Before we wrap up Week 1 in the NFL with a pair of great Monday Night Football matchups, you can get a preview of the action with Monday’s Madden simulations on The Dream Stream. DraftKings is offering three games on this Monday, each with its own showdown contest in addition to the three-game classic slate, which we’ll highlight in this post. The classic slate kicks off at 12 p.m. ET when the Bengals head to Washington for a battle of young QBs trying to establish themselves as franchise players. At 2 p.m. ET, the Steelers take on the Giants in the first of the two Monday Night Football previews. The late game on the streaming slate matches the final game of Week 1 which will feature the Broncos hosting the Tennessee Titans. Make sure to take a look at the newly updated depth charts and X-factors for Madden 21 along with the upcoming schedule on the Madden Stream info page.
Check out the daily DraftKings Madden Stream contests lobby with paid contests for real cash prizes now available alongside free contests. Each simulation will be played out computer vs. computer via an online Madden Stream using Madden 21. In this format, you can enjoy watching the game stream on the DraftKings YouTube channel, the DK Live app (download here) or right here in this post.
Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals at Washington Football Team, $6,100 — The QB options on this slate are limited but they give us a chance to use some players that aren’t normally high on the list. In Madden 21, Burrow received a pretty generous 78 overall rating, which is high for a rookie QB, and he has averaged over 130 passing yards per game along with four touchdowns in his three sims. He has over 15 DKFP in each of his past two contests and should be in a favorable matchup to put together another decent game against Washington. Washington’s secondary is beatable on deep balls and Burrow has a solid 85 deep throw accuracy rating and some speedy WRs who can make plays when he gives them opportunities.
Other Options — Daniel Jones ($6,600), Ryan Tannehill ($6,200)
Dwayne Haskins Jr., Washington Football Team vs. Cincinnati Bengals, $5,800 — Haskins rallied his team for a win in Week 1 in real life and will try to pick up a win in simland on Monday. Washington actually did surprisingly well in the Madden 21 Tournament, going 2-1 in division play and advancing to the knockout round. Haskins had over 15 DKFP in three of his four sims and put on a nice show against New York, piling up 313 yards and two touchdowns in his only home contest. Haskins has the highest ceiling of the QBs on the slate and a solid group of WRs to work with against an iffy Bengals secondary. If his offensive line holds up, he could end up being a great value under $6K.
Other Options — Ben Roethlisberger ($5,700), Drew Lock ($5,400)
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Saquon Barkley, New York Giants vs. Pittsburgh Steelers, $8,700 — Barkley has been a beast in his four Madden 21 sims. He has over 30 DKFP in two of those contests and had an amazing 11 catches for 103 yards in his most recent contest, showing the 100-yard bonus is in reach for him both as a rusher and as a receiver. He only has three touchdowns in four sims but has still averaged 24.1 DKFP, showing he is also capable of putting up big games even if he’s not getting into the end zone. Despite being in a tough matchup against the Steelers’ front seven, Barkley has too high a ceiling to pass up with so much value elsewhere on the slate, which should leave you cap room to fit his lofty salary.
Other Options — Derrick Henry ($6,800), Phillip Lindsay ($6,500)
J.D. McKissic, Washington Football Team vs. Cincinnati Bengals, $3,900 — Most of the time when a team uses a timeshare in their backfield, it makes sense to target the back that is going to get the most work in the passing game to soak up PPR points. McKissic has served as Washington’s third-down back in these sims and has produced over 9.0 DKFP in three of his four contests, including one game with seven catches out of the backfield. Chris Thompson was very productive in the Madden 2020 as Haskins’ go-to option out of the backfield and that role and route tree in Washington’s playbook has now been passed on to McKissic, who is a relatively safe option with good upside for under $4K.
Other Options — Gio Bernard ($4,900), Jaylen Samuels ($4,400)
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Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos vs. Tennessee Titans, $7,500 — Sutton’s availability for the Monday Night Football contest is still in doubt but he’ll be available for this afternoon’s Madden sim against the Titans. Sutton is the only WR on this slate with more than one game over 100 yards so far in Madden 21. He had 129 yards, a touchdown and 27.9 DKFP against the Raiders in his first sim after the move to the new game and also posted 101 yards and 19.1 DKFP against the Chiefs. He only has one touchdown in his four games but is averaging 4.5 receptions and 82.3 yards per contest. Even with the new young talent in Denver, Sutton is still the top option and should be able to post a good total against the Titans.
Other Options — JuJu Smith-Schuster ($8,000), Tyler Boyd ($6,000)
Darius Slayton, New York Giants vs. Pittsburgh Steelers, $4,100 — Slayton is the No. 2 WR for the Giants on their depth chart but he often acts as the No. 1 WR since Golden Tate ($5,000) slides to the slot. Slayton has made the most of that opportunity, hauling in 13 passes for 251 yards, a touchdown and an average of 11.0 DKFP per contest through his first four sims in Madden 21. He has over 9.0 DKFP in three straight contests and brings big-play potential with his 93 speed rating.
Diontae Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers at New York Giants, $3,600 — Johnson is the Steelers’ WR3 but has the speed to break big plays and typically gets decent opportunities to flash that 91 speed rating in Pittsburgh’s sims. He has multiple catches in four of his five sims and has totaled 200 yards on his 11 catches. With his breakaway speed, it’s a little surprising that he doesn’t have a touchdown yet but he could get his first score on the board against a Giants secondary that has given up some big plays.
Other Options — Corey Davis ($4,800), John Ross III ($3,800)
Eric Ebron, Pittsburgh Steelers at New York Giants, $4,900 — While the QBs are a little thin and the RBs are top-heavy, this slate does give us some very solid TE options, so you may want to consider using your flex spot to go with a two-TE lineup. Ebron has been a very reliable high-volume target for Big Ben in his first five sims with the Steelers, averaging over four catches per contest and totaling 209 yards and a touchdown while also posting over 14 DKFP twice already with his new team. Ebron should remain a focus of the passing attack and his possession skills over the middle should keep him as one of Pittsburgh’s most frequent targets.
Other Options— Evan Engram ($5,300), Jeremy Sprinkle ($4,700)
Noah Fant, Denver Broncos vs. Tennessee Titans, $4,500 — In the move to Madden 21, Fant remains one of the fastest tight ends in Madden with his 89 speed rating and he should continue to develop into one of the better value TEs in the game if Drew Lock continues to rely on him. Fant started his Madden 21 sims a little slow but has posted 14.8 DKFP against the Chiefs and 13.2 DKFP against the Raiders in his two most recent contests. In those two games, he has totaled 11 catches for 110 yards and a touchdown. He’ll be going for his third straight game with double-digit DKFP when he takes on the Titans.
Other Options— C.J. Uzomah ($4,100), Jonnu Smith ($3,700)
Broncos DST vs. Tennessee Titans, $3,200 — The Broncos’ defense will still have both Von Miller and Bradley Chubb in simland even though both will miss Monday Night’s game against Tennessee. The Broncos will have to try to slow down Derrick Henry, which is a tall task, but the Titans have struggled offensively overall, averaging just 15 points in the team’s four Madden 21 contests. Denver has five sacks, two takeaways, a defensive touchdown and an average of 5.8 DKFP per game over their first four contests in this version of Madden.
Steelers DST at New York Giants, $2,500 — If you need the extra salary to spend in other spots, the Steelers DST is also one of the best options on the board and the cheapest DST available. The Steelers have stacked up 13 sacks in their five games in Madden 21 and have also recovered three fumbles. Pittsburgh’s defense is loaded with playmakers, led by X-factor superstar T.J. Watt and superstars Mikah Fitzpatrick and Cameron Heyward. The Steelers were steamrolled in their matchup with the Ravens but have posted an average of 7.25 DKFP in their other four contests including 10 DKFP against the Rams in their most recent sim.
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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.