Updated: Nov 15, 2020
Welcome to week 10 of the NFL season! Each week, we’ll be previewing the main slate on DraftKings. Our philosophy with these selections is to provide you with solid floor plays with some upside to start your roster construction, with potential GPP pivots for even further upside in tournaments.
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If you're new to DFS, I'd recommend checking out our DFS 101 article before getting started, as it can give this column a lot more context.
If you'd like to see how I did in previous weeks, you can find that here:
Please note that the authors of this post are also players of daily fantasy sports, and the selections they make when creating their rosters may or may not include players listed below. You can find Derek Devereaux on DraftKings via the username DerekDevereaux.
This week’s lineup building beer of choice
For those of you skipping straight to Christmas, this beer is straight Christmas. Right up front, you get a taste that's, well, spruce-y, like you've got a taste of pine needles, but it's mixed in with a nice blend of citrus flavors and a big, hoppy finish. The way Black Husky describes it is 100% true: "...you’ll know you bulldozed through the forest and came out on the other side." Plus all their beer bottles have huskies on them.
All lines via Bovada, current as of Saturday afternoon.
Jacksonville at Green Bay -13.5, 47.5 total (opened at 55)
Washington at Detroit -3.5, 46 total (opened at 46.5)
Houston at Cleveland -4, 45.5 total (opened at 55.5) - weather concerns have plummeted this game
Philadelphia - 4 at NY Giants, 44.5 total (opened at 41.5)
Tampa Bay -6 at Carolina, 50.5 total (opened at 47)
LA Chargers at Miami -1.5, 48.5 total (opened at 47)
Denver at Las Vegas -3.5, 51 total (no change)
Buffalo at Arizona -3, 56.5 total (opened at 49)
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh -7.5, 45.5 total (opened at 49)
Seattle at LA Rams -2, 54.5 total (opened at 53.5)
San Francisco at New Orleans -10, 49 total (opened at 53.5)
Favorite games to target
There's two clear-cut great games to target, which are Buffalo/Arizona and Seattle/LA Rams. I think both will be popular on all sides. I also think New Orleans and Green Bay will both be popular in their games, obviously. That leaves us with some possible underownership in the Denver/Las Vegas game which could be worth a shot in GPPs, although both teams are relatively hard to stack.
Before we start...a bit of roster construction talk
Mike Davis is the minimum price for a running back ($4000). DraftKings was asleep at the wheel, assuming Christian McCaffrey was going to be immune to injury after returning. He's a free space in cash, and I'd consider him a free space in GPPs, too, but you can always decide to fade someone when ownership will be this high (I'd bet he ends up over 50% in GPPs). Know this, though - if you are fading Mike Davis in GPPs, you're doing it to build a completely different roster construction, not to replace him with someone else who is that cheap at RB. Otherwise you won't have a true chance of beating out those lineups that have him. Across the board, pricing feels soft. This is a really great week to be a cash game player.
Kyler Murray, $8000, ARI (vs. BUF)
Would you play a running back who has a rushing touchdown in 7 of 8 games this year? While also averaging 68 yards per game as well? That rushing average is a 12 point floor, and for $8000, of course you wouldn't do that for just a running back. By Kyler is throwing the ball nearly 35 times a game as well. In the highest total on the slate, at home, doesn't this just feel obvious?
Justin Herbert, $6600, LAC (at MIA)
What a bonafide stud. 40+ pass attempts in three straight games, and he's not afraid to run a little bit on top of it. He's clicking on all cylinders, and the aforementioned Kyler Murray just toasted this team last week - with Hopkins doing nothing to help. DraftKings refuses to push him above $7000, but he easily belongs there. This is a misprice.
Alex Smith, $5200, WAS (at DET)
This is the lowest I would go at QB this week, but why not Alex? Historically an efficient passer, he's going up against a Lions D that hasn't stopped anyone all year. He's got an elite weapon out wide, his tight end has a #revengegame narrative, his running backs are all pass catchers. I can't imagine he's going to be that popular, so perhaps a sneaky GPP dart throw?
Potential GPP pivots: Josh Allen ($7500, at ARI), Jared Goff ($6500, vs. SEA), Drew Lock ($5500, at LV)
Running Back - exculding the aforementioned Mike Davis
Alvin Kamara, $8200, NO (vs. SF)
There's only two running backs above $7000 on the slate, with Aaron Jones ($7100) being the other. Quite frankly, I don't think you need to be up here, but if you have the salary and you're picking one, I would go with Alvin. Both are in fantastic matchups, both do lose snaps to their backups (Jamaal Williams is expected to return this week), but I like Alvin's receiving floor better and he's not coming off an injury himself. We'll also see another reason why when we get to wide receivers...
Giovani Bernard, $5400, CIN (at PIT)
Yes, I'm jumping all the way down to Gio as the next pick. From Aaron Jones down to here feels like such a dead zone, which, for GPPs, makes for a lot of intriguing plays in that area that should go underowned (listing them below!) But with no Joe Mixon again, we should get another 18 touches from Gio in a sneakily above-average matchup - Pittsburgh has been leaky against the run over the past couple of weeks. I'm not betting on the talent here, just the opportunity, and there's clear opportunity.
Duke Johnson, $5000, HOU (at CLE)
Speaking of not betting on the talent...Duke Johnson revenge game with his primary competition hitting IR! It is totally possible that they don't even feed Duke most of the carries and surprise everyone by giving Buddy Howell 12 carries, but we're at least being buoyed by theoretical passing targets. As mentioned before, this total is plummeting thanks to some bad weather, which could limit his upside, so this might be a spot to fade in GPPs. But we have to look at the potential volume at this price for cash games, and make a determination as we get closer to lineup lock how confident we are in Duke.
Potential GPP pivots: Aaron Jones ($7100, vs. JAX), Miles Sanders ($6400, at NYG), Antonio Gibson ($5600, at DET)
There are a lot of guys you can play at wide receiver this week, to the point that I think this is the only true spot that could make or break your lineups this week. And they're scattered all across different price ranges. Forgive me for mentioning more than normal.
Davante Adams, $9000, GB (vs. JAX)
But Derek...they're nearly 14 point favorites at home? Why would you want to play the passing game and not the running game, especially when the running back is very good and $1900 cheaper? Let me tell you why:
In week 9, the Packers won by 17 points, and Davante Adams had a 10-173-1 stat line on 12 targets (36.3 DK points)
In week 7, the Packers won by 15 on the road, and Davante Adams had a 13-196-2 stat line on 16 targets (47.6 DK points)
He has six touchdowns in his last three games. First and goal at the three? Play action boot to Davante.
It doesn't matter what they are favored by. Rodgers gets Davante his, and then I look at the line and say, well, it probably means everyone else in the passing game doesn’t get there. Clear cut WR1 to me.
Cooper Kupp, $6900, LAR (vs. SEA)
Him and Robert Woods should both feast against this atrocious Seattle passing defense. But give me Kupp, who's target share tends to be a bit more consistent than Woods' share. Plus he's well overdue for another touchdown. Why not here?
Brandon Aiyuk, $5700, SF (at NO)
This kid's a playmaker. Backup QBs tend to get the ball in the hands of their playmakers. Outside of Marshon Lattimore, who has been somewhat inconsistent at times this year, the Saints get beat through the air. I expect targets and usage to flow his way in this matchup, given they'll likely be playing from behind.
Curtis Samuel, $4900, CAR (vs. TB)
This is who you should consider in lineups you are not playing Mike Davis. His DK points look more impressive than they actually should be, pushed ahead by a bunch of touchdowns, but Matt Rhule made a point to get him more involved in the offense towards the end of the first Mike Davis RB1 timeframe, including some work rushing in the red zone. It's a total dart throw, but the amount of leverage off Mike Davis you get here makes it worth it - especially if he vultures more scoring opportunities.
Potential GPP pivots: Stefon Diggs ($7500, at ARI), Terry McLaurin ($6800, at DET), Christian Kirk ($5700, vs. BUF), Tee Higgins ($5500, at PIT)
Noah Fant, $4900, DEN (at LV)
I fully expect Waller ($5900) to be the most popular TE on the slate, and being someone who plays him a ton, I get it. But for a grand cheaper and theoretically much lower ownership, why not play a tight end who gets maybe one or two less targets but is consistent enough with some upside? Plus, his primary competition or routes and targets just went on IR.
Dallas Goedert, $4200, PHI (at NYG)
He had a lackluster comeback from his ankle injury in week 7, but it wasn't because of the injury, given he played nearly 90% of the snaps. Zach Ertz is still on IR. We've seen what Goedert is capable of even with a healthy Ertz, so why can't we trust him to do it with less competition? Yes, this is the lowest total on the slate, but that doesn't stop us from trusting that volume should be there and touchdown upside, too.
Potential GPP pivots: Evan Engram ($4500, vs. PHI), Logan Thomas #revengegame ($3300, at DET)
You know the deal by now. Play whoever you want, but make it the last spot you fill in on your roster.
Good luck, and may your screens be green!