Yahoo! Single-Game DFS Breakdown: Lions at Packers

Sep 20, 2021
Yahoo! Single-Game DFS Breakdown: Lions at Packers

Yahoo! is expanding their daily fantasy football options with a single-game option. Yahoo! has a roster construction of one ‘Superstar’ that scores at 1.5 times, while the remaining four roster spots accumulate points at the normal rate. This is half-point PPR scoring and the ‘Superstar’ pricing does not change from the Utility. All scoring and rules can be found here.

Week 2 ends with the Green Bay Packers hosting the Detroit Lions. The Packers look to rebound from Week 1’s molly-whopping from the New Orleans Saints in Jacksonville, while Detroit hopes to erase the sting of falling short at home to the heavily-favored San Francisco 49ers.

It is vital to remember that single-game slates are not simply a “max salary, play as many big names as possible, and submit” format, especially in larger tournament fields. We need to identify players that can be pieces in their offense’s success, whether in the lead or trailing, as well as the players that could be focal points in a neutral game script. The ability to then take those players and identify which will succeed in the single-game format will put us in a better position to win.

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More Single-Game Breakdowns: FanDuel/DraftKings

Vegas Total and Spread

Green Bay is a 12-point home favorite with an Over/Under of 49. The Packers have an implied team total of 31 points, while the Lions implied team total is 18.

Potential Game Flow Scenarios

The Packers being nearly two-touchdown favorites and having an implied team total over 30 points is a damning indictment of the Lions despite almost pulling off the home upset Week 1. What we saw in Week 1 from the Packers is more than likely rust, but it is also a clue into what it may take for Aaron Rodgers ($34) and company to get going. The offense had few reps together outside of practice and went against a displaced Saints team looking to win in the face of adversity. The Lions defense is not the Saints and Aaron Rodgers is better than Jameis Winston despite the stat lines.

Green Bay’s running game cannot be snuffed out if the Packers are to win and control the game. Aaron Jones ($31) will be heavily dependent on game script with A.J. Dillon ($15) getting his series or two sprinkled in.

A strong Jones game can take away from the Rodgers-Davante Adams ($37) connection. Over the past two seasons, Jones has a correlation of –0.35 in home games with Rodgers and Adams. That is based on half-PPR with no bonuses like Yahoo! DFS. This matters because the Lions defense ($10) entered 2021 as the worst defense against quarterbacks, running backs, and team offense using 4for4’s schedule-adjusted positional defensive rankings (aFPA). Detroit’s defense is not very good against opposing receivers as well, ranking 28th. Both phases of the Packers offense can flex their muscles and score, but it is likely someone gets left out of the feeding frenzy.

Green Bay’s passing offense continues to show a lack of depth and beyond Adams and Jones, only Robert Tonyan ($16) has shown a level of consistency. Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($18) saw seven targets in Week 1 but only converted them into three receptions and 17 yards. MVS saw 47.1% of the team’s air yards and with the Lions' secondary depending on three rookies in nickel and dime coverages, there is room for conversion on deep passes.

When allowed to stretch out their legs, the Lions' offense can click but is dependent on short-to-intermediate passes to T.J. Hockenson ($20), D’Andre Swift ($22), and Jamaal Williams ($16). Each collected eight receptions in what was mainly garbage time Week 1. The Lions would benefit most from featuring their two backs again this week with the Packers struggling against opposing backs (27th in half-PPR aFPA). Detroit is also without their top wideout Tyrell Williams (concussion) and will lean on Quintez Cephus ($11), Kalif Raymond ($10, questionable – thigh), and rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown ($10). Based on those names, the running back duo and Hockenson will see a lot of work. The Packers defense ($14) can also take out any of those wide receivers with Jaire Alexander, one of the best cornerbacks in football. It is more realistic Alexander sees whoever lines up against him each snap.

Hockenson can exploit a weak linebacking corps if that is how Green Bay chooses to attack him. Adam Trautman and Juwan Johnson saw nine targets and combined for 39 yards and two touchdowns. If Jameis Winston knew to target the second level of the Packers, you can bet Jared Goff ($25) will as a quarterback who is inclined to throw the ball closer to the line of scrimmage; Goff had 6.2 Intended Air Yards Per Pass Attempt (IAY/PA) in 2020 and averaged 6.0 Week 1. Since 2018, Goff’s IAY/PA has decreased each season.

A quicker passing game also limits the Packers pass rush which is without its best rusher Za’Darius Smith.

Close, low-scoring game

Close, high-scoring game

Blowout for home team

Blowout for away team

Cheap/Unique Stacking Option

Traditional stacks such as QB/WR1 or WR2, QB/TE, and RB/DEF are stacks seen used in winning lineups. The obvious choice is not always the winning choice. Below is a cheap stack with at least one unique quality that could break the slate.

Randall Cobb ($15) and Amon-Ra St. Brown ($10)

This stack is betting on short passes from both quarterbacks. Cobb and Brown started for their respective teams in the slot receiver role and were limited in their usage due to game script. Brown’s 12.8-yard average target depth (aDOT) was the lowest of the three Lions receivers who finished the game but still exceptional for a negative game script. If the Lions go down early Brown looks to be the non-tight end safety valve in the passing game.

Low-Priced Volatile Plays

Quintez Cephus ($11)

Cephus led the Lions in aDOT and Air Yards in Week 1 but did not produce until CB Jason Verrett was hurt for the 49ers. Any time spent opposite Alexander is bad news for Cephus and an attempt to line him opposite Packers CB Kevin King would give him a better chance of succeeding. The loss of Smith up front helps the Lions pass protection and can allow time for Cephus to get open.

Packers Defense ($14)

Oddsmakers may be predicting a convincing Packers win, but considering the Packers got zero pressure on Winston Week 1 and allowed 38 points is concerning. The Lions' offensive line is not as good as New Orleans’s but deserves praise for surviving against San Francisco’s front four.

Trinity Benson ($10)

Benson was acquired shortly before the regular season and surprised in Week 1 with six targets, three catches, and 19 yards. The loss of Williams opens the door for Benson in three wide receiver sets and benefits most from a negative game script.

Superstar Picks

Aaron Jones ($31)

Jones’s usage makes him one of the best, if not obvious plays. He is game script independent and saw 39 total touches in two games against the Lions last season.

Davante Adams ($37)

Adams had the lowest aDOT among Packers receivers and tied for the team lead in targets with MVS. He also played 70% of snaps despite the blowout last week. The Rodgers-Adams connection may be unmatched in terms of chemistry between a QB and WR and after last week’s dud, Rodgers will be targeting Adams heavily against an unproven cornerback group.

D’Andre Swift ($22)

Swift is also game script independent. He is a better pass-catcher out of the backfield than Jamaal Williams and is arguably the most talented offensive player on Detroit. His rostership may be down after battling a groin injury all week, but he practiced in full Saturday and will be the most leaned-on player for the Lions.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($18)

Aaron Rodgers trusted MVS in Week 1 and showed a willingness to target him towards the end of 2020. The deep shots will be there for the two to take. In last season’s ‘Aaron Jones’ game Week 2 against Detroit, MVS scored more fantasy points than Davante Adams. Adams was the focal point in Week 14 versus the Lions (7-114-1) but MVS finished with a strong six catches for 85 yards and a score. Expect coverage to roll Adams’ way and a lot of one-on-one deep for Valdes-Scantling.

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