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Best lineup strategy for Panthers vs. Browns Madden simulation Showdown

Christian McCaffrey hasn’t been a consistent player in Madden streams so far, but could be due for a big game in Friday’s Panthers-Browns matchup.

Christian McCaffrey of the Carolina Panthers runs a play during the game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium on December 9, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

The Carolina Panthers and Cleveland Browns will face off in a Madden sim Friday at 4:00 p.m. ET. We break down the ideal Showdown lineup strategy for the DFS contest. You can set your lineup and play at DraftKings.

Captain’s Picks

Christian McCaffrey, RB, Panthers ($15,300)

We’re living in a simulated world where captaining Christian McCaffrey might be a contrarian play. He hasn’t performed like the best running back in the game, but I think he’s about due for a monster performance. Cam Newton hasn’t showcased much upside as a passer or runner and will have one of the game’s best pass rushers in Myles Garrett coming after him. McCaffrey might kill your lineup if he doesn’t crush it, but I think he’s worth the risk in this one.

Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Browns ($14,700)

Beckham’s 99 spectacular catch rating is all too relevant. We saw him catch a 77-yard touchdown on the first play of his last sim before being iced out for the remainder of the contest but remains one of the most productive wideouts. He has the speed (94) to break away from defenders, agility (98) to make defenders miss, and jumping (96) to win the ball in the air.

FLEX Men

Kareem Hunt, RB, Browns ($3,000)

Nick Chubb has been solid as of late, but he’ll the fumble forcing machine Luke Kuechly in this one. The Panthers have consistently fielded one of the higher scoring defenses in sim matchups, and a lot of that comes from their ability to force turnovers. Lack of success of the ground means more passing, which would give Hunt more reps.

Curtis Samuel, WR, Panthers ($5,400)

Samuel is the fastest skill player in the game and Carolina’s most productive receiver. He might not have a superstar trait like D.J. Moore, but has identical acceleration (93) and agility (92). Why pay up for Moore when you can get the same player for cheaper?