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Fantasy Football Picks: Giants vs. Chiefs DraftKings NFL DFS MNF Showdown Strategy

Garion Thorne preps you for Monday’s 8:15 p.m. ET contest between the Giants and the Chiefs with game-script analysis and Captain’s Picks.

Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Welcome to yet another weird edition of Monday Night Football. If I had told you at the beginning of the season that tonight’s matchup between the New York Giants and the Kansas City Chiefs would feature one team currently sitting last in their division, I think even Giants fans would have conceded it was Big Blue. Somehow, that’s not actually the case.

Can the Chiefs begin to turn their season around after losses in four of their past six games? Let’s break it all down from a Showdown perspective.

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: NFL Showdown $2.25M Monday Night Millionaire [$1M to 1st + ToC Entry] (NYG vs KC)


Captain’s Picks

Tyreek Hill ($16,500 CP) - Any time the Chiefs are on a single-game slate, you’re left with a difficult decision on who to fade of their All-Pro trio. Patrick Mahomes ($12,000) is usually regarded as the best quarterback in the NFL, and his presence only raises the ceiling of his two top targets: Travis Kelce ($10,600) and Hill. However, because of their immense skill-level, it’s virtually impossible to afford all three in the same build. It’s also quite the task to isolate one of these assets as a Captain’s pick, though I think Hill does stand slightly above the rest when it comes to this particular Showdown contest. Simply put, the speedy wideout is a big play threat any time he touches the football. Hill entered Week 8 averaging a robust 0.41 DKFP per snap played — the fourth-highest mark of any wide receiver with at least 30 receptions this season. Hill’s second among all WRs in targets (72), too, and is one of only nine men with at least two receiving touchdowns of over 40 yards so far in 2021. Meanwhile, the Giants have conceded a whopping 161 targets to opposing wideouts through seven games, which is the fourth-most of any team, while they’ve additionally surrendered 8.3 yards per opponent pass attempt when playing on the road.

Daniel Jones ($15,300 CP) - The only thing you need to know about the fantasy viability of any Giants’ asset this evening is that Chiefs D/ST ($3,400) is arguably the worst in the league. The unit ranks 31st by DVOA against both the pass and the rush, while Kansas City has also allowed a massive 6.6 yards per opponent play — easily the highest-mark in the NFL. In particular, this inability to defend has shown up most in the production of opposing QBs. The Chiefs have conceded the most DKFP per game to quarterbacks, with the team having allowed four 30-plus DKFP performances dating back to the beginning of Week 2. Now, to be fair, Jones hasn’t exactly set the world on fire in recent appearances. The young pivot has failed to eclipse even 18.0 DKFP in each of his past three starts and he’s thrown for multiple touchdowns in just one of his seven contests in 2021. Still, Jones won’t see a better matchup this season and the fact he entered Week 8 sitting third among QBs in rushing yards (229) elevates his DFS floor considerably. Jones should also benefit from the likely return of both Sterling Shepard ($7,000; hamstring) and Kadarius Toney ($6,800; ankle).

Value FLEX Plays

Evan Engram ($5,400) - While the return of both Shepard and Toney would certainly cut into the season-high eight targets Engram saw in Week 7’s victory over the Panthers, the former first-round pick could still be staring down a huge performance on Monday. First and foremost, Engram just seems as healthy as he’s been all year, as he continues to distance himself from a calf issue that cost him New York’s opening two games of 2021. This matchup is just about perfect, too. The Chiefs have surrendered the most DKFP per game to opposing tight ends so far this season, the direct result of allowing a league-worst 11.5 yards per target to the position. Heck, Kansas City’s conceded a touchdown reception to an opposing TE in each of the last four weeks. With the trade deadline on the horizon, could Engram make what might be his final contest with the Giants a memorable one?

Jerick McKinnon ($1,000) - McKinnon isn’t an option outside of those implementing a “stars and scrubs” build this evening; but let’s not pretend that that isn’t a more popular strategy when a team like the Chiefs is headlining a slate. McKinnon has seen his role grow with Kansas City since Clyde Edwards-Helaire (knee) was lost due to injury, as the veteran back has logged a 30.0% snap share since the beginning of Week 5. McKinnon has also racked up eight targets in the Chiefs’ past two games and is averaging 6.1 yards per touch for the season as a whole. It’s all a very limited sample and McKinnon’s ceiling or role is nowhere close to that of Darrel Williams ($9,000), but with a price tag of just $1K, the 29-year-old has some sneaky potential in a full-point PPR setting. It wouldn’t take much for McKinnon to reach 6x or 7x value.


Travis Kelce ($10,600) - Let me make this clear right off the top: In no way am I suggesting that Kelce will play poorly in this contest. However, with the salary you’ll need to expend on Mahomes, Hill and Jones, there just won’t be enough left for Kansas City’s talented TE. Still, if you are looking for a reason to at least be a little concerned with Kelce, can I interest you in the 32-year-old’s reduced red zone role? Kelce has always been a fixture for the Chiefs near the goal line, as the tight end registered team-high red zone target rates of 30.3% and 25.3% in each of the past two seasons, respectively. However, through seven games in 2021, Kelce’s 14.7% target rate inside the 20 trails not only the aforementioned Hill, but also Mecole Hardman ($4,800). If Kelce isn’t scoring touchdowns, his DFS upside simply can not match the insane ceilings of his star teammates.


While I do think that the Chiefs will win tonight’s game — the Giants won’t be able to score enough points to keep pace — it’s crucial to note that few teams have been as bad against the spread as Kansas City in the past two seasons. In fact, the Chiefs are 4-14 ATS in their last 18 contests and 1-8 ATS in their past nine home games. With as terrible as Kansas City’s defense has played, I just can’t lay double-digit points. The backdoor will certainly be open for a New York cover.

Final Score: Kansas City 30, New York 24

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: NFL Showdown $2.25M Monday Night Millionaire [$1M to 1st + ToC Entry] (NYG vs KC)

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