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NFL DFS Showdown Lineup Picks: Bills-Bengals

By Matt Schauf 2:46pm EST 1/2/23


If you sat through the crapfest that was Steelers-Ravens on Saturday night, then you've earned what just might be the game of the week.

The Bills head to Cincinnati as 1.5-point favorites. They sit 4th in the league in scoring -- coming off 2 straight games over 30 points -- and 2nd in total yards. Buffalo topped 400 total yards each of the past 2 weeks and 9 times this season. And last time out, they did it primarily on the ground for a change.

Devin Singletary, James Cook and Josh Allen led a 254-yard rushing day in frigid, windy conditions at Chicago. Allen threw for just 172 yards in that game, his 2nd outing of less than 200 yards among the past 3 and 4th such game since the bye.

So is this a rebound spot for Buffalo passing or another run-heavy night?

Well, the Bengals hit the week as a negative scoring matchup for QBs, RBs and TEs by adjusted fantasy points allowed. WRs, on the other hand, find the 9th most friendly setting. Since the Week 10 bye, Cincinnati ranks just 21st in pass-defense DVOA; 11th vs. the run.

That's good news for Stefon Diggs, who's coming off 3 straight down games.

The Buffalo defense has showed vulnerability against the pass lately, too. The Bills rank just 17th in DVOA there over the aforementioned span, compared with 5th against the run.

That's not the way to approach a matchup with Joe Burrow, who leads all QBs in Pro Football Focus passing grade for the season. And after dealing with injuries, WRs Ja'Marr Chase and Tee Higgins both arrive with multiple healthy games behind them.

So who emerges as the top DFS value plays and top picks overall in this bountiful matchup? Let's check the charts ...


DraftKings

This matchup that seems to favor passing on both sides adds attractiveness to the high-ceiling wideouts. The projections here don't take into account the potential for the 100-yard bonus in DK scoring. The betting market agrees with our numbers, setting Chase highest at 82.5 yards. And bettors on the DraftKings Sportsbook are favoring his "over." Diggs (72.5) and Higgins (69.5) have realistic shots to get there as well, though.

Obviously, we'll need some truly cheap plays to help us fit multiple stars into showdown lineups for this one. In that area, Khalil Shakir could help. It's really a crapshoot between him, Isaiah McKenzie and Cole Beasley for who does something of value. But Shakir actually played 2 more snaps than McKenzie last time out.


FanDuel

If you play both QBs in a FanDuel lineup, you'll have $9000 left per slot. As you can see from the chart, only 1 player (Cole Beasley) garnered projections from us and sports the $5K minimum salary. Add Chase, and you have $13K left to split between 2 spots. Diggs sits lower on the value chart but gives you an extra $1K of spending room, with Higgins another $1500 beyond that.

There's not quite enough room to get the QBs, Higgins and Gabe Davis into the lineup, which would leave you just $4500 for the remaining slot. But Higgins or Diggs plus Tyler Boyd leaves room for 1 more player.

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