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NFL DFS 2023 Week 9 Thoughts and Notes

Welcome to the Paydirt NFL DFS main slate breakdown! This article will go over some of the most important aspects of the NFL DFS main slate. It'll typically include things like team totals, popular plays, and important stacks. The content of this is mostly geared towards Draftkings but is plenty applicable to Fanduel as well. Likewise, this article goes over the slate based on the range of outcomes models for NFL found here at Paydirt, so if you are interested in the same data we use, grab a subscription today!

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NFL DFS main slate breakdown:

Team stats, rates, and touchdown projections

  • The only game total over 45 points is PHI/DAL at 47, followed by CAR/IND and BAL/SEA both at 44, and nobody else above 41.
  • The highest team totals are BAL (25.25), CLE (25.25), NO (25.25), and PHI (25.00).
  • The highest passing TD expectations are CAR (1.45), GB (1.41), and HOU (1.40).
  • The highest rushing TD expectations are BAL (1.47) and PHI (1.32)
  • The highest dropback volume expectation is WAS at 42.35 and then CAR at a relatively distant 39.54.

Here are the top 10 overall stacks in median projection:

PHI stacks are just so far above the pack in median expectation and upside here. They also have a fine team total and the salary is generally justified here. We have both HOU and CAR as strong values overall, and both DAL and BAL are viable options as well. I do want to show a different view here though as well:

If you sort things by team total, the medians aren’t as strong but the price you are paying for the highest team totals on the slate is really low in comparison to PHI. I didn’t realize it until this morning but both CLE and NO stacks are pretty valuable. The Saints are up against this joke of a Bears squad and CLE has Deshaun Watson back who is probably (??) healthy.

Just based on macro expectations the stacks we should be interested in are PHI, BAL, HOU, CAR, CLE, and NO.

Highest projected ownership

  • Demario Douglas getting steamed heavily this morning and at this point represents a pretty sick fade overall.
  • The expensive chalk here makes a lot of sense, with all of Kamara, Brown, Jacobs, and Thielen all either priced effectively or slightly under where they deserve.
  • Singletary and Hubbard both seem like lame dick plays, but I’m sure one of them will break off a 75 yard receiving TD while rushing for just 32 yards on 12 attempts.

Undervalued options

Last week we saw the expensive RBs as the best spot to gain leverage on the field and while I think we have that same situation this week (fading Singletary/Hubbard) there’s some better leverage offered at TE.

  • While the QB change for ATL should unlock a bit more upside for the team overall, I’m not sure why we would expect the pieces to change much. People are making the assumption that Pitts and Bijan will have more upside, which is true, but probably only within their (hilariously) designed roles. Jonnu Smith has been a legit option all year and will be like 3% owned at a great pricepoint.
  • I don’t know if Bagent is good or not but I’m not sure it matters if Cole Kmet is going to have a 28% targetshare and strong endzone presence. Last week he had 18 fantasy points and was the TE7 on the week but is projected at 3% owned here while basically every other TE on the slate is looking at 10% or more.

Tight End is kind of like DST this week. The margins are all within range of one another and it’s probably just going to be variance dictating who does well. In that case, it’s in your benefit to just play the cheaper, less owned options. Jonnu Smith and Cole Kmet fit that bill here.

Usage and expected fantasy points

A couple notes here on the lower owned options in this list:

  • Puka Nacua has a backup QB.
  • Kenneth Walker saw a significant drop in his snaps and rushingshare last week, likely losing his role.
  • Zack Moss is maybe going to lose his role? Who the fuck knows what’s happening with Jonathan Taylor after last week.
  • Alexander Mattison in a timeshare now with Cam Akers.
  • Jakobi Meyers has a backup QB.

So let’s go ahead and sort this by Ownership now instead:

  • Demario Douglas’ season long expected PPR is pretty low here, but the last two weeks it’s around 11.50, which feels a bit better, but attaching that to Mac Jones feels awful at what might be 30%+ ownership.
  • Devin Singletary’s utilization has actually been pretty strong even with Dameon Pierce active but they still have guys behind him to spell the snaps and RB has been really low equity in this HOU offense all year.
  • Chuba Hubbard has had a pretty good role in terms of rushing attempts but has basically no receiving role, so if you are playing him you are really just making a bet that the Panthers will lead all game.
  • Trey McBride gave me a nice nutshot last week on a full fade, but going from a 50% snapshare to nearly 90% and a 40% TPRR was way out of left field and I stand by that. He’s got another new QB this week against the best defense in the league, both Jonnu Smith and Cole Kmet are better plays overall.

Overall slate notes

  • Main stacks are hard to nail down this week. PHI and HOU make the most sense in terms of target tree, upside, value and all of that but it’s hard to ignore the team totals and prices to stack CLE and NO. Secondary options include BAL, CAR, and TB.
  • Chalk options are mostly fine, but the roster construction we should be focusing on is ignoring the cheap RBs and paying for Kamara and Jacobs where available.
  • Another angle here that I think is important is playing the RBs in the high total teams when you aren’t stacking them. This means if you aren’t playing a PHI stack, you should probably have some Swift, if you aren’t playing BAL, have some Gus Edwards, you get the gist.
  • Thielen still underpriced, but his ownership is getting up there, so it’s not free Paydirt money anymore.
  • Bijan Robinson probably still about the worst possible play on the slate at his ownership.
  • Demario Douglas is an important piece to get right. If you end up with a way low owned stack, go ahead and just eat the chalk, and better yet if you stack NE he should be a priority since most people won’t touch Mac Jones.
  • This is a week with a lot of volatility. Don’t be afraid to get a little weird with stacks while you eat the chalk on the stack one off options.

NFL DFS Cash Game Core:

(Finalized after 12pm EST)

This core of players will help you build a strong foundation in cash games. While it is best to use all these players, it's not a requirement. Generally, you'll want to focus on the QB, RB, and TEs listed.

QB – Jalen Hurts
RB – Devin Singletary
RB – Bijan Robinson
WR – Demario Douglas
WR – A.J. Brown
WR – Terry McLaurin
DST – Giants DST


(Finalized after 10am EST)

This core of players will help you build in priorities to your stacks. Likewise, it's worth noting that the wide receivers and tight ends listed are meant to be in addition to your chosen stacks.

QB – Jalen Hurts, Deshaun Watson, Derek Carr, C.J. Stroud
RB – D'Andre Swift, Gus Edwards, Alvin Kamara, Josh Jacobs, Jerome Ford
WR – Adam Thielen, A.J. Brown, Chris Olave, DJ Moore, Amari Cooper
TE – Jonnu Smith, Cole Kmet, Logan Thomas, David Njoku
DST – Whoever you want

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