Week 10 Game Scripts to Target in Daily Fantasy Football
Welcome to the Game Scripts to Target article for the 2020 season. Each week we'll be taking a look at specific games to target for daily fantasy tournaments. Stacking games has always been a popular option in GPPs, as it allows you to reach for upside with the back-and-forth scoring.
Dissecting game scripts should be a huge part of your process when building lineups in NFL daily fantasy.
How will the game play out? Will it be high-paced with lots of potential for fantasy points to be scored? Does it set up well for one team, both teams, or neither? A running back could go from a lock one week as a home favorite to a complete avoid the next week as a double-digit road underdog because the expected game scripts in these contests are completely different.
Projecting these outcomes can be extremely difficult for one person. We can use the lines and totals to see what oddsmakers think and go from there. A great resource is numberFire's Daily Fantasy Matchup Heat Map, which provides betting related numbers -- implied totals, over/unders, and spreads -- as well as custom metrics that show how the teams will match up against each other. This gives us a much better handle on how games are likely to play out, and we can take advantage of that in our lineups.
Let's look at some game scripts to target for this week.
Buffalo Bills at Arizona Cardinals
Buckle up everybody, this game is going to be a barn burner and exactly the type you want to look at for a game stack.
We have the Buffalo Bills traveling west to take on the Arizona Cardinals, where the over/under is set at 56.0 -- which is the highest on the slate. On top of that, 84% of the bets are on the over, along with 91% of the money being on the over, according to oddsFire.com. This shouldn't come as a surprise, as both teams are in the top 10 for highest-scoring offenses in the league.
When looking at the pace of play for both teams, there are a few differences we should note. The Cardinals are averaging 25.35 seconds per play in all game situations, which is the third-fastest in the league, according to Football Outsiders. The Bills are averaging 28.25 seconds per play in all game situations, which is 23rd in the league. That is a large differential, however, when the Bills are in situation neutral games, they jump to the eighth-fastest team in the league. This is great to see, as the offense knows when they need to step on the gas and get the offense going.
The Bills were able to get back on track last week with a big 44-34 win over the Seattle Seahawks, which they needed after having a few lackluster games. More importantly, we saw a huge performance from quarterback Josh Allen ($8,700), who had 415 passing yards, 3 passing touchdowns, and a rushing touchdown for a total of 36 FanDuel points. That was his first time over 20 FanDuel points since Week 4, so yeah, he needed it.
We are going to spend exactly zero time talking about the Bills' backfield since it's split and lacking production overall. Moving on to the pass-catching options.
The number one option to stack with Allen is wide receiver Stefon Diggs ($7,900), who leads the team in targets (91), red zone targets (11), and tied for the most touchdowns (3). His 91 targets are 37 MORE than the player with the second-most, which is Cole Beasley ($5,400), who has 54 targets. Diggs is by far the best option to stack with but is the most expensive and should be the most popular stack from the Bills' side. On top of that, there are some expensive options on the Cardinals' side of the ball.
Outside of those two players, going to John Brown ($5,600) always has some upside -- as we saw last week. He ended with 11 targets, 8 receptions, and 99 yards for a total of 13.9 FanDuel points. If he was able to fall into the end zone last week, we could be looking at a very different salary this week. He has the third-most targets on the team and truly fits well into a game stack because he is cheaper than Diggs. Brown didn't practice on Wednesday, and that is something to monitor as the week goes on.
That's really it for the Bills. Their offensive passing game is condensed among those three players for the most part and anyone else would be a pure dart throw. Gabriel Davis ($5,000) and Isaiah McKenzie ($4,700) don't play on enough snaps or see enough targets consistent to be truly viable. Tight end Dawson Knox ($4,500) hasn't seen more than three targets in any of his games this season and simply cannot be trusted in DFS.
For the Cardinals, they are led by quarterback Kyler Murray ($8,800), who is lighting the fantasy football world on fire this year. He comes in with 23 FanDuel points or more in all eight of his games this season, including 38 and 37 points in his last two. He has two passing touchdowns or more in five of his eight games and eight rushing touchdowns on the season. Play Kyler every week, it's really that simple.
The question becomes, who do you stack with Kyler? Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins ($8,600) only saw three targets last week, which is super-low for him. Prior to last week, Hopkins had seen seven targets or more in every game leading up to last week, so you'd expect him to return to that level. The Murray to Hopkins stack brings immense upside to your lineup but comes at a very high cost to your total salary.
Christian Kirk ($6,300) has seen plenty of success as the season has gone on, specifically in his last three games. In this time, he has posted 21.6, 18.2, and 20.8 FanDuel points. That is due mainly to the fact he has five touchdowns in these three games, so he's running hot right now. You could say he is naturally due for a bit of regression since this touchdown production isn't sustainable, but with this game set to be a shootout, that regression may wait one week.
Running back Kenyan Drake ($6,000) didn't play last week but was spotted at practice on Wednesday. This is a very important piece to note as the week goes on, since it impacts Chase Edmonds ($7,100), who has been the starter with Drake out. Edmonds was a pure backup before Drake was injured, seeing fewer than 10 touches in every game. Last week with Edmonds as the starter, he saw a total of 28 touches but only turned them into 10.3 FanDuel points.
The best-case scenarios are that Drake remains out and you can confidently roster Edmonds, or Drake is back and there is a report he won't be limited in any capacity. The worst-case scenario is Drake is healthy and will play an unspecific amount and split carries with Edmonds. That would make this situation a clear spot to avoid.
While getting to Murray and Hopkins is ideal, pivoting down to Murray and Kirk should allow you enough salary to also roster Diggs from the other side.
Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams
This game is going to be popular from all aspects, so don't expect any of these players to be sneaky in any regard.
The Seattle Seahawks are on the road to take on the Los Angeles Rams, where the over/under set at 55.5, which is the second-highest on the slate. Six of Seattle's eight games have hit the over the season, along with one push and one under. On top of that, four of the last five matchups between these two teams have hit the over, so we're expecting plenty of scoring and thus plenty of fantasy points.
Both teams have implied totals sitting at 26 or higher and the public is agreeing that they both get there. According to oddsFire.com, 72% of the bets are on the over, along with 78% of the money being on the over.
Let's jump right in with the Seahawks, where wide receivers Tyler Lockett ($7,400) and D.K. Metcalf ($8,300) accounts for 48.78% of the entire target share in their passing game. If you've been following the NFL this season, you should know this already. They both have immense upside since the Seattle defense is so bad, so they are often in passing situations. Pairing them with quarterback Russell Wilson ($8,900) is always fantastic, but it comes down to how it impacts the rest of your lineup due to their high salaries.
Of course, it's doable to roster all three of them and then include one player from the Rams. You will need to find value elsewhere on the slate, but stacking this game heavily is viable his week.
The backfield situation for the Seahawks is still dealing with uncertainty, as Chris Carson ($7,800) didn't practice on Wednesday. He has missed the last two games with the same injury, and this isn't a good sign he is missing another practice. Carlos Hyde ($5,500) also missed practice on Wednesday, as well as the last two games.
In their absence, we have seen DeeJay Dallas ($5,600) play on 79% and 31% of the offensive snaps in the past two weeks, posting 20.3 and 10.9 FanDuel points in the process. Travis Homer ($5,300) was the other healthy running back and played on 10% and 48% of the snaps in these two games, posting 0.4 and 9.5 FanDuel points. Truthfully, stick to the Seattle passing game and avoid the backfield.
On the Rams' side of things, quarterback Jared Goff ($7,400) is primed to be one of the most popular options due to his salary and the matchup. The Seahawks are allowing 27.9 FanDuel points per game to opposing quarterbacks, which is dead last in the league. Stacking this game and starting with Goff makes lineup construction easier overall since he is $1.5K cheaper than Wilson.
The Rams' passing offense is similar to the Seahawks in the sense that there are two wide receivers who dominate the target share. They are Cooper Kupp ($7,700) and Robert Woods ($7,200), who account for 46.19% of the Rams' target share. They are the two best options to stack with Goff and carry the most upside. As a three-man stack, they are cheaper than Wilson-Metcalf-Lockett, which is something to consider.
Seattle is allowing 48.6 FanDuel points per game to opposing wide receivers, which is dead last in the league and 10 points worse than the team allowing the second-most FanDuel points. It's clear that the Rams' receiving options are going to be popular this week, both alone and as a part of a stack with Goff.
If you want to go slightly off the board for the Rams, consider Josh Reynolds ($5,000), who leads the Rams with a 14.8 average depth of target (aDoT) this season. He has 38 targets on the season -- the third-highest on the team -- which makes him a low-floor play, but the targets he gets downfield give him a nice ceiling.
The Rams' backfield is also a mess with Darrell Henderson ($5,800), Malcolm Brown ($5,500), and Cam Akers ($5,100) are all seeing snaps in some capacity. Henderson has the most control over the backfield snaps and will play this week even though he was dealing with a thigh issue. This is another situation to simply avoid and stick to the passing game.
Starting with Goff stacked with Kupp or Woods offers upside and allows your salary to still be flexible to add Metcalf or Lockett. It'd be great to pay up for Wilson and his receivers, but it might hamstring the rest of your lineup.
Los Angeles Chargers at Miami Dolphins
This game has the seventh-highest over/under the slate, which should naturally, make it less popular. But the options on both sides aren't too expensive, which makes this very easy to stack and build from a roster construction standpoint.
The obvious spot to start a game stack here is with the Chargers' quarterback, Justin Herbert ($8,000), and pair him with wide receiver Keenan Allen ($7,800). Herbert took over the starting job in Week 2, and since then, Allen has seen 10 targets or more in every single game he has played in full. Allen saw only two targets versus the New Orleans Saints, but he left that game with a back injury. Allen dominates the team with a 29.04% targets share, while the next player, Hunter Henry ($5,500), is only at 18.48%.
Allen is the clear number one option for Herbert and going elsewhere is suboptimal. This is not to say you can't stack Henry or someone like Mike Williams ($5,900), but they should be the second option in after Allen. It helps that both Henry and Williams are affordable, allowing you to add a player from the Dolphins to run the stack back.
Running back Justin Jackson ($5,500) is dealing with a knee injury, which leaves Joshua Kelley ($5,200) and Kalen Ballage ($5,300) as the two main options. Truthfully, I have zero interest in rostering either of these players or adding them to a game stack.
Rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa ($6,800) is very affordable this week, but of course, he can be risky to trust with such a limited sample size. You shouldn't expect him to be popular in any capacity as a riskier option on this slate.
The top option for the Dolphins -- regardless of position or salary -- is wide receiver DeVante Parker ($6,000), who is by far their best player. The Dolphins put wide receiver Preston Williams on injured reserve this week, leaving Parker alone at the top of the depth chart.
Parker has a team-high 52 targets this season, while the next wide receiver only has 23 targets. That player is Jakeem Grant ($4,600), who saw five targets last week, along with playing on 48% of the snaps. It wouldn't be a surprise to see those both increase with Williams now out.
Tight end Mike Gesicki ($5,300) makes a very easy add to this game stack since he has the second-most targets (38) on the team and given the fact the Chargers are allowing 12.2 FanDuel points per game to opposing tight ends, which is the eighth-most in the league.
This game stack is rather easy to look at and not overly expensive. You can start with Herbert and Allen, then consider adding in a secondary option from the Chargers, who is a bit less expensive. Then look to add Parker from the Dolphins, who is their top option and still not at a salary where he is unreachable.