🐾With These QBs, It's Anyone's Game

...if you believe in underdogs.

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Mom! Wake up! A new Darren Waller album is about to drop…

In today’s Fantasy Life Newsletter presented by Underdog Fantasy:

  • Divisional Round QBs

  • DFS Stacks: All-in on the 49ers

  • Snow: IN Tight End: OUT

  • Hidden Gems: They’re gonna sling it

  • It’s 1/20. Take it away, Cooterdoodle…

Over the last few Saturdays, Chris Allen has given you some solid weather advice. But the only thing I can forecast this weekend is that it’s going to be f*cking cold again.

While the NFL won’t be moving this Bills game, Buffalo is once again crowdsourcing snow shovelers.

As for today’s matchups, winter is coming to the Ravens’ turf. And while there won’t be as much powder as we saw last week, BAL fans are already drawing a very clear line in the sa- snow.

But enough about the cold. Let’s talk about some underdogs that have been on absolute heaters!

😤 Divisional Round UnderDAWGS

The Underdog vs. Vet narrative has been brewing. So let’s talk about our four dawgs, shall we? 

🐶 CJ Stroud

The 10-7 Texans are facing up against a stout Ravens defense today. While the Ravens are 9.5-point favorites, CJ Stroud is coming off of an impressive 3TD Wild Card win vs the Browns.

Will the Texans be able to exploit BAL’s “fairly leaky run defense” with Devin Singletary? Will Stroud continue to sling it to Nico Collins (6-96-1) and Dalton Schultz (1-37-1), who scored against a similarly ranked defensive matchup last week?

Or is it C. None of the above? Me? I’ll take the underdawgs.

🐶 Jordan Love

While the 49ers are 9.5-point favorites, stacked with CMC, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle (etc.), I’m not the only one rooting for the Packers this week. 

And it’s no surprise. Jordan Love is that dawg! He’s leading the pack(ers) in many QB metrics.

  • 7th in passing yards (4,159)

  • 2nd passing TDs (32)

  • T-5th passing attempts (579)

Even Aaron Jones’ spectacular 3TD game vs. the Cowboys last week couldn’t stop Love from scoring three TDs of his own. More on Jordan Love’s hidden potential below.

🐶 Baker Mayfield

Ranked 7th in regular season passing TDs (28), Baker has been COOKING recently.

Mayfield’s last five games:

  • 11 TDs

  • 1,447 yards

  • 3 games >300 yards

  • Only 1 game < 280 yards

While the Lions have done a great job of stopping the run game this season, the same cannot be said through the air. Mike Evans is a ”smash play” in this potential shootout

And if you’re into power rankings, Baker is the #1 in this metric, too.

🐶 …Patrick Mahomes?

Okay, I mightttt be stretching the boundaries of an “underdog” here. Mahomes is more than familiar with playoff territory. 

With the 8th-most postseason wins in NFL history, it will be no surprise if Mahomes manages to pull off the W on Sunday. And if the Chiefs do win, my guess is Rashee Rice (79-938-7 on the season) will play a role in their success. 

The Bills may be favored, but the postseason is the Chiefs’ bread & butter.

🛠️ Everything you need for the Divisional Round’s Saturday Slate

For everything else you need for Saturday—including our Inactives page, which will update in the afternoon with all of the relevant status updates—you can get to your destination with a mere click of a button.

See our suite of tools to get you ready for today’s slate below:

Rankings
Inactives
Game Hub
Free Bets
Projections
Start Sit
Utilization Report
UD Picks

🏈 The Best Weekend in Football!

There is still time to get our draft on!!!

If you haven't joined in on the fun over at Underdog Fantasy there is still a ton to play for considering this is the best week of the NFL Season!

Battle Royale Divisional Round, The Mitten Returns Again, The Gauntlet Returns are all here along with the Way Too Early Dance NBA Playoffs and much more are all live and drafting over on Underdog Fantasy!

What's better than drafting teams? How about Underdog Fantasy is making it even better with a $100 FIRST DEPOSIT MATCH. Seriously, sign up TODAY to get a 100% deposit match of up to $100.

Good luck, and start drafting on Underdog Fantasy!

dfs stacks

📝 Facts:

  • The 49ers have an implied team total of 30, giving them the highest team total on the slate (BAL sits at 26.50) and is right in line with their seasonal average of about 29 points per game.

  • Even though Brock Purdy won’t finish the season as the MVP, he will finish with the highest efficiency of any QB, with 9.6 yards per attempt on just 31 dropbacks per game.

  • While the Packers did not allow the most passing yards (3,515) or yards per attempt (6.7) by any means, their defense is banged up, and star corner Jaire Alexander suffered an injury last week, which will lead to more room to operate for Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel.

🤑 Stack info (DraftKings)

salary info

🧮 Salary and projections:

  • Combo 1 (Purdy/Samuel/Aiyuk): Priced at $21,100, this lineup offers a Median score of 49.9, suggesting strong expected performance. Its 30.7% Top Finish potential underscores a high likelihood of ranking at the top, and a 22.3% chance of exceeding 60+% scoring indicates strong potential for high performance.

  • Combo 2 (Purdy/Samuel/Kittle): A slightly cheaper option at $19,400, with a Median score close to Combo 1 at 47.5. The top finish probability at 19.2% is lower yet significant, and the 60+% potential of 13.6% still indicates a good chance for high scoring, making it a valuable alternative.

  • Combo 3 (Purdy/Aiyuk/Kittle): The most economical at $18,600, with a Median score of 46.4. Despite the lower cost, the top finish chance is quite respectable at 16.0%, and the 60+% probability at 11.2% suggests it can still deliver a solid performance.

dfs stacks

🚀 Top Finish and High Scoring Potential

  • Combo 1 (Purdy/Samuel/Aiyuk):

    • High Ceiling: This combo has the highest ceiling, which combined with its top finish and 60+% probabilities, indicates it's expected to perform exceptionally well on its best day.

    • Efficiency: Given the strong median and high top-finish chances, it appears to offer the best balance between cost and potential output.

  • Combo 2 (Purdy/Samuel/Kittle):

    • High Ceiling: Slightly lower than Combo 1, reflecting a marginally lesser extent of peak performance potential.

    • Efficiency: The decrease in top finish and 60+% probabilities compared to the modest reduction in salary suggests slightly less efficiency than Combo 1 but could be offset by Kittle's individual upside.

  • Combo 3 (Purdy/Aiyuk/Kittle):

    • High Ceiling: The lowest ceiling of the three, which correlates with its lower Median score and top finish probability.

    • Efficiency: Even with the smallest salary, the drop in top finish and 60+% chances indicates it may not offer the same level of efficiency as the other combinations, but its affordability could be leveraged in a broader strategic lineup context.

1️⃣ Combo 1: The premium selection that doesn't compromise on performance potential is suitable for those willing to invest more for the highest expected output.

2️⃣ Combo 2: Offers a slightly more budget-friendly option with a strong performance outlook, ideal for those looking for a balanced cost-to-potential ratio.

3️⃣ Combo 3: While being the most budget-conscious, it provides reasonable performance metrics, making it a smart pick for those who are managing their salary cap tightly yet still want a lineup with decent potential.

The 49ers have the top three stack projections on the slate, and each of the three stacks has a 10+% rate of finishing with 60+ fantasy points. It’s hard to go wrong with any of the stacks from an upside perspective, though it’s worth mentioning they are the most expensive overall. It all comes down to the filler pieces and RBs you can utilize in your stacks, but SF makes for the best option overall for your stacks in DFS.

Watercooler

💲 Want to see how the sharp bettors make money? Line movement tells us a lot.

📺 Looking for more Divisional Round action? Watch Dwain break down his same-game parlay.

✍️ Raiders players are excited about this new signing. From interim to full-time HC.

🤑 The crew put together their best bets for today’s action. Check out these FREE picks.

🎧 TE Darren Waller is about to add a different stat to his resume. BARS.

📖 Sports Illustrated’s closure has us reminiscing about our favorite covers. An end of an era.

🔥 Things are heating up in the NFC South. Well, for the Falcons at least.

🤕 Mark Andrews not expected to suit up. Could a BAL win entice him?

❌ Another day. Another injury report. These Bills won’t suit up Sunday.

🚌 We’re betting on the Gus Bus to drive into the end zone again today. More TD-scoring bets are here!

hidden gems banner

Everyone knows the best plays. But what about the sleepers no one else is on? Pete is back to go treasure hunting for Hidden Gems that you can draft in Battle Royale contests on Underdog Fantasy and in DFS contests.

We’ve made it to the last great slate of the year. 

Sure, we still have the Conference Championship and Super Bowl, but this is our last slate with 8 teams available.

When the slates get smaller than four games, it gets very tricky to differentiate ourselves from the field. Everything shrinks--the top plays, the stack options, and the hidden gems, especially.

But this weekend presents us with a ton of fun ways to attack in drafts.

And Underdog Fantasy has provided us with some awesome contests as well, including a flagship Battle Royale contest with a $200,000 total prize pool and a $20,000 top prize. 

Here is an angle that I’m looking to exploit in drafts this week…

🎯 The QB Targets

We’ve spent the entire season discussing the value of scrolling down for plays who aren’t getting drafted in every contest. 

And with only 8 starting QBs in the Divisional Round and 6 QBs taken in each draft, it means only two of them are going undrafted in the majority of drafts.

Meet your fighters:

battle royale QBs

Honestly, this is about as good as you could hope for. We don’t have to deal with any low upside signal callers like Mason Rudolph and instead get two Hidden Gems with legitimate upside.

In Baker Mayfield and Jordan Love, we are getting two QB options who have no problem slinging it and are likely to be trailing for the majority of the game.

Love, specifically, has been a revelation in recent weeks. Here’s what Dwain said about him in his Utilization Report:

Love has delivered a salivating 9.3 YPA with a 76% completion rate over his last four games, unlocking 266 yards and 2.5 TDs per outing. Love now ranks sixth in fantasy points per dropback with 0.54 and is a mid-range QB1.

hiddem gems

Similarly, Mayfield is playing inspired football right now. He’s coming off a 3 TD game against the Eagles where he threw for 337 yards. Other than the Week 18 stinker vs. the Panthers, he’s thrown at least 2 TDs in every game since Week 14.

When you look at our projections for this weekend, you’ll see Mayfield and Love slot in as the QB4 and QB5 despite getting drafted as the QB7 and QB8:

QB projections

This makes them slam dunk selections in Battle Royale contests.

Not only are we getting QBs who straight-up project better than the three QBs going ahead of them (CJ Stroud, Patrick Mahomes, and Jared Goff), but we are also getting outsized rewards when they do hit because the majority of the field isn’t drafting them.

Bonus: Another nice thing about Mayfield and Love is that you can compound your Hidden Gems leverage by pairing them with one of their pass catchers who also isn’t getting drafted in 100% of contests.

Both of these offenses spread the ball around in a way that makes it attractive to take stabs on the less popular pieces. We’re only one week removed from Romeo Doubs, Trey Palmer, and David Moore all putting up big scores after going largely undrafted.

  • Packers targets: Christian Watson (34.3), Dontayvion Wicks (34.9), and Luke Musgrave (35.4)

  • Bucs targets: Cade Otton (34.7), Palmer (35.8), and Moore (36)

Cooterdoodle's Favorite Tweets (Aug 2022)
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