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Madden Stream Picks: Top DraftKings Fantasy Football DFS Targets, Values for May 24

Zach Thompson gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Monday’s three-game Madden Stream DraftKings slate, which starts at 6:00 p.m. ET.

A new Madden season kicks off this Monday on the DraftKings Dream Stream with six Madden 21 sims throughout the afternoon and evening. The season starts at noon with the kickoff game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Dallas Cowboys, and the featured three-game classic slate gets underway at 6:00 p.m. ET as the Week 1 schedule continues with a battle of the birds between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Atlanta Falcons. At 8:00 p.m. ET, the Los Angeles Chargers visit the Washington Football Team, and the night wraps up with a nice matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Buffalo Bills.

The new season will follow the 2021 NFL schedule and continue to use the existing Madden 21 rosters and ratings from Week 1 of the 2020 season. You can find the gameplay details for all the sims and the upcoming schedule on the Madden Streams Information Page and dive into the full depth chart for each team.



Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons vs. Houston Texans, $7,200 — Ryan kept rolling with 28.7 DKFP against the Texans on Sunday night. With 373 passing yards and three more touchdown passes in that matchup, Matty Ice now has at least three touchdowns in five of his past six games with over 20 DKFP in each of those contests and over 28 DKFP in four of those six. In his 82 sims, he is averaging 19.5 DKFP on 266.1 passing yards per game with a total of 168 touchdowns. In two of his three previous matchups with the Eagles, he posted over 300 yards and over 18 DKFP, and he has that kind of ceiling again in this contest.

Other Option — Carson Wentz ($7,300)


Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills, $6,300 — Big Ben hasn’t shown as much consistency as Ryan, but he has had some big games and saves almost $1K. He works well passing to TEs and RBs, which has been a successful blueprint against the Bills, who focus on taking away the outside options with X-factor Superstar CB Tre’Davious White. Roethlisberger had 13.2, 26.76 and 15.6 DKFP in his three previous Madden 21 matchups with Buffalo and comes into this rematch with at least 14 DKFP in nine of his past 11.

Other Option — Josh Allen ($6,900)

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Running Back


J.D. McKissic, Washington Football Team vs. Los Angeles Chargers, $6,500 — McKissic is a little cheaper than the other feature backs on this slate, but I think he’s actually the safest play due to his work as a receiver. Like in real life, McKissic is a PPR beast in Madden 21, posting three catches or more in eight straight and 16 of his past 17 sims. He averaged six catches and 16.8 DKFP in his three earlier matchups with the Chargers and is almost bust-proof due to his steady diet of targets.

Other Option — Austin Ekeler ($7,400), Todd Gurley II ($7,200)


Jaylen Samuels, Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills, $4,400 — Since the Steelers are the only team on this slate that utilizes a timeshare, Samuels is the best cheap play. As the third-down back, he has averaged 4.0 catches per sim and has reached double-digit DKFP in two of his three earlier meetings with Buffalo. Samuels brings a high ceiling, especially if the Steelers spend most of their time in shotgun formations against the Bills.

Other Option — James Conner ($3,600)

Wide Receiver


Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons vs. Philadelphia Eagles, $7,500 — Jones has been the second-best WR in all of Madden behind only Tyreek Hill. Without Hill on this slate, it makes sense to pay up for Julio, who averages 5.1 catches for 82.6 yards per game. He comes into this matchup with a streak of eight straight games over 10 DKFP and has reached that level in 23 of his past 24 contests. Jones also hit double-digits in all three of his earlier matchups with the Eagles, highlighted by a 147-yard, 30.7-DKFP performance.

Other Options — JuJu Smith-Schuster ($6,600), DeSean Jackson ($6,000)


Marquise Goodwin, Philadelphia Eagles at Atlanta Falcons, $5,500 — Goodwin always brings a high ceiling with his 97 speed rating and solid workload out of the slot for the Eagles. He had over 20 DKFP two sims ago against the Broncos and posted 18.7, 11 and 12.7 DKFP in his three matchups earlier in Madden 21 against the beatable Falcons secondary.

Dontrelle Inman, Washington Football Team vs. Los Angeles Chargers, $3,400 — The Washington passing game is boom-or-bust since Dwayne Haskins Jr. ($6,000) struggles at times. Inman has had some good games, though, as the WR3 and has double-digit DKFP in three of his past four games. This game will most likely be low-scoring with two good defenses, but Inman is incredibly cheap for a player averaging over three catches and 35 yards per sim and unlocks plenty of salary to spend in other spots.

Other Options — Steven Sims Jr. ($4,800), Russell Gage ($4,000)

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Tight End


Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles at Atlanta Falcons, $6,100 — Where Ertz will play in real-life Week 1 is still a mystery, but he’ll keep doing work for the Eagles in Monday’s sim. Ertz has been one of the best TEs in Madden 21, averaging 14.3 DKFP on 5.5 catches for 59.5 yards per sim and scoring a total of 33 touchdowns. He had 10 catches, 104 yards and 29.4 DKFP in his most recent game against Atlanta after 25 and 9.9 DKFP in their earlier meetings.

Other Option — Eric Ebron ($5,500)


Hunter Henry, Los Angeles Chargers at Washington Football Team, $4,000 — The Chargers rely heavily on Henry as a possession receiver and the TE1 has at least four catches in six of his past seven sims. While none of those games has resulted in an off-the-charts total, he’s a reliable play at $4K and did have seven catches for 11.6 DKFP in his most recent matchup with Washington.

Other Option — Lee Smith ($3,200)



Steelers DST at Buffalo Bills, $3,100 — The Steelers remain one of the top DSTs in Madden 21, and they get a good matchup against Josh Allen ($6,900), who can get turnover prone at times when he’s on the move. Pittsburgh has forced 67 turnovers in 79 sims to go with 165 sacks. The DST has multiple sacks in nine straight and has averaged 5.7 DKFP in their three prior sims against Buffalo.


Chargers DST at Washington Football Team, $2,900 — With Haskins’ struggles, the Washington offense hasn’t put up many points, and the Chargers have shown they can create mayhem with 75 takeaways and 177 sacks in their 82 sims. The Bolts averaged 8.3 DKFP in their three earlier sims against Washington, allowing under 14 points in each of those contests.

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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.