Lamar Jackson

Arguably, this is the best game of the regular season. The 49ers are traveling to Baltimore in a potential Super Bowl preview. This game sets up a really intriguing matchup between Lamar Jackson ($12,600) and the 49ers’ defense. By far, Jackson has been the best fantasy quarterback in the league, but he faces a stiff test against the Niners. San Francisco is ranked second in the league in defensive DVOA, although it remains to be seen if any team has the ability to slow down Jackson.

Note: All salaries will be Flex prices unless noted as Captain’s Pick prices.


FIVE BETTING TRENDS

— The Ravens have won each of their last seven games.

— The underdogs have covered the spread in seven of the Ravens’ last eight home games at M&T Bank Stadium.

— The 49ers have won the first quarter in each of their last four games as underdogs against AFC opponents.

— George Kittle has scored a touchdown in three of the 49ers’ last four games as underdogs against AFC opponents.

— Lamar Jackson has scored at least one touchdown in four of the Ravens’ last five Sunday games.

Stats provided by DraftKings Sportsbook


SHOWDOWN STRATEGY

49ers

Finally, it looks like the 49ers have all their weapons relatively healthy in the passing game. George Kittle ($9,600), Emmanuel Sanders ($7,800) and Deebo Samuel ($7,600) are all expected to play this weekend. Even though all three were active last week, they missed practices, leading me to believe they were less than 100%. This week, all have gotten in some practice reps as limited participants. Of the three, I think Samuel makes for the best play at his price. He’s emerged as a top option in the offense over the last handful of games. Samuel has 33 targets in the last three games and went over 110 receiving yards in two of those games.

Having a full complement of receivers is good news for Jimmy Garoppolo ($9,000). I don’t love paying up for him since I like the other QB in this game more, even though Jimmy G has shown upside in recent weeks. He scored over 30 DKFP in two of the last four games, but the Ravens present a difficult matchup. Against the pass, they rank third in the league per DVOA.

The best way to attack the Ravens’ defense in on the ground. Their pass defense is strong and Baltimore ranks 24th in run defense DVOA. In the backfield, there is an injury situation we need to keep our eyes on. Matt Breida ($6,600) has missed the last couple of games with an ankle injury is questionable to play this week. If he’s out, we can expect a decent workload from Tevin Coleman ($7,400). He has double-digit touches in eight straight games and has involvement in the passing game.

It’s a bit ominous that the 49ers have a team total of just 20 points. Without any obvious values on the San Francisco offense, it makes sense to Robbie Gould ($3,800) to save salary. I don’t usually love rostering kickers because the upside is limited, but I want to do everything possible to roster Lamar Jackson.


Ravens

I like Lamar Jackson ($12,600) a ton. Enough that I want to play him in the Captain’s spot ($18,900). Jackson has been an unstoppable force in DFS and is somebody I want to roster every time the Ravens play. His rushing ability gives him an unparalleled combination of ceiling and floor. Jackson has at least 26 DKFP in nine of 11 games this season, and he’s gone over 32 DKFP in three consecutive games. There could be some concern about the matchup. As mentioned the 49ers have the second-rated defense in the league by DVOA. The No. 1 defense belongs to the Patriots, and Jackson has already torched them for 28.6 DKFP. This makes the vaunted 49ers’ defense a less of a concern.

The Ravens have been on fire lately. Having won five games in a row by at least 14, which has taken great games from not only Jackson but the Ravens’ defense ($5,000), as well. Baltimore’s defense has scored at least 13 DKFP in all five of the recent blowout wins. This creates some upside in a matchup against Garoppolo. Even though he’s played well this season, he has been mistake-prone. Garoppolo has thrown 10 interceptions this season and has turned the ball over five times in the last three games.

As a punt play, we could do worse than Willie Snead ($4,600). He has multiple catches in eight of the last nine games and scored a pair of touchdowns last week. Coming off that 15.4 DKFP game, I have some optimism that Jackson will have the confidence to go back to Snead this week.


THE OUTCOME

I can’t pick against Lamar Jackson. Until we see a team figure out a way to slow him down, there is no formula to keep the Ravens from scoring points. Just holding Jackson to under 20 DKFP seems like an impossible task. At this point, it seems like he’s the clear front runner to win league MVP. Pair his strong play with the recent performances of the defense and the Ravens might be the best team in the NFL.

Final Score: Baltimore 30, San Francisco 20


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is gehrenberg) 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.