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NFL Week 18 DFS Value Plays: Targets & Advice (2023)

Welcome to Week 18 of the NFL DFS Value Plays series.

With the redraft season over for most players, more people are turning their attention to DFS to scratch that fantasy itch. This week, we break down a 13-game main slate. Week 18 can be tricky for DFS purposes with so many teams choosing to sit key players. Reading the reports about potential inactives and sifting through some tea leaves is highly encouraged for this slate. Fortunately, some of that work has been done for you here.

This article is aimed at deciphering values in the lobbies. It is not meant to be a roster builder. Instead, it will help identify some players priced below their production potential based on various factors for both DraftKings and FanDuel.

Let’s get into it.

NFL Week 18 DFS Value Plays: Targets & Advice (2023)

Quarterbacks

Tyrod Taylor (NYG): $5300 vs. PHI (DraftKings)

In two of his three complete starts this season, Taylor has scored 21+ DK points. Including 319 passing yards, one touchdown, one interception and 40 rushing yards this past week against the Los Angeles Rams. Taylor is a veteran who takes care of the ball well, is accurate, and adds upside with some rushing.

The Eagles surrender the most fantasy points to quarterbacks, so even if they don’t rest their starters, it is a fantastic matchup for Taylor and his dual-threat capabilities. This game means more to the Eagles than it does to the Giants, who have already been eliminated from playoff contention. So expect the Eagles to hang some points on the board, putting Taylor in catch-up mode.

Taylor is more of a GPP contest play than cash this week.

Nick Mullens (MIN): $7100 vs. DET (FanDuel)

Mullens, like many other gunslingers before him, can be prone to turnovers. He also can be prone to challenge downfield creating big plays when he connects. In two full starts, he is averaging 19.83 FanDuel points per contest, going for more than 300 yards in one and more than 400 in the other. He threw four touchdowns and six touchdowns combined in those two starts. His proclivity for the big play also helps elevate the receivers around him.

The Lions are ranked as the third-most favorable matchup for quarterbacks by FanDuel’s ranking system. Over their past five games, they have allowed seven passing touchdowns and 285.6 passing yards per game. In a divisional matchup, expect a competitive game that could feature some back-and-forth scoring.

Mullens has plenty of risk and is therefore more suited to GPP contests.

Running Backs

Zamir White (LV): $6000 vs. DEN (DraftKings)

At the time of this writing, Josh Jacobs is being listed as a game-time decision but has yet to be officially ruled out. However, he did log DNPs throughout the week and is heading to free agency after the season. So the current expectation is for White to make his fourth start as the primary back. In his three starts, White is averaging 19.6 rush attempts, 95 rushing yards and scored one rushing touchdown. He also just logged his best game as a receiver out of the backfield by hauling in five of six targets for 35 yards.

The Broncos allow the second-most fantasy production to running backs, including three rushing touchdowns over their last five games. They have allowed the second-most rushing yards and the eighth-most rushing touchdowns to the position.

White can be comfortably used in both cash and GPP contests this week.

James Conner (ARI): $7300 vs. SEA (FanDuel)

Conner strolls into this matchup with a four-game streak that includes six total touchdowns. He has not been under 16 FD points in any of those contests and is averaging 21.1 points per game in that span. He has been the most reliable offensive weapon for the Cardinals.

The Seahawks allow the fourth-most fantasy points per game to running backs. Over the past four games, they’ve allowed a total of five rushing touchdowns and an average of 141 rushing yards per game. The stage is set for a good game on the ground for Mr. Conner.

He can used in both cash and GPP contests and is a good bet to take his scoring streak to five games.

Wide Receivers

Brandin Cooks (DAL): $5200 vs. WAS (DraftKings)

Cooks has been inconsistent at times throughout the season. He averages 10.7 DK points per game and has scored 15 or more in five games this season, including this past week against Detroit. Three of his seven touchdowns have come over the past five games. When his number gets called, Cooks has delivered.

The Commanders allow the second-most fantasy points to wide receivers this season. Since their week 14 bye, they have allowed two receivers to eclipse the 100-yard mark and five receiving touchdowns.

With aspirations of clinching the NFC East and locking up the NFC’s number two seed, the Cowboys have plenty to play for. Dak Prescott and company should come out swinging and while CeeDee Lamb ($9300) is the preferred cash game option, Cooks slides in as an upside play for GPP contests.

Cedric Tillman (CLE): $5300 vs. CIN (FanDuel)

There is not a lot of statistical data to point to Tillman being a strong play for this slate. However, addition by subtraction could prove to be in the rookie’s favor for this matchup. Amari Cooper has already been ruled out. Elijah Moore is still listed as questionable coming back from a concussion. Tight end David Njoku does not carry an injury designation but may be used more sparingly as the Browns are choosing to rest some of their questionable players. That puts Tillman as a potential starter in a positive matchup.

The Bengals allow the 10th-most fantasy points to wide receivers and have allowed the fifth-most receiving yards this season.

The matchup is good, and the potential usage is trending upward. Granted, there is plenty of risk in this play. Tillman should be used in max-entry GPP contests.

Tight Ends

Dallas Goedert (PHI): $5100 vs. NYG (DraftKings)

Over his past three games, Goedert has seen nine targets twice, and another six in this past week’s loss to the Cardinals. He also scored for the third time this season in that matchup. He is currently averaging 10.6 DK points per game.

The Giants have limited tight end production more so than other positions, but still rank middle of the pack against the position. In three of their past four games, they’ve allowed 60 or more receiving yards and two scores to tight ends.

As previously mentioned, the Eagles still have something to play for, so expecting Goedert to retain his role is expected. He can be used in both cash and GPP contests for this slate.

Taysom Hill (NO): $5500 vs. ATL (FanDuel)

Hill is among the most maddening players, at any position (since he plays them all), in the NFL for fantasy purposes. However, his all-purpose approach to the game makes him a volatile option that has boom potential as he could notch a score as a passer, receiver, or rusher of the football. He has six TE1 finishes this season.

The Falcons allow the seventh-most fantasy points to tight ends and an average of 53.8 receiving yards per game.

The matchup is positive and the player brings versatility to the matchup that could pay off nicely at a mid-range value in salary. Hill lines up better as a GPP contest entry than in cash games.

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John Hesterman is a featured writer and Expert Consensus Ranker at FantasyPros. He also writes for DynastyLeagueFootball.com. For more from John, check out his archive and follow him on Twitter/X @John_Hesterman.

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