Welcome to the Thursday Night Showdown Slate for NFL Week 4!

Gross, right? You have to wonder what the schedule-makers were thinking when they said, “Hey! Broncos/Jets? This ought to be a good one for prime-time!” Were they trying to get the lowest ratings possible? Now, granted, the Broncos were a team of emerging young talent. You had Drew Lock , Courtland Sutton and Noah Fant being joined by some electric wideouts in Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler. But the Jets? Come on. Any team led by Adam Gase is just a waste for luring in viewers. And now, to make matters worse, the Broncos are falling apart thanks to the ol’ injury bug.

But points are points in DFS and whether this game finishes 10-6 or 3-0, it doesn’t matter. We will still have a winner in our Showdown contests. Now how we sift through this debacle of a player pool is the key, so let’s take a look at how this game could go.

Before we start, please allow me to reiterate that while we all love having a little skin in the game, these showdown slates are basically lottery tickets. Sure, there are times when the chalk hits and everyone shares in the prizes, but more often than not, you need that random, differentiate yourself from the herd dart-throw to hit in order to claim that top prize. As a result, we encourage to play responsibly. Stick to the GPP contests (single-entry preferred), don’t blow your whole bankroll and understand that, unless you are a max-entry player, you should prioritize having fun.

OK, lecture over. Let’s get to tonight’s action.

Denver Broncos at New York Jets

Spread: Jets -1

O/U: 41

Betting Facts:

The line actually opened at Denver -2.5, but after the announcement that Brett Rypien would start under center, it has since flipped to put the Jets as the favorite. The total has not changed since opening at 41.

Money Line: Jets -115; Broncos +102

The Jets head coach is 11-22-1 against the spread in his career after a loss, and he's 10-16-1 ATS following a double-digit defeat. Gase is also 5-11-1 ATS after his team scores 14 or fewer points in the previous game. Gase is also 0-4 ATS on Thursday nights.

The Broncos are riding a 10-3 ATS run on Thursday games. They're also 6-2 ATS over their last eight after a loss under head coach Vic Fangio.

Weather: Mid-60s, partly cloudy with zero chance of precipitation; winds W 4-5mph

Last 5 Match-Ups:

Broncos lead 3-2

Average margin of victory of all games: 12.6

Last Match-Up: Jets beat the Broncos 34-16 on 10/7/2018

Notable Injuries:


Drew Lock (shoulder – out)

Phillip Lindsay (toe – doubtful)

Jerry Jeudy (ribs)


Le'Veon Bell  (hamstring – out/IR)

Breshad Perriman (ankle – out)

Jamison Crowder (hamstring – questionable but expected to play)

Chris Hogan (knee – questionable)

Prop Bets to Watch:

The reason we are listing these here is to help you understand what the Vegas expectations are. If you aren’t routinely amazed by how accurate spreads and totals are, you haven’t been paying attention and you’re missing out on a valuable tool. Take a look at the list below and understand how to utilize for DFS. When you see the over and under have the same money line, that’s Vegas’ way of saying it can go either way. You have the base number and can determine whether you use a player or not based on that. But when there is a different money line on the over and unders (highlighted in green), Vegas is telling you what to expect. A negative money line means they feel it is more likely to happen which can help you make decisions regarding which players to play.

Sam Darnold Passing Yards: 227.5 (over & under -112); TD Passes: 1.5 (over +134; under -167)

Brett Rypien Passing Yards: 219.5 (over +140; under -177); TD Passes: 1.5 (over +180; under -235)

Frank Gore Rushing Yards: 53.5 (over & under -112)

La'Mical Perine Rushing Yards: 26.5 (over & under -112)

Melvin Gordon Rushing Yards: 65.5 (over & under -112); Receiving Yards: 21.5 (over & under -112)

Jamison Crowder Receiving Yards: 54.5 (over & under -112)

Braxton Berrios Receiving Yards: 40.5 (over & under -112)

Chris Hogan Receiving Yards: 26.5 (over & under -112)

Jerry Jeudy Receiving Yards: 51.5 (over -139; under +115)

Tim Patrick Receiving Yards: 31.5 (over & under -112)

K.J. Hamler Receiving Yards: 33.5 (over & under -112)

Christopher Herndon Receiving Yards: 35.5 (over & under -112)

Noah Fant Receiving Yards: 44.5 (over -175; under +135)

Here’s a breakdown of which players we suggest looking at for tonight:


Sam Darnold , NYJ – The Broncos D is dealing with a variety of injuries across the board on defense and are struggling against the pass. They rank 26th in DVOA against the pass and are allowing an average of 277.7 yards per game through the air. Darnold gets Jamison Crowder back and is in dire need of a strong performance before the talk of tanking for Trevor Lawrence heats up even more.

Brett Rypien, DEN – The family history isn’t going to get it done as Rypien steps into the starting role. The Jets are weak against the pass, but it seems like Vic Fangio and Pat Shurmur are hellbent on running the ball as much as possible. You can tell by the passing yards prop that 220 yards is going to be a stretch, so best to avoid the unknown here.

Running Backs:

Frank Gore , NYJ – He’s average 18 carries per game since taking over for the injured Le’Veon Bell, and amassed 120 yards for a 6.7 yards per carry average. The numbers aren’t eye-popping and Gore is 37 years old, but Gase loves him and is going to keep handing him the ball. Teams are passing on the Broncos more than running, as evidenced by the 84.3 rushing yards per game allowed, but given your other options on the slate, using a guy who is going to touch the ball at least 15 times is probably a good direction to take.

La'Mical Perine, NYJ – He saw almost the same number of snaps as Gore last week, but touched the ball only half as much. The Vegas rushing yards props tell me it will be more of the same, so unless you can accurately predict Perine to break a fluke, long touchdown, he’s probably just a dart throw.

Kalen Ballage , NYJ -- He saw some passing down work last week as the Jets were in catch-up mode throughout the day. Could he get a few targets again? Possibly. But given the issues with Denver's offense it seems unlikely that the Broncos will be blowing out the Jets which may limitthe snaps. Of course, he's Adam gase's BFF so anything can happen.

Melvin Gordon , DEN – Probably the only guy on this slate who is a must-start and probably the only guy who is bona fide Captain/MVP worthy. The Jets do contain the run well, but given that Rypien is under center and Fangio/Shurmur seem to be keeping things conservative, we’ll look to Gordon for our lineups tonight.

Royce Freeman , DEN – Despite the increase in snaps last week, Freeman still didn’t touch the ball too often. He actually slots in more as a pass-catcher, so he could get a few check-downs his way and if that comes inside the red zone, maybe he finds his way into the end zone? A long-shot, but I won’t rule it out completely. Could be an intriguing dart-throw for this showdown.

Wide Receivers:

Jamison Crowder , NYJ – While listed as questionable earlier in the day, Crowder is expected to be on the field and, as a result, pops up on our radar in this match-up. Braxton Berrios has played the slot in Crowder’s absence, but he’ll move to the outside and let the incumbent match-up with Essang Bassey. If you are leery of the Jets run defense and don’t want to use Melvin Gordon as your Captain/MVP, Crowder definitely makes for a solid choice.

Braxton Berrios , NYJ – He’ll likely move to the outside and square off with Bryce Callahan a bunch. That doesn’t bode well for Berrios, but the Jets are going to want to keep him involved. If setting multiple lineups, he warrants consideration.

Chris Hogan , NYJ – Still a little banged up, but Hogan can work the outside with his speed and maybe stretch the field a little. It’s not a real ringing endorsement, but sometimes you just have to play the cards you’ve been dealt.

Josh Malone , NYJ – With Crowder back, Malone will lose snaps this week which makes him an even less-desirable dart-throw. He saw some decent targets in Week 2, but that was simply out of sheer desperation.

Jerry Jeudy, DEN – He should be the most-targeted receiver for the Broncos and the Jets rank dead last in DVOA vs opposing No. 1 wideouts. Even with Jeudy working out of the slot, the question is, what kind of chemistry does he have with Rypien? That’s going to be the issue. You can certainly put your eggs into the Jeudy basket, but you may want to look deeper into the Broncos wideouts and see who Rypien has been spending the most time at practice with this season.

Tim Patrick , DEN – Similar analysis as Jeudy in that we expect him to get a fair number of targets and the Jets struggle in coverage, but how comfortable are he and Rypien together? From an on-paper standpoint, he’s a decent option, but if I’m using two pass-catchers from Denver in my lineup, it’s one WR and a TE, and that receiver is more likely to be someone who goes across the middle on short, high-percentage passes.  

K.J. Hamler, DEN – He saw a strong increase in snaps last week, but still only five targets and three catches. Is Rypien that far off from Jeff Driskel l? Probably not. Maybe Fangio and Shurmur surprise us by letting Rypien air it out early and catch the Jets off-guard? If they do, this could hit.

DaeSean Hamilton , DEN – Hard to imagine the Broncos going with any four-receiver sets, but if they do, Hamilton could be an interesting dart-throw as he likes to come across the middle of the field.

Diontae Spencer, DEN – dart-throw who may or may not have practiced with Rypien

Tyrie Cleveland, DEN – dart-throw with a more interesting name than the guy above him in this write-up.

Tight Ends:

Christopher Herndon , NYJ – We’re all still waiting on Herndon to be a fantasy factor, yet, the disappointment mounts. Maybe this week is different? The Broncos are giving up the 10th-most fantasy points per game to the tight end position and rank 17th in DVOA against them, allowing 61.7 yards per game.

Ryan Griffin , NYJ – Well if the throw doesn’t go to Herndon, it could go to Griffin, right? Maybe a blind squirrel finds a nut here.

Noah Fant, DEN – Finally, another player we may look to as our Captain/MVP. Young, inexperienced quarterbacks tend to lean on their tight end and Fant will see the bulk of the snaps for the Broncos. Hopefully there is some semblance of a rapport with him and Rypien, but if I had to put money on who leads the Broncos in targets tonight, it’s Fant.

Jake Butt , DEN – dart-throw with low upside

Nick Vannett , DEN – another dart-throw with low upside, but we can check with Sandro Anello’s optimizer on the Fantasy Alarm Show on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports radio tonight from 6-8pm ET.


NY Jets D/ST – They rank well against the run but terrible against the pass. We wish it were the reverse as Rypien could throw some picks, but we may still take a shot here considering the low total (41) and the Jets at home.

Denver Broncos D/ST – They don’t really win the turnover battle and they continue to have injuries pile up. Yes, a low scoring game, but still unlikely to rack up much in the way of sacks even.

Sam Ficken , NYJ – Sure, throw a dart at a kicker. Both offenses could struggle.

Brandon McManus , DEN – Same as Ficken. You can try it. Not much really there though.

If you are looking for lineup help, check out our NFL Lineup Generator which can be adjusted for Showdown Slates.