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Madden Stream Picks: Top DraftKings Fantasy Football DFS Targets, Values for December 28

Zach Thompson gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Monday’s two-game Madden Stream DraftKings slate, which starts at 2:00 p.m. ET.

It’s the final week of 2020, and the DraftKings Dream Stream is ready to wrap up the 2020 Madden Holiday Season with just three games left before a champion is crowned. The Conference Championships are on tap for Monday, starting with the NFC Championship matchup at 2:00 p.m. ET between the New Orleans Saints and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, followed by the AFC Championship at 4:00 p.m. ET between the Baltimore Ravens and the Kansas City Chiefs.

To see how the teams got here and keep up with the latest scores, check out the standings and results, and you can also see who the standout performers have been on the stat leaders page. You’ll also want to keep a close eye on the main Holiday Season page for special offers to celebrate the end of the tournament.

Both these matchups are familiar ones. The Saints and Bucs have met three times in our Madden sims including once earlier in the Madden Holiday Season. New Orleans has gone 2-1 against Tampa Bay after picking up the 24-17 victory in the divisional round.

The Chiefs and Ravens have played twice in these sims, and Kansas City won each meeting convincingly, 35-10 and 21-3. Which two teams can win these familiar matchups and make Tuesday’s final? We’ll find out on Monday afternoon!

As usual, it’s important to remember that each roster is not impacted by COVID-19 opt-outs, injuries, suspensions or illness in these sims and that the highest-rated options have been placed at the top of the depth charts. The roster for each team includes all player movement that occurred prior to Week 1 of this season and uses the Madden 21 ratings from Week 1 of this season.

For more details, you can find the game settings, depth charts, abilities and X-factors for each team in Madden 21 along with the upcoming schedule on the Madden Stream info page. There were a few tweaks to the X-factors and Superstars in the latest December update, so be sure to check the depth charts of each team.

Check out the daily DraftKings Madden Stream contests lobby with paid contests for real cash prizes now available alongside free contests. Each simulation will be played out computer vs. computer via an online Madden Stream using Madden 21. In this format, you can enjoy watching the game stream on the DraftKings YouTube channel, the DK Live app (download here) or right here in this post.

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: Madden Stream $10K Holiday Season Special [$2K to 1st].

Reserve an early seat to Tuesday’s Madden Stream $30K Holiday Season Championship [$10K to 1st] here!

Put your DraftKings daily fantasy football skills to the test against Jim Cramer, his followers and other members of the DraftKings Playbook community! Check out the new Cramer’s Cash Contest and get ready to enter your lineup in a rake-free contest for Week 17.



Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens, $8,200 — Mahomes has been the best QB in these sims with his 99 overall rating, and I think he’s the better option between the two elite plays in the AFC. There’s no denying the ceiling of Lamar Jackson ($8,500), especially on the ground, but Mahomes has been much more consistent and much better in this specific matchup. In his two previous games against Baltimore, Mahomes had 24.04 DKFP and 39.8 DKFP while Jackson struggled to only 16.2 DKFP and 7.56 DKFP against the Chiefs. Kansas City will likely use X-factor superstar Tyrann Mathieu as a spy to slow down Jackson, while the Ravens’ secondary has proven no match for Mahomes. Mahomes threw for 345 yards and three touchdowns on his way to 27.2 DKFP in his most recent sim and has over 20 DKFP in four straight sims with 16 touchdowns just over that span. The Chiefs are expensive and will likely be chalky, but they have proven to be worth the investment in just about every single one of their sims.

Other Option — Lamar Jackson ($8,500)


Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $6,700 — If you’re looking to pay up everywhere else and go with a cheaper option at QB, Brees is the option that makes more sense in the early NFC matchup. Brees had his best game of the Madden Holiday Season with 23.86 DKFP against the Eagles in his most recent sim, totaling 289 passing yards and three touchdowns. He gets a good matchup against the Bucs’ secondary, which has been prone to giving up big plays and big games in these sims. Brees is averaging 17.7 DKFP per sim over his 34 contests in Madden 21 and has been better at home in the dome, which makes sense given his “Indoor Baller” superstar ability. Brees has elite weapons to work with in the passing game, and he’ll look to get them involved while also getting some help from Alvin Kamara ($7,700) to get the Saints to the final.

Other Option — Tom Brady ($5,600)

Running Back


Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $7,700 — Kamara delivered one of the best fantasy performances ever in the real world with his Christmas night dismantling of the Vikings, and he has also been tearing it up in simland since getting an X-factor ability to add to his Superstar traits in the December update from EA Sports. Kamara has over 18 DKFP in six straight sims dating back to before the Madden Holiday Season. He ran for 91 yards and two touchdowns against Tampa Bay in their most recent matchup, totaling 28.5 DKFP. Most of his recent success has been due to more work as a receiver out of the backfield. He has multiple catches in 13 straight sims with five receiving touchdowns to go with his 11 rushing touchdowns during that span. He’s the only truly elite, every-down option in the backfield on these four teams, and he should be ready to deliver another big number in this matchup.

Other Options — Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($5,500)


LeSean McCoy, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints, $4,000 — McCoy is almost always involved to some level for the Bucs in these sims and is a great value play at only $4K. McCoy had a rushing touchdown and 14.0 DKFP in the Bucs’ upset win against the Seahawks. He has at least 4.0 DKFP in each of his five Madden Holiday Season contests with a pair of double-digit performances. He had 6.7 DKFP against the Saints in their divisional meeting and is a solid way to save salary at this spot while still getting some production and freeing salary to pay up for stars like Mahomes, Kamara and the Chiefs’ pass-catchers listed below.

Other Options — Leonard Fournette ($5,000), J.K. Dobbins ($3,700)

Wide Receiver


Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens, $8,000 — Hill has been the best WR in Madden, partnering his 99 speed rating with heavy volume from Mahomes to average 22.4 DKFP per sim. He had a good game with 95 yards and three touchdowns in his first game against the Ravens for 33.5 DKFP, and he did even better in the rematch with 10 catches for 196 yards, two touchdowns and 44.6 DKFP. Hill has posted over 20 DKFP and over 100 yards in four of his five games in the Madden Holiday Season and will look to keep cruising with another big game against Baltimore.

Other Option — Michael Thomas ($6,700)


Emmanuel Sanders, New Orleans Saints vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $5,200 — Sanders has been good out of the slot for the Saints in these sims. He has at least four catches in four straight games in the Madden Holiday Season and has averaged 73 yards per game over that span. He had one of his eight touchdowns in his previous meetings with the Bucs and posted four catches, 40 yards and 8.0 DKFP against them in the divisional round. Sanders has a high ceiling if he gets in space and should get the volume needed to be a good play in the fourth meeting between these teams.

Demarcus Robinson, Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens, $3,900 — While the Chiefs’ big stars have been soaking up most of the volume in the passing game, Robinson has also been regularly involved as the WR3, averaging 2.7 catches for 37.8 yards per sim. He has multiple catches in five straight sims coming into this matchup and had multiple catches in each of his first two games against the Ravens. It doesn’t take much for him to hit value from under $4K, and he has had some big games as part of this high-flying offense.

Other Options — Sammy Watkins ($5,800), Scotty Miller ($3,200)

Tight End


Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens, $6,200 — Kelce has had a couple of down games with back-to-back contests under 10 DKFP. He is still averaging 17.9 DKFP per sim, though, and getting lots of volume with an average of six catches per game for 75.0 yards per sim. Kelce feasted for 22.9 DKFP in the first matchup with the Ravens but only had 3.6 DKFP in the rematch. He is more volatile than Hill and Mahomes but is still the TE with the most consistent upside on this slate and worth paying up for if you can figure out how to slide his salary under your cap, as well.

Other Option — Jared Cook ($4,300)


Rob Gronkowski, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints, $4,100 — Gronk’s high overall rating has resulted in a few big sims, but his involvement has been sporadic at times in the Bucs’ offense. Though, he has been involved in the Madden Holiday Season playoffs, finishing with seven catches for 49 yards and 11.9 DKFP in the Bucs’ upset win in Green Bay, followed by six catches for 85 yards and 14.5 DKFP in their win in Seattle. The Bucs’ formula for success has been to play defense and control the ball with short passes, which has meant more work for Gronk. If he keeps getting volume, he’ll be a solid value at barely over $4K.


Chiefs DST vs. Baltimore Ravens, $2,800 — In their most recent game against the Ravens, Kansas City only allowed three points and finished with 10 DKFP after posting 7.0 DKFP against Baltimore the first time around. The Chiefs’ defense has been rolling in the Madden Holiday Season, as well, and they now have multiple sacks in nine straight games dating back to before the season began. They have at least 9.0 DKFP in three of their past five games and should be able to slow down Jackson like they did last time around using Mathieu as their QB spy.

Other Options — Saints DST ($3,000), Ravens DST ($2,600)

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: Madden Stream $10K Holiday Season Special [$2K to 1st] and your FREE lineups here: Madden Stream $500 FREE Contest.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) 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.