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Madden Stream Picks: Rams vs. Packers DraftKings DFS Showdown Strategy

Garion Thorne preps you for Friday’s 8:00 p.m. ET Madden Stream contest between the Rams and Packers with game-script analysis and Captain’s Picks.

Divisional Round - Seattle Seahawks v Green Bay Packers Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

We’re all in need of some entertainment during these times of the unknown. DraftKings is doing their part by offering Madden simulations with a variety of teams going at it. For this piece, we’ll focus on the Rams vs. Packers matchup, which will take place at 8:00 p.m. ET on Friday, July 31.

Set your DraftKings lineups here: Madden Stream $4K Showdown Special [$1K to 1st] (LAR vs GB)


Note: All salaries will be Flex prices unless noted as Captain’s Pick prices


SHOWDOWN STRATEGY

Los Angeles Rams

At this point - 40 simulations into the Madden “season” - I just don’t trust Jared Goff ($10,400) against a formidable opponent. There’s simply too long a track record of mediocrity. Yes, Goff was able to post a huge four-touchdown performance against Kansas City recently; but I’ll chalk that up to the unique circumstances of a stream involving the Chiefs. One team always ends up scoring at least 30 points. Sometimes both. Aside from that one game, what exactly am I supposed to be impressed by? Goff’s only managed to exceed the modest output of 16.0 DKFP twice in his past 18 starts, a span where the QB has racked up just 23 total touchdown passes. His ceiling is so low and that’s not what you should be looking for in an asset priced above $10K.

In fact, spending anything close to $10K on a slate featuring the Rams in a massive decision. Unlike most teams that roster a third-down running back or a cheap WR3 in these simulations, Los Angeles’ production is pretty concentrated on expensive pieces. Not counting Greg Zuerlein ($3,800), every asset on the team averaging at least 5.0 DKFP per stream is priced above $6K. It’s why you’re likely going to see a heavy amount of ownership gravitating towards Tyler Higbee ($7,200) and Brandin Cooks ($6,800), as the duo are the closest thing we have to a “value” play on this side of the ledger. Still, I’ll be investing in Robert Woods ($8,000). The USC product comes into this matchup with the Packers leading the Rams in receptions (177), receiving yards (2,415) and receiving touchdowns (19). Woods is also averaging 19.3 DKFP across his last six appearances, if recency bias means anything to you in these contests. Cooper Kupp ($8,800) is also interesting due to his propensity to go overlooked in this format. However, with Kupp’s salary having dropped below $9K, I’m not sure if he’ll be as much of a variance option as he was three weeks ago.

The safest asset on Los Angeles remains Todd Gurley ($9,400). Though the RB has failed to reach the 100-yard rushing bonus in 37 of the Rams’ 40 simulations, Gurley’s versatility makes up for some of his shortcomings. The Georgia product has managed to catch at least three passes in 55.0% of his virtual starts, while his 23 total touchdowns lead all skill-position players on Los Angeles’ depth chart. Again, Gurley’s underwhelming volume in terms of raw rushing yards does keep him from being comparable to someone like Ezekiel Elliott when it comes to upside; yet, at the same time, he’s consistent. Gurley’s scored double-digit DKFP in 62.5% of the Rams’ games and he’s basically a lock for a FLEX slot in most builds this evening.


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Green Bay Packers

You probably could have guessed this from reading the first line of this article, but the decision between Aaron Rodgers ($10,800) and the aforementioned Goff is an easy one. Though the former MVP has had his own struggles within these streams, Rodgers’ high-end ability still tends to shine through more often than not. Consider that the pivot has exceeded 19.0 DKFP in 18 of Green Bay’s 40 simulations, a ratio that’s only improved in recent matchups. To wit, Rodgers has reached the 300-yard bonus twice in his past three appearances, a stretch that culminated with a 30.5 DKFP outburst against Tennessee. Also, if you’re the kind of person who’s wondering what Rodgers was able to accomplish the last time he had to face this talented Los Angeles defense, the QB tossed a pair of TDs and ran for another in one of his best DFS performances to date. You’re going to want to have some exposure.

Another positive aspect of Rodgers is that stacking around him is a pretty easy process. Davante Adams ($11,200) and Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($6,400) are clearly the No. 1 and No. 2 receiving options on Green Bay’s roster. In fact, when it comes to touchdown production, it’s not even close. Of the 71 touchdowns Rodgers has thrown in these streams, Adams and Valdes-Scantling have combined to haul in a whopping 60.6% of them, with the former having caught an eye-popping 27 all by his lonesome. Obviously, that number is incredible enough on its own, but Adams’ greatness really starts to sink in when you consider that Jimmy Graham ($5,200) and Geronimo Allison ($4,800) have each only registered seven receiving scores in 40 contests. Strangely enough, it’s actually Allen Lazard ($2,600) that ranks third on the team in receiving TDs with 10. Yes, Lazard’s also more likely than most to finish this matchup with a big goose egg in the catches column, but his low-end salary could be crucial in constructing a lineup on a slate with so little bargain basement value. At least the wideout has a bit of upside.

Finally, we’ve arrived at Aaron Jones ($5,800). I’ll say this in a positive sense about the RB: At least doesn’t cost $9K anymore. Still, when the most optimistic thing you can muster about an asset is that he’s not too expensive, you sort of have a problem. Simply put, Jones is maybe the most touchdown-or-bust player I’ve seen in these Madden streams. With Jamaal Williams ($3,200) pilfering most of the pass-catching work, Jones either finds the end zone or he’s an afterthought. Seriously. The past 10 times that the back has failed to score, he’s averaging an embarrassing 2.5 DKFP. I might have been able to consider Jones as a differentiating piece on a slate where I was anticipating more total points, but Los Angeles doesn’t often play in that script.


THE OUTCOME

For as much as I’d like to Captain Davante Adams ($16,800 CP) or Aaron Rodgers ($16,200 CP) on this slate, with so little value available, I think a more conservative approach is necessary. So, that’s why Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($9,600 CP) seems like the way to go. You’re still getting exposure to the Packers’ passing attack and it’s not like MVS is a stranger to the end zone, either. His salary is the solution to a pricing list that isn’t doing anyone any favors on Friday.

Final Score: Green Bay 21, Los Angeles 17

Set your DraftKings lineups here: Madden Stream $4K Showdown Special [$1K to 1st] (LAR vs GB)


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) 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.