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 Ravens and Packers game, which starts at 6:00 p.m. ET Thursday.
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Note: All salaries will be Flex prices unless noted as Captain’s Pick prices.
The upside with Lamar Jackson ($12,000) is obvious, as he can go off on the ground for 100 yards and a score regardless of matchup. In fact, Jackson’s stepped his rushing game up in the red zone recently, posting three sims with multiple rushing touchdowns since Week 22. He’s not the safest QB play, but there aren’t many better plays to target for their ceiling. The Ravens beat the Packers 16-7 in a lackluster sim back in Week 14. Jackson rushed for 61 yards, recording a passing touchdown, and scored 17.42 DKFP.
The best part about Jackson is that you can feel free to stack him with one piece, multiple pieces, or just play him on an island and hope for as much rushing production as possible. Marquise Brown ($8,400) slots in at the WR1, and while slightly overpriced for his 11.3-DKFP average, we’re chasing upside here. If Lamar does get going through the air, this is where the deep balls go. Since Week 24, Brown has three outings of at least 25 DKFP, all with long trips to the end zone. Brown did haul is Baltimore’s only passing touchdown in the Week 14 sim in this matchup, but finished with just a 4-26-1 line.
Another reason to spend on Brown is the lack of WR talent behind him on the depth chart. Willie Snead ($5,000) is generally a non-factor, averaging jut 5.8 DKFP and reaching the end zone twice in 32 sims. Seth Roberts ($4,400) has just as low a floor, but the WR3 could be worth the savings, at least displaying the ability to score with nine total touchdowns. Neither was able to get much going the last time these teams met.
Mark Andrew ($7,600) was a bit more involved in earlier sims, fading as the season has progressed. He hasn’t reached double-digit DKFP in his last six sims, and finished with a 4-66-0 line in his last outing against Green Bay. I’d prefer to spend a bit more salary for exposure to Brown’s upside.
The backfield essentially belongs to Mark Ingram ($9,600), who’s a safe play, but has questionable upside. He was able to find his way to 15.2 DKFP the last time in this matchup, thanks to five receptions. If you anticipate another grinder, a safe floor is worth considering in your lineup. But if your’re building around a shootout, Ingram’s an easy fade at this price.
Green Bay Packers
Like Ingram, Aaron Rodgers ($11,600) could be one of those safe plays, almost always finishing close to his 17.3 DKFP average. But that also means limited upside — Rodgers has eclipsed 30 DKFP just once in 32 sims. Rodgers is overpriced, but if you’re building contrarian and fading Jackson, you almost have to play him.
Davante Adams ($10,800) is my favorite play on this slate, consistently putting up big numbers and commanding targets in Green Bay’s offense. He posts 20-plus DKFP efforts on a regular basis, and has exceeded 27 DKFP in back-to-back sims — going over 100 yards with a touchdown in each. Adams had a 3-86-1 line in Week 14 against the Pack, producing despite a dud from his QB.
Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($5,600) is cheap for his production at WR2. He caught just one pass for 15 yards the first time these teams played, so a tough matchup could come into play, but there’s some good upside here as a last piece to a lineup.
Rodgers spreads the ball around to four WRs in the sims. Allen Lazard ($4,200) isn’t an awful play, but has become the odd man out in Green Bay’s offense. Geronimo Allison ($3,000) stands out at the discount, averaging 8.6 DKFP. Allison’s shown 25-plus DKFP potential on more than one occasion, which could break the slate at low ownership.
Because of the top-heavy WR production from Adams, and depth with Allison, Jimmy Graham ($7,200) just doesn’t get enough work to roster. He’s too overpriced for a TE play that struggles to crack double-digit DKFP, which we saw when he caught two passes for four yards in Week 14 in this matchup.
The Green Bay backfield is a full fade for me. Jamaal Williams ($2,800) is a worthy punt play, but plays to his upside on rare occasions. However, his role is enough to make Aaron Jones ($8,800) an easy fade, averaging just 6.7 DKFP at a massive price point. Both were awful the last time they played Baltimore.
Baltimore has been a letdown in plenty of sims, but I like them to find some big plays against the Packers. We should see some more offense this time around as well, and even if you told me the Ravens would win by double figures, Davante Adams ($16,200 CP) is still a no-brainer for me. He has the safest floor and highest ceiling on the slate.
Final Score: Ravens 24, Packers 17
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) 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.