Week 16 Breakout Player Model: Top Contrarian NFL DFS Plays

Dec 23, 2022
Week 16 DFS Breakout Model: Top Contrarian Plays

One of the biggest advantages you can deploy in daily fantasy is buying low on a player who has fallen out of favor with the rest of the field but is set up for a smash week. The 4for4 Player Stat Explorer is home to a model that compares a fantasy player's actual fantasy output with their expected fantasy output, based on their usage and historical data. The goal is to highlight players that have had the requisite usage (snaps, targets, air yards, etc) to produce big fantasy outcomes, but due to the natural variance of the sport have yet to do so. Many times, those underperforming players will be low-owned in DFS and make for fantastic contrarian plays, which this article will highlight.

More Week 16 DFS Strategy: Cash Game Breakdown | GPP Breakdown | Daigle’s Top Values and Picks | WR/CB Matchups

Fantasy Points Over Expectation, Weeks 12–15
Player Team Pos Fantasy PPG Exp Fantasy PPG Fantasy PPG Over Exp.
Nico Collins HOU WR 11.5 21.1 -9.7
Kyle Allen HOU QB 10.5 18.0 -7.5
Drake London ATL WR 11.1 18.1 -7.0
Amari Cooper CLE WR 10.1 16.6 -6.5
Robert Woods TEN WR 4.6 10.8 -6.2
Nelson Agholor NE WR 7.9 13.8 -5.8
Mark Andrews BAL TE 7.1 12.6 -5.6
Racey McMath TEN WR 0.6 5.7 -5.1
TJ Hockenson MIN TE 10.0 15.1 -5.1
DAndre Swift DET RB 12.3 16.9 -4.6
Marcus Mariota ATL QB 13.1 17.7 -4.6
DOnta Foreman CAR RB 6.9 11.2 -4.3
Hunter Renfrow LV WR 2.4 6.5 -4.1
Hayden Hurst CIN TE 7.5 11.5 -4.0
Diontae Johnson PIT WR 13.8 17.7 -3.9
Tommy Tremble CAR TE 1.7 5.6 -3.9
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine TEN WR 5.6 9.4 -3.8
Olamide Zaccheaus ATL WR 5.8 9.5 -3.7
Cordarrelle Patterson ATL RB 9.4 13.1 -3.7
Michael Gallup DAL WR 9.2 12.5 -3.3
Davante Adams LV WR 17.3 20.6 -3.3
Stefon Diggs BUF WR 15.3 18.6 -3.3
Deebo Samuel SF WR 11.7 14.9 -3.3
Chase Claypool CHI WR 7.0 10.2 -3.2
Desmond Ridder ATL QB 7.7 10.9 -3.2
Chris Moore HOU WR 9.1 12.3 -3.2
Tyquan Thornton NE WR 5.0 8.2 -3.2
Logan Thomas WAS TE 2.8 5.9 -3.2

WR Drake London, Falcons ($6,400 FD/$4,800 DK)

Drake London is rocking a massive 37% target share over the last three weeks which continued despite the quarterback change to Desmond Ridder. He racked up 7/70 last week and now gets a matchup against the Ravens secondary. Though they've improved as the year has progressed, London can still win his individual matchup on the outside. Last week he saw 11 targets out of 26 attempts from Ridder. He's got a 40% air yards share and a 10.5-yard average target depth. The combination of current salary and projected usage makes him a really intriguing tournament flier on Saturday.

RB D'Andre Swift, Lions ($6,800 FD/$5,500 DK)

Though Swift remains in a timeshare his usage is still very good for his price on both sites. He saw 17 opportunities last week which included nine targets. Over the last month, he's averaged 15 opportunities. Those high-value touches can swing a player's fantasy points wildly because they have the ability to result in six points. The Panthers rate out 20th in aFPA against running backs so the Lions as a whole will have scoring opportunities. He's going to need variance to swing in his favor in terms of touchdowns. The key for me here with Swift is that he'll be severely under-rostered and we know that he has the ability to have big games. We also know he is currently seeing the usage that can lead to those big games.

TE T.J. Hockenson, Vikings ($6,000 FD/$4,900 DK)

Hockenson has been on this Breakout Model for a while and it makes all the sense in the world. He's being used like an elite tight end. Last week he racked up nine targets in the wild comeback against the Colts. He's also garnered at least eight targets in five of his last seven games. He plays nearly every snap as well. He's still a pretty young and athletic receiver—the case that he may have lost doesn't seem logical. Each week I keep looking at his usage and wondering how he hasn't had a spike week since joining the Vikings. The Giants have been allowing fantasy points to tight ends and this is one of the only main slate games that weather isn't going to impact. There isn't a better spot for Hock to finally hit his ceiling.

WR Nelson Agholor, Jaguars ($5,300 FD/$3,300 DK)

Agholor was semi-chalk last week as Jakobi Meyers surprise active status pushed him from being the most rostered receiver on the slate to just another 10% owned receiver. However, I think everyone jumps off this week and it's probably a good idea to stay on. We always hear about the "flop lag" from DFS plays in which the idea behind the play is correct and it works out a week after everyone identifies the player as a solid play.

The Bengals should be able to push the Patriots into a few more pass attempts than most opponents they'll play this year. Devante Parker still hasn't practiced. And despite only catching one ball for three yards last week, Agholor saw six targets, two of which were close to being huge chunk plays and even touchdowns. I like him as a bring-back on Bengals stacks if you're using them.

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