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Daily Fantasy Football: FanDuel Roster Building Divisional Round

Rich Hribar breaks down every game in the Divisional Round to construct his optimal daily fantasy football lineup.

Knowshon Mareno, daily fantasy football

San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos

Chargers

$$

Broncos

$$

Philip Rivers

$8,000

Peyton Manning

$11,500

Ryan Mathews

$7,600

Knowshon Moreno

$8,500

Danny Woodhead

$6,200

Montee Ball

$5,000

Keenan Allen

$6,700

Demaryius Thomas

$8,800

Ladarius Green

$4,700

Eric Decker

$8,400

Antonio Gates

$4,500

Wes Welker

$7,800

Julius Thomas

$6,800

 

This will be third meeting of the two and the Chargers have made no secret in how they are going to approach this game. In the first two meetings combined, the Chargers held the ball for 64 percent of the time, with over 38 minutes of time of possession in each. That resulted in Denver running only 61 and 54 offensive plays, their fewest totals on the season. In every other game, Denver ran at least 71 plays per game and averaged 80.1 plays per game. The Chargers want to play keep away, and Denver better be prepared to stop the run.

That will likely push me off of Rivers completely, who is unfortunately the cheapest quarterback option. Rivers has attempted over 30 passes in a game just once over the past five weeks and hasn’t thrown for 300 yards since Thanksgiving. The volume could exist if Denver takes San Diego out of game script, but you’re chasing in that situation.

One thing that could aid that happening is if Ryan Mathews isn’t 100 percent after missing most of the second half last weekend with an ankle injury. It’s likely they were holding him out while Andy Dalton channeled his inner Geno Smith, but even hobbled, makes him a risky play. He’s pretty much the luxury version of Frank Gore this weekend if he does in fact play.

Tough to play anyone in the San Diego passing game as well due to what we know they want to do as an offense here. The fact that they have alluring options that have done something with limited opportunity make it difficult to shy away, but you should. Keenan Allen has caught four passes in a game just once in his past five, but has five touchdowns. Ladarius Green has just nine catches over his past six games but four are for touchdowns and he’s pushed his way into more playing time than Antonio Gates. You can chase either if you have the same hopes you’ll have with playing Rivers, but both are better left on the table.

By all means pay for Peyton is you want (he’s nearly 20 percent of your cap) but I’d prefer to play for arbitrage points by getting some of his receivers on my teams if I can. Welker is the cheapest of the receiver trio and will be back after a three game absence due to a concussion. Before then, he had scored in only two of his previous seven games and still hasn’t had a 100 yard game this season.

I probably will stay away from Decker since his mega hot run coincided with Welker being out. Decker was the number two scoring receiver over the final month, but was primarily running routes from the slot, something Welker will be back to doing. While he’s capable of a big game with Welker on the field (like his 4 TD game at Kansas City), he’s also has been known to go into lulls within the offense and carries too much risk at his cost.

Demaryius is costly, but is the best bet at big yardage and splash scores. His 12 receptions of 30 or more yards were only behind Josh Gordon and Jordy Nelson (14 each) and six of those resulted in touchdowns, trailing only Gordon’s seven. Julius Thomas is a decent option but kind of stuck in tight end purgatory, right in between the costs of Graham and Davis, giving you the option to pay up or down with similar ceilings. He’s scored in seven of his past ten but his receptions had plateaued at around three per game until Welker was lost.

Moreno was scaled way back for preservation over the final three weeks. After completely running away with the job in week four, he averaged 23.5 touches per game through week 14. In the season’s final three games, he had just 37 touches total as Montee Ball had 26. Its likely Ball falls back into a 7-9 touch guy this weekend. Moreno has just one 100 yard game surprisingly, but his real value comes from scoring opportunities created by the Denver offense and his underrated pass catching ability. He had four or more catches in eight games, including both against the Chargers. Just like Lynch, his salary padded due to a short slate, really forcing him to deliver if you take him.

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