Week 12 DraftKings player pool
With news breaking and rosters doing the Saturday night shuffle like never before, week 12 just got wild. There is a lot of noise going into Sunday surrounding newfound values and pivot plays. Last week there weren't very many good QB plays, this week, there is an abundance. This has become a slate where you must force yourself to take difficult stands on players you like. Due to thanksgiving festivities and the craziness of this slate, I will be dialing back my number of lineups. I will play 1-3 rather than the 6-8 I typically play. This is going to cause my player pool to be extremely tight so keep that in mind moving forward.
Rob and I also discussed not being high on the Colts/Titans players despite the pace up environment. Now, with multiple Colts defenders out, I like the Titans' offense a lot more. My top secondary piece was Corey Davis, but Henry and even Brown are very playable now. Henry is easily a top play with multiple Colts defensive lineman out of the game. I just wanted to hit on that because my stance on the players, relative to their salaries, in that game has changed. One other point I want to make is targeting friendly game environments. We have several fun games to target so I am going to list those out. That way, you can refer to some of those players if you disagree with my player pool.
These are the top 5 games to target for pace. NE/ARI is second, but it's a game of extremes. If you think New England can win and slow down Kyler, then I would largely avoid this game outside of Jakobi Meyers and maybe Cam. If you think Arizona can speed them up significantly then things get a little more fun. While some of these games are obvious pace up spots, I think it's important to focus on the top environments when targeting passing games along with factoring in potential outcomes. While I won't target all of these games, this is where I started my process this week. With the macro view in mind, let's run over my smallest player pool to date.
QB - I like about 8 Quarterbacks this week, but I have narrowed it down to these two as of Saturday night. I talked on the podcast why I like these two guys. They are at home, in a paced up game, and desperate for a win. I think we see Cam run the ball more here than last week as well. As for Brady, well, angry Brady is the best Brady for fantasy purposes. I typically prefer the Allen's and Murray's of the world, but I think I am ok taking a slightly lower ceiling if it allows me to pay up elsewhere. If you need to go cheaper, then Carr and Fitzpatrick are in great spots and are part of those 8 QBs I like this week.
RB - Cook is a stud in a plus matchup. With no Thielen, I am curious to see how the panthers handle him. 9.5k is tough to swallow, but he is easily affordable this week with value across the board. As I said earlier in the article, Henry is now in consideration for my main lineup. The game environment is good and the Colts are depleted. They have been one of the top run defenses all year, but these inactive will put that to the test with King Henry coming to town. I think you can play Chubb and Hunt together or separately. I still don't understand Hunt's price with this matchup, but the Browns should be able to run all over the Jags. We will never get a ceiling game from either of these players so that is always going to make you feel like something was left on the table, but they should meet value just fine. As for Hines, Taylor was ruled out and I like Hines over Wilkins. I think he is the most explosive and presents the highest upside in a plus matchup with pace up environment.
WR - Hill has gone OFF in three straight games and has the potential to do it again in Tampa Bay. The Chiefs love to come out aggressive when on the road and that typically includes some deep shots to the cheetah. This game will generate plenty of fantasy production so while the points might not come from Hill or Kelce, they will come from somewhere. That's where Sammy Watkins comes in. He's leverage in a game where there will be points scored. He hasn't played in weeks but appears healthy so double check his status tomorrow. Moore and Anderson have incredible target and Air yards shares. It's unlikely I play both, but i will try to squeeze one of these guys in to correlate with whomever I play from Minnesota. Speaking of them, we have Jefferson at 6.3k. Rob mentioned on the podcast that he might like Jefferson more if Thielen plays because the attention will be directed towards Thielen. Now, it appears Jefferson is the guy, and I expect significant ownership on him. In tournaments, I like Rob's thought process because it's very possible they key on Jefferson and he doesn't blow up like we expect. However, the probability that he is below 15 PPR points feels extremely low to me.
Dropping below the 6k range we have Parker. The Jets are a fantastic matchup for the same reason we loved Herbert last week. So naturally, Parker/Fitzpatrick are a perfectly fine stack to begin your lineups. Antonio Brown's volume is increasing, and the big play is coming. There were late week whispers out of Tampa Bay regarding offensive adjustments. Some speculate more involvement for scotty miller, less 2 TE sets, more 2 TE sets, etc. The point is, we don't know how TB will adjust this week and what they might throw at Kansas City. I think Tom Brady is determined to get Antonio Brown involved so i expect a nice day from him. Another leverate play in this game is Ronald Jones, but ROJO isn't for the faint of heart. I haven't decided to go full psycho just yet so I'll stick to AB for now. I faded Meyers last week and I like going back to him this week after he burned everyone. He is stackable with Cam. Pittman continues to prove me wrong so I am all aboard the Pittman train this week. The environment is good, and we have reason to believe he will continue to see his target share rise.
I like Davis as leverage off the primary Titans pieces. He continues to be involved, and never receives too much attention from the masses. Similar to the Watkins play, the points have to come from somewhere. Just because they are implied to do well, doesn't mean it will be all Henry/Brown. Agholor is apparently a stud now. This week he gets the Falcons awful pass defense in the dome. Wouldn't it be so Agholor of him to just lay an egg though? Maybe that's the local Philly fans talking, I can't tell anymore. As I mentioned before, there is a ton of value this week and I am only giving you a fraction of what's out there. Andy Isabella is part of that fraction. He is hyper explosive and riskly. With no Fitzgerald, it looks like Isabella will receive the bulk of the work in 3 wide sets. Sure, he will rotate, but the snap share should be there. Kirk might be the biggest beneficiary so you can look to him as well, but Isabella's upside at 3k is difficult to pass up.
TE/DEF - With no Irv Smith or Thielen this week, Rudolph should see a few extra targets with his dirt cheap price of 2.8k. If you want to pay up for Kelce or Waller, then do it. They should smash and are basically WR's anyways. If you want cap space, then Rudolph provides that. As for Defense, seek pressure rate, blitz rate, and pressure rate allowed. I like several cheap defenses, but the Saints are going to be hard to pass up considering the state of their QB room. I say it every week, but I will say it again, high variance positions create high variance outcomes. You only need one fluky play for your defense to pay off.
This week isn't about finding the perfect WR/CB matchup or some obscure statistic. It's about operating through the noise and finding one or two leverage plays in these high totaled games. You have to be able to siphon out the noise, otherwise, you will be scrambling at 12:55 with zero clarity. You want to take a stand on players, and live with the decisions. That's what we have to do this week more than any other, take a stand and live with it. There is great reward in being really right when everyone else is wrong.
I am playing 1-3 lineups, my player pool reflects that and may adjust with more news
Target these high total games and consider the secondary pieces in them to create leverage
Correlate throughout your lineup (1v1, 2v1, etc.)
There is great reward in being really right when everyone else is wrong.