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DFS Wide Receivers To Target In The Wild Card Round


In Week 17, John Brown was inactive and Robert Foster played in his place. Even though Foster played 98.4% of the snaps, he failed to haul in a single target and ended up with a goose egg. Instead, Duke Williams led the way for the Bills receivers, hauling in six passes for 108 yards. I turned out to be completely wrong about the Rams receivers last week as they played the entire game, leading to both Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods finishing as top-11 receivers. I also got off of the Devante Parker band-wagon for Week 17 and that turned out to be the wrong thing to do as he hauled in eight passes for 137 yards, helping the Dolphins beat the Patriots. On a positive note, Michael Gallup torched the Redskins secondary, ending up as the No. 1 receiver on the week. Here is a complete statistical recap of the Week 17 recommendations:

  • Courtland Sutton - 8 targets, 4 catches, 52 yards
  • Michael Gallup - 7 targets, 5 catches, 98 yards, 3 TD
  • John Brown - 0 targets, 0 catches
  • Pivot: Robert Foster - 4 targets, 0 catches
  • Golden Tate - 8 targets, 5 catches, 68 yards, 1 TD
  • Greg Ward - 7 targets, 6 catches, 43 yards
  • Dede Westbrook - 8 targets, 7 catches, 72 yards, 1 TD

Teams have been stacking the box against the Titans this year in an effort to stop Derrick Henry, and when teams play man-to-man coverage behind the stacked box, A.J. Brown ($8,300 Fanduel / $7,400 DraftKings) has been able to dominate. However, when Brown has gone up against a formidable man-to-man corner, he has been slowed down. In Week 16, Brown saw Marshon Lattimore in coverage and was held to just one catch for 34 yards and there may be a similar result this weekend when he faces Stephon Gilmore. Although Devante Parker was able to have a solid day against the Patriots Defense last week, I am more willing to bet on the Patriots making adjustments and not allowing that to happen again than allowing another wide receiver to torch them for a second week in a row.

DeAndre Hopkins ($8,700 Fanduel / $7,700 DraftKings) has a tough matchup against Tre'Davious White this week so I will look elsewhere on the high-end. Hopkins is an elite wide receiver but White is an elite talent as well, and if Hopkins is going to do any damage this weekend, it's likely because another cornerback gets lined up on him. Even if White covers Hopkins for 100% of the snaps, he won't be completely shut down, but his upside will be capped. Levi Wallace is the slowest cornerback in the Bills secondary, and if either Kenny Stills or Will Fuller gets matched up on him it could mean trouble for the Bills Defense. Be careful relying on Will Fuller this weekend, because although he returned to practice this week his status for the game is still uncertain.

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Wild Card Round WR/CB Matchups to Exploit

John Brown ($6,800 FanDuel / $6,000 DraftKings) vs Jonathan Joseph

On the season the Texans Defense gave up the forth-most yards-per-game through the air (267.2) and gave up 7.7 yards-per-pass which was the eighth-worst mark in the league. The Texans are also one of just seven teams in the NFL to surrender at least 30 touchdown passes on the year. Jonathan Joseph is getting up there in age and although he's extremely savvy, he's starting to slow down a little bit. If Joseph is ever asked to open it up and keep up with John Brown deep down the field, he may be in trouble.

Cole Beasley ($6,400 FanDuel / $5,600 DraftKings) vs Vernon Hargreaves III

As referenced above, the Texans defense ranks among the worst in the league against the pass. Vernon Hargreaves III has given up more yards while in coverage than any other cornerback on the Texans roster, albeit some of that yardage came while he played for the Buccaneers. Cole Beasley tends to shine when John Brown has a difficult matchup. Although Brown doesn't have a bad matchup this week, the likely game script should force Josh Allen to put the ball in the air more than usual, meaning Beasley should see a healthy number of targets.

Michael Thomas ($8,900 FanDuel / $9,300 DraftKings) vs Xavier Rhodes

Xavier Rhodes has surrendered 707 yards while in coverage this season which ranks worst among all Vikings cornerbacks and opposing quarterbacks have a rating of 127.8 when throwing in in his direction. The Vikings Defense is ok against the run, giving up 4.3 yards-per-carry which puts them around the middle of the pack in the NFL, but it's much easier to throw on them. Thomas has gained over 125 receiving yards and scored in three of his last four games and if the Saints struggle to run the ball this weekend Michael Thomas may see 15+ targets from Drew Brees.

Mohamed Sanu ($5,500 FanDuel / $3,900 DraftKings) vs Tramaine Brock Sr.

The Patriots have struggled to run the ball all season and this weekend they will face the Titans Defense which gives up 4.0 yards-per-carry which is seventh-best in the NFL. The Titans secondary has been the defense's weak link throughout the season, bug Logan Ryan has been their lone bright spot. Ryan figures to cover Julian Edelman out of the slot for most of the game, which leaves the Patriots perimeter receivers with the better matchups.

D.K. Metcalf ($6,200 FanDuel /$6,100 DraftKings) vs Rasul Douglas

The Eagles Defense has been struggling in the secondary throughout the season and things won't get much easier this weekend with Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks coming to town. Although Wilson has struggled a little bit lately, he's a former Super Bowl-winning quarterback. Wilson has been there before, he knows how to win in the biggest situations and he's capable of putting the team on his back. Out of all the Seahawks receivers, D.K. Metcalf has the best matchup. Metcalf runs a 4.33-forty while Rasul Douglas clocks in with a 4.59-forty, so there's a really good chance that he gets deep a time or two this weekend. Tyler Lockett has been hard to trust lately and was only targeted seven times in Week 17 against the 49ers, compared to the 12 targets that Metcalf saw.

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