There are only 4 QB’s on this slate unless you are trying to get frisky with a Taysom Hill trick play receiving TD and kick return touchdown play. All four of these guys are phenomenal and in similar spots. The spread on both games is around 3, and the totals are very similar. I do have a game preference though. I think that the Chiefs and Patriots are more likely to throw more often. Both teams best weapon is putting the ball in the air, where the Rams and Saints both play games that are run heavy. I do not think we see a significantly lower scoring game in New Orleans, but if any of these teams dedicate their offensive scheme to running the ball, it will hurt both QBs in that particular game because it just wastes more time. I think that both the Rams and Saints are more likely to fall in love with their running game than either the Chiefs or the Patriots. Mahomes is flashier and has a higher upside with his rushing and big-play ability, but he will also be owned more than Brady. I think Tom Brady will be my highest leverage play at the position this week. I do like Brees much more than Goff in the first game because of his efficiency throwing in the red zone and the Rams’ tendency to run on the goal line.
Todd Gurley is the top option on every site, but I am not sure that I love Gurley in this spot. We saw C.J. Anderson play a lot in their last game and while I do not expect that to continue, it is still a concern. Also, the Saints’ defense is really good at stopping the run. I think that Gurley is going to be touchdown dependent on this slate with so many good options. With Anderson still in the mix, I think I will be under the field on Gurley.
My favorite back on the slate, especially on PPR sites is James White. White saw 17 targets last game, and I truly think that the number will be similar to that this time around. These passes are often behind the line of scrimmage and produce an extremely high completion rate, making his floor incredible. I think that White has the best floor out of any RB on PPR sites because he doesn’t even need to score to really produce.
Michael Thomas and Tyreek Hill are two of my favorite plays on the entire slate. In their first matchup, Michael Thomas went for 12 catches and 211 yards when the Rams were without Aqib Talib. This addition is concerning, but I think it will be a non-issue for Thomas. Talib doesn’t shadow receivers and he doesn’t travel into the slot, where Thomas should run most of his routes with Keith Kirkwood out. Thomas is incredibly reliable, and I love him here.
I know that Belichick is known for taking away the other team’s top option. This is something that everyone talks about, but not a lot of people understand. In their last 3 meetings, this focus has clearly been on Travis Kelce. They then put Stephon Gilmore, their best corner, on Sammy Watkins. I THINK that the Patriots are going to stick with this strategy. Why? It fits the scheme. When the Patriots double team Kelce, he doesn’t get open nearly as much as he normally does. He struggles. If they put a ton of energy into focusing Tyreek Hill, I think they understand that he can burn them anyways. There is no reason to waste extra defenders from trying to stop the big plays because they may happen anyways. They know if they focus on Travis Kelce, he will not beat them regularly. One broken play for Hill for a big TD and then not focusing on Kelce will just put them in even more of a hole. Look for the Patriots to take away everything besides Hill and then attempt to limit the massive plays.
Chris Hogan is a dart throw that used to catch touchdowns but seemingly is invisible on the field. Hogan runs a route on basically every play, but they just don’t seem to look at him. In the past 2 games, Hogan has seen 17 targets. If this continues, I think Hogan can catch a TD or two and win you a GPP.