Everyone knows football is a game of inches and that is especially true in the NFL. Every Sunday those inches are determined by matchups, specific assignments that scream to every fan where the scales are tipping. The only place to discover those matchups is right here and the best place to watch those matchups is Sling TV.
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Let’s find out where the best advantages are for this Sunday…
Ryan’s been one of the most pleasant surprises of the season, leading the NFL in passing by nearly 300 yards (with 2,075) and boasting a 15:3 TD:INT ratio. He proved his hot start wasn’t a fluke by holding his own against the likes of Denver and Seattle (both on the road) over the past two weeks. Hosting San Diego’s 25th ranked pass defense, allowing nearly 26 points per game, shouldn’t be much of a task for Matty Ice at the Georgia Dome on Sunday.
In his first two games back, Brady has completed 57-of-75 passes for 782 yards and six touchdowns without turning the ball over. That’s an average of 391 yards and three touchdowns per game with a 76% completion rate. On the flip side, Pittsburgh ranks second to last in the entire NFL allowing nearly 300 yards per game through the air. Keep in mind Big Ben is out and won’t be able to help keep the Steelers’ offense on the field, giving TB12 plenty of opportunities to carve the Steel Curtain.
vs. Colts Secondary
Despite ranking around the middle of the pack as a passer this season, Super Mariota has caught fire the past two weeks — tossing six total touchdowns while rushing for 124 yards and another touchdown. All of this comes after back-to-back weeks of failing to reach the end zone. Mariota now gets to carry his momentum into a matchup against an Indy secondary that’s been one of the worst in the NFL against the pass (ranking 30th overall). There’s a lot to like about the matchup here.
vs. Patriots Linebackers
He may be the most expensive RB every week, but that doesn’t mean you can’t roll him out there in your lineup. Bell will be at home against a slightly overrated Patriots’ D, and without his QB. Don’t let that scare you away. If Landry Jones looks to anyone in the passing game, expect some short check downs to Bell, who will also be fed the ball endlessly in an attempt to get the ground game going.
vs. Colts Front Seven
While Mariota torches the Colts secondary, Murray isn’t going to be doing them any favors up front. Like Bell, Murray has proven himself to be matchup proof this season. But coming off a mere 12.5 DK points last week, it’s a good time to pounce on a fantastic matchup with the NFL’s 4th leading rusher against the 25th ranked rush defense in the league. Murray hadn’t scored under 21.5 DK points before last week. I’m looking for him to return to his old ways.
Jamaal Charles appears to be playing second fiddle to Ware. If Ware’s indeed the lead dog, he finds himself with a fantastic matchup this week at an affordable $5,800. The Saints have allowed the 26th most rushing yards this season, and are very vulnerable on the road with a game script favoring the home team. Tack on Ware’s pass catching ability and he’s poised for a monster day … assuming he gets the touches.
vs. Entire Chargers Secondary
Literally … the Chargers could put their entire secondary on Julio and I still like him in that matchup. But, however SD actually attempts to cover Jones, it’s probably not going to work. All the reasons I like Ryan so much are exactly why you should love Julio as an obvious option to stack him with. His 656 yards lead the league and he’s got four touchdowns to go along with it. Another 100+ yards and a score seems reasonable to expect.
The Browns just allowed Mariota to have his best game of the season and now turnaround and find a Bengals team coming off a frustrating loss to the Patriots. Cleveland has one of the worst secondaries in the NFL, which currently has them sitting 24th in defending the pass. Andy Dalton should be slinging it around on Sunday. Which means Green — the third-leading WR in the game with 606 yards — should have his way.
It’s been a quiet season for Jeffery, but he’s still in the top-10 in yardage thus far and has an excellent matchup in Green Bay on Thursday night. The Packers have only the 23rd ranked pass defense, and we now know that Sam Shields will be on IR for the next eight weeks. Eddie Royal might not play in this one, and a lot of attention figures to be on Cam Meredith — who has topped 100 yards in consecutive weeks. I think this is Alshon’s game to breakout given the perfect matchup against a banged up Packers squad.
Rob Gronkowski & Martellus Bennett
The Steelers probably can’t cover either of these other worldly tight ends, but if they manage to somehow stop one, they certainly can’t cover the other. Since Brady’s returned, the receivers have been solid, but the tight end duo has been dominant. Look for that trend to continue against a team that struggles defending normal tight ends, let alone a pair of them built like transformers. Gronk and Bennett should both be spiking in the end zone on Sunday, so I like Bennett if you need to save yourself the $2,700 in salary.
Right in-between the Patriots’ tandem sits Graham at $5,800 — who’s been on a tear of his own. Some people will be scared off by the matchup with Arizona’s highly ranked pass defense, but it may actually help Graham’s value. With that elite secondary blanketing the receivers downfield, Graham should find himself in some favorable matchups that Russell Wilson can exploit.
Henry’s been another hot name of late and finds himself in a near perfect matchup in Week 7. I mentioned how much I like the Falcons offense, but they also have just the 27th ranked defense against the pass. Philip Rivers should have a nice day, but if SD falls behind, look for him to target Henry underneath to get the chains moving.
vs. Carson Wentz
The Vikings defense is as legit as it gets. They’re allowing a ridiculous 12.6 points per game to opponents — a league best by three points (2nd place is Philly). Now Minnesota gets a chance to come off a bye week and face a rookie QB who’s fallen back to reality over the last few weeks. The Purple People Eaters should be feasting.
vs. Landry Jones
I mentioned earlier that the Patriots’ defense is slightly overrated. That’s true, but they’re still pretty darn good. And that’s certainly good enough when you have the luxury of facing Landry Jones. New England should be all over the incapable Jones in this one, forcing plenty of disruption and turnovers. The only thing to worry about is Bell ripping off multiple long runs, or potential garbage time touchdowns.
vs. Brock Osweiler
Brock-Star makes his return to Denver on MNF to face the defense that dragged Peyton Manning and him to the top-seed in the AFC and a Super Bowl last season. Now that same defense is licking its chops to face the lowly Houston offense at home. Don’t read too much into the Texans’ comeback at home against a lowly Colts defense I covered above. Things will be much different in Denver and likely much more painful for Brock.
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.