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DraftKings Fantasy Football Sleepers: NFL DFS Pivot Picks for Week 8

Garion Thorne goes position-by-position to find overlooked players on Week 8’s main DraftKings slate, which locks at 1:00 p.m. ET on Nov. 1.

It’s hard to know what a sleeper even is anymore when it comes to Fantasy Football, but, for the purposes of this article, we’ll use the term to mean an asset that’s likely to be undervalued heading into a given week. A player that’s going to be overlooked when it comes to ownership, yet one that has a reasonable path to make people regret that decision. Someone who might set your lineup apart from the pack in a GPP, if you will.

With that in mind, let’s go position-by-position for an early look at Week 8’s slate on DraftKings.

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Nick Foles, Chicago Bears vs. New Orleans Saints, $5,800

If I had to summarize this article in a single sentence, I’d say it’s an attempt to emphasize the enticing statistics around a player that might not seem overly appealing at first glance. Well, who’s less appealing right now than the quarterback running Chicago’s offense? Foles is coming off a disastrous performance on Monday Night Football, a contest where he threw a pair of interceptions and didn’t lead the Bears to a single offensive touchdown. Still, the veteran will have two very crucial things working in his favor in Week 8 — aside from the obvious bonus that no one will be playing him: Volume and matchup. Going back to the beginning of Week 4, no NFC quarterback has taken more drop backs than Foles’ 173, as Chicago’s thrown the ball on a league-high 69.6% of its plays across its past three games. That’s the kind of opportunity that could lead to a huge DFS output against New Orleans, especially considering no team has surrendered more opponent passing touchdowns on a weekly basis (2.8). I’d certainly say that Foles’ viability is tied to the health of Allen Robinson (concussion), who left the loss to the Rams late in the fourth quarter; however, if he’s on the field, the QB deserves some exposure.

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Darrell Henderson, Los Angeles Rams at Miami Dolphins, $5,900

It’s always a risk to invest too heavily in a Rams running back. While Malcolm Brown ($4,700) vulturing a touchdown from Henderson last week is the easiest example of how things can go sideways, there’s also just a chance that Sean McVay wakes up this week and decides he actually wants to see what Cam Akers ($4,300) can do with the ball in his hands. That said, Henderson has shown the highest ceiling of anyone in this backfield in 2020 and that puts him into a nice spot against a Dolphins defense that’s begging you to run. In fact, though Miami comes into Week 8 with the sixth-overall pass defense by DVOA, it sits dead-last versus the rush — a product of being gashed for 5.04 adjusted line yards per opponent carry. So, despite Henderson scoring fewer than 10.0 DKFP in each of his past two games, I’d rather focus on the fact he’s averaged 14.7 rushing attempts dating back to Week 5. Or, if that’s not enough juice, how about that Henderson’s exceeded 20.0 DKFP three times already this season? With the Tua Tagovailoa ($5,600) making his first NFL start this Sunday, there’s a possible script where Los Angeles completely controls this matchup with its defense and its ground attack. If that turns out to be the case, Henderson will be a steal below $6K.


Tim Patrick, Denver Broncos vs. Los Angeles Chargers, $4,700

If there’s an offensive unit that the public is somehow lower on than the Bears, it’s the Broncos. Though you’d assume that the team’s prospects would have improved with the return of sophomore QB Drew Lock ($5,300) in Week 6, the former first-round pick has looked awful in his past two starts, completing a mere 53.1% (34-for-64) of his passes and throwing four interceptions to zero touchdowns. Still, there is one person who’s somehow managed to see their fantasy stock improve within these conditions: Tim Patrick. Don’t get me wrong, the 26-year-old isn’t suddenly going to a weekly success story — as evidenced by an underwhelming DFS output this past Sunday — but he is functioning as Denver’s No. 1 wide receiver with Courtland Sutton on the IR. However, that hasn’t just meant more targets for Patrick, it’s specifically meant more high-leverage targets. To wit, across the past two weeks, Patrick ranks third among all WRs with 243 total air yards. His aDOT within this span of 20.1 yards is the highest of any wideout with double-digit targets. Again, high-leverage generally doesn’t equate to high-efficiency, so Patrick is an unstable asset; yet he possesses a ceiling few do at this price point.


Jonnu Smith, Tennessee Titans at Cincinnati Bengals, $4,100

Smith has been an absolute no-show for two-straight weeks, but all that figures to come to an end this Sunday against the Bengals. With a 27% target share to the position, no AFC team has allowed its opposition to pepper their tight ends more frequently than Cincinnati in 2020. So, while Smith has just two catches for 22 yards since the beginning of Week 6, you’d actually be wise to consider him a high-floor piece on this slate. You also need not worry about his health or his workload. After logging an underwhelming 38.7% snap share in Week 6’s win over Houston, Smith was on the field for a far more encouraging 70.2% of the Titans’ offensive plays in the team’s recent loss to the Steelers. Look for Smith to regain the form that had his salary well above $5K earlier in the season.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) 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.