NFL Week 16 Daily Fantasy Targets (12/22/16)
Cam Newton's game came around on Monday against the Redskins defense despite not gaining a single yard on the ground. This week he'll face a similarly bad defense in the Falcons. The Falcons defense will be even slower off of their turf field and the weather looks good in Carolina this week. Expect Cam to make up with some yardage on the ground as the Falcons front seven is not only undersized but smaller and slower than Cam.
One aspect of going winless is very few players will be picked in DFS. Robert Griffin may be worth the shot this week. The Browns are giving Griffin a little more leash than expected. He's attempted 28 passes in his two games since returning along with rushing 15 times in those games. He's also been their biggest, or only, threat in the red zone where he's scored twice on the ground. The Brown's biggest issue has been the inability to protect the quarterback. Luckily, the Chargers only sack the quarterback 4.6% of the time for second worst in the league. Griffin, for once, should have some more time to throw or find room to run.
There are three players in the NFL that have attempted more than 200 rushing attempts and boast over five yards per carry. Jordan Howard is one of them. He'll go against the Redskins front seven this week who have allowed 4.5 yards per carry (sixth worst in the NFL). Now that Howard is getting the large share of the workload, including in the passing game, him and the Bears should have plenty of chances to score.
Todd Gurley's price isn't necessarily cheap, but his struggles will make him low-owned. Gurley hasn't gotten a ton of carries this year. However, that is mostly due to the low snap count in total by the Rams who struggle to gain even ten yards. That could change this week since going run-heavy against the Niners defense seems to be the key. The Niners have allowed five yards per carry this season. They've essentially turned the average running back into Ezekiel Elliott. Even the Rams offensive line can push around San Francisco's defense this week.
Julian Edelman has been receiving an insane amount of targets from the best quarterback in the league and he still isn't getting a ton of attention. As Gronkowski and Amendola have been on and off the injury list in the last few weeks, Edelman has gotten all of the attention. In the last five games, Edelman has received double-digit targets in all of them. The yardage isn't as high as you'd expect, but if he keeps getting over ten targets per game, he's the easiest cash play on the board.
Given his price and potential changes in the Texans offense with Tom Savage under center, Hopkins makes a fine tournament play this week. Savage attempted 36 passes last week in about one half of football. A large share of those targets went to Hopkins; he received 17 in total. Houston was trailing the entire game so it would be surprising to see conservative Bill O'Brien completely change his game plan just because of Savage. Nonetheless, Savage will be much more likely to throw the ball down the field.
Kyle Rudolph has been flying under the radar as of late. After a big downswing in the middle of the season, Rudolph has reemerged as a threat for Sam Bradford. Rudolph has gotten at least eight targets in all of the last four games and has caught 27 of those passes. He'll face the Packers secondary that has possibly become the worst in the NFL allowing 8.1 yards per attempt.
You may not even know who A.J. Derby plays for, but he's worth the long shot this week if he plays. Derby and Virgil Green are both undergoing concussion symptoms at the moment. However, Derby has been getting a little bit of attention in Denver's passing game. Siemian has relied heavily on Thomas and Sanders through the air this year. As teams have caught on, he'll need to spread the ball around a bit more. Derby has caught nine of his eleven targets in the last two weeks which is well worth his price tag, especially if he can get lucky in the red zone against the Chiefs.