Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Tyler Eifert (neck) was held out of Thursday's practice as he continues to work his way back from a neck injury. Eifert was able to log just five offensive snaps last Sunday versus Detroit before being removed, which doesn't bode well for his shot at suiting up this Sunday against the Chargers. James O'Shaughnessy would take over a larger role should Eifert remain out, although the veteran logged 75 percent of the team's offensive snaps last week and saw just one target (with zero catches). With wide receivers DJ Chark Jr. (ankle) and Laviska Shenault Jr. (hamstring) joining Eifert on the injury report, Jacksonville may wind up facing a stingy Chargers Defense without its full allotment of offensive talent.
Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown (knee) popped up on the injury report Thursday after missing practice due to a knee ailment. Brown has already missed two games this season due to knee issues, so his latest injury development may not be insignificant. Since returning, Brown has hauled in 12 receptions for 140 yards and three touchdowns, making him a high-end WR2 in season-long formats moving forward. With Corey Davis and Adam Humphries both back in the mix, an absence from Brown would pave the way for the aforementioned duo to see increased roles Sunday against a stout Pittsburgh secondary. Check back throughout the week for updates on Brown's status as they become available.
Los Angeles Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr. (thigh) and tight end Tyler Higbee (hand) were both absent from Thursday's practice, throwing their status for Monday's game against Chicago into flux. This is the first of an injury concern for either, which could mean that the move was a precautionary one by the Rams with an extra day allocated for playing on Monday Night Football. Henderson appears to have wrestled full-time RB1 duties away from Malcolm Brown, thereby becoming a high-end RB2 in most season-long formats. Higbee has established a safe floor, making at least two receptions in each of his first six games, but he has logged more than three catches just once. The duo will have two additional days of potential practice to get in, so it's worth keeping an eye on their status until there's further clarification.
Green Bay Packers tight end Robert Tonyan (ankle) did not practice Thursday, marking yet another day that he was unable to return in any capacity ahead of Sunday's game versus Houston. Tonyan returned to play last Sunday against the Buccaneers and hauled in three receptions for 25 yards, but he has backtracked that progress by notching two consecutive DNPs. Having amassed five touchdowns over his first three games (including three in one contest), Tonyan has massive upside when given the green light to suit up, which would be the case if he can work through his ankle injury to play Sunday. Check back for an update to his status prior to Sunday.
Houston Texans tight end Jordan Akins (ankle, concussion) was held out of practice Thursday, a trend that indicates that he could miss his third consecutive game Sunday when his squad faces Green Bay. An absence by Akins would keep Darren Fells in season-long consideration as a low-end TE1 and as a high-upside selection in DFS contests, even as the Packers have yielded just one touchdown to opposing tight ends this year. Having hauled in 14 of the 15 balls that he has been targeted on this season for 168 receiving yards, Akins could become a consistent fantasy commodity whenever he's finally healthy. Check back over the coming days to see if he can make a drastic pivot in fortunes and take the field.
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Sammy Watkins (hamstring) once again did not practice Thursday, putting his status for Sunday's contest against Denver up in the air. Watkins was considered questionable to play Monday due to a hamstring injury, with Kansas City at least leaving the door open that he could have played; his extended practice absence may be a means of keeping him fresh for game action Sunday, but that remains unclear. Averaging a career-low 10.6 yards per reception through five games this season, Watkins would be a roll of the dice fantasy selection for season-long or DFS lineups Sunday even if he's able to recover in time. Check back throughout the week to monitor his status, as an absence from Watkins could pave the way for Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman to see increased roles.
Denver Broncos tight end Noah Fant (ankle) was able to practice in full Thursday, a significant step in the right direction concerning his availability for Sunday's contest against the Chiefs. Fant has missed each of Denver's two prior contests, with his return to practice on a full-time basis marking the first time in three weeks that he has had no restrictions. With Drew Lock also recovered from injury and back under center, Fant has some legitimate TE1 appeal in season-long formats, in addition to drawing some DFS upside due to the rapport that the two established last season. Having hauled in five receptions in three of his four games this season, Fant presents a solid floor in any-sized format.
The Buffalo Bills Defense gets the fortune of playing what is on track to be a decimated Jets offense Sunday. Joe Flacco is likely to start under center again for Sam Darnold (shoulder), while Jamison Crowder (groin) was held out of practice Thursday. But on their side of the ball, Josh Norman (hamstring) and Tre'Davious White (back) were both limited practice participants, joining Matt Milano (pectoral) as question marks to suit up Sunday. In season-long formats, the Bills defense is a definite must-roster, irrespective of the final status on White and Norman; but in DFS, absences from either or both could make the unit a slippery slope when considering it's sky-high price tag. Check back throughout the week for updates on the corner situation specifically.
For the second consecutive day Thursday, Jacksonville Jaguars wide receivers DJ Chark Jr. (ankle) and Laviska Shenault Jr. (hamstring) were both limited practice participants. Neither appears in any immediate danger of missing Sunday's contest against the Chargers, but their status is something to keep an eye on, even as Chark compiled a season-high 14 targets last Sunday. The duo makes up much of the fantasy intrigue at WR for the Jaguars, so an absence by either would thereby enhance the other's upside. Should Chark ultimately be cleared, he'd be a must-start in the vast majority of season-long formats, while Shenault continues to make a case for being rostered in medium-sized and smaller leagues. Check back over the coming days to see if their practice status progresses.
Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph is a name that multiple NFL teams have reportedly asked about ahead of the trade deadline on Nov. 3, according to Albert Breer of the MMQB. Minnesota has already moved defensive end Yannick Ngakoue to Baltimore, an indication that the organization could be open for making other shrewd moves that look beyond 2020. Rudolph's role in the passing game has diminished from where it has been over the past decade, as he's compiled just 14 targets (10 receptions) over his first six games this year. With essentially little season-long value currently attached, Rudolph could benefit from a change of scenery in an offense that would be hoping to highlight his red-zone abilities. Stay tuned to see if Rudolph changes uniforms as the deadline approaches.
New York Jets wide receiver Jamison Crowder (groin) did not take part in Thursday's practice as he continues to work his way through a groin ailment. The only steady offensive producer that the Jets have deployed this season, Crowder has seen double-digit targets in each of the four games that he has suited up for. His fantasy stock has taken a dip across the board with quarterback Joe Flacco filling in for Sam Darnold (shoulder), but Flacco and the Jets offense would become even more anemic if Crowder is ruled out Sunday against a stout Bills Defense. Crowder compiled seven receptions for 115 yards and a touchdown when he faced Buffalo back in Week 1, but his injury may make some fantasy managers reluctant to utilize him with the same vigor.
Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee (hernia) and cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring) have both been designated to come off of Injured Reserve as soon as this Sunday versus Washington. Lee has yet to suit up for the Cowboys Defense in 2020, having been sidelined due to a sports hernia. Awuzie played in two games, collecting an interception before hitting the IR. The eventual return of both players will be a boon for a defense that has struggled mightily this season. Even with a favorable matchup against Washington on Sunday, Dallas' defensive unit will have some work to do before it works its way into season-long consideration in most formats.
New Orleans Saints tight end Jared Cook was quarterback Drew Brees’ primary red-zone threat while wide receiver Michael Thomas remained sidelined, but with the All-Pro wideout expected back Sunday versus Carolina, Cook’s time as a TE1 in season-long formats may have passed. While Cook managed to receive seven targets in Week 1 when Thomas was alongside him, the veteran has been a touchdown-dependent option since then. In addition, the Panthers Defense has been stout against opposing tight ends this season, allowing just 221 yards and two touchdowns across six games. With a plethora of options at Brees’ disposal, Cook remains an appealing play, albeit a tenuous one that carries sizable risk.
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott was given a vote of confidence from head coach Mike McCarthy on Tuesday, confirming that the star running back would be the starter for Sunday’s contest against Washington. Elliott lost two fumbles Monday versus the Cardinals, ceding way to Tony Pollard at times, but with Andy Dalton once again to likely receive the start, Elliott will need to be relied upon for Dallas to have success offensively. Unfortunately for Elliott, the team’s offensive line is heavily banged up due to injuries. Factoring that in on top of his fumble woes (five in 2020, four of which have been lost), DFS fantasy managers may want to look elsewhere Sunday, especially considering his price tag. Season-long managers can continue to role Elliott out and bank on his perpetual upside paying off.
The Washington Football Team will be facing a Cowboys offensive line Sunday that has been decimated by injuries. With Tyron Smith (neck) already out, Dallas announced Tuesday that left tackle Brandon Knight (knee) already underwent surgery for a significant injury that he sustained Monday, necessitating a need for another new LT. In addition, Zack Martin (concussion), a traditional anchor of the line, is questionable to suit up in his own right. After some disappointing fantasy performances, the Washington defense is in a prime spot to break out against Andy Dalton, who scuffled mightily in his first start of the season. They will be a risk in medium-sized or smaller season-long formats, but should have some DFS appeal, especially for those targeting the early-only slate.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has made each of the five defenses that he has faced in 2020 look rather pedestrian on his way to becoming the favorite to claim the NFL’s MVP trophy this season. On paper, his matchup Sunday versus Arizona should be another such instance, which is backed up by his gaudy DFS price tag. But gleaning his numbers against the Cardinals over the past two seasons tells a different story; over their last four matchups, he has exceeded the 200-yard passing threshold just once and has not rushed for a touchdown in any of those outings. The Cardinals Defense ranks in the top half of the league in passing yards allowed per game this season (226.5), another reason why DFS managers may want to consider other QB options during Week 7 at Wilson's lofty price.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen (back) was last seen dealing with back spasms when he took the field versus the Saints last Monday. Despite that, head coach Anthony Lynn has reiterated that Allen will not be hampered come Sunday versus Jacksonville, a matchup that is set to work in Allen’s favor due to the 270.7 passing yards per game that the Jaguars Defense is allowing. With the emergence of Justin Herbert as both a downfield threat and consistent pocket passer, Allen’s season-long fantasy outlook is only on the rise after having averaged 12 targets through his first four games. His recent injury should give DFS fantasy managers pause, but so long as he is given the green light to suit up, season-long managers should consider starting him in most formats where he is rostered.
Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson should continue to see an unimpeded path to RB1 duties this Sunday against the Cardinals with both Carlos Hyde (shoulder) and Rashaad Penny (knee) unlikely to suit up. Carson was limited to just eight carries in his most recent outing, but that was primarily due to the nature of the game flow; fantasy managers can expect to see him rack up his usual workload and then some against Arizona. Having amassed three rushing and three receiving scores so far this season, Carson has retained a considerable role in the Seattle offense, with Travis Homer a distant second to cutting into his workload. Carson is a must-start in season-long formats and should have some considerable DFS appeal.
Las Vegas Raiders running back Josh Jacobs is likely fresh after having his week off, but that won’t change the fact that he’ll be squaring off with the NFL’s premier run-stuffing unit Sunday in the form of the Buccaneers Defense. Tampa Bay has yielded an average of just 64.3 rushing yards per contest to begin the year, while Jacobs has amassed an average of 75.4 all by himself. Having carried the ball an average of 21.2 times per game, season-long fantasy managers needn't shy away from Jacobs, but those eyeing him on the DFS market may want to tread lightly. Despite his five rushing scores, Jacobs has yet to compile a 100-yard game on the ground this season after having racked up five such performances as a rookie in 2019.
New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara costs a pretty penny in DFS for those fantasy managers who are attempting to slot him into lineups, and with good reason. Kamara is facing off against a Panthers Defense that ranks dead last in the NFL in DraftKings points per game allowed, making him arguably the top running back to target on the slate. Even with Michael Thomas (ankle) scheduled to return to the offense, Kamara should continue to see a sizable role as New Orleans makes the run game a primary focus. Looking ahead, he’ll face stouter competition in the form of Chicago and Tampa Bay over the following two weeks, yet he still remains one of the premier season-long fantasy assets due to his consistent pass-catching role.
Dallas Cowboys defensive end Randy Gregory is set to make his NFL return Sunday against Washington after he was removed from the commissioner’s exempt list Tuesday. Dallas immediately added the pass-rusher to its active roster, hoping to reclaim some of the six-sack production that he delivered for the team back in 2018. Gregory had been suspended indefinitely by the NFL in February ‘19 due to repeated violations of the league’s substance abuse policy, but is now cleared to return to action. Even with the pass-rushing stylings of Gregory in the mix, the Cowboys Defense cannot be counted upon as a fantasy asset after having allowed at least 34 points in each of their last six games. In the best-case scenario, the unit can be used as a contrarian DFS play in hopes of honing in on their sack upside.
Carolina Panthers safety Juston Burris (ribs) was placed on Injured Reserve on Tuesday but is expected to return at some point during the 2020 year. Burris has become an integral part of the Carolina secondary in his first season with the team, playing 100 percent of the defensive snaps in four of his first five games. Without Burris in the mix, Jeremy Chinn should see a step up in usage, while Kenny Robinson was signed off of the practice squad and Sean Chandler was brought in from the Giants. With matchups versus the Saints, Falcons and Chiefs over the next three weeks, the Panthers Defense provided little fantasy intrigue regardless. The next chance that Burris can rejoin the mix comes in Week 10 versus Tampa Bay.
New York Jets linebacker Frankie Luvu (groin) will be out for at least the next three games after being placed on Injured Reserve on Tuesday due to the groin injury that he sustained Sunday versus Miami. Luvu has accumulated seven tackles across six games this season, being used primarily on special teams. After having compiled 11 quarterback hits and three sacks back in 2018, Luvu has seen his role on defense take a step backward for a Jets Defense that merits essentially no fantasy consideration at this stage. With matchups against Buffalo and Kansas City coming up over the next two weeks, New York’s defense should undoubtedly remain on the waiver wire. Luvu’s next chance to suit up comes in Week 11 against the Chargers.
New York Giants linebacker Tae Crowder (hamstring) has been ruled out for at least the next three contests after he was placed on Injured Reserve on Tuesday due to a hamstring injury. Crowder delivered the game-winning touchdown during Sunday’s win over Washington on a 42-yard fumble recovery, and he has compiled 18 tackles over his first five career games. His absence will give the Giants Defense a hole in their depth at the linebacker position, but irrespective of Crowder’s presence, the unit does not likely merit much fantasy consideration at this stage. The next chance that Crowder has to suit up will be Week 10 against Philadelphia.
It was a circuitous route to get here, yet after a season chock full of potential landmines, the 2020 World Series kicks off Tuesday night. After a pair of thrilling Game 7’s left it feeling like it could have easily been the Astros and Braves taking to the diamond to crown the sport’s best in a season unlike any other in history, we get the analytically-minded Rays squaring off with the title-deprived Dodgers in a collision of baseball’s premier squads.
With that comes the fact that multi-game slates, they’re done; kaput. Pitchers? They’re out, too, at least on FanDuel. Instead, we’ve got FD’s version of what they rolled out for the NBA Finals, headlined by an “MVP” and a “STAR.” Price tags don’t change for any of these roles, so there’s less salary cap maneuvering and more slotting in each individual fantasy managers’ favorite bats.
This article will provide you with my daily fantasy baseball lineup picks for DraftKings on 10/20/20. The lineup picks will range from some of the elite players to mid-priced options and value plays. Be sure also to check out all the Vegas Odds for today's slate. You can also read more DFS advice and lineup picks for sites like FanDuel, and other sports. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to hit me up on Twitter @davithius.
FanDuel DFS MVP Selections
Randy Arozarena, TAM @ LOS ($8,500)
With stagnant price tags, if you’re keen to roster Arozarena, it’s virtually improbable to not see him in the MVP or Star slot. His first taste of the postseason has been historic with seven home runs already to his credit, while he closes in on the record for most hits in a playoffs by a rookie. Facing Clayton Kershaw is a less than optimal head-to-head showdown, but surprisingly, it’ll be Kershaw who will have to adjust to Arozarena’s staggering output, a turn of fortune that would have been inconceivable before the playoff bubbles were arranged. Having amassed a 1.288 OPS in 55 postseason at-bats, getting the Rays’ breakout star at a price tag that is third-highest on the board is undoubtedly worth consideration.
FanDuel DFS STAR Selections
Mookie Betts, LOS vs. TAM ($9,000)
Much in the same ilk as Arozarena, those eyeing Betts are likely to slot him in at one of the additional bonus slots, making the Dodgers’ wunderkind two-way star a sound choice at Star. Set to square off against Tyler Glasnow to begin the proceedings for L.A., Betts shouldn’t be wary of Glasnow’s limited pitch mix, as the Dodgers’ leadoff batter mashed heaters to a .620 SLG during the regular season, accounting for 20 extra-base hits. Of course, Glasnow is a different breed of heater in his own right, but Betts retains top shelf value due to his spot in the order and propensity for scampering around the basepaths. With stacks somewhat antiquated from a DFS perspective, taking the best bat available is always a method worthy of consideration.
FanDuel DFS Utility Selections
Justin Turner, LOS vs. TAM ($7,000)
Coming into the NLCS, Turner’s bat was uncharacteristically silent. Yet, over the seven games, he played an unheralded role in providing consistent production out of the No. 3 spot, scoring a run in each of the last five contests. Collecting 10 total bases and three walks in that span, Turner has been the catalyst at the heart of the Dodgers’ order and finds his price tag either alongside true boom-or-bust selections or below bats that have been scuffling as of late. The last time Turner played in the World Series, he reached base at a .385 clip.
Hunter Renfroe, TAM @ LOS ($6,000)
Renfroe didn’t exactly hit left-handed pitchers with consistency during the regular season, producing a .146 average. So why are we discussing him, you may ask? He walloped five home runs against southpaws over the 60-game slate before socking a grand slam in the postseason. During 2020, Renfroe has delivered a .669 xSLG on fastballs from lefties and a .525 mark against breaking pitches. The five-player nature of the Game 1 slate means that for as coveted as points will be, there will need to be an upside play somewhere, and Renfroe is a sound bat to target for those interested in such a strategy.
Mike Brousseau, TAM @ LOS ($4,500)
It took all of one day of World Series action for the Brosseau versus lefties recommendation to appear. Any frequenter of DFS columns here at RotoBaller knows our staff’s general affinity for Brosseau when facing a lefty, and with good reason -- he produced a 1.121 OPS against left-handers in 2020; then come the postseason, he blasted a homer off Aroldis Chapman to advance his club to the ALCS. With his price tag held in check by his platoon-capped playing time, Brosseau should benefit from -- if nothing else -- facing Kershaw at least twice. The Rays’ utility infielder would derive considerable upside from batting leadoff, which manager Kevin Cash may opt to deploy. (Manuel Margot could also earn those honors, in which case, he too could be in play.)
RotoBaller Sample DFS Lineups
Sample FanDuel Lineup
Please note that these are sample lineups designed only to show how you might use the above lineup picks in your own lineup. You should always check the weather and lineups before they lock to ensure players you are choosing are playing tonight.
MLB DFS News and Injury Alerts
Denver Broncos tight end Noah Fant (ankle) and wide receiver K.J. Hamler (hamstring) could both potentially return to play in Sunday’s contest versus Kansas City after missing last Sunday’s outing due to respective injuries, per head coach Vic Fangio. Fant is the more fantasy relevant of the two, having established a considerable rapport with Drew Lock last season. Fant has hauled in five receptions in three of his four appearances this year, combining for 219 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Hamler’s first two contests saw him receive 12 targets, which bodes well for his fantasy upside should he ultimately suit up. Check back throughout the week for updates on both players, whose return would knock Jerry Jeudy’s appeal down a notch.
Cleveland Browns tight end David Njoku is hoping to have a new home prior to the NFL trade deadline on Nov. 3 after once again reportedly asking to be traded. Njoku has been lightly used in the passing game this season by the Browns, hauling in five receptions for 63 yards and one touchdown. Back in 2018, Njoku was a staple of the passing game, amassing 639 receiving yards while starting 14 contests. This season, however, the presence of Austin Hooper has knocked Njoku out of fantasy consideration. What could spark that intrigue again would be a new situation, with teams such as the Eagles and Patriots presumably having a need at the position heading into the second half of the season.
New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (shoulder) is trending toward a third consecutive absence Sunday when his team takes on the Bills, as head coach Adam Gase was not optimistic Monday that his signal-caller would clear the necessary stages to get back on the field. It seems likely that New York will stick with veteran Joe Flacco for the game in the event that Darnold is unavailable, even as the Jets were shut out Sunday by Miami. So long as Flacco is under center, New York’s offense can be targeted by fantasy managers attempting to stream opposing defenses. In Week 8, that will be the Bills Defense. Even upon his return, Darnold will be in a rough spot from a fantasy perspective due to the Jets offensive-line woes and general downturn in production from their skill position players.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receivers Alshon Jeffery (foot) and DeSean Jackson (hamstring) were both listed as limited practice participants Monday ahead of Thursday’s contest versus the Giants. Both receivers were out of the equation Sunday against Baltimore, with Jackson already expected to suit up come Thursday. As for Jeffery, he would be making his season debut after working his way back from a Lisfranc injury. Having either back in the mix would be a boon for Carson Wentz, who will be without Zach Ertz (ankle) for the foreseeable future. Travis Fulgham has become a breakout fantasy sensation over the past three weeks, and while his stock would take a dip with Jeffery or Jackson back, any of the three are season-long options against a shaky Giants secondary.
New York Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton (foot) would have been a limited participant in Monday’s practice after having sustained a foot injury during Sunday’s contest versus Washington. Slayton hauled in his first touchdown since Week 1 in the game, but came down awkwardly on his foot after the grab. With little time to recover before Thursday’s outing against the Eagles, the fact that he would have been able to practice in any capacity bodes well for his odds of suiting up. Fantasy managers interested in Slayton will want to keep an eye on Sterling Shepard’s (toe) status as well, as the latter returning to the mix would zap some of Slayton’s intrigue, even if he were fully healthy.