryan Tannehill had a decent game last week statistically. But, on average, wide receivers are going to have to really work to get over this pass defense.

DFS pricing and analysis

Sanders is priced a little higher than I’d expect on both DraftKings and FanDuel, but it does go with his upside in a shootout, which is a real possibility with Andy Reid and Kyle Shanahan matching wits. If the game does become pass heavy for the 49ers, Sanders is a prime target for a 49ers stack, along with Deebo Samuel and George Kittle.