The XFL season is upon us and that means it is time to play some DFS. Finding good information about the XFL is tough and a lot of the information is guesswork, especially for Week 1. But, that means that many DFS players are in the same boat and maybe you can take advantage of the lack of information.
For Week 1 I will look to go with running backs in the flex position of 50/50s, head-toheads, and double-ups, as we should have a better chance of rostering RBs who get touches versus wide receivers. There are a lot of wide receivers who could end up leading their team in targets that come out of the blue. In Showdowns, I’ll likely go with D/STs and RBs over the more volatile WRs as well. But this is just for Week 1. As soon as we get good data on what receivers are getting the bulk of the snaps and targets, receivers will be the higher scoring position and easier to predict. And if you are playing in GPPs this weekend, it will be worth going for receivers over running backs with their higher ceilings.
Ben DiNucci, Sea Dragons, $9,800
DiNucci is probably similar in ability to many of XFL’s quarterbacks, but we can feel certain that he won’t split time with another quarterback and will throw a bunch under June Jones’ system. He also has Josh Gordon to throw to, which is a good thing. I like the Defenders defense, but we don’t need DiNucci to be Patrick Mahomes to be the best fantasy QB of the week.
Drew Plitt, Arlington Renegades, $7,300
Plitt is the least expensive quarterback option who is currently slated to start in Week 1. Kyle Sloter could end up seeing some action as well, so this pick isn’t a lock. The good news is that Arlington is going to pass a whole lot and Plitt is apparently the starter. If he can be successful early on, he should be able to stay on the field and put up fantasy points.
Other Options — Jordan Ta’amu, Defenders; Brandon Silvers, Roughnecks
Abram Smith, D.C. Defenders, $7,900
All signs point to the Defenders being run-centric under head coach Reggie Barlow, which is probably why they took Smith with their first pick. He was a strong between the tackles runner at Baylor and could be one of the few backs in the XFL who will average 15-20 carries a game. And for XFL DFS, running backs are the safest plays in flex positions, as wide receiver targets are going to be extremely difficult to project for Week 1.
Max Borghi, Roughnecks, $4,500
Borghi is listed as the Roughnecks starting running back and while at Washington St. he was a pass-catching specialist, catching 156 passes for 1,134 yards and nine touchdowns in his career, including a season with 86 receptions. The Roughnecks will be a pass-first offense and it’s hard not seeing Borghi giving us value at his current price point.
Other Options — Adrian Killins, Renegades; Jah-Maine Martin, Guardians; Jacques Patrick, Brahmas
Wide receiver/Tight End
Josh Gordon, Sea Dragons, $9,000
I’m usually going to fade the well known names since they’ll likely see have big roster percentages, but I’ll make an exception for Gordon in this June Jones offense. Despite being at the tail end of his career, we know his talent level and that he has still been able to make NFL teams over the last two seasons. Plus, fitting players under the salary cap isn’t going to be that tough in Week 1.
Jordan Smallwood, Renegades, $5,400
Smallwood rejoins his college coach Bob Stoops in an offense that will be pass oriented and appears to be in line for a big role, with an article on the XFL site calling him the #1 wide receiver. We can’t take that as gospel, but we know this team is going to pass the ball a lot and Smallwood is a starter who played well in the XFL in 2020 and who Stoops likes.
Other Options — Geronimo Allison, Vipers; Darrius Shepherd, Battlehawks
Houston Roughnecks, $3,000
I’m going to say it, D/STs are a crap shoot in the best of times, but in Week 1 of the XFL, they are even more difficult to handicap. The good news for the Roughnecks is that they have defensive guru Wade Phillips as head coach and they face possibly the worst team in the XFL, the Orlando Guardians. The Roughnecks are also the least expensive choice. It would make sense for them to be the most heavily rostered D/ST on the main slate, so fading them can also make sense due to the volatility of defenses and the lack of good quarterbacks across the board.