DraftKings Showdown-Thursday Night Football Browns vs Steelers

Mandatory Credit: Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Mandatory Credit: Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images /
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CLEVELAND, OH – NOVEMBER 10, 2019: Running back Kareem Hunt #27 of the Cleveland Browns on the field prior to a game against the Buffalo Bills on November 10, 2019 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland won 19-16. (Photo by: 2019 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images) /

DraftKings Showdown-Mid-Tier Options

Jarvis Landry WR CLE-$8,000

In a full-point per reception format like DraftKings, there isn’t a much more reliable and consistent option that Jarvis Landry. Landry has had his ups and downs this season along with his quarterback and the offense as a whole, but for the most part, he has been a solid week-to-week fantasy receiver while still possessing very high upside.

When someone is known as a PPR-type receiver, many assume that they just operate out of the slot and catch eight balls for 60 yards on little dink-and-dunk throws. That isn’t all that Landry does in this Browns offense. He is a dynamic playmaker and runs routes to all levels of the field, lining up all across the line of scrimmage.

Landry has had two real breakout games this season. One was last week against the Bills where he caught 9 of 10 targets for 97 yards and a touchdown (his second consecutive game with a TD), scoring 24.7 DraftKings points. The other? The Browns last divisional matchup against the Ravens where he caught eight passes for 167 yards, scoring 27.7 DraftKings points.

Landry put up 15 receptions for 145 yards in two games last season against the Steelers. Given his previous history and his recent success, I think Landry will be able to stay hot against the Steelers on Thursday. Pittsburgh ranks 12th against opposing fantasy receivers, but Landry can move anywhere in order to find a mismatch. As long as the offense is clicking and the passing game is in sync, I expect Landry to be at the forefront.

Kareem Hunt RB CLE-$5,800

This may be my favorite play on the entire slate, even ahead of Landry (if you know me, that’s saying something). Kareem Hunt showed so much value to the Browns in his Cleveland debut and I can only imagine that his usage will increase after his showing on Sunday.

As I touched on earlier when talking about Nick Chubb, Hunt was instrumental in Chubb’s success running the ball against Buffalo. The majority of the Browns offensive plays came with both backs on the field and it was no coincidence that the offense showed better production with Hunt out there with Chubb.

Hunt showed his incredible willingness as a run blocker. After being THE guy in the Kansas City backfield, Hunt never really had to compete for snaps, let alone block for another running back. But now he finds himself in a very different role in Cleveland. A role that he has embraced and embodied.

Now I know that blocking for Nick Chubb won’t be earning Hunt any fantasy points. But it should help him see the field a ton. You can’t score fantasy points at all if you aren’t on the field and Hunt’s willingness and ability to run block opens up more opportunities for him to be out there.

Hunt can do more than just block. He is still an efficient runner (over seven yards per carry in his first game of the season) and his a great receiver, out of the backfield or even in the slot (seven catches for 44 yards in his Browns debut a week ago).

Hunt scored 14.4 DraftKings points last week in his first game returning from suspension. After such an impressive all-around performance I would be shocked if his snap count didn’t go up from the 54% that it was at last week. More time on the field should very well lead to more fantasy points, and priced at just $5,800, Kareem Hunt appears to be a must-have in your lineups this week.

James Washington WR PIT-$5,600

Who is the number two receiver in Pittsburgh? Your guess may be as good as mine, or Mike Tomlin’s or Mason Rudolph’s. At first it was Donte Moncrief who was recently released by the team. At times it appeared that Toledo rookie Diontae Johnson would take over that role, but he has been wildly inconsistent. Right now, it’s looking like that guy is James Washington.

Washington is officially listed as the starting wide receiver opposite of JuJu Smith-Schuster on the Steelers depth chart, but his play has been doing the talking the past couple weeks. With Mason Rudolph returning as the starting quarterback after a scary concussion, the former Oklahoma State teammates seem to be finding their stride with one another at the NFL level.

In his last two games, Washington has set season-highs in receptions in back-to-back weeks. He had is two highest scoring fantasy days of the year, scoring double digits both of the last two weeks. Last week against the Rams, Washington really broke through with six catches for 90 yards and a touchdown, scoring 20.0 DraftKings points.

While Diontae Johnson could be the one with the monster game this week, as he did the last time the Steelers were in primetime against Miami in week eight, Washington is much cheaper and has more recent success that I would trust. The Browns have been up and down against opposing wide receivers, so we don’t quite know what to expect. Washington has the ability to burn the secondary deep, and if he does that he should end up with solid fantasy production this week.

Others to consider: Diontae Johnson WR PIT-$6,400, Vance McDonald TE PIT-$5,400