S DFS Daily Optimal Lineup Strategy 2015 week 16 | Fantasy Football
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Building a DraftKings Lineup Around Teams with Nothing to Lose
By Jen Ryan

(Lineup Tool: http://www.footballdiehards.com/fantasyfootball/dailygames/Lineup-Generator.cfm)

As the weeks left in football become slimmer and slimmer the daily fantasy window is rapidly closing. Each week I like to take one lineup where I throw all of the research I have done all week out of my head and build an outside-of-the-box lineup. With the season starting to come to a close I began thinking about players who are out of playoff contention and have nothing to lose. Some of these players will be auditioning for free agency and some will be back with their teams next season. There could be an elevated level of play from someone who has nothing to lose and maybe something to prove. All of the players in my lineup below are out of the playoffs and are playing for nothing other than their team, pride and future.

QB – Tyrod Taylor - $5,500
Taylor will be facing a Cowboys team at home this weekend that is also finished for the season. There is nothing special about their defense and I see no reason why Taylor will not be able to throw and run on them. Mobile quarterbacks, for me, are always a plus in daily games and Taylor is highly effective with his legs. The Cowboys may rank sixth against the pass but their 18th-ranked run defense gives Taylor a tick up in terms of upside.

RB – Doug Martin - $6,600
Since Week 11 Martin has tallied no less than 86 total yards. He will face the Bears’ 26th-ranked run defense that is allowing running backs an average of 125.9 yards per game. Martin is chasing the rushing title and will be a free agent in 2016. He could use this week to remind the Buccaneers why they should consider re-signing him in the offseason.

RB – Karlos Williams - $4,500
The rookie is finally healthy coming into a game where the Bills will be without LeSean McCoy. I mentioned regarding Tyrod Taylor that the Cowboys roll out the 18th-ranked run defense. Williams is a bit of a risk with the emergence of Mike Gillislee, who is a threat to vulture goal-line work, but I like Williams to carry the bulk of the load. In limited opportunities this season Williams has scored five touchdowns and recorded two 100-yard games.

WR – Sammy Watkins - $6,700
Watkins has scored in each of his past four games and has three 100-yard games over that same time. He has been on fire recently and will have a tough matchup on paper this week. The Dallas defense is surprisingly ranked 6th against the pass but with Watkins’ big-play ability he will have the upside to put up a ton of yardage and score again this week. I am putting a lot of my eggs in the Buffalo basket but risk involved feels like it could bring reward.

WR – Jarvis Landry - $6,400
Ryan Tannehill has blinders on when it comes to Landry and he has no problem force-feeding him the ball. His season-long four touchdowns are a major disappointment but some of that can be blamed on quarterback play. Regardless, he will be going against the Colts 29th-ranked pass defense. He will have to shake the Vontae Davis shadow but with his movement around the field I think Landry will have his opportunities. We know the targets will be there and the matchup should help the production.

WR – Golden Tate - $5,800
I could have afforded Calvin Johnson here but I am not looking for another week of decoy play from him. Tate has stepped up in a big way and Stafford has locked in on his WR2. He has scored 22.5 and 28.5 points over his past two games and this week will have a chance to crack the 20-point mark again. The San Francisco 49ers’ pass-defense ranks 26th in the league and Tate has been heavily featured in the red zone as of late. He has scored twice in each of his past two games.

TE – Delanie Walker - $5,600
Walker was a limited participant in practice this week but I am confident in his chances of suiting up. He has done no worse than 14.1 points since Week 11. I am not concerned about Zach Mettenberger being under center. He and walker hooked up for 62 yards on six receptions when he was given the start back in Week 8. Walker is essentially the focal point of the Titans offense and although the Houston Texans boast a stout defense I still like Walker’s odds of being featured this weekend.

Flex – Jay Ajayi - $3,000
The Dolphins’ coaching staff hates Lamar Miller. Over his past few games Ajayi has consistently been given more touches. With nothing left to gain in 2015 the Dolphins should be ready to give an even bigger role to their rookie in order to evaluate him. Miller is a free agent in 2016 and the Dolphins will not be able to move him for much if he succumbs to an injury in these final meaningless games. Ajayi scored last week and could do so again this week against the 25th-ranked Colts’ rush defense.

DST – Bills - $3,200
The Bills may not have lived up to the hype of being an oddly feared “Rex Ryan defense” this season but they could put on a show at home against the Dallas Cowboys this weekend. We already know Kellen Moore will be under center, who threw one touchdown to three interceptions in his professional debut. The Cowboys will also be without Dez Bryant. The Bills will have no one to focus on really besides Darren McFadden. They should be able to generate turnovers and maybe even reward me with a defensive score.

James A. Baldwin once famously said that “the most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose.” Granted that is a bit deep in comparing football to a society but the parallels remain the same. People behave differently when they have nothing to lose and in football it could motivate a player to play with a bigger chip on his shoulder. It is a bold strategy to stack a team with players who are no longer fighting for a playoff bid but bold makes money sometimes. It will be interesting to see if it does this weekend.