Welcome into the NFL DFS Building Blocks designed specifically for showdown contests this season! If you’ve never read my main slate Building Blocks article, I will be highlighting my favorite overall plays and how I intend to build my main lineup. I will be providing both core plays and prop picks for every primetime game this season, and you can gain access to those here. With that being said, let’s dive into the first game of the season…
Top Overall Plays
Monday features a two game slate, that might contain better games than the entire Week 2 main slate did. Josh Allen and Jalen Hurts are two of the best fantasy QB’s, and they both take the field on Monday. It’s hard to argue with either of them, and I think both will be in consideration for my main team. Allen draws the Titans as a big home-favorite coming off basically a bye-week since they haven’t played in 11 days. Hurts is also installed as home favorite over Minnesota, coming off one of his best games as a pro. These two are going to project similarly, but I think Vikings/Eagles has a better chance to shoot out.
Cook vs Henry is another popular decision for lineup builders tonight, and I think the choice is clear. There’s no questioning Henry’s ceiling, but it’s always tough for me to trust him as a big underdog. His playing time floor increases with Dontrell Hilliard out, but it’s still so easy to see him getting scripted almost completely out of this game. That being said, he has a fantastic history against this Bills defense. Cook , however, is much less likely to get scripted out and the Eagles run defense looked very vulnerable in Week 1. I think the Eagles have one of the sharper staffs in football when it comes to game-planning, and I don’t anticipate them covering Justin Jefferson with linebackers like the Packers did. Jefferson can still smash, but I think Cook can really get going tonight. I prefer him to Henry straight up if choosing one.
Top Value Plays
McKenzie was a chalky value play in their Thursday night game against the Rams, and the same situation could arise with Gabe Davis looking unlikely to play. McKenzie and Jamison Crowder both saw slot-time in that game, but Davis led the team in snaps so him missing would 100% bump all the ancillary Bills pass catchers. He’s viable in all formats, and is currently projecting for around the same ownership as DeVonta Smith who is $4,500.
Austin Hooper is pacing the field in current ownership projections at the TE position — but give me Irv Smith straight up. Smith, like Hooper, was a major let-down in Week 1. However, there is reason for optimism moving forward. For starters, that is likely the least we see Smith play all season. He missed a ton of time preseason due to a thumb injury, and it’s clear they were taking it easy on him in that game. He should continue to see more time moving forward, and this is a great spot to breakout. Philly has been one of our favorite teams to stream TE’s against in recent seasons citing their weaker LB play. They allowed the most catches to the position in 2021. We’re clearly grasping at straws on this slate, but if he’s lower owned than Hooper I will side with Big Irv.
This is an interesting one. Kyle Phillips dominated the attention from Ryan Tannehill in that Week 1 loss to the Giants, but he looks like a true game-time decision on Monday. If he’s ruled out, that would heighten my interest even further on Burks. Burks had a pretty bad training camp by all standards, but there is still some hope. He was one of just two rookie WR’s to garner over 30% of his teams Air Yards in Week 1…and he did it on a sub-40% snap-rate! I think it’s likely we see him on the field more tonight even if Phillips is active. Regardless, he is a worthy dart on a small slate like this.
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)