4 NFL FanDuel Stacks for Week 7
Stacks fuel upside in FanDuel contests. To that point, colleague Brandon Gdula took a deep dive into hit rates and correlation for stacks. It's worth a read.
Every week, I'll lay out my four favorite stacks in this space. Here are the stacks I'm honing in on this week.
Burrow headlined my 5 NFL FanDuel Value Plays to Target in Week 7 piece. I advise reading that piece for the full breakdown of why I like Burrow this week. Still, the short version is that the Cincinnati Bengals are passing at the fifth-highest rate over the last three weeks when the scoring margin ranges from trailing by seven points to leading by seven points, per Sharp Football Stats. Additionally, Burrow's responded to the increased duty by averaging 300 passing yards per game with seven touchdowns and three interceptions.
Now, let's look at his elite young receivers. Chase is dominating in his rookie season. According to Pro Football Focus, among receivers targeted at least 15 times, he ranks fifth with 2.96 yards per route run. In addition, according to Sports Info Solutions, he's 12th in intended air yards (655), boasting a 24.1% target share to boot. The dominant rookie has turned his superb underlying numbers into 27 receptions for 553 yards and 5 touchdowns. Despite joining a talented receiving corps, he's immediately usurped the top spot in the pecking order.
Nevertheless, Higgins is an intriguing option as well. The big-bodied wideout is an imposing red-zone option, and Burrow's aware of that. This year, Burrow's aired it out 14 times in the red zone, directing a team-high three to Higgins, resulting in three receptions and two touchdowns. However, he's more than just a touchdown-or-bust receiver. He's caught three or more passes with at least 32 receiving yards in all four games he's played. Sure, those aren't high bars to clear, but averaging seven targets a game isn't something to sneeze at.
Thankfully, the Baltimore Ravens might force the Bengals to maintain their recent uptick in passing. The host AFC North division rivals are 6.5-point favorites, according to our heat map. Because the Bengals have an unappetizing implied total of 20.0 points, I suspect they'll be somewhat overlooked in GPPs. Further, I don't think many gamers will embrace a full three-person Cincinnati stack, enhancing the appeal of rolling the dice on these three.
Obviously, you can't run Jackson and Andrews back with Burrow, Chase, and Higgins. However, I love this side of that contest as well, and I'll use Andrews with the previously discussed three-person stack. In addition, I'll use Chase and/or Higgins as run-back options for a Jackson and Andrews stack.
The expression putting up video-game numbers is overused, but that's precisely what Jackson is doing in 2021. The electrifying dual-threat quarterback ranks 10th in passing yards per game (281.0) and 12th in rushing yards per game (65.3), per Pro Football Reference. As a result, his upside is through the roof.
Additionally, he's providing previously unseen passing production because the offensive coordinator, Greg Roman, has opened up the passing attack this year. When the offensive scoring margin ranged from trailing by seven points to leading by seven points in 2020, the Ravens passed at the lowest rate at only 45 percent. This year, their passing rate has ballooned to 52 percent under those conditions.
I don't fault gamers for having an interest in Marquise Brown or Rashod Bateman (only if Sammy Watkins is out again for the latter) as stacking partners with Jackson. However, I prioritize his superstar tight end.
Andrews has run the fifth-most routes (192) among tight ends. He also shines in other measures compared to his contemporaries at the position, sitting fourth in targets (42), second in receptions (34) and yards per route run (2.44 Y/RR) among tight ends targeted at least 15 times, and tied for first in receiving yards (468).
Jackson and Andrews are legitimate candidates to lead their respective positions in FanDuel points every week. Finally, our projections support using Jackson and Andrews as well, ranking them as QB4 and TE3 with top-five value scores -- a simple measure of points per thousand dollars of salary -- at their positions.
Los Angeles Rams
Stafford faces his former team for the first time. However, I could not care less about any revenge narrative chatter. Instead, I'm drooling at his high-octane offense squaring off with one of the worst defenses in the league. The Los Angeles Rams rank sixth in scoring offense, averaging 29.8 points per game. And, Stafford's had a sizable hand in their excellence, ranking fourth in passing yards per game (306.3), tied for third in passing touchdowns (16), and first in adjusted net yards per pass attempt (9.34 ANY/A), according to Pro Football Reference.
As for the Detroit Lions, their pass defense is trash. They rank as the third-worst pass defense in our power rankings. Further, they're inept smothering big plays. According to Sharp Football Stats, they've surrendered the highest average explosive pass rate (15 percent). Detroit's struggle defending explosive pass plays fuels my interest in D-Jax. According to Sports Info Solutions, his average depth of target of 22.1 yards is the deepest among players with at least 10 targets. Thus, Jackson's built and utilized perfectly to torch the Lions.
Finally, Kupp is the obvious stacking partner with Stafford. The two have been in lockstep this year, resulting in Kupp posting eye-popping numbers. He's third in receiving yards per game (108.8), second in target share (34.0 percent), tied for first in receptions per game (7.7), and first in touchdown receptions (7). Additionally, he's tied for third among receivers with at least 15 targets with 3.20 yards per route run. Kupp's balling out no matter how you slice it.
The Rams have the highest implied total (33.50 points) on the main slate. So, Stafford and Kupp will probably be a popular stacking combination. However, you can differentiate from the pack by tacking D-Jax on for a three-person stack.
Kansas City Chiefs at Tennessee Titans
This isn't the first time I've touted Hardman. I wrote about him as one of five FanDuel value plays to target. Summarizing my analysis there for those who don't want to click the link, he's recorded his two highest yardage totals the last two weeks, totaling 144 yards on 17 targets, and 13 receptions. Sure, he's a distant third in the passing-game hierarchy behind Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Nevertheless, he's carving out a valuable role in an offense with a tantalizing implied total of 31.0 points this week.
His matchup is dreamy. The Tennessee Titans are the 10th-worst pass defense in our power rankings, and they lost rookie cornerback Caleb Farley for the season last week. Further, they're woeful defending receivers. They're tied for the second-most receptions (98) allowed, tied for the most touchdowns allowed (10), and have yielded the most receiving yards (1,418) to wideouts this year, per Pro Football Reference.
On the opposite side of this game stack is King Henry. All the human bulldozer is doing this year is leading the league in rushing attempts (162), rushing yards per game (130.5), rushing touchdowns (10), and yards from scrimmage (921). That's no big deal.
Sarcasm aside, there's a reason his salary is $1,000 more than any other player on the slate. This week, he's positioned to steamroll a Kansas City Chiefs' run defense that ranks as the worst in our power rankings. Therefore, I'm expecting him to eat. Our projections are expecting him to roll too, projecting him to score the most points among running backs and the ninth-most points among all players. As a result, he's one of two non-quarterbacks projected for a top-10 FanDuel point total. So, I'll find the requisite cap space to use Henry in all game types.
Joshua Shepardson is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Joshua Shepardson also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username bchad50. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.