Week 1 NFL DFS Preseason FanDuel Picks – August 11th

You should be cashing if you’ve been rolling with my preseason NFL DFS picks. My rosters have cashed or competed for a top spot on all three slates I’ve done so far. I actually got a little lucky with yesterday’s two-game slate, as there just weren’t many guys who did much.

Several of my picks were pretty chalky. Sam Darnold, Trenton Cannon and Calvin Ridley all had ownership over 36%.

In hindsight, I should have figured Atlanta wouldn’t have let Ridley play too much. Someone like Charles Johnson would have been a way better play and considering I was just 20 fantasy points out of first place in my big GPP, that alone would have given me a shot at big money.

Darnold and Cannon were chalky, but they were still the right calls. Ryan Switzer, Kerryon Johnson and the Jets defense were all good calls as well.

I also had Isaac Whitney in my FLEX spot and he got just 1.7 fantasy points. He was 3.8% owned, so had he busted off like he’d been doing in camp, we really could have been in business.

Fortunately my preseason daily fantasy football picks were still better than the majority of the field and I turned $5 into $16 on the night. Hopefully you did the same. Either way, it’s back to the grind as we approach another two-game NFL DFS preseason slate tonight at FanDuel:

QB: Josh Rosen – Arizona Cardinals ($6k)

Per usual, I don’t want much ownership of any normal starters as week one of preseason play leaks into Saturday night. For me, that rules out the likes of Kirk Cousins, Case Keenum, Philip Rivers and Sam Bradford. It’s quite possible all of those guys will sit out or be extremely limited.

On the off chance any of them are locked into a quarter or more, though, I’d certainly shift my focus a bit at the quarterback position.

That’s unlikely, so you’re looking at viable backups that will see around two quarters of play and aren’t terrible talents. After all, a guy can be out there all game and if he’s not any good, it really won’t help you.

Josh Rosen was quite good at UCLA and he figures to be the future under center for Arizona. He won’t win the starting job out of the gates, but the Cardinals should still like to get him a lot of preseason action in case the ever brittle Sam Bradford succumbs to his yearly injury.

I like Rosen’s talent and he should play quite a bit with a slew of solid Cardinals wide receivers that are jockeying for position behind Larry Fitzgerald.

While Rosen leads the way here, I also have my eye on Broncos backup, Chad Kelly.

Kelly slide during the draft two years ago due to a wrist injury, but he’s actually an intriguing talent and may already be ready to supplant Paxton Lynch for the right to play behind Case Keenum. If we catch word he’s going to get serious action tonight, he makes for an elite pivot off what I assume will be a very chalky Rosen.

Sometimes you need to eat the chalk and this two-game slate feels like as good a time as any. I’ll look at Kelly and maybe even Lynch, Mike Glennon, Cardale Jones or Trevor Siemian for alternate GPP plays. Rosen is my top guy at QB tonight, however.

RB: De’Angelo Henderson – Denver Broncos ($6k)

Devontae Booker and Royce Freeman will garner more attention, so I’ll stick with the Broncos but pivot to current #3 back, De’Angelo Henderson. He flashed upside last year and could be a nice fallback plan for Denver if Booker or Freeman don’t corral the starting gig.

RB: T.J. Logan – Arizona Cardinals ($6k)

Another guy I like at running back is Cardinals backup, T.J. Logan. He’s an explosive player who should have a shot at return duty and a role as a receiver out of the backfield. He’s smaller and it’s worth wondering if he can hack it as an inside runner, but I can’t imagine David Johnson plays much in this game.

Logan’s speedy could be on display early and often in this one. You can also consider Chase Edmunds, who has been a big name in camp. I’m going to assume he’ll garner more ownership and pivot to Logan, however.

There are some big name rushers on this slate. DJ, Melvin Gordon and Dalvin Cook are all in play if they hit the field. I just don’t trust any of them to get more than a handful of touches.

WR: DaeSean Hamilton – Denver Broncos ($6k)

I doubt Denver’s top receivers play that much and that could include explosive rookie, Courtland Sutton. He could garner some ownership and is on the board just because he can score quickly, but I’d rather get Hamilton, who should see the field more.

He’s a great option to pair with Chad Kelly tonight, but I also like him as a stand alone play.

WR: Christian Kirk – Arizona Cardinals ($6k)

I need a receiver or two to pair with Josh Rosen and rookie Christian Kirk makes the most sense. Chad Williams is also worth a look here, but he’s been banged up and I’m a bigger fan of Kirk’s talent.

The Cardinals still don’t know who has what role behind Larry Legend, so I wouldn’t be shocked if Kirk and some of the younger guys get decent run in this first preseason contest.

WR: Laquon Treadwell – Minnesota Vikings ($6k)

I suspect we won’t see much of Adam Thielen or Stefon Diggs, which may open up a lot of playing time for Treadwell. Minnesota drafted him to be a stud a couple of years ago and he’s been slow to develop.

Perhaps he never will break out, but if it’s going to happen, it probably needs to happen in 2018. Maybe a strong preseason run will propel him to a bigger role. If so, it could start tonight.

TE: Jake Butt – Denver Broncos ($6k)

Butt is very interesting, as he’s a rock solid receiver but doesn’t have a guaranteed role due to missing all of last year with a shredded knee. It’s possible Denver keeps him in bubble wrap, but right now he’s no better than the third TE on their depth chart.

There’s a good chance Butt needs to prove himself to earn a role for 2018 and flashing in preseason action may be the best way for him to do that. As long as he isn’t inactive, he’s probably my favorite tight end on this slate.

Kyle Rudolph and Ricky Seals-Jones are potentially more popular (and likely chalky) options, but I doubt they play much. I’d be more interested in Denver’s tight end battle as well as who the Chargers throw out there to try to replace the injured Hunter Henry. I’m probably sticking with Butt, but someone like Braedon Bowman has appeal and could be pretty contrarian.

FLEX: Mike Williams – Los Angeles Chargers ($6k)

I mentioned Chad Williams and will also look at backups like Brice Butler, Artavis Scott and even Greg Little.

Star receivers like Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, Keenan Allen, Larry Fitzgerald and the Vikings guys are worth noting if they actually play and are guaranteed at least a quarter. I’m not going there, though.

Instead, I’m looking at Cardinals guys competing for a role, Broncos backups trying to make the team or Williams, who is buried in L.A. but has the talent to demand more playing time. I’d prefer to catch some word on just how much the Bolts will use him tonight, but he’s very interesting.

DEF: Arizona Cardinals ($6k)

Denver or Minnesota should garner the most ownership, but this is preseason and the starting units won’t play more than a quarter. All bets are off after that, so I’d rather play my defense based on the backups they’ll be taking on most of the night.

Arizona has always been a solid and deep defense, so I could get the best of both worlds here. Assuming the L.A. starters don’t play much, they’ll be facing Geno Smith and Cardale Jones. The only Chargers player I’m on right now is Mike Williams, so this feels like the defense to play to me.

I think it all starts with who you’re using at quarterback. I’m 95% Rosen and 5% Kelly at the moment and I’ll be mixing and matching different Broncos/Cardinals receivers because of that. Everyone is the same price during NFL DFS preseason play, so the biggest obstacle is making sure you don’t use inactives or roster guys who aren’t going to play long enough to accrue serious stats.

I think this is a strong GPP team and if you want to use it as it stands or mix in your own daily fantasy football preseason picks, that’s up to you. Either way, I wish you luck and enjoy the games!


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