Divisional Round: FanDuel Sunday Slate Helper
The Divisional Sunday NFL DFS slate on FanDuel has two matchups, with the Houston Texans-Kansas City Chiefs game kicking off at 3:05 p.m. EST, and the Seattle Seahawks facing the Green Bay Packers at 6:40 p.m. EST. The Chiefs are 9.5-point favorites with a game total of 51.0, while the Packers are 4.5-point favorites with a total of 46.5.
Our NFL DFS matchup heat map will be referenced for all implied totals and spreads throughout this article, so be sure to check it out.
Here's how you should attack this short postseason slate.
Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs ($9,000)
Patrick Mahomes is the most expensive quarterback on the slate, but he's worth every dollar. He's easy to stack with his top two targets, Tyreek Hill ($7,900) and Travis Kelce ($7,500), and he has 400 yards and four touchdowns in his range of outcomes every week.
He also has the best matchup on the slate with the Texans ranking 24th in Adjusted Defensive Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) per play. Deshaun Watson is also capable of putting up big games, and if this contest shoots out, Mahomes could hit his monster ceiling. The Texans also allowed the seventh-most rushing yards to quarterbacks in the regular season and let Josh Allen rack up 92 yards on the ground last week. Over his last six games, Mahomes has averaged 22.7 rushing yards per contest, so he's clearly over the knee injury that hampered him for multiple weeks.
Our projections have him topping 300 passing yards and throwing multiple touchdowns, and he could easily pick up some sneaky fantasy points with his legs.
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers ($8,300)
Aaron Rodgers makes for an excellent tournament play. He's priced in an awkward spot -- where most people will either pay up for Mahomes or pivot down to a cheaper option on the slate. While Rodgers has had a down year overall, he showed that he still has a 40-point fantasy day in his bag this season against the Oakland Raiders.
Aaron Rodgers thinks about that second Super Bowl ring "every day".
Rodgers: "I'm 36. I know what this is all about." #Packers pic.twitter.com/KpEbyQyfUL
— Lily Zhao (@LilySZhao) January 8, 2020
Seattle is also one of the weaker defenses this weekend, ranking 18th in Adjusted Defensive NEP per play. In four home games against bottom-half pass defenses, Rodgers averaged 332 passing yards and 2.5 touchdowns. Look for him to hit his ceiling this week and do it at what could be lower ownership.
Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers ($8,400)
With the Packers a 4.5-point home favorite, it makes sense to pay up for Aaron Jones this week. With his NFL-leading 19 total touchdowns this season, he's a pretty good bet to find the end zone at least once in this favorable matchup.
There is still some risk here, though, with Jamaal Williams returning to the field from his shoulder issue, but Jones offers so much more on a per-touch basis. His role in the passing game could be diminished as Williams always garners high praise for his pass-blocking, but Jones' carries should be secure.
On a main slate, Jones would likely be reserved for tournaments only, but on this short slate, there really aren't many options to choose from. Unless you're punting the position, Jones is worth his lofty price. Our projections have him as the highest-scoring running back on the slate.
Damien Williams, RB, Kansas City Chiefs ($7,300)
While teams need to devote extra attention to Hill and Kelce, Damien Williams gets to feast on light boxes in this ridiculous offense. According to PlayerProfiler, he faces six or fewer defenders on more than 60 percent of his rushes, which is the eighth-highest rate in the league. That leads to fewer players to tackle him, and with his 95th-percentile speed score, he can take the ball to the house on any given carry.
- Damien Williams spinning out for the 84-yard score.
- Tyreek Hill CATCHING UP TO HIM.pic.twitter.com/b2Qpw25jqo
— Rotoworld Football (@Rotoworld_FB) December 29, 2019
The Chiefs have been "saving" LeSean McCoy for the postseason, but really they just don't know how to tell him he's not that good anymore. McCoy has posted 0.02 Rushing NEP per carry on his 101 totes this season. Over the last two weeks, Williams has dominated with 0.34 Rushing NEP per carry, 246 total yards, and three touchdowns. Which back would you feature in a playoff game?
Williams should get a solid workload against the Texans defense. They rank 22nd in schedule-adjusted run D, so he should have plenty of opportunities for big plays in this contest. It is always a good idea to play the lead back for a home team that is a 9.5-point favorite.
Duke Johnson, RB, Houston Texans ($5,700)
With the Texans being such a big underdog in this game, odds are Duke Johnson will be on the field in plenty of passing situations. That would be beneficial for Houston, as Johnson offered the fifth-most Reception NEP among running backs this season despite ranking 15th in receptions.
Duke Johnson's third-and-18 conversion with overlaid commentary from Johnson and Bill O'Brien.
"Just catching the ball, taking a peek at the sideline to see how far I had to go, and when I realized I was closer than I thought, I just tried to accelerate and get the first down." pic.twitter.com/kgf5DIx8yd
— Rivers McCown (@riversmccown) January 6, 2020
In terms of adjusted sack rate on Football Outsiders, the Chiefs have the 10th-best pass rush in the NFL. Pressure could be coming early and often in Arrowhead, so Watson will likely be forced into many checkdowns. This was true during the regular season, as the Chiefs saw the most running back targets and allowed the most receiving yards to the position.
If you want to build a "zero-RB" DFS lineup, Johnson makes a lot of sense in this spot.
Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers ($8,500)
In 12 games this season, Davante Adams' 30.3 percent target share ranked third among receivers. Meanwhile, no other receiver on the Packers saw higher than a 12 percent target share. Adams is clearly the first and second read for Rodgers, and against a Seattle defense that ranks 16th in schedule-adjusted pass defense, he should be busy.
While his touchdown total was down this season, Adams did pick it up in the second half of the year, hauling in all five of his scores in his final six games. We've seen Adams put up touchdowns in bunches throughout his career, and the Packers have a 25.5-point team total -- the second-highest on the slate. Stack him with Rodgers and hope this game shoots out.
Tyler Lockett, WR, Seattle Seahawks ($6,700)
While the spotlight was on D.K. Metcalf last week, Tyler Lockett had a quietly enticing game. Lockett was dwarfed by his teammate on the field and in the box score, but he still saw 92 air yards, indicating that Russell Wilson was trying to locate him deep.
Metcalf could have separated himself as the new alpha in Seattle, but he'll have a tough time on the perimeter against Jaire Alexander and Kevin King. Lockett has a much easier matchup in the slot against Tramon Williams, who is 36 years old and is far removed from the 4.62 40-yard-dash that he ran over a decade ago. He'll look like honey getting poured out of jar trying to chase Lockett's 4.40-speed.
While everyone is after the upside of D.K., roll with Lockett and print money this weekend.
Allen Lazard, WR, Green Bay Packers ($5,400)
Adams sees most of the looks from Rodgers, but the rest of the targets have to go somewhere. Over the last three weeks, that somewhere was the hands of Allen Lazard. He played 75 percent of the snaps and saw 20 total targets over the final three games of the season.
#Packers might not have 'game changing' speed on the perimeter, but that doesn't mean shot plays can't be schemed up
I'd rather these shots off play action to Lazard than asking someone to win outside the numbers 1-on-1
Lazard can do some damage from that reduced/slot position! pic.twitter.com/8zbHveFfyp
— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) January 7, 2020
Lazard isn't the most exciting play, but he does have an 88th-percentile speed score and offers a big frame for Rodgers to throw to. He flashed some of that speed in Week 12 when he topped 100 yards and found the end zone against the Giants. He doesn't offer massive upside and his range of outcomes is pretty wide, but he is an excellent salary relief option and should see plenty of work in a good game environment.
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs ($7,500)
With no solid value options at tight end, most lineups will likely include Travis Kelce this week. He's easy to lock in as he led all tight ends in targets, receptions and yards this season. Kelce was also Mahomes' go-to guy in the red zone as his 19 red zone targets were 12 more than any other player on the Chiefs. He's playing in a game with a 51.0-point total, so the odds of him scoring are pretty high.
Based on fantasy point-per-dollar value, Kelce is not only the best tight end, but he's projected to be the best value pass catcher on the entire slate.
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.