5 Best Fantasy Matchups for DFS NFL 2017

It’s hard to evaluate fantasy matchups after only one week of the NFL season. Teams change a lot year to year, so last years data isn’t necessarily predictive of the current season. In this article, I’ll evaluate rosters and defensive statistics to break down the best matchups for Daily Fantasy NFL on FanDuel and DraftKings.

Best Matchups


I believe the Saints have one of the worst fantasy defense in the league. They have had a bottom 5 defense the past 2 years, and their roster has not improved at all. Their offense plays fast, which means more expected plays for their opponents. They got crushed by Sam Bradford and the Vikings pass offense Week 1, but I believe their run defense should be equally bad, if not worse. They have inexperienced and bad players at both the DT and LB positions, which normally is a good signal for giving up FP to RBs. However, the defensive line played quite well Week 1 in run support, so we will see how they do as the season goes on.


The 49ers were the absolute best matchup for opposing RBs last season. But they have a brand new coaching staff and a lot of new personnel. They still seem like they will be bad against the run, and are still one of the best matchups in the league, but they were middle of the road Week 1 against the run. They also will not be as fast paced as they were last season with Kyle Shanahan replacing Chip Kelly. They will be a great fantasy matchup, but not as epic as last season.


The Colts were up there with the 49ers as one of the worst run defenses last year, but they have improved a bit in that department. They signed a competent NT in Johnathan Hankins, and added Jabaal Sheard at DE. I would still expect a bad run defense, but their pass defense has taken a severe step backwards. When Vontae Davis is healthy and playing, he’s one of the better CBs in the league. But the rest of the CBs are the worst in the league. Their LBs are also quite bad. They are currently down both their starters at safety. When Davis is back and healthy, I’d target whoever he’s not shadowing. But until then, the entire pass defense should be incredibly bad. In my mind, this is the best matchup for opposing QBs and pass catchers.


When Myles Garrett returns, he is a once in a generation prospect who could take this defense from bad to mediocre. But until then, this defense is all around bad. Their best player is Danny Shelton, their NT, so they may be okay against a run. But with a rookie QB at the helm, it’s hard to imagine opposing teams taking an aggressive, pass heavy game plan against them. This team is also likely to run the ball a lot of play slowly, so opponents may have less plays than expected. I think this is a good matchup, but not as good as the Colts, 49ers, and Saints.


This defense played very well Week 1, but they got one of the easiest matchups against the Jets. Personnel wise, their DTs Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus are elite run stoppers, but they lost their top two CBs from last year Ronald Darby and Stephon Gilmore. With a poor pass rush plus bad and inexperience CBs, I would expect this defense to be very bad against the pass, and their stoutness against the run should make them even more vulnerable to the pass game.

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Daniel Steinberg

About the Author

Daniel Steinberg Daniel Steinberg is a former bond trader at a multi-billion dollar proprietary trading firm in Chicago. He uses his knowledge of statistics and his creativity from his career as a poker professional to create the most advanced Daily Fantasy statistical analysis that you will find anywhere. Follow him on twitter @DanielSingerS

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