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NFL Picks for Fantasy Football: Top DraftKings NFL DFS Running Backs, RB Touch and Target Projections for Week 8

Stan Son gives you his top DraftKings fantasy football picks at running back for Week 8 along with their touch and target projections.

Just so I don’t get clowned by the @dklive account, I will not be writing up Derrick Henry ($8,900) this week. Prepare yourselves for the five-touchdown game. While the 49ers were able to successfully gash the Colts on the ground last week, I think that had more to do with the rain and soggy field than anything, as the Colts are built with speed on defense. They have the top-ranked rush defense by DVOA and have had relative success against Henry in the past. I just wrote up Derrick Henry, didn’t I?

There are only two teams on bye this week, so no Josh Jacobs on the slate.

There are still plenty of good options, though, spread throughout the salary structure. We’re starting to get a good idea of some of the best matchups to attack and how workloads will be distributed. Listed below are the RBs that I think will return the best value at their price point, whether as studs or value plays, and their opportunity projections for Week 8 are also included.

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Studs

Najee Harris, Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns, $7,500

The matchup isn’t a good one, as the Browns are third in rush defense DVOA. DraftKings Sportsbook also has the total at just 42, with the Steelers implied for 19.25 points. It’s all about talent and opportunity, though. We know that Harris is talented. As for the opportunities? He’s rushed 23 and 24 times over the last two games for 122 and 81 yards, respectively. What really makes Harris valuable are the targets in the passing game. He has at least five targets in all but one game with a high of 19! In that 19-target game, Harris hauled in 14 for 102 yards. He also has 11 carries and 12 targets in the red zone. He’s scored at least 20.0 DKFP in each of the last four games with a high of 31.2 DKFP.

Projections (courtesy of Razzball)
Rushing: 16.5 attempts
Receiving: 6.6 Targets; 5.1 Receptions

Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts vs. Tennessee Titans, $7,200

Taylor has yet to receive 20 carries in a game this season, but over the last four games he’s scored a touchdown in each start and has gone over 100 yards three times. While the passing game involvement hasn’t been as robust as for Harris and D’Andre Swift ($7,100), Taylor has averaged 3.0 targets per contest since Week 4 and went for 116 yards and a touchdown three games ago. He’s also averaging 5.5 red zone rushes within that same span, and he should get plenty of those this weekend against a Titans team that is 25th in rush defense DVOA.

Projections (courtesy of Razzball)
Rushing: 14.2 attempts
Receiving: 4.3 Targets; 3.3 Receptions

D’Andre Swift, Detroit Lions vs. Philadelphia Eagles, $7,100

Wesley Snipes said to always bet on black. While I agree that is always a viable strategy, I’m going to bet on talent. Despite the poor offensive situation in Detroit, Swift has thrived. It helps that the coaching staff does not wave the white flag when behind and turtle up. They get more aggressive when the situation calls for it. Swift only has 11 ,13 and 13 carries in the last three games, respectively, with a high of 51 yards. Despite that, he’s produced 22.4 DKFP, 17.4 DKFP and 28.4 DKFP. He’s scored two touchdowns on the ground and, like Harris, makes his hay in the passing game. He has target counts of 11, five, seven, six, six, seven and 10 and two games with at least 10 receptions. The most impressive aspect of Swift’s season, though, has been the red zone involvement. He has 16 rushes and nine targets inside the 20.

Projections (courtesy of Razzball)
Rushing: 12.6 attempts
Receiving: 8.2 Targets; 6.2 Receptions



Values

Eli Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers at Chicago Bears, $5,400

Trey Sermon ($4,700) was drafted in the third-round, while Mitchell was selected in the sixth round. Mitchell has 63 carries for 296 yards and two touchdowns, while Sermon has 31 rushes for 135 yards and a touchdown. Mitchell is coming off an 18-carry, 107-yard and one touchdown performance against the top-ranked rush defense in the league. Granted, it was rainy, which likely affected a Colts defense predicated on speed, but it was an impressive performance nonetheless. He is the main guy for the 49ers right now and now faces a Bears unit that is 17th in rush defense DVOA. However, there is limited work in the passing game.

Projections (courtesy of Razzball)
Rushing: 19.1 attempts
Receiving: 1.7 Targets; 1.3 Receptions

Alex Collins, Seattle Seahawks vs. Jacksonville Jaguars, $5,300

Collins is coming off a rough game against the Saints (16 rushes for 35 yards). New Orleans is second in rush defense DVOA, while the Jaguars are 20th. He should find the sledding much easier and, as a home favorite, there should be plenty of opportunities for fantasy goodies. He doesn’t have much involvement in the passing game, though.

Projections (courtesy of Razzball)
Rushing: 15.7 attempts
Receiving: 1.6 Targets; 1.2 Receptions

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