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NFL DFS Lineup Sleepers for DraftKings, FanDuel - NFL Divisional Playoff Round Value Picks Include Brock Purdy, Jerick McKinnon, Tee Higgins, Dallas Goedert

Brock Purdy - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

If you are still wanting to play fantasy, the good news is there are still three more weeks to do it. NFL playoff action continues this weekend with two games on Saturday (1/21) and two more on Sunday (1/22). What's even more interesting is that fantasy football and real life have intersected this season. Of the 8 teams left in the NFL playoffs, only one (the Dallas Cowboys) finished outside the Top 10 in Offensive DVOA rankings from Football Outsiders and that was likely only from not having Dak Prescott for 5 games of the season. It's also fitting that 5 playoff teams: Kansas City, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, and Dallas all rank in the Top 6 in most fantasy points scored by an offense in 2022. It's almost as if teams have figured out that the goal on Sundays is to score the most points.

The purpose of this article is to help identify players who are undervalued in DFS and typically come with a higher range of outcomes for their weekend contests. You don't always need a player to be the QB1 or RB1 on the week (especially if you are playing in cash games), but in Guaranteed Prize Pool contests we always want to be targeting the players with the highest potential upside at their given DFS price. With only 4 games to choose from our margin for error is a lot less this weekend as well.

This article has run every week throughout the regular season. It won't include the obvious choices but instead players who appear to be undervalued in current DFS formats. If you didn't catch my Week 1 article that included some DFS tips and tricks, it can be found here. When it comes to tournaments, stacking our quarterback with one of their pass catchers is a must and we should be looking for players with higher guaranteed floors (and consistency) to get us over the 50/50 hump in cash games. No matter which one you decide to play this week, here are some bargain players with potential in the Divisional Playoff Round. Now let's get to those picks already!

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Quarterback NFL DFS Value Plays - Divisional Playoff Round

Daniel Jones, NYG at PHI| DK: $5,800, FD: $7,400

It's amazing what good coaching can do for a quarterback. After three years of inconsistency and many labeling him as a bust, Jones put together his best season ever throwing for 3,205 yards and 15 TDs. Where he got over the hump for fantasy purposes was on the ground rushing for 708 yards and 7 TDs. Jones has always had sneaky athleticism and the Giants' offense has put him in plenty of positions to succeed this season even without a true WR1 in their arsenal. On a strictly PPG basis, Jones was the QB10 on the fantasy season at 18.4 points per game.

Philadelphia has a stout defense and was the sixth-best defense against opposing QBs for fantasy on the season giving up just 15.7 points per game. Jones will have his work cut out for him against a defense that is well-rested and is already 2-0 against the Giants this season. However, Jones did not play against the Eagles in Week 18 with the Giants already clinching a playoff birth.

If we have faith in Jones having a good enough week and want to spend our resources elsewhere as well as differentiating from most of the other lineups who will likely have one of the top QBs, Jones is as good of a bargain as there is in DFS this weekend. On average Jones has scored 7 fantasy points per game just from rushing alone this season which provides us with a very solid floor week to week.

Brock Purdy, SF vs DAL| DK: $5,400, FD: $7,000

Ever since he stepped in for an injured Jimmy Garappolo, Purdy is 7-0 as the 49ers quarterback including an impressive playoff win over the Seahawks in the NFC Wildcard Round. While QB wins don't matter for fantasy, Purdy has thrown 2+ TDs in all of his starts. He doesn't have a lot of rushing upside, but he is stocked with an incredible quartet of weapons around him in Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle. That's not even mentioning the league's best left tackle in Trent Williams as well as play-caller in Kyle Shanahan. The 49ers have so many weapons my head is spinning.

San Francisco is favored by 4 in this weekend's game against the Cowboys who only surrendered 17.6 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs this season (good for 12th best). This will undoubtedly be a big game for Purdy and the 49ers, but they face a potent Cowboys offense and there could be a fair amount of points scored in this one. Like Daniel Jones, if you'd prefer to differentiate and stay with a bargain at QB this week there is a chance of being very happy with Purdy once the weekend is over. The only question some have is if the Cinderella Story is going to turn back into a pumpkin at midnight.

 

Running Back NFL DFS Value Plays - Divisional Playoff Round

Jerick McKinnon, KC vs JAC| DK: $6,000, FD: $7,000

One of the best comeback players of the 2022 season, McKinnon is a great story of perseverance. After waiting his time for 4 years in Minnesota behind Adrian Peterson, McKinnon signed with the 49ers in 2018 to be the guy in Kyle Shanahan's offensive scheme before injuries caused him to miss all of 2018 and 2019. Since signing in Kansas City he's become an incredible weapon out of the backfield for Patrick Mahomes and was an awesome value late in the season for fantasy.

Over his last five games, McKinnon has been the RB1 twice and provided an RB6 finish as well. While he hasn't gotten a ton of carries, he has been such an integral part of the Chiefs' passing game with 56 receptions for for 512 yards and 9 TDs on the season despite not being heavily involved until Week 9. There features to be a lot of points scored in this one and the Jaguars' defense is their weak link right now. Staying in the flames with McKinnon at a very affordable price feels like a good move.

Miles Sanders, PHI vs NYG| DK: $5,700, FD: $7,200

One of the most overlooked players in fantasy this season, Sanders provided some incredible value rushing for 1,269 yards and 11 TDs, but he wasn't as much of a viable threat in the Eagles' passing game as he was in previous seasons. In a game against the New York Giants where Sanders should be well rested coming off a bye there looks to be plenty of opportunity for him in this one. One tactic that can lead to success in picking running backs for DFS is picking the ones in games where their team is favored. If the Eagles are leading there will be plenty of positive game scripts for Sanders.

The Giants' defense surrendered the twelfth-most fantasy points to opposing RBs at 22.4 fantasy points per game. Last week their defense was good enough at stopping the Vikings to win the ballgame, but it hasn't been an elite unit by any means. If you see Philly getting out ahead and padding a lead like most of the sportsbooks do then Sanders feels like a smashing value for the weekend, but he will likely need to find the end zone to do so.

James Cook, BUF vs CIN| DK: $4,800, FD: $5,800

While he might have seemed like an early disappointment to some, Cook really came on in the second-half of the 2022 season and became much more involved in the offense. While Devin Singletary will likely see his share of carries in this one, Cook has looked like the much more explosive back. Last week Cook had just 12 carries for 39 yards but he did find the end zone in the game. If you want a bargain RB2 with upside for the weekend then Cook meets just about all of that criterion in a game likely to be a shootout.

 

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Wide Receiver NFL DFS Value Plays - Divisional Playoff Round

Christian Kirk, JAC at KC| DK: $6,000, FD: $7,600

Kirk provided some great fantasy value this season and lived up to the heavy contract he signed with the Jaguars in the offseason to the tune of 4 years / $72 million while finishing with 84 receptions for 1,108 yards and 8 TDs. This was good for the WR22 on a PPG basis in half-PPR formats. Last weekend against the Chargers, Kirk had another big game with 8 catches for 78 yards and a TD.

For most of the season Kirk has been a high-floor / lower-ceiling type of play in fantasy and is likely suited for cash games versus GPP this weekend. The reason being is he sees a lot of snaps in the slot which can result in fewer big plays than a wide receiver who can catch one pass down the sideline and take it all the way to the house. Trevor Lawrence has gotten a lot better as the season has gone on and now looks like the bona fide potential superstar that many had imagined him to be which only makes Kirk's outlook for the rest of the 2022 playoffs and beyond even brighter.

Tee Higgins, CIN at BUF| DK: $5,800, FD: $7,000

We could make the case that Higgins would be a Top 5 fantasy WR on just about any team where he isn't shadowed by Ja'Marr Chase and it would be hard to find many who would disagree. This season Higgins had another impressive campaign with 74 receptions for 1,029 yards and 7 TDs. However, he missed close to 3 games where he had just 2 receptions 27 yards after suffering an early concussion, as well as being ruled out in Weeks 5 and 14 early on where he played a total of just 11 snaps. Eliminate those games and Higgins finishes as a WR1 on the season.

The Bengals go up against a Buffalo defense that is one of the better units in the league, but their weakness has been through the air. The Bills are giving up the tenth-most fantasy points to opposing WRs this year at 31.1 fantasy points per game and this one will likely have a ton of points scored in it. While the MNF game between the two teams was cut short several weeks ago after the scary Damar Hamlin injury, the good news for viewers is that this weekend we will get a rematch. There is room for Tee to explode in this one and he could be a very affordable stack to go along with Joe Burrow.

Richie James, NYG at PHI| DK: $3,900, FD: $5,900

Known for his back flips, James has been a solid slot receiver this season for the Giants. Last week he had just 4 catches for 31 yards in the win over the Vikings but had a total of 6 targets in the contest. Philadelphia's defense is a good one, but the negative game scripts could be there for the Giants to have to take to the air to be successful and move the ball. James tends to man the slot and could have some value in PPR formats. At a price of just $3,900 on DraftKings, he can be a solid flex with upside allowing you to spend your money elsewhere.

 

Tight End NFL DFS Value Plays - Divisional Playoff Round

Dallas Goedert, PHI vs NYG| DK: $4,500, FD: $6,300

One of the better tight ends in the league, Goedert put together another solid season with 55 receptions for 702 yards and 3 TDs over just 12 games. The Giants' defense is giving up the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing Tight Ends on the season at 12.9 per game and Goedert could be in for a big day. Jalen Hurts will return to action after suffering a shoulder sprain and the extra week off was key for the Eagles playoff hopes.

Expect the Eagles to start fast in this one. While Goedert has A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith to compete with, he is also a difficult player for the Giants' linebackers to cover in space over the middle. Goedert has some big-play ability which is what we want in DFS formats from our TEs and averaged a hefty 12.8 yards per reception this season which was higher than a lot of wide receivers.

Dawson Knox, BUF vs CIN| DK: $3,800, FD: $5,800

Knox has been on fire of late and has established himself as a favorite target of Josh Allen in the red zone. Including last week's postseason 34-31 victory over the Dolphins, Knox has scored a touchdown in 6 straight games. At a price of just $3,800 on DraftKings he is very affordable even against a tough Bengals defense this weekend. The good news is there will likely be a ton of points scored in this one and it's not difficult to imagine Knox scoring a touchdown at all. Sometimes it is better to keep riding the hot hand until the streak runs out.

 



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