Week 10 features a 10-game main slate that kicks off at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Finally, make sure to check out all the projections available for purchase (Chris Raybon’s come included with a FantasyLabs subscription) within the FantasyLabs Models. Subscribers now have the option to purchase Derek Carty’s THE BLITZ from our Marketplace. Projections from One Week Season and Establish the Run are available if you’re a subscriber to those specific sites (our optimizer is a separate add-on feature).
You can also combine them to create your own aggregate projections:
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NFL DFS Quarterback Picks
Jalen Hurts and Patrick Mahomes are off the main slate. Lamar Jackson ($8,000) and Justin Herbert ($7,700) have tough situations. That leaves Joe Burrow ($6,800) as the standout top option at quarterback.
Burrow has topped 25 DraftKings points in both games since the Bengals’ bye and has looked much better on his injured calf that hindered his early season play. Those games were against tough defenses in the Bills and 49ers, though both teams have the offensive capabilities to push Cincinnati down the stretch.
Then again, so do the Texans, who exploded for 39 points last week and looked to have found the answer at quarterback in CJ Stroud ($6,900). What they don’t have is a defense on par with Buffalo or San Francisco, as they rank 26th in DVOA against the pass.
All of which sets up nicely for Burrow, at least assuming he has a healthy Ja’Marr Chase ($8,600) to throw to. With Tee Higgins already declared out, it could be tough for Burrow if he’s missing both his top receivers. Keep an eye on our news feed Sunday morning, and roster Burrow with confidence if Chase is active.
While Burrow is the consensus top overall pick, there are a few options in the $5,000 range in Week 10. We’ll touch on all of them below, but I’m partial to Brock Purdy ($5,700) of the 49ers.
San Francisco’s offense has scored exactly 17 points in each of their last three contests after they topped 30 in their first five games. However, those first five games had a healthy Deebo Samuel ($6,200), while the last three didn’t. Samuel is expected to return in Week 10, giving Purdy a full complement of dangerous weapons.
Purdy topped 21 points in three of the five games with Samuel and 3x’d his Week 10 salary in another. At his price point, a score in the 20s would obviously be more than enough, making him a strong option for cash games. He’s even viable in tournaments, considering the lack of massive-upside players at the position, as a score in the mid-20s could see him make the winning lineup.
While the likeliest outcome for Lamar Jackson against a tough Browns defense is a low (for him) score, there’s a path to upside. The Browns’ pass rush is elite and could force Jackson to run for his life from Myles Garrett. That’s a problem for most quarterbacks, but it could just be a positive for Jackson with his scrambling ability. The Browns also run a man-heavy scheme, similar to the Lions who allowed Jackson to score 37.88 DraftKings points. He’s an interesting option at lower-than-usual ownership and could get there without any of his primary pass catchers coming along for the ride.
At the cheaper end, Baker Mayfield ($5,100) should see a strong workload against a pass-funnel Titans defense. The Bucs haven’t been afraid to lean on Mayfield when needed, with three games of 37 or more pass attempts. The slow pace of the Titans and his limited rushing production caps his upside, but he’s a strong cash game option.
For GPPs, don’t forget about Jared Goff ($6,400). He’s a road favorite in the highest-total game on the slate. We normally prefer to roster Goff at home, but this is the next best thing. Detroit is playing in Los Angeles, and Goff is a California native who started his career with the Rams — plus we don’t have to worry about cold weather. Like Purdy, he has excellent pass-catchers who can score him some easy points.
NFL DFS Running Back Picks
Christian McCaffrey ($9,200) has at least 22 DraftKings points in six of eight games this season. The lone exceptions were the blowout win over the Cowboys, and the matchup with the elite Browns defense. Neither of those is the case this week, as they take on a Jaguars team that should keep pace offensively and is strong but not elite on defense.
In addition to remarkable consistency, CMC also has elite upside. His 51.70-point game against the Cardinals is a prime example. It takes a big score to pay off McCaffrey’s salary — which is $800 more than any other back — but he clearly has the ability to get there.
The return of Deebo is a slight concern, as touches should be fairly spread out in the 49ers offense. However, San Francisco will still lean on their star back as long as the game is competitive. Especially coming off a bye, where McCaffrey should be well rested and capable of a big workload. The last time McCaffrey had a long rest (thanks to a Thursday game the week prior) was his 51-point game against the Cardinals.
He’s been woefully inefficient this season, but Alexander Mattison ($5,500) should have an elite workload in Week 10. Due to his early season struggles, Minnesota signed Cam Akers to function as another option in the backfield — until Akers tore his Achilles.
Now it’s back to Mattison, in a game that sets up well for Minnesota to lean on the run. Justin Jefferson appears to still be a week away, and KJ Osborn is doubtful with a concussion. That leaves newly acquired Josh Dobbs ($5,500) little in the way of weaponry while facing a defense that’s much softer on the ground.
The limited options at receiver also raise Mattison’s floor in the passing game. Before Minnesota acquired Akers, Mattison drew 17 targets in three games — and that was with Jefferson hogging targets. Now he has less backfield competition, a quarterback much more likely to check down to backs than Kirk Cousins, and limited competition from the receivers.
All of which gives Mattsion a rock-solid floor for his price tag. He’ll need to step up the efficiency to pay off for GPPs, but he’s a strong cash game option either way.
Austin Ekeler ($8,400) has a case for being the top back this week over McCaffrey. The Chargers standout has way less competition for the ball, as Los Angeles has top receivers Mike Williams and Josh Palmer on injured reserve. The offense is almost entirely based around Ekeler and Keenan Allen ($8,800) in a great game environment as home underdogs against Detroit. He’s less likely to find the end zone than McCaffrey, but outside of that, he’s an equally strong option.
We’ve gotten just one good game from Tony Pollard ($7,300) this season. That was his first meeting with his Week 10 opponent, the New York Giants. Dallas is favored by 18 and expected to roll the Giants (again), which should mean an elevated rush rate for Pollard. He should come at somewhat low ownership, thanks to how poorly he’s played, making him a solid post-chalk play.
Outside of McCaffrey, Travis Etienne ($7,100) might just have the best role of any back in the NFL. He ranks second in the league in carries, sixth in targets (among running backs), and trails only Josh Jacobs in total opportunities (With one less game played.) He’s a perfect bring-back for Purdy lineups, as San Francisco has an excellent pass defense but is mediocre against the run.
David Montgomery ($6,900) is back for the Lions. He’s likely to have a reduced workload following the emergence of Jahmyr Gibbs ($7,000) in his absence. However, he should still be the goal-line back. He has six touchdowns in the four games he’s started and finished this season. Montgomery needs multiple scores to pay off his price tag, but his chances of doing that are as strong as any player on the slate.
NFL DFS Wide Receiver Picks
With Tee Higgins ruled out and his quarterback leading the slate in median and ceiling projection, the obvious answer is Ja’Marr Chase. We broke down the appeal of the Bengals passing attack in the entry on Burrow, and Chase essentially is the entirety of the attack without Higgins.
There’s some concern that he’ll be limited here as he returns from a back injury. His answer when asked about it following the Week 9 game didn’t exactly inspire confidence:
Ja’Marr Chase, on how he’s feeling today: “I’m alive. That’s the best thing right now.”
— Ben Baby (@Ben_Baby) November 6, 2023
Still, he got in three straight practices as of Friday and should be out there on Sunday. It’s hard to see the Bengals not utilizing him at a high clip given their limited options. He clearly has the talent to succeed against the Texans’ 26th-ranked pass defense.
The top value options on the slate might come down to who’s active Sunday morning, with notable injuries to wide receivers throughout the league. Rather than try to narrow it down on a Friday, we’ll touch on a few spots here.
If Michael Wilson ($3,500) is inactive for the Cardinals again, Rondale Moore ($3,000) should have a reasonable role for the Cardinals. Arizona should be throwing a bit more with Kyler Murray ($5,900) back under center, Moore adds a bit of value with a few carries per game on average.
Even with Chase active, Trenton Irwin ($3,000) should see some looks from the Bengals. The last time Tee Higgins missed a contest, Irwin saw 10 targets against the Cardinals. The vacated targets from Higgins are likely to flow more to Irwin than Tyler Boyd ($4,600), with the former serving as Higgins’ direct backup. And he’s minimum priced.
Finally, somebody needs to step up behind Keenan Allen for the Chargers. The game is expected to be a shootout, and no active player has a double-digit target share behind Allen and Ekeler. Quentin Johnston ($4,100) has topped out at six targets this season, but he’s a first-round rookie and could come on in the second half of the season. He’s the likeliest option, but Jalen Guyton ($3,000) and Derius Davis ($3,100) could factor in as well.
Amon-Ra St. Brown ($8,300) has had his best games with David Montgomery sidelined, as the Lions became far more pass-heavy in those contests. However, he could still get there in a possible shootout against the Chargers. He’s averaged just under nine targets per game with Montgomery active, enough to pay off his salary if he takes one or two to the end zone.
While I mentioned some secondary Chargers options as value plays, it could just be that Keenan Allen is force-fed a huge number of targets. He had an 18/215/0 line against the Vikings with the Chargers similarly limited at receiver His $8,800 salary means he’d need to have a big day to pay it off, but who else does Los Angeles lean on if this game goes nuclear?
De’Andre Hopkins ($6,000) lacks the speed and playmaking ability to pay off his salary on yards and touchdowns alone. However, he has a ridiculous red zone role, as evidenced by his three touchdowns in the first game of the Will Levis ($5,300) era. We might not see three in a game again, but he’ll probably have another multi-touchdown game at some point. Facing a pass-funnel Bucs team is as likely a time as any.
On the other side, Mike Evans ($7,200) and Chris Godwin ($6,700) are taking on the heaviest pass funnel in the league. With nearly identical target shares around 23%, it’s hard for both to hit in the same game — which is why we like Mayfield — but one or the other certainly could.
Nico Collins and running back Dameon Pierce are out for the Texans, with Robert Woods ($4,000) truly questionable. Pierce’s absence likely means another elevated pass rate game for the Texans, while Woods’ absence would further concentrate targets on Tank Dell ($5,500). He’s an excellent bring-back for Burrow/Chase rosters, even if Woods suits up. Without him, he might be the slate’s best price-considered wideout.
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NFL DFS Tight End Picks
Another week without Travis Kelce on the main slate means we get to explore other premium tight end options. There are two that stand out this week, with TJ Hockenson ($5,000) and Sam LaPorta ($5,700) topping our projections.
Both have their warts. Hockenson is questionable, as is the quarterback play in Minnesota. The Vikings are implied for just 19 points against a tough Saints defense. The environment is much better for LaPorta and the Lions, but Detroit wants to be a run-first team, and there are plenty of players capable of commanding targets when they do throw.
You’re getting a larger piece of a smaller pie with Hockenson, but he’s also $700 cheaper. That’s enough for me to lean in his direction from a price-considered standpoint. The concerns on both are significant enough that I’m unlikely to use either in cash games, though.
At first glance, it seems like the Trey McBride ($3,500) era was merely a week long for the Cardinals. After his Week 8 explosion, he caught just three passes for 22 yards in Week 9.
He also had to suffer through Clayton Tune at quarterback while playing the league’s top overall defense. Neither of those are the case in Week 10, as the Cardinals get Kyler Murray back while facing the Falcons’ 28th-ranked pass defense.
While this game projects to be a fairly slow, low-scoring affair, McBride should still see enough looks to pay off his meager salary. We’re lucky to get him back to this price following his ceiling game in Week 8, and we might never get him there again. He’s approaching “free square” territory for cash games.
Evan Engram ($4,500) has seen at least seven targets in every game since Week 1, with at least five catches in six of those seven games. His fantasy scoring and his salary are being held down by his lack of touchdowns, but we would expect regression in that category at some point. He should come in at fairly low ownership thanks to his awkward price point (just find the $500 for Hock!), making him an excellent GPP pivot.
It’s always worth keeping an eye on George Kittle ($6,100) and Mark Andrews ($6,900), who have the highest true ceilings on the slate. Both can pop up for the occasional 25+ point game, more or less at random. They’re less likely to this week, but it certainly wouldn’t shock anyone.
GPP Roster Construction
I’m entrusting most of my GPP lineup building to SimLabs this week. That doesn’t mean I’m just letting it blindly produce lineups, though. I broke down how I’m approaching tournament roster construction here.
Outside of the spots mentioned there, there are a few angles worth considering. Most lineups this week will either have Burrow or a cheap option at quarterback. That creates a gap in ownership on the players in the $5,900-$6,700 range — a group that includes Dak Prescott ($6,700), Trevor Lawrence ($6,000), and others.
That also means the primary pass catchers for those players will likely go under-owned, so stacks built around them should be solid leverage plays this week. Ditto with tight ends between Hockenson and McBride in salary. Evan Engram being the notable example, as he also pairs nicely with Lawrence.
Burrow is projected as the most popular quarterback, but there’s a significant chance the vast majority of his production goes through Ja’Marr Chase. If he throws for 250 yards and two touchdowns, but half the yardage and both scores go to Chase, would you want to stack both players? Probably not, and you can create significant leverage over Burrow lineups by rostering Chase with Joe Mixon ($6,200), which should lock in the bulk of the Bengals scoring without burning the quarterback spot.
It’s likely that the price tag on Dallas ($4,400) keeps their ownership down, which is understandable. Still, we just saw a high-priced “obvious” defense win the Milly Maker last week. It’s not hard to see it happening again.
The big decision for cash games will be in paying up for Burrow or rostering one of the cheaper quarterbacks. I like going with Option B and using the salary savings to fit Ja’Marr Chase. That way, you still have some exposure to the bulk of Burrow’s production. I prefer Purdy, but there are plenty of viable options in that price range.
Pairing Purdy with McCaffrey locks in most of the 49ers production, which is important for a team that’s topped 30 points in every game they’ve had Deebo Samuel. It also makes salary tight when rostering Chase — but that’s where the bevy of near-minimum wideouts comes into play. McCaffrey isn’t a must, though, with Etienne a fine substitute at more than $2,000 cheaper.
It’ll likely feature two cheaper receivers in a three-running back build if Robert Woods is active, but substitute Tank Dell for one of the backs if Woods misses. It’s a fairly thin week at running back, but I can plug my nose and play Alexander Mattison and/or Rachaad White ($5,800) at their price tags.
As mentioned in the tight end section, McBride is a foregone conclusion for cash games. That leaves us with defense. I’d love to be able to pay up for Dallas, but that’s easier said than done. Otherwise, I’m fine with rostering the bad Arizona ($2,500) defense against an equally bad Falcons offense.