This week’s single-game Thursday night slate looks to be a little harder to predict than last week. Last week had an easier strategy surrounding it: fade Nick Foles and go all in on Julio Jones and the Philadelphia Eagles running backs. That was my advice at least.
It seemed to work. Most people who went by that strategy seemed to place relatively high in their respective contests. However, this week presents a different challenge.
NFL Week Two Daily Fantasy Picks: Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals
*All picks are based on Fanduel prices*
It is conceivable that any of the following players could have fantastic games: Joe Mixon, A.J. Green, Andy Dalton, John Ross, Joe Flacco, Alex Collins, Michael Crabtree or Willie Snead. The fact that any of them could go for two touchdowns in a game that might be limited to just three or four touchdowns makes it harder to pick the correct MVP for Thursday night’s contest.
Last week, the Cincinnati Bengals scored 34 points on the road while the Baltimore Ravens scored 47 at home. This week’s contest is being played in Cincinnati, but with those point totals from last week, it’s hard to completely fade one offense.
However, that is what you are going to have to do.
With so many players that can all score a lot of points, you will have to not only go all in on a team but also go all in on a scheme.
The best way to go is to either pick Dalton and all of the Bengals wide receivers, running backs from both teams or kickers from both teams mixed with other players.
For me, I went all in on the Bengals.
I couldn’t get the roster I wanted by pairing together Dalton, Mixon, and Green so I decided to just fade Dalton.
I created two lineups with the same players, just changing whom my MVP is in each format. The first lineup consists of Mixon (MVP), paired with kicker Randy Bullock, Green, Collins and Giovani Bernard.
I didn’t have enough salary to roster Dalton, Green and Mixon while still have viable players with the rest of my money.
In order to place, I am counting on the fact that Dalton doesn’t target the other Bengals options on offense along with not running for any touchdowns. I am also counting on a flat game from Flacco. If he were to go out and toss a few touchdowns my chances of placing or making any real money are very slim.
With Ravens running back Kenneth Dixon out indefinitely, the lone Raven I am rostering is Alex Collins. Collins had a forgettable game against the Buffalo Bills, rushing seven times for 13 yards and a touchdown.
However, with Dixon out, I think the Ravens will try to establish the run with Collins taking over in the backfield.
Lastly, I am rostering Bullock because the Bengals rarely light up the scoreboard in primetime. If Bullock hits a couple field goals he could finish the night as one of the top scorers.
In a divisional matchup with a lot of offense options and no clear players to fade, this matchup presents a tough challenge for daily fantasy players. Whichever direction you decide to go in, it’s just awesome to have football back.