Week 18 is always tricky if you’re trying to squeeze every ounce of fantasy football out of the 2023 NFL season. There are plenty of teams already in the playoffs and opting to rest players on Sunday for the main slate. Here we’ll examine some backfields that have players resting and where the value lies on DraftKings.
NFL DFS Picks, Week 18: RB value plays
Jordan Mason, SF vs. LAR, $4,600
We know Christian McCaffrey won’t play in Week 18 for the Niners, who are locked into the top seed in the NFC. Elijah Mitchell recently returned from injury and likely won’t see a ton of snaps (if any). So that leaves Jordan Mason as the back who should see significant work. Over the past two seasons, Mason has made the most of his carries. He has 77 carries for 428 yards and four TDs over that span, good for 5.6 yards per carry. We know the Rams are going to rest players as well after securing a Wild Card spot. If Mason gets double-digit touches, he should turn that into a solid fantasy outing.
Isaiah Spiller, LAC vs. KC, $4,400
We know the Chiefs are resting starters locked into the 3-seed in the AFC. The Chargers haven’t been playing for anything since Justin Herbert went down and Brandon Staley was fired as head coach. Spiller has slowly overtaken Joshua Kelley as the RB2 for the Chargers behind Austin Ekeler. We can’t imagine Ekeler will play much in Week 18 with free agency looming again this offseason. Spiller is almost done with his second full NFL season and the Chargers can get a broader look at the back in this matchup. Spiller had 16 carries in that infamous blowout loss to the Raiders a few TNF’s ago. Expect that type of usage in Week 18; anywhere from 15-20 touches.
Pierre Strong Jr., CLE vs. CIN, $4,000
Strong’s name has popped up a bit in season-long fantasy football with the injuries to the Browns’ backfield. Jerome Ford took over as the lead back. Kareem Hunt has stayed relevant as a goal-line back. Strong is the third-stringer and should see most of the touches out of the backfield with Cleveland resting starters. Over the past two weeks, Strong has nine carries for 51 yards, though he did lose a fumble last week vs. the Jets on TNF. Still, the Browns should give Strong plenty of touches and he’d be in line for goal-line work as well.