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Leveraging the NFL’s most volatile players for GPP upside in Week 16

Marquise Brown’s production during his inaugural campaign signals the start of an alpha dog career. His week-to-week fluctuation coupled with an intimidating matchup against Cleveland is keeping his ownership low, but his elite playmaking ability means he can burn lock-down cornerbacks. He’ll get a chance to prove it when he lines up against Denzel Ward and his No. 3 ranked +62.7 Coverage Rating.

No stranger to the boom-or-bust life, Cooper Kupp’s 10.4 (No. 12 among qualified wide receivers) Weekly Volatility mark screams fantasy point-scoring oscillation. Kupp has recorded 14 or more DraftKings points and scored a touchdown in each of the past three games. A contrarian play to be sure, he faces stiff competition from the San Francisco secondary, which ranks No. 2 in pass defense DVOA.

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Cheap DFS Lineup Makers for Week 16

In the only game Josh Jacobs missed this season, DeAndre Washington operated as a bell-cow, putting up 96 yards on 20 touches and finding the end zone. His passing game role was also impressive, catching six of seven targets. If his 9.7 percent (71st-percentile among qualified running backs) College Target Share is any indication, that role will continue this week against the Chargers.

Christian Kirk matched his season-low in routes and targets in Week 15. He’s seen five targets in only two other games this season. In the two games following those contests, he’s totaled 21 targets, 14 receptions, 217 yards and three scores. Seattle has given up big games in back to back weeks to Robert Woods and D.J. Moore, who play comparable roles to Kirk. Look for him to bounce back in this spot with a helicopter performance from Kyler Murray.

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3 Scorching Hot DFS Takes: Week 16

Courtland Sutton’s wildly predictable breakout has come to fruition and will continue to roll on as he takes the Lions to task this week. Detroit’s defense has had more Air Yards thrown against them (301.3 per game) than all but one team at a higher depth of target (10.1) than any other team. Sutton just happens to be top-10 in the NFL with 24 deep targets. No player is more acutely prepared to eviscerate his opponent this week than Sutton.

It cannot be emphasized enough how bad Kyle Allen was at getting Curtis Samuel the ball. No quarterback has done a receiver more dirty than Allen has done Samuel this year. Allen performed a Mafia-style hit on Samuel’s fantasy value, but Will Grier has arrived to resurrect him for the final two weeks. Samuel goes for 20 DraftKings points this week and is a great stacking option with Grier, because we have to play Grier at $4,300.

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Fantasy Football Trends to Watch – Week 16 Edition

After a frustrating timeshare to start the season, Joe Mixon has become Cincinnati’s unquestioned bell-cow running back. Looking at efficiency metrics, it makes sense for the Bengals to feature Mixon. His elusiveness is evident in his 32.7-percent (No. 3 among qualified running backs) Juke Rate and 1.65 (No. 10) Yards Created per Carry. This week, Mixon’s efficiency should continue against the Miami Dolphins and their league-bottom run defense.

Breshad Perriman has taken strides as a player in 2019, with a 103.2 (No. 29) QB Rating when Targeted and +12.5 (No. 20) Production Premium. His 4.30 (100th-percentile) 40-yard dash and 125.7 (99th-percentile) Speed Score give him the ability to create big plays in this offense. While missing Chris Godwin and Mike Evans will surely hinder this offense, Perriman can deliver big games down the stretch with Jameis Winston airing it out.

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Steven Sims NFL Minivan and Other Week 15 Waiver Targets

Dueling with Greg Ward for the title of most boring yet sensible play is Steven Sims, who drew eleven targets against the Eagles in Week 15. Unlike Ward, who will have to continually find his balance as the Eagles pass catchers return to health, Sims has a role planted on solid ground. Without a tight end of consequence, or an every down receiving back on the field, Sims will continue to see volume and is a fantastic plug for the Championship round against the Giants. 

Jonnu Smith does see snaps, but it isn’t every week that the team asks him to run routes. When asked to run 20 or more routes, he produces. Smith averages 1.85 (No. 9 among qualified tight ends) yards of Target Separation, also separating himself from the crowd with 8.8 (No. 6) Yards Per Target. In Week 16, Smith and the Titans see New Orleans. He is a player to add if needing tight end production in the final week of the fantasy football season.

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Week 15’s Lessons Learned: Kenyan Drake Smash

The untimely death of David Johnson has meant tons of volume for Kenyan Drake, who scored four times on 22 carries Sunday. Drake was the engine against a hapless Browns team, finding success against light boxes while Cleveland attempted to cover Arizona’s wide receiver-heavy scheme. It’s been a sure surprise for fantasy players after the Cardinals took a shot on Drake before the trade deadline, and he’s looking like a Zero RB hero heading into Week 16.

While it wasn’t the 12-253-2 effort against Tampa Bay in 2017, or the infamous 12-300-1 game against Carolina in 2016, Julio Jones’ eruption game lifted the Falcons over the second-biggest favorite of Sunday’s action. Julio’s day helped him surpass Torry Holt and Jerry Rice for the most receiving yards in a player’s first nine seasons in NFL history. There’s no telling how much longer he will be doing it, but just enjoy greatness while it lasts.

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Wide Receiver vs. Cornerback Matchups to Target: Week 15

The DeVante Parker breakout season is firing on all cylinders, right in time for the fantasy playoffs. Given Parker’s recent surge to fantasy dominance and Giants cornerback DeAndre Baker’s propensity to allow production, this is another matchup that’s easy to get behind. Baker crumbles under increased playing time, and with Janoris Jenkins out of the picture, Baker makes Parker a lock button play this week.

Without the risk of a Mike Evans smash week, Chris Godwin is an absolute lock play. Already averaging eight targets per game, Godwin is now the only true alpha in Tampa Bays offense and the easy candidate to garner a large portion of Evans’ 23.8-percent (No 16 among qualified wide receivers) Target Share being left behind. He’ll do so against a struggling Darius Slay. Godwin’s situation without Evans coupled with Slay’s propensity to fold under increased volume make this a top play in Week 15.

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The Long Gain: Bargain Running Backs to Target in Week 15

Kyle Shanahan appears dedicated to feeding Raheem Mostert, provided that he continues to produce at the level he has of late. In what projects as a winnable game for the 49ers against Atlanta, and considering their high volume rushing attack, Mostert is an attractive start from both a volume and game script perspective. It’s time to once again take advantage of the low cost, and fire up Raheem “Must Start” for yet another week.

Both Miles Sanders and Boston Scott should see plenty of run against Washington in Week 15 considering Philadelphia’s current situation at receiver. Both Alshon Jeffrey and Nelson Agholor will miss this week’s contest, and DeSean Jackson’s season is over. For a team already missing several pass catchers, Sanders should provide plenty of upside as both a rusher and receiver.