Yahoo DFS Football: Wild Card Picks
Yahoo DFS Football: Wild Card Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Football series.

Whether or not you found DFS success during the NFL regular season, Yahoo! will give you a chance to add to your winnings with contests throughout the playoffs. The first postseason contest encompasses the four games from the Wild Card Round, which begins Saturday at 4:35 PM Eastern time. Among the options primed to pop this weekend are a couple of workhorse running backs and Indianapolis' top connection in the passing game.

TOURNAMENTS (GPP – GUARANTEED PRIZE POOL)

QB: Lamar Jackson, BAL vs. LAC ($25): Jackson has game-changing speed at the quarterback position, and he's used it to rack up 67 or more rushing yards in six of his seven NFL starts, along with four rushing touchdowns in that stretch. He's also learned to limit mistakes as a passer, posting a 4:0 TD:INT over the final four weeks. Jackson should get plenty of rushing attempts regardless of game flow, so he's like a low-end quarterback and a high-end running back rolled into one player at just $25.

RB: Chris Carson, SEA at DAL ($25): Those who rode Carson down the stretch in their fantasy leagues are encouraged to go right back to him in the postseason. The workhorse running back carried the ball 22.5 times per game over the final four contests, racking up at least 116 rushing yards in three of those games and 90 in the other. He also found the end zone in each contest, totaling five touchdowns during that torrid stretch. Some owners might have doubts against a fifth-ranked Dallas run defense that surrendered only 94.6 rushing yards per game, but it's tough to argue against Carson given how reliant the Seahawks have been on establishing the run with him.

WR: Keenan Allen, LAC at BAL ($25): It's not easy to trust any of the Chargers against a Ravens defense that allowed the fifth-fewest passing yards (210.0) and second-fewest points (17.9) per game this season, but Allen's been so consistent that he might just overcome this difficult matchup. His only game with fewer than 57 receiving yards came all the way back in Week 3, and Allen found the end zone five times in the season's final seven games. While this choice certainly goes against the grain, much stranger things have happened in the playoffs before.

Other Against-the-Grainers

QB: Mitchell Trubisky (CHI, $29)
RB: Marlon Mack (IND, $22); Gus Edwards (BAL, $17)
WR: Tyler Lockett (SEA, $18); Mike Williams (LAC, $18)
TE: Blake Jarwin (DAL, $13)
DST: Baltimore Ravens ($16)

CASH GAMES (H2H, 50/50s and DOUBLE UPS)

Quarterback

Andrew Luck, IND at HOU ($35)

While these two NFC South rivals split three-point decisions, Houston had no answer for Luck in either meeting this season. He threw for a season-high 464 yards and four touchdowns when they first faced off, then added his second-highest passing yardage total of the campaign (399) in their subsequent matchup. Luck was no slouch against other competition, either, as his 4,593 yards and 39 touchdowns were good for fifth and second in the NFL, respectively, and are both tops among the quarterbacks playing on this slate.

Running Back

Jordan Howard, CHI vs. PHI ($20)

The Bears' formula in this one will likely revolve around trying to jump out to an early lead, then relying on their running game and dominant defense (more on that unit below). With 100 rushing yards or a touchdown in each of the season's final four games (323 yards, four touchdowns in all), Howard is primed to play his part in turning that vision into a success. If he can reach either benchmark here, Howard would be a strong pick at $20.

Wide Receiver

Amari Cooper, DAL vs. SEA ($27)

Cooper was a beast after coming over to the Cowboys in a midseason trade, racking up 53 catches for 725 yards and six touchdowns in nine games with Dallas. Those numbers translate to 94 catches for 1,289 yards and 11 touchdowns over a full, 16-game campaign, showing that he can be treated as a true No. 1 wide receiver heading into this home playoff contest. With Seattle likely to key on stopping Ezekiel Elliott on the ground, Cooper should find plenty of room to operate.

T.Y. Hilton, IND at HOU ($28)

The driving force behind Luck's success against the Texans this season has been their inability to slow down the quarterback's favorite target. Hilton racked up 314 receiving yards in their pair of meetings, accounting for two of the five games in which he topped 100 receiving yards this season. If you're rolling with Luck here, it only makes sense to maximize your upside by locking in Hilton as well and watching the big plays pile up come Saturday.

Tight End

Zach Ertz, PHI at CHI ($24)

Don't overthink this one, especially with Ertz not even listed as the most expensive tight end on this slate. Philadelphia's not likely to get much going on the ground against Chicago's top-ranked run defense, and the man who set a new record for catches by a tight end with 116 this season is likely to vacuum up all the targets he can handle in the passing game. Through sheer volume if nothing else, Ertz is the one Eagles player with a clear path to putting up strong numbers here.

Defense/Special Teams

Chicago Bears, CHI vs. PHI ($20)

This unit should be worth paying up for if you're able to do so. Led by Khalil Mack, the Bears averaged a robust 11.7 fantasy points per game during the regular season and are primed to exceed that number in front of what will be a rocking Soldier Field crowd. With no Carson Wentz (back) under center for the Eagles and replacement Nick Foles battling a rib injury of his own, there's no wonder why the Bears are easily the biggest favorites of any team in the Wild Card Round with a 5.5-point spread.

Honorable Mentions

QB: Deshaun Watson (HOU, $36)
RB: Ezekiel Elliott (DAL, $38); Lamar Miller (HOU, $19)
WR: Allen Robinson (CHI, $20); DeAndre Hopkins (HOU, $34)
TE: Mark Andrews (BAL, $13)
DST: Seattle Seahawks ($16)

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.
RotoWire Community
Join Our Subscriber-Only NFL Chat
Chat with our writers and other RotoWire NFL fans for all the pre-game info and in-game banter.
Join The Discussion
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sasha Yodashkin
Sasha Yodashkin writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire
SXM Highlights: Should Bengals Tear It Down & Rebuild?
SXM Highlights: Should Bengals Tear It Down & Rebuild?
Staff Picks: Backing the Chiefs
Staff Picks: Backing the Chiefs
Beating the Book: Chris Liss Handicaps the Conference Title Games
Beating the Book: Chris Liss Handicaps the Conference Title Games
Yahoo DFS Football: Conference Championship Picks
Yahoo DFS Football: Conference Championship Picks
SXM Highlights: Kyler Murray's Dynasty League Rookie Draft Ranking
SXM Highlights: Kyler Murray's Dynasty League Rookie Draft Ranking
SXM Highlights: AFC Championship Game Early Line Breakdown
SXM Highlights: AFC Championship Game Early Line Breakdown