This week's DraftKings main slate for college football is filled with intriguing matchups. Very few games jump off the page as particularly great games for DFS production. This week's slate of games is filled with conference games between teams with extremely high levels of familiarity with the opposition, and many of the teams tend to play very conservative styles of football. While it may not be the best week for expected DFS production, there will certainly be some entertaining and close games across the slate: the Red River Rivalry renews this week at the State Fair of Texas, LSU heads into the swamp to take on the Florida Gators, and Florida State and Miami face off as the teams try to save their respective seasons. Winning scores this weekend project to be slightly lower than previous weeks due to the lack of expected scoring across the slate, but that certainly does not mean that there is no edge left in DFS contests this week. As always, if you have any questions or recommendations for future college football breakdowns, let me know on twitter @ThaGreatZambino!
College football lineups on DraftKings are built entirely different from NFL lineups. The same $50,000 is allotted to build a lineup, but in college football, the lineup is comprised of 1 quarterback, 2 running backs, 3 wide receivers, 1 super-flex, and 1 flex position. The super-flex position can be filled by a player from any position, including quarterback. It is also worth noting that tight ends are included in the wide receiver player pool.
Listed here are the most notable games for DFS purposes. In green are games with the highest projected totals, according to betting markets, and in red are the games with the lowest projected totals on the slate. Try to avoid using too many players in any single lineup from the game(s) in red. On the other hand, the game(s) in green should provide enough points and fantasy points across the board to make multiple pieces on each team viable for fantasy lineups
- Texas @ Oklahoma [NEUTRAL SITE] | Oklahoma (-7), GAME TOTAL: 60
- LSU @ Florida | LSU (-1.5), GAME TOTAL: 44
- Florida State @ Miami (FL) | Miami (-14), GAME TOTAL: 48.5
In most other seasons, a quarterback with a start similar to Will Grier would be headlining the Heisman race. Unfortunately, this year Grier is a distant third (at least) behind two of the more impressive starts in recent memory by Kyler Murray and Tua Tagovailoa. Grier and the West Virginia Mountaineers are doing precisely what was expected: dominating Big 12 defenses with at least 35 points in every game thus far. This weekend, West Virginia takes on Kansas at home. As 28.5-point favorites at home, the Mountaineers' offense is expected to light up the scoreboard once again this week. Will Grier, the slate's highest priced quarterback at $10,400, will likely be a staple in cash-game lineups across the board because of the pass-heavy tendencies of West Virginia's offense. While it may be tough to fit such an expensive player, Will Grier is one that is worth building around this week because of the incredible floor he offers.
Nobody will argue that Sam Ehlinger is the most talented quarterback in the Big 12. In fact, he is not the most talented quarterback in this matchup. However, he is the only quarterback in the matchup priced at a mere $7,400, which is attractive. Ehlinger, quarterbacking the Texas Longhorns' offense, faces off with an Oklahoma defense that has struggled thus far this season. The Red River Rivalry is projected to total over 60-points, and with just a 7-point spread, victory should be within reach for both teams. As 7-point underdogs, Texas' passing game should see higher volume relative to their usual tendencies. A higher-volume passing game against a secondary that ranks 103rd in the nation in marginal efficiency should lead to Ehlinger far exceeding the level of production expected from a quarterback costing just $7,400.
Last week, Trevor Lawrence, unfortunately, was unable to finish his first career start after suffering a head/neck injury early in the game against Syracuse. Despite the injury to their starting quarterback, the Clemson Tigers were able to pull out a thrilling victory over the Syracuse Orange. This week, Lawrence hopes to find a rhythm with the starting unit in his first full-game atop the depth chart. Clemson is favored over Wake Forest by 20-points in another matchup that is projected to total over 60-points between the two teams. Trevor Lawrence's brilliance as a pure passer makes him one of the most exciting freshmen to watch under center in the entire country. Wake Forest ranks 85th in the nation in completion rate allowed and also 73rd in the country in sack rate. Trevor Lawrence should be throwing from a clean pocket for the majority of the game on Saturday afternoon, and at $8,700, he's the top option in the middle-ground between the expensive and value options at quarterback on the slate.
Others to consider: Kyler Murray v. Texas, Clayton Thorson v. Michigan State, Brian Lewerke v. Northwestern
Last week's savior for the Clemson Tigers again finds himself atop the rankings at running back. Travis Etienne has strung together the two best games of his young career in the previous two weeks entering this matchup with the Wake Forest Deamon Deacons. As noted a week ago, Clemson runs the ball substantially better with Trevor Lawrence than they did with Kelly Bryant in at quarterback (over 1.5 yards per carry better.) This weekend, as 20-point favorites over Wake Forest, the expected game script heavily favors the Clemson running game in a fantastic matchup. Wake Forest ranks 97th in marginal efficiency allowed on rushing plays and only stuff opposing running backs on 18.9 percent of rushes (82nd in the country.) Travis Etienne may not need to post the same 40-point performance as last week for Clemson to pull out a win, but his likelihood of posting 20-30 DraftKings points is higher than any other running back on the slate. When looking for a top-end running back to roster this weekend, look no further than Travis Etienne for $8,800.
David Montgomery is one of the most impressive running backs in the nation when he has the ball in his hands. Last season, he broke the record for forced missed tackles, a statistic measured by Pro Football Focus. Iowa State does not frequently enter Big 12 games as a favorite, but that negative game script has not stopped Montgomery from posting impressive numbers. Montgomery consistently carries the ball 20-times each game, and he seemingly approaches 20 DraftKings points every week. His only game in which he did not score at least 15.9 points was in the season opener against Iowa, one of the nation's best defenses.
As mentioned in the Sam Ehlinger write-up, Oklahoma's defense is many things, but intimidating is not one of them. Keaontay Ingram, a true freshman running back for the Texas Longhorns, has stepped on campus and impressed coach Tom Herman since day one. He exited Week 3 early due to injury and subsequently missed Week 4 for Texas. In his return last weekend, Ingram carried the ball 10 times for 68 yards against Kansas State. Ingram effectively split time with Tre Watson last weekend, but in the Red River Rivalry, look for Ingram to get the lion's share of work out of the backfield for Texas. Keaontay Ingram has averaged over 6 yards per carry in every game except 1 this season, and he also contributes through the air. The talent is clearly there, the only thing standing between Ingram and a monster fantasy day is playing time-- this weekend against the Oklahoma Sooners' weak defense is the perfect time for Ingram to break out on a national stage. For just $4,900, Ingram provides the highest ceiling of any running back below $5,000; he makes for a fantastic GPP play, but a very risky cash play.
Others to consider: Karan Higdon v. Maryland, Kennedy McKoy v. Kansas, Nick Brossette v. Florida
Last week, Jalen McCleskey announced his intentions to take advantage of the new redshirt rules (a player can play in up to four games in a year and still redshirt) and transfer out of Oklahoma State. Along with McCleskey's departure, Dillon Stoner is injured and will once again miss Oklahoma State's game this weekend against Iowa State. In their absence last week, Wolf hauled in 6 receptions for 116 yards and a touchdown. Fortunately, Wolf's price has not adjusted to reflect this increased role in the offense, and this weekend for just $4,200, Wolf will almost certainly be one of the most rostered players on the DraftKings main slate.
Felton Davis III
Michigan State's receiving corps has been decimated by injuries this season. Last week, the Spartans' top receiver went down with a broken hand against Central Michigan. Fortunately, Felton Davis III is perfectly capable of stepping into the top spot on the depth chart for the team. Davis III checks in at $5,600 this week for Sparty at home against Northwestern. Northwestern's calling card in previous seasons has been their stout defense, but that has seemingly disappeared this season. Through the air, the team ranks 100th in marginal efficiency allowed, 117th in completion rate allowed, and 94th in sack rate. Opposing quarterbacks are passing from clean pockets consistently against the Wildcats, and they are doing it with resounding success. Michigan State does not feature a particularly prolific passing attack, but when they throw the ball this weekend, Felton Davis III will be the most likely target. 10+ targets for Felton Davis III, depending on how the game plays out, is not out of the picture. That type of volume is rarely seen outside of wide receivers that cost over $7,000. For $5,600, Felton Davis III could be a sneaky option at wide receiver in a matchup that does not jump off the page initially.
David Sills V
David Sills V established himself last season as one of the best red zone targets in college football. This season, he already has five scores for the West Virginia Mountaineers. Sills V is Will Grier's most targeted wide receiver on the roster, and in this juicy matchup against the weak Kansas Jayhawks defense, this game should be no different. Sills V's price over recent weeks has fallen below $8,000, yet he has not seen any drop in opportunity. Last week, against Texas Tech, he failed to find the end zone, a rarity for a player who surpassed 20-touchdowns a season ago. This week, against Kansas, Sills V will likely make up for his shortcomings last weekend on the road. Stacking Sills V with Will Grier is one of the highest upside duos in the nation. This week, with Sills V's suppressed price, it is a much more feasible option, combining to cost about $18,000 total.
Others to consider: Gary Jennings, Jr. v. Kansas, Flynn Nagel v. Michigan State, Tee Higgins v. Wake Forest
TEXAS @ OKLAHOMA [NEUTRAL SITE], GAME TOTAL: 60
In one of the most anticipated matchups of the year for each team, Texas and Oklahoma face off at their normal neutral site location in Week 6 of this college football season. Oklahoma's offense under Lincoln Riley has been one of the most prolific in the entire nation year-in and year-out. As previously mentioned, Oklahoma pairs this stellar offense with an underwhelming defense. Texas' offense will have ample opportunity to light up the scoreboard and turn this game into a shootout against the Sooners' fast-paced offensive attack. On Oklahoma's side of the ball, quarterback Kyler Murray is one of the most electrifying players in the country and a legitimate Heisman contender. Look for Murray and wide receivers Marquise Brown & CeeDee Lamb to stuff the stat sheet this week and turn this game into a shootout. For Texas, quarterback Shane Buechele is significantly underpriced for his expected production in a shootout like this. Keaontay Ingram at running back is the most talented running back on the Longhorns' roster, however, as a freshman, he has not seen the dominant share of snaps yet. This is Ingram's chance on a national stage to become a household name. Finally the primary wide receivers for Texas that are viable in a quarterback/wide receiver stack are Collin Johnson & Lil'Jordan Humphrey. These two wide receivers profile very similarly. Both have 37 or 38 target this season and have scored 3 touchdowns each. Lil'Jordan Humphrey is perfectly built for PPR scoring systems, as a wide receiver who typically runs shallow or intermediate routes and gets peppered with targets underneath, Humphrey has the potential for a ceiling 10-target game this weekend. Collin Johnson is likely the more talented receiver of the two and he tends to run deeper routes. Johnson's explosiveness surpasses Humphrey's and subsequently provides a higher ceiling. This higher ceiling is a main component of his increased price on DraftKings.
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