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Fantasy Football Picks: Cowboys vs. Cardinals DraftKings NFL DFS MNF Showdown Strategy

Julian Edlow preps you for Monday’s 8:15 p.m. ET NFL contest between the Cowboys and Cardinals with game-script analysis and DraftKings Captain’s Picks.

After opening as three-point underdogs on DraftKings Sportsbook, the market is telling us that line was an overreaction to Dak Prescott’s injury. The Cowboys have shifted to home favorites in this one, which should be a fantasy-friendly game, as the total points sits at 55 on DraftKings Sportsbook. Let’s break down Cowboys-Cardinals from a DraftKings Showdown perspective.

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: NFL $800K Monday Night Showdown [$200K to 1st] (ARI vs DAL)


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Arizona Cardinals

Even with the Cardinals showing some regression in Weeks 3 and 4, Kyler Murray ($12,400) has been as consistent an option as you could ask for this season. Not only is he averaging 28 DKFP through five games, he’s scored at least 24 DKFP each time out. Now Kyler gets a terrific matchup against a Dallas defense that’s given up at least 34 points in each of the last four games and ranks 25th in DKFP allowed to QB. Kyler is a chalky play, but he is easily the safest play on the slate — especially factoring in his rushing ability.

DeAndre Hopkins ($11,200) is obviously the top stacking option to go alongside Murray, topping 130 yards in three of his first five games with Arizona. Given the matchup, Hopkins seems like a bargain at his second-cheapest Showdown salary of the season, with Dallas allowing the second-most DKFP to WR.

Christian Kirk ($6,000) has seen his production start to slowly rise, and he had somewhat of a breakout against the Jets, finishing with five receptions for 78 yards (12.8 DKFP). While a matchup against the Jets is about as good as it gets for a breakout game, the Cowboys aren’t much different. Expect some of that momentum to continue.

Larry Fitzgerald ($4,800) doesn’t seem to have much upside this season, so if you do want a cheaper WR play on the Arizona side, I’d prefer the savings on Andy Isabella ($3,800). Isabella has a low floor, but there’s a high ceiling worth exploring in a great matchup like this.

The TE position is essentially a non-factor in this offense, but if you do wind up playing one, it’s worth noting that Darrell Daniels ($1,800) surpassed Dan Arnold ($1,200) last week on the depth chart. Arnold wasn’t targeted against the Jets, while Daniels played almost twice as many snaps, securing both of his targets for 37 yards.

The RB position is interesting, as Chase Edmonds ($7,000) has surpassed Kenyan Drake ($6,600) in salary. Eventually, Drake’s going to break out on the ground, because he’s still getting a solid workload. While he’s not a big contributor in the passing game (six receptions in five games), he is averaging 17 carries per game. Dallas does actually rank fourth in DKFP allowed to RB, but 15-20 touches seems reasonable to expect. Edmonds has been making the big plays though the air, which is enticing to roster, but also could be due for some regression. Edmonds has just 19 total carries on the season, but has caught 5-of-6 targets in consecutive weeks, scoring a touchdown in each game. Exposure to both RBs makes sense, but buying low on Drake is the safer move, given he should see twice as many touches.

Dallas Cowboys

Write off the Cowboys without Dak if you please, but arguably no team in the NFL is better prepared to lose a starting QB. The defense has its own issues, but Andy Dalton ($9,600) is as good as it gets when it comes to backup QBs, taking the Bengals to the playoffs five years in a row during his prime. He steps into an extremely explosive offense, loaded with weapons on the outside. Arizona ranks below average against QBs this season, and Dalton looked good to finish last week’s game in a limited sample — 9-of-11 for 111 yards, including some clutch plays to Michael Gallup ($5,600).

It seemed like Dalton and Gallup had a good connection to finish off the Giants last week, which has me interested in the cheapest of the three Dallas WRs. Gallup has the same big-play upside as the rest of the WR plays, so why not take the discount on someone we know Dalton trusts.

It was interesting to now see CeeDee Lamb ($8,400) as the most expensive of the Cowboys’ WRs, but 20-plus DKFP in three of his last four makes him well worth it. Not to use too much recency bias, or to go off too small a sample with Dalton, but Amari Cooper ($8,000) is probably the third WR option for me here. The combination of high salary with a low floor makes him tough to trust. Dalton didn’t show much interest in Cooper when finishing out the last game.

Dalton Schultz ($6,000) is a hit-or-miss option at TE, but being more expensive than Gallup is a joke. Gallup’s the play once again, with Schultz a GPP option to play along with Gallup, or an extremely contrarian pivot.

Then there’s Ezekiel Elliott ($10,600), who’s the safest play on the Dallas side. ‘Zeke’s 22.7 DKFP average is pretty much what you can expect, as he’s finished between 17.8 and 27.7 DKFP in every contest so far this season. He’ll be heavily leaned upon in Dalton’s first start and should see 20-plus touches against a below average Arizona run defense.


I like the Cowboys to come out on top in this one, but we should see plenty of offense on both sides. I prefer going to Michael Gallup ($8,400 CP) at Captain, which allows you to fit in three studs at the FLEX spots. Gallup himself should be just as strong a play as some of the guys priced a few thousand above him.

Final Score: Cowboys 31, Cardinals 27

Set your DraftKings fantasy football lineups here: NFL $800K Monday Night Showdown [$200K to 1st] (ARI vs DAL)

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