DFS With Doug: Week 2

If you are new to DFS, a Primer is available here. Full Appendix available at the bottom for any terms not understood here. 

Week 1 is in the books, and we are onto a new week and slate. Prices have tightened up a bit here for Week 2, but that does not mean there is not some great value on the board. Coming into Week 2, it is important to remember that a one-game sample size is not enough to make sweeping declarations. Anchor and recency bias will be prevalent in the lineup building this week. This creates opportunities for bounce-back weeks and some regression to the mean. 

Highest Totals

As always, I want to look at high-total games to get the big-picture view of a slate. This week we have one total higher than the rest, Kansas City @ Jacksonville (51). This AFC duel has two of the game’s best quarterbacks and will be heavily stacked from both sides. We have other games in the high 40s: Seattle @ Detroit (47.5, but opened at 51), Las Vegas @ Buffalo (46.5), and Baltimore @ Cincinnati (46.5). A decent selection of games that could shoot out gives us a lot of choices for how we want to build lineups.

Jared Goff


Josh Allen (BUF): $7,900 vs. Las Vegas

Word of warning, there is a good chance he is the most popular quarterback on the slate. Josh Allen’s ceiling can be completely slate-breaking. Few guys possess his upside in both the passing game and in the running game. You will have to fight against a lot of other Allen lineups, so make sure you make your lineup unique somehow if you want to win in a large field. 

Joe Burrow (CIN): $6,900 vs. Baltimore

Didn’t I recommend Burrow last week? I’ll double down on him again this week. This is a spot where recency bias could cause cowards to shy away from Joe Burrow. He appeared to have some rust from missing some time in the preseason, the weather was awful, and the Browns’ defense is legitimately awesome. Do not overreact to one poor game, Joe “cool” is still good at football. 

Trevor Lawrence (JAX): $6,700 vs. Kansas City

This is a great game environment here, but like Allen, he will be popular. The easy stack to make is Lawrence, Calvin Ridley, and Zay Jones. It is inexpensive and has a huge ceiling. Christian Kirk and Evan Engram are viable as well if you want to make your lineup unique. The bringbacks are tricky unless you just jam Kelce, but you will need to be creative elsewhere in your lineup.

Jared Goff (DET): $6,200 vs. Seattle

This total opened at 51 but has dropped down to 47.5. I am not deterred. The last time these teams met was a slate-breaking 48-45 shootout. While that might be an unreasonable expectation from this week’s matchup, it shows these teams can both give up and put up a lot of points. Amon-Ra St. Brown is the obvious stacking partner, but I would still try to double stack with another Detroit WR or even the tight end, Sam LaPorta

Daniel Jones (NYG): $6,000 @ Arizona

After what happened last Sunday night I cannot be here recommending that you play Danny Dimes/Vanilla Vick in a DFS lineup for real U.S. American dollars. Yes, I can. That game on Sunday Night got away from them so fast that it is not the most useful data point. The positives of playing Jones include his ability to run the ball, cheap stacking options, and nobody wants to click Daniel Jones’ name after last week.

Quarterback Strategy

The big-time options in high totaled games are very appealing but they will be very popular. So when you play those guys just be aware that you will need to make an effort to get different. There are some reasonable budget/contrarian options though and you can also do mini stacks at other positions to get exposure to those high total games without risking a dup’d or overly chalky lineup. 

Running Back

Christian McCaffrey (SF): $8,900 @ Los Angeles (N)

The most expensive player on the slate and he will still be very popular. I don’t think I have to tell you that CMC is very good at football. The 49ers constantly scheme to get him in open space where he is potentially the most dangerous player in football. The biggest risk involved with him is if the 49ers get up too much too fast and Elijah Mitchell takes over. At this price tag, he needs to be the highest-scoring player at his position to justify but he has that upside in his bag.

Josh Jacobs (LV): $7,100 @ Buffalo

Right now Josh Jacobs is projecting a decent amount of ownership, I am not sure if that will shake out on Sunday. In theory, he is excellent leverage against Josh Allen stacks. I like the play because of how easily the Jets were able to rip off big runs on Monday night. Yes, I know that Breece Hall is special but Josh Jacobs is no scrub himself. 

Travis Etienne Jr. (JAX): $6,900 vs. Kansas City

This is a leverage play against Trevor Lawrence ownership. While Etienne will have some ownership, he is playing in the highest total game on the board and has some big game upside. You can even set up a mini-stack with him and Kelce to get some great exposure to this game while having your primary stack be another game. 

Jahmyr Gibbs (DET): $6,300 vs. Seattle

I know David Montgomery got most of the work last week, but this is where I am trying to be a week ahead of the breakout. At some point this season, Gibbs will have a breakout game. The week after, everyone will be playing him and I have no edge on the field. If I play him the week of the breakout, I could get a massive edge. I may have to eat it on the chin for a couple of weeks, but if I hit at the end of that, it can pay for all those losses. My favorite play on the slate. 

Rachaad White (TB): $5,500 vs. Chicago

Cash game play here for me. While Rashaad White was not efficient last week, he got the volume. I am a bit off of him for tournament play though, I am not sure what kind of ceiling he has. Similar to last week though, volume at this price is hard to ignore. I will take 19 touches at $5,500 even if they are bad touches.

Joshua Kelley (LAC): $5,000 @ Tennessee

Some late chalk developed at the end of the week with Austin Ekeler not even flying with the team to Nashville. The Chargers offense still has a ton of explosion, and Joshua Kelley has shown some burst in spots in the past. He will be a lock for cash games, but I may pass on him for tournament play because of how high his ownership will be. With tournament play, you will need to find a way to make your lineup different if you want to play Kelley in your lineup. A $5K running back often opens up a ton of options though.

Running Back Strategy

I am finding it hard to get off of running back chalk this week. That is a big part of why I love Gibbs on this slate. There are some more contrarian options like Bijan Robinson or Breece Hall that you can play but I may just eat the chalk here and try to get different at other positions. 

Wide Receiver

Ja’Marr Chase (CIN): $7,900 vs. Baltimore

The best wide receiver on the slate at a sub $8K price point is an incredible value. I know he is gonna be chalky but the upside available at this price is impossible to ignore. Whether I play him as a solo piece, part of a Burrow Stack, the bringback from a Lamar Jackson stack, or even a mini correlation with a Mark Andrews or Zay Flowers; I just want to have as much exposure to Chase as I possibly can even if he is chalky. This is such a classic bounce-back spot.

D.K. Metcalf (SEA): $7,000 @ Detroit

As you can see I just want all the exposure to the Lions and Seahawks I can get. A lot of what I’m going to say can be applied to Tyler Lockett and even Jaxon Smith-Njigba. While the Lions’ defense held Mahomes to a measly 226 yards passing, it wasn’t because players didn’t get open. I love this bounce-back spot and nobody is going to want to click a Seahawk receiver after how bad their offense was last week. Great contrarian play that plays nicely as a bringback to either Goff stacks, Gibbs, or even just with Amon-Ra St. Brown as a mini correlation. You can also stack Geno just fine this week if you want to bring the spice.

Michael Pittman Jr. (IND): $6,300 @ Houston

Michael Pittman Jr. is another WR with a huge ceiling that people are not going to want to click. The matchup with Houston’s “good pass defense” from last season is misleading. If you are constantly behind you don’t give up a lot of passing yards because people are running the clock out against you. Indianapolis is not necessarily good enough to blow Houston out of the water. A competitive game could mean a lot of run for Pittman. Josh Downs and Alec Pierce are nice cheap options for the same reason. 

Gabe Davis (BUF): $5,800 vs. Las Vegas

He will get featured in many Josh Allen lineups, but he is also a great way to gain some exposure to the Bills offense even without playing Allen. Gabe Davis is the perfect DFS WR. He can have massive games with multiple long touchdowns but isn’t consistent enough for people to have the guts to play him. Sports bettors also can recognize this as another bounce-back spot for a team following an embarrassing loss. 

Nico Collins (HOU): $4,800 vs. Indianapolis

I have been waiting for his breakout for dynasty purposes for a while but now I can also jam him into my DFS lineups. Despite the low total, the Colts and Texans have some decent stacking appeal. You can play a skinny stack with Richardson and Downs brought back with Nico then use your leftover money to pay up for all the other studs in other matchups. Either way, I would try to find a way to squeeze Nico in some lineups, 11 targets in Week 1 is no joke.

Zay Jones (JAX): $4,700 vs. Kansas City

Zay Jones will garner some ownership due to the game he is participating in. That and he is WR2 for the Jaguars now and is coming in at a sub $5K price tag. Puka Nacua eating up a ton of ownership at $4,900 may be keeping his ownership may be keeping his ownership down a bit. Puca is a fantastic play in his own right but his ownership is a little too high for my liking in tournament play. Zay Jones could be decent leverage in this spot. 

Kadarius Toney (KC): $4,600 @ Jacksonville

I have seen the memes. I am aware of what happened in the season opener. He was targeted on half the plays he was in the game while Skyy Moore was just out there getting his conditioning in by running routes every play for no targets. The Chiefs lack options at WR and Toney does have a ton of explosive ability. Sometimes winning at DFS is playing the guy that nobody else has the guts to. 

Wide Receiver Strategy

This week I am fading almost all the wide receiver chalk not named Ja’Marr Chase. I will make exceptions: if I am stacking with their quarterback or for exposure to a potentially high-scoring game. I’m probably eating a ton of chalk at RB and some at QB too. So, I want to use the WRs on the slate to separate my lineups from others. The WR position is far more volatile so even guys that don’t pop in projections can have massive ceilings. 

Dalton Kincaid

Tight End

Travis Kelce (KC): $7,600 @ Jacksonville

Spending up for Kelce does mean you have to try and squeeze the rest of your roster but you could also end up with a slate-breaking positional edge that makes your lineup soar above all others. He is a cheat code in all formats and worth paying up for and eating chalk for. No other tight end has the same upside as Travis Kelce. Mark Andrews will sometimes be the better play for a bit cheaper, but Kelce still has the highest ceiling. I’ve already talked about how good this game environment is ad nauseam and that all applies to Kelce. 

Kyle Pitts (ATL): $4,200 vs. Green Bay

Last week, I suggested Drake London and he flopped. So this week, we will try another Falcon. At some point, Arthur Smith must realize these dudes are talented. Until then I’m gonna recommend these uber-talented guys at bargain bin prices and low ownership because everyone has been burned. 

Dalton Kincaid (BUF): $3,300 vs. Las Vegas

Despite a pedestrian stat line in Week 1, we have a lot to be encouraged by from Kincaid. He lined up in the slot a ton, was only used to pass block one time, and saw a lot of snaps. He could have a huge game on the horizon and like I’ve said with others before, you want to be ahead of the breakout instead of behind it with these things. 

Luke Musgrave (GB): $3,200 @ Atlanta

Musgrave is the chalky, safe, cash game tight end for me this week. That may change if I have a bunch of leftover salary due to values on Sunday but for now, he feels like a safe floor at a cheap price. As per usual, I will not play the cheap chalk tight end in tournament play. I will either pick another less popular cheap tight end (see Kincaid) or pay up (Kelce, Andrews, Pitts). 

Tight End Strategy

I love stacking my tight end to my quarterback, especially if that tight end is not a popular play. If I prefer to double stack WRs for that QB; I will use Kelce, Andrews, Pitts, or Kincaid. None of the other options excite me as a one-of at this stage. 

D/ST Strategy

Do not overthink D/ST in DFS. It is really hard to predict and you are better off just trying to stay off of chalk even if it’s a “bad” play. For cash go ahead and play either the cheapest D/ST or the best value D/ST. For GPPs, here are the basic rules I try to follow for selecting a D/ST.

  1. Never play the highest-owned D/ST, this week that would be Arizona.
  2. Never play a defense that plays against any of my offensive players.
  3. Try to correlate my D/ST with one of my RBs.
  4. Be willing to leave salary on the table to avoid dup’d lineups. 

These rules can always be broken, but this is generally my starting place. This week, for example, I might play the Jaguars D/ST with Travis Etienne Jr. as a way to gain leverage on the chalky Chiefs plays on the slate. At $2.5K, they could be bad but the savings are enough to get us there. 


Try to build a game script with your primary stack this week. There are some quality stacking options at the top of the board and some reasonable mid-range stacks as well. It may be tough to get to contrarian at running back but wide receiver has a ton of great pivot options off of the chalky ones. The pricing has tightened up from Week 1 so you can’t just load up with stars, you will need to find some values. Remember not to let what you saw last week affect your lineup building too much, that’s how you end up with the same lineup everyone else played. DFF annual subscribers receive access to our Discord where you can tag me with any of your DFS questions. 

Thanks so much for reading, If you want to discuss more reach me on Twitter, find me @DougHarrelson on there. Also don’t forget to sign up for our Dynasty Football Factory Membership to get all things Dynasty, Redraft, DFS, Sports Betting, Devy, and IDP. Annual Subscribers also get access to our discord server where you can get access to our entire staff!

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