With COVID hitting hard during 2021, it’s really hit in Week 15, meaning we have an extra DraftKings game slate. With the games that were postponed, we have a slate made up of the Monday night game between Minnesota and Chicago, as well as both postponed divisional games (Washington v Philadelphia, Seattle v Los Angeles).
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The only planned game on the slate has two teams that are pushing for different reasons. Minnesota are wanting to put pressure on teams to keep their remote playoff chances alive.
Kirk Cousins ($5,900) has played really well this season, but seems to have been overlooked by many. So far this season, he has thrown for over 3,500 yards with 27 TDs and just 5 INTs. Even without Adam Thielen, he has managed to keep the wheels moving. If you want to pay down a little, albeit at a larger risk Justin Fields ($5,200) has the rushing ability to give him somewhat a safe floor. The issue is with the surrounding talent not giving him the upside you might want- but worth in some GPPs.
Dalvin Cook ($8,000) is one of the major reasons why the Vikings offense has managed to keep moving. His work on the ground allows the offense to get settled, and open up play-action passing. With Alexander Mattison out of the game, Cook is likely to see even more of a workload against a Chicago defense that has given up an average 23.0 DK points to the position this season. On the other side of the field, the only option is David Montgomery ($5,900) given his workload in the offense. More of a volume play than anything, which is reflected in his price difference to Cook.
The weakness in Chicago’s defense is in the secondary, giving up 38.2 DK points on average to WR’s. That obviously makes Justin Jefferson ($8,000) a popular option, but you can mix in K.J. Osborn ($4,200), as well as TE Tyler Conklin ($4,000) as well. For Chicago, the premier option is Darnell Mooney ($5,000) who has shown his ability to cover big plays this season. If you really want to spend down, Jakeem Grant ($3,900) and Damiere Byrd ($3,300) have seen increased time on the field and have the ability to use their speed to their advantage.
For defense, I’m only really going to consider the Vikings ($3,000) I just don’t want to be rooting against this Vikings defense in playing the Bears, and the difference in price isn’t enough.
This game doesn’t feel like one I particularly want a piece of too heavily. I can’t get behind Taylor Heinicke ($5,300) against the Eagles defense, which really limits the other pieces on his team. Jalen Hurts ($6,500) is the type of QB that is always in the mix when he is on the slate, for no other reason than his rushing ability. Hurts has found his balance between rushing and passing, and found success at both at times.
One area that is easy to determine is the Washington backfield. Antonio Gibson ($6,800) is the only guy that is really worth owning as the only player that has previously seen significant action on the field. With how the game is likely to go, the Eagles backfield is one to consider. If you are playing multiple lineups, then you can vary your lineups around Miles Sanders ($5,700), Kenneth Gainwell ($4,400), and Jordan Howard ($4,200). Although the obvious selection is Sanders, the Eagles could opt to share carries to keep all players fresh.
I’m not overly tempted by the main receivers in this game. Terry McLaurin ($6,500) hasn’t been able to have those big games that he had last season, and the Eagles secondary is an effective unit. Equally paying for DeVonta Smith ($5,800) seems like a risky play, after his late-season struggles in this offense (although that has happened at the same time as Hurts has struggled with fitness). One guy I would mix in is Dallas Goedert ($4,900) who has been an important part of the offense, and has TD upside in the offense too.
With the struggles of Washington on offense, the Eagles ($3,400) are my favorite play on the slate. Their defensive front has found a way to get after the QB, and the secondary has shown their ability to force and convert turnovers.
That was actually longer than I thought it might be!
Seattle @Los Angeles
This is the one I want to target. Both teams have a great rivalry, have effective pieces on offense, and that is why I want to grab as many pieces as I can.
Starting at QB, I don’t feel like you can go wrong. Matthew Stafford ($6,700) has been great for the Rams this season, throwing for just under 3,900 yards, 33 TDs and 9 INTs this season. While Russell Wilson ($6,100) has had a quiet season by his standards he always has the ability to turn it on in games. Of the two, I want Stafford, but in multiple entries, you can go with Wilson.
The Rams’ backfield could find itself in a split between Sony Michel ($5,800) and Darrell Henderson ($5,500). Henderson has missed games recently due to injury, and Michel has looked effective in that spell. That’s the bad news. The good news is that Seattle are awful at stopping RBs, so there should be a good potential of points in total. The Seahawks on the other hand, only really have Rashaad Penny ($5,400) who comes fresh off his big performance against Houston.
This game’s spectacle is through the air though, with Cooper Kupp ($8,800) the most expensive player on the slate. His season has been highlight to highlight, so finding a viable way to get him in your lineup is well worth it. Outside of him, you are looking at big plays from either Van Jefferson ($5,400) and Odell Beckham ($4,900). I’m more likely to go with Beckham as he is slightly cheaper, but they are both going to be reliant on converting deep passes for big gains. A rock bottom option is Kendall Blanton ($2,500) with Tyler Higbee on COVID reserve. Seattle’s side will see DK Metcalf ($6,400) as the primary option, with Tyler Lockett set to miss the game. That makes some cheaper options tempting, so in GPPs I’d be happy playing Gerald Everett ($3,600), Freddie Swain ($3,400) and Will Dissly ($2,500)
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