Welcome to Week 8 - The NFL Ambush, a full guide into this weekend's NFL DFS Main Slate of action to help you become a better player and find some success. This is a wonderful slate of games this weekend. We do not have one game like the Seattle-Arizona game based on first glance, and with some cooler weather and wind coming into play, I suspect we see just a nice quiet afternoon of football.
Last weekend, we knew it would be high scoring as soon as a few value spots in great situations popped up at running back. Usually value RBs who are on good teams will produce more than any other value spot in football DFS and with that and the full slate including the SNF game we saw extremely high scores because folks got the ceiling game from Davante Adams and Tyler Lockett at fairly strong ownership. Do not be afraid of that happening this weekend and if we have another solid week of picks we should see others fail with bad traps.
The first thing we must do each Week is understand the landscape of the slate and any injury or weather or miscellaneous information that we need to monitor from the time this article comes out (Saturdays) until lock on Sunday at 1PM EST.
Injuries and Playing Time Concerns
Nothing that is significant to this slate that we should be monitoring going into Sunday.
- Allen Robinson is IN for Chicago.
- Tevin Coleman is questionable but projected to come off IR and play for the 49ers
A lot is being made about the weather this weekend and after all we are into November. But the storm that came across and dumped rain and wind on the Panthers-Falcons game is leaving a trail of wind behind it in a few key games this weekend. Overall yes it is a slight impact to these games but not enough that you should be completely avoiding them.
- Las Vegas at Cleveland - Wind, should have an impact at times.
- Tennessee at Cincinnati - Wind, not as bad as the game above and this stadium in my mind should control it ok.
- Minnesota at Green Bay - Very windy and cold
- New Orleans at Chicago - Windy and cold
After last week when we had a ton of value drive the chalkiest and highest scoring slate of the year, we have a nice balance of player ownership projections in Week 8. Here's the quick summary of what the projected chalk is as of Saturday morning.
QB: Jimmy G, Tannehill, Burrow
RB: Hunt, Henry, Williams, Taylor, Kamara
WR: Adams, Lockett, Allen, Brown, Mims, Aiyuk
TE: Waller, Kittle
DEF: Chiefs, Packers, Bills
THE AMBUSH PLAYS
MILE HIGH MIKE
Ambush Play #1 - Mike Williams is the WR you should lock into lineups this weekend
We begin right off the bat with my favorite under the radar player and game of the weekend. The Chargers will visit the Broncos this weekend and in a weird twist the city which hosted a snow game last weekend will be one of the few good football weather spots for this weekend. Game time temps of 60 degrees, no wind and clear skies for this one and the now vertical offense of the Chargers coming into take on a Broncos team that Mike Williams has had his way with recently. Williams has hauled in five catches in each of the last three meetings vs Denver with 65, 74 and 114 yards in those games and that was with Philip "low aDOT" Rivers throwing him the ball. Now with the vertical game of Justin Herbert he should easily be in line to go over 100 yards receiving with a big play touchdown and I'm pretty sure the math checks out that a five catch, 120 yard, one touchdown game would be more than a gem at his dirt cheap $4,400 price on DraftKings this weekend. But my bold call of the weekend is Mike Williams not only going over 100 yards receiving, but scoring two touchdowns.
He is this week's D.J. Moore and will see the best opportunities as Denver should be able to shut down Keenan Allen this week.
Expectations: Mike Williams, 6-137-2. I expect nothing less big fella.
LAMAR JACKSON'S THRILLER
Ambush Play #2 - Lamar Jackson has a remember me game vs the Steelers.
This is a weekend where the Quarterback position is like an Island. Up top on the salary scale, Patrick Mahomes is obviously going to produce against the Jets but is quite costly ($8,100 on DK, $9,200 on FD) and at the bottom a chalky Jimmy Garoppolo may wind up being the highest owned Quarterback everywhere as a cheap play vs Seattle. I don't have anything bad to say about either one of those guys other than I think they get you by at their prices. Meaning Mahomes gets a 25 and Jimmy G gets a 17. Just blah scores considering their prices. So we can go out on an Island and look elsewhere for our Quarterback this week because the ownership is going to be spread out and we don't have to worry about potentially chasing a chalky 40-burger like last week when Kyler Murray was in a smash spot.
Enter 5% owned Lamar Jackson...
There are two things which appear as warts for Lamar Jackson. One is the obvious challenges he has at times with accuracy and that is what it is and it no doubt has been bad this season but coming off a BYE week and with his knee getting fully healed up I trust that will start to at least get back to good for him. The second though is that the more a defense can see a rushing quarterback like him, the better they are going to fair. So over time I can see the AFC North teams finally start to get comfortable learning how to handle him.
The sneaky thing with Pittsburgh though is that they've only seen him ONCE because he sat out the final game of the season last year when these two teams met. In that one game Lamar ran for 70 yards and led the Ravens to a win and now focused on this years matchup he gets the Steelers without Devin Bush and a defense who is very good in perception but honestly has shown some warts lately giving up a ton of late offense to the Titans last week, giving up a comeback to the Eagles before that and the thing Pittsburgh does very well is cover traditional #1 WR. Well guess what, Lamar couldn't throw to a traditional #1 WR if he had one, so joke is on you Pittsburgh. Lamar is going to rush for 100 yards, throw for 200 and account for three touchdowns. Do the math, that'll be good for you in DFS.
Expectations: Lamar throws over 200, rushes over 100 yards, and accounts for three touchdowns with minimum 1 on the ground.
THEY ARE THE TITANS, THE MIGHTY MIGHTY TITANS
Ambush Play #3 - A.J. Brown, Ryan Tannehill, Titans defense lead the Titans over the Bengals in a blowout
There is no game this weekend which I feel is tilted in a more one sided affair than the one between the Titans and the Bengals. Cincinnati's defense should have zero success slowing down anything the Titans want to do on offense. If Derrick Henry decides to run off tackle he'll eat up the edge of the Bengals D-Line and their linebackers and if Tannehill drops back to pass he'll have all day to find the hottest WR A.J. Brown who is on a streak right now and should be #1 on our Wide Receiver radars this weekend after Mike Williams.
The Bengals offensive line, which was below average to begin with, is now down three starters and Joe Mixon their main weapon is out once again. This all points to the Titans having a dominant road win, which would make it eight straight road wins in the regular season for this team which is the better coached, deeper and more talented team in this game. Everything points to getting a Titan or two or three in to give us great production and the main guys to love in this game are Tannehill, Henry, Brown, Jonnu Smith, Titans Defense. The Ambush prediction is that Tannehill rushes one in, Henry scores, Brown scores, Jonnu scores and the Titans defense seals it off with a touchdown of their own as the Titans drop 41 points on the Bengals in a 41-13 domination.
Expectations: Remember the Titans when setting your lineups as they blow out the Bengals
FADING GEORGE KITTLE SCARES ME
Ambush Play #4 - Lock in George Kittle as TE #1
I don't know about you but as a Saints fan I have nightmares about a San Francisco 49ers Tight End who wears #85 running rampant down the field in a critical situation. (Vernon Davis in 2011, George Kittle in 2019). So yes, this qualifies as a Halloween reference too and Kittle is the way we should get exposure to Jimmy G chalk this weekend. Simply put he is the only consistent passing target for the 49ers this weekend due to various injuries on the offensive side and they're facing a defense who hasn't slowed down anything this season. My immediate thought is that Seattle will just come out and do what they can to take Kittle out of the game and make Garoppolo beat them with his other targets but the problem with that logic is that it assumes Seattle is capable of doing that and they're not.
I do like some other TE like Jonnu Smith and Darren Waller and feel that at 2 TE week is very viable because Kittle is essentially the 49ers top WR.
Expectations: George Kittle has a big reception day with 9 catches for the San Francisco 49ers as TE1 on the slate.
THE AUTUMN WIND IS NOT A RAIDER, IT'S KAREEM HUNT!
Ambush Play #5 - The Autumn Wind this weekend is Pumpkin Orange not Silver and Black.
Sorry Raiders fans, but as much as I want to draw a correlation to all the wind in these games to the famous NFL Films "The Autumn Wind is a Pirate" poem the right spin on this game is the Kareem Hunt smash spot as this weekends top Running Back. With Odell Beckham going down last week and the Browns about to head into their BYE we should expect them to come out and lean on their offensive line in the ground game to control the game on the ground in one of the games with a lot of wind in it.
The Raiders have been gashed on the ground in their road games this season to the tune of 150+ yards per game and that features road spots versus the Patriots, Panthers and Chiefs. Not terrible rushing teams but also not at the level of the Browns who are averaging 35 rushing attempts as a home team this season. We can expect Hunt to get 20+ carries, catch a bunch of quick screen passes and get all of the goal line opportunities this weekend. Just don't over think this one and lean on the ground game for the Browns in a windy autumn game.
Expectations: Kareem Hunt over 100 yards rushing, 30 yards receiving and a touchdown.
CROSS EM OFF SPOTS
Ambush Fades of the Week -- The Week 8 Fades
This was a spot on win last week. We need games to fade with so many high scoring totals, so here's the games/teams I am avoiding this weekend and why.
- New England at Buffalo: Just an ugly projected game.
- New York Jets: Yes, they're cheap. And I would be cheap too if I was in the DraftKings player pool because I wouldn't do much either.
- Miami Dolphins: I'm gonna wait and see what we get with Tua rather than trying to be the smartest person in the room.
- Vikings at Packers: This is the true fade here because the other spots above really aren't popular.
Expectation: None of the spots above do enough to damage you in tournaments by not having them.
RECAP OF AMBUSH PLAYS
- Mike Williams (Chargers) torches the Broncos.
- Lamar Jackson has a flashback to 2019 and shines on the ground
- Remember the Titans
- I'm too scared to fade George Kittle
- A villain big and bold, Kareem Hunt steals the show from the Raiders in the Autumn Wind
Copy and paste exactly what I mentioned above in the Ambush section as the reason here. Island week at quarterback and going back to the #1 Island QB this weekend.
Really do not see how Tennessee offense winds up punting which means the QB has to produce big time or its a Derrick Henry 4 TD game and typically when the offense is able to move at will the Quarterback is the one who benefits with the safest floor.
Cant like Williams to get 2 TD on big plays downfield without considering Herbert. The running game for the Chargers is really inconsistent without Ekeler and Hebert has been trusted to air it out a ton. If you are scared off of weather in other spots then why don't you love Herbert in this great weather game?
Just missed my top 3: Jimmy G and Derek Carr
At the start of the week Jimmy G was my 1a Quarterback that I really loved in this game. I have done a 180 on him because the ceiling just is not there and a lot of that has to do with my expectation that San Francisco activates Tevin Coleman for this game and will have enough on the ground to slow this game down to limit Jimmy G from having a massive game.
Not touching: Joe Burrow
Nobody should get the ball more this week than Hunt who has to get the Browns into their BYE week by carrying the offense on his back.
Melvin Gordon III
I heard there was a revenge RB this weekend and yet nobody is playing him? Hello Melvin Gordon at home in a game I like to be back and forth more than anyone else likes. Gordon doesn't have to worry about his quarterback having a dominant game like Lev Bell does and unlike Lev Bell, Gordon actually might want to stick it to his former team.
THE VALUE POOL
This is only a DraftKings play where he remains too cheap considering he'll catch a few passes as well. At some point we're going to see the A.J. Dillon volume game and if the Packers defense shines this week then that might finally be the result. Temper expectations with Williams but if you need a $6100 solid floor play then look here.
You attack the Bears on the ground and as you learned last week once again, Alvin Kamara is half RB half WR so the longer the Saints are banged up at WR the more we should be considering Lat Murray in games where the running game should be leaned on. Weather, plus the Saints having nothing at WR who can beat the Bears makes this a game where Murray's touches will increase even more. He's affordable and scored twice in this same matchup last year (granted there was no Kamara then, but Thomas did play in that game).
Tevin Coleman (Questionable)
He's back and with the 49ers having a lot of injuries at RB we have to think he gets enough volume at a low price - this is a much stronger play on the 4PM only slates because we gotta get final confirmation that they're going to activate him after finally practicing this week.
Just missed the cut, but I don't mind: Always Kamara, Jonathan Taylor
Not touching: Le'Veon Bell
He will finish between 11 and 13 DK points. Everyone keeps calling this a revenge narrative spot and I want someone to explain to me how someone who got $28 million the release he asked for is angry about facing the Jets this week? The people saying that are the ones who want revenge on Adam Gase because piling on the Jets is cool and trendy and the type of big media stuff that the general public will buy into when it's just noise. Sure, he'll probably score this week but he is still going to have his touches managed for the long haul and is only a viable play on DraftKings where they wanted to be cute and keep him cheap knowing he'll gain some ownership and get those casuals to throw in some lineups thinking they have a free square for all the wrong reasons. I'll pass...
MT. RUSHMORE OF RECEIVERS THIS WEEK
Mike Williams (Chargers)
Broke him down above, he's my #1 WR point per $ on the slate.
A.J. Brown (Titans)
When A.J. Brown is healthy he is one of my favorite WR in all of the NFL and right now he looks so good when they get him the ball in the open field. Cincinnati has nothing that can consistently slow down Brown and I wouldn't be shocked if we saw the Titans get him a rushing attempt that he turns up to the house.
D.K. Metcalf (Seahawks)
Double down on the former Ole Miss Wide Receivers this weekend and play Metcalf in your Kittle lineups. The whole world saw Lockett go off last weekend and for the second time this year they'll run to Lockett a week after he went off with disappointment. Not us as Metcalf will go back to being Wilson's most trusted option.
Marquise Brown (Ravens)
While I trust going Lamar Jackson as a lone island play there's no doubt some temptation to want to pair him up with the big play ability that Brown has. Pittsburgh's pass defense looks stout on paper but has shown a few holes in recent weeks and if Lamar is having success on the ground as I anticipate then Brown will benefit with a big play in the passing game.
VOLUME MID RANGE WR OF THE WEEK
Robert Woods (Rams)
High volume game for Robert Woods on the road this week. His DK price and volume in a full PPR format makes him the best mid range option this week as he's basically this weeks Terry McLaurin.
VALUE WR OF THE WEEK
It's honestly Mike Williams on DraftKings and no need to go deeper as I expect the value WR to flop this week.
Like, but won't have because of too many other options: T.Y. Hilton
Not touching: Denzel Mims, Kendrick Bourne, Cooper Kupp, Tyler Lockett
To me if you do not have one of these three TE's this weekend you are dead.
An elite player who should see 30% of his team's targets against one of the worst passing defenses in the league. That's what I could have wrote about Kittle above, but instead I wanted to fill the space a little more for you.
The middle of the Cleveland defense has been picked apart all season long and when the Raiders do throw we should see it going through Waller the most.
If not for so many other options on the Titans offense against Cincinnati he would have been higher on this list. Hard to trust him over Kittle/Waller though.
TE Darts: Nobody else
Not touching: Everyone else
The Saints have an advantage on the defensive line against the Bears and with wind potentially impacting the play-calling for the Bears the Saints communication issues in their secondary should be able to get hidden. Expect four sacks from the Saints defense in a low scoring game.
Another spot where I am picking on a bad offensive line as the Titans defense should be able to feast on getting after Burrow.
There's nothing wrong with the Chiefs this weekend but the value of the Titans and Saints compared to the Chiefs price is why they're ranked higher.
Questions and Answers
QUESTION: Who is getting overlooked this week and why is it Justin Herbert?
It's not Josh Allen who I think is getting overlooked this week. It's Herbert.
QUESTION: Random off the wall prediction?
Lev Bell gets hurt and fumbles leading to a Jets D/ST touchdown. The only points the Jets score all day.
QUESTION: Favorite 1PM and 4PM only stacks and plays?
4PM - Chargers and Broncos. I have a hard time finding faith in many of the Broncos receivers as they're banged up and it should be Melvin Gordon all game long, but if you want to go heavy on a game this would be the one on the 4PM slate. Herbert-Williams-Gordon starting things off as the core with Kittle/Metcalf from the Niners/Seahawks game.
QUESTION: What's the game you do not have a lot of players in which scares you to go off?
San Francisco and Seattle. Just Metcalf and Kittle as the top options on both teams with Coleman in a 4PM only lineup.
QUESTION: Favorite Bets of the week?
Chargers/Broncos OVER 44.5
Welcome to Week 8 - The NFL Ambush, a full guide into this weekend's NFL DFS Main Slate of action to help you become a better player and find some success. This is a wonderful slate of games this weekend. We do not have one game like the Seattle-Arizona game based on first glance, and with some cooler weather and wind coming into play, I suspect we see just a nice quiet afternoon of football. Subscribe for full article
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