The main slate for NFL Week 16 is Sunday this week, not Monday, so don’t forget to get your teams in on time! It’s a 10-game slate this week, with 8 early games and 2 late games, which I can only assume is for more teams to be done early on Christmas Eve. The big story for betting markets, in particular totals, this week is the weather event currently sweeping across the US. With so many of this slate of games set to be adversely affected by inclement weather, stacking players from certain games is certainly a strategy this week. In this 10-game slate, there are only 3 totals set above 45 points, showing low scoring throughout the league is expected for Week 16.

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Patrick Mahomes - $16,660

Mahomes is the obvious choice as QB1 in this slate, averaging 27.9 points per game on the season. This week, he takes on a Seahawks defence that is struggling, ranking 27th in success rate per dropback, 25th in EPA per dropback, and 21st in yards per attempt since week 10. Most concerning about this is that in that time, they’ve only faced one playoff team, and that was the 49ers led by Brock Purdy. I expect Mahomes to slay the Seahawks, and the betting markets agree, setting the Chiefs as 10-point home favourites in a game with a total of 49, the highest on this slate.

Gardner Minshew - $10,040

High risk play here, and one I would only consider to save money. With several games being played in horrible weather, Minshew gets every chance to put up a good score, as the Eagles take on the Cowboys indoors at AT&T Stadium. Minshew comes into a good situation here, with the Eagles boasting an elite offensive line, a solid run game, and 3 tremendous receiving weapons in AJ Brown, DaVonta Smith and Dallas Goedert. Add to this that the Cowboys’ pass defence has been horrible lately, and I can see Minshew being a solid play on in this spot.

Running Back

Derrick Henry - $15,810

After a couple of slow weeks by his lofty standards, King Henry has reeled off consecutive 100-yard, 1 touchdown performances over the past two weeks. This week, he gets a team he has absolutely obliterated in recent seasons, the Houston Texans. Henry has averaged 223 rushing yards per game over his past 4 matchups with the Texans, whilst also scoring 9 touchdowns. The Texans’ defence must have nervous breakdowns every time they see the Titans on their schedule. Another factor which aids the Henry selection this week is the fact Ryan Tannehill is out of this game, with rookie QB Malik Willis starting. This will only increase the amount of touches Henry is given, and a 30+ score is well and truly on.

Christian McCaffrey - $16,910

Since Brock Purdy has taken over at QB and the injury to Elijah Mitchell, CMC has been killing it. Over those 3 weeks, McCaffrey has averaged 30 points per game, with a low of 28.6. He has also averaged the 2nd most snaps of any running back in that time (56.7), whilst also getting the highest number of targets in the passing game. The Commanders are solid against the run, but McCaffrey is matchup proof, and will no doubt score you a good haul of points again in week 16.

Jerrick McKinnon - $13,400

Where has this guy come from? The past two weeks has seen McKinnon become the lead back for the Kansas City Chiefs, playing at least 57% of snaps in both games. He’s not matchup proof, as his rushing statistics are nothing to write home about, it’s in the passing game where he has made his mark over the past two games, averaging 8.5 targets and 91 yards per game in that span. He’s also got the ball into the endzone, with 4 touchdowns over the past two weeks. This week, he will take on a Seahawks defence that is bad against receiving backs, ranking 30th in yards per reception, 29th in DVOA, and 28th in receptions per game allowed to opposing running backs.

Wide Receivers

Justin Jefferson - $19,380

Jefferson is on pace to break the single season receiving yards record, currently held by Calvin Johnson (1964 yards in 2012). Over the past 9 weeks, Jefferson has only been held below 15 points once, and in that time has 4 scores above 30. This week, he gets an indoor game against a Giants defence that has definitely slowed since the beginning of the year. It’s hard to leave Jefferson out of your squad, given his upside and the fact the other high end wide receivers have tough matchups. Expect another 100+ yard touchdown performance from the best wide receiver in the NFL.

Amon Ra St. Brown - $14,470

St. Brown gets a good matchup this week, as he will run most of his routes from the slot. Unless the Panthers put Jaycee Horn on St. Brown, he will matchup against Jeremy Chinn, who has been horrible in coverage this year. St. Brown currently ranks 2nd in target per route run rate, 4th in receptions, 6th in yards per route run, and has the 9th most redzone targets amongst wide receivers. I expect the Lions to get out to a quick lead against the Panthers, before leaning on their run game. We just need St. Brown to get some solid targets early and a possible touchdown, and this selection will be worth the outlay.

DK Metcalf - $12,090

Metcalf has struggled to dominate games this season, however with the loss of Tyler Lockett I expect Geno Smith to look to Metcalf early and often, in a matchup with the Chiefs where the Seahawks figure to be throwing the ball a lot. The Chiefs have been allowing the 5th most fantasy points to wide receivers this season, and they don’t have the physical corners needed to shut Metcalf down. Metcalf’s current numbers (which all should improve without Lockett), are a 26% target share, 36.7% air yard share, and 48.7% endzone target share. Expect a big performance this week from number 14, in what is a crucial game for the Seahawks.

Tight End

Travis Kelce - $17,700

Oh boy, this could be anything for Kelce this week. He is by far and away the top tight end in DFS, averaging 21 points this season, with the next best, Mark Andrews, averaging 13.1. So, Kelce already has that in his favour. But then when you take a look at his matchup this week, that’s when he becomes a definite consideration for your teams. I haven’t taken Kelce once this year, but if I am going to take him, it’ll be this week. The Chiefs take on the Seahawks, who rank 28th in DVOA, 31st in fantasy points per game, and 31st in yards per reception allowed to tight ends this season. After George Kittle’s 2 touchdown performance on National TV last week against the Seahawks, expect Kelce to do everything in his power to beat that effort.

T.J. Hockenson - $10,030

Hockenson isn’t blowing anyone away since coming to the Vikings, but he is as consistent as anyone not named Kelce at the tight end position. Since his trade to Minnesota, T.J. has seen a 20.3% target share, averaged 45.4 yards per game, and has been targeted in the endzone 0.6 times per game. This week, he gets a great matchup against the 32nd ranked team defending against tight ends per DVOA, the Giants. In fact, since week 8 the Giants rank 31st in catch rate, 29th in fantasy points allowed per game, and 24th in yards per reception to opposing tight ends. Low floor, who could have a breakout game for the Vikings here.


San Francisco 49ers - $6,580

The 49ers defence is top 3, if not top 1 in the league. They have been remarkably consistent in scoring for fantasy too, with 5-straight scores of 9 or more. They get a decent matchup this week, as the Washington Commanders come to town. The Commanders currently rank 20th in giveaways, and 7th in sacks allowed per game. Not too shabby, however quarterback Taylor Heineke does like to throw turnover worthy plays, it’s just a matter of whether his turnover luck changes. With the Commanders team total currently lined around 15.5, the market is also expecting a low score from the Commanders.

Houston Texans - $4,140

This one is a bit of a flyer, but the Texans have really been aiming up the past two weeks. The defence and Special Teams have been flying all over the field, and despite playing two great offenses (Cowboys, Chiefs), have managed scores of 5 and 7. They also have 4-straight scores of 5 or more, and for the price, they might be worth a shot. Malik Willis has 3 turnovers in 2 games started, so there’s every chance if he’s forced to throw, the Texans could create a turnover or 2. Not a sure thing, but under-priced for mine on how they’ve been playing lately.

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