Super Bowl DFS Breakdown: Chiefs vs. 49ers

Super Bowl DFS Breakdown: Chiefs vs. 49ers

This article is part of our DFS NFL series.

We've reached the final game of the season, with the 49ers and Chiefs set to square off in Super Bowl LVIII. A decent number of points are projected, with most books set at 47-47.5. Unsurprisingly, the books also project the game to be close with the 49ers penciled in at a 2-2.5 point favorite. That leaves the 49ers with roughly a 25-point implied total and a 22.5-point implied total for the Chiefs.

There are a number of tournaments on both FanDuel and DraftKings for the big game. Both sites have a contest with $1 million to the winner ($9 buy-in on FD, $15 on DK) with plenty of other big prize pools also available at various price points and contest sizes.

Quarterback

Despite the 49ers status as the favored team, Patrick Mahomes ($10,600 DK/$15,000 FD) is the most expensive quarterback. Although the Chiefs have gone on an impressive and improbable postseason run, it hasn't been Mahomes behind the surge (at least statistically). He has four total touchdowns in three games, and the only efficient performance he had was against Buffalo. The 49ers' defense has been maligned entering this game, but the unit has allowed only 6.2 yards per attempt in the postseason. It's relatively safe to pencil in Mahomes for 17 or so fantasy points, but this doesn't line up to be a ceiling game.

Brock Purdy ($10,000 DK/$14,500) is priced similarly to Mahomes on FD, but Travis Kelce is priced between them on DK. The story for Purdy is similar to that of Mahomes in the postseason in that his statistical output hasn't been particularly impressive, and he hasn't thrown for multiple touchdowns in three of his last five games overall. The draw is the matchup, which has turned drastically from the regular season. The Chiefs have been torched by Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson in each of their last two games. The fairly obvious distinction between that duo and Purdy is mobility, but there is more upside for Purdy than Mahomes.

From a macro perspective, to take down a big tournament it will be important to build a unique lineup. Fading both quarterbacks is a straightforward way to do that, and their point-per-dollar projection makes it a viable path to the top of the leaderboard.

Running Back

Christian McCaffrey ($12,200 DK/$17,500 FD) is rightly the most expensive player on the slate on both sites. He's been a force in every important area, including on the ground, as a pass catcher and near the goal line. The Chiefs have been among the toughest matchups all season for running backs, but McCaffrey is in a class of his own.  

Flipping to the other side, Isiah Pacheco ($8,000 DK/$12,500 FD) is a standout value, particularly on DK. Assuming Jerick McKinnon ($200 DK/$6,000 FD) isn't activated from IR, Pacheco will get a lot of volume. He doesn't have the pass-catching upside of McCaffrey, but he can keep pace on the ground and also has a great role near the goal line.

If McKinnon surprisingly suits up, he could be a value option, particularly on DK thanks to pass-catching. Otherwise, the backups don't carry much intrigue. Elijah Mitchell ($2,800 DK/$7,000 FD) has only four carries in two postseason games, Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($1,200 DK/$6,500 FD) has 10 carries in three matchups. The one exception could be Kyle Juszczyk ($800 DK/$5,500 FD). He's a true punt option and would open a lot of salary elsewhere. Of his 19 touches this season, seven have come inside the red zone, four inside the 10 and two inside the 5.

Wide Receiver/Tight End

Travis Kelce ($10,200 DK/$13,000 FD) is the highest-priced pass catcher on both sites. Any concerns about his regular-season struggles have been answered by both his production and involvement in the offense this postseason. He leads the team in targets (27), yards (262) and touchdowns (three) since the wild-card round. He also has four explosive plays in that span after posting just 12 during the regular season. That doesn't mean we should overlook Rashee Rice ($7,600 DK/$11,000 FD). He is the clear 1B option in the KC offense and could easily outscore Kelce at a discounted price. That duo have combined for 52 of 91 total Chiefs targets in the postseason.

The two other primary receivers in the Kansas City offense are Marquez Valdes-Scantling ($3,000 DK/$7,500 FD) and Justin Watson ($2,400 DK/$6,500 FD). Although maligned for his performance during the regular season, MVS has been a big-play threat and has run the third-most routes on the team this postseason. There will need to be value plays on this slate, and he is one good potential option.

Things are a bit more spread out in the San Francisco offense. We've discussed the dynamic between Brandon Aiyuk ($8,800 DK/$10,500 FD) and Deebo Samuel ($9,200 DK/$11,500 FD) in past seasons. Aiyuk has been the steadier producer, posting at least 13 FD points in five of his last seven games (excluding Week 18, when starters didn't play), but he's topped 14.3 points just once in that span. Samuel has spiked to close the season but has been slowed by a shoulder injury this postseason. There's a chance Aiyuk has the better game, but a true spike performance is more likely to come from Samuel. I'm comfortable paying the premium for Samuel on either site.

At one point, George Kittle ($6,400 DK/$10,000 FD) would be named alongside Aiyuk and Samuel, but his price has slipped enough that he's worth mentioning separately. There's an interesting positive case for him. Of 78 postseason snaps on which the 49ers have run passing plays, Kittle has run a route on 73 (per PFF). He has only nine targets, but that could spike due to his usage.  

On DK and considering price, I'd rank the elite options: Rice, Samuel, Kelce, Aiyuk, Kittle.

On FD: Samuel, Rice, Kelce, Aiyuk, Kittle.

As for depth options, with Samuel back in the mix, Jauan Jennings (4,000 DK/$7,000 FD) has a minimal role in the San Francisco offense. Kansas City offers a few more interesting cheap options in Kadarius Toney ($1,400 DK/$6,000 FD) and Skyy Moore ($2,000 DK, $5,000 FD). There's not much statistical backing for playing them, but at their price, they really need only one big play to contribute to a lineup. Assuming they suit up, both will be on the field for the first time since Week 15.  

Kickers

With the exception of MVS, there aren't many great options in the middle tier of pricing. That brings both Harrison Butker ($5,000 DK/$9,500 FD) and Jake Moody ($5,200 DK/$9,000 FD) into play. Moody has had limited volume — he's attempted multiple field goals only seven times in his last 16 games — but he has a safe floor thanks to the ultra-efficient 49ers offense. Butker is by far the better play on paper, though team context does fall in favor of Moody.

Defense/Special Teams

Each defense has something going for it. The Chiefs ($3,400 DK/$9,000 FD) have among the best pass rushes in the league, as they ranked second in the league with 3.2 sacks per game during the regular season. Unfortunately, they were far less successful at forcing turnovers and face an offense that effectively limits sacks. This doesn't look like a game that the unit will force big plays.

The 49ers ($4,400 DK/$8,500 FD) are in the opposite situation. They have a middling pass rush but are elite at forcing turnovers. That opens more possibility of a big game, and they particularly stand out on FD due to price.  

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Dan Marcus plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: marcusd91 DraftKings: dmarcus87.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dan Marcus
Dan started covering fantasy sports in 2015, joining Rotowire in 2018. In addition to Rotowire, Dan has written for Baseball HQ and Rotoballer.
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