NFL DFS: Week 12 DraftKings Values
It’s an interesting week in NFL DFS, with zero teams on bye and six teams playing on Thanksgiving. Regardless, your cash game goals should still remain the same.
If you’re playing cash games on DraftKings, your goal for each player on your roster should be to score three times his salary.
For example, Carlos Hyde is $4,800 on DraftKings this week. For Hyde to score three times his salary, he would need to produce 14.4 points (4.800 x 3).
Finding players who will score three times their salary can be difficult, but a stable set of projections should be your starting point.
Last year, Gridiron Experts’ projections were very efficient in finding these players — we’ll call them our Gridiron 3X.
Our projections are posted every Tuesday morning by Jody Smith — you can find them here.
In the table below, you’ll see how often the average player surpassed 3X his salary last season — only players who were projected for more than 5.0 points were included to remove injured players and those with minor roles). Next to it, you’ll see how often our Gridiron 3X guys surpassed 3X their salary. The difference between the two is in the final column:
So who fits the criteria in Week 12?
Drew Brees, $7100, Projected 3.9x: When you roster Drew Brees when he takes the field in New Orleans, you know you’ll have a player with the highest ceiling at his position. In five games at home this season, he’s averaging 27.92 DraftKings points per game. In fact, his lowest DK total at home this season is 20.7 points, giving him a supremely high floor for cash games. Also, his salary has dropped $500 this week so we’ll get to put him in our lineups at a discounted price. It’s tough to find a better option at QB this week.
Josh McCown, $5000, Projected 3.9x: This play is more about salary than actual ability. Josh McCown isn’t a great real life quarterback, but he manages to put up fantasy numbers despite his reckless playing style. Cody Kessler has already been ruled out for Week 12, which means McCown will be a min-price starting quarterback on Sunday against the New York Giants. He’ll need 15 DraftKings points for 3X value this week, a number he’s hit in 90 percent of his games with 15 or more pass attempts since the beginning of last season. He’s a fine play if you’re going cheap at QB in Week 12.
Carson Palmer, $5300, Projected 3.9x: For just $5300 this week, you can roster a quarterback in a game with one of the highest Vegas totals on the board (50.5). Palmer hasn’t been the MVP candidate that he was last season, but he’s still managed 293 passing yards per game without much help from his receiving crew outside of Larry Fitzgerald. Fortunately, he’ll travel to Atlanta this weekend to face the defense that allows the most DraftKings points to quarterbacks this season (22.1). He’s riskier on the road, but he’s still an excellent bet to hit 3X value.
Other Gridiron 3X QBs: Dak Prescott, Aaron Rodgers, Brock Osweiler, Ryan Tannehill, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Andy Dalton, Kirk Cousins, Sam Bradford, Colin Kaepernick, Carson Wentz, Jameis Winston, Russell Wilson, Joe Flacco, Tyrod Taylor, Matthew Stafford, Blake Bortles, Cam Newton, Derek Carr, Marcus Mariota, Trevor Siemian, Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, Eli Manning, Jared Goff, Philip Rivers, Alex Smith, Ben Roethlisberger
Jeremy Hill, $3900, Projected 4.0x: Last week, Bengals’ RB Giovani Bernard tore his ACL and will miss the rest of the season. As a result, Jeremy Hill will get as much run as he can handle in the Cincinnati backfield. Averaging just 27 snaps per game this season, expect that number to nearly double in the coming weeks. He’s in line for 20-plus touches in a tough matchup with the Ravens, but his salary doesn’t require him to score too many points to be useful in cash games. At just $3900, he’ll need 11.7 DraftKings points — that’s only 0.59 DK points per touch, which is much lower than his season-long average of 0.79 points/touch.[wlm_ismember]Carlos Hyde, $4800, Projected 3.5x: Finally fully recovered from his shoulder injury, Carlos Hyde handled 22 touches in a loss to the Patriots last Sunday. In games where he’s played a full complement of snaps, he’s averaging 19.6 touches per game despite the 49ers’ 1-9 record. He’s uber-talented and is productive regardless of matchup or game script, which is hard to find in a running back for $4800. He’ll play in Miami this weekend with expected winds of 15-plus miles-per-hour, so he could get even more work than normal if the passing game is hindered by the weather.[/wlm_ismember]
Thomas Rawls, $5700, Projected 3.7x: Christine Michael is cut and C.J. Prosise is out for a while with a shoulder injury, so Thomas Rawls will the last man standing in the Seahawks’ backfield when Seattle plays Tampa Bay on Sunday. He played 40 snaps and touched the ball 17 times in last week’s win over the Eagles, so it looks like he’s ready to resume a full workload after missing much of this season with leg and ankle injuries. With Russell Wilson healthy and the Seahawks’ offense rolling, Rawls should have numerous red zone opportunities over the second half of the season. As a three-down back with goal line work on a great offense, don’t hesitate to stick Rawls in your lineup at just $5700.[wlm_nonmember]
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Other Gridiron 3X RBs: Chris Ivory, Isaiah Crowell, Melvin Gordon, Rob Kelley, Le’Veon Bell, Latavius Murray, Tim Hightower, Kenneth Dixon, Jay Ajayi, David Johnson, Theo Riddick, Lamar Miller, James Starks, Darren Sproles, Rashad Jennings, Frank Gore, Ezekiel Elliott, Jordan Howard
Dorial Green-Beckham, $3000, Projected 4.0x: Last week against the Seahawks, Dorial Green-Beckham played a career-high 64 snaps and hauled in five receptions for 54 yards and a touchdown. He’s one of the most physically imposing receivers in the league, but he’s still young and hasn’t put it all together yet. This week, he gets to face a Green Bay defense on Monday night that is decimated by injuries in their secondary. They’ve been torched by Tennessee and Washington in consecutive weeks, so this is a great opportunity for DGB to continue his emergence in the Eagles’ offense. You’ll have to play a slate with the Monday night game, but his minimum price is extremely attractive.
DeVante Parker, $4700, Projected 3.9x: Speaking of second-year wide receivers who are finally looking the part, DeVante Parker has produced back to back games of 4X his salary and he’s seen a modest salary bump to $4700. He’s totaled 18 targets in the last two games, effectively taking over the number one wide receiver role in the Dolphins’ offense. They’ll host the 49ers this weekend, who can’t stop anybody from scoring. Parker is both a safe play and high-ceiling option for all formats in Week 12.
Brandon LaFell, $4600, Projected 3.2x: A.J. Green is out for at least the next four weeks with a hamstring injury, leaving Brandon LaFell and rookie Tyler Boyd as the top two targets in the Bengals’ passing game. He saw nine targets last week after Green left the game and has seen 50 percent more red zone targets than Boyd, making him the preferred option of the two. The Bengals are 4.5 point underdogs to the Ravens on Sunday, so if they fall behind, it’s conceivable that LaFell commands double digits targets. Baltimore has allowed eight touchdowns in the last four weeks to wide receivers, making this a great matchup for LaFell at just $4600.
Other Gridiron 3X WRs: Pierre Garcon, Braxton Miller, Brandin Cooks, Jordan Matthews, Doug Baldwin, Anquan Boldin, Cordarrelle Patterson, Jamison Crowder, Jeremy Kerley, Marqise Lee, Seth Roberts, Adam Humphries
Jared Cook, $2500, Projected 4.5x: Jared Cook returned from an ankle injury last week and was the Packers’ leading receiver against the Redskins, catching 6 passes for 102 yards and a touchdown. We’ve been burned by Cook many times in the past, but it’s hard to do much damage when your DraftKings salary is only $2500. Salaries were released before Cook’s big Sunday night game, so you can expect massive ownership on Cook regardless of which contest types you play this weekend. In cash games, it’s a no brainer — he’s incredibly likely to score 7.5 DK points and 3X his salary given the Packers’ lack of a running game.
Will Tye, $3000, Projected 3.0x: Since taking over as the starter three weeks ago, Will Tye has averaged 6.7 targets and 3.7 receptions per game while playing at least 45 snaps in each of those games. Now, he’ll face the Cleveland Browns, who have allowed the most DraftKings points to opposing tight ends this season (18.3 per game). His new role and upcoming matchup make Tye an excellent option in cash games if you’re playing the Sunday-only slate and a fantastic pivot from Cook if you’re playing Sunday-Monday GPPs.
Zach Ertz, $3700, Projected: 3.5x: As mentioned in DGB’s write-up above, the Green Bay Packers are missing defenders at every level, which bodes well for Zach Ertz in Week 12. Ertz recorded 6-35-1 against Seattle last week, but should have had a second long touchdown that was called back due to an illegal formation. He’s notched at least six receptions in each of his last three games and has become a trusted target for rookie Carson Wentz. His price doesn’t really reflect his usage in the offense, so get some exposure to Ertz on Monday night.
Other Gridiron 3X TEs: Travis Kelce, Jason Witten, Charles Clay, Coby Fleener, Gary Barnidge, C.J. Fiedorowicz, Kyle Rudolph, Ladarius Green, Vance McDonald, Logan Paulsen, Cameron Brate, Dennis Pitta, Eric Ebron, Lance Kendricks[/wlm_ismember]
Brian has been playing fantasy football for 16 years and commissioned his first fantasy league at age 12. When he’s not writing about sports, you can find him playing every daily fantasy sport and participating in high stakes fantasy football contests. Brian won more than 1,000 NFL contests on FanDuel last season and has won multiple league championships in the Footballguys Player Championship contest. A graduate of the University of Maryland, Brian usually spends his winters agonizing over Terrapins basketball. When the weather is warmer, Brian is known for his receiving prowess in flag football leagues on the National Mall in Washington, DC.