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Madden Stream Picks: Top DraftKings Fantasy Football DFS Targets, Values for January 13

Zach Thompson gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Wednesday’s three-game Madden Stream DraftKings slate, which starts at 6:00 p.m. ET.

We’ve got another Wild Weather Wednesday to watch on the DraftKings Dream Stream with six weather games on the schedule. The featured three-game classic slate kicks off at 6:00 p.m. ET. when the Indianapolis Colts visit the Cincinnati Bengals in a rain game. At 8:00 p.m. ET in primetime, two teams from New York state face off as the Buffalo Bills travel to the virtual Big Apple to take on the New York Giants in the snow. The final game of the day on “Madden After Dark” is the only windy game on the schedule and features the New York Jets visiting the Tennessee Titans.

As usual, it’s important to note 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 $5K Wednesday Night Special [$1K to 1st] and your FREE fantasy football lineups here: Madden Stream $500 FREE Contest



Quarterback

Stud

Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills at New York Giants, $7,100 — Allen has been very good lately in these sims and can put up big numbers as a dual-threat QB. The December update from EA Sports tweaked the superstar traits of a few players, and Allen got the abilities of “Quickdraw” and “Escape Artist.” Those have helped him be more effective when pressured and allowed him to be even better when he takes off and runs. In his most recent sim which was Tuesday night, he ran for 127 yards and a touchdown while throwing for 200 yards and another score on his way to 32.7 DKFP against the Titans. He has over 17 DKFP in seven of his past nine games including three games with over 30 DKFP. His running ability gives him a high ceiling and also makes it much less likely that he totally busts, since he has more ways to produce fantasy goodness. This matchup with the Giants should be a good one for him, and we’ve often seen running QBs thrive when they take off and run in the snow.

Value

Philip Rivers, Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals, $5,600 — Even though Joe Burrow ($5,500) has outproduced Philip Rivers ($5,600) on a regular basis in these sims, I’m taking the veteran QB over the rookie in the first game due to style and matchup. Rivers’ game is well-suited for the rain since he typically throws shorter passes and lets his pass-catchers do the work after the catch. Burrow relies more on shots down the field which could be more greatly impacted by the rain. Rivers also just tore up the Bengals when they met three sims ago, totaling 333 passing yards, a touchdown and 20.32 DKFP in the Colts’ 30-24 victory. I doubt this rematch will be that high-scoring, but Rivers should be able to find success against a beatable Bengals defense.

Other Option — Joe Burrow ($5,500)


Running Back

Stud

Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans vs. New York Jets, $7,800 — The late game is a wind game which usually means plenty of work for running backs, and since both the Titans and Jets already lean heavily on the run game, I’d avoid both QBs and most pass-catchers in this matchup. Henry, though, should be a great play since he is a fantasy beast when given volume. He has 38 touchdowns in his 34 sims and had a score Tuesday against the Bills despite only finishing with 13.9 DKFP. Usually, he is much more productive and has posted over 21 DKFP in six of his previous eight sims coming into that contest. On top of his great work on the ground, Henry has been very involved catching passes out of the backfield in Madden 21, averaging 3.7 catches for 23.7 receiving yards per sim. Even against the Jets’ pretty solid run defense, I think Henry is set for a big game in windy virtual Nashville.

Other Option — Saquon Barkley ($8,500), Le’Veon Bell ($7,100)

Value

Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals vs. Indianapolis Colts, $5,600 — The Bengals use a timeshare in Madden 21 with Bernard as the third-down back and Joe Mixon ($5,500) as the RB1. Bernard can often be the better option, though, since he isn’t quite as touchdown-reliant as Mixon and also chips in regular PPR production. Bernard had four catches, 41 yards and a rushing touchdown for 16.5 DKFP against the Colts in their recent meeting, which was his third straight game with double-digit DKFP. He has struggled in his two games since then, but the rain and a return to this matchup should help to get him back on track in this contest.

Other Option — Devin Singletary ($6,000), Marlon Mack ($3,800)


Wide Receiver

Stud

John Ross III, Cincinnati Bengals vs. Indianapolis Colts, $6,200 — Ross is the second-most expensive WR on this slate despite being the WR3 on his own team. The reason he’s so pricey is that he has been going off for huge games lately and always has a high ceiling due to his 96 speed rating. He also just went off in this same matchup since the Colts struggle against speedy slot receivers. Ross put up four catches, 97 yards, a touchdown and 19.7 DKFP in their recent meeting and has hit double-digit DKFP in three of his past four sims and in eight of his past 14, including four performances with over 19 DKFP. He has that kind of ceiling in every matchup and is worth considering since there aren’t any elite locks at WR on this slate.

Other Options — Stefon Diggs ($6,600), Jamison Crowder ($5,500)

Value

Darius Slayton, New York Giants vs. Buffalo Bills, $3,900 — Slayton is also the third WR on his team, but sometimes that has helped him avoid some of the elite CBs his team has faced. The last time the Giants took on the Bills, Tre’Davious White and Co. shut down the Giants’ other WRs, but Slayton went off for six catches, 130 yards, two touchdowns and 34.0 DKFP. While he’s unlikely to hit that ceiling again, he has plenty of upside in this matchup and is a great boom-or-bust play. To illustrate how volatile he has been, two sims ago he had three touchdowns and 38.7 DKFP against the Cowboys but followed that with just 2.0 DKFP against the Panthers in his most recent game. Despite those wild swings, his upside is high enough to make him worth a look with his salary under $4K.

Adam Humphries, Tennessee Titans vs. New York Jets, $3,500 — While I’m not counting on much from the passing games in this contest, Humphries is a very attractive play under $4K who usually gets enough PPR work to be a solid option. Weather also tends to force more passes to be shorter and over the middle, where Humphries typically does his best work. He had six catches for 68 yards and 12.8 DKFP Tuesday against the Bills and finished with 13.9 DKFP. He has multiple catches in eight of his past nine games and is a relatively safe option compared to Slayton. Slayton’s ceiling is much higher since Humphries hasn’t even reached 100 yards in any of his 34 sims and has only scored four touchdowns, but if you want someone to haul in a few passes over the middle and provide some reliable points from under $4K, check out the Titans’ primary slot receiver.

Other Options — A.J. Brown ($4,900), Sterling Shepard ($4,700), Breshad Perriman ($3,800), Parris Campbell ($3,300)


Tight End

Stud

Evan Engram, New York Giants vs. Buffalo Bills, $5,000 — Engram has a 90 speed rating, which ties him with Darren Waller as the fastest TE in Madden. As a result, Engram can definitely make plays after the catch and score long touchdowns if he gets loose over the middle of the field. He has double-digit DKFP in four of his past five games with at least three catches in each of those contests. In fact, he has at least three catches in 30-of-32 (94%) Madden 21 sims and has never been held to one or zero catches. The Bills have great CBs but sometimes give up big games to TEs, so Engram is an elite play with a high ceiling.

Other Option — Jonnu Smith ($4,900)

Value

Trey Burton, Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals, $4,700 — Burton has been a key part of the Colts’ passing success with Rivers in Madden 21 since the veteran QB relies heavily on his TE, just like in real life. Burton just had 10 catches for 93 yards, a touchdown and 25.3 DKFP against the Bengals in their recent matchup and also had a touchdown in his most recent sim, posting 13.5 DKFP against the Seahawks. He has over 11 DKFP in five of his past six games and has picked his average up to 11.4 DKFP per game as a result. In his 29 sims as the TE1, he has averaged 4.9 catches per contest, making him a great PPR producer and showing how heavy his volume should be in this rematch in the rain against the Bengals.

Other Option — Lee Smith ($3,100)


DST

Stud

Jets DST at Tennessee Titans, $3,000 — The Jets have been very good at limiting their opponents’ production and typically get involved in low-scoring contests even when the wind isn’t a factor. With the wind and likely a run-heavy game script, they should be able to hold the Titans in check in this matchup. They have allowed 14 points or fewer in six of their past eight games and have also totaled 84 sacks in 34 sims to go with 20 takeaways and six defensive touchdowns. The Jets’ defense has actually been better on the road, where it averages an impressive 7.4 DKFP per sim.

Other Option — Bills DST ($2,900)

Value

Colts DST at Cincinnati Bengals, $2,700 — The Colts’ defense has produced some big plays in its sims as well with four defensive touchdowns to go with 60 sacks and 13 takeaways. The Colts get a great matchup in this one against Burrow and the Bengals, who tend to be aggressive despite the weather, which sometimes leads to turnovers. Indy had two picks, two sacks and 6.0 DKFP in its recent game against the Bengals, and the Colts’ pass rush should be able to bother Burrow again in this 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.