In Tampa Bay, WRs Chris Godwin (knee) and Russell Gage (hamstring) are both listed as questionable ahead of the team’s Week 1 showdown against the Cowboys. Gage has been a limited practice participant throughout the week, while Godwin sandwiched a DNP (did not participate) in yesterday’s practice with full sessions today and Wednesday. At the moment, this is a difficult situation to parse, but if both players are out, it would open up significant value on the Sunday Night Showdown slate, as Mike Evans and Julio Jones would likely see their roles increase, and secondary receivers Scotty Miller, Breshad Perriman and Jaelon Darden could enter the discussion.
The picture in Green Bay is a little more clear. It looks like the Packers will take the field without the services of Allen Lazard, who is listed as Doubtful with an ankle injury. The good news for Green Bay is that Robert Tonyan (knee) does not have a game status designation, presumably meaning he’s good to go following last season’s ACL tear. Considering the team’s pass-catching options, Tonyan could be busy on Sunday.
For the 49ers, George Kittle (groin) is questionable after missing another practice today. Kittle has a history of toughing it out through injuries, so you can’t rule him out just yet, but there doesn’t seem to be much optimism surrounding his Week 1 availability. The other tight end options in San Francisco are unappealing, but Kittle’s absence would be a slight boost for receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel.
J.K. Dobbins (knee) and Michael Thomas (hamstring) are two other names to watch leading up to Sunday, both listed questionable on today’s reports. The Ravens are fairly thin at running back behind Dobbins, and the Ravens would likely deploy a Kenyan Drake/Mike Davis platoon should Dobbins be unable to go. In New Orleans, Jarvis Landry and Chris Olave would both be intriguing options if Thomas is sidelined.
Christian McCaffrey was added to the Panthers’ injury report today with a shin injury. But he was a full participant in the day’s practice and is “fine”, according to head coach Matt Rhule. As long as CMC is not downgraded tomorrow, there’s no reason to sound the alarm.
Zach Wilson (knee) has been ruled out not only for Week 1, but the first four weeks of the season (at least). Interestingly, NFL network’s Ian Rapoport said that Wilson had not suffered a setback, prompting some to wonder whether the news update was performance related. In any event, Joe Flacco will lead the Jets’ offense through the first month of the season. Neither Jets QB is appealing in the Reignmakers format, which emphasizes season-long production.
Miles Sanders (hamstring) declared himself “absolutely” ready to go following a full practice session yesterday. Assuming Sanders is at close to full health, his cards have some value at their current price points in the Reignmakers marketplace. There is risk here though as many are expecting a platoon of some sort that will also include Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott.
According to The Athletic’s Greg Auman, a decision on Chris Godwin’s (knee) Week 1 status is expected to come down to the wire on Sunday. Keep an eye on Godwin’s prices in the marketplace to see if collectors get spooked as the injury remains a concern closer to kickoff.
Chris Godwin (knee) was able to get in a full practice today for the Bucs, putting him on track to play in Week 1. This news comes after Godwin was spotted without a knee brace at Monday's practice. It's been a remarkable recovery for Godwin, who tore his ACL in Week 15 of the 2021 season. Elsewhere at the position group, Russell Gage (hamstring) was limited in practice today.
George Kittle racked up a DNP (did not participate) on the 49ers' first practice report of the season due to a groin injury. Kittle reportedly sustained the injury on Monday and head coach Kyle Shanahan has said the team will take it "day-by-day" with the star right end.
For the Rams, Van Jefferson (knee) has been officially ruled out of the season opener tomorrow night. Ben Skowronek, Tutu Atwell and perhaps Lance McCutcheon will split third wide receiver duties for Los Angeles.
Welcome to the 2022 NFL Season!
This NFL season, we are pleased to have partnered with DraftKings as a content provider, covering their exciting new NFT-powered fantasy football game, DK Reignmakers! Each week in this space, we will be breaking down the upcoming Reignmakers NFL slate. As this is the inaugural season of DK Reignmakers, there will be a lot to learn along the way, but let’s start by explaining how Lucky Trader calculates “fair value” for Reignmakers cards.
First of all, there are two main components that determine a card’s price: how much people are willing to pay on the secondary market and how much utility a card has in the contests themselves. For example, if a card’s expected value in contests is $10, but people are only willing to pay $8 for this card in the secondary market, what is the value of the card?
For now, our fair value calculations focus almost exclusively on marketplace behavior, but as the season progresses, we will speak more to a card’s EV based on the number of entrants in specific contests. What do I mean by that? Let’s look at a quick example. Imagine DraftKings is hosting a contest with a $10K prize pool, and that contest pays out the first 500 finishers. Let’s imagine that Josh Allen has the highest projection on the slate and his player cards can be used in this contest. You should be much more willing to pay $30 for Allen’s card when there are only 700 entries in the contest versus the same contest with 7,000 entries. We will get there with our tools, but for now, contest EV is an important thing to keep in mind as you browse the marketplace.
So now that we know what is NOT currently included in the fair value estimates, you’re probably wondering what IS included. Here are the key variables that go into a card’s fair value estimate:
- A player’s season-long projection with a boost given to the current week’s projection. Remember, you are buying cards for the whole season
- Projections are broken down to point-per-dollar multipliers based on a card’s set, tier, and a player’s position
- Whether or not a player is considered a “SuperStar” (Reignmakers lineups can only contain one SuperStar player)
- Projected playoff production
- The number of primetime/island games a team plays.
Now that we’ve set the foundation, let’s turn our attention to the Week 1 slate. We’ll go game-by-game, hitting on a few notes from each contest.
Just getting started with DraftKings Reignmakers? Be sure to check out our how-to guide.
Bills at Rams, Thursday 8:20 ET
The first game ever to be featured on Reignmakers, the Buffalo-Los Angeles Rams game appears on the Thursday Night Showdown slate and the Thursday-Monday full week slate.
The Thursday-Monday slate offers a CORE Single Entry contest with $10k in total prizes, with the first 4,111 spots getting paid out. At the time of writing, there are already 30,000 entries in this contest, and I assume most new collectors will enter this contest after ripping their free CORE pack. I’ll probably throw a CORE team into this contest based on the cards I have leftover, but it’s not one I am going out of my way to target. For the purposes of the Bills/Rams player cards, the Showdown slate is much more appealing to me.
What’s interesting about this game is that it contains two SuperStars: Bills QB Josh Allen and Rams WR Cooper Kupp. That duo of players cannot appear together in valid lineups. At the cheaper tiers, I would expect that most lineups will contain either an Allen-Diggs or a Stafford-Kupp stack, though at the more premium tiers, those combinations will be more difficult for players to put together due to cost and scarcity.
Looking at upcoming schedules, Buffalo turns around and plays on another single-game Showdown slate in Week 2 when the Bills take on the Titans. This gives Buffalo’s premium players a short-term boost in valuation. To help explain why that is the case, think about this question: where do you feel better about your odds of cashing a Allen lineup: in a single-game Showdown contest with only a handful of viable options, or on a 13-game Sunday slate with exponentially more players in the pool?
After Week 1, the Rams are light on primetime contests until the end of the season when they will likely be available on four consecutive Showdown slates. Plan accordingly.
On a player level, Dawson Knox’s Reignmaker and Legendary cards are currently underpriced according to our fair value estimates, but you would presumably be buying those cards to play in Showdown this week and next. And with the tight end position devalued in the Showdown format where players are not required to roster a tight end, it’s hard for me to get too enthusiastic here.
WR Isaiah McKenzie has battled a hamstring injury of late, but he was a full participant in Monday’s practice, putting him on track to play in Week 1. His cards are fairly expensive in the marketplace relative to his projection, and Jamison Crowder may be an interesting contrarian option in larger contests, especially if McKenzie is not 100 percent.
Running backs Devin Singletary and James Cook are both underpriced and somewhat appealing as ways to get unique in larger field contests at the lower tiers. Just be aware that the Buffalo backfield is one of the murkiest in the league, with Singletary, Cook, and potentially even Zack Moss expected to split the load. These RBs will also look a lot better on next week’s slate when paired with Tennessee’s less fantasy-friendly offense in Showdown contests.
On the Rams side, WR Allen Robinson stands out as a value. While Kupp can’t be paired in lineups with Josh Allen due to the SuperStar restriction, Robinson may be a popular “bring-back” from the Rams side in Josh Allen-Diggs and Josh Allen-Davis stacks.
Rams WR Van Jefferson’s (knee) status will be worth monitoring leading up to kickoff. Should Jefferson be unable to go, 2021 second-round draft pick Tutu Atwell becomes interesting as a way to get unique in larger contests, though there is no guarantee that Atwell plays ahead of Ben Skowronek or preseason darling Lance McCutcheon, both of whom do not yet have player cards on the Reignmakers platform.
Rams head coach Sean McVay said the team would place “no limitations” on QB Matthew Stafford despite concerning reports on Stafford’s elbow throughout the offseason.
Saints at Falcons, Sunday 1 PM ET
This game appears only on the Sunday Main slate and there are few schedule angles at play here with Atlanta playing only one island game in Week 10 and New Orleans appearing on full slates only until Week 4.
On the Atlanta side, it’s hard for me to get excited about QB Marcus Mariota when he’s only eligible for one Showdown slate all year and may be replaced later in the season by rookie Desmond Ridder. The running backs are a mess and WR Drake London is a guy I’d rather wait to buy low on in the event he gets off to a slow start. TE Kyle Pitts is interesting here, but he is priced up accordingly.
As for the Saints, RB Alvin Kamara seems like one of the better bets over the season’s opening weeks. Since Kamara is not currently classified as a SuperStar, he can be paired with studs like Patrick Mahomes, Christian McCaffrey, and Justin Jefferson in lineups. Just be aware that designation can change over the course of the season.
There’s lots of upside at the wide receiver position, but it’s hard to know what to expect in Week 1 from a group that includes a free agent (Jarvis Landry), a rookie (Chris Olave), and Michael Thomas whose last relevant production came before any of us knew what COVID-19 was. For now, I’m just keeping an eye on this group, though it’s not a bad place to take shots if you have confidence in one of Landry, Olave, or Thomas emerging as the top dog.
Browns at Panthers, Sunday 1 PM ET
The Baker Mayfield (the quarterback is now with Carolina) drama saves this game from being completely unappealing, but there are few fantasy options here. The game currently has a 41.5-point total and the two teams combine for only three primetime games all season.
I’ll never argue against CMC, but he comes with a SuperStar designation and you’ll have to pay up to get him.
As for the Cleveland side, I’d rather wait for prices to fall before buying back later in the year ahead of QB Deshaun Watson’s late-season debut.
Jaguars at Commanders, Sunday 1 PM ET
There’s no shortage of gross games on the 1 p.m. slate, and Jacksonville-Washington is no exception. Both Jacksonville and Washington play in two island games this year, beginning in Week 7, so there is no schedule angle here.
On the Jacksonville side, WR Marvin Jones, TE Evan Engram, and RB James Robinson are underpriced relative to their season-long projections, but not enough for me to consider buying in, particularly so for Robinson, as he works his way back from an Achilles injury that was sustained towards the end of the 2021 season. I don’t mind the idea of taking a chance on QB Trevor Lawrence and hoping he starts the year hot. The market would certainly respond to a fast start from last year’s No. 1 overall draft pick.
As for Washington, QB Carson Wentz has to be one of the least exciting fantasy quarterbacks and RB Brian Robinson’s early season absence makes it difficult to make a season-long investment in either himself or RB Antonio Gibson. It’s possible that a buy window on Robinson may open up later in the season as we get closer to his return though, so keep an eye out here. WR Jahan Dotson has had a strong summer and he’s the player I’d be interested in if I were forced to buy a Commanders card. Fortunately, no one is forcing me to do that.
Eagles at Lions, Sunday 1 PM ET
Everyone’s sneaky Super Bowl pick (Philadelphia) is favored by four points over the "Hard Knocks" all-stars in a game that has plenty of intriguing options. Detroit plays only one island game this season, while Philly plays five, beginning in Week 2 against Minnesota on Monday Night Football.
I won’t talk you out of buying in on the Eagles offense ahead of this game, though I plan to take more of a wait-and-see approach here. Specifically at running back, if it looks like Miles Sanders is limited by his lingering hamstring injury, or if Kenneth Gainwell simply plays ahead of Sanders, I will be looking to buy Gainwell, pending what is currently available in the marketplace.
My dream scenario would involve a bad game from QB Jalen Hurts here, which may allow me to buy in cheaper ahead of the upcoming stretch of games where Philly plays five island games over 11 weeks.
As for the Lions, RB D'Andre Swift is one of the better players not to be classified as a SuperStar, so he’ll be worth considering as long as that remains the case, though he is priced appropriately. TE T.J. Hockenson may be worth a buy low ahead of Week 4 when DraftKings introduces its new “Deep Roster” format, which will require a tight end, but he’s not someone I’m losing sleep over. Both QB Jared Goff and WR D.J. Chark are fine at their price tags, but are these guys ever going to be the reason you cashed on a 12-game slate? Probably not.
Ravens at Jets, Sunday 1 PM ET
Normally, we’d be excited to play a running back whose team is favored by 10 points, but the picture in Baltimore is pretty complicated at the position. If J.K. Dobbins (knee) plays, he’ll at least be intriguing, though it’s hard to know how close to full health he is following last season’s ACL tear. Gus Edwards (knee) remains sidelined, leaving Mike Davis, Justice Hill, and newly-signed Kenyan Drake to split the workload.
The Ravens, somewhat surprisingly, play only three island games this year, but that includes a stretch of three-in-five weeks beginning in Week 5. Lamar Jackson is considered a SuperStar and he is priced up, but I can’t argue with the matchup here.
The current Reignmakers roster format of QB-RB-WR-WR/TE-FLEX devalues Mark Andrews, who should be considered a top-three tight end this season. But since Deep Roster contests (beginning in Week 4) will require tight ends, my dream scenario here involves Andrews’ price dropping over the next two to three weeks, allowing me to buy in ahead of the new format. If Dobbins either sits out or plays poorly in Week 1, I’ll be on the lookout for a buy-low window here too.
As for the Jets, the positional hierarchy at both running back and wide receiver is unclear entering Week 1, they play only a single island game all year, and Joe Flacco seems likely to be starting for them at quarterback this week — though Zach Wilson (knee) has not yet been officially ruled out. No thanks.
Steelers at Bengals, Sunday 1 PM ET
The Bengals play five total island games in 2022, including a stretch of three-in-five weeks beginning in Week 4. The fantasy options on Cincinnati are well-defined and the market has priced them accordingly. But if you have the funds, QB Joe Burrow, RB Joe Mixon, and WRs Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins all feel like solid season-long investments.
Pittsburgh plays in a sneaky high number of island games this year (five) and they’ll be an interesting team to keep an eye on. The dream scenario here would be for QB Kenny Pickett’s price to get pushed down while Mitch Trubisky starts games early in the season, followed by the team switching to Pickett before Week 7, which kicks off a string of three island games over six weeks for the Steelers. In the meantime, it will be difficult to invest in the Pittsburgh quarterback position.
The Steelers are implied to score only 19 points this week, and with another tough defense on tap in Week 2 (New England), I’ll look to buy low on this offense before their Week 3 primetime game against the Browns.
Patriots at Dolphins, Sunday 1 PM ET
Speaking of the Patriots, they travel to Miami to take on the Dolphins in a game that has a middle-of-the-pack, 46.5-point game total.
The Patriots play five total island games, including four in a row from Weeks 12-15. With so much uncertainty in this offense, I’m probably waiting until we get closer to that late-season window before I invest in this team.
On the other hand, Miami plays three total island games this season, beginning in Week 4. QB Tua Tagovailoa and WR Tyreek Hill may be one of the higher-upside single stacks you can create without burning a SuperStar spot, and Tua-Tyreek and WR Jaylen Waddle is my pick for the highest upside non-SuperStar double stack. For whatever that is worth.
49ers at Bears, Sunday 1 PM ET
The 49ers are one of the larger favorites on the Week 1 board, as San Francisco is favored by nearly a touchdown despite playing on the road behind an inexperienced starting quarterback in Trey Lance.
Both Lance and his Bears' counterpart Justin Fields possess high ceilings due to their rushing abilities, though the vibes coming out of Chicago all offseason have been concerning. Some of Fields’ player cards are currently showing up as slight values based on his season-long projections, which would make the second-year QB a smash in upside scenarios. If I were investing in Fields, I’d strongly also consider scooping Darnell Mooney, who almost has to play well in order for Fields to exceed value in 2022.
Arguments in favor of San Francisco’s skill players can be made up and down the roster, and this is an offense I will look to invest in ahead of its pair of back-to-back primetime games in Weeks 3-4. As for Week 1, Eli Mitchell is particularly appealing to me. It feels like he is still priced down after dealing with a hamstring injury throughout training camp, but the running back returned to practice on Aug. 28 and seems good to go by all accounts. And assuming he’s close to full health, it’s tough to argue with the spot: he’s the lead back in a run-first offense that is favored to win by nearly a touchdown.
Colts at Texans, Sunday 1 PM ET
The Texans play only one island game all year and open the season as 7.5-point dogs. Playing at home, a QB Davis Mills-WR Brandin Cooks-RB Jonathan Taylor game stack doesn’t seem like the worst idea in the world. But this is probably something I’d rather try in DFS, where there are more advantages that come with playing a cheap Texans stack, given the salary cap-based format.
The Colts play in four island games this season, beginning in Week 5, so there’s not much of a schedule angle here. Taylor is set up to dominate this matchup, but keep in mind he comes with the SuperStar designation and a hefty price tag. Several of Matt Ryan’s cards are undervalued relative to his season-long projection, and the matchup won’t get much better than this. I won’t talk you out of it if you need a cheap quarterback option, but it’s not the most exciting play on the board.
Giants at Titans, Sunday 4:25 PM ET
Tennessee does play Buffalo in the aforementioned Week 2 Monday Night game, making them an intriguing lookahead team, though the rest of their four total island games come after Week 8.
You could argue that the two starting running backs – Derrick Henry and Saquon Barkley – are the top two players in this contest, and that makes me concerned that the game could devolve into a gross ground battle. On the positive side, Barkley is not currently considered a “SuperStar," meaning he can be paired together in lineups with the most elite players. I don’t see a reason to be excited about any of the Giants’ pass-catchers, but I am fairly interested in Robert Woods ahead of next week’s Showdown contest, and I’ll be quick to move on Treylon Burks or Kyle Philips if either of the rookie receivers flash upside in Week 1.
Raiders at Chargers, Sunday 4:25 PM ET
One of my favorite games on the Week 1 slate, Raiders/Chargers features a 51-point game total and two teams that combine for nine island games this season (five for the Chargers, four for the Raiders). Both teams appear to be healthy entering the season and there are three total SuperStars to consider: QB Justin Herbert and RB Austin Ekeler for the Chargers and WR Davante Adams for the Raiders.
The Chargers turn around and play the Chiefs on Thursday Night Football in Week 2, which opens up an interesting strategy angle. If you plan to play QB Patrick Mahomes (who is also a SuperStar) on the Week 2 Showdown slate, perhaps the best way to attack Raiders/Chargers is through WRs Keenan Allen or Mike Williams, who could be paired in lineups with Mahomes next week, while Ekeler and Herbert cannot appear in lineups with Mahomes. WR Josh Palmer and TE Gerald Everett have been ADP (average draft position) risers in best ball fantasy football drafts throughout the offseason and make for interesting cheaper options to consider for their upcoming Showdown utility.
The Raiders are a little bit harder to predict as they feature both a new head coach in Josh McDaniels and WR1 in Adams. It’s hard to bet against Adams, but he feels like the riskiest of the “SuperStar” players to me due to his offseason change in scenery. I’m hoping TE Darren Waller’s price will come down a bit over the next couple of weeks, as he is a player I’d love to target before Deep Roster Format launches in Week 4.
Packers at Vikings, Sunday 4:25 PM ET
The Packers play in a ton of island games this season and their players are worth pursuing if you are one who places a premium on Showdown slates. Green Bay leads the league this season with seven potential island games, beginning next week when they face the Bears on Sunday Night Football. Unfortunately, it’s hard to predict where the production will come from in the receiving game. An already clouded depth chart at the position is made even murkier by injuries at the position, as both Allen Lazard (undisclosed) and rookie Christian Watson (knee) are iffy to play in the opener. Should both players be out, Sammy Watkins and Romeo Doubs will be worth a look.
Tight end Robert Tonyan (knee) is also uncertain to play, following an ACL tear he sustained last season. Should Tonyan miss the first portion of the season, backup Josiah Deguara would have been moderately appealing as a dart-throw given the Packers’ Showdown heavy schedule, but Deguara is not yet available on the Reignmakers platform.
The Vikings play three island games this season, and both RB Dalvin Cook and WR Justin Jefferson have the SuperStar designation. Of course, Jefferson and Cook can always be worked into lineups, but the environment isn’t doing them any favors here.
Chiefs at Cardinals, Sunday 4:25 PM ET
The Chiefs-Cardinals game features the highest game total on the Week 1 slate and plenty of intriguing fantasy options. Cardinals QB Kyler Murray and Chiefs TE Travis Kelce are two of the better non-SuperStar players in the game right now and both are worth targeting. The prospect of playing a non-SuperStar designated Kelce at tight end in Deep Roster Format games in Week 4 is very interesting, although it’s always possible that Kelce could be re-classified as a SuperStar before that time.
The depth chart at wide receiver is somewhat cloudy in Kansas City, but that has kept prices reasonable and this is a good place to take shots at season-long upside. The running back position has disappointed over the past couple of seasons, but the upside provided by this offense remains.
The Cardinals play in four island games this season, and all of them will take place after DeAndre Hopkins returns from a six-game suspension. He’ll be someone to keep an eye on and a player I’d like to gain exposure to before Week 7. WR Marquise Brown is a little overpriced relative to his season-long projection, but his range of outcomes feels wide following his departure from the run-heavy Baltimore offense. Still, the early season price premium coupled with Hopkins’ mid-season return date has me leaning towards a fade for now. TE Zach Ertz (calf) and WR Rondale Moore (undisclosed) are both day-to-day leading up to Week 1.
Buccaneers at Cowboys, Sunday 8:20 PM ET
The Sunday Night Showdown slate features the Bucs clashing with the Cowboys in a game that currently has a total of 51.5 points. Both teams will become familiar faces in Showdown slates throughout the year as Tampa Bay and Dallas each play six island games this season.
CeeDee Lamb is the only player in this game with a SuperStar designation, and that will also be the case over Dallas’ next two Showdown slates (@NYG, @PHI). Lamb is pricey, but he is now the centerpiece of a Cowboys’ passing attack that will be without free agent departures Amari Cooper and Cedrick Wilson, and injured starters Michael Gallup (knee) and James Washington (foot), and the schedule sets up nicely for him. He’s a player I am interested in where the price is right.
Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard, and Dalton Schultz are pretty much known commodities at this point, though there is some intrigue at the WR2 spot. Third-round rookie Jalen Tolbert was a buzzy name earlier in the spring, but he’s seen his stock fall over the preseason and I’m not sure he’s a better bet than Noah Brown or Simi Fehoko in Week 1. Unfortunately, neither Brown nor Fehoko is available on Reignmakers, making Tolbert the default dart throw option here. Playing a defense against a Tom Brady offense is generally a mistake and Dallas’ kicker (Jonathan Garibay) is not available in the player pool either.
On the Bucs side, there will be plenty of stacking options, but we’ll need to wait until the injury picture becomes a little bit more clear later in the week. The news on WR Chris Godwin (knee) has been generally positive all offseason as he works his way back from a late-season ACL tear, and he was seen practicing without a knee brace on Monday. Still, this is going to be one of the more important injury situations to monitor.
WR Russell Gage (hamstring) is “on track to play” in Week 1, according to coach Todd Bowles, but neither he nor new addition Julio Jones has had much time to practice with Tom Brady, who also missed a significant portion of training camp. I’ll be keeping a close eye on the Bucs practice reports and will be ready to move depending on Godwin’s status throughout the week.
The tight end position will likely feature a Kyle Rudolph/Cam Brate platoon that I’d rather avoid, though there are some interesting rookie options (Cade Otton, Ko Kieft) who could emerge later in the year. At running back, Leonard Fournette should command the bulk of the carries. Rookie RB Rachaad White would have been an interesting contrarian dart throw, but he too is also absent from the player pool.
Broncos at Seahawks, Monday 8:15 PM ET
The Russell Wilson Revenge Game closes out Week 1 on Monday night as Wilson will make his Broncos debut in his former home stadium.
The Seahawks play two more island games after Week 1, but the next opportunity does not come until Week 10. Geno Smith won the starting quarterback job in the preseason and he is an interesting case this week. His CORE cards are showing up as highly overvalued based on his season-long projection, but that is partly because he has a much smaller supply of cards on the market than most other quarterbacks. He is important for this slate, but he may not even be starting by the time the Seahawks play their next Showdown slate in November.
Rookie Ken Walker’s (hernia) injury opens the door for RB Rashaad Penny to command a heavy workload and WRs DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett are both currently underpriced relative to their season-long projections. Those projections do feel especially fragile though given the uncertainty at the quarterback position in Seattle. Dee Eskridge is the only other wide receiver that is in the player pool and he is somewhat interesting as a contrarian option following a rookie campaign that was lost to injury.
TE Noah Fant did not have the most inspiring preseason, but he’s a former top prospect and available at a discount. TE Will Dissly has had a couple of spike weeks over his career and is there as a total dart throw.
The Broncos match the Packers with seven island games this season, including four in the first six weeks. This is an offense to target and one that has been thinned out a bit by offseason injuries to WR Tim Patrick (knee) and TE Greg Dulcich (hamstring).
RB Javonte Williams is currently projected to outscore Melvin Gordon by 100 fantasy points over the course of the season, and the values of these two players will come down to what you think the workload split is going to look like. But given the favorable early season schedule, I’m willing to take chances here. Without Patrick, Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, and KJ Hamler are the clear options at wide receiver and Albert Okwuegbunam seems poised for a large workload while Dulcich remains out.
The Broncos defense is in play against Geno Smith, and they could be usable over the team’s next two Showdowns (home vs. SF, home vs. IND). Brandon McManus is one of my favorite fantasy kickers, as he gets to play half of his games in high altitude where the ball carries a bit further, though that is not the case in Week 1 at Seattle.