With real-life sports in the midst of an extended time out, DraftKings has been helping to fill the void with some very entertaining simulated sports action. Each day, there are six Madden Streams and eight free contests, with a single-game Showdown for each game along with a pair of classic contests. Each of the simulations is played out via an online Madden Stream using Madden 2020 with rosters and ratings from the end of the 2019-20 season. In this format, you can enjoy watching the game stream on the DK Live app or right here in this post. Follow along to watch your fantasy team rack up some big fantasy points.
Sunday afternoon’s 4 p.m. ET kickoff will take place in virtual Buffalo where the Bills welcome in the Bucs in the 30th sim matchup for each team. The Bills have struggled badly in these sims, going just 8-21, but they did pull off a big upset in their most recent game by knocking off their division-rival Patriots, who have the best record of any team in these sims. Tampa Bay also won its most recent contest which helped them to improve to 17-12 on the sim season. The Bucs were the final undefeated team earlier in the sim season but have since dropped to second place in the virtual NFC South. They’re on the fringe of the playoff picture and need to get this win in Buffalo. Can the Bills pull off another upset or will the Bucs get a nice road win? You can find my pick to win and my favorite fantasy selections for the single-game Showdown below.
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Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The most expensive player in this sim is Jameis Winston ($11,200), who is averaging a game-high 18.2 DKFP per sim. He has thrown 48 touchdowns in his 29 sims and is averaging over 250 yards per contest. He had a big game in his most recent sim with 335 yards and 24.4 DKFP against the Raiders and has bounced back from a run of extremely low production with three strong games. The Bills secondary has some elite players in Tre’Davious White and Micah Hyde, but they have also been beatable by short passes and TE, specifically.
The Bucs do have a very good TE in O.J. Howard ($7,400), who has been one of their most consistent producers. He had 101 yards against the Raiders in his most recent sim, giving him six games with the 100-yard bonus on the sim-season. He had 23.1 DKFP in that contest and has over 15 DKFP in threes straight. His 81 overall rating, 87 speed rating, and 83 catching rating have powered him to a very nice 13.5 DKFP per contest. He comes with a high ceiling in this good matchup and should definitely be a consideration for your lineup.
The other Bucs’ pass-catchers are loaded with talent and potential but have been less consistent than Howard. WR1 Mike Evans ($10,200) has an incredibly high ceiling with his 92 overall rating, highlighted by a 95 catch-in-traffic rating, a 97 release rating, a 95 jump and a 97 spectacular catch rating. He was held totally catchless, though, against Oakland after putting up 31 DKFP against Atlanta and 95 yards and 14.5 DKFP against the Seahawks. He can be boom-or-bust and with his potential matchup against White is a hard option to pay over $10K for. If you have the salary, the upside is there, but remember he can be extremely boom-or-bust. WR2 Chris Godwin ($7,800) has a strong 87 overall rating and the “Route Technician” Superstar ability, enabling him to have a high success rate when creating separation on the last cut of any route. He had over 100 yards against the Raiders while Evans was shutout and finished with 20.5 DKFP. He had been struggling, though, before that breakout performance and had his own catchless game against the Seahawks. Godwin only has eight touchdowns on the sim season while Evans has 13, so I’d prefer Evans if you have salary for either option, but both can be hit-or-miss depending on game flow. Those boom-or-bust tendencies also extend to WR3 Breshad Perriman ($5,000), who is a nice value with plenty of upside due to his 95 speed rating. He has exactly four catches and double-digit DKFP in each of his past two sims and should have the speed advantage in most of his matchups with the Bills.
In the backfield, the Bucs use a rotation that has taken most of the value away from RB1 Ronald Jones II ($7,000), who has a 77 overall rating. He did have over 100 yards and two touchdowns for 26.0 DKFP against the Raiders in his most recent sim but is still only averaging 7.9 DKFP per contest. Third-down back Dare Ogunbowale ($1,600) is always a great value play since he gets involved as either or rusher or receiver in almost every contest. He had two games in a row with exactly 13.4 DKFP before slowing down for just 2.7 DKFP against the Raiders since RoJo went off. Tampa also involves short-yardage power back Peyton Barber ($2,400) at times, but I prefer Dare since he gets more work as a PPR option.
The Buccaneers’ DST ($3,400) gets a good matchup against the Bills’ struggling offense, but they haven’t been much of an option with just 3.7 DKFP per sim. They do have 11 takeaways and 51 sacks in their 29 sims but don’t have a big-time playmaker who creates turnovers. I prefer K Matt Gay ($3,800), who is averaging 7.3 DKFP in his 29 sims and has at least seven DKFP in six of his past eight.
It hasn’t been a great sim season for the Bills, especially on offense, where they have struggled to consistently move the ball. Josh Allen ($11,000) has some raw talent, highlighted by his perfect 99 throw power rating and his 84 speed rating, but he has struggled with accuracy and low awareness and is averaging just 157.5 passing yards per sim. However, he saves his fantasy value in many contests with his work on the ground. He has rushed for just about 50 yards per sim and scrambled for 17 touchdowns in his 29 sims. He ran for a score and threw for a score against New England on Friday night and finished with 22.96 DKFP, giving him over 19 DKFP in seven of his past eight sims. Since he runs for so many scores, he’s the Bills’ fantasy option with the highest ceiling, but he does come at a high price of $11K.
When Allen has been on point with his passes, his WR options can have good games. John Brown ($9,400) had a solid contest against the Patriots with five catches for 86 yards and a touchdown on his way to 19.6 DKFP. He does have at least four catches in three in a row, and his 90 speed rating makes him a solid deep threat. Both Brown and WR2 Cole Beasley ($7,200) each have identical 83 overall ratings, but Beasley has been less consistent and doesn’t have as much to offer on deep routes, especially since he often works out of the slot. Tampa Bay has given up some big games to slot WR, so Beasley has some upside, but probably not quite as much as the other options available around his salary. Like the Bucs and Perriman, the Bills use a speed option as their WR3 in Robert Foster ($4,400), who has a 94 speed rating which gives him upside as a flier play although he hasn’t hit double figures in any of his past seven sims.
TE Tyler Kroft ($5,600) had a quiet game against New England with just two catches for 25 yards, breaking a streak of at least three catches in 21 straight of Kroft’s sims with a reception. He is averaging just under 10.0 DKFP per contest on the season and should bounce back against a Bucs’ D that has given up some big games to opposing TE. He’s a solid play if he gets the volume.
Devin Singletary ($8,600) is an intriguing option as well since he handles almost all the work in the Bills’ backfield. He has multiple catches out of the backfield in seven straight sims and over 8.0 DKFP in seven of his past nine contests. He has the potential to go off like he did for 26.3 DKFP against the Colts, and is involved enough to make sense if you think he’ll have a touchdown or two against Tampa.
The Bills DST ($3,600) definitely has playmakers with X-Factor CB Tre’Davious White and Superstar S Micah Hyde, and they’ll get a good matchup against Winston, who has a tendency to turn the ball over. They had five sacks against the Patriots and finished with 6.0 DKFP, giving them at least that many in three of their past four games. The secondary can pick the ball off with 14 interceptions in their 29 sims, but they probably won’t get a point bonus for shutting down the Bucs, since Tampa’s offense is usually potent. K Stephen Hauschka ($4,000) hasn’t been as good as Gay, so I’d go with the Bucs’ kicker if you’re getting one into your lineup in this matchup.
I think Josh Allen ($16,500 CP) is actually one of the better Captain’s Pick plays due to his work on the ground and recent run of success. The Bucs receivers have been hit-or-miss, so it’s hard to trust them despite their high ceilings. Instead, I’d go with O.J. Howard ($11,100 CP) as my favorite Captain’s Pick from Tampa Bay with Breshad Perriman ($7,500 CP) an intriguing value option if you want to stack up the higher-priced players in your flex spots.
Even though the Bills knocked off the Patriots, I still think they’ll be overmatched by the multiple options in the Bucs’ offense. One of the pass-catchers will likely have a big game and carry the Bucs to a road win, while I think the Bills will put up some points and run the ball well, but I just can’t trust the passing game after watching it struggle so often throughout their sims.
Final Score: Bucs 27, Bills 14
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is z.thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.