Very often, success in DFS is dependent on correctly predicting the game script. A good place to start is the Las Vegas over/under and point spread. However, sometimes players and teams have extra motivation. Sometimes this motivation will exceed the game script. Predicting these outliers can lead your team to success. In this article, we’ll identify some items that go beyond the numbers. Those little bits of extra motivation that can lead to big DFS success. A place we call Narrative Street.
New England Patriots vs. New York Jets
This week is filled with plenty of tough division matches, but the one that has all DFS players excited is the 14 point favorite Patriots at home against the struggling Jets. This game has blowout written all over it as Patriots have proven time and again that they don't take their foot off the gas for anyone and the Jets have proven that they have already given up. All Patriots players are in play this week, but the challenge might be finding out which guy will score the points. Tom Brady and Stephen Gostkowski would be easy to pick, and maybe even the Patriot defense since the Jets are projected just to score less than 14 points. Dion Lewis has his best game of the season last week with 104 yards from scrimmage against the Broncos, and could be in for another big game against the Jets this week. Load up on the Patriots this week and you won't be disappointed.
Oakland Raiders vs. Indianapolis Colts
The shoot-out of the week is Indianapolis at Oakland. The Raiders have already clinched a playoff birth, but need the win to secure the division and a home playoff game. The Colts are on the bubble, but still in the hunt for the division title. Both teams are going to air it out, which means good things for both QBs Andrew Luck and Derek Carr. Luck's favorite T.Y.Hilton is an excellent option to stack with him and Michael Crabtree is still value-priced on the bigger sites, making him an attractive option for the Raiders. A couple sneaky options might be to target the running backs in this game though. While most of the chalk will be on LeVeon Bell or David Johnson, Frank Gore and Latavius Murray might be the guys to target. Gore had a solid game last week against a stingy Minnesota defense, putting up 115 yards from scrimmage. Murray has had three consecutive weeks with more than 90 yards from scrimmage against Buffalo, Kansas City and San Diego. In a game with this much scoring, all of the key offensive targets could be in play.
Travis Benjamin WR San Diego at Cleveland Browns
Benjamin was a 4th round draft pick for the Browns back in 2012. After three years of sub-standard performance, he had a break-out year in 2015 with 966 receiving yards and 5 TDS. He leveraged that performance to sign a big off-season contract with the Chargers during the offseason, where's he's been a sporadic receiving option for DFS players. He's been a guy to fade lately, with just six receptions over his last five games, but this week against the Browns, he might be asking for the ball more than usual. He's a potential GPP play this week.
Demaryius Thomas WR DEN at Kansas City Chiefs
The NFL has only two games on the slate for Christmas Day, but Denver at Kansas City is one of them. The Broncos are on the brink of playoff elimination and the Chiefs are trying to stay in the hunt for the division title. Vegas has the game projected at just 37.5 points so there shouldn't be a ton of scoring. That being said Demaryius Thomas will be celebrating his 29th birthday in prime time, and it would be a great #NarrativeStreet if he went off on the Chiefs. His price is pretty low on the main sites, and he is a great value pick. The birthday celebrating will be just a bonus present.
Dallas Cowboys vs. Detroit Lions (Monday Night)
With the New York Giants loss on Thursday night, the Cowboys have clinched the division and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Jerry Jones has publically said the Cowboys won't rest their starters, but that just might be for show. Even if guys like Ezekiel Elliott and Dez Bryant start the game, there is no guarantee that they will finish. Approach any Cowboy player with caution this week and next.
Good luck this weekend!