I was in a group chat earlier this week and not a single person was giving the Giants a chance against the Patriots in this week's "Thursday Night Football." What does this have to do with my Week 6 daily fantasy football (DFS) picks, you ask. Plenty and I'll get to that.
Back to the Giants-Patriots... Far more often than you would expect, heavily favored teams not only cover, but they also win outright. But haven't we been down this road before? Forget the obvious history between these two teams in the Super Bowl. Just in the last two weeks, double-digit underdogs earned a W. It was the Colts this past week against the Chiefs and the Buccaneers over the Rams the week before. So how does this relate to DFS picks?
The answer is plenty. Remember that nothing is absolute. If you make your DFS picks and then think to yourself, "Nah, there's no way that's going to happen," then perhaps you need to give your picks some more thought. Anything can happen. Do you think the Steelers were planning to have Devlin Hodges see meaningful snaps this year? Do you think the aforementioned Giants had similar plans for Jonathan Hilliman? And those are just injury situations. Do you think anyone had DJ Chark Jr. more than 50 spots ahead of Stefon Diggs at the quarter pole of the season? No way.
I feel like every now and then I need to remind people that nothing is absolute — either positively or negatively. This week feels like one of those weeks. Keep this in mind when making your Week 6 DFS picks!
Teams on bye: Buffalo, Chicago, Indianapolis, Oakland
Week 6 DFS Picks
Safe QB: Deshaun Watson at Chiefs (DK $6700, FD $8400)
This makes it two weeks in a row for Watson in this space. I obviously led you right last week when I suggested him, and his matchup this week is equally as good. He's going against the usual tenant of this space (Patrick Mahomes), and this game unsurprisingly is the highest over/under of the week. I like Mahomes too, but I'd rather take the savings on Watson.
After last week's monster output, FanDuel raised Watson's salary by about $400. I like him on both sites, but he's an even better bargain on DraftKings where interestingly his salary remained unchanged.
I hope I don't need to tell you all the reasons to start Watson this week. And there are some other nice options at quarterback this week. However, Watson will be well represented in any cash game lineup this week.
High Risk/Reward QB: Gardner Minshew vs. Saints (DK $5000, FD $6900)
There are definitely some high-priced pivots this week that I like. Despite my expectations for those players, I think the high-priced pivots will be more heavily owned this week than most, so I'm looking to save a little salary. Minshew was highlighted in my Week 6 QB rankings. Read that to find all the reasons I like him, but the cherry on top is his low price tag in DFS.
Or perhaps it is tweets like this that have me thoroughly enjoying the Minshew era:
Safe RB: Mark Ingram vs. Bengals (DK: $6600, FD: $7500)
Probably the easiest cash game play of the week. Cincinnati has given up more fantasy points per game to running backs than any other team (even more than Miami!). Ingram is a set-it-and-forget-it play this week.
High Risk/Reward RB: Derrick Henry at Broncos (DK: $6100, FD: $6700)
While your 50/50 cash game picks this week are pretty easy, the GPP picks this week come with more questions than a four-year-old allowed to ask at will. Henry had a monster Week 1, but he has yet to hit even 18 fantasy points each of the last four weeks. That's not horrible, but not great either.
Perhaps Denver begins to adjust to life without Bradley Chubb this week. But I doubt it. The Broncos are still okay against the pass too. Denver, however, is just a few spots behind Cincinnati at the bottom of the heap when it comes to fantasy points allowed to RBs. I think Henry will make his owners very happy this week.
Safe WR: Adam Thielen vs. Eagles (DK: $6700, FD: $7200)
Let's go through our checklist. Thielen is coming off a seven-catch, 130-yard, two-TD week. Production? Check. Large target share? Check. Matchup? The Eagles are allowing 42.84 fantasy points to WRs. 'Nuff said!
High Risk/Reward WR: Stefon Diggs vs. Eagles (DK: $5900, FD: $5800)
Which brings us to Adam Thielen's tag-team partner. Diggs has had a disappointing season, to say the least. But with a potential trade looming, I think Diggs sees an uptick in his target share this week, which means an uptick in production as well. Now coming at a discounted price, especially on FanDuel, I will have a ton of GPP shares of Diggs this week.
Safe TE: Travis Kelce vs. Texans (DK: $7000, FD: $7500)
Kelce's price has skyrocketed on DraftKings. However, it just means that his price finally caught up to his likely production. But Kelce is in this space more as a default. George Kittle (at Rams), Zach Ertz (at Viking), and many of the other top tight ends have difficult matchups this week. I am definitely stacking Kelce in any entry that includes Patrick Mahomes. I'm also playing Kelce in nearly every entry that does not include Mahomes as well.
High Risk/Reward TE: Jeremy Sprinkle at Miami (DK: $2600, FD: $4500)
Dawson Knox has been one of my favorite tight end sleepers lately, but he's out this week. I know I'd be out a while after this...
He's actually on bye this week, which is why I am going to go with Sprinkle. Jordan Reed is out for the Redskins due to another concussion and it looks like Vernon Davis will be joining him. You can do far worse than grabbing a tight end playing the Dolphins any given week. And he's super cheap on DraftKings. Keep your expectations low, but he's an ideal GPP pick this week.
Safe DST: Titans at Broncos (DK: $2900, FD: $4700)
The Patriots are the obvious play this week. Yet as discussed earlier, they play Thursday night and are not an option on the main slate. I love stacking my DST and an RB together, so I'm looking at both the Ravens and the Titans. I like 'em both this week, but let's go with the cheaper option of the two. This is especially true on DraftKings where the Titans are far more priced to buy than on FanDuel. As I said elsewhere this week, I don't bet against January Joe. But give me a defense playing Joe Flacco in October nearly every week.
High Risk/Reward DST: Redskins at Dolphins (DK: $3200, FD: $4200)
The Redskins defense is bad. We are talking about a squad giving up the third-most points per game kind of bad. But until the Dolphins can prove to me they are worthy of being called an NFL team, I am going to pick against them.
As I said earlier, my high risk/reward GPP picks are much more difficult this week. But the Skins might be the easiest high risk/reward pick of all my DFS Week 6 picks.
— Written by Mark Strausberg, a member of the Athlon Network Contributor, who despite his youthful exuberance and good looks has been playing fantasy sports before Wildcats or Hoosiers even made it to VHS. Got a fantasy sports question or thought? Hit him up on Twitter @MarkStrausberg.