As you rigorously prepare and research leading into each season and week of DFS, different factors are always going to change the landscape. “Next Man Up” is a series that examines players who are now being propelled into a starting role (thus creating a larger opportunity for that player), whether it be via injury, suspension or simply a change to the depth chart.
The Eagles are one of the least talented groups of wide receivers in the NFL, so the front office knew exactly what they were doing when they took a chance on Dorial Green-Beckham just a couple of weeks before the season began.
DGB had all the potential to be a first-round pick in 2015, but slipped to the Titans in the early second-round — 40th overall. His production was very inconsistent with fellow rookie Marcus Mariota, hooking up 32 times for 549 yards and four touchdowns, but the potential was clearly there (specifically his 17.2 YPC).
It was somewhat shocking when Tennessee gave up so early on the guy they drafted to be Mariota’s top target, shipping him off to Philly for a guard that was previously a fifth-round pick and started just two games for the Eagles the year before. It looks like Philadelphia is starting to see the risk pay off.
DGB has climbed from a third/fourth WR at the start of the season all the way up to a current starter/potential WR1. The release of Josh Huff helped him earn more snaps beginning in Week 9, and apparently he impressed Philly’s coaches with the extra work.
DBG broke out in Week 11 when he played a season-high 64 snaps (third among PHI WRs behind Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor) against the Seahawks. Green-Beckham hauled in 5-of-8 targets for 54 yards and a TD in a very tough matchup on the road in Seattle.
Just a week later Agholor was listed as inactive — clearly a direct cause of Green-Beckham’s play, and an obvious promotion. DGB looked fantastic early in his first start opposite Matthews, snagging four passes for 53 yards on the opening drive alone, which resulted in an Eagles touchdown.
Although he tailed off a bit late, DGB did finish the game with six catches (on 10 targets) for 82 yards — all of which were team-highs. Green-Beckham also led all Philly WRs in snaps in Week 12, but that can likely be attributed to Matthews (still the WR1 when healthy) leaving with an ankle injury.
Early reports indicate that Matthews will be available for Sunday’s matchup with the Bengals, but there’s an argument to be made that Matthew’s status shouldn’t even effect DGB’s value. Lining up as the WR1 would be nice for Green-Beckham, or any WR for that matter, but after seeing how well he performed alongside Matthews on the Eagles’ opening drive, there’s not much cause for concern.
It’s also worth mentioning that for as long as Agholor is in the dog house, there’s really no threat to Green-Beckham’s starting role. Bryce Treggs and Paul Turner played behind him and combined for one catch for 11 yards (Turner was playing in his first NFL game and wasn’t even targeted).
Now averaging 15.3 DraftKings Fantasy Points over his past two games, yet still costing a bare minimum $3,000 in salary for Week 13, Green-Beckham finds himself in what looks to be a pretty useful role in the Eagles’ offense. Although the Week 13 matchup with the Bengals isn’t ideal and Matthews’ status is still unclear, DGB’s short and long-term value both seem to be real.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) 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.