We’re all in need of some entertainment during these times of the unknown. DraftKings is doing its part by offering Madden simulations with a variety of teams going at it. For this piece, we’ll focus on the Patriots vs. 49ers game, which starts at 10:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, July 14th.
Note: All salaries will be Flex prices unless noted as Captain’s Pick prices.
New England Patriots
When we think of some of the better quarterbacks in these simulations, Tom Brady ($11,000) may not immediately come to mind, but he should. The ageless wonder is averaging a game-high 18.8 DKFP with 249 passing yards and 72 touchdowns thrown. He’s essentially a lock for double-digit fantasy points, as he’s only been under that mark in three of his 34 games. It’s quite remarkable for someone who solely relies on his arm, as he’s rushed for -11 yards on the sim season.
His go-to receiver continues to be the TE1 in Ben Watson ($7,400), who continues to be extremely underpriced. Watson is averaging 5.2 receptions and 66 receiving yards but only has 12 touchdowns scored. The lack of scoring is underwhelming, but Watson rarely disappoints. His 14.6 DKFP average is the best among the Pats receivers, followed by Julian Edelman ($9,600) at 13.6. Edelman, who is listed as the WR1, is seeing 4.6 receptions of his own with 51.3 yards and 20 touchdowns. Brady has done an excellent job at spreading the ball around, so you’ll likely be looking to take multiple receivers in this offense. Mohamed Sanu ($5,600) isn’t seeing the volume that Edelman is but his 20 touchdowns is on the same level. Thus, he makes for an excellent mid-tier option despite averaging 3.7 receptions and 53.7 yards per game. Phillip Dorsett ($4,600) has the speed to break off some mega catches but they’re few and far between. Dorsett is averaging just 2.7 receptions, but an impressive 49 yards on those catches with 12 touchdowns scored. If you need to save some salary, he’s one of the better options to do it with.
The Pats continue to run James White ($8,000) on almost every carry and he’s also contributing in the passing game. Overall, he’s averaging 85.3 scrimmage yards per game with 16 touchdowns scored. 12 of those he’s run in while four have come through the air. The fact that he’s only $8K makes him a fantastic option, as he’s one of the cheaper RB1 that actually contributes in both facets of the game.
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San Francisco 49ers
On paper, this is a classic teacher vs. student matchup. Unfortunately, the Madden simulation won’t care. Regardless, Jimmy Garoppolo ($10,600) is the second-most expensive player in this game and is $400 less than Brady. He’s not nearly seeing the same success as Brady, averaging 247 passing yards with 57 touchdowns thrown and 17 DKFP. While both sides have some good coverage in their secondaries, Garoppolo certainly feels like the riskier play despite the salary discount.
Emmanuel Sanders ($10,000) is also another player I’m not crazy about simply because of his salary. I’m not really understanding why he’s priced at $10K when he’s averaging 3.9 receptions, 57.2 yards and 15 touchdowns scored. To be quite fair, you can get almost identical production from Sanu on the Patriots at half the cost. For me, Sanders can be left on the board and I’d instead pay up for the Pats. George Kittle ($8,400) is someone I’d be looking to spend a high salary on over Sanders. He’s averaging 5.1 receptions, 73.4 yards and 11 touchdowns scored. It’s similar numbers to Watson and both of the TE1 in this game are strong captain considerations. Deebo Samuel ($6,800) will have some of the lighter coverage in this game but he’s been a tough one to figure out. He could easily be $1,000 less in salary, averaging 3.4 receptions, 54.4 yards and 12 touchdowns scored. His price doesn’t completely get me off him but he’s a fringe play at best. I could take Samuel or go down the list to Kendrick Bourne ($3,200), who has scored 14 times. Bourne is not a volume king by any means with 2.7 receptions per game but his scoring keeps him in the conversation.
The 49ers player I would be locking in almost immediately is Tevin Coleman ($9,000). Like White, Coleman is simply underpriced for how involved he is in this offense. He’s coming closer and closer to averaging 100 scrimmage yards per game, as he’s currently at 96.6. He’s also scored 28 times, doing so 25 times on the ground and three through the air. While the Pats’ run defense was good, Coleman plays on a completely different level in these sims.
As I mentioned, I Iove using either of the tight ends in the captain spot because of the volume they receive. Both George Kittle ($12,600) and Ben Watson ($11,100) average over five receptions per game but aren’t even included in the top five most expensive players to roster. I expect the ownership to be high on both, so you could also consider either of the running backs at captain, with Tevin Coleman ($13,500) or James White ($12,000).
Final Score: Patriots 27 49ers 23
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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.