NFL Playoffs 2019: Vegas Odds, Top Fantasy Picks for Saturday Divisional Games

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistJanuary 12, 2019

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 7: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs flexes his muscle with teammates Tyreek Hill #10 and Cameron Erving #75 after scoring a rushing touchdown during the first quarter of the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Arrowhead Stadium on October 7, 2018 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
Peter Aiken/Getty Images

It's the second week of the 2019 NFL playoffs, and the daily fantasy world continues rolling along.

Whether you want a weekend-long contest or one that splits the two-game slate in half, you should find a tournament out there to your liking.

We'll help you prepare by looking at Saturday's top fantasy pick at each offensive skill position after laying out the schedule and latest odds.


Saturday Divisional Schedule and Odds

Indianapolis Colts at Kansas City Chiefs (-5.5) at 4:35 p.m. on NBC

Dallas Cowboys at Los Angeles Rams (-7) at 8:15 p.m. on Fox

Odds per OddsSharkAll times ET.


Top Fantasy Picks

QB: Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs

Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

While Mahomes' defense is the most favorable on the slate for quarterbacks (fifth-most fantasy points allowed on Yahoo Sports), it's hard to nominate anyone over this season's highest fantasy scorer.

The average outing for Mahomes this season has included 23.9 completions for 318.6 yards and 3.1 scores. Not to mention, there's potential for him to help fantasy owners with his legs, too. With Kareem Hunt off the roster and Spencer Ware questionable, the Chiefs may need Mahomes to chip in as a rusher. He doesn't run a ton (60 carries in 16 games), but he's capable when called upon (4.5 yards per carry).

The Colts have been on the stingy side, allowing the 12th-fewest points to opposing passers. But the big-game potential still exists. Six different quarterbacks totaled at least 240 yards and two touchdowns against Indy this season, including non-elites like Andy Dalton (243 yards, two scores), Sam Darnold (280, two) and Blake Bortles (320, two).

Mahomes isn't going to cost you if you want him, but if you want the best passer in the business, it's him by a comfortable margin.


RB: Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys

Ron Jenkins/Associated Press

With NFL teams moving away from the workhorse-running back model, it can be difficult to find guaranteed volume. But Elliott might be the best supplier of it. And if he's not, then it might be Todd Gurley, who hasn't played since Dec. 16, faces the NFL's fifth-best rushing defense and could split some carries with C.J. Anderson, who rushed 43 times for 299 yards in the two games Gurley missed.

Elliott's path to major points, then, has far fewer obstacles.

He's coming in hot, after putting up 169 scrimmage yards and a score in the wild card round. The Rams defense is vulnerable to rushers, allowing a league-worst 5.1 yards per carry in the regular season. Plus, there basically isn't a second back in Dallas. Rod Smith has the title on the depth chart, but he managed just 44 carries in 16 games—260 fewer than Elliott received in 15 contests.

The Cowboys will want to avoid a shootout with the Rams, who averaged the second-most points this season with 32.9. Establishing the ground game with Elliott early and often will be the best way to try and make that happen.


WR: Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs

KANSAS CITY, MO - DECEMBER 30: Wide receiver Tyreek Hill #10 of the Kansas City Chiefs rushes for a touchdown during the second half against the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium on December 30, 2018 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter G. Aiken/G
Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images

Hill has a pinch more feast-or-famine potential than you'd like as a No. 1 receiver, as he failed to crack the 60-yard mark four different times this season. But Kansas City's burner is a threat to score every time he touches the football.

Of his 87 receptions this season, 12 went for touchdowns. Only Antonio Brown, Eric Ebron and Davante Adams scored more. Hill also averaged 17.0 yards per reception, which not only ranked fifth among qualified receivers, it trailed just Mike Evans among players with 50-plus receptions.

As Ian Hartitz of the Action Network observed, Hill's explosive speed could prove problematic for Indy's secondary.

When Hill feasts on a defense, his fantasy owners get all the production they could ever imagine. He reached the century mark six times this season, tallying 44 receptions and 10 touchdowns in those contests.


TE: Eric Ebron, Indianapolis Colts

HOUSTON, TX - JANUARY 05:  Eric Ebron #85 of the Indianapolis Colts reaches for the end zone for a touchdown defended by Tyrann Mathieu #32 of the Houston Texans in the first quarter during the Wild Card Round at NRG Stadium on January 5, 2019 in Houston,
Tim Warner/Getty Images

Some might argue Travis Kelce deserves this spot, and they could present a compelling case. He might have the position's best combination of size and athleticism, and those physical tools propelled him to 103 receptions for 1,336 yards and 10 touchdowns this season.

But Ebron has been a touchdown machine all year, and he's now facing a defense that surrenders more fantasy points to tight ends than anyone.

Ebron had at least one reception in 15 games this season. He found the end zone in 10 of them, including three multiple score games. All told, he hauled in 13 touchdown passes, which tied for the second-most. He then added another three receptions and another score in the wild card round.

Now, can we guarantee that Ebron will outscore Kelce? Of course not. But given the number of points this game is likely to produce and Ebron's propensity for putting them on the board, he narrowly gets our recommendation as Saturday's top fantasy tight end.


Statistics used courtesy of NFL.com and ESPN.com. Fantasy scoring obtained via Yahoo Sports.


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