By Sean Weymouth
I’d like to ask that you take a moment to consider what we are about to see tonight on Monday Night Football.
Eli Manning is starting for the Giants. We all know that Eli was put on the bench earlier this year in favor of Daniel Jones. Most likely once Daniel Jones gets over his injury, Eli will also find himself back riding the pine. And suppose you are a two time Superbowl champion quarterback, finding himself riding the pine at the end of an extremely disappointing season, with your contract up – what do you do then? Face the idea of being a backup somewhere else in Free Agency? Face a starting role on likely another bad team? Or would you choose retirement, cash in the good will of a long and relatively successful career. So here we are December 9th 2019 and Eli will be on Monday Night Football – potentially, for the last time. Could this be Eli’s Swan Song? As a Patriots Loyalist, it pains me to write this but let’s take just a minute to applaud what will likely be a Hall of Fame career …
Eli Manning goes into tonight a perfect 50/50 with 116 Wins, 116 Loses. He has a career completion percentage of 60.3%. He has thrown for over 56,000 yards and has a total of 362 Touchdowns to 241 Interceptions. Also, he has collectively accounted for 3,286.2 fantasy points. He is a two time Superbowl Champion, a 4x Pro Bowl selection and the 2016 Walter Payton Man is the Year.
So for a second tonight, whether you are an Eli guy or gal or not – take a second as you finish your lineups and settle in to watch the game to give a nod with your beer; wine or otherwise to Eli. It may be the last time you see him under the bright lights of Monday Night.
I hate him, but that’s just me I’m a Pats Fan. You don’t have to if you don’t want to. With all that being said, let’s talk some DFS:
Las Vegas has the Eagles -9.5 tonight which is a lot of you ask me but take that for what it’s worth.
With all the gaga I wrote above, you’d be expecting me to endorse Eli Manning ($8,200) as a Captain or even a play tonight. Well – you’d be right. Eli has something to prove to himself, his team, his coaches and to potential teams that may have interest this off season. He also has MOST of his weapons healthy and available and despite the Eagles’ secondary being better than late – they can still be had. I think Eli is in a good spot especially since he’s had 12 weeks of rest. I actually like him tonight as a Captain or Flex.
So let’s talk about Eli’s weapons starting with Saquon Barkley ($10,600). The Eagles have be down right stingy to running backs this season. Currently they are 3rd Best Against the run holding opposing backs to 91 yards. However two weeks ago Rashaad Penny took 14 Carries for 129 Yards and a score against them. So the mountain can be climbed in other words. But it is Barkley himself and maybe the team around him that is the real concern. For instance Barkley has not scored a Touchdown since Week 7 and has not gone over 100 yards since Week 2. Sure there was an injury in the middle of that, which can be debated if he ever fully healed from but he will be a risky play tonight especially as the second highest priced player on the slate. Of all of Eli’s weapons, he isn’t one of my priorities to fit in. But in a Giants stack (5-1) I’d recommend not leaving him off.
Now Eli’s pass catchers are a different story. Let’s start with Golden Tate ($8,000). This will be Eli’s first game with state but I expect Golden to be very busy tonight. With no Evan Engram or Rhett Ellison tonight, I think Tate will be the biggest beneficiary of Eli’s targets that would normally go to the tight end position. Then you have a long time favorite Eli target in Sterling Shepard ($7,200) who I also see getting a solid amount of targets from Eli and with an up and down injury laden season of his own, Shepard is priced nicely for the opportunity he has against the Eagles secondary. Next we have Darius Slayton ($6,800) who has been a favorite of Danny Dimes and could represent a deep threat tonight for Eli. We also have long Time Giant Cody Latimer ($200) who last week had 3 targets and back up to the back up tight end Kaden Smith ($2,200) who could be an extremely sneaky play against an Eagles team that just got lit up by Mike Gesicki for over 100 yards and a score.
Kicker Aldrick Rosas ($3,800) will be a strong play tonight as I expect the G Men to have drives stall in the red zone. Lastly the Giants Defense ($2,800) could also be a sneaky play tonight. It was just two weeks ago that the Giants hung a couple sacks and a couple interceptions on Mitch Trubisky and the Bears and perhaps having Eli out there could inspire them!
I like Eli as Captain surrounded by as many pass catchers as I can and rounding out with a Philly tight end or kicker. Believe it or not I have a lineup with Eli and Saquon and the Giants’ starting 3 WRs going tonight – try and figure that Rubicks Cube out. Remember, Garbage time points don’t count any less because they are garbage time. Just sayin’
Carson Wentz ($11,800) is the most expensive player on the slate tonight and I think with good reason. First this is a MUST WIN for the Eagles if they even have a dream of catching the Cowboys in the standings. Plus – they are coming off easily their most frustrating loss of the season against Miami. Over the last 3 Weeks Wentz has thrown for 774 yards and 5 touchdowns. He also has thrown 3 interceptions during that same span so you have to take the good and with the bad. But I like Wentz a lot tonight as Flex or Captain.
Believe it or not, the Giants are pretty good against Tight Ends… in fact they are #2 in the league against the position. So while I am not crazy about Zach Ertz ($9,400) I do like Dallas Goedert ($4,800). I am going to guess the Giants will go all out to stop Ertz, which will open up targets to Goedert.
Alshon Jeffery ($9,200) is in a smash spot today and I expect him to be the most popular play tonight – but I’ll eat that chalk. Jeffery had 16 Targets turning them into 9 for 137 and a score. If the Eagles do win by over 9 points I think Jeffery will have a lot to have gotten them there.
(Updated 6:40pm) Nelson Agholor ($5,400) is inactive tonight. Roster your Eagles Tight Ends and don’t forget JJ Arcega-Whiteside;
JJ Arcega-Whiteside ($2,000) may be an interesting dart throw tonight. After catching a 15 yard Touchdown last week, he may have carved himself more than 2 targets tonight.
Lastly let’s talk the Eagles Running Game. Jordan Howard ($6,400) is unlikely to play, which means this is Miles Sanders’ ($8,600) backfield once again. The Eagles did bring back Jay Ajayi ($1,600) who got 9 snaps last week but I think the Eagles back to own tonight is Sanders who’s touches have steadily gone up over the last 3 weeks (17 last week) as has his targets (5 last week). This could be his first 100 yard game with the Giants allowing 114 yards on the ground per game. And don’t forget it was a passing touchdown that got Sanders his score last week.
If I’m playing a lineup with Eli Manning in it you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll have a lineup with the Eagles Defense ($5,800) as well. It’s Eli Manning after all and despite the complimentary tone of this article – it’s still Eli Manning and it’s the first time he’s playing in 12 weeks too. The Eagles will brings a lot of pressure tonight and pressure with Eli can create turnovers. Period. We have a large enough sample size to agree on that one.
I also like Eagles Kicker Jake Elliot ($4,000) for the opportunity but not the price. In a game that the Eagles could dominate on both sides of the ball, you could be paying 4K for 4 extra points (4 fantasy points too). He nailed 3 of 4 against Miami last week so anything could happen, but I personally would prefer that 4K being used elsewhere.
I like the Eagles Stack with Wentz, Jeffery, a Tight End and Sanders. That stack will be very popular so it will be the Giants player you choose to come back around with that could be your difference maker. I like Tate in that roll or tight end Smith.
Good Luck In Your Contests!