DFS Three And Out 2021 week 7
Here we go. ... It's a reasonably-priced running back edition! And here you have three I'm investing heavily in for tournament (GPP) play from this game this week. ... And one I'm not.
Mike Davis, RB, Atlanta Falcons ($5,200 on DraftKings; $6,300 on FanDuel)
So I really wanted to roll Cordarrelle Patterson out here. But so does everybody else. ... That being the case, I think I'll turn to Davis. Here's the thing. The Falcons are becoming very effective when it comes to scoring. Starting in Week 2, Atlanta has scored touchdowns on 78.6 percent of its 14 red zone drives -- fourth in the NFL -- and the Falcons have turned red zone drives into points on all 16 red zone appearances this season, including Week 1. They are one of only five teams to do so through Week 5. Atlanta has 15 red zone rushes -- 10 for Davis, five for Patterson -- and both Davis and Patterson ($5,200 on DraftKings; $6,300 on FanDuel) have combined for the team's two rushing touchdowns. Davis has benefited from getting five-of-seven goal-to-go rushing attempts. Meanwhile, as ESPN's Matthew Berry nots, Davis, who has been on the field for 66 percent of the Falcons' offensive snaps, has at least 15 touches and 10 fantasy points in every game this season, and Miami is allowing the fourth-most fantasy points per game to running backs. In fact, as ESPN.com's Tristan H. Cockroft points out, Devin Singletary and Zack Moss each managed at least 15 points against them in Week 2, Peyton Barber scored 23 in Week 3 and Leonard Fournette totaled 21 points in Week 5. There is room for upside here if the Falcons find their way to the red zone.
Darrel Williams, RB, Kansas City Chiefs ($5,800 on DraftKings; $6,700 on FanDuel)
Williams generated 89 yards from scrimmage in the first regular-season start of his four-year NFL career. He also reached the end zone twice last Sunday while filling in for injured starter Clyde Edwards-Helaire. In fact, as ESPN.com's Al Zeidenfeld pointed out, Williams played on more snaps (84.5 percent) in Week 6 than Edwards-Helaire did in any game during Weeks 1-5. Williams' 24 touches against the Football Team were five more than Edwards-Helaire has had in any game this season. Williams also every single red-zone touch and goal-line carry. With the over/under sitting at 57.5 points, this matchup against a Titans defense that gives up 25 points per game to opposing RBs isn't just appealing, it's downright mouthwatering.
Chuba Hubbard, RB, Carolina Panthers ($6,100 on DraftKings; $7,300 on FanDuel)
The Panthers have lost three straight since a 3-0 start. They averaged 31 rushes the first three games compared to 25.6 the past three. They had only 23 rushes in Sunday's 34-28 overtime loss to the Vikings. With Christian McCaffrey sitting out the past three games with a hamstring injury -- and now out at least the next two after going on injured reserve, opposing defenses have manned up against the team's wideouts and rushed five. That has put more pressure on quarterback Sam Darnold, who has thrown six interceptions over the past three games after throwing only one in the first three. The Panthers have eight total turnovers during their losing streak, compared to two in the first three games. Head coach Matt Rhule noted that all eight came on passing plays. "If you call 16, 18, 19, 24, 25 runs, you better have an elite passing game," Rhule said. "And right now that's not our strength." Rhule said the "shame" of Sunday's loss was the Panthers were running well with Hubbard, who had 61 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries against the Vikings. "We just have not been committed enough to running it," Rhule said. "And that's going to change. I can tell you right now." You don't even have to read between the lines here folks. Rhule is telling us -- and telling offensive coordinator Joe Brady -- he wasn't to run the ball more. The league average for designed rush percentage this season is 37.5 percent. Carolina ranks 26th over the past three games at 33.7, according to research by ESPN Stats and Information. Rhule said he went into Sunday's game wanting to run 33 times and he'd like to average that moving forward. That being the case, it's worth noting Hubbard has averaged 17.7 carries per game and 3.7 targets per game over the last three weeks. Any increase in that workload could pay off this week against a Giants defense that gave up 24 fantasy points to Ezekiel Elliott in Week 5 and 23 to Darrell Henderson in Week 6.
Khalil Herbert, RB, Chicago Bears ($5200 on DraftKings; $6,000 on FanDuel)
As I write these words, there has been no update on the availability of Damien Williams, who spent last week's game on the Reserve/COVID list. According to the latest reports, Saturday would be the earliest Williams could be cleared -- if he's cleared. For the purposes of this column, I'm going to assume Hebert gets the workload to himself again. If he does not, take everything here and double the negatives. ... As Chicago Sun-Times staffer Mark Potash notes, after an offensive implosion against the Browns in Week 3, the Bears have placed an all-hands-on-deck emphasis on their running game. So far, that strategy has worked. Even with David Montgomery suffering a knee injury and Williams sitting out last week, the Bears have consistently run the ball against the Lions (39 carries, 188 yards, three touchdowns), Raiders (37-143, one touchdown) and Packers (26-140, one touchdown.) In that span, their 117.8 yards per game ranks fourth in the NFL. Their 4.6 yards per carry ranks 11th. Their five touchdowns is tied for third. Herbert could have to carry most of the load Sunday. The rookie had 19 carries for 97 yards and a touchdown against the Packers. In 37 carries against the Raiders and Packers, Herbert does not have a negative rush. But the Bears success have come against the 28th-ranked Lions run defense, the 24th-ranked Raiders and 13th-ranked Packers. Sunday will be a truer test as they go up against a Buccaneers defense that ranks first in the NFL in rushing defense (54.8 yards per game) and second in rushing average (3.4 yards per carry). The Buccaneers' defense has 10 tackles-for-loss in 95 rushing attempts against them this season. Opposing RBs are scoring the ninth-fewest PPR points (20.6 per game) against them this season. A pass-heavy game script may also be required, and Herbert's upside could be capped as a result.