My last set of NFL DFS picks for a showdown contest were pretty spot on. I didn’t roster Mitchell Trubisky, but I otherwise accounted for every other touchdown in Monday night’s tilt between the Seahawks and Bears.
Russell Wilson could not sense the pressure and really didn’t utilize his running ability, but he was otherwise a fine choice for the MVP slot. Anthony Miller, Trey Burton and Tyler Lockett all found their way into the end-zone, too. Brandon Marshall was a fine fifth option, but didn’t wow anyone.
That team didn’t win all of the money, but I entered it into a 0.25 cent contest and got back 60 cents. I don’t tend to risk much on these one-game slates and I don’t really encourage anyone else to do so, either. That being said, FanDuel is offering a special $100k give away for anyone who slides the first touchdown scorer of the night into their MVP slot (only in the $9 entry contest).
I wouldn’t consume myself too much with that aspect of it, but it’s certainly something to consider if you enter the $9 Thursday game. With that, let’s dive into Thursday night’s matchup between the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns and see which picks you’ll want from this game:
MVP (x1.5 points): Tyrod Taylor, QB, Cleveland Browns ($16k)
I can’t really get around Tyrod Taylor not being my MVP pick here. You can try to go obscenely contrarian and fade both quarterbacks in this one, but Taylor is an elite dual threat weapon.
He can kill the Jets with his legs or burn them over the top. He’s also at home and despite the Browns trading away his deep threat in Josh Gordon, he actually has plenty of weapons and will be facing a team he knows very well from his days with the Bills.
Taylor has upside even in a relatively tough matchup, plus he can be that first TD-scorer for you, either with his arm or legs.
FLEX: Robby Anderson, WR, New York Jets ($10.5k)
My lone Jets player tonight will be Robby Anderson. Sam Darnold will garner ownership just because quarterbacks are viewed as reliable, Isaiah Crowell has appeal with a revenge game ahead of him and nobody in New York gets more targets than Quincy Enunwa.
That’s precisely what makes a pivot to Anderson more appealing. He’s got big play upside and I doubt a lot of people will be on him.
FLEX: Jarvis Landry, WR, Cleveland Browns ($14.5k)
Landry isn’t going to be low-owned, but he has a great role with the Browns and may be due to find the end-zone. The matchup isn’t amazing, but he’s pretty much matchup proof given his role and he can kill you underneath or in the red-zone. Like Taylor, he knows New York very well, so I feel like this matchup may not hurt him as much as it could.
FLEX: David Njoku, TE, Cleveland Browns ($9k)
Njoku has been very quiet to start 2018, but he’s got the size and athleticism to be a beast. This could be a great spot on primetime television for him to bust out and due to the slow start I have to think he’s low-owned.
FLEX: Antonio Callaway, WR, Cleveland Browns ($9.5k)
Callaway dropped 16 fantasy points on the Saints last week and announced his arrival in the NFL in the process. He gets a tough matchup here, but he clearly has playmaking ability and will probably go overlooked with people prioritizing Darnold, Crowell, Enunwa and maybe even Bilal Powell.
Rashard Higgins or Duke Johnson are fun pivots here, but I like Callaway’s explosive ability – especially with Josh Gordon no longer with the team.
I’m rolling with the Browns in this one. Just because it’s Cleveland I think right there it’s possible I’m taking a low-owned side of this game. Even if I’m not, I’m willingly fading some popular plays, so I should differentiate enough. I really do like Cleveland in this one, though, as they’re at home on a short week and at some point this team needs to get a win.
Taylor and Landry both knows this team very well and I’ll be a bit surprised if they don’t hook up for a score. I don’t love the idea of fading both of the top running backs in this one, but Hyde hasn’t been very explosive and Isaiah Crowell showed his downside last week. Hopefully when the Browns get in scoring position Taylor will run it in or connect with the guys you see here in this lineup.
These showdown contests are always tricky, so my main goal is to use players I think can produce, but also could be somewhat contrarian. That worked out on Monday, so let’s hope it helps you cash again tonight. Whatever you decide, I wish you luck. Enjoy the game!