Yahoo DFS Football: Wild-Card Sunday Picks

Yahoo DFS Football: Wild-Card Sunday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Football series.

The wild card round of the NFL playoffs continues with a three-game slate Sunday. The Eagles and Buccaneers open the action at 1:00 p.m. EST, followed by the 49ers and Cowboys at 4:30 p.m. before the Steelers and Kansas City wrap up the action at 8:00 p.m. Kansas City and Tampa Bay are both substantial favorites, while Dallas is modestly favored in what's expected to be the highest-scoring clash of the day. Kansas City crushed Pittsburgh 36-10 in Week 16, while Tampa Bay won 28-22 in Philadelphia in Week 6. The 49ers and Cowboys didn't meet in the regular season.

QUARTERBACK

Dak Prescott, DAL vs. SF ($32): Prescott comes in comfortably cheaper than either Patrick Mahomes or Tom Brady, even though he was the league's hottest quarterback not named Joe Burrow over the season's final few weeks. Over his last three games, Prescott compiled a 12:0 TD:INT while throwing for at least 295 yards twice and adding 20-plus yards on the ground twice. Kansas City and the Buccaneers might be able to take their respective feet off the gas and turn to a run-heavy attack if they get up big as expected, but Dallas will likely be in a competitive game throughout against a San Francisco defense that allowed a 25:9 TD:INT through the air, as well as the eighth-most rushing yards (362) and rushing touchdowns (four) to quarterbacks.

RUNNING BACK

Leonard Fournette, TB vs. PHI ($28): Fournette was leading the league in receptions by a running back with 69 when he hurt his hamstring in Week 15, and he'll be needed as a safety valve even more with neither Chris Godwin (knee) nor Antonio Brown (acting a fool) available for Tampa Bay's playoff run. With Ronald Jones (ankle) having been ruled out, Fournette should also have limited competition for touches on the ground where he did most of his damage this season, with 812 yards and eight touchdowns to go with another 454 yards and two touchdowns receiving. If Fournette – who is a game-time decision himself – ends up sitting out, Ke'Shawn Vaughn ($14) would become a can't-miss value play in the Buccaneers backfield.

Darrel Williams, KC vs. PIT ($17): Both Williams (toe) and Clyde Edwards-Helaire (shoulder) are battling injuries, but Edwards-Helaire has been ruled out for a third consecutive game, while Williams is trending towards playing after exiting Kansas City's regular-season finale at halftime. In the game before that one, Williams put forth a dominant effort against the Bengals with CEH unavailable, totaling over 100 scrimmage yards and a pair of touchdowns. As the team's best goal-line back (team-high six rushing touchdowns) and top pass-catcher out of the backfield (47 receptions), Williams has the skills necessary to deliver excellent fantasy value for a heavily favored Kansas City squad while working ahead of Derrick Gore and Jerick McKinnon.

WIDE RECEIVER

Diontae Johnson, PIT at KC ($21): Johnson gobbled up a whopping 169 targets this season, tying Davante Adams for second in the league behind Cooper Kupp. That's elite company for a wide receiver who can be had at this salary. Ben Roethlisberger should look Johnson's way early and often, and with the Steelers expected to be playing from behind, the wideout should get plenty of opportunities to make plays after totaling 108 catches for 1,161 yards and eight touchdowns in the regular season. He scored Pittsburgh's lone touchdown in the 36-10 regular-season loss to Kansas City, so Johnson should be the first and probably only Steelers player you target Sunday.

Brandon Aiyuk, SF at DAL ($18): After a forgettable start to his sophomore season, Aiyuk finished strong, with either 90-plus yards or a touchdown in six of his last eight games. Top 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel's versatility will make it hard for top Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs to follow him around, so Diggs could often end up on Aiyuk, which is a double-edged sword for the 49ers. Diggs led the league with 11 interceptions but got so many picks by gambling often and was burned for over 1,000 yards by the receivers he was guarding in the process. All told, the Cowboys allowed 2,870 yards to wide receivers – seventh most in the league and most among teams in action Sunday.

Mike Evans, TB vs. PHI ($26): As mentioned earlier, Evans is the lone remaining member of what had been the league's best wide receiver trio with Godwin and Brown. The other two are chain-movers who rack up plenty of catches, while Evans is a scoring threat from anywhere on the field, able to come down with jump balls deep downfield and in the red zone. His 14 receiving touchdowns this season trailed only Kupp's 16, and while it's a bit concerning that Eagles cornerback Darius Slay was able to shut Evans down in the regular season, the Buccaneers won't have the option of simply running their offense through Brown like they did in that one. The value is there with Evans since he comes in cheaper than both Fournette and Rob Gronkowski among the Buccaneers' remaining elite weapons.

TIGHT END

Travis Kelce, KC vs. PIT ($29): Kelce missed the regular-season win over Pittsburgh after having recently come off the reserve/COVID-19 list, but he's healthy now and ready to prove that he's still the best tight end in the game on the heels of his sixth consecutive 1,000-yard season receiving. With doubts about the health of Kansas City's running backs and top wide receiver Tyreek Hill, who hurt his heel in pre-game warmups last week, Kansas City's high-powered offense will likely flow through Kelce, who takes his game to another level in the playoffs. In three games last postseason, Kelce caught 31 of 40 targets for 360 yards and three touchdowns, eclipsing 100 yards in every game.

DEFENSE

Kansas City Chiefs, KC vs. PIT ($16): This unit was a weakness early in the season but morphed into a strength in the second half of the campaign, averaging 11.2 fantasy points over Kansas City's last nine games, including 12 against the Steelers in Week 16. Ben Roethlisberger has become quite turnover-prone in his advanced age, tossing 10 interceptions while putting the ball on the ground 11 times and losing a career-worst five of those fumbles. There are also questions over the health of three-down workhorse running back Najee Harris (elbow), who played through the injury last week against the Ravens but mustered a paltry 2.5 yards per carry.

Honorable Mentions

QB: Tom Brady (TB, $35), Jimmy Garoppolo (SF, $22)

RB: Elijah Mitchell (SF, $20), Tony Pollard (DAL, $15), Miles Sanders (PHI, $15)

WR: Deebo Samuel (SF, $36), Amari Cooper (DAL, $20), Byron Pringle (KC, $13)

TE: Dallas Goedert (PHI, $18), Pat Freiermuth (PIT, $13)

DST: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. PHI, $15), Philadelphia Eagles (at TB, $10)

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Sasha Yodashkin plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Youngsash, DraftKings: Yashdogg,Yahoo: Sasha, Fanball: Yashdogg.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sasha Yodashkin
Sasha has been contributing NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB and Tennis content to RotoWire since 2015, with an emphasis on DFS. He is a huge New York sports fan who has been playing fantasy sports since middle school.
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