Cardinals vs. Rams: Daily Fantasy Sleepers, Lineup Picks for FanDuel, DraftKings

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJanuary 17, 2022

Cardinals vs. Rams: Daily Fantasy Sleepers, Lineup Picks for FanDuel, DraftKings

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    Kyusung Gong/Associated Press

    Cooper Kupp became a fantasy football legend with his triple-crown season in the Los Angeles Rams passing attack. 

    The 28-year-old finished first in receptions, receiving yards and touchdown catches while helping the Los Angeles to the NFC West title. 

    Those numbers should make Kupp the top daily fantasy football lineup choice for the Monday night clash against the Arizona Cardinals in the NFL Wild Card Round. 

    The Eastern Washington product recorded a season-best 13 receptions in his last meeting with the Cardinals. That fact only fuels the idea that he will be the top rostered player in single-game DFS contests. 

    Matthew Stafford is the easy starting point for a Rams lineup stack with Kupp, and there are a few other passing game options to consider if you go that strategic route. 

    Kyler Murray should generate interest in DFS contests, but Arizona's top option is James Conner because of his high touchdown rate. 

Rams Lineup Picks

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    Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

    WR Cooper Kupp

    The easiest decision you will make on Monday is to add Cooper Kupp to your daily fantasy football squad. 

    He totaled 145 receptions, 1,947 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns in the expanded regular season, and he finished with five 100-yard performances in six games. He had 95 yards in the game he did not hit the century mark. 

    Kupp tortured the Arizona Cardinals secondary for 13 receptions on 15 targets in the Week 14 clash between the two sides. He recorded five catches on 13 targets when they met at Sofi Stadium in Week 4.

    His totals have come a long way since the October 3 matchup, and it seems silly not to roster him in some capacity. 

    Kupp will be a popular captain option in FanDuel and DraftKings contests, but some users could go away from strategy solely because it will be so popular. 

           

    QB Matthew Stafford

    The easy DFS lineup pairing features Kupp and Matthew Stafford. 

    The former Detroit Lions signal-caller had five touchdown passes and a single interception in his two meetings with the Cardinals this season. 

    There is some concern about Stafford because he threw seven interceptions over his last three games, but he did have six touchdown throws in that span. 

    One turnover should not hurt the 33-year-old's fantasy status because of the expected high volume in the passing game. 

    Stafford attempted over 30 passes in 14 of his 17 starts, and he completed over 65 percent of those throws in 11 outings.

    A Stafford-Kupp combination will be popular, so you may have to add a sleeper play from the Rams passing game with them to move up the money positions in your DFS contests. 

Cardinals Lineup Picks

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    Ralph Freso/Associated Press

    RB James Conner

    James Conner became close to an automatic start in DFS contests during the middle of the regular season.

    The 26-year-old reeled off a five-game scoring streak in which he had a pair of multi-score games. He finished with 15 ground scores and three more through the air. 

    The Cardinals will call on Conner in red-zone situations to finish off drives, even with Aaron Donald and Co. providing pressure up the middle. 

    Conner scored twice in both of his meetings with the Rams. He only had 81 rushing yards in those contests, but he made up for that with his end-zone production. 

    The Pittsburgh product should be the top running back option from Monday's contest. Los Angeles has two choices in Cam Akers and Sony Michel. Their production could be split if the Rams feel Akers is healthy enough to handle a handful of carries. 

             

    QB Kyler Murray

    Both quarterbacks feel like decent DFS options on Monday night.

    Stafford is the obvious choice because of his connection with Kupp, but Kyler Murray should have a decent roster percentage as well. 

    The Arizona signal-caller has attempted over 35 passes in each of his last five trips to the gridiron. That run started with a 32-of-49 performance in Week 14 against the Rams. 

    Murray has been more active with his legs lately. He totaled 153 rushing yards in the last three games and ran for 61 yards in Week 14. 

    The Oklahoma product has not turned the ball over as much as Stafford, but some of his touchdowns could be taken away by Conner. He is worth the play if you choose a Cardinals lineup stack, or even as a single option to pair with a Rams stack to maximize the point potential. 

Top Sleepers

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    Rams RB Cam Akers

    Cam Akers is the riskiest player in Monday's contest. 

    The 22-year-old received limited action in Week 18 as he works his way back from an Achilles injury that he suffered in training camp.

    It is remarkable that Akers is even out on the field after he was considered to be lost for the entire season.

    Akers ran for three yards on five carries versus the San Francisco 49ers in the regular-season finale. He could see an increased volume against Arizona, but he will not have 15-20 carries because of his status and Sony Michel's presence in the ground game. 

    The best-case scenario for rostering the Florida State product is that he is used in red-zone situations and finds the end zone. That would make up for a potentially small yardage total. 

    The worst-case scenario features Akers in another limited role with no touchdown opportunities. But he's worth the risk because of his potentially low salary and a smaller roster percentage than other sleeper options.

              

    Cardinals WR Antoine Wesley

    Antoine Wesley became a popular target of Kyler Murray during the past month. 

    The 24-year-old caught two touchdown passes in the Week 17 win over the Dallas Cowboys, and he has been targeted 13 times in the last three weeks. 

    Wesley is one of the wide receivers tasked with replacing De'Andre Hopkins' production inside the Arizona offense. A.J. Green and Christian Kirk featured in elevated roles, and Rondale Moore could be a factor on Monday as well.

    Wesley is worth the risk in DFS contests because of his recent usage and touchdown potential. Like Akers, if he scores one touchdown, that could be the difference in where your lineups sit in the money positions. 

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