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DraftKings Thursday Night Showdown: Buccaneers at Panthers

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The NFL season is entering Week 2 and that means another Showdown Slate Thursday night on DraftKings. For those new to DraftKings Showdown contests, make sure you check out some general strategy for Showdown contests in my article from last week.  For this piece, I will show you the best plays and break down this particular matchup between the Buccaneers and Panthers. But before the breakdown will we also recap the winning lineup from the last week’s Showdown Slate Millionaire Maker and see what conclusions for roster construction we can use as we progress for Week 2.

The DraftKings Showdown Recap

The best practice is to always approach the captain spot with a receiver or receiving running back which user Gamby35 did with Allen Robinson. Interestingly enough this lineup avoided the QB-WR stack in favor of playing the Packers DST. That proved sharp because of the turnovers produced by Mitchell Trubisky. Robinson was still also very chalky even in the captain’s spot at 37.9% ownership. Again the Packers offense won the game so there were four players on Green Bay versus two from Chicago. Whichever team you think will win the game, is the team you want to favor the majority screenshot 20190906 025027of your players from. Can be used as a tie-breaker if you are debating between two players at the same position that are similarly priced. The last takeaway as well is that this lineup was not super contrarian, so perhaps do not always press to try and stand out with suboptimal plays. At least in Week 1, that was not the case to win. Also, note only one quarterback is in the lineup, unlike two which many users will try to jam in.

Thursday Night Preview


Cam Newton – $11,000, Jameis Winston – $10,400

For those of you hoping for a shootout Week 2…well, I think our chances are higher than in Week 1. It’s an interesting matchup for the two quarterbacks because they are both coming off homes losses where they scored less than 11 fantasy points respectively. Historically neither of these quarterbacks has performed particularly well against their divisional opponents. Newton’s last two home games against the Buccaneers have averaged out to 204 passing yards and just one passing touchdown. Winston’s last two road games against Carolina have averaged out to 293 passing yards and one touchdown. There is also much more negative buzz surrounding Winston after his three-interception performance in Week 1, so he should garner lower ownership. Ultimately the deciding factor in using Winston over Newton should be because the Buccaneers’ offense operates through Winston’s arm whereas with Carolina the offense runs heavily through Christian McCaffrey and the running game. Newton’s floor is also not as high as it once was as there’s a chance that we don’t see as much running from the quarterback for the remainder of 2019.

Running Backs

Christian McCaffrey – $12,400, Peyton Barber – $5,400, Ronald Jones – $5,000, Dare Ogunbowale – $2,400

Christian McCaffrey is going to be in every single lineup, so just eat the chalk and move on. He is too heavily involved in the offense to not be in a roster. McCaffrey registered a touch on 45% of the Panthers’ total offensive snaps. He is locked in.

For the Buccaneers, the snaps last week were split with all three backs seeing between 30-40% of the total snaps. Ogunbowale was the most used in the passing game (four reception on five targets), and in DraftKings scoring formats offers the most value at his price versus Jones and Barber who have never been featured pass-catchers. Barber in three games against the Panthers has scored just once and never surpassed 51 yards rushing. I’d expect Jones to led the Buccaneers in carries again, but again his upside is limited without seeing much work in the passing game.

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Wide Receivers

Mike Evans – $9,600, D.J. Moore – $8,000, Curtis Samuel – $7,000, Chris Godwin – $8,600, Chris Hogan – $2,000, Breshad Perriman – $4,600, Jarius Wright – $4,400

Similar to the quarterback position we saw disappointing games across the board from the two top Carolina receivers in Week 1 and a disappointing performance from Mike Evans. Now Mike Evans was dealing with the flu, which may have contributed to his poor performance in Week 1. However, the cornerback matchup against James Bradberry does not look great. This game projects to see much more targets funneled to Chris Godwin making him the ideal captain in the Showdown Slate. In Godwin’s last game against the Panthers, he posted a 5-101-1 stat line. Perriman is going to see a lot of Donte Jackson who is one of the fewer cornerbacks who possesses the elite speed to keep pace with Perriman so he is not a player to target.

As for the Carolina receivers, we saw Moore receive the majority of targets over Samuel in Week 1. However both ran the same routes (41), and Samuel saw more work from the slot. But this could easily switch in Week 2, so don’t just chase the production from last week. Moore in two games last year against the Buccaneers historically bad defense totaled just five receptions for 60 yards on ten targets. Samuel on the other hand in is last two games against Tampa Bay totaled ten receptions for 128 yards and one touchdown on a whopping 18 targets. Go Samuel over Moore in Showdown Thursday night at lower ownership.

Tight Ends

Greg Olsen – $6,200, O.J. Howard – $6,600, Cameron Brate – $4000

For tight ends, we need opportunities and Olsen absolutely dominated that percentage in Week 1; To go along with his nine targets. On paper as well it appears that the Buccaneers did a great job containing opposing tight ends from last week, but two touchdowns to George Kittle were called back due to penalties. Speaking of touchdowns being called back Brate also had a few touchdowns called back as well in Week 1. However, the upside is still with Howard in this spot. He caught two touchdowns the last time he played the Panthers. Brate has played in eight games against the Panthers and never surpassed 65 yards receiving or caught a touchdown.

Kickers/Defense/Special Teams

Joey Slye – $3,400, Matt Gay – $3,200, Panthers DST – $4,200, Buccaneers DST – $3,600

Again only play kickers if you are looking for safe points in a cash game for Showdown. They do not have enough upside to be effective in rosters in GPP lineups. As for defenses, the Panthers DST seems like they are in a smash spot against Jameis Winston, who seemingly will throw at least one interception. Over the past two seasons, Winston has played 12 road games; he was thrown a total of 19 interceptions and 14 fumbles in those games.

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