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NFL Picks Fantasy Football Values: Top DraftKings DFS Bargain Plays for Week 16

Steve Buchanan goes position-by-position to find the best affordable plays for this week’s main DraftKings NFL slate.

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Denver Broncos Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

While COVID is the biggest pain in the ass in the existence of existence, it does open up some value plays to consider on Sunday. I’m going to talk about them here. Nice!

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Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: NFL $3M Fantasy Football Millionaire [$1M to 1st + ToC Entry]


QUARTERBACK

($6,000 and under)

Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals vs. Baltimore Ravens, $5,900 — This is the cheapest we’ve seen Burrow in a long time. In fact, the last time we saw Burrow under $6,000 was back in Week 4 against the Jaguars, where he posted 25.32 DKFP. Now he faces the Ravens at $5,900, the team he earned his highest fantasy output against in Week 7, where he scored 30.64 DKFP. Burrow completed 23 of his 38 pass attempts (60.5%) with three touchdowns and an interception. Granted, this was a game where the Bengals were down big, forcing him to throw more but this Ravens team is struggling and we could easily see Burrow go 3x or better on a $5,900 salary.

The Ravens allow opposing teams to go deep against them, allowing one of the highest yards per pass attempt at 7.89. Only the Jets and Lions allow a higher average. Burrow is not afraid to chuck the ball downfield with needed and has done so over 20 yards or more 56 times. 11 of Burrows 26 touchdowns have come in those scenarios and its accounted for 21% of his total passing yards. Barring any late changes, Burrow will have his full complement of receivers for Sunday and pairing him with any of them will take up no more than 26% of your salary cap. As a home favorite this season, Burrow has scored at least 17 DKFP in three of the four games.


RUNNING BACK

($5,000 and under)

Justin Jackson, Los Angeles Chargers at Houston Texans, $4,200 – Its trending toward Austin Ekeler ($8,100) not playing in this game against the Texans. That means Jackson would be the next man up and we get him at a post Christmas clearance price. At $4,200, he’s going to be a chalky play but his matchup is nearly unavoidable. Jackson won’t be a great tournament play because of the ownership but he’s a free square in cash games. This Texans defense is strong against the pass but downright dreadful on the ground. Opposing running backs are averaging 27.2 DKFP, 125 rushing yards (4.8 YPC) and 26.7 receiving yards. Now we have a back at the near minimum taking a starting role? Goodness.

Ekeler has yet to miss a game this season so we haven’t really seen much of Jackson on the field in a meaningful role. That said, when he has handled the ball, he’s been excellent. Jackson has averaged 5.7 YPC on 42 attempts. Granted, A LOT of that came in one game against the Patriots, where he snapped off a 75 yard run in Week 8. If we want to pluck that game out of the mix, he’s still at 4.1 YPC on 41 carries. The Chargers have relied upon Ekeler in the red zone heavily as well, which could shift to Jackson if needed. He’s taken 32% of the total red zone opportunities in that scenario. With the Chargers as big favorites in this game, Jackson is a no-brainer.


WIDE RECEIVER

($5,000 and under)

Emmanuel Sanders, Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots, $4,000 – News came out on Friday that the Bills will be short handed on Sunday. Both Cole Beasley and Gabriel Davis, who has taken on a more prominent role lately, will be out. Stefon Diggs ($7,600) will continue his prominent role, while Isaiah McKenzie ($3,000) will likely return to action after being a healthy scratch the last two weeks. Sanders, meanwhile, should mostly see CB Jalen Mills while lining up on the left side of the field. Mills has allowed a 57% reception rate and an average of 12.2 YPR. He has, however, been scored on six times. This is a sheer volume play, as the Pats try to contain Diggs once again, who had a 4/51/0 line against them in Week 13.

Laquon Treadwell, Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets, $3,500 — I’m going to keep hyping up Treadwell every week. His target share has been on the rise and now the Jaguars will be without Laviska Shenault Jr ($4,100) this week. Treadwell has seen his target share take off since Week 12, when the Jaguars essentially remembered he was on the squad. Since that span, he’s averaged 18.2% of the targets. Last week against the Texans, he saw a season-high 25%. Now he draws a very soft matchup against the Jets and is arguably the WR1 on this team.


TIGHT END

($4,000 and under)

Tyler Kroft, New York Jets vs. Jacksonville Jaguars, $2,500 – Not a big fan of using back-to-back plays in a Jaguars and Jets game but here we are. Kroft is the stone minimum for this week but will be the TE1 on the Jets thanks to Ryan Griffin being placed on the Injured Reserve due to a knee injury. Kroft returned to action last week against the Dolphins and caught both of his targets for 35 yards, one of which went for 24 yards. Even when Griffin was healthy, Kroft had at least two targets in every game he played, except one. With a number of injuries and COVID issues to begin with, including a questionable tag for Jamison Crowder ($5,000), Kroft could be a fairly busy man on Sunday.


DEFENSE/SPECIAL TEAMS

($2,900 and under)

Patriots DST, New England Patriots vs. Buffalo Bills, $2,900 – This is one of the cheapest salaries for the Pats D/ST we’ve seen this season. I have no problem taking this one for a team that is second in interceptions (20) and leads the slate in average fantasy points scored at 10.4. While it was one of the oddest games in recent memory, the Pats had Josh Allen under pressure on 33% of his drop backs, forcing him to complete none of his seven pass attempts in that scenario. Overall, Allen has really struggled under pressure, completing just 44.3% of his pass attempts for an average of 5.9 YPA and throwing five of his 12 interceptions.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and customer (my username is sontzu) 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 do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. 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.


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