The NFL is serving DFS single-game players a treat of a matchup to kick off Week 1 and the 2021 season, pitting the reigning champion Buccaneers against a replenished Cowboys team that lit up scoreboards over the first five games of last season when QB Dak Prescott was healthy. Vegas sportsbooks opened this matchup with an over/under of 53, the second highest on the slate, and installed the Bucs as six-point favorites. If we buy into those numbers, we should be looking for both teams to find the paint on multiple occasions on Thursday Night, which gives daily fantasy football players plenty of options for their DraftKings Showdown Lineup.
Whether you’re new to DFS single-game contests or an old veteran, it’s important to go over some of the basics and differences between various sites. On DraftKings, the key things to remember are that it’s full-point PPR and there are three-point bonuses for 300 passing yards, 100 rushing yards, and 100 receiving yards. The other big difference is highlighted in our Captain pick analysis, so let’s get right to it!
MORE DK SHOWDOWN: How to win a Showdown contest
DraftKings Showdown Picks: Cowboys vs. Buccaneers
$50,000 budget, need at least one player from each team.
Captain (1.5x value, 1.5x points): QB Dak Prescott, Cowboys ($15,600)
Unlike FanDuel and Yahoo, DraftKings makes you pay a premium for top player (“Captain” on DraftKings, “MVP” on FanDuel, and Superstar” on Yahoo), whose points are multiplied by 1.5. By choose an already expensive players, the increased salary places a burden on the bottom of our lineup, but there’s enough reason to be confident in our cheaper players paying dividends that we’re willing to absorb the risk of our dual-QB build. The Cowboys may want to ease Prescott into the 2021 season to a degree, but that’s a lot easier said than done when you’re in prime time on opening night and lined up across from the reigning Super Bowl champs. There’s too much pass-catching talent at Prescott’s disposal to shy away from him in this matchup.
FLEX: QB Tom Brady, Buccaneers ($11,200)
We expect big things from Brady in this prime-time showcase against what figures to once again be a subpar Dallas D. Getting both QBs in the lineup gives us a high floor and high ceiling, so let’s hope for a bit of a shootout (or Buccaneers rout).
FLEX: WR Chris Godwin, Buccaneers ($8,600)
Pinpointing the top performing wide receivers ahead of a particular Buccaneers game will be a challenge this season. Godwin is more than capable of emerging as the best of the trio in Thursday night’s showdown, and it’s certainly possible he does so with relatively modest ownership compared to his running mates. After all, Mike Evans did outproduce him in 2020, and Antonio Brown is significantly cheaper.
FLEX: WR Antonio Brown, Buccaneers ($5,600)
The Bucs are loaded in their wide receiver corps, so we’re going to double down this week. Brown will have a significant role and handle a healthy serving of targets this season. With the way Brady and the Bucs are likely to dish the rock, Brown will be a weekly threat to lead the receiving trio in fantasy points. His salary will catch up eventually, but until then, we want to enjoy the profits.
FLEX: Ronald Jones II, Buccaneers ($5,000)
We want a piece of every Bucs score, and Jones seems more likely to handle goal-line duties than Leonard Fournette. Plus, he’s more likely to the hit the 100-yard rushing bonus than Fournette thanks to his ability to hit chunk runs.
FLEX: K Ryan Succup, Buccaneers ($4,000)
We were serious when we said we want a piece of every Bucs point. It can feel like a letdown including a kicker in your lineup, but in a game with such a high projected total, there is reason to believe that Succop will get enough chances to make a fantasy impact. We’ll take it at a relatively cheap price.