Super Bowl LIV Daily Fantasy Breakdown
We have made it to the Super Bowl, and that means it’s time for another Showdown Game this Sunday night on DraftKings. For those newer to DraftKings Showdown contests, make sure you check out some general strategy for Showdown contests in my article from back from Week 1. While most people are searching for free betting tips for prop bets and Super Bowl squares, I thought I would create something for the diehard daily fantasy junkies of the world and focus on the Super Bowl DraftKings single-game DFS slate this week. For this piece, I will show you the best plays and break down this particular matchup between the San Fransico 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs Chiefs. Hopefully, this one is more thrilling than last year’s Super Bowl.
San Fransico 49ers vs Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City -1 | Over/Under 53.5
Patrick Mahomes – $12,600, Jimmy Garoppolo -$8,000
It should come to no surprise that in games that the total exceeds 51 or more points Patrick Mahomes puts on an absolute clinic. Before the playoffs, in the divisional playoff game and championship game Mahomes scored (41 and 35 DraftKings points respectively), Mahomes’ splits can be seen in the tweet below. He is clearly the best fantasy quarterback in the game; hence he is the most expensive player.
In the least surprising stat of the year. Patrick Mahomes fantasy output is much better in games with a total above 51 vs games below 51 the past two seasons. pic.twitter.com/7vos93VLs6
— Al Smizzle (@AlZeidenfeld) January 7, 2020
As for Jimmy Garoppolo, he is the seventh-most expensive player on DraftKings. The narrative here is that Garoppolo is entering this game very similar to how Ryan Tannehill did in the conference game. The Titans were just relying on the run game and Tannehill had thrown for just 160 yards total on 31 passing attempts. In the championship game alone Tannehill went 21-31 for 209 yards and two touchdowns. If you want to be a contrarian look to roster Garoppolo off the recency bias. Assuming that this game is slightly more competitive than his last few games, 300 yards and three touchdowns from Jimmy G is not that far out of reach. The 49ers averaged 28 passing attempts per game this season, and Garoppolo has yet to hit that threshold over his last four contests. Tannehill was forced to throw knowing that the Chiefs were going to put up points so I expect something similar for Garropolo.
Additionally, Mahomes will be facing his toughest matchup to date in a long time. The healthy 49ers defense has allowed the lowest yards per pass attempt this season overall (5.2), so it is hard to confidently project a ceiling game from Mahomes. Via FootballOutsiders the 49ers rank fifth overall in weighted defense, second in pass defense and eleventh in run defense. In the playoffs, the Chiefs played Houston (26th) and Tennesee (21st) ranks versus the pass. They closed the season versus Los Angeles (20th). They have not played a pass defense like the 49ers in a recent while. With pass-rusher Dee Ford in the lineup (12 games) the 49ers have allowed just an average of 15.5 points per game. The fantasy gap between Mahomes and Garoppolo is closer than you might think for the Super Bowl.
Damien Williams – $9,800, Raheem Mostert – $9,400 Tevin Coleman – $6,400, Kyle Juszczyk – $1,800, Matt Breida – $3,200, Jeff Wilson – $1,500
Damien Williams is the third-most-expensive player on DraftKings. I tend to favor rostering pass-catching running backs in the captain spot due to their path to touchdowns. Williams has been getting all the carries and snaps in the Chiefs backfield since returning so I like him a lot. 49ers are weaker versus the run.
I do think there is a significant edge when it comes to the 49ers’ backfield. Everybody is going to want to roster Raheem Mostert as the perceived starting running back on the 49ers. However, it was just after the divisional playoffs that Tevin Coleman looked like the emerging starter. That ultimately did not come to fruition after his injury, but he looks probably to play in the Super Bowl. Either way, we know the weakness of the Chiefs is their run defense ranking fourth-worst via Football Outsiders. The Chiefs are also not great versus running backs in the passing game. They allowed the fourth-most receptions, most targets, most yards, sixth-most receiving touchdowns, and sixth-most red-zone targets to running backs. Coleman has seen the most consistent work as a pass-catcher this season.
The 49ers ranked number three overall in points scored in the 1st Qtr, with at least one touchdown scored in their last five games in the 1st Qtr. SF led the NFL in rushing touchdowns per game (1.6).
KC has fallen behind by double-digit points in their last three playoff games.
— Andrew Erickson™ (@AndrewErickson_) January 25, 2020
Also, keep in mind the 49ers have one of the best fullbacks in the NFL. The 49ers this season had a 54% success rate when running from 21-personnel averaging 5.4 yards per attempt. They also ran it 32% of the time (#1 in the NFL). The Kansas City defense versus that personnel grouping allowed a 51% success rate and 5.5 yards per carry. Kyle Juszczyk is sneaky on DraftKings at his price. Same with Jeff Wilson should Coleman be limited in any way or inactive altogether.
KC allowed the fourth-most receptions, most targets, most yards, sixth-most receiving touchdowns, and sixth-most red-zone targets to running backs this season.
Breakdown of SF RB usage via @FantasyDataNFL
Kyle Juszczyk had most receiving yards. pic.twitter.com/Fl4KnPVnhX
— Andrew Erickson™ (@AndrewErickson_) January 25, 2020
Tyreek Hill – $11,000, Deebo Samuel – $7,600, Sammy Watkins – $7,000, Emmanuel Sanders – $5,200, Kendrick Bourne – $3,400, Mecole Hardman – $2,200
I just cannot seem to get off the Mecole Hardman bandwagon. And after a week where he out-snapped and ran more routes than Demarcus Robinson I am willing again to go right back to the explosive rookie at his very cheap cost. He also returns kicks so there is another avenue of upside he can bring. If I am paying up for any receiver it is going to be Tyreek Hill. He just needs one to make a play and Richard Sherman can definitely be beaten deep. We also have an entire season of Watkins underperforming so I am not going to let one game where he caught one deep pass that made the big difference to sway me in heavily rostering him even after a seven-catch nine-target game. He had nine targets and five catches combined over his last three games prior. Watkins is not the play, especially in this matchup.
The biggest games that the Chiefs have allowed have primarily been to slot receivers. On the season the 49ers throw between the numbers 64% of the time, which is the most in the NFL. This is another reason to like Garoppolo in this spot along with his receivers. It makes sense to have some exposure to both Samuel and Sanders, but in the Super Bowl, I will lean with the veteran playing in his third Super Bowl. Keep in mind that Sanders has already faced the Chiefs this season and is familiar with this opponent from his days with Denver. Two of Garoppolo’s biggest games correlated to the two best fantasy games for Sanders this season. Still, Samuel has some additional upside in the fact that he does receive rushing attempts.
Travis Kelce – $9,600, George Kittle – $8,400, Blake Bell – $800, Ross Dwelley – $400
The 49ers defense is one of the best defenses in the league in defending the tight end position allowing the sixth-fewest points to the position during the 2019 regular season. Meanwhile, the Chiefs defense allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to the position during the regular season; including the second-most receptions and targets. For me, Kittle seems the clear value play especially after being held under five fantasy points in back to back weeks. That is his lowest output over any two-game stretch this season. Again working the middle of the field is what the 49ers do best and that is often done through their dynamic tight end.
Chiefs -$3,000, 49ers – $3,600, Harrison Butker -$4,200, Robbie Gould – $4,000
For defenses/special teams overall, they are important in these single-game contests, but I do prefer the 49ers over the Chiefs. I think the 49ers will ultimately win the game, and that will most likely come due to sacks and turnover they are able to force. With the Chiefs projected to be pass-heavy regardless of game script, there should be more opportunities for the 49ers defense to generate pressure. Whereas Kansas City has the better secondary group the 49ers have the better pass rush unit.
On both teams, I think that the kickers have value in this game. Butker was the number one-scoring fantasy kicker during the 2019 regular season and Gould ranked in top-seven in points per game (he missed three games). Both the Chiefs and 49ers kickers attempted kicks at the highest rates in the NFL this season. 2.2 attempts per game for KC and 2.4 attempts per game for SF. Both made on average 1.9 attempts per game. The value could be in Gould who has a lower price and will probably see projected lower ownership. He has scored at least nine fantasy in six straight weeks. Butker has failed to reach nine fantasy points in two of his last three outings.