Thursday Night Football DFS Preview: Lions at Packers

Source: USA Today

Thursday Night Football Preview

  • Spread: Lions -1.5
  • Over/Under 45.5
  • Implied Score: Lions 23.5 - Packers 22

The Lions travel to Green Bay in a big early-season matchup for sole possession of first place in the NFC North. While it was expected that Detroit would be a playoff contender this season, the Packers have played better than expected under the leadership of Jordan Love. Despite Green Bay averaging 26.7 points per game and Detroit scoring 24 per game, the total is relatively low. I'm a little surprised the Lions are favored in this game. I think a case can be made that the Packers are a top 12 team in the NFL right now. Although Detroit gains more yards, Green Bay is more efficient with their scoring. I think this will be a close game with just enough scoring to make several players on both team relevant. I have it 24-23, in favor of the Packers. . 

Showdown Strategy

This is an interesting game for a single slate. The total is about average and neither team is a heavy favorite. This means some my "automatic" strategies don't necessarily come into play. I think the Vegas line is reasonable, so I'm expecting a close game with a healthy amount of yards gained on the ground. Green Bay and Detroit are both in the top 10 in rushing play percentage, so I'm definitely adding the running backs from both team to my player pool. Although it's tricky because the status of Aaron Jones and David Montgomery for this game is still unknown. If Montgomery sits out again this week, then Craig Reynolds becomes a viable option for the Lions. If Jones doesn't play, the Patrick Taylor also becomes a good tournament play. 

As for the passing game, it would be hard not to roster Jared Goff. He's sixth in the league in passing yards, but four of the quarterbacks ahead of him are on pass-heavy teams. Goff has been very efficient and has the fourth highest "on target" percentage in the league. Jordan Love, on the other hand, has played better than most expected and ranks fourth in fantasy points among quarterbacks. He comes a nice discount, too. 

Both defenses have played well, but the Packers have been stronger against the pass. Detroit was terrible on the road last year, and even though they won in Kansas City in Week 1, they only scored 21 points in that game. I think Green Bay could keep the Lions' offense in check, so I'm prioritizing Packers receivers in this game. Most of my builds have been 3-3 or 4-2, depending on if I play a defense. 

Captain Choices (1.5x points, 1.5x salary)

Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, ($17,400)

Brown is a top option due to his consistent performance. He caught nine passes for 102 yards last week while playing with an injured toe. It looks like his injury is not going to affect his play very much. He's averaging almost 10 targets a game and has the highest ceiling of any player on the slate. 

Jordan Love, QB, Packers ($14,700)

Love has been consistent, earning at least 20 fantasy points in each start this season. His rushing upside him make an attractive Captain in a game with limited high-upside players. 

Romeo Doubs, WR, Packers ($13,200)

If Christian Watson is out, Doubs has a lot of upside. His five end zone targets are second in the NFL.  

Jahmyr Gibbs, RB, Lions ($14,400)

As a Captain choice, this depends on David Montgomery's availability. If Montgomery is out again, Gibbs will see a significant workload. If Montgomery does play, I would downgrade Gibbs to a Flex option. 


Flex Options

Luke Musgrave, TE, Packers ($6,400)

Both tight ends are in play, but Musgrave offers better value than Sam LaPorta, so I'm prioritizing him in my builds. 

Jared Goff, QB, Lions ($10,400)

Goff has a safe floor, if not much upside. I like playing both QBs, if possible. Goff is a must-start if you put St. Brown in the Captain spot. 

Aaron Jones, RB, Packers ($10,800), Christian Watson, WR, Packers ($8,200)

We're not sure yet if either will play, but I probably won't use them as anything more than a dart throw. Both are likely to be limited if they do play, making them very risky options. If Jones does play, it will lower my exposure to A.J. Dillon, who hasn't been very efficient in Jones' absence. 

Sam LaPorta, TE, Lions ($8,000)

LaPorta is seeing great usage early this season, leading the NFL in yards per route run. He's a good contrarian play for those willing to pay the extra $1600 over Musgrave. 

Jayden Reed, WR, Packers ($5,600)

I love Reed at this price. He has similar usage to Doubs, but costs $3,200 less. 

David Montgomery, RB, Lions ($6,800)

Montgomery is an intriguing value option if he plays. He had a significant workload in the first two games before missing last week. 

Patrick Taylor, RB, Packers ($3,000)

Taylor is a nice value play if Aaron Jones doesn't play. He nearly split snaps with A.J. Dillon last week and caught three passes. 

Samori Toure, WR, Packers ($600)

Toure received three targets on 21 routes last week, including an end zone target. If Watson remains out, Toure is a fine punt play in a large-field tournament.

Packers Defense ($3,600)

I like a home defense against a team that struggles on the road. 


My Lineup

  1. Captain: Jordan Love
  2. Flex: Amon-Ra St. Brown
  3. Flex: Jayden Reed
  4. Flex: Jared Goff
  5. Flex: David Montgomery
  6. Flex: Samori Toure

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