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.
Tuesday’s 2 p.m. ET matchup is an interesting one between the Broncos and the Dolphins as we start the 31st matchup for each of the teams in these sims. The Broncos are in action for the second day in a row after losing a close game to Dallas on Monday and dropping to 14-16 on the season. They’ll look to bounce back with a trip to Miami, where they’ll take on the 11-19 Dolphins. The Dolphins have been inconsistent, but have also proven themselves capable of pulling off some upsets with wins over the Packers, Jets, Eagles and Titans. Can they hand the Broncos their second straight loss or will Denver be able to bounce back and get back to just below .500 before we start our second trip through the league? You can find my pick to win and my favorite fantasy selections for the single-game Showdown below.
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The Broncos’ offense has been hit-or-miss in their 30 sims, but comes with good upside against Miami’s low-rated defense. I’d actually start my look at the Broncos’ offense with their RB1 and third-down RB Phillip Lindsay ($9,000), who has an 85 overall rating to go with his 93 speed rating and 88 elusiveness rating. He has been one of the better contributors all sim-season for the Broncos and has a good matchup against the Dolphins, who have been run on in many of their sims. Lindsay has over 14 DKFP in each of his past two contests and is now averaging 13.1 DKFP per sim. He showed his high ceiling with a 41.1-DKFP performance against the Lions and definitely has the potential to have a big game against the Dolphins front seven. If the gameflow goes his way, he has huge upside since Denver loves to lean on him as both rusher and receiver when playing from ahead.
Having a good running game has been a big boost for rookie QB Drew Lock ($10,400), who has done a good job outplaying his 68 overall rating. He has shown a high ceiling in a few sims but for the most part has been a letdown lately. He did have over 22 DKFP in two of his past 10 games but also posted under 10 DKFP in four of those contests. Despite the ceiling, I’m looking on the other side of this matchup for passing success since I think Lindsay will carry the load.
When he does have success through the air, Lock’s go-to options have been WR Courtland Sutton ($10,800) and TE Noah Fant ($6,400), who are both averaging over 10 DKFP per sim. Sutton has a decent 84 overall rating to go with an underwhelming 89 speed rating. However, he has a very high 73 strength rating, a 92 catching rating, a 92 catching in traffic rating and a 93 spectacular catching rating. Those traits make him a very solid option on possession-style routes and a nice red zone option. He has 20 touchdowns in his 30 sims and definitely has the potential to go off like he did for 27.7 DKFP a few sims ago against the Eagles. Despite the upside, he does come with risk since he could get matched up with Xavien Howard, the Dolphins’ one player with Superstar traits.
Fant should have a better machup and is much cheaper despite averaging just under 50 yards per sim. He actually has an 89 speed rating that matches Sutton and puts him as the second-fastest TE in all of Madden. He has had a few shutouts over the season but has at least four catches in exactly four catches in each of his past three sims with double-digit DKFP in each of his past two.
As value plays, DaeSean Hamilton ($5,600) and Tim Patrick ($4,000) have had their moments. They both have identical 70 overall ratings and can be considered for your lineup. Of the two, I’d lean toward Hamilton in this matchup since the Dolphins have been beatable by slot WR, but Patrick does help your salary cap situation and has virtually identical production.
On the other side of the ball, the Broncos’ DST ($4,400) is also a nice source of value with playmakers in its defensive backfield in X-Factor Superstar Chris Harris and Superstar Justin Simmons. They have 63 sacks and 14 takeaways in their 30 sims and have been especially aggressive on the road, where they have 43 sacks in 15 games compared to just 20 sacks in 15 home games. If you need even more value options, K Brandon McManus ($3,800) can make sense with his 76 overall rating and 6.4 DKFP per contest average, although I prefer the DST’s ceiling in this matchup with Miami.
While the Broncos have some elite options in their secondary, they do lack depth, especially at CB, so there should be some matchups Miami can exploit. One that I’m avoiding, though, is DeVante Parker ($9,800), even though his 84 overall rating is the highest on the team. He has been pretty solid with his 91 speed rating, averaging 14.0 DKFP per contest. The reason I’m passing, though, is that Chris Harris Jr. typically locks down the top WR for the other team and has limited top options like DeAndre Hopkins and Michael Thomas in his recent sims. He didn’t even give up a catch to Thomas, who has a perfect 99 overall rating. Parker does have upside, but I like the other Miami receiving options better.
If Harris does take Parker out of play, Albert Wilson ($7,800) could be the player to focus on. He costs a lot more than we’ve seen recently, but I still think he’s worth a look due to the matchup. Wilson typically plays the slot receiver role even though he is the WR2. He has a 91 overall speed rating which gives him a high ceiling that we’ve seen with back-to-back games over 27 DKFP earlier in our sims. Wilson has the speed to make big plays but can also disappear in some matchups, but I don’t think this game sets up for that to happen. The other Dolphins’ WR in a good spot should be Jakeem Grant ($4,800), who has a blazing 96 speed rating. He has been boom-or-bust in these sims and has at least 11.9 DKFP in six of his past seven sims. Grant is actually a safer option than Wilson given his much more affordable salary, but perhaps the higher salary on Wilson will help his ownership stay a bit lower.
Another favorite target in the passing game has been TE Mike Gesicki ($8,000), who is averaging 11.4 DKFP per sim and has exactly three catches in each of his past five games. He can go off for even bigger numbers at times, and he is more reliably involved than Wilson or Grant. Gesicki’s solid 79 overall rating is enhanced by an 85 catching rating and an 85 spectacular catching rating which are enough to make him a solid play in this matchup.
All the above options will need good play from Ryan Fitzpatrick ($11,200) to find success against the Broncos. Fitz has averaged 16.3 DKFP per sim and has been a very volatile option from game to game. Some games he looks awful, like when he managed just 5.68 DKFP against the Rams in his most recent home sim. However, in other games he has out-played his 74 overall rating and piled up fantasy points, like when he hung 32.52 DKFP on the Texans in his previous home matchup. Fitz should have some good mismatches if he focuses on Wilson and Grant, so I actually like him as the better QB play in this contest.
The Miami backfield is a timeshare that has limited the value of both Kalen Ballage ($6,800) and Patrick Laird ($2,600). Ballage has only averaged 5.1 DKFP per sim and is a hard pass for me at his 70 overall rating. Laird can be a solid value, though since he is both the power back and third-down back and has averaged 7.1 DKFP per sim. He has over 7.0 DKFP in four straight sims and is the top cheap play on the board in this Showdown contest.
I’m passing on the Dolphins special teams and defensive options in this matchup since I prefer the Broncos’ options.
The mismatches on each side point to Phillip Linsday ($13,500 CP) doing most of the work for the Broncos and Ryan Fitzpatrick ($16,800 CP) being able to move the ball through the air, specifically to Albert Wilson ($11,700 CP) and Jakeem Grant ($7,200 CP). Since that’s how I expect the game script to play out, I’d definitely start my lineup with one of those options and fill in the others as flex plays as much as possible. TEs Noah Fant ($9,600 CP) and Mike Gesicki ($12,000 CP) should also get good utilization. I like the Broncos DST and Laird as my value plays if you need to save some salary in your flex spots.
This should be a good game and will be an interesting contrast in styles. The Broncos love to run the ball while the Dolphins air it out more, and those strengths actually match up with the vulnerability of the defense they’ll be going against. Ultimately, the Broncos’ DST could be the difference with a big play or two down the stretch, especially if they’re able to get regular pressure on Fitzpatrick.
Final Score: Broncos 24, Dolphins 21
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.