DraftKings NFL $1.6M Thursday Night Showdown is open for entry now. The contest features an unbeaten New England Patriots team looking to rack up their sixth win of the season. Standing in their way is an injury-riddled New York Giants team coming off their first loss in three weeks.
The first place prize winner of the DraftKings TNF Showdown will be gifted with a hefty $400K payout. Let’s see how to optimize our lineups below.
Rules & Scoring:
- Six total players (one captain, five flex players)
- Captain selection cost 1.5x standard salary
- Captain scores 1.5x fantasy point values
- Can choose from any position (QB, RB, WR, TE, K, DST)
- You can use as many players at the same position as you’d like
- $50,000 salary cap
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- Captain: Tom Brady $17,000
- FLEX: Sony Michel $7,600
- FLEX: Golden Tate $7,000
- FLEX: James White $6,800
- FLEX: Patriots DEF $6,200
- FLEX: Elijhaa Penny $3,200
Why this Lineup?
Tom Brady is the glaringly obvious choice at captain for this game. The New England Patriots signal-caller has averaged 26+ fantasy points in four of his five games this season. The New York Giants allow the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. The G-Men have held just one QB below 20.54 fantasy points in 2019.
With Rex Burkhead still hampered by injury, Sony Michel is bound to see extensive usage. Not bad news for a player who’s already averaged 18 touches over four of the first five games of the season. New York recently surrendered 131 yards on 21 carries to Dalvin Cook one week ago.
New York is without their top two pass catchers in Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram. That leaves Golden Tate as one of, if not the only viable receiving option for Daniel Jones on Thursday night. Tate saw six targets in his Giants debut a week ago, and that number will likely skyrocket in Week 6. Tate may not rack up a plethora of yardage vs. a defense that surrenders the fewest in all of football. However, he will accumulate points based on the abundance of catches he is likely to reel in vs. the Pats.
The Giants have allowed 10 receptions for a grand total of 142 receiving yards to opponents’ running backs over the past two weeks. James White may haul in that many passes on his own on Thursday night. White has averaged seven receptions over his past two games.
It may feel odd plugging in a defense with such a high price tag into your DFS lineup. However, this time it’s definitely worth it. The Patriots Defense has yet to score under 10.0 points in a game this season. They average 19.4 points per game over the first five weeks of play. New York is relying on players such as Darrius Slayton and Jon Hilliman to move the ball against them. When you take all of that into consideration, it’s a wonder why they aren’t priced higher.
Elijhaa Penny is a fullback by trade. Yet, with the injuries to Saquon Barkley and Wayne Gallman, he will see extended time as a runner in the Giants offense. Jon Hilliman should get first crack at running duties on Thursday, but it will likely be a committee throughout the night. Penny is New York’s preferred choice to line up next to Jones in the shotgun, leading possibly to more opportunities in the passing game. His 250 lbs. frame will also likely serve him well if the Giants happen to sniff the red zone.
Final Thoughts & Obvious Omissions
New York made it fairly easy on us by ruling out their three top playmakers and their backup running back for Thursday night. In return, that eliminated four of the top seven priced players in the contest.
The most glaring omission from our lineups is Julian Edelman. However, with his $10,400 price tag, it would have been virtually impossible to put forth a rounded lineup with him and Brady’s $17,000 captain salary both in our lineup.
If you’re looking to add a Patriots receiver, possibly look at opting for Edelman’s running mate at wideout, Josh Gordon. Gordon has disappointed in fantasy this season, but his talent, matched with his $9,000 price tag, along with the Giants secondary woes, all make him the smarter choice of the two receiving options.
Reminder, the game kicks off at 8:20 pm ET on Thursday night. Be sure to set your lineups, and good luck!