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Madden Stream Picks: Top DraftKings Fantasy Football DFS Targets, Values for April 2

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

Start your weekend off right with some Friday night fantasy football fun on the DraftKings Dream Stream, which has six Madden 21 sims lined up throughout the day. The featured classic slate kicks off at 6:00 p.m. ET when the Detroit Lions visit the New England Patriots. In primetime at 8:00 p.m. ET, the high-powered offense of the Kansas City Chiefs will be on display as they take on the Chicago Bears. At 10:00 p.m. ET, we close out the slate with a Madden After Dark matchup between the Minnesota Vikings and the Denver Broncos from the virtual Mile High City.

As in all of these Madden 21 sims, it’s important to know that each roster is not impacted by COVID-19 opt-outs, injuries, suspensions or illness 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 the 2020-21 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 on the Madden Stream info page, where you can also find links to 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 Friday Night Special [$1K to 1st] and your FREE fantasy football lineups here: Madden Stream $250 FREE Contest


Quarterback

Stud

Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs at Chicago Bears, $7,600 — The Chiefs have been less dominant than usual lately in these sims, but they were able to stop their losing skid with a 23-17 win over the Browns in the snow on Wednesday. Mahomes had a below-average game by his lofty standards with 17.94 DKFP on 271 yards and just one touchdown in that game. He usually is more productive, averaging 284.5 passing yards per sim over his 69 contests while throwing an incredible 174 touchdown passes and adding 14 more scores on the ground. This will be his first Madden 21 matchup with the Bears and Chicago’s secondary has been very beatable and doesn’t have anyone who can keep up with Mahomes’ elite pass-catchers. Mahomes is definitely expensive, but he’s a cornerstone to build around since he offers great upside and consistent production as the only QB with a perfect 99 overall rating in the Week 1 ratings used for these sims.

Other Option — Mitchell Trubisky ($7,000)

Value

Cam Newton, New England Patriots vs. Detroit Lions, $6,000 — Newton and the Patriots just lost to the Lions, 24-21 in a recent sim but will have a chance at revenge in this rematch. Newton had a solid game in the loss, throwing for 249 yards and two touchdowns for 18.76 DKFP. That performance was part of a run of six straight games with over 16 DKFP that came to an end in the last sim against the 49ers. Newton hasn’t often broken the slate with a huge performance, but he’s usually a reliable midrange contributor to consider if you decide to stack elite plays in other roster spots and pay down a little bit at QB.

Other Option — Drew Lock ($5,400)


Running Back

Stud

Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings at Denver Broncos, $8,500 — Cook has dominated in these sims and has been the top RB overall, scoring a remarkable 71 touchdowns in just 59 sims. He is also averaging 87.1 rushing yards and 4.0 catches for 31.9 receiving yards. That reliable work as a receiver makes him an even lower risk while giving him another way to pile up points on his way to monster games. Cook had 31.7 DKFP in his most recent sim against the Jets and at least 31 DKFP in three of his past five games, highlighted by a 44.6-DKFP game against the Bengals. However, Cook was limited to just 15.1 DKFP in his first meeting with Denver, as the Broncos managed to hold him out of the end zone in that game. Overall though, the Broncos’ defense have struggled against the run, so I don’t think they’ll be able to hold him in check for a second time. Cook is another elite option that you have to consider paying up for, even though his salary is over $8K.

Other Options — Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($6,700)

Value

Tarik Cohen, Chicago Bears vs. Kansas City Chiefs, $4,800 — The Bears use Cohen as their third-down back in these sims, and the elusive playmaker has been a very involved in their passing game. Cohen has averaged 3.1 catches for 24.4 yards per sim while adding 23.1 rushing yards and scoring a total of 14 touchdowns rushing and receiving. He finished with at least 9.0 DKFP in four straight sims and in 10 of his 14 most recent contests. He comes with big-play potential if he gets in space against the Chiefs, and Chicago may have to rely more heavily on the passing game as a whole, leading to more work for Cohen in his timeshare with RB1 David Montgomery ($4,500).

Other Options — James White ($5,000), Melvin Gordon III ($4,600), Phillip Lindsay ($4,300)


Wide Receiver

Stud

Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs at Chicago Bears, $7,300 — Hill is the only player in all of Madden 21 with a perfect 99 speed rating, which has made him the top WR in the game. He is averaging 21.7 DKFP per sim on 6.1 catches for 90.6 yards per sim, and he has totaled 60 touchdowns in 70 contests. The Bears’ secondary has given up plenty of long plays in these sims, and if they give Hill space, he’ll be gone for a long touchdown. Hill has an immensely high ceiling, which he showed off with 56.3 DKFP a few sims ago against the Saints. He has also been very consistent with over 10 DKFP in 63 of his 69 contests (91%). Hill and Mahomes are a very expensive stack, but they have been so locked in that it’s hard to build a lineup without them on any slate in which the Chiefs play.

Other Option — Julian Edelman ($5,700), Courtland Sutton ($5,300)

Value

Allen Robinson II, Chicago Bears vs. Kansas City Chiefs, $5,200 — If the Bears have to throw the ball a lot to keep up with the Chiefs, Robinson is likely in for a heavy workload since he is the highest-rated and most reliable pass-catcher for Mitchell Trubisky ($7,000). Robinson had exactly 100 yards in his most recent sim and produced 19.0 DKFP. He has over 75 yards and 11 DKFP in four of his past five contests and is averaging 3.5 catches for 54.7 yards and 11.4 DKFP per contest overall. When the Bears throw more he brings both a high ceiling and low risk since he gets so many targets.

N’Keal Harry, New England Patriots vs. Detroit Lions, $4,400 — Harry is the Patriots’ top outside receiver since Julian Edelman ($5,700) works almost exclusively out of the slot. Harry has been inconsistent in these sims but comes with a sky-high ceiling if he gets enough targets. He had seven catches for 93 yards, a touchdown and 21.3 DKFP in his most recent matchup against the Lions. Against the Bears a couple of sims before that, Harry had an impressive seven catches for 36.7 DKFP. He has that boom-or-bust potential that plays very well in GPP formats where he brings plenty of upside to your lineup. Overall, he has scored 21 touchdowns in 61 sims, while averaging 3.4 catches for 51.2 yards and 11.0 DKFP per contest.

Other Options — Danny Amendola ($4,700), Sammy Watkins ($4,600), Demarcus Robinson ($4,100), KJ Hamler ($4,000)


Tight End

Stud

Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs at Chicago Bears, $5,800 — For the first time that I can remember, Kelce isn’t the most expensive TE on the slate. T.J. Hockenson ($6,300) has been outstanding lately and gets a favorable matchup against the Patriots, who have been generous to TE in these sims. So, Hockenson actually checks in with a salary $500 more than Kelce’s.

Kelce has been far more productive over the whole run of these sims producing 5.7 catches for 66.6 yards per sim and 41 touchdowns in 70 contests. He has posted a pair of down games recently but should be able to get back on track against the Bears due to his volume of targets and the mismatch he creates over the middle of the field.

Other Options — T.J. Hockenson ($6,300), Devin Asiasi ($4,400)

Value

Noah Fant, Denver Broncos vs. Minnesota Vikings, $4,100 — The Broncos’ offense can be hit-or-miss due to inconsistent QB play from Drew Lock ($5,400), but Fant brings a very high ceiling for a player barely over $4K. Fant had five catches for 121 yards and 20.1 DKFP in his first game against the Vikings and brings big-play ability as one of the fastest TEs in Madden 21. He’s averaged 3.5 catches for 43.3 yards per sim and has produced over 8.0 DKFP in nine of his past 13. He’s a solid salary stretcher either in your TE spot or as a flex play.

Other Option — Jimmy Graham ($3,800)


DST

Stud

Patriots DST vs. Detroit Lions, $3,100 — The Lions have typically been a good matchup for DST plays although the Patriots put up a goose egg against them in their most recent meeting. It was a rare down performance for the Patriots’ defense, which has piled up 102 sacks and 65 takeaways in 62 sims while scoring 12 defensive touchdowns and averaging 6.0 DKFP per sim. The Patriots have been a little better at home, where they have averaged 6.2 DKFP in their 31 games, and they’ll look to slow down Matthew Stafford ($6,500) and the Lions. They did have 10.0 DKFP in their first Madden 21 meeting with the Lions, so a bounce-back performance is definitely possible.

Value

Vikings DST at Denver Broncos, $2,800 — Due to Lock’s inconsistent production, the Broncos have been a good matchup for opposing DSTs as well. The Vikings had two sacks and 3.0 DKFP against him in their 20-14 win earlier in Madden 21, and they have produced 102 sacks while adding 35 takeaways and three defensive touchdowns. The Vikings have a pretty solid pass rush overall in these sims and should be able to get pressure on Lock and force him into mistakes.

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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.