These contests are intended to be fun as you’re watching the game. It’s incredibly difficult to get a real edge as there are so few options and in MME contests there are often many duplicate lineups. One play or one penalty can change the entire outcome of the game.
This article is going to have a heavy DraftKings lean simply because the decision making process is more interesting with the Captain having a salary premium to correspond with the scoring premium. On FanDuel, the pricing is the same for both MVP and flex, so just play either a quarterback or running back in that spot. There are scenarios where a wide receiver can pay off, but it’s difficult with it being the 0.5 per reception.
This is a bit of a disaster of a game this week. The Browns are incredibly thin due to injury, while the Broncos are a team that spread the ball around to a lot of different players that it is going to make it a tough slate. From a pricing perspective, the injuries were announced early enough that it really has not created any value, and in fact has done the opposite which is having you to consider players at prices that you otherwise would not consider.
Be careful as while we’ve largely nailed the captains the last few weeks in this article, this week is entirely a crap shoot. This game could be a low scoring ugly contest. Overall a difficult slate this week, but let’s get into it.
- Courtland Sutton
- D’Ernest Johnson
- Donovan Peoples-Jones
- Teddy Bridgewater
- Tim Patrick
- Jarvis Landry
- Denver Defense
- David Njoku
Case Keenum- Flex
Case Keenum is starting this week in place of Baker Mayfield who is dealing with a torn labrum in his non-throwing shoulder. The last time we have seen Keenum start a game was in Washington in 2019. Keenum is the definition of a game manager, which typically in fantasy we avoid, but in a Showdown slate, he is an excellent flex option to stack with one of the wide receivers in Cleveland as the captain or to take both quarterbacks
D’Ernest Johnson- Captain or Flex
D’Ernest Johnson will take the lead role this week due to both Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt being out. Johnson only has three carries on the season, but has shown promise in an expanded role in the past as in his one game with 10 or more carries he had a great game against Dallas rushing for 95 yards on 13 carries. The Broncos defense is much better than the 2020 Dallas defense, and the Browns have limited offensive weapons, but Johnson should see 13+ touches this week and we can’t confidently say that about any other running back in this game.
Demetric Felton- Flex
Demetric Felton is more intriguing just due to his pass catching upside. The rookie coming out of UCLA caught 55 passes as a wide receiver his junior season before converting to a running back for his senior season. Expect the Browns to utilize him in a similar way that Chris Thompson was used in 2019 where Thompson had 42 receptions in 11 games. The Browns are likely going to have limited receivers in this game as Odell Beckham Jr looks like he will miss, while Jarvis Landry looks like he won’t be 100%. Felton could play a significant role in this game both out of the backfield and out of the slot.
Donovan Peoples-Jones- Captain only
The Browns are looking like they will be without Odell Beckham Jr this week and Jarvis Landry is questionable to play as he is still on IR as of the time of writing this. What this likely means is that the Browns are going to be extremely limited this week. Peoples-Jones is the big play receiver for the Browns as he is coming off of a 4 catch, 101 yard performance with 2 touchdowns last week. The problem is that with a big play wide receiver comes with volatility and Peoples-Jones definitely carries that as he has just 14 targets on the season (catching 13 of them). There should be some regression coming for him, but he should see an uptick in volume with no Odell Beckham Jr and a very compromised rushing attack.
Jarvis Landry- Captain or Flex
The Browns are going to rely on short passes due to the game manager style of Case Keenum along with the incredibly banged up offensive line as the Browns are missing both tackles in this game. If Jarvis Landry plays this week, expect him to see a heavy target share based on pure necessity as he is the only consistent possession receiver that the Browns have. The price is a good one at just $6,600, but the risk is absolutely there as we don’t know how many snaps Landry is going to take, or if this is a desperation move by the Browns to play him on a week where they have so many players out. He was close to playing on Sunday, so it would appear that he should be good to go, but you never know how returns from injury will go.
Anthony Schwartz- Flex- The Browns are trying to find ways to incorporate the speedster into their offense, but so far have been struggling. With a lack of offensive weapons this week, they could scheme some plays to try to get Schwartz in space this week.
David Njoku- Captain only- High upside player, but very low floor. Priced up at $5,400. Probably best to be a captain and hope to have a big game as we saw against the Chargers earlier this season in which he had 141 yards on 7 receptions
Teddy Bridgewater- Decent Captain or Great Flex
Teddy Bridgewater has been much better this season than anticipated. Labeled as a game manager, Bridgewater has attempting to shed that label as he is averaging 290 yards passing per game excluding the game against Las Vegas in which he was injured. The one thing that we haven’t seen from Bridgewater this year is his rushing upside as he ran for 5 touchdowns last season, but has yet to find the end zone on the ground so far this year.
The matchup on paper is a somewhat difficult one for the Broncos, but the Browns have struggled mightily against the pass the last two weeks allowing 8 passing touchdowns and an average of 314 passing yards per game. The floor that Bridgewater brings should force him to be in your flex position this week, and you could take a chance with a captain spot if he can distribute the ball enough or potentially run in a touchdown.
Fringe flex play at best, likely fade
Melvin Gordon III and Javonte Williams so far this season have been almost identical statistically. Both Gordon and Williams are low-upside running backs in this offense as both players are averaging less than 10 carries per game over the last three weeks. The reality is that at the price that they are at $7,400 for Gordon and $7,000 for Williams, it is too high without the upside that you are looking for in a Showdown slate combined with the lack of floor due to the limited touches.
The Browns defense has been one of the best against the run this season allowing just 70 yards per game as they have shut down the likes of Dalvin Cook, David Montgomery, Austin Ekeler (made it up through touchdowns), and Clyde Edwards-Helaire. You’re essentially hoping that one of the players finds the end zone, so if you want to take a chance on one of the players, go with Gordon as he has slightly more red zone carries than Williams, but like almost every other stat they are extremely close (14 to 12)
Wide Receiver/Tight End
Courtland Sutton- Great Captain/Flex
Courtland Sutton should be in line for a big game this week. The Browns have been abysmal against number one receivers for opposing teams. On the season, the Browns have allowed 40.1 (Hill), 22.8 (Cooks), 20.4 (Jefferson), 39.5 (Mike Williams), and 20.5 (Hopkins). Courtland Sutton is coming off of back to back games in which he just took over as he had 94 yards and 120 yards in those two contests scoring a touchdown in both games. He will be heavily relied upon this season with the loss of Jerry Jeudy earlier in the year.
Tim Patrick- Captain/Flex
Tim Patrick has turned into a nice complimentary receiver for the Broncos this season providing a nice balance of floor and ceiling as he has averaged 57 yards per game with 3 touchdowns on the year. Patrick is the type of receiver the Browns have had issues with at times this year as Patrick will likely see a lot of Greedy Williams in this game who primarily defended A.J. Green last week allowing Green to have a big game with 71 yards and a touchdown. Patrick is second on the Broncos in red zone targets behind Sutton, but is in a great spot this week to potentially score a touchdown in this game.
Noah Fant- Flex- Solid flex play, nothing that exciting about Fant this week, but he is coming off of a great performance last week.
|Position||Name||Salary||Projection||H-Value||Point/$||Captain or Flex|
|QB||Teddy Bridgewater||11000||17.1||24.8||1.6||Captain Only|
|WR||Courtland Sutton||10000||16.1||24.5||1.6||Flex Only|
|RB||Melvin Gordon III III||7400||11.9||19.8||1.6|