DraftKings NFL GPP Lineup Advice: Week 3
Running backs are well represented in this week’s piece, with four making appearances below, which obviously means you’ll need to do some mixing and matching since you can’t roster them all on the same team. One of the four backs is featured in a four-man game stack that includes a quarterback and his talented top two receivers.
Studs Worth Their Salary
Jonathan Taylor (RB – IND): $7,000 vs. Jets
Taylor and the Colts are far and away the biggest favorites in Week 3, as they have a 10.5-point spread favoring them over the visiting Jets, according to the BettingPros consensus line. Taylor is coming off of a bell-cow showing with a 26-101-1 line on the ground and a pair of receptions for nine receiving yards.
He’s once again well-positioned for a hefty workload. At first blush, the Jets might not look like a great matchup, as they rank third in rush defense Defense-adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA), per Football Outsiders. Their rank is likely aided in a big way by holding Tevin Coleman to just 12 yards on 14 carries last week, but the more electric combo of Raheem Mostert and Jerick McKinnon thumped them for an 8-92-1 line and 3-77-1 line on the ground, respectively. For the year, they’ve been giving through the air to backs, too, yielding 14 receptions for 88 receiving yards and a score through the air, according to Pro-Football-Reference.
James Conner (RB – PIT): $6,700 vs. Texans
Conner rebounded from an injury-shortened season opener to pile up 106 rushing yards and a score on 16 carries while adding another 15 receiving yards on a pair of grabs. Healthy entering this week, he’s in a great spot to pile up fantasy points in bunches again.
Football Outsiders ranks the Texans 24th in rush defense DVOA, and they’ve been trounced for 6.27 yards per carry by backs this year. Conner is game-script proof thanks to his receiving ability, but with the Steelers serving as four-point home favorites, I like his odds of being leaned on heavily on the ground and attacking the mouthwatering per-carry yardage total the Texans have coughed up that I previously cited.
Jerick McKinnon (RB – SF): $4,900 at Giants
I pointed out McKinnon making the most of his limited carry total last week above, but he should be in store for more opportunities this week with Coleman out and Mostert likely out. Given that McKinnon has missed back-to-back years recovering and overcoming complications from reconstructive knee surgery for a torn ACL, the 49ers probably won’t treat him as a bell cow. Through two weeks, Jet’s shown he doesn’t need to be utilized as a workhorse to help fantasy squads.
He’s parlayed six carries into 101 rushing yards and a touchdown and turned six targets into three receptions for 20 receiving yards and another score. Even if he only touches the ball 12-to-15 times this week, he’s shown the explosiveness and speed to do damage with that type of increased workload. There’s a forthcoming back who I also love, and McKinnon checks in as my fourth-favorite back in this space. With that in mind, I’m only mixing him into a handful of GPP rosters as opposed to making him a locked-in option on most of my teams.
Logan Thomas (TE – WAS): $3,700 at Browns
Thomas isn’t entirely a matchup-driven punt. Although the Browns have coughed up the second-most DraftKings points per game to tight ends through the first two weeks. His usage is eye-catching, too. He’s played 52.8 percent of slot snaps and is responsible for 100% route participation, according to Player Profiler,
Additionally, he’s been heavily targeted with 17 through two games. His 26.6 percent target share is tied with No. 1 receiver Terry McLaurin’s mark on the Football Team, and it’s the third-highest mark among tight ends, according to Sports Info Solutions. He also stands out in intended air yards relative to his tight end peers, ranking fourth at the position with 134, trailing only the trio of Mike Gesicki, Hayden Hurst, and Hunter Henry. Thomas doesn’t have to do too much to hit value at his salary, but there’s legitimate blow-up potential at his current usage in a plus matchup.
Joe Burrow (QB – CIN): $6,200 at Eagles
A.J. Green (WR – CIN): $6,000 at Eagles
Tyler Boyd (WR – CIN): $5,900 at Eagles
Miles Sanders (RB – PHI): $6,400 vs. Bengals
The Bengals have a few extra days to prepare for their trip to Philadelphia after playing in the Thursday Night Football game in Week 2. Burrow hasn’t looked overwhelmed by the bright lights in his rookie season, and he aired it out a bananas 61 times last week, completing 37 passes for 316 yards and three touchdowns. Further, after rushing for 46 yards and a score in the opener, he rushed seven times for 19 yards last week. He could be in store for another big workload passing with the Bengals serving as five-point underdogs, but he could also get a bump in plays as a result of facing an up-tempo offense with the Eagles playing the eighth-fastest situation neutral pace, according to Football Outsiders.
As for his stack partners, Boyd has been the better performer of the two wideouts with a 7-72-1 line on eight targets last week. Green leads the team in targets with 22, but he’s hauled in only eight of them for 80 yards. An explosion could be on the horizon, though, as Green’s 330 intended air yards are the most by a 21-yard margin over Calvin Ridley’s 309.
On the other side of the three-man Bengals stack is Sanders. The versatile back was sidelined in Week 1, but he made up for a lost week by rushing for 95 yards and a score on 20 carries and hauling in three of seven targets for 36 receiving yards. He did lose a fumble on the opening drive, but it didn’t impact his playing time or workload.
He has a cushy matchup this week. Football Outsiders ranks the Bengals 25th in rush defense DVOA. No one’s allowed more rushing yards to backs than the 358 that the Bengals have coughed up, and they’ve also allowed four scores on the ground and one more through the air. Sanders is an excellent standalone play and should be fairly chalky, but I love using him in this stack — or a modified version with Burrow and only one of Green or Boyd.
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