FanDuel Single-Game Daily Fantasy Football Helper: Week 7 Monday Night
Week 7 is just about the rearview mirror, but worry not because we still have a Monday Night Football single-game slate left to scratch that DFS itch. For those unfamiliar with the single-game format, scoring is identical to its full roster cousin, except lineups consist of five flex spots, and kickers (remember them?) are an option in place of defense/special teams. The one twist? One of the five roster spots is your designated "MVP," who receives 1.5x his total fantasy points. Naturally, it's crucial that you choose your MVP carefully if you want to be at the top of the leaderboards when it's all said and done.
Monday's matchup features two losing teams in the New York Giants and Atlanta Falcons, but with a 52.5 over/under, this should be a fun one for DFS purposes. Let's run through some of tonight's top plays, starting with the best options to consider for your MVP slot.
Saquon Barkley ($17,000 on FanDuel): The obvious and no doubt popular MVP choice this evening will be Saquon Barkley, who draws everyone's favorite matchup for pass-catching running backs. Not only does Atlanta rank 31st in Adjusted Defensive Rushing Net Expected Points (NEP) per play, but even when including other teams' Week 7 numbers, opposing backfields have compiled the most receptions (53), second-most targets (66), and third-most receiving yards (425) against Atlanta. It doesn't get much better than this for Barkley, who's averaging 8.5 targets per game on a 22.2% target market share, and entered Week 7 with the most receptions (40) and receiving yards (373) among running backs. Throw in his 14.0 carries per game and the fact he hasn't fallen below 100 total yards in any game yet, and it's easy to see why he could be tonight's highest-scoring player.
Matt Ryan ($16,000): Of course, it's the Falcons who are the home favorites in this one, and if they're to achieve their lofty 28.00 implied total, chances are it will be off Matt Ryan's arm. In a lost season for Devonta Freeman -- who was placed on injured reserve last week -- Atlanta's running game has struggled, ranking 29th in yards per rush attempt (3.8) and 30th in rushing yards per game (86.0). As a result, it's no surprise Ryan has been doing all the heavy-lifting on offense and is averaging 326.0 passing yards per game with 14 touchdowns to just 2 interceptions. He should have a field day against a Giants defense that ranks 27th in Adjusted Defensive Passing NEP per play and is tied for last in sacks (7.0). Ryan's 25.5 FanDuel points per game is tops on the board and he's shown an impressive ceiling this season, even cracking over 40 points against the New Orleans Saints in Week 3.
Julio Jones ($14,000): The search for Julio Jones' first 2018 touchdown continues, and here he is in yet another stellar spot to finally get the monkey off his back. Even without the scores, his 15.7 FanDuel points per game sits behind only Ryan and Barkley on the slate, and he's still seeing elite volume with a 30.7% target market share. Even when including everyone's Week 7 stats, Jones ranks second in both receiving yards (708) and air yards. We've already seen Jones explode for over 140 yards three times this season, so if he can combine that kind of output with a trip to the end zone, he'll be swimming in fantasy points. While Jones figures to see high ownership in general tonight, chances are he won't be slotted as the MVP in as any many lineups as Barkley and Ryan.
Odell Beckham ($13,500): Jones has gotten all of the attention for his touchdown woes, but Odell Beckham has also struggled on that front, with his lone receiving score coming in Week 5 against the Carolina Panthers (along with a surprise passing touchdown). Like Jones, Beckham is still getting a lot of looks off a hefty 30.0% target market share and 11.5 targets per game, and we've seen Atlanta's pass defense get sliced and diced plenty this season, as they rank just 26th by numberFire's metrics, as they have allowed the fourth-most passing yards per game (295.8) and third-most passing touchdowns (16). Given the poor play of Eli Manning, Beckham is arguably the riskiest of this group to pick as your MVP, but he may come at slightly lower ownership, and we know the kind of ceiling he brings.
Eli Manning ($13,000): Groan. No, it doesn't make me happy to list Manning here either, but this is actually an affordable price for a quarterback on a single-game slate, and as noted above, this is certainly the right matchup for him to put up solid numbers. While it hasn't been pretty, the Giants are the pass-heaviest team in the league, and Manning has actually averaged the fourth-most FanDuel points per game on the slate (14.6). Manning's salary is low enough that you can conceivably roster both starting quarterbacks in a potential shootout, or pair him with Barkley to effectively lock up all of the Giants' touchdowns.
Austin Hooper ($8,500): Calvin Ridley ($12,000) and Mohamed Sanu ($10,500) have been banged up, but they'll be out there tonight and are certainly worthwhile secondary plays to pair with Ryan. But your best value of this receiving corp is tight end Austin Hooper, who has now seen double-digit targets in back-to-back games, compiling 9 receptions and 70-plus yards in each. He now has the second-highest target market share on the team (16.4%), and leads the team in both red zone targets (6) and targets inside the 10-yard line (4).
Ito Smith ($8,500): With Freeman out of the picture, we now have a near even backfield split between Ito Smith and Tevin Coleman ($11,000), and while either one could have a nice game against the Giants -- numberFire's 21st-ranked rush defense -- Smith comes in significantly cheaper. In Week 6, Coleman had the slight edge in snaps (57% to 46%), but Smith actually won the touch battle 13-11, logging 11 carries and catching 2-of-2 targets. Smith also leads the team with 14 red zone carries, although he and Coleman each have 5 attempts inside the 10-yard line. Despite the lack of success by Atlanta's running game, as 3.5-point home favorites, game script should favor both members of this backfield.
Aldrick Rosas ($9,000): With Matt Bryant ruled out for this game and the recently signed Giorgio Tavecchio not available on the slate, Aldrick Rosas is the only kicker we have at our disposal tonight. The Giants may be road underdogs, but if they can keep this one competitive, Rosas should get plenty of kicking opportunities if you need the salary relief. Playing in a dome never hurts either.
Kenyatta Storin is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Kenyatta Storin also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username yatters. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.