DFS Running Back Analysis: Wild Card Edition

Jan 04, 2018
DFS Running Back Analysis: Wild Card Edition

I'm subbing in for Ryan Hodge this week with a breakdown of all the DFS-relevant running backs in the Wild Card round. Since I expect ownership to be relatively flat this week, I will divide RBs up by stud/mid-range/value, disregarding the usual chalk tier.


With seven top-15 fantasy RBs on the four-game slate, whether you end up needing to double up on stud RBs to win a GPP will depend on the performance of the mid-tier RBs. Leonard Fournette is likely to be the highest-owned stud RB because he's the cheapest while Todd Gurley is likely to be underowned relative to his upside because of how much he costs.

  • Todd Gurley ($9,700 DK/$10,000 FD) has by far the highest cash and GPP odds on the slate on both sites. The Falcons rank first in RB aFPA, but Gurley has smashed in other spots against top-ranked defenses in that metric. And despite that No. 1 rank, Atlanta has allowed the most receptions (107) and fifth-most receiving yards in the league to opposing backs (802). Gurley finished top-five among RBs in both of those categories despite sitting out in Week 17.
  • Alvin Kamara ($8,600/$9,100) touched the ball on 52.8% of snaps in Weeks 14–17 after doing so on only 41.6% of snaps in Weeks 6–13, making Kamara the slight favorite for touches since the backs tend to split snaps these days (Ingram 55%, Kamara 52% over the past three weeks). Carolina is top-five in RB aFPA, but Kamara hasn’t had any efficiency issues in other tough matchups and his 1.55 PPR points per touch is higher than any other RB with 50 or more touches.
  • Kareem Hunt ($8,100/$8,200) handled 62.5% of Kansas City’s combined carries and targets inside the 10-yard line in Weeks 13–16 under new playcaller Matt Nagy after handling only 39.1% of such opportunities in Weeks 1–12. Hunt’s targets per game nearly doubled under Nagy, from 2.7 to 5.3, which bodes well against a Titans defense that allowed 127 more receiving yards to RBs than any other team in the league this season. Hunt is a high-floor, high-ceiling play as a home favorite against Tennessee.
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