The second annual “super” wild-card weekend begins on Saturday, formally kicking off the playoffs in addition to being one of the most exciting parts of the NFL calendar.
Depending on the health of Deebo Samuel, the opening game of the playoffs could feature Pro Bowl wideouts on both sides. The Seattle Seahawks will have the statuesque DK Metcalf leading the way while the San Francisco 49ers have the aforementioned Samuel as well as Brandon Aiyuk. How that tandem performs will depend greatly on rookie quarterback Brock Purdy.
But arguably, the premier wideout showcase comes Sunday. The Miami Dolphins and their superstar tandem of Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle will do battle against the Buffalo Bills and Stefon Diggs. The absence of Tua Tagovailoa looms over the matchup, but the game has enough offensive weaponry for a shootout to occur.
While not quite as exciting, the opening round closes with a matchup that features a handful of talented wideouts. The Dallas Cowboys and CeeDee Lamb will travel east to take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who have Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Julio Jones in the receiving corps.
Injuries to monitor
Evans missed the final regular season game due to an illness but is expected back in the Wild Card round. Teammate Julio Jones has been dealing with injuries for the majority of his time with the Bucs and has a knee issue. Waddle has been practicing in a limited function this week due to an ankle injury. Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins was dealing with an illness similar to Evans and should be able to play.
The Los Angeles Chargers could be without Mike Williams, who is questionable for Saturday night’s game. He didn’t practice at all this week, casting doubt on his availability for the game. Bills wideout Isaiah McKenzie injured his hamstring in practice this week and has limited time to recover in time for his game Sunday.
DFS value plays
When Williams has been sidelined this season, Josh Palmer has played well in relief. He is a solid value play against the Jacksonville Jaguars' defense.
If you’re feeling lucky, you can take a shot at picking the correct New York Giants wide receiver. For me, I think that Darius Slayton sees a reliable target share and should be able to take advantage of the Minnesota Vikings' defense that allows the second-most DFS point to opposing wide receivers.