The NFL may only have a few weeks remaining in the regular season, but that hasn’t stopped DraftKings from introducing a new format! Snake Draft Showdown is now open and ready for you to dive into, with a classic slate set for Week 15’s games on Sunday.
If you’ve ever played season-long fantasy before, you’re likely familiar with how a Snake Draft works. In short, for these Classic contests, once the allotted number of entries are filled in a contest, the draft will begin one minute later. The entrants are assigned a random draft order and will commence in that order. The player with the first pick gets dibs on everyone while the player with the last pick will get a double pick, as it’ll end the first round and thus begin the second.
Roster requirements for lineups: QB - 1 RB - 1 WR/TE - 2 FLEX - 2
For a full breakdown of rules, please visit our How to Play Classic and Showdown NFL Snake Draft page.
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Favorable Early Round Matchup
Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans
Snake Classic Rank: 1st
This is going to be an extremely popular week for running backs and Henry as the top back is justified. He’s going up against one of the worst run defenses in the league, as the Lions have allowed an average of 31.4 DKFP, 112 rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns to the position. Henry is coming off a matchup against the Jaguars, who also are one of the league’s worst run defenses, snapping off 215 yards on 26 carries and two touchdowns. The Lions are ranked as one of the worst tackling teams in the league and now have to combat a running back who is averaging 3.78 yards after contact per attempt, which is the highest in the league. Henry is also tied for first for rushes of at least 10 yards at 37, which is in the same company as Dalvin Cook (Rank: 2).
Calvin Ridley, WR, Atlanta Falcons
Snake Classic Rank: 5th
With Julio Jones already ruled out this week, it’ll be another week of heavy targets for Ridley. This will be the fourth game this season where Ridley is active with Jones out, leading to him averaging 31.1% of the targets, which is a solid bump up from his 22.4% overall. Then we add in a great matchup against the crumbling Buccaneers secondary, which has allowed 300-plus receiving yards to opposing receivers in two of the past three games. In coverage, Ridley will draw CB Carlton Davis, who has been targeted against 88 times, allowing 53 receptions (60.2% catch rate) for an average of 13.7 YPR and five touchdowns allowed. As a likely second-round pick, Ridley should smash in this game.
Early Round Matchup To Avoid
D.K. Metcalf, WR, Seattle Seahawks
Snake Classic Rank: 4th
Metcalf is never someone I want to go out of my way to avoid. He’s essentially matchup proof and it’s a big reason why he’s averaging 20.1 DKFP on the season. With that in mind, this is one of the toughest matchups he’ll endure against a very, very good Washington Football Team secondary. Metcalf should see a healthy dose of CB Kendall Fuller, who has been targeted against 55 times, allowing 32 receptions (58.2% catch rate) and 13.1 YPR. Metcalf DOES have a big size advantage on Fuller, so that’s worth noting. What really has me hung up is one of the best pass rushes in the league coming from Washington, putting Russell Wilson (Rank: 14) under plenty of pressure. Wilson has been under pressure on 38% of his dropbacks, which has helped lead to 12 interceptions, one shy of his career-high.
Late Round Fliers
It should be noted that these players are ranked below the threshold of players that would be drafted. This section simply tries to exploit players who are in favorable matchups and are down the rank list.
Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans
Snake Classic Rank: 29th
Henry is getting plenty of love and rightfully so. However, this is also an excellent spot for Tannehill against a very poor Lions secondary. We just recently saw Tannehill carve up a bad Browns secondary, throwing for 389 yards and three touchdowns while scoring 31.5 DKFP. The Lions won’t offer much pressure on him either, which has led Tannehill to post an 80% adjusted completion percentage, 19 of his 28 touchdowns thrown and 9.1 yards per pass attempt. If you miss out on Henry and still want a piece of this game, I think Tannehill in the later rounds is worth a look.
Brandon Aiyuk, San Francisco 49ers
Snake Classic Rank: 36th
As George Kittle and Deebo Samuel continue to be sidelined, Aiyuk has really emerged as the top target in this Niners offense. He’s seen a total of 25 targets over the past two weeks, leading to 15 receptions for 214 yards and a touchdown. His 36.4% target share was more than double of Kendrick Bourne (Rank: 137), who was second on the team at 16%. Aiyuk should continue to lead the team in targets and a favorable matchup against the Cowboys, specifically CB Rashard Robinson, will put him in a great spot to produce.
Leonard Fournette, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Snake Classic Rank: 112th
Ronald Jones will not be taking the field in Week 15, which means Fournette, who was a healthy scratch in Week 14, will presumably take the lead role. If that actually comes to fruition is anyone's guess, but at least from where he’s ranked, he’s an immense value in the final round. Fournette has been the pass-catching option when he’s active, averaging 4.1 targets per game and 6.1 YPR. The Falcons have been very generous to opposing running backs so at least on paper, this is a favorable spot for Fournette. If you want to take a flier on a player who is SUPPOSED to be in the lead role, Fournette fits the bill.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is steveazors) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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