Week 16 FanDuel Picks: NFL DFS lineup advice, strategy for daily fantasy football GPP tournaments
Will Grier might not be an NFL DFS play for the faint of heart, but if you missed out on your fantasy championship in Week 16, he might be just the risk you want to take in FanDuel GPP tournaments. He starts off our core picks this week, which you’ll see put into an example lineup below.
If you’re new to this article, we pick four players every week we’ll be overweight in our lineup builds. Then, we give an example of how we’d fill in around them in tournaments. Our “Core Four” this week is Will Grier, Austin Ekeler, Joe Mixon and Darius Slayton. This isn’t an “optimal lineup”; rather, it’s an example of one you could build if you start with our “Core Four”. If you’re looking for more great NFL, NBA, or MLB, or PGA DFS advice, check me out on Twitter (@DFSBenj).
FanDuel Picks Week 16: NFL DFS example lineup for GPPs
CORE PLAY QB: Will Grier, Panthers @ Colts ($6,000)
The Panthers have decided to bench struggling Kyle Allen and see what they’ve got in Will Grier for the final two games of the season. While Grier is a virtual unknown, I’m willing to take a chance on him on FanDuel at his $6,000 price tag in a good matchup against the Colts. Grier has a strong arm and showed some rushing upside during his college days at West Virginia. The Week 16 slate is pretty ugly for quarterbacks unless you want to spend up to Lamar Jackson or Drew Brees, but I’m going to opt to spend down and punt on Grier in cash games to help jam three high-volume running backs into the lineup.
CORE PLAY RB: Austin Ekeler, Chargers vs. Raiders ($6,800)
Christian McCaffrey is going to make my cash game lineup, but there is enough merit in fading him in tournaments this week for him to not quite make the core plays cut. Instead, I’m opting for a much cheaper running back in Ekeler, who has the highest point-per-dollar upside among any running back on the slate. The Chargers’ season is dead in the water, but I expect them to put up a decent fight this week in a home game against a division rival. Ekeler hasn’t seen elite volume since Melvin Gordon has come back from his holdout, but he has been one of the most efficient players in the league with his limited touches. The running back options below $7,000 on FanDuel are thin, but Ekeler makes for a nice mid-range value and can hit 3x his salary expectations at his price point.
CORE PLAY RB: Joe Mixon, Bengals @ Dolphins ($7,800)
I haven’t played Mixon a single time this season, but it’s going to be impossible to overlook him this week given the volume he has seen over the last four weeks and the matchup against the Miami Dolphins, who rank 32nd in defensive DVOA. Mixon has 23 or more touches in each of the last three games and has had 150 or more yards from scrimmage in each of the last two. I don’t love the price on FanDuel at $7,800 – it’s much better on DraftKings at $6,600 – however, I don’t have much interest in spending up on any of the other high-end running backs outside of Christian McCaffrey. The combination of volume and matchup make Mixon a top-end cash game play, and someone you’ll want some exposure to in tournaments despite likely high ownership.
CORE PLAY WR: Darius Slayton, Giants @ Redskins ($6,000)
Anyone who rostered Darius Slayton last week (I was one of them) got extremely lucky after being bailed out with a touchdown after he saw only three targets on the day. While I’m slightly worried about going back to him after seeing that low volume, I think last week’s game is an outlier and not the norm after New York opted to lean on Saquon Barkley. Slayton is an excellent price on FanDuel at $6,000, and the matchup is good against the Redskins, who are an average at best team against the pass. Slayton should be priced in the $6,500 range with players such as Mike Williams, Terry McLaurin, and Michael Gallup, so I will gladly take the value and point-per-dollar upside with Slayton in all formats.
WR: D.J. Moore, Panthers @ Colts ($6,600)
I’m going to stack Moore with QB Will Grier in tournaments. While Grier is a huge unknown, you have to think that he is smart enough to lean on the Panthers’ top wideout in Moore, who is underpriced on FanDuel at $6,600. We saw the Colts defense get torched in back-to-back weeks by two other NFC South teams in the Bucs and Saints, and the Panthers will look to make it three in a row.
WR: Michael Thomas, Saints @ Titans ($9,000)
You don’t need me to tell you that Thomas is the top option at wide receiver this week, despite his high $9,000 price tag. Thomas has been a model of consistency this season, with 21 or more FanDuel points in six of his last seven games.
TE: Zach Ertz, Eagles vs. Cowboys ($6,900)
Ertz is a very reasonable price for someone that is the clear cut top passing catching option on his team. Ertz has seen 10 or more targets in five of the last six games and has a matchup with the Cowboys, who struggle defending opposing tight ends. Ertz should be priced above $7,000 on FanDuel given his role in the offense with the Eagles receiving core down to Greg Ward Jr. and JJ Arcega-Whiteside.
FLEX: Alvin Kamara, Saints @ Titans ($7,200)
Kamara has been a disappointment this season, and he has been held out of the endzone since Week 3. The volume for Kamara is still where we want to see it, both on the ground and through the air, and I’m willing to continue to buy-low on Kamara at his $7,200 price tag at likely low ownership in tournaments.
D/ST: New York Jets vs. Steelers ($3,600)
The D/ST is going to the New York Jets, who are very cheap at $3,600 and have a nice matchup at home against the Steelers. It doesn’t matter who between Devlin Hodges or Mason Rudolph starts at quarterback for Pittsburgh; both of them are turnover prone and not NFL-caliber starters.