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NFL DFS Showdown picks, lineup strategy for Chargers vs. Raiders on Thursday Night Football in Week 15

Chet Gresham takes you through their picks and approach DraftKings Showdown contests for Chargers vs. Raiders on TNF in Week 15 of the 2023 NFL season.

Zamir White #35 of the Las Vegas Raiders runs the ball during the fourth quarter against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Orchard Park, New York. Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders matchup in Vegas on Thursday night in Week 15. Neither team is having a good season, while the Chargers just lost their star quarterback Justin Herbert to a finger injury. Backup Easton Stick will take over, while rookie Aiden O’Connell will captain the Raiders at home.

With the change at QB for Los Angeles, the 5-8 Raiders are 3-point favorites against the 5-8 Chargers. The last time these two met, the Chargers won 24-17 with Herbert at the helm.

Injuries to look out for

Keenan Allen, WR, Chargers

Allen is out with a heel injury. That leaves Josh Palmer, Quinten Johnston, Alex Erickson and Jalen Guton as the top wide receivers on the team.

Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders

Update: Jacobs won’t play tonight, per Ian Rapoport.

Update: It appears that Josh Jacobs’ status is “very much in doubt” for this matchup, which would elevated Zamir White ($4,500/$3,00) and Ameer Abdullah ($7,200/$4,800). Both are worthy of being in your lineups, but White would become a must play at his price.

At this point it doesn’t look like Jacobs will play after not practicing Monday or Tuesday. Zamir White and Ameer Abdullah would have some value if he misses.

Josh Palmer, WR, Chargers

It looks like Palmer will play on Thursday, but could be eased back from his knee injury, making him risky, especially with a backup QB throwing him the ball.

NFL DFS Showdown strategy: Chargers vs. Raiders

Captain’s Picks

Austin Ekeler, RB, Chargers ($16,500/$11,000)

Coming into last week’s game against the Broncos, Brandon Staley said that they weren’t getting enough out of their running back position and that they’d give the non-Ekeler backs a shot. That ended up being true, as we saw more Isaiah Spiller than usual, but we also saw that Ekeler was still their best back despite his poor numbers this season.

Ekeler had just 10 carries, but did well with those for 55 yards and a touchdowns, and caught 5-of-7 targets for 49 more yards. No other Chargers back caught a pass, and in the end, Ekeler showed that he is still their best option. Now with Stick at QB, he will likely look to Ekeler as a security blanket.

Davante Adams, WR, Raiders ($16,800/$11,200)

Adams isn’t getting the QB play he needs to be his usual self, but he’s still a great player and the leading target getter on the team. With Jacobs not 100%, Adams should see plenty of targets. Even last week, when the team scored no points in an excruciating game against the Vikings, Adams had seven receptions for 53 yards. He’ll get his work without fail.

FLEX Options

Gerald Everett, TE, Chargers ($5,200)

Update: Donald Parham is inactive. That should help Everett see an increase in snaps and hopefully targets. I like him even more as a flex play now.

Everett has come on a bit of late with four or more receptions in his last three games. He has one touchdown in that stretch and probably would need one in this game to truly pay off. The Raiders do rank 8th-worst against tight ends in DVOA and with Keenan Allen out, we can expect Everett to see a big boost in work.

Hunter Renfrow, WR, Raiders ($4,000)

Renfrow has seen an increase of work of late, but not by a lot. The good news is that he is bringing in the targets he does see, so over the last three weeks he’s caught 12-of-14 targets for 126 yards. He doesn’t have a touchdown on the season, but at his price point, he’s useful salary cap relief with a decent floor of late.

Kickers and D/STs

Each of the kickers and D/STs in this game are worthy of starts in this contest. The last time these teams met, Khalil Mack and the Chargers sacked O’Connell seven times. That was O’Connell’s first start though and we can’t count on those number again. Stick is a backup QB and Maxx Crosby and company could put him in a blender, but he’s also a bit of an unknown.

Both Cameron Dicker and Daniel Carlson have decent matchups and are good enough to put up numbers in perfect conditions.