March 26, 2019

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PyromaniacMo's Spreading the Lines Of Fantasy for Week 11 - Vegas Implied Point Totals

Spreading the Lines of Fantasy - Week 11 (2018)

Posted by PyromaniacMo on 11/15/18

by   The Archer


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This weekly piece is intended to shed light on two primary factors that can weigh heavily upon your fantasy football decision making. Basically, we want to use Vegas in a helpful, predictive way. The first advantage to be gained exposes teams that are likely to be amongst the highest scoring of the week. Obviously, the more touchdowns a team puts up, the more fantasy points those players will have. For this, we will look at implied team totals. Generally, any team with an opening implied team total over 24 is one to pay attention to: The higher the number, the greater their chance for scoring.


So, now that we have identified the hottest teams of the week, we want to prognosticate even further and decide which positions, on those teams, will get the most opportunity to score. Does Vegas tell us a high scoring team will likely be playing with a lead? In other words, are they heavy favorites? If this is the case, then such a positive game-script indicates more rushing attempts. Thus, we want RBs on those teams. If Vegas expects a high scoring team to be on the losing end of a shoot-out, in other words a team is predicted to play from behind, this tells us to expect more of a passing attack. So, we should see a ground attack for big favorites and a passing game for the big under-dogs.


That’s it. In essence, we are looking for high implied team totals and an indication as to which positions will likely get the most opportunity to score those points. 

Final note, I used to use opening lines. However, these would come out before the completion of the previous week’s games. Therefore, the line movement in the first days after opening would often change due to a team’s performance, injuries, etc. While a great deal of line movement later in the week primarily comes from betting trends. So, the lines reflected in the chart, come from Tuesday. This way, the spreads have been determined AFTER all of the previous week’s games and BEFORE the betting public influences line movement. There is no perfect answer here, but this way, I feel it captures the most accurate reflection of what Vegas has to offer without the clouding caused by the betting public and book makers adjusting the line in order to offset public money. In essence, the lines here ideally reflect what Vegas thinks without interference from betting trends. 


One quick note – While this chart primarily reveals game script plays, I make will make format based calls. Remember the stark discrepancies between dynasty, redraft, and DFS. Keep in mind these are different formats. Case in point, you are going to play McCaffrey in Week 10 in redraft, but he is not a great DFS play. So while for the most part, players are mentioned on a predictive game-script/usage basis, I will go a little further from time to time and discuss specific formats. 


Week 11 Spreading The Lines of Fantasy Chart


The Steelers are road favorites by 5.5. This suggests a heavy run game for Pittsburgh. Even though Jacksonville has looked tough against RBs as of late; Conner is matchup proof. Looking a little closer, the Jags have seen 4 opposing backs run the ball at least 18 times. Of those 4 instances, 3 have gone for triple-digit yardage days against them on the ground. As for Conner, he has been given at least 18 carries 5 times this season. He is batting 100%. In each of those 5 games, the man has put up at least 100 yards on the ground. So, this makes Conner a high floor play this week. Not only that, both of Jacksonville’s right defensive tackles are currently listed as Questionable. It should be a good day for Conner. On Draft Kings, he is one of the better values at just $7200.


Vegas has Baltimore as 4 point favorites. They are home to the Bengals. The over/under is off because of the lack of clarity at the Ravens QB position. Flacco is a huge question mark. Not only that, we don’t know if it will be RGIII or, my man, Lamar Jackson. Jackson himself is listed as Questionable. Truth be told, they have plenty of packages just for Lamar. One could easily see BOTH of these backup QBs get action. Collins should be a nice play, but the cloud surrounding the QB position makes me leery. That said, both these teams play fast. In fact, they rank in the top 10 for average seconds per play. When you adjust for schedule, the Bengals rank 31st in standard scoring for opposing RBs. He has scored 4 TDs in his last 4 games. The ceiling is not great, but he has a decent floor and should see more opportunities than normal. I sure would feel a heck of a lot better about it if the Ravens came out and said Lamar Jackson was their guy. That is not likely, which makes Collins a GPP play at best in DFS.


The Tampa Bay Bucs travel to face the Giants. Amazingly, this is just 1 of 3 games expected to score more than 50 points. This is unusual in this year of scoring. The Giants have an implied team total of 26.75. That makes Eli a play in DFS as he is only $5200. I like getting in a cheap QB in order to pay up for RBs and WRs. He is a streaming option in redraft leagues. Tampa only has 1 INT this season, fewest in the league. Only 6 teams have fewer sacks, so Eli should be far safer than we are accustomed to. On the season, Tampa has allowed the 4th most fantasy points per game to opposing gunslingers. Besides Alex Smith, every single QB has gone for over 20 fantasy points against the Bucs, and that includes Nick Foles. The Giants are running at the 12th fastest clip and the Bucs run at the 6th fastest. This means there should be more plays than normal, and thus, players will have more opportunities to put up fantasy points. Barkley is a great play. He has a solid floor and always the possibility of busting one for a big gain. OBJ is always in play, and Evans is coming off a decent game. Tampa is ranked as 30th against opposing TEs according to Football Outsiders. You have to love Fitz Magic. However, there is always worry about turnovers. That said, the Giants have the 2nd fewest sacks on the season. Only 8 teams have fewer INTs. This makes Fitz, a player with a tendency towards turnovers, more attractive than one may think. Besides OJ Howard, his pass catchers can be tough to call. Humphries is getting the second most usage behind Evans. You are avoiding Tampa’s ground game altogether. 


Carolina should face a positive game script against the Lions. While you want to get in McCaffrey, Cam could have a tougher day than normal. The Lions have allowed the fewest rushing yards to opposing QBs. However, they are allowing the 4th most yards to RBs, which makes me want to pivot away from Cam towards McCaffrey. If you want a GPP dart throw, Jarius Wright will face possibly the worst slot corner in Detriot’s Teez Tabor. He carries the lowest grade of all starting CBs this week according to PFF. Detroit will face a negative game script. Both these teams are slower than most, so I am not holding my breath for big numbers. Still, Carolina has allowed the 5th most FF Pts to opposing QBs this season. Football Outsiders ranks Carolina 25th against opposing WR 2s. While the season has not turned out like we thought for Kenny Golladay, I like the matchup here, and his talent is just too evident not to bet on. Plus, Marvin Jones and their top 2 TEs are all listed as Questionable. If indeed they are short-handed, Golladay should see an increase in targets.


The Chargers have a great game script for RBs and thus, Melvin Gordon. With a 7 point spread, 2nd highest of week 11, the Chargers should get up quickly and look to run the ball on Denver. While Denver has been mostly solid, they have allowed huge games to big backs: Gurley, Crowell, and Hunt. These guys have all seen triple-digit yardage days against Denver. In fact, 2 of the 3 have gone for over 200 yards. When opposing backs have had at least 15 carries against Denver, they average 5.83 YPC. Gordon is, as always, great fantasy play. He once in 2018 has Gordon NOT been given at least 15 carries. As stated, when teams keep running the ball against Denver, their D seems to wear down and give up the yardage. 


Oakland has been a disaster and with David Johnson looking like the DJ of old under new OC Leftwich, this could be a big day for Johnson. Oakland has given up the 8th most PPR points in the last 3 weeks to opposing PPR backs. 10 different RBs have had double-digit PPR days against the Raiders. Arizona is home and favored by 5. However, they are capped as Vegas is only predicting the Cardinals to score 22.75 points. Still, DJ is a good play and has been coming on as of late. Larry Fitz should also be on your radar. Larry Fitzgerald has ranked WR25 in the last 5 weeks in PPR scoring. He has a string of 3 double-digit fantasy PPR days in his last 3 games. He will face Nick Nelson. According to PFF grading, only 10 starting CBs have a lower grade in Week 11.


Finally, clear your schedules for Monday night. KC is facing the Rams. This game is on the rise according to Vegas. The over/under opened at 59.5 and has since risen to 63.5. Amazingly, BOTH teams have an implied team total north of 30 points. If this game lives up to the hype, this could be one of the biggest offensive showcases we have seen in recent memory. I, for one, cannot wait!






PyromaniacMo with a Founder's


By: PyromaniacMo


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