This article is part of our FanDuel College Football series.
CFB FanDuel DFS Breakdown for Saturday Main Slate
With the regular season now in the rearview, it's time to look ahead to championship weekend, with some massive games on tap sporting CFP implications. None of the eight games cross the 60-point threshold this week, but UNLV-Boise State nears the mark at a 58.5 expected total. The Big 12 Championship isn't far behind at 54.5, and Georgia-Alabama in the SEC title game sports the same expected score. Troy-App State rounds out the 50-plus projected totals.
Texas leads the way in terms of expected score (34.5), with Boise State (30.5) and Georgia (30.0) finishing out the group of teams expected to cross the 30-point barrier. Troy (29), Michigan (28.5) and UNLV (28.0) round out the teams expected to top four touchdowns.
Despite the lowest game total on the slate, Michigan (-22.0) is the heaviest favorite Saturday against a rough Iowa offense. Texas (-14.5) is the only other team favored by even eight points Saturday, with Toledo (-7.5) next in line.
For a full view of the odds and opponent stats, check the Matchups page link below.
College Football DFS Weather (winds 10+ MPH and precip. chance 50-plus percent noted)
SMU at Tulane - Thunderstorms expected throughout the day, potentially breaking some around kick, but thunderstorms all day Friday and Saturday leading up to the kickoff and sizable rain potential (north of 50 percent) throughout.
Appalachian State at Troy - Similar situation as SMU and Tulane above. Rain and storms Friday and Saturday leading up to kick and potential for thunderstorms early in the game window with rain expected throughout. Lighter rain is expected during the game, but heavy before could mean sloppy conditions.
Louisville versus Florida State - Light rain and showers are expected throughout, but nothing major for this one.
Notable College Football Injuries/Absences for Championship Week
Tate Rodemaker, Florida State - Termed a game-day decision.
CJ Baxter, Texas - Wasn't mentioned among the injuries, so it seems likely he'll be able to give it a go in the Big 12 Championship Game.
LJ Johnson, SMU - Expected to return to action in the AAC Championship Game.
Nate Noel, Appalachian State - Status unclear for Saturday after he was held out last week.
Jaylan Knighton, SMU - Should be available against Tulane.
Jase McClellan, Alabama - Considered questionable for the SEC Championship Game.
Gage Larvadain, Miami (OH) - Considered a game-time call Saturday.
Ladd McConkey, Georgia - Hasn't done a ton in practice, status remains unclear
Jha'Quan Jackson, Tulane - Optimistic about being available for the AAC Championship Game.
Lawrence Keys, Tulane - Out for the AAC Championship Game.
Kaleb Brown, Iowa - Should be good to go for Big Ten Championship.
Diante Vines, Iowa - Has been able to practice recently and hopes to play.
Chase Penry, Boise State - Not included on the depth chart this week.
Destyn Hill, Florida State - Participated in practice Tuesday.
Rara Thomas, Georgia - Didn't suit up last week and status is uncertain for Saturday.
Brock Bowers, Georgia - Termed questionable for the title game and hasn't been able to do much in practices.
College Football DFS Tools
- FanDuel Lineup Optimizer
- Matchups Page (Vegas odds, opponent averages, etc.)
- Advanced Lineups Page
- Team Trends
- Defense vs. Position
- Team Rankings
Championship Week CFB DFS Plays on FanDuel
Quinn Ewers, Texas ($10,200) vs. Oklahoma State
If we're getting a piece of the action for the highest expected total on the slate, why not start with the quarterback of that team? Given that the last three quarterbacks have all performed above their season averages, including two by 24 percent or more, things are trending well for opposing QBs of late. It's been that way most of the season too, with opposing QBs racking up 21.7 FD points per game. Ewers hasn't posted particularly big numbers of late, but with Jonathon Brooks done for the year and Baxter a bit banged up, the Longhorns don't have a ton of depth in the backfield. It wouldn't shock me to see Texas utilize more of the passing game and attempt to run up the score as they vie for a playoff spot.
Taylen Green, Boise State ($9,000) vs. UNLV
While Ashton Jeanty gets the accolades and a lot of work, this weekend could be a spot for Green to shine against a UNLV foe that has struggled to contain opposing QBs. Working more in his favor is the Runnin' Rebels, who have yielded a slate-high six rushing touchdowns to go along with 316 rushing yards to opposing quarterbacks this season. Green is a quarterback who can take advantage of that, rushing for 586 yards and 10 touchdowns last year as a regular starter and for 344 yards and seven scores this season despite dropping down the depth chart for a sizable portion. If Green can find his way to pay dirt a couple of times, he could easily warrant the salary tag.
Joey Aguilar, Appalachian State ($11,000) at Troy
Aguilar's matchup doesn't seem all that enticing, but the Trojans' opposing quarterbacks have all been less than 10 percent below or above average in each of the past three games. Even if the opponent isn't particularly appealing in terms of allowing sizable upside, that's par for the course among the quarterbacks on Saturday's slates in battles of the conference titans. Aguilar is the highest-priced QB on the slate and has averaged 26.2 FanDuel points per game over the last six. Even a 5-10 percent mark below that average would yield a return of more than 2x, which is what we're searching for this week.
Dequan Finn, Toledo ($10,300) vs. Miami (Ohio)
Finn enters championship week averaging 22 FD points per game, and he's a quarterback that can top 30 points when things fall right (he has done it twice this year). While I'm not expecting that outcome Saturday, it's unlikely that type of production will be needed on a slate featuring the best teams in each conference. Three of the last four quarterbacks to face the Redhawks have gone at least slightly above average in terms of fantasy production, and Ball State's quarterback room outproduced the average by 10 percent last week. Anything at or slightly above average for Finn is a win.
Tate Rodemaker, Florida State ($6,800) vs. Louisville
Shortly after writing this segment, news broke that Rodemaker is a game-day decision, so keep an eye on his status.
Rodemaker is worth a look for a couple of reasons. While things weren't impressive last week for the junior signal-caller, he did post 16.9 points the week prior, albeit versus North Alabama. He checks in as the second-lowest salary starting QB, ahead of just Aveon Smith ($6,500), who could also be a Hail Mary play in the superflex. Rodemaker also faces a Cards pass defense that has allowed two of the last three quarterbacks to go at least 12 percent over average. We don't really have an established "average" for Rodemaker after just two games, but the unknown means there's some upside. He also has weapons at wide receiver in Keon Coleman and Johnny Wilson. It could just as easily be the Benson show again this week, as mentioned below, but the Noles also need to prove that Rodemaker can deliver something to keep themselves in CFP consideration, so maybe they'll give Rodemaker a chance.
Makhi Hughes, Tulane ($8,900) vs. SMU
Hughes enters the week averaging only 15.8 FD points for the season, but he has topped 20 in two of the last three games. The conditions seem to be trending toward sloppy for this one due to an overwhelming amount of rain, including during the game, so it wouldn't be a surprise if the Green Wave keep the ball on the ground again this week. Hughes has 20-plus carries in all but one game since Week 5, and he had 19 totes in the only game he didn't hit the threshold. The Mustangs' defense has also allowed two of its last four running backs go over average FD points. There is certainly some risk here, as two of the last four have been under by a sizable margin as well, but the conditions would seem to warrant a heavy volume for Hughes in this one and some troubles wrapping up if the field is wet.
Trey Benson, Florida State ($8,700) vs. Louisville
There's a reason the ACC Championship Game is among the lowest expected scores on the week, and it's because the Noles no longer have Jordan Travis under center. Tate Rodemaker is far from that caliber of quarterback, as mentioned above, and it was the Benson show last week. I anticipate a similar show against Louisville here, with Florida State relying on its rushing attack and defense to claim the conference title. The hope for Florida State is that Benson and co. can run up enough of a score to impress the CFP committee, and the last two opponents have been able to find running room against the Cards, posting marks six percent and 15 percent above average. Benson took the rock 19 times last week against Florida, and I see him getting a large chunk of the workload.
I tossed Milton in one of my lineups last week to fill the roster spot, and it would have finished near the top had Bowers ended up playing. This week, the salaries between the two Georgia backs have crunched closer together. Recent production would say that Milton is the far better play, turning in more than 26 FD points in two of the last three games, and that is probably the best route to go if you're playing in a cash game format, as he's taken more totes in each of the last two games. That said, Edwards may be worth a look in GPPs, as the factors working in Milton's favor also mean he'll likely be the more heavily rostered of the two. The Crimson Tide defense has allowed its last three opponents to essentially match their season averages for fantasy production, and Edwards still has the heftier production overall, so there is more upside in the GPP overview.
Rashad Amos, Miami (Ohio) ($7,400) vs. Toledo
Amos is coming off of an underperformance against Ball State, yielding only 37 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. However, he topped 20 FD points in each of the three games before that, and there's a history here that suggests plenty of upside. Before holding the last couple of opponents slightly under average, the Rocket allowed three straight to go 25 percent plus over average, including the previous matchup with the Redhawks. Amos got his fill in that game as well, posting 10 carries for 55 yards and a touchdown, but Kenny Tracy also saw a sizable run in that contest. Tracy has been phased out of the same plan more in the last couple of weeks, handling the rock a total of just four times. Tracy notched the RedHawks' second rushing score for running backs last week, and I would expect any instance of that to fall to Amos this time around.
I initially had just Davis in here for UNLV, but after looking at the numbers and vulnerabilities, it seemed Thomas is also worth a shot if you're looking to save up for other players. Thomas has found pay dirt a whopping 12 times (only six for Davis) this season on the ground, including thrice last week against San Jose State. Well, the Broncos have yielded a slate-high 15 rushing touchdowns to opposing running backs this year. That said, the Broncos have also yielded 150-plus rushing yards to three of the last four opponents. While that does include one service academy (Air Force last week), Utah State (152) and Fresno Stat (151) each hit the mark as well. Davis has topped 60 rushing yards in five of the last seven games, while Thomas hasn't surpassed 50 since Week 4, so the rushing yardage upside is on Davis' side. Considering the Broncos have held opposing QBs under average in each of the last five weeks while opposing backs have gone over average in two of the last four, it may be worth a shot here on a UNLV squad expected to put up 28 as just 2.5-point underdogs.
Roberts' matchup isn't the greatest, but it just makes sense to give him a look at running back if Noel is unavailable. The Mountaineers traditionally run the ball well and keep backs involved, and Roberts posted 14 carries for 109 yards and a touchdown last week in Noel's absence, more than doubling the carries of any other back on the team. He would presumably claim a hefty workload Saturday as well, and he also contributes to the passing attack, reeling in four passes for 46 total yards between the last two games.
Wide Receiver/Tight End
Worthy and the Longhorns sport the highest expected scoring total on the slate, and he's been the team's most consistent option at wide receiver this year, tallying at least seven targets in eight straight games and posting double-digit FD points in all but three games this year. He's one of the more reliable options at wideout on the slate and faces a Cowboys defense that has yielded 10 percent under or better fantasy production to wideouts in each of the last seven games. While four of those games were under average, three also resulted in wideouts going 40-plus percent over average. Worthy is an ideal cash games candidate and is still worthy (pun intended) of a look in GPPs. However, GPPs are where I feel Mitchell takes the cake. Mitchell has lower lows than Worthy, posting a combined 9.2 FD points in the last two games, but he also has higher highs, going over 20 FD points three times while Worthy has yet to do so. I'd probably tilt in Mitchell's direction for GPP formats, though Mitchell is a safer option if you feel good about the rest of your lineup.
Roman Wilson, Michigan ($8,300) vs. Iowa
Wilson was banged up fro a couple of weeks prior to The Game, notching a total of one target between the games against Penn State and Maryland. He returned to a normalized workload last week and yielded six targets in the contest. With Iowa's stingy run defense not allowing much in terms of results and and Jim Harbaugh back on the sidelines, I wouldn't be surprised if the Wolverines unleash more of the passing attack Saturday. Wilson has four games under his belt with 18.8 or more FD points this year, and while that may not be in the cards Saturday, Michigan will have to score somehow, and that's all Wilson does. The Hawkeyes' secondary showed some cracks post-Cooper DeJean last week, going for 53 percent above-average production, and Wilson could find some of that success this week.
Kaedin Robinson, Appalachian State ($7,800) at Troy
As underdogs in this contest, I will probably lean toward the Mountaineers' passing attack Saturday (even though I highlighted a running back option if Noel sits), and Robinson has been front-and-center in that arena over the past couple of weeks. Despite turning in back-to-back weeks with two scoring touchdowns and 20-plus FD points, Robinson still checks in at just $7,800 salary. Even though his average is just 12.9 FD points on the year, Troy has allowed two of his last three opponents to go for 22 percent or more above average, allowing four receiving touchdowns by wideouts in the last three games. Robinson has scored in four straight, and he can certainly put up yardage to boot. As mentioned, the fact that the Mountaineers are 5.5-point underdogs also suggests the passing attack may be in operation more often this week.
The "if Rodemaker plays" distinction here is very important. From what little we've seen of Rodemaker, Wilson appears to be his favorite target, drawing 10-11 targets last week (depending on the source) compared to Keon Coleman's 5-6, of which just one was completed to Coleman. Wilson finished the day with six grabs for 64 yards, and the Louisville secondary isn't particularly scary, allowing above-average production to two of the last three wideout rooms they've faced.
Tracy went through most of the season with no more than three targets and two catches in a single game, but things have quickly turned a corner over the last pair of games. In the absence of Larvadain, Tracy has formed a connection with starting quarterback Aveon Smith, hauling in a combined 11 passes for 193 yards over the last two. Tracy has just one touchdown under his belt this year, but he has also been minimally involved as a wideout overall before the last two when he made a move into the slot after working outside previously. If that slot spot remains open for Tracy, he could have another big game on tap versus a Rockets defense that has yielded above-average results from opposing wideouts of six percent and 39 percent in the last two games.