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Week 18 DraftKings Tournament Picks

By Jared Smola 7:54am EST 1/9/22

Week 18 presents several challenges in tournaments.On top of the normal ceiling, ownership and salary concerns we typically have, we also must determine motivation. For some teams, their playoff status is already cemented, and they have no need to play their starters the entire contest. At the same time, it should be easy to find value plays with the potential of teams resting starters. We want to attack close games for teams that have something to play for this week where we can.

Games where both teams have something to play for:

  • Steelers @ Ravens
  • 49ers @ Rams

Games where one team has something to play for:

  • Titans @ Texans
  • Colts @ Jaguars
  • Saints @ Falcons
  • Seahawks @ Cardinals

Let’s ride.

QBs

Kyler Murray ($7,400)

In a must-win game for the Cardinals, they face the lowly Seattle Seahawks who have allowed the most first downs to opposing offenses in the NFL. The Seahawks also rank #27 in pass defense DVOA and this game is expected to be the fastest-paced game on the main slate, with both teams ranking top 10 in neutral script pace of play.

Matthew Stafford ($6,700)

The 49ers are currently allowing the 11th most adjusted fantasy points to the QBs and rank 18th in pass defense DVOA. Stafford and the Rams need to win to maintain their division title and 2 seed in the NFC. The Rams defense should show up in a must-win game against either a wounded Jimmy G or a rookie in his 3rd NFL start, which should allow the Rams to dominate time of possession.

Value Plays: Taysom Hill ($6,200) & Tyler Huntley ($5,700)

Both guys have rushed for over 200 yards over their past four starts, and both teams are playing for a chance at the playoffs and will be motivated to win.


RBs

Jonathan Taylor ($9,300)

If you’re going to spend up at RB this week look no further than the fantasy football RB1 this season. JT had over 100 yards and 29 opportunities the first time the Colts and Jaguars faced each other. The Colts need to win this game to secure a playoff spot and the Jaguars have allowed 450 yards and 4 TDs to RBs the last three games.

David Montgomery ($6,800)

This game is meaningless from a playoff standpoint, but Montgomery has seen 24 or more opportunities in 4 of his last 5 games. The Vikings rank bottom 12 in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs and have allowed the 9th most fantasy points to RBs over the last 5 games.

Elijah Mitchell ($6,000)

Mitchell has 20+ carries in each of his last 4 healthy games. The 49ers have to beat the Rams to have a chance to get into the playoffs and Mitchell showed even after a few weeks off he can handle 20+ touches. The Rams are allowing only the 18th most adjusted fantasy points to RBs, but the Rams are allowing nearly a TD per game to opposing RBs this season.

Samaje Perine ($5,300)

Perine is expected to be the primary back for Cincinnati with Joe Mixon out with COVID. The major concern is Brandon Allen likely starting this game as Joe Burrow rests for the playoffs. But finding a RB less than $6000 with a 20+ touch workload is worth the offense's concerns.

Also consider: Alvin Kamara ($8,300)

WRs

AJ Brown ($7,000)

The Titans need to beat Houston to maintain their #1 seed in the AFC, which would afford them an extra week of rest for Derrick Henry heading into the playoffs. Brown had 9 targets against Houston in Week 11 before leaving with the chest injury that kept him out 3 games. The Texans are currently allowing the 13th most adjusted fantasy points to WRs.

Tyler Lockett ($6,400)

The Cardinals have struggled against Lockett for multiple years.Earlier this season Lockett exceeded 100 yards on only 5 targets, and last year he caught 4 TDs in the 2 games against Arizona. The Seahawks don’t have anything to play for, but this may be Russell Wilson’s last game as a Seahawk.

Michael Pittman ($5,900)

The Jaguars rank 7th worst in adjusted fantasy points allowed to WRs and 32nd in pass defense DVOA. The Colts have to win this week to make the playoffs. Pittman’s target shares over the last 5 games are as follows: 24%, 36%, 42%, 46% and 26%.

Cyril Grayson ($4,400)

The Buccaneers don’t have much to play for outside of seeding among the division winners, but they are still implied for nearly 25 points. Even if Tom Brady doesn’t play the whole game, Grayson should be on the field the entire game.He’s been efficient on his limited opportunities with 212 yards and 2 TDs on only 10 catches.

Also consider: Diontae Johnson ($7,600) & DK Metcalf ($6,900)

TEs

Zach Ertz ($5,300)

Ertz will be popular due to his high volume in recent weeks. Over the last 4 games, Ertz has 7, 11, 13 and 9 targets. The Seahawks are allowing the most adjusted fantasy points in the NFL to TEs. The perfect stacking partner with Kyler Murray.

Pat Freiermuth ($4,600)

The Ravens rank 8th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to TEs and with Ben playing the final game of his career, maybe the Steelers put up a fight in a must-win game to save their playoff chances.

Punt Play: John Bates ($3,000)

DSTs

Dolphins ($2,400)

Near the minimum price on Draft Kings, the Dolphins are perfect for GPPs. They have 5 games this season of greater than 10 points. They played poorly last week but facing Mac Jones at home could result in a big game with their playmakers on defense.

If you can afford it: Colts ($3,800) vs Jacksonville


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