This article is part of our FanDuel College Football series.
We roll into Week 2 with another hefty slate featuring a chunk of expected high-scoring tilts. Oklahoma-SMU and Texas Tech-Oregon lead the way with a 68.5-point total, while Tulane-Ole Miss (66.5) and Boise State-UCF (60.5) round out our 60-plus totals. Only Oklahoma surpasses the 40-plus point expected mark at 42.5, but North Carolina (39.0), Oregon (37.5) and Ole Miss (36.5) each cross the 35-point barrier. The Tar Heels (-19.5) and Sooners (-16.5) are also the only teams on the slate who are more than seven-point favorites, so there should be plenty of nail-biters on the slate, keeping starting offenses on the field all game.
College Football DFS Weather (Wind speed over 10 MPH noted)
- Notre Dame at North Carolina State: Decent chance for rain in at least the second half.
- Purdue at Virginia Tech: Decent chance for second-half rain.
- Utah at Baylor: Wind could sit around 10 MPH for much of the game.
- Texas A&M at Miami: Less than 50 percent chance for rain throughout, could still be some.
- Appalachian State at North Carolina: Chance for rain throughout and possible thunderstorms.
- SMU at Oklahoma: Wind could be around 10 MPH at kickoff but expected to die down early.
- Cincinnati at Pittsburgh: Chance for Thunderstorms in the evening.
Notable Injuries/Absences for Week 2 in College Football
Cameron Rising, Utah - Unlikely to start Saturday, unclear if he will play at all.
Ja'Quinden Jackson, Utah - Was nicked up for last week's game and is believed to be day-to-day. Seems likely he'll play, but it's unclear how much if so.
Noah Whittington, Oregon - Didn't play in opener but has been practicing this week.
CJ Baxter, Texas - Has looked good in practice this week, seemingly suggesting he'll be available after leaving the opener.
Alton McCaskill, Colorado - Getting closer to return, still uncertain for Saturday.
Drake Stoops, Oklahoma - Wanted to go back in last week and is on the depth chart for Week 2.
Kris Hutson, Oregon - Reportedly practiced during the week after missing the opener.
Leyton Smithson, Washington State - Listed on depth chart for Week 2.
Brant Kuithe, Utah - No update this week on whether or not he will suit up.
Garrett Miller, Purdue - Not on the depth chart for Week 2 and doesn't seem to have a clear timetable for return.
Caleb Fauria, Colorado - No real word on him recently but missed the opener.
Elijah Arroyo, Miami - Good chance to make season debut Saturday.
Casey Kelly, Oregon, - Practiced in pads Tuesday.
College Football DFS Tools
- FanDuel Lineup Optimizer
- Matchups Page (Vegas odds, opponent averages, etc.)
- Advanced Lineups Page
- Team Trends
- Defense vs. Position
- Team Rankings
Week 2 CFB DFS Plays on FanDuel
Bo Nix, Oregon ($12,400) at Texas Tech
Nix didn't even require any ground effort in the opening blowout win over Portland State, but it's certainly in his bag of tricks. The senior ran for 510 yards and 14 touchdowns last season, and I expect plenty of Nix in the offense this week against a Texas Tech defense that couldn't stop Wyoming last week en route to an upset loss, allowing 68 rushing yards and a score to quarterback Andrew Peasley. Oregon can find that weakness and take advantage of it again this week, and the Red Raiders score enough that it should keep the regulars on the field.
Cameron Ward, Washington State ($9,000) vs. Wisconsin
The numbers don't exactly back this pick, except for Pro Football Focus, where the Wisconsin defense graded out 79th following Week 1 and 81st in pass coverage. As a Badger fan, I certainly hope I'm wrong here, but there were some significant hiccups in the opener as the defense transitions from zone last season to man in 2023, and Ward has the ability and weapons to take advantage of it. Plus, the Cougs get this one on home turf and face off against an uptempo Wisconsin team rather than the Badger offense that slowed down contests with huddles and a massively run-heavy approach last season.
GPP Play: Jeff Sims, Nebraska ($8,000) at Colorado
Sims is not a great thrower of the football, and he never has been. He proved that in the opener by tossing three picks, including a late one that ultimately contributed to the game-winning field goal for Minnesota as the clock expired. What Sims can do well, however, is run the ball. He rushed for 91 yards against the Gophers last week, and he faces a Colorado front that allowed 7.1 yards per carry last week. While Chandler Morris only rushed for 30, he's not exactly the same level of runner as Sims, and the fast-paced Colorado offense should grant the Huskers plenty of opportunities to possess the ball as well.
Quinshon Judkins, Ole Miss ($10,500) at Tulane
Judkins is one of the premier backs in the country and made quick work of Mercer in the opener, taking 13 carries for 60 yards and a pair of scores. Tulane can keep pace offensively here, and Judkins should remain the centerpiece of the Rebels' offense Saturday. while the overall production on the ground wasn't great for South Alabama last week, lead running back La'Damina Webb still averaged 4.4 yards per carry, so there's reason to anticipate some sizable gains for Judkins here, and there should be plenty of points going on the board.
Audric Estime, Notre Dame ($9,000) at NC State
I accidentally overlooked Estime on my first perusal of the list of names here, but the situation is too perfect for me not to include him as a fifth. Not only is the game script (Notre Dame -7.5) on his side, but the weather conditions noted above call for some rain. He's the clear lead back in Notre Dame's vaunted rushing attack. He's also facing an N.C. State defense that lost over half of its production from last year; that was on full display in the opener when they let Victor Rosa scamper for 99 yards and a pair of scores on just nine carries. This could be a second-half scenario where the Irish are grinding the second-half clock behind the 227-pound back as the rain falls.
British Brooks, North Carolina ($7,700) vs. Appalachian State
Brooks just makes too much sense here. Not only are the Tar Heel heavy favorites in this contest, but they are facing the prospects of rain and potential thunderstorms, so sloppy conditions could be in play. He went for 105 yards on his 15 carries last week, proving to be far more efficient than Omarion Hampton, and he was also the one involved in the passing game. If the conditions are sloppy, that could lead to some shorter throws to the backs and more ground game in general. The Mountaineers also yielded 4.4 yards per carry last week, and the Tar Heels are now confirmed to be without Devontez Walker for the 2023 season, so the receiving corps isn't quite as star-studded for Drake Maye as it could have been.
Gabe Ervin, Nebraska ($6,400) vs. Colorado
Ervin reportedly separated himself in camp and took over the lead role, and he showed why on limited touches in the opener, rushing for 55 yards on only seven carries in a slugfest versus Minnesota. This week, he faces a Colorado defensive front that struggled mightily to contain the run against TCU in the opener, so I don't see a reason why Ervin shouldn't receive more touches, especially given that Anthony Grant -- who led the way with nine totes last week -- averaged a meager 3.0 yards per carry and lost a fumble.
This is a good GPP spot to target one way or the other. It's a late game, so the best move may be to leave enough salary room to incorporate Jackson as your play while leaving the easy switch to Bernard available. While the stats didn't exactly show it, Baylor traded out among the worst (112th) in run defense last week. Pair that with limited-to-no Rising and possibly no Kuithe again for this one, and the recipe to take care of business may involve a heavy dose of the rushing attack. Jackson should be the first man through if he's healthy, but he only took five carries last week. There is certainly risk involved here and limited pivot options late, but the upside is there.
Wide Receiver/Tight End
Jerand Bradley, Texas Tech ($8,800) vs. Oregon
Bradley is the clear go-to guy for Tyler Shough in the Red Raiders' passing attack, drawing 13 targets in the opener, five more than any other wideout. The Red Raiders are going to have to do the same again in Saturday's contest to keep up with the high-powered Ducks, so look for Bradley to get passes his way early and often. He's also a prime red-zone threat, standing 6-foo-t-5 and 220 pounds, so he's the best bet among the wideouts to reach pay dir once after scoring six times in 11 games last season.
Will Pauling, Wisconsin ($6,500) at Washington State
While the obvious options in Wisconsin's offense are the running backs, it's worth noting that Washington State had a great run defense last year and graded out well on that front in the opener against Colorado State as well. In what was a somewhat lackluster showing from Wisconsin's passing attack in the opener, Pauling is one piece who stood out, reeling in all five of his targets for 55 yards. Phil Longo loves to get the ball in the hands of playmakers in the slot, as he did at North Carolina with Josh Downs last season, and Pauling's 1.8 aDOT from the opener suggests he's the man for that task in Wisconsin's offense this year.
Kobe Hudson, UCF ($6,800) at Boise State
Hudson may not have posted eye-popping numbers in the opener, but he led the team in passing snaps in the blowout win despite being labeled just a co-starter on the depth chart. This week, the team faces off against a Boise State defense that just surrendered 450 passing yards and five touchdowns to Washington a week ago. While that is one of the premier passing attacks in the country, the Knights are no slouches on that front and are well-equipped to do plenty of damage through the air and should be able to do just that, and Hudson, who accounted for seven touchdowns last season, seems a solid candidate to get on the board there despite a lack of targets in Week 1.
GPP Play: DT Sheffield, Washington State ($5,100) vs. Wisconsin
Again, as a Badger fan who watched the game last week, it was the slot receiver for Buffalo, Cole Harrity, who gave the Wisconsin secondary the most fits. While Lincoln Victor ($8,600) played far more snaps and is likely the natural fit for the spot, it was Sheffield who garnered a lot of hype in the offseason. Sheffield is a speedster and averaged 9.6 yards on his depth of target in the opener; it just seems like a spot where he could cause some troubles in the secondary against a defense that, as I mentioned in the Ward section above, had some hiccups in Week 1 with the switch from zone to man defense on the back end.