Duke’s DraftKings EPL Pick Em Is LIVE!!

Up and at em with team news. 

Updates: Son starts for Tottenham.  I’d move him ahead of Alli. 

Rashford AND Martial start.  Mata, Pogba and Matic midfield.  VERY attacking lineup.  Could be a bump for Lukaku and knock Pogba a little bit back as he’ll have to do more defending that usually.  I expect United to have 65-70% possession so all will have opportunities.  I will probably have a heavy United team and sprinkle in a few in others. 

Looking into Liverpool H/A splits has me wanting exposure to the Liverpool side of that game.  Absolutely the only game that could have both sides shootout.  They have 4 wins and 2 draws scoring 12 goals while only conceding 1. 

How’d you do last week?  If you used my picks, you crushed.  Simple as that. Happy Thanksgiving.  I’m thankful for you guys who read this blog.  Hopefully you appreciate the winners and forgive the losers.  This year so far we’ve been all over the nuts.  Let’s get into this weeks options.

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Small little slate here.  Note that the times listed are in Central as I’m visiting the inlaws in Wisconsin, hence the blog on Thanksgiving.  Kick off is the usual 10am with 12:30 afternoon blockbuster of Chelsea/Liverpool.  Here are the betting lines.

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Not a ton of high totals.  United and Tottenham are the big favorites.  The Liv/Che game seems like it could go off with each team’s issues at the back.  Let’s look at the tiers.

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West Brom are in shambles are were absolutely destroyed by Chelsea last weekend, leading to boss Tony Pulis losing his job.  He seemed like the glue keeping a horrendous roster together in the first place.  Is another slaughter session on the cards this week?  Tottenham got back on track at Borussia Dortmund with a goal from Kane.  Eriksen has been as solid as anyone this season.  They are a heavy favorite so the same play is to take either player.  I’d prefer Kane because Tottenham win the game by a goal or more and when they score, it’s usually their number 9.  Kane has multi-goal upside.

Lukaku looked awful in Basil but Mourinho has kept the faith.  He repaid that faith last weekend with a goal.  He could pop up with one again.  Brighton have been pretty stingy at the back so I’m not in love with the play.  Zlatan is almost all the way back but I’m not going there until I see 2 things:  1) He gets on the scoresheet. 2) He gets 70 minutes or more.

Richarlison is my sleeper pick of the day.  He’s scored in his last 2 and been over 20 points in 3 of his last 4.  With a lot of ownership going to the first 3 players in the tier, I think he’s a great GPP option.   Let’s rank em.

Tier 1:  Kane, Richarlison, Lukaku, Eriksen

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We can never risk a 0 in a tier no matter how good the player.  Luckily at least 1 of 2 Liverpool players will start and play the 90.  3 consecutive shutouts by Chelsea have me a bit nervous using Liverpool players.  Are Liverpool broken mentally from coughing up a 3 goal lead or are they extra motivated to prove that was a fluke?  I’d prefer Salah to Coutinho if you go there.

Pogba is BACK!  And back in a big way.  Everything is going through him and he’s a great option.  The reservation here is that Pogba hasn’t completed the 90 minutes yet since he’s come back and this will be his 3rd game in 8 days.

Tottenham have been on one hell of a run of games:  Liverpool, United, Real Madrid, Arsenal, Borussia Dortmund.  Iron sharpens iron and I think they will roll here.  In saying that I need multiple pieces and Alli is a good way to do so.  IF Hueng-Min starts then I’ll ride the hot hand and go with him.  I love that’s ranked last on FPPG as well.

Rash and Martial are so hit and miss.  Both are strictly GPP options since they can unlock a defense at a moments notice.  I will say that of the 2, I’d prefer Martial but I’d prefer Pogba over either if you are trying to get exposure to United.

Tier 2:  Salah, Pogba, Alli, Hueng-Min, Coutinho

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I would think you would go either Morata or Hazard here.  Hazard is absolutely on fire lately but Morata will be fresh after being rested save for a 25 minute cameo at midweek.  A quick reminder that Liverpool are TRASH against quality competition.  I see Chelsea continuing to roll and while they may not rack up 4 goals like they have in each of their last 2 games, you need exposure.

Mane is officially back, averaging over 12 points in 3 games in November.  With Chelsea’s defensive prowess and other attacking options I’m not sure I’m going there.

Shaqiri is solid but doesn’t have major upside.  He’s also played a lot of minutes in November already.  Crystal Palace aren’t great but will he get on the scoresheet?  He’s certainly not jumping into too many tackles or picking up interceptions for cheap points.  He is on set piece duty which helps.

Ritchie = Blah

Mkhitaryan = poor form.  I don’t want to be the first one on him.

Townsend/Llorente = no thanks.

Tier 3:  Hazard, Morata, Mane, Shaqiri

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As always, if Firmino leads the line for Liverpool he is in play.  He scored 2 goals midweek and has been in pretty good form regardless.

The play this week I think is Cabaye.  He’s been pivotal the last 3 games for Palace and I don’t see that slowing down v Stoke.  He does a little bit of everything and if he pops up with a Goal we are really in business.  Take your 12-15 points and move on.

Callum Wilson has the hot hand, scoring a hattrick last weekend.  He’s an interesting play.  He’s been out FOREVER after 2 ligament issues.  He obviously has the ability but do we trust his knees?  I’ll have some shares.

Davies is an OK play.  Blind is uninspiring and probably won’t start.  Abraham at home?  Maybe.  Mata could pop up with an assist like he did v Newcastle.  Sturridge and Milner are all about starting and positioning but I probably won’t have either.

Tier 4:  Cabaye, Firmino (if he starts up front), Wilson, Stanislas (if he starts), Sturridge (if he starts)

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In 4 of the last 5 games GroB has played for Brighton he’s either scored a goal or had an assist.  In spite of those tremendous stats, his highest DK total was 19, when he whipped in 12 crosses and had an assist.  Is it fool’s gold?  Probably.  I don’t see Brighton going off AT United.  Probaby a fade for me.

I think I’m looking to Trippier this weekend.  I’m hoping game log watchers see that 2 in his last game and pass.  If you look back on teams Tottenham have had a possession advantage, Trippier get’s forward and puts in a billion crosses.  Let’s go there.

Other plays that are OK:

Pedro – He may not start and I don’t think Batshuayi is healthy, nor will Solanke play.  VERY RISKY and probably not worth it.

Holebas – I wouldn’t be mad if you played him.  He’ll be solid but unspectacular.  I don’t hate pairing him with Richarlison in GPPs if you want to get funky.

Choupo-Moting – He’s had either a goal or an assist in 3 of his last 4.  However, in 2 of his last 5 he’s put up 1 and 2 points.  Yikes.  Upside play if you think Stoke

The 1% GPP flier is Benteke.  If he starts and you REALLY wanted to differentiate you can go there.  I’m not.  He probably won’t start.

Tier 5: Trippier, Holebas, GroB, Choupo-Moting


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There are a couple of interesting things to consider here.

  1. Swansea are tanking.  Bournemouth are playing MUCH better of late and with Wilson back could be in for the win.  With a potential clean sheet as well, Begovic/Boruc are definitely in play.
  2. Chelsea have been unbelievable with 3 clean sheets in a row.  Much tougher competition is coming in Liverpool.  Do they keep another to make it 4 in a row?  Christ, I can’t see that.  Courtois should have to make some saves.
  3. Watford aren’t great at the back but tend to give up shots from outside the box leading to easy saves for Gomes, allowing him to pile up points.

Tier 6:  Begovic, Gomes, Courtois


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