Here we go with the Single Game NFL DFS slate for Thursday Night Football of Week 14. Today’s matchup is between the Patriots and Rams with LAR checking in as a 4.5 point home favorite. The over/under currently rests at 44 total points. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:05 ET.
We’ll highlight the top picks and best bargains to assemble a cash-inducing lineup. On top of that, the “additional notes” section will feature several tournament selections while adding context to the rest of this slate.
We will be producing these articles for Thursday and Monday primetime matchups every week, so be sure to bookmark the Rotoworld Daily page for those occasions - not to mention all the other fantastic daily fantasy content.
Cam Newton - QB - New England (DK: $10,600 / FD: $16,000)
This tilt features two great defenses, leaving every skill player with an underwhelming matchup on paper. Looking within that, Cam Newton emerges as a serious CPT/MVP candidate due to his rushing upside. While Cam’s numbers in the passing department have been ugly, he’s essentially a goal-line back who has 11 rushing scores on the season. In other words, the Patriots’ scoring opportunities go through him one way or another, and that’s enough to make him one of the top overall plays (per dollar) on both sites.
Robert Woods - WR - LA Rams (DK: $9,200 / FD: $13,500)
It’s no secret that Rams’ QB Jared Goff loves targeting Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods. So which one makes for the better DFS play on tonight’s single-game slate? My money is on Woods, who has seen the pendulum swing in his favor with 38 targets, 29 receptions, 295 yards, and a touchdown over his last three outings. Because of this strong floor/ceiling combination, you could look towards playing Woods over his QB tonight - as that strategy carries more weight on DraftKings (full PPR scoring).
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Damiere Byrd - WR - New England (DK: $800 / FD: $10,000)
I don’t believe we’ve seen this big of a price discrepancy between FanDuel and DraftKings, at least this year in single-game showdowns. Simply put, DraftKings dropped the ball with this one, as Byrd should probably be priced somewhere closer to $6,000 or so. That makes him an easy play through all formats over there, as Byrd checks in as one of Newton’s favorite targets with Julian Edelman still out. Byrd has seen seven or more targets in three of the last four games, which helped produce a sweet 7-132-1 line at Houston earlier this year. The Pats should be throwing the ball more than last week, as this matchup looks like a more competitive battle. That would be enough for Byrd to pay off his erroneous salary on DK.
Matt Gay - K - LA Rams (DK: $3,800 / FD: $8,000)
I’m content with selecting Matt Gay as a value filler on either site. The kickers profile better on FanDuel, as the half PPR scoring makes them more competitive with skill position players. Gay is cheaper on both sites despite playing for the team with a higher scoring projection. As mentioned earlier, both defenses are legitimate, which could set up numerous field goal opportunities for either side. Gay is questionable, so we’ll need to check his status closer to kickoff. If he’s out, don’t be afraid to fire up Austin MacGinnis in his place.
Jared Goff (QB - LAR) can be combined with Newton in cash games, and that’s probably a better strategy for FanDuel’s scoring. As mentioned earlier, Woods and Cooper Kupp (WR - LAR) have traded big games this season. I have a slight lean towards Woods, but deciding between these similarly-priced receivers can be considered a coinflip. You could realistically take both Kupp and Woods (without Goff), and that would serve as almost complete exposure to LAR’s passing attack. Of course, that’s more of a tournament approach.
Let’s look towards the running backs, where rookie Cam Akers (RB - LAR) may finally be in business. The Rams’ RB situation has been a mess this season (for DFS purposes), as Akers, Darrell Henderson, and Malcolm Brown have all traded big games. It seems like Akers is trending towards the top of that group after racking up 94 yards and a TD on 22 touches last game. He’s playable through all formats with Henderson and Brown profiling as cheap tournament picks with an outside chance of getting the “hot hand”.
Damien Harris (RB - NE) has been the top RB for New England this season. However, it’s difficult to justify him outside of multi-entry tournament usage. Newton steals the rushing touchdowns for New England, and this matchup at LAR looks tough ... On the other hand,
James White (RB - NE) could be primed for a bounce-back. The Patriots didn’t need him last game, but White’s receiving prowess could be called upon in a close game against the Rams. He’s one of my favorite tournament plays, potentially taking him along with Akers in the same lineup (game flow correlation).
Josh Reynolds (WR - LAR) and Van Jefferson (WR - LAR) represent a pair of bargain fillers through all formats. In selecting either of these guys, you are essentially hoping they can come down with a big play - preferably a touchdown. However, it’s hard to rely on either fringe WR in cash games.