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Week 16 DraftKings Picks

By Jared Smola | Updated on Tue, 23 May 2023 . 1:27 PM EDT


QB

Cash Cornerstones

There’s no 1 glaring cash-game value at QB. So this is a week to prioritize your top targets at RB, WR and even TE — and then play the best QB that fits in your lineup.

Here are my favorites at different price ranges …

High-end: Lamar Jackson, Ravens ($8,000)

What really needs to be said here? Jackson has averaged 5.8 more DraftKings points per game than any other QBs on the main slate. He’s priced at his highest mark of the season — but he’s still hit 3x value for this price tag (24 points) in 11 of 14 games.

Mid-range: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Dolphins ($6,000)

Did you know that Fitzpatrick ranks 5th among all QBs in fantasy points since taking back over as Miami’s starter in Week 7? He’s tallied 21+ DK points in 5 of those 9 games, including 3 of the last 4.

Fitz gets a plus Week 16 matchup at home for the Bengals. Cincinnati ranks “just” 18th in DK points allowed to QBs — but that’s largely because they’ve faced the 2nd fewest pass attempts. Only 1 team has allowed more points per pass attempt.

Miami hasn’t been able to run on anyone this season, leading to 37.7 attempts per game for Fitzpatrick over the last 9. With that type of volume in this matchup, he’s a good bet to return value.

Cheap: Andy Dalton, Bengals ($5,200)

Let’s flip to the other side of this Bengals-Dolphins game with sneaky shootout potential.

Playing QBs against Miami has been profitable all season. The Fins have allowed multiple passing scores in 12 of 14 games, including to guys like Case Keenum, Mason Rudolph and Eli Manning.

As my colleague Matt Schauf pointed out, Sunday will be just Dalton’s 4th game this season against a team ranked outside the top 13 in Football Outsiders’ pass defense DVOA. In the first 3, he posted 19, 21.3 and 13.3 DK points.


Tournament Targets

Matt Ryan, Falcons ($6,200)

He’s played well over the past 3 games, scoring 22.5+ DK points in Weeks 13 and 14 and then 19.1 in a tough spot in San Francisco last week.

Ryan heads back home this Sunday to face a crumbling Jacksonville pass defense. The Jags have allowed the 10th most fantasy points per game to QBs over last 5 weeks, despite facing the 3rd fewest attempts. They’ve coughed up 9.3 yards per attempt and 8 TDs during that stretch.

Atlanta’s 27-point implied total is 3rd highest on the week.

Daniel Jones, Giants ($5,900)

He’s been a prototypical tournament QB this season: 7 games of under 16 DK points … but 3 games of 32+.

Jones carries even more risk this week coming off his high-ankle sprain. But no one will own him. And there’s plenty of upside against a beat-up Redskins secondary. Slot CB Jimmy Moreland was placed on IR this week, while CB Quinton Dunbar, CB Fabian Moreau and S Landon Collins all look iffy for Sunday’s game.


Saturday Slate

Deshaun Watson ($7,000) and Jameis Winston ($6,900) are the clear top 2 plays in what should be a shootout in Tampa Bay. It’s easy enough to fit either guy into lineups — especially with no elite RBs to pay up for. With Winston missing WRs Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, Watson is the preferred play among these 2.

Watson and Winston are also the 2 most expensive QBs on the slate and figure to carry the most ownership. If you’re looking to get contrarian, consider Jimmy Garoppolo ($5,500). He’s been anything but reliable this season but has 3 games of 31+ DK points among his last 7. And the 49ers’ 25.25-point implied total is 2nd highest on this slate.



RB

Cash Cornerstones

Joe Mixon, Bengals ($6,600)

Over the last 5 weeks, Mixon ranks …

  • 1st in carries
  • 2nd in rushing yards
  • 6th in rushing TDs
  • 23rd in targets
  • 28th in catches
  • 17th in receiving yards
  • 6th in PPR points

He’s underpriced for a pristine matchup against a Dolphins defense ranked dead last in DraftKings points allowed to RBs. Miami has allowed a RB to hit 21+ points in 3 of the past 4 weeks.

DeAndre Washington, Raiders ($4,000)

His price hasn’t been adjusted for Josh Jacobs getting ruled out for Week 16, so Washington is your cash-game lock.

When Jacobs missed Week 14, Washington played 63% of Oakland’s offensive snaps, ran a route on 55% of Derek Carr’s drop backs and handled 14 carries and 7 targets. He scored 21.6 DK points in that one.

Washington should play a similar role this weekend vs. a Chargers squad sitting 23rd in Football Outsiders’ run defense rankings and 22nd in DK points allowed to RBs.


Tournament Targets

Marlon Mack, Colts ($6,200)

Mack has totaled just 57 rushing yards in his 2 games back from that broken hand. But he’s faced the Bucs and Saints, who sit 2nd and 6th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs.

Mack handled 71% of the Colts’ RB carries in those 2 games, so we can safely say that he remains the clear lead ball-carrier here.

And now he’s in just about the best spot possible: at home as a 6.5-point favorite against a pathetic Panthers run defense. Carolina ranks dead last in both Football Outsiders’ run defense DVOA and adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs. Just over the past 5 weeks, the Panthers have coughed up 726 yards and 9 TDs on 5.7 yards per carry to RBs.

Devonta Freeman, Falcons ($6,000)

We saw Freeman capitalize on that Panthers matchup 2 weeks ago, tallying 19.4 DK points. He’s in another great spot this weekend at home for Jacksonville. The Jags are down to 31st in Football Outsiders’ run defense rankings and have allowed 5.7 yards per carry over the last 5 weeks.

Freeman has seen solid volume since returning from injury, averaging 15.3 carries and 4 targets over the past 3 weeks.

Melvin Gordon, Chargers ($5,600)

I almost included him as a cash-game play — but I’ll highlight Gordon here because it looks like he’ll come in surprisingly low owned.

That’s probably because he’s coming off a disappointing 9.4-point outing against the Vikings. We knew that was a tough spot, though. And Gordon had scored 19.4 DK points in 3 of his previous 5.

That stretch included a 23.3-point effort against the Raiders. Gordon’s Chargers are 7-point home favorites with a nice 26.25-point implied total for the rematch.


Saturday Slate

Todd Gurley ($6,300) and Devin Singletary ($5,500) are the only 2 guys on this slate resembling feature backs — and they face the #1 and #2 defenses in DK points allowed to RBs.

Singletary still pops as the top dollars-per-point value, though. He’s played 70+% of Buffalo’s offensive snaps in 5 straight games, averaging 17.6 carries, 3.6 targets and 14.2 DK points over that span. New England is more susceptible to the run than the pass and just coughed up 136 rushing yards to Joe Mixon last week.

On the other side of that game, Sony Michel ($4,600) is worth considering in tournaments. Like New England, the Bills are much weaker vs. the run than the pass. Football Outsiders ranks Buffalo just 19th in run defense (vs. 3rd in pass defense). With QB Tom Brady struggling and WR Julian Edelman hobbled by a knee injury, this should be a run-heavy game plan from the Patriots. Michel has carried 15+ times in 9 of 14 games this season, including a 17-carry, 63-yard effort vs. the Bills back in Week 4.



WR

Cash Cornerstones

Keenan Allen, Chargers ($6,300)

He’s averaged 9 targets, 7.2 catches, 78 yards, .4 TDs and 17.7 DraftKings points over his last 5 games. That stretch started with a 16.6-point outing against the Raiders.

Allen is a high-floor play for the rematch with his division rival. Oakland ranks 25th in DK points allowed to WRs and 24th in adjusted fantasy points allowed.

Tyler Boyd, Bengals ($5,800)

Boyd has averaged 9.6 targets and 5.8 catches in QB Andy Dalton’s 11 starts this season. He’s tallied at least 12.8 DK points in 7 of those outings, with spike weeks of 25.2 and 31.3 points.

Boyd is a safe play based on volume and has upside based on matchup this week. He gets a Dolphins defense ranked 26th in DK points allowed to WRs and 31st in adjusted fantasy points allowed.


Tournament Targets

Terry McLaurin, Redskins ($6,200)

QB Dwayne Haskins has played better over the past 2 weeks. And that’s showed up in McLaurin’s box score, with games of 15.7 and 27 DraftKings points.

Now he gets a tasty matchup against a Giants secondary that released top CB Janoris Jenkins a week ago. That leaves New York with DeAndre Baker, Sam Beal and Corey Ballentine, who rank 123rd, 104th and 131st among 133 CBs in Pro Football Focus’ coverage grades.

Golden Tate, Giants ($4,800)

He’s caught exactly 1 pass in each of his last 2 games. Those have both been with QB Eli Manning.

QB Daniel Jones is back for Week 16, which is good news for Tate. He’s averaged 8.1 targets, 5.1 catches, 64 yards and .6 TDs in 7 games with the rookie. Tate has scored at least 11.8 DK points in 6 of those 7 games, including outings of 25.2 and 24.5.

He has the best matchup among Giants WRs this weekend against a Redskins defense that’s allowed the 7th most fantasy points to slot receivers over the last 8 weeks. And Washington just placed slot CB Jimmy Moreland on IR this week.


Saturday Slate

Like at QB, the top WR plays are clustered in the Texans-Buccaneers game.

Tampa’s top 2, Breshad Perriman ($6,000) and Justin Watson ($4,600), pop as the best dollars-per-point values. Consider using the cheaper and likely lower-owned Watson in tournaments. He should be an every-down player and is just 2 weeks removed from a 5-59-1 line.

Will Fuller ($5,900) is my favorite tournament play on this slate at any position. He returned from his hamstring injury last week to play 94% of Houston’s offensive snaps and tally 7 targets. Now he gets the Bucs’ league-worst WR defense. Tampa has been especially vulnerable to deep balls, allowing the 2nd most completions of 40+ yards. That’s Fuller’s bread and butter.

If you’re looking to save some cash, consider Mohamed Sanu ($3,800). With that ankle injury seemingly behind him, he ran a route of 100% of Tom Brady’s drop backs last week and saw a team-high 8 targets. Sanu could be busy again on Saturday if Julian Edelman is limited by his knee injury.



TE

Cash Cornerstone

Austin Hooper, Falcons ($4,400)

Hooper has been quiet in 2 games back from his knee injury. But his snaps were limited in that 1st game; then he faced a shutdown 49ers defense in the 2nd.

The good news is that he was back in a full-time role last week, playing 82% of Atlanta’s offensive snaps and running a route on 79% of QB Matt Ryan’s drop backs. That knee injury should be behind him at this point. And don’t forget that Hooper averaged 17.9 DK points over his first 9 games.

Now his price is down $1,600 from just 2 weeks ago and to its lowest mark since Week 4. Plus, Hooper is in a great spot at home vs. a Jaguars defense that Football Outsiders’ ranks 31st in Football Outsiders’ TE coverage rankings.


Tournament Targets

Hunter Henry, Chargers ($4,700)

Henry has been surprisingly quiet in 3 games since the Chargers’ bye, totaling just 6 catches on 9 targets.

That has his price down to its lowest point since Week 7, though, and also figures to suppress his ownership.

Henry’s playing time has remained fine over the last 3 weeks, so a box-score bounce back is coming. And it could certainly come this week against a Raiders defense ranked 22nd in DK points allowed to TEs and 28th in adjusted fantasy points allowed. Henry posted a 4-30-1 line on 7 targets in his 1st game vs. Oakland.

Jacob Hollister, Seahawks ($4,200)

He figures to be pretty chalky, but I still think Hollister is worth using in tournaments.

He gets the Cardinals TE defense that we’ve been attacking all season. Arizona has allowed 82 more yards and 6 more TDs to TEs than any other team.

In this year’s first Cardinals-Seahawks meeting, TE Will Dissly posted a 7-57-1 line on a team-high 8 targets.


Saturday Slate

George Kittle ($6,500) is clearly the best play in terms of raw projection. But he’s also the most expensive TE by a significant margin. You should definitely use him on Jimmy Garoppolo teams, but Kittle is an interesting fade elsewhere.

I’ll also be fading Tyler Higbee ($5,000). Scary for sure considering he leads all TEs in targets, catches and yards over the past 3 weeks. But San Francisco sits 2nd in Football Outsiders’ TE coverage rankings and 3rd in DK points allowed to the position. Higbee will also be contending with the return of TE Gerald Everett.

O.J. Howard ($4,000) easily pops as the top dollars-per-point value. In fact, he’s the best value among all TEs, WRs and RBs — so you can even consider using him at Flex. Howard has totaled 19 targets, 13 catches and 180 yards over his last 3 games — all top 9 marks at his position. Mike Evans and Chris Godwin leave behind 17.7 targets per game. And Howard gets a Texans defense ranked 20th in DK points allowed to TEs.



DST

Cash Cornerstone

Redskins ($2,800)

Daniel Jones is back under center for the Giants, which is good news for Washington’s defense. In the rookie’s 10 starts, the G-Men have allowed an average of 3.8 sacks and turned it over 1.7 times. Both marks are way up from 1.5 sacks and .5 turnovers in QB Eli Manning’s 4 starts.

The Redskins are at home this weekend and are (gasp!) 2.5-point favorites. The Giants’ 19.25-point implied total is 3rd lowest on the main slate.


Tournament Target

Steelers ($3,900)

Paying up for the Steelers has been profitable this season. They’ve scored 11+ DK points in 10 of 14 games, including huge outings of 25, 19, 19 and 18 points.

Pittsburgh will have a huge advantage over the Jets in the trenches this week. Pro Football Focus ranks the Steelers #1 in their pass-rushing grades, while the Jets rank 27th in pass-blocking. Football Outsiders’ adjusted sack rate paints a similar picture: the Steelers rank 2nd and the Jets rank 30th.


Saturday Slate

The Patriots ($4,000) and 49ers ($3,400) are both high-upside plays at home vs. mistake-prone QBs. Try to pay up for 1 of them in tournaments.

The Texans ($3,200) are the best takeaway bet on the slate against QB Jameis Winston and the Bucs, who are averaging 2.4 turnovers per game.


Jared Smola Author Image
Jared Smola, Lead Analyst
Jared has been with Draft Sharks since 2007. He’s now Lead Analyst, heading up the preseason and weekly projections that fuel your Draft War Room and My Team tools. He currently ranks 1st among 133 analysts in draft rankings accuracy.
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