Fantasy Football Playoffs: Wild Card Round DFS plays and sleepers

Who is DFS pro Mike McClure putting in his optimal NFL DFS lineup on Wild Card Weekend? Visit SportsLine now to see the full optimal tournament lineups for the NFL playoffs this weekend from a professional DFS player who has almost $2 million in career winnings, and find out.

Are we ever really done with Fantasy Football?

Of course we're not. Would you even be reading this if you were?!

While our seasonal leagues have crowned a champion, our desire to win remains strong. And the best way we can feed that desire is with Daily Fantasy.

With four fun playoff games this weekend, let's look at the daily slate and find some gems to fill our lineups with winners.

Note: Throughout the story I'll mention "value." When a player is a good value, he'll give you three times as many points at one-thousandth of his price. For example, a player worth $5,000 would offer value if he accrued 15 points.

Quarterbacks

Top Play

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Andrew Luck IND • QB • 12
CMP%67.3
YDs4593
TD39
INT15
YD/Att7.19

Luck has posted two huge numbers against the Texans this year — at least 399 passing yards and two scores in each game. Chances are the Colts will focus on exploiting the Houston secondary while protecting Luck behind a strong O-line, so expect a very good performance from Luck in his first postseason matchup since January of 2015.

The problem is that Luck will be a very popular pick. If you're setting a tournament lineup, you will either have to accept sharing him with a ton of other people or find an alternative.

Next Best

  • Deshaun Watson, HOU: Hey, if Luck's going to put up points, the Texans have to answer. Watson has at least 38 pass attempts in his meetings with Indy along with a minimum of 35 rush yards. The penalty for this Luck alternative is paying up for him — he's the most expensive quarterback on the slate.
  • Russell Wilson, SEA: Wilson's never played great against the Cowboys but does have a penchant for stepping it up in the playoffs. He's particularly a good bargain on DraftKings, priced a full $1,000 less than Watson (Saturday, 8:15 p.m. ET, available on fuboTV).
  • Lamar Jackson, BAL: He's a better deal at DraftKings ($5,800, fifth-most expensive) than FanDuel ($8,200, second-most expensive) but he should continue to whip the Chargers with his legs. L.A. is missing three starters from its front seven.

Sleeper

  • Dak Prescott, DAL: The seventh-most expensive quarterback on the slate, Prescott has produced palatable numbers in nine of his last 11 games. His offensive line should be fine and the Seahawks' top cornerback, Shaquill Griffin, won't play at 100 percent.

Running backs

Top Play

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Chris Carson SEA • RB • 32
Att247
Yds1151
TD9
FL2

He's not cheap — he's at his most expensive price point of the year on both sides ($7,500 on FanDuel, $6,800 on DraftKings). However, he's notched over 110 rush yards in three straight and a touchdown in four straight. The Cowboys have given up five rushing touchdowns to running backs in their last three, with 4.5 yards per carry allowed.

Next Best

  • Jordan Howard, CHI: Howard won't catch many passes but his role is rock solid in Chicago's backfield. He's been a nice investment in his last three games, each with a minimum of 15 touches and at least one score and 70 total yards. The Eagles' run defense is good but if the Bears defense has its way, Howard should see another solid game. He's considerably cheaper on DraftKings ($4,600) than FanDuel ($7,600).
  • Lamar Miller, HOU: Based on how he's been playing lately, Miller should return good value. He's scored in three of his last five, including one against the Colts in Week 14, with at least 15 touches in four of six. He's the sixth-most expensive back on DraftKings at $4,900 but slots in at 10th on FanDuel ($6,400).
  • Ezekiel Elliott, DAL: Elliott costs more on DraftKings ($9,000) than FanDuel ($8,800) and hasn't quite returned value in two of his last three straight games. However, he has solidly delivered good enough numbers to help give your team a base in cash games. It would be contrarian to fade Elliott in GPPs. Seattle's defense against ball-carriers has improved recently thanks to the return of linebacker K.J. Wright.

Sleeper

  • Kenneth Dixon, BAL: Gus Edwards isn't the only guy making plays in the Ravens backfield lately. Just last week, Dixon had six runs of seven-plus yards (including four 10-plus-yard carries) to Edwards' three. The week before he had three explosive plays to Edwards' four. And very quietly, Dixon had more snaps than Edwards in Weeks 15 and 16 and as many carries as Edwards in Week 17. Dixon is cheaper than Edwards on both sites, making him a fine punt play against a Chargers defense that will play without linebacker Jatavis Brown after losing two other quality run-stoppers in recent weeks.

Wide receivers

Top Play

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T.Y. Hilton IND • WR • 13
TAR120
REC76
REC YDs1270
REC TD6

Both he and DeAndre Hopkins should light up the scoreboard in their Saturday showdown at Houston. Hilton's track record at the Texans (41-933-7 in seven games) is enough to make you want him in your lineup but seeing him priced $1,100 less than Hopkins on FanDuel and $900 less on DraftKings makes him even more appealing. He'll be very popular but will definitely pad your score.

Next Best

  • DeAndre Hopkins, HOU: Hopkins' salary hasn't been enough of a deterrent to step away from him as he's been useful for DFS points in each of his last three games. He also tore through the Colts in Week 4 before a muted outing in Week 14 despite 10 targets. Ideally, you'll find a way to get him and Hilton into your cash game lineups.
  • Alshon Jeffery, PHI: A much better option on DraftKings ($5,900) than FanDuel ($7,400), Jeffery has either scored or topped 100 yards in three of his last four, including two of three with Nick Foles. The expectation is that the Bears' impossible run defense puts Philadelphia in a pass-heavy mode, and the Bears are a little thin in their secondary.
  • Amari Cooper, DAL: We've seen Cooper disappear over the last three weeks with less than 40 touchdown-less yards per game, but it's hard to buy into him staying this ineffective in a playoff game. Besides, he's still a huge part of what Dallas does (11 targets last week). His bargain power is on FanDuel ($6,700) compared to DraftKings ($7,500).

Sleepers

  • Dontrelle Inman, IND: Inman has stepped up with touchdowns in each of his last two, working as the No. 2 receiver for the Colts. Houston's secondary is a weak spot that Luck should attack, and Inman is sure to never see double coverage so long as Hilton (and Eric Ebron) are on the field. He's priced attractively at $5,500 on FanDuel and $4,300 on DraftKings.
  • Nelson Agholor, PHI: Agholor has come alive in the last two weeks (10-156-3), recapturing a role in the Philly offense when Foles has needed him the most. He's been particularly great as a big-play threat, so expect him to continue getting deep targets with the Eagles trailing. While FanDuel has caught up to Agholor ($6,400), DraftKings apparently didn't pay attention to his improvement ($3,800).
  • Cole Beasley, DAL: With a minimum of five receptions for 50 yards in his last two games, and a touchdown last week, Beasley has emerged in the Cowboys offense again. It makes Beasley a must-use on DraftKings ($3$500) while his price is more prohibitive on FanDuel ($5,400).

Tight ends

Top Play

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Eric Ebron IND • TE • 85
TAR110
REC66
REC YDs750
REC TD13
FL1

Ebron might be the only play at tight end. Not only did he score and get at least four grabs for 40 yards in each game against the Texans this season, but he's been a touchdown scorer for pretty much every game this season and has been a target hog in five of his last six. The Texans will have a hard time covering him in the red zone.

Sleepers

Mark Andrews, BAL: While many people who take the tight-end cheapskate route will target Blake Jarwin fresh off a three-score game, Andrews has a nice matchup against the Chargers and leads the Ravens tight ends in targets over the last four weeks. He only costs $100 more on FanDuel and $200 more on DraftKings than Jarwin.

Hunter Henry, LAC: Naturally this is contingent on Henry being left off of the Bolts' injury report. Priced at the bottom-barrel price of $2,500 on DraftKings and cheaply at $4,900 on FanDuel, Henry is a "what the heck" punt play that gives you enough cash to stash studs at other positions.

DSTs

Top Play

Ravens DST: They're not the most expensive DST and they'll face a Chargers offense they humbled in L.A. two weeks ago. The Chargers offense has scored three touchdowns in the past two weeks. Baltimore allowed 17.3 points per game at home during the regular season.

Sleeper

Colts DST: Priced cheaply ($2,300 at DraftKings, $3,700 at FanDuel), the unit should easily return value. A handful of sacks and a turnover should be enough, not to mention doable considering Watson has been sacked 62 times this season.

Senior Fantasy Writer

Dave Richard has spent nearly his entire career covering the National Football League. Beginning with NFL.com at the boom of the Internet, Richard was that site's first Fantasy Football writer before transitioning... Full Bio

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