FanDuel Daily Fantasy Football Preseason Helper: Week 1
It's early August, and that means it's time for daily fantasy football on FanDuel.
Sure, the format is different, and we don't need to worry about salary cap, but when have you ever not wanted to play fantasy football?
So let's dig into the Week 1 preseason slate, an 11-gamer on Thursday, and be sure to check out a game-by-game breakdown of the slate on this week's Heat Check Fantasy Podcast.
Preseason DFS is a lot about reading news and not so much about making projections and identifying matchups. Players rotate after a few series or a quarter, and in some weeks, starters don't play at all.
It depends a lot on the team, but for Week 1, it's true that most starters won't see meaningful action. That means digging deep into the news and seeing which players project for big-time volume.
Quarterbacks to Target
Joe Webb - With Deshaun Watson unlikely to play much at all, the Houston Texans' depth chart is just A.J. McCarron, Webb, and newly-signed Jordan Ta'amu. McCarron is out for the preseason with a thumb injury, and Ta'amu signed yesterday. It's shaping up for a huge workload for Joe Webb against the Green Bay Packers. We saw Webb play 29 snaps in preseason Week 1 last year, when he split 50 snaps with Brandon Weeden. He should play more than 40 snaps comfortably.
Drew Lock - Lock was pretty rough in the Hall of Fame Game (7 for 11 for 34 yards) but is slated to play "a lot" in this game against the Seattle Seahawks. In that opener, he threw two passes at least 28 yards downfield but didn't complete either. The volume puts him in play as one of the best quarterback options on the slate.
Jared Stidham - Stidham figures to play a good bit for the New England Patriots, who had a joint practice with the Detroit Lions this week. That all but assures limited snaps for Tom Brady and fellow veteran Brian Hoyer. Hoyer, last year, played 60 snaps in the opener, via FantasyData.com, and that workload could go to the fourth-round pick.
Others to Consider: Trace McSorley, Josh Rosen, Tyler Bray
Running Backs to Target
Bo Scarbrough - The Alabama product was a seventh-round pick in the 2018 draft but has yet to play a regular-season snap. Scarbrough ran 24 times last year for 69 yards and a touchdown and caught 4 of 5 targets for 33 yards in the preseason. The Seahawks are thin at running back, as C.J. Prosise, J.D. McKissic, and Travis Homer are all hurt (Prosise and Homer are out, and McKissic is questionable).
Damien Harris - Patriots.com's Mike Dussault anticipates Harris will lead the Patriots in carries and also see receiving work. The third-rounder should be able to take advantage of the touches, especially with some receiving work. Few running backs see extended action, so Harris, by default, is near the top.
Jonathan Williams - Marlon Mack and Jordan Wilkins aren't expected to play, Nyheim Hines has been running with the starters, and that leaves just D'Onta Foreman and Aca'Cedric Ware along with Williams in the backfield. Foreman and Ware were signed this week. Williams figures to see plenty of snaps against his former team -- the Buffalo Bills -- as a result.
Wide Receivers to Consider
Preston Williams - Williams was a highly-touted prospect out of Colorado State but tested horribly at the combine and went undrafted. He's been making buzz at Miami Dolphins' camp and has a lot to prove in the preseason.
Reggie White - White has a huge opportunity for the New York Giants in this game, given the status of their wide receiver corps. He's 6'2" and 208 pounds with elite production (96th-percentile dominator rating, albeit at Monmouth).
Others to Consider: Jakobi Meyers, Braxton Berrios, Jake Kumerow, Greg Dortch, Kelvin Harmon
Tight Ends to Consider
Robert Tonyan - I mentioned on the Heat Check podcast that I liked Tonyan and Jace Sternberger, but Sternberger sustained a concussion, and that leaves Tonyan -- a 6'5", 236-pound super athlete -- in store for safe snaps. With tight ends, we're really seeking touchdown chances, and he has that with his profile.
Michael Gesicki - Gesicki has been having an up-and-down camp after a disappointing (though expectedly so) rookie season. A running theme with the tight ends discussed, he tested as a freak athlete and could pay off with just a few targets.