Daily Fantasy Football Week 1: Passing Game (QB/WR/TE) Picks

This is a continuation of the RB picks article I released yesterday. You can find that article here:

This article isn’t going to contain every single WR I like, but it will show you how I use our Sportsbook Projection Tool to make picks using the top teams on the list. This is how I make most of my Daily Fantasy Football picks, but sometimes there are other factors that override sportsbook projections.

Below are the top Pass Point Share teams and my analysis:


The New England Patriots (18.37 Pass Share) – I’m actually quite surprised seeing the Pats here given that Tom Brady has been in court more than he’s been practicing it lately, but Sports Bettors seem pretty unfazed by this and the line for the o/u has actually been moving up. Brandon LaFell is actually out until October, and Reggie Wayne was surprisingly cut, so the Patriots #2 WR will be Danny Amendola and their #3 will likely be Aaron Dobson. Not only that, LeGarette Blount is suspended for the opening game. It’s amazing that with so many key members missing from their offense, the line is so optimistic here. I’m curious whether we’ll see some line movement toward the Steelers and the under as it gets closer to kick-off.

That being said, even if the line does move down, the Patriots passing game should be in great shape here and with all the injuries we likely will be able to count on guys like Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski for some seriously steady production Thursday. Edelman is especially well priced on DraftKings, he’s only $6,600 and if he doesn’t have at least 8 catches in this game I would be shocked. Gronkowski is priced pretty high on both FanDuel and DraftKings, but he’s clearly worth it this week. As for Amendola? I think he’s a solid punt play, but I worry about his upside. I like him for cash games.

Given that there are only really three receiver options, and no one to really run the ball, you have to like all these guys quite a bit.

And then there’s Tom Brady. It’s sort of weird to say this, but I like the position players for the Pats a lot more than their QB. Brady has such little talent to throw to here, and I just don’t see how this offseason doesn’t effect his play here. He’s obviously a Thursday GPP play, but for cash I’ll likely go with someone else.


The Denver Broncos (17.08 Pass Share) – While the Broncos are quite high on the pass point share this week, I think this is likely a lower than normal number we’ll see from them this season. The Broncos are priced for production like this, so I’m not loving the idea of playing Manning, D. Thomas, or E. Sanders. But one guy I do really like (and I’m not the only one) is Owen Daniels, who is a talented receiving TE and is going to benefit ridiculously from having Peyton Manning throwing to him. I like Martellus Bennett as my #1 TE week 1, but Daniels is a close 2nd, and is priced pretty fairly on both Fanduel and DraftKings.


The Green Bay Packers (16.65 Pass Share) – I want to take this time to make a point about WR injuries. The effect of the injury, and who benefits, all depends on the QB. If you have a bad or mediocre QB (think Ryan Fitzpatrick), when one of his key receivers goes down, we expect that QB to target one of his main WRs a lot more. But when you have a good QB like Rodgers, he’ll likely continue to spread the ball around and use his talent to make the less talented WRs better. So when I look at the Jordy Nelson injury, my thought is this is a lot better for Davante Adams and (newly signed) James Jones then it is for Randall Cobb. Both players are very cheap (in the mid-to-low $4,000s on DraftKings) and will be productive no matter what happens in this game. A sneaky pick here as well is Richard Rodgers, who seems to have taken over the #1 TE spot and is a very talented as a receiver. Adams is definitely the safest play of the bunch, and is one of my favorite guys for cash games.


The Philadelphia Eagles (16.53 Pass Share) – When I was initially prepping for this article, I didn’t feel like the WR situation was clear enough to be high on anyone here aside from Sam Bradford. But, as I researched more, it has become a lot more clear that a) Jordan Matthews is clearly the #1 WR in this offense and b) the Nelson Agholor hype seems to be real. Riley Cooper seems to be more of a blocker than anything else and Josh Huff isn’t close to being NFL ready yet, and just isn’t going to get a ton of time as the 4th WR. With two relatively cheap WRs likely getting most of the attention in the passing game here, I actually like Agholor and Matthews quite a bit. There prices don’t seem to fully reflect their big roles in this offense, especially for Matthews on FanDuel who is only $6,800 and likely will end the season near $8,000. That being said, when it comes to a Chip Kelly offense, neither of these guys are the safest plays as Kelly will use a lot of different guys and spread the ball around a lot.

A player I do feel safe playing, however, is Sam Bradford. The Eagles have made some really bad QBs look good (i.e. Nick Foles and Mark Sanchez), what will happen when their offense is run by an actual NFL worthy QB? Bradford may not be great, but he will look great in this offense, and that talent at RB may help him get some chunk yards from short dump-offs. He looked really good in the Eagles 3rd preseason game, going 10/10 and throwing 3 TDs. Preseason doesn’t mean everything, but it means something.


The Atlanta Falcons (16.09 Pass Share) – What I like about the Falcons here is the predictability of their offense. Matt Ryan will be passing a lot, he will be throwing it well, and he will be throwing to Julio Jones and Roddy White. The Eagles were torched last year by #1 receivers, and they haven’t done much for us to expect that to change. I like Ryan, Jones, and White a lot in both cash games and GPPs.

You may be considering Jacob Tamme some here, but I don’t know how he does without Peyton Manning throwing him timing routes. I don’t love him, and it looks like with a hurt back he may not even play week 1.


The San Diego Chargers (16.00 Pass Share) – This was one of the most surprising ones of the bunch but the Chargers are a pass first offense and the Lions defense likely won’t be much of a force having lost their two best players in Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley. On top of this, Antonio Gates is suspended 4 games, which gives Rivers even less options and should make WR performance more predictable. The problem is none of the WR options aren’t too appealing at face value. Keenan Allen is a solid #1, but Stevie Johnson and Malcolm “I will never catch more than 5 passes in a game” Floyd are likely not going to have any GPP worthy games (although I’d bet on Johnson for GPPs over Floyd). I think Danny Woodhead contributes in the passing game here as well. I think the best play out of the bunch is Allen, but I hate his price on either site. But I think his high price means he’ll be overlooked, which makes him a great GPP play. I love pairing Allen and Rivers in the Sunday Million or Millionaire Maker because if Rivers has an exceptional game, 90% of the time it will be because Allen does as well.

As for TEs, Antonio Gates is out, which makes Ladarius Green the starter. Green did not have a great season last year, but he also didn’t play a lot of snaps. His snap count will increase dramatically with Gates suspended and his production will as well. He’s not a completely safe play, but he does have a lot of upside here, and is only $3,500 on DraftKings. I actually like Green quite a bit.


Other Notable WRs/TEs:

Larry Fitzgerald  – With Michael Floyd likely out in the Cardinals 1st game, there just aren’t really other viable WRs of this team aside from John Brown who is not going to be a high reception player. Fitzgerald is very reasonable priced on both DraftKings and FanDuel, and the Cardinals have no choice but to target him in this game. I also think Floyd’s absence gives a boost to Andre Ellington here, especially on DraftKings where he has a solid price and will benefit from PPR.

Odell Beckham Jr. – The Cowboys are going to have a tough time stopping him and even if they do a fine job he should get a ton of targets late in the game is the Giants trail. And if the Giants to get up in this game early, it will likely be because of Beckham anyway. It would be hard to imagine him having a bad game.

Jarvis Landry – His short average depth of route usually keeps him from having any great games, but this is the perfect match-up for him. Washington’s secondary is leaky especially at nickel corner and what should have been a 5 yard catch could turn into a 40 yard TD. I’m not sure I get the ridiculous love for him given they have Greg Jennings and Kenny Stills as well, and Miami will likely be running the ball quite a bit, but he’s clearly a solid play. If I find he’ll be overplayed though, I could definitely see an argument for fading him completely.

Dez Bryant – Obviously I’m high on the Cowboys running game, but I think Bryant definitely gets a little more involved this year with DeMarco Murray gone. He’s capable of some Millionaire Maker winning games.

Martellus Bennett – Whether Alshon Jeffery plays or not, with Brandon Marshall gone Bennett is going to be targeted in the passing game a lot and the Bears should be throwing a lot in a game where they’ll likely get down to the Packers early. Bennett is an under-rated talent at TE, and I think he’s the best dollar-for-dollar play at the position in week 1. His $4,300 price on DraftKings is absurd.



View all posts by Max J Steinberg
Max J Steinberg

About the Author

Max J Steinberg Max Steinberg is a professional poker player and a top Daily Fantasy player who uses his creativity and mathematical abilities he cultivated as a poker player to win money on both DraftKings and FanDuel. He already has several big tournament scores to his name including the Victiv Bowl and countless MLB Monster wins. Follow him on twitter @maxjsteinberg.

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