Nelson Spruce XFL

We are now entering Week 3 of the XFL, and are starting to get a clearer picture of what each team is going to look like this season. With just a 10-week season, we need to take some small samples and use them to project future performance. Pricing on DraftKings has also gotten more aggressive with the top-end players, but don’t worry, there is still plenty of value out there!


Set your lineups here: XFL $300K Saturday Special [$100K to 1st]


Target worth paying up for: P.J. Walker ($11,500) at TB

The Roughnecks have been outstanding on offense to open the year, with Walker looking like the early MVP favorite. His price has risen dramatically, but there shouldn’t be too much of an issue getting to him with some of the other value on the slate. No XFL team passes a higher percentage of the time than the Roughnecks, who have also thrown for 78% of their XFL-leading nine offensive touchdowns. From a floor perspective, Walker is just as good as any other QB available and has the highest weekly ceiling each week playing in June Jones’ run-and-shoot attack.

Best value: Marquise Williams ($6,400) at STL

The Guardians have not said anything yet about the status of Matt McGloin ($8,500), but after ripping the coaching staff incessantly during Saturday’s loss to the Defenders, it wouldn’t surprise me if he got benched for Week 3. If that happens, Williams becomes a remarkable value at this cost. While the range of scoring is wider than in the NFL, XFL QBs still possess a fantastic floor, and Williams’ would also be buoyed by his rushing ability. Removing sack yardage, he ran for over 1,000 yards in his final year at UNC, with 13 rushing touchdowns. I like his range of outcomes better than McGloin’s in a vacuum, and especially at a $2,100 discount.

Positional Strategy

If we don’t get Williams as a starter, there is no real reason to pay less than 10k at QB. The value is plentiful on the slate, and the top-end QBs have distanced themselves handily from the field in terms of production. You simply cannot leave that many raw points on the table unless you are getting a ridiculous value like Williams. Even with Williams available, it is going to be a close decision to play him or the top-end signal-callers.

Running Back

Target worth paying up for: Cameron Artis-Payne ($8,300) at SEA

Simply put, nobody is seeing the kind of volume that Artis-Payne appears to have established in the Renegade offense. After using a four-back rotation in Week 1, only Artis-Payne and Lance Dunbar ($6,600) saw significant action for Dallas in Week 2. Artis-Payne has seen at least four targets in both games, and dominated the rushing load in Week 2, seeing 67% of the carries. The Renegades are five-point favorites against Seattle and should be able to run the ball to close the game out, much as they did against the Wildcats last week. Artis-Payne doesn’t need to pay off this price from a multiplier perspective to lead the position comfortably in DKFP.

Best value: Jacques Patrick ($4,400) vs. HOU

After being out-snapped significantly by De’Veon Smith ($6,300) in Week 1, Patrick leveled the backfield split to even in Week 2. He played the same number of snaps as Smith, and he out-carried him 14 to 12. He also saw two targets. If the split continues, Patrick becomes a quality value relative to his opportunity. And if Aaron Murray ($7,900) returns from injury, the Vipers will have some more touchdown equity to go around.

Positional Strategy

Last week, everyone was looking to punt RB hard, but this week’s pricing makes it rather difficult to do that. There simply is not a lot of volume out there for fantasy players to take advantage of. That makes the players currently seeing a decent load extremely valuable and, in Week 3, pricey. Given the context of the slate, I think it is best to target one of the Dallas RBs, as the Renegades continue to pepper their RBs with targets early on in the year.

Wide Receiver

Target worth paying up for: Nelson Spruce ($10,900) vs. DC

Spruce is the best WR in the league, and he has displayed that in the first two weeks of the season in different ways. In Week 1, he gobbled up a bunch of low-aDOT targets while playing with a backup QB. In Week 2, with Josh Johnson ($9,200) back in the fold, Spruce saw some deeper targets, converting a long one for a touchdown and just missing another on a Johnson over-throw. He is leading the XFL in target share at 33%. Spruce is a plug and play every week until he is priced out of convenience. That has not happened just yet.

Best value: Nick Holley ($4,400) at TB

DraftKings moved Holley from RB to WR this week, much to the chagrin of fantasy gamers, but he is still priced at a point to take advantage of for Week 3. Through two weeks, Holley is second only to Cam Phillips ($11,100) in routes run for the Roughnecks, despite being fourth in target share. Sammie Coates ($7,700) saw a sharp decrease in playing time, and this could open up more opportunities for Holley going forward. He has a diverse skill-set and is always a threat to be used on the ground, or as a passer.

Positional Strategy

WR is the best value position of the week, with multiple options worth considering to save you salary. If Williams becomes available, then you can play two studs here with the savings, but otherwise, it is best to just play one of the top-end options to go with multiple values. There have been some aggressive changes in price, but DraftKings has not created efficient pricing for every team. Take advantage.


Target worth paying up for: Cam Phillips ($11,100) at TB

The aforementioned Phillips is the other top option worth paying up for at WR, and that makes him a flex play worth considering if you have the money. Phillips is coming off of a three-touchdown performance, which is sure to keep his ownership up, and he leads the Roughnecks in target share at 27%. He clearly has a rapport with Walker. I prefer Spruce to Phillips due to team play volume and raw targets, but Phillips has already displayed just how much upside he has in any given week.

Best value: Donald Parham ($5,300) at SEA

Parham left the game Sunday early with an injury, but he has been a limited participant in practice this week, indicating that he has a decent chance of suiting up against Seattle. Parham has been the top target in the offense through two weeks, seeing 20% of target volume, and was a frequent target of Landry Jones’ ($10,600) on Sunday. Parham saw 11 targets (27.5%), and he was targeted inside of the 10-yard line for a touchdown. He is a physical freak, standing at 6’8″ and 240 pounds. Parham ran a 4.68 40-yard dash at his Stetson Pro Day. He lines up frequently out wide, though he is a nominal tight end.

Positional Strategy

It is my belief that one of the biggest edges in XFL DFS so far is playing four-WR lineups. While RB scoring was up last weekend, it still pales in comparison to the upside shown by WRs. Especially with the RBs priced up a good bit, it does not make much sense to flex them in any format. This is a great area to get ahead of the field in MME.


Target worth paying up for: Roughnecks ($5,200) at TB

The Vipers have very simply been a tremendous source of scoring for opposing DSTs early in the year. They have yet to score an offensive touchdown and have taken a sack on a league-leading 11% of dropbacks. The Roughnecks are 6.5 point favorites in this matchup and should close as more than a touchdown favorite against Tampa Bay. They will need a defensive score to pay off this price but should have an extremely high floor.

Best value: Battlehawks ($3,700) vs. NY

The Battlehawks are 10-point home favorites against New York, so it is a bit of a surprise to see St. Louis as the fifth-highest priced DST or Week 3. Whether it is McGloin or Williams at QB for the Guardians, New York should be dropping back to pass a good bit. That will lend itself to sack and turnover opportunities.

Positional Strategy

The range at DST has expanded a bit here in Week 3, so you will want to be more mindful of your spending in cash formats. In tournaments, feel free to play a range of DSTs across the pricing spectrum.

Key news to monitor on DK Live:

Aaron Murray (foot; $7,900) – OUT

Matt Jones (knee; $7,500)
Kenneth Farrow (rib; $6,000) – PROBABLE
Elijah Hood (ankle; $5,600)
Darius Victor (head; $4,700)
Keith Ford (knee; $4,000)
De’Angelo Henderson (shoulder; $3,600) – OUT
DuJuan Harris (ankle; $3,400)

Cam Phillips (ankle; $11,100) – PROBABLE
L’Damian Washington (ankle; $8,000)
Kasen Williams (quad; $5,000) – OUT
Malachi Dupre (shoulder; $3,900)
Joe Horn (shoulder; $3,800)
Dontez Byrd (knee; $3,000) – PROBABLE

Nick Truesdell (knee; $6,200)
Donald Parham (foot; $5,300) – PROBABLE

Get all the news and analysis up to the minute on DK Live.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is amicsta) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.

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