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Week 16 NFL DFS Picks: FanDuel Core Lineup Strategy

With all teams completing their bye weeks, we get a full 11-game NFL DFS slate to pick from on Sunday’s main slate. As COVID-19 makes its way around the league, the status of many players is up in the air. We’re here to give you some clarity on which players to target in their new roles. This article will outline the Week 16 NFL DFS picks for core players at each position to hammer into your FanDuel lineups.

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Week 16 NFL DFS Picks for FanDuel


Matthew Stafford ($7,900)

Matthew Stafford is one of the top options on the slate with the elite QBs facing roster issues. With the largest total of the week (49.0 Points), the Rams Vs. Vikings game has the highest chance of a shootout. Stafford has the upside to provide a high return on investment against a Minnesota secondary exploited in DFS all year. With so many discount options at running back this week, you should have no problem reaching that essential Stafford + Cooper Kupp ($9,800) stack. Odell Beckham Jr. ($6,600) and Van Jefferson ($6,300) are also deserving of a look as lesser owned receivers alongside the Rams signal-caller.

Joe Burrow ($7,100)

A quarterback that seems to be flying under the radar in DFS this week is Joe Burrow at a significantly low salary. Burrow and his receivers are coming off of a tough matchup against a top-tier Broncos defense. Drawing a date with a Ravens defense that ranks dead last when defending the pass, Burrow will have a perfect bounce-back opportunity. His low ownership projection makes him a perfect leverage play at his low salary. Ja’Marr Chase ($7,100) and Tee Higgins ($6,500) are both high-upside stacking options against poor Ravens cornerbacks.

Other NFL DFS Options: Justin Herbert ($8,400), Jalen Hurts ($7,700)

Running Backs

Najee Harris ($8,400)

The pool of expensive running backs is looking thin with COVID-19 and injuries taking out so many star players. This leaves Najee Harris and James Robinson ($8,200) as the lone running backs above $8,000. Harris is coming off a terrible outing against the Titans, where he ran the ball 12 times for 18 yards. Still, he should see plenty of opportunities as the Steelers attempt to keep up with the Chiefs. While I don’t recommend paying up for a running back this week, Harris is your guy if you choose to do so.

Miles Sanders ($6,400)

Miles Sanders has finally broken out of his shell, averaging 21 rushing attempts and 125 rushing yards in his last two games. This week he gets a matchup against a Giants run defense that allows the 7th most rushing yards per game. With Daniel Jones out and the Eagles favored by 10 points, Sanders will see a ton of volume once again. With no touchdowns on the year, he is bound to see some positive touchdown regression at some point. At an affordable $6,400, Sanders is one of my favorite mid-tier running backs of the week.

Alexander Mattison ($5,500)

Leading a wave of discount running backs this week, Alexander Mattison is the priority player of the bunch. While he’ll draw much heavier ownership than Ronald Jones ($5,400) and Justin Jackson ($5,400), Mattison holds the highest upside. Even against an above-average run defense, he will easily return value on volume alone with Dalvin Cook out. The shootout potential of the matchup just adds the icing on the top off Mattison’s fantasy appeal.

Other NFL DFS Options: Cordarrelle Patterson ($7,200), Josh Jacobs ($6,800), David Montgomery ($6,600), Ronald Jones II ($5,400), Justin Jackson ($5,400)

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Wide Receivers

Cooper Kupp ($9,800)

Cooper Kupp has been untouchable this season, posting another monster performance last Tuesday against the Seahawks. Odell Beckham Jr.’s arrival hasn’t affected Kupp’s target share in the slightest, seeing 28 targets in his last two games. The matchup can’t get any better against a Vikings defense that’s been downright terrible against receivers. With so many value options on the slate, you should have no problem prioritizing and building your lineup around Kupp.

Tyler Lockett ($7,300)

After a one-week absence, Tyler Lockett will look to pick up where he left off against the Bears. In his last game, he popped off for 142 yards and a score against the Texans. With DK Metcalf in a slump, Lockett has clearly taken the number one role in this Seattle offense. While the Bears allow the 4th least receiving yards per game, they also allow the 2nd most receiving touchdowns to wide receivers. Lockett’s boom or bust tendency makes him worth a look in tournament-style contests this week.

Braxton Berrios ($5,300), Keelan Cole ($5,000), & Denzel Mims ($4,900)

Primary receivers Elijah Moore and Jamison Crowder are both unlikely to suit up this week for the Jets. This frees up targets for the three receivers listed above in a solid matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars. This Jets-Jaguars game will be a tough one to watch but the poor defensive play could create a solid fantasy atmosphere. In terms of which Jets receiver will do the best, your guess is as good as mine. Berrios will likely replace Crowder’s role in the slot, with Mims and Cole manning the outside. Any one of these receivers deserves consideration as a punt play at basically minimum salary.

Other NFL DFS Options: Tyreek Hill ($8,700), Ja’Marr Chase ($7,100), Antonio Brown ($7,000), Tee Higgins ($6,500), Amon Ra St. Brown ($6,500)

Tight Ends

Rob Gronkowski ($6,700)

Rob Gronkowski should see an uptick in usage this week with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin both out. Even in a tough matchup against the Panthers, Tom Brady will likely attempt 40+ passes in this game. With Gronkowski and Antonio Brown as the main targets, both are viable plays on FanDuel. As the tight end position is especially thin on the slate, Gronkowski may be the safest option of the bunch.

Kyle Pitts ($5,900)

I just can’t bring myself to give up on Kyle Pitts just yet. His struggles continue as he has failed to score a touchdown since Pitts has had one of the toughest schedules for a tight end this season and finally gets an opportunity against a soft Lions defense. He lines up in the slot over 60% of the time, a position the Lions have struggled to defend against. I can’t see anyone on this Detroit defense keeping up with him, it’s just a matter of if Matt Ryan can get him the ball.

Other NFL DFS Options: Travis Kelce ($7,800), Dallas Goedert ($5,900)

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