FanDuel Daily Fantasy Football Early-Slate Helper: Week 6

The Week 6 NFL DFS early slate on FanDuel has six matchups, all kicking off at 1 p.m. EST. We have two rebuilding franchises fighting for the top overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, while we have two AFC teams giving us a possible preview of a playoff matchup.

The numberFire NFL DFS Matchup Heat Map will be referenced for all implied totals and spreads throughout this article, so be sure to check it out.

Let’s look at the best plays at every price point on the slate.

High Priced Studs

Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints ($8,000)

Somehow the New Orleans Saints are 1-point underdogs in this matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Not only have they taken down playoff-caliber teams in the Seattle Seahawks and Dallas Cowboys, but Teddy Bridgewater just diced up a Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense that ranks 11th in Adjusted Defensive Net Expected Points (NEP) per play.

The Jags may be getting Jalen Ramsey back. Ramsey hasn't been able to play with a mysterious back ailment. While he'll likely shadow Michael Thomas, they won't have an answer for Alvin Kamara. Christian McCaffrey just exploded for 176 yards on the ground to with 6 receptions and 2 touchdowns against this front. Meanwhile, the Saints' line ranks ahead of the Panthers' in adjusted line yards, pass protection, run stuff percentage, and literally everything else on Football Outsiders. Expect Kamara and the Saints to find similar success against the Jags.

DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Houston Texans ($8,400)

DeAndre Hopkins is exemplifying bad variance right now. He's on pace for 99 catches, 1110 yards, and 6 scores, but hasn't had a big game since Week 1. Meanwhile, Will Fuller just posted a career game in Week 5 to steal his thunder and frustrate everyone that rostered him. Hopkins still has a better target share, more receptions, and the same market share of air yards as Fuller, per, but he just hasn't been putting up the big weeks. That should change this week, as he's set up for a shootout in Arrowhead.

The Houston Texans and the Kansas City Chiefs have the highest implied total on this slate -- by far -- at 55.0. While Houston has had plenty of woes across the offensive line (18 sacks allowed), the Chiefs did just lose Chris Jones on their defensive line. He was the only one generating any pressure, so Deshaun Watson should have ample time to find Hopkins streaking across the middle. Assuming Tyreek Hill is out, our projections have Hopkins for the most fantasy points at his position.

Odell Beckham, WR, Cleveland Browns ($7,600)

It has not been pretty for the Cleveland Browns passing offense, which ranks 29th in Adjusted Passing NEP per play. While Baker Mayfield's play has received the bulk of the criticism, his offensive line is doing the real damage, as it ranks 26th in adjusted sack rate, per Football Outsiders. A game against Jadeveon Clowney and the Seattle Seahawks might sound intimidating, but they have a chance to find success against this front.

This Seattle defense ranks just 25th in adjusted sack rate, as they are devoid of much talent outside of Clowney. The lack of talent is also prevalent in the secondary, as they rank 23rd in Adjusted Defensive Passing NEP per play. Odell Beckham, who has seen 26 percent of targets and 34 percent of air yards, should be able to exploit this defense. This is probably the cheapest we'll see Beckham all year.

Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs ($7,500)

With both Sammy Watkins and Tyreek Hill highly questionable to suit up, Travis Kelce should see a ridiculous target share. There aren't many viable options at tight end on the slate, so paying up for Kelce might be popular. With only one score on the season, he's yet to have a signature monster game, which could suppress his ownership.

Mid-Priced Upside Plays

Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals ($6,400)

In a premium matchup with the Arizona Cardinals, Joe Mixon still couldn't top 100 yards or find the end zone on the ground. The Cincinnati Bengals offense is just uninspiring with Andy Dalton behind that brutal offensive line. Mixon is also getting minimal work as a receiver with just 12 catches through five games. The only positive for Mixon this week is that the Baltimore Ravens lost their run-stuffing safety, Tony Jefferson. They already ranked 31st in Adjusted Defensive Rushing NEP per play, so look for Mixon to find success on the ground.

Terry McLaurin, WR, Washington Redskins ($6,400)

Terry McLaurin returned from injury and entered his toughest matchup of the season. He still managed to post a respectable 0.51 Reception NEP per target while being shadowed by Stephon Gilmore, showing that he's one of the best talents from the 2019 receiver class. Even after the tough matchup, McLaurin ranks fourth among all receivers in Reception NEP per target on the season.

Things get much easier this week against the Dolphins, who rank 32nd in Adjusted Defensive NEP per play. McLaurin will also have the veteran Case Keenum back under center. They showed a connection through the first three weeks of the season and should find similar success in Week 6.

Tyler Lockett, WR, Seattle Seahawks ($6,300)

Somehow FanDuel found 16 receivers to price ahead of Tyler Lockett on this small slate. This pricing makes Lockett the second-best value, according to our projections. DFS gamers should be more than happy to cash in on the extreme value, as Cleveland has also been without its top corners for three games now.

Bargain Bin Prospects

Kenyan Drake, RB, Miami Dolphins ($5,600)

For the first time this season, we can consider a Miami Dolphin a good play. Kenyan Drake has been steadily involved in the passing game with 5.0 targets per game, and he should get more carries as they could be playing from ahead in this contest. He has proven to be better than Kalen Ballage this season with better marks in Rushing NEP per carry, Success Rate, and Reception NEP per target, so expect the Dolphins to run the game plan through their superior back.

Byron Pringle, WR, Kansas City Chiefs ($4,500)

Byron Pringle was thrust into a featured role Sunday night with Sammy Watkins' early exit. As it turns out, if you're athletic and have Patrick Mahomes delivering footballs to you, you'll probably be fantasy relevant.

According to PlayerProfiler, Byron Pringle has the third-best hog rate (targets per snap) among receivers. With depleted weaponry and a shot at elevated snaps, that metric indicates that Pringle could be very busy against the Texans.

Jonathan Taylor Smith is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice Jonathan Taylor Smith also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jtsmittyyy. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.