Yahoo! DFS Single Game Breakdown: Vikings at Packers

Jan 01, 2022
Yahoo! DFS Single Game Breakdown: Vikings at Packers

The Vikings have lost starting quarterback Kirk Cousins to COVID and will be starting Sean Mannion. Mannion has two starts into his NFL career, and he was unable to throw for over 200 yards in either of them. Dalvin Cook is returning from his stint on the COVID list and will be the focal point of this offense. Adam Thielen is out for the year, which will give Dede Westbrook and Ihmir Smith-Marsette a chance to earn some playing time. For the Packers, Aaron Rodgers has thrown three or more touchdowns in four of his last five starters, and this streak started the last time he played the Vikings. Marquez Valdes-Scantling returned from his stint from Covid-IR and had a big game against the Vikings in their first matchup.

Vegas Lines

Over/Under: 42

Vikings Implied Total: 14.5

Packers Implied Total: 27.5

The Packers are heavy favorites in this one, and this game is going to be unique from a game flow perspective. With Sean Mannion under center, it will be up to the Vikings' rushing attack to lead them on drives, and the Packers have been susceptible to the run in recent weeks.

Potential Game Flow Scenarios

Divisional rivalries are always a little bit unique, but the Packers are playing well on offense as of late, but have given up 20 or more points in five straight games.

About 50% of Aaron Rodgers' passing touchdowns have come from the last five games where he has thrown for 16 touchdowns and zero interceptions. He has also averaged over eight yards an attempt and 300 yards a game during this span. The wide receiver that has helped mostly with that is Davante Adams who has seven of these 16 touchdowns. Against the Vikings, Adams has had over 20 points in three straight games. As for the big-play capability, Valdes-Scantling has led this team in 20+ yard targets, and in their previous three matchups with the Vikings, he has two games over 90 yards receiving. Valdes-Scantling will be a very volatile play because he depends on the deep ball, and even in these two games over 90 yards, he only managed to catch four passes. Allen Lazard did not play in their first matchup with the Vikings, and in his last four games has had five or more targets in three of them. Recently Aaron Jones has been able to get more usage than Dillon. Dillon has not played over 50% of the snaps in their last two games, while Jones has had 12 more touches. As Jones has gotten healthier, it seems like he will continue to get more touches, but it will come down to the touchdowns for both of these backs to pay off value. The Vikings also give up 4.7 yards a carry, have given up over 100 yards rushing in five straight games but have only managed to give up ten rushing touchdowns this year.

The Packers have an advantage through the air, and it will come down to how much they are pushed offensively with Mannion under center. These games have all had the opponent scoring over 20 points, and making sure the Packers have to keep scoring. I expect Rodgers to have multiple touchdowns in this game, and will heavily involve Adams. The rushing attack will get used once their lead is established, and carry them through the ending of the game.

In his two starts, Sean Mannion has failed to complete over 60% of his passes and has not surpassed six yards per attempt. He threw two interceptions and lost a fumble in his most recent start with the Vikings. Of his 21 pass attempts in this game, seven went to the running backs, and no player managed to receive over four targets. In this Vikings receiving room, I expect Justin Jefferson to be the target most of the time, but I can't see an efficient day to pay off his salary. Without Adam Thielen, other players will get run in the wide receiver room, and both Dede Westbrook and Ihmir Smith-Marsette should see snaps. As long as this game isn't a blowout early on, I expect the Vikings to be running the ball more than 60% of the time, and especially running it near the red zone. The rushing attack will have to carry this offense, and they are more than capable of it. Dalvin Cook has 417 yards in his last two games in Lambeau but is coming off the COVID list and could experience fatigue, so I am interested in Alexander Mattison. Both running backs are capable runners, and in their last three games, the Packers have given up over 130 yards rushing. In a similar running scheme, Nick Chubb had 126 yards on 17 carries, with D'Ernest Johnson rushing for 58 yards on just four carries.

The Vikings will not trust Mannion in the red zone, so the players I am expecting to get the work are Cook and Mattison. The Vikings are only implied two touchdowns, but I see a way where they are able to keep the game closer early on and put up points on the ground. I do not anticipate Mannion to throw for many yards against this defense, and both of these running backs to find over 15 touches.

Here's a brief rundown of which players would likely benefit the most from various game flow scenarios.

Close, low-scoring game

Close, high-scoring game

Blowout for the home team

Blowout for the road team

Cheap/Unique Stacking Option

Superstar Dalvin Cook, Vikings $35/ Alexander Mattison, Vikings $23

If the Vikings want to keep this game close they will need to run the ball, and the Packers have given up over 100 yards rushing in three straight games. With Sean Mannion under center, there will be an opportunity for both of these running backs to see over 15 touches.

Low-Salary Volatile Plays

Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Packers $18

Valdes-Scantling leads this team on deep targets, and if I am playing him it is for that reasoning. In the three games that Valdes-Scantling has over 50 yards receiving he has also found the end zone, and against the Vikings the first time he had over 100 yards receiving.

Vikings $14

The Vikings have forced a turnover in five straight games, and the game script can work in their favor if they manage to establish that running game. I am only considering them in lineups with Dalvin Cook.

Packers $12

Both defenses this week are game script dependant; if the Packers can't stop the running game, there will not be many opportunities to create points for the defense, but if they can score early in the game, they will get the opportunities to force turnovers.

Josiah Deguara, Packers $10

Deguara has been running over 60% of the routes in four straight games and did score a touchdown in their first matchup.

Superstar Plays

Davante Adams, Packers $40

The Vikings rank 31st in 4for4's aFPA rankings, and Adams has had seven touchdowns in their last three matchups. The Vikings have no answer for Adams, and he is capable of repeating previous performances.

Aaron Rodgers, Packers $38

Rodgers has been playing at an MVP level, but the Vikings have only allowed 300 yards passing three times this season. He is not my preferred Superstar but has multiple touchdown upside to outscore the flex players.

Dalvin Cook, Vikings $35

Cook is one of my favorite plays on the slate because he should receive over 25 touches in this game and the Browns effectively ran the ball despite poor quarterback play against the Packers last week. Cook averages 1.2 rushing touchdowns a game against the Packers and managed to get six touchdowns in two games last year.

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