Week 12 Flex Targets DraftKings 2017

By Armando Marsal
Armando Marsal Using the flex position wisely can allow you to differentiate and create unique lineups. Every week calls for different situations, sometimes pricing favors having a receiver at the flex, while other times it favors having a running back. Then there are weeks where playing two tight ends makes sense. It is really dependent on how you construct your rosters, but as usual, I will talk about players from each position that can be plugged into your flex spot.

Running Back

Duke Johnson $4,600 at Cincinnati Bengals
Johnson is not going to run the ball 18 times, but he does lead the Browns in targets this year, averaging six per game and has received fewer than five targets in a single game just once this season. He has established a nice floor because of that, scoring single digit fantasy points just three times this season. Two of the performances came against the top two run defenses in the league. This week he faces off against the Bengals who are giving up 98.5 rushing yards per game, while surrendering five rushing touchdowns and have also allowed 63 receptions for 455 yards and two touchdowns. Johnson combined for 60 yards and a touchdown, with nine receptions in Week 4 against the Bengals this season, which was good for 21 fantasy points. While that type of production is tough to replicate, he should still be able to do enough to pay off his salary and also offers the upside to exceed expectations.

J.D. McKissic $3,700 at San Francisco 49ers
The Seahawks play the 49ers this week, a defense that is giving up 117.4 rushing yards per game and has surrendered six rushing touchdowns, while yielding 4.15 yards per carry. They have also allowed 60 receptions for a league high 617 yards and four receiving touchdowns to opposing backs, while giving up the most fantasy points per game. The Seattle backfield has been a hot mess all season, but McKissic played in 68 percent of the team’s snaps in Week 11 and received 12 touches. For the second straight game, he was involved in the passing game, with at least five targets in each of those contests. Mike Davis hurt his groin last game and is unlikely to play this week, Thomas Rawls was a healthy scratch last week due to his continuous struggles, and Eddie Lacy is averaging 2.5 yards per carry this season. Clearly there is no real threat to McKissic on this backfield, but he is a risky play due to the lack of consistent volume. That said, at this low price, I am willing to take that risk because there is plenty of upside, the matchup is as good as it gets, and he is trending in the right direction.

Wide Receiver

Kenny Stills $4,800 at New England Patriots
Jay Cutler remains in the concussion protocol, which could lead to a Matt Moore start. If that ends up being the case, this is a very good situation for Stills, especially at this price. Last year, Moore started the last three games of the regular season for the injured Ryan Tannehill and in those weeks, Stills scored a touchdown in each game, while being peppered with 18 targets. So far this season in three Moore appearances, Stills has received no less than eight targets in all three of those games, scoring double-digit fantasy points in each of those contests, including two 20+ fantasy point games and three touchdowns catches, all of which have come from Moore. It is clear that Moore feels comfortable getting Stills the ball, so if Cutler is indeed out, Stills is someone I will have a lot of exposure to. If Cutler plays, I will not roster Stills with as much conviction, but he can still be considered a viable option.

Cooper Kupp $5,000 vs. New Orleans Saints
The Rams suffered a big loss when Robert Woods got hurt last week, as he led the team in targets, receptions, and receiving yards, while being tied for most receiving touchdowns with Sammy Watkins. Woods averaged seven targets per game and that will have to be distributed amongst the pass catchers for the Rams. My guess is that Kupp will see a lot of those looks as he is already second on the team with 61 targets, averaging 6.1 per game. He draws a good matchup against De’Vante Harris who grades out below average on Pro Football Focus and a matchup that Kupp has a 52 percent advantage rating in, one of the highest of the week. This game is projected to be the highest scoring of the slate and the Rams have a healthy implied total, so they should put some points on the board. Considering the potential volume and game script, as well as the matchup, Kupp makes a lot of sense at this reasonable price tag.

Tight End

Tyler Kroft $3,900 vs. Cleveland Browns
Kroft draws a very nice matchup this week against a Browns defense that is dead last in DVOA against tight ends and is yielding 6.5 receptions as well as 61.9 receiving yards per game, while giving up eight touchdowns. Kroft has a 42 percent advantage rating in this matchup according to Pro Football Focus, which is by far the highest of this week for any tight end. Although his targets have been inconsistent for the majority of the season, he has averaged 4.6 targets per game since Week 3 and has appeared in 79 percent of the Bengals snaps this year. Kroft’s best game of the season came against this Browns team in Week 4, when he caught 6-of-7 targets for 68 yards and two touchdowns. I am not saying that is going to happen again, but he did have his ceiling game in this same matchup earlier this year which is worth pointing out. He is dealing with a hand injury which is something to monitor, but assuming he is full go with no limitations, he is an enticing option. If he cannot give it a go for whatever reason, Jared Cook is also a tight end I am keen on and costs $700 more.

Good luck to all this week. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me on the Twitter machine: @Armando_Marsal