NE (21.5) @ IND (16.25)
New England Patriots Overview
This game has the higher total of the two Saturday matchups and is likely to be more productive from a DFS perspective. Quarterback ownership should reflect this, but it’s not like this is projected to be some kind of high-scoring barn-burner affair. I guess you could consider it the lesser of two evils on Saturday’s slate. As such, Mac Jones should be a popular quarterback option, probably the second highest-owned on the slate.
The Patriots running back situation is hazy this week as Damien Harris and Brandon Bolden are questionable. If either were to sit, Rhamondre Stevenson would become a better option. If both sit, he becomes a major priority. Bolden is primarily out of the picture if Harris plays, while Stevenson remains viable. Harris will be the RB1 for New England if he does suit up. Assuming they do all play, we should get very little ownership on all of them since we have three workhorse backs to target this week. This could be a good GPP angle to differentiate our lineups in big contests.
Jacobi Meyers should get the vast majority of the Patriots’ receiving corps ownership. This gives us some excellent opportunities to get different in large-field tournaments. Kendrick Bourne and Nelson Agholor should be very low-owned on this slate. It may even out a bit, but based on current ownership projections, Meyers may be literally ten times as owned as Bourne. Tight-ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith should also get minimal ownership on this slate, particularly Smith. This is probably one of the best leverage spots we have, considering that Mac Jones will be a standard QB option. Yet, the vast majority of the field will simply stack him with Jacobi Meyers. There are plenty of scenarios where other Patriots pass-catchers outscore Meyers. You can also stack Jones with Meyers and one or more low-owned pass-catchers.
The Patriots DST should be significantly lower-owned than the defenses in the Raiders/Browns game. As I mentioned in my general strategy outlook for two-game slates in part one, playing players against your DST is entirely viable. A way to get different would be to play the defenses from this game, even if stacking more offensive players from it. It is a common misconception that the path to success for a DFS defense is to not give up points. This is somewhat true, but the way to put up slate-breaking scores is with sacks, turnovers, and defensive touchdowns. A DST can cough up plenty of points and still outscore other defenses.
Indianapolis Colts Overview
By a considerable margin, Carson Wentz will be the most rostered quarterback on this slate. You generally wouldn’t be saying that on a more extensive slate, but this is a small affair, and he is just the most appealing option across the board. I see a lot of merit in playing other quarterbacks on this slate, considering that Wentz may draw upwards of 50% ownership.
Jonathan Taylor should literally be the chalkiest player on the slate and may approach 90% ownership. As I’ve said a few times now, there’s just not a lot to spend up for, so you can basically do whatever you want. There isn’t much reason you wouldn’t play a workhorse back with the kind of ceiling that Taylor possesses on this slate, outside of ownership considerations. He’s doubtful to fail, barring injury. This may be chalk worth eating as it’s pretty easy to find other ways to differentiate your lineup. He also goes well on the other side of a Mac Jones stack featuring some of Jones’ lower-owned receivers.
Michael Pittman will be very popular in the Colts’ passing game, probably eclipsing 50% ownership. He’ll also be commonly stacked with Wentz. We should get a significant ownership discount on the other Colts receivers, such as Ty Hilton and Zach Pascal. Like the Mac Jones situation, an easy way to gain some leverage in large-field contests is to play lower-owned receivers here, in and outside Wentz stacks. Jack Doyle and Mo Alie-Cox should handle most of the tight end work. Neither are great options, but both should be low-owned, particularly Alie-Cox.
We will also get low ownership on the Colts defense, just as we will with the Pats. The same analysis regarding the New England defense applies here. I really like playing these defenses, even if playing this game heavily.
Get different, and don’t be afraid to leave salary on the table if it works with the build. If you’re playing a lineup that consists of all of the most apparent players, which you can mostly do on this slate due to pricing, you have next to no chance to win large-field contests. I highly suggest incorporating at least one to two very low-owned plays into each and every lineup in the big millionaire-maker NFL GPP on DraftKings. If this leads to salary left on the table, so be it. If not, that is fine too. There is no reason to enter these top-heavy payout GPPs with big prizes to first, if not gunning for the top spot. Good luck on Saturday!