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Madden Stream Picks: Top DraftKings Fantasy Football DFS Strategy for Chiefs-Buccaneers Big Game Preview Showdown on February 6

Zach Thompson gives his top lineup advice for Saturday’s Madden Big Game Preview, which starts at 2:00 p.m. ET.

As part of what should be a fun-filled weekend leading up to Sunday’s Super Bowl, the DraftKings Dream Stream has all kinds of fun festivities featured on the DraftKings $250k Tailgate Weekend on The Dream Stream. Part of the fun on Saturday is a Madden 21 sim featuring a preview of the big game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, featuring a massive $55K free contest. Since last March, the DraftKings Dream Stream has been featuring Madden sims, and this will be a fun way to get a sneak peek of the matchup we will get on Sunday.

If you’re new to these sims, there are a few important things to know. First, each roster is not impacted by COVID-19 opt-outs, injuries, suspensions or illness and 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, which is updated with new matchups as they become available. There were a few tweaks to the X-factors and Superstars in the latest December update from EA Sports, 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 $4K Big Game Warmup [$1K to 1st] (KC vs TB) and your free lineups here: Madden Stream $55K FREE Big Game Preview Contest (KC vs TB)


SHOWDOWN STRATEGY

Captain’s Picks

Tyreek Hill ($15,000 CP) — Hill is the only player in these Madden sims with a 99 speed rating, and he has used that breakaway ability to be the top WR play across the board. In the 48 Madden 21 sims he has been a part of, he has averaged 6.5 catches for 94.5 yards per sim and scored a massive 41 touchdowns. He’s averaging 22.5 DKFP per sim, which is second only to Patrick Mahomes ($11,200). I actually think Hill’s ceiling is slightly higher than Mahomes’ in this contest since he should be able to dominate the Bucs’ CBs as he did in real life during the regular season. The Bucs’ CBs all have overall ratings under 80 and speed ratings under 94, giving Hill a distinct advantage. He used that advantage for five catches, 140 yards and two touchdowns for a total of 34.0 DKFP against the Bucs when he faced them earlier in the Madden 21 sims in a game that Tampa Bay won, 21-14.

Hill is a little more volatile from sim-to-sim than Mahomes is, but his ceiling is off the charts. He has at least 30 DKFP in 13 sims while Mahomes has reached that mark 10 times. Obviously, if Hill has a big game, that will probably correlate to a good performance for Mahomes as well, but ultimately the mismatch makes me think Hill is the way to go at Captain while saving a FLEX spot for Mahomes.

Scotty Miller ($6,900 CP) — Since the Bucs don’t have Antonio Brown in this sim, Miller serves as the WR3 and is regularly involved. If you roll with Miller as your Captain, it will leave you plenty of salary cap space to stack your flex plays. He has hit for a few monster games, posting over 20 DKFP in three of his 35 sims with a catch. He has multiple catches in five straight contests and in nine of his past 10, averaging 9.0 DKFP over that 10-game stretch. If he hits double-digit DKFP at this price, he’ll be an excellent return as long as the stars you stack in flex come through. If you want to have Hill, Mahomes and Travis Kelce ($8,800) without going with a punt play, you’ll have to get creative in your Captain’s Pick slot, and Miller is one option that does come with big-play potential.


Big Game Playlist


FLEX Plays

Patrick Mahomes ($11,200) Mahomes has been excellent in these Madden 21 sims, averaging 287.2 passing yards per contest while throwing for 116 touchdowns and just 12 interceptions in his 48 sims. He has also added 11 rushing scores as well. He had 307 yards and two passing scores against the Bucs in their earlier meeting and finished with 23.48 DKFP, so another touchdown or two would make him a must-roster even at this salary. He has had a few down sims lately in losses to the Raiders and Cowboys, which is enough to keep him out of the Captain’s Pick section, but he still has too much potential to totally pass on even at his $11K salary. As mentioned above, Mahomes is the only QB in these Week 1 player ratings that has a perfect 99 overall rating, and he has been the most productive passer in the Madden sims.

Mike Evans ($7,400) — Evans is the Bucs’ WR1 but has not been as explosive or consistent as Hill. He still makes a solid play in this matchup, though, since I think the Bucs will be playing from behind and throwing the ball quite a bit. The Chiefs usually do a good job on slot WR, so Chris Godwin ($8,400) could be less of an option inside, leaving Evans to soak up targets on the outside. He has exactly five catches in each of his four most recent sims and has reached double-digit DKFP in seven straight. Overall, he is averaging 4.3 catches for 57.5 yards per sim in his 42 Madden 21 sims. He surpassed that average with six catches, 92 yards and 15.2 DKFP in his first meeting with the Chiefs, and he should be a good investment at this salary with a similar workload in this rematch. Even though he has only reached 100 yards three times, he does have a very high ceiling which he showed with 200 receiving yards and 38.0 DKFP in an early Madden 21 sim against the Falcons.

LeSean McCoy ($6,200) — McCoy is the Bucs’ third-down back in these sims and usually finds a way to make a difference when Tom Brady ($9,400) is operating out of the shotgun or with extra WR on the field. McCoy had one of his eight touchdowns in Madden 21 against the Chiefs in their previous meeting and finished with 16.1 DKFP on 46 rushing yards and three catches for 25 more yards. He has at least three catches in six of his past seven games, and his PPR production provides a nice safety net that keeps him from being a total bust. Typically receiving backs are a little more reliable than the other side of their backfield platoons, which in this case is Leonard Fournette ($6,600).

Demarcus Robinson ($5,200) — Another PPR producer that can save you some salary in a flex spot is Robinson, who is the Chiefs’ WR3 and usually gets at least a few catches in each game. He had four catches for 34 yards and 7.4 DKFP in his first game against Tampa Bay and should be able to use his superior speed to also get in some mismatches on the outside. Robinson has three touchdowns in his six most recent sims and has hit for over 15 DKFP in each of those three games. If you don’t quite trust Miller, Robinson could also be a nice option as an affordable Captain’s Pick since the ceiling is there and he allows you the cap room to stack flex plays, much like Miller does.


Fades

Tom Brady ($9,400) — This is no reflection on Brady’s abilities in the real big game on Sunday, but in Madden, he has not been worth nearly this much salary. He did have one of his best sims in his most recent contest, throwing for 397 yards and 25.88 DKFP against the Bills. Unfortunately for players who have built around Brady, though, he has rarely reached that level. He has been held under 19 DKFP in 30 of his 42 sims (71%) and only had 12.12 DKFP in his previous matchup with the Chiefs, and that was actually in a game the Bucs won. Brady needs a ton of yardage or three-plus touchdowns to really return value since he adds nothing in the run game, and there are plenty of options who cost less but have higher ceilings in this matchup.

Chris Godwin ($8,400) — Godwin has had some huge games in these sims, stepping up when Evans is locked down on the outside. For example, against the Bills and Tre’Davious White, Godwin just had 10 catches, 176 yards, two touchdowns and 42.6 DKFP in his most recent sim. Since each of these contests is simulated in exhibition mode, though, there’s no momentum build from sim-to-sim. It will be a tough matchup for Godwin as well since the Chiefs use X-factor Superstar Tyrann Mathieu to cover opposing slot WRs. Godwin only had one catch for 10 yards in their earlier meeting, so I’d look at other WR options in this rematch.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($8,000) Since he is the RB1 and the third-down back, CEH usually stays very busy in these sims and can always get a score or two to make a fade of him look bad. However, he hasn’t been nearly as reliable as Kelce, Hill and Mahomes. He is also in a tough matchup against the Bucs’ run defense which is very solid in these sims and held him to just 39 rushing yards in their first meeting. If you’re spending $8K for him, it’s definitely worth trying to find the little bit extra to get up to Kelce if possible.


THE OUTCOME

The Chiefs have been the most consistent offensive team in these Madden sims even though they have slipped up a few times since claiming the Madden Holiday Season Championship just before the calendar flipped to 2021. I absolutely love this matchup for Hill, and I think he’ll dominate with a huge game and carry his team to the win. For the Bucs, I think Mike Evans, Rob Gronkowski and LeSean McCoy will have solid games catching the ball and putting up PPR points, but ultimately the Chiefs’ passing game will prove too much for the Bucs in this sim.

Final Score: Kansas City 35, Tampa Bay 17

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: Madden Stream $4K Big Game Warmup [$1K to 1st] (KC vs TB) and your free lineups here: Madden Stream $55K FREE Big Game Preview Contest (KC vs TB)


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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.