FanDuel College Football DFS Picks: Week Zero Plays and GPP Tournament Strategy

FanDuel College Football DFS Picks: Week Zero Plays and GPP Tournament Strategy

This article is part of our DFS College Football series.

FanDuel College Football: Week 0 Plays and Tournament Strategy

It's that time of year again! As ever, RotoWire is all-hands-on-deck for the 2022-23 College Football season, providing DFS advice for all slates on DraftKings and FanDuel. We have a vast array of tools to help construct your DFS rosters, with our slate-specific columns a great place to start. Today's article focuses on FanDuel's seven-game main slate for Week 0, which kicks off with the Austin Peay/Western Kentucky game at 12:00 p.m. ET.

Week 0 Odds and Matchups

Western Kentucky (-21.5) vs. Austin Peay O/U: 67.5

Nebraska (-13.5) @ Northwestern O/U: 50.5

Illinois (-11) vs. Wyoming O/U: 43.5

Utah State (-26.5) vs. Connecticut O/U: 59.5

Florida Atlantic (-7) vs. UNC Charlotte O/U: 60.5

UNLV (-7)  vs. Idaho State O/U: 40.5

Florida State (-38.5) vs. Duquesne O/U: 55.5

We're going to give a lot of action to FAU and Charlotte, with WKU and Utah State not far behind. Scary spots are a low-scoring affair between UNLV and Idaho State, and a blowout risk for the Seminoles against Duquesne. I'm intrigued to see if Nebraska's typical run-first approach will shift with transfer Casey Thompson, but I'm hesitant to pull the trigger against out-matched Northwestern.

College Football DFS Tools

WEATHER REPORT

DUQ@FSU: 85% chance of rain, 90 degrees, 11 MPH winds

CHAR@ FAU: 85% chance of rain, 85 degrees, 10 MPH winds

Rain is almost a guarantee for these two games, meaning a slight downgrade for passers and receivers, and a slight upgrade for running backs for these four teams.

FanDuel Main Slate Quarterback Picks

Logan Bonner, Utah State ($10,800) vs. Connecticut

Coach Blake Anderson directed the Aggies to a stellar 11-3 record last season, and Bonner excelled at the helm with 3,628 yards and 36 touchdowns. Utah State finished with the nation's 19th-ranked offense, and although Bonner lost a lot of tools in the season, he still has plenty of talent around him. Although there's merit to the idea that the Huskies are much improved, the team ranked 105th against the pass last year, and will likely have a hard time fending off a fast start through the air by Bonner and his receivers. The Aggies are in a bit of a rebuild defensively and could yield some points to UConn, but the home opener should be a cakewalk for Bonner and his squad.

N'Kosi Perry. FAU vs. Charlotte ($8,900)

Although the weather may pose a problem in this game, Perry has out-of-the-pocket speed that can get him out of sticky situations, and an overhauled offensive scheme under former MTSU OC Brent Dearmon should help get Perry to the next level. I also like the other side of this matchup, with Charlotte's Chris Reynolds ($8,600) registering in a few lineups thanks to his veteran receiving corps. I like them both over Jordan Travis, who might end up sitting before too long against a woeful Duquesne defense. Perry gets the edge in this game, but I am equally fine with Reynolds.

Austin Reed, Western Kentucky vs. Austin Peay ($11,700)

Some may balk at the elevated salary, but Reed, a transfer from West Florida, looks to be an intriguing sleeper pick despite topping FanDuel's QB pool. The Hilltoppers benefitted greatly from Houston Baptist QB Bailey Zappe and offensive coordinator Zach Kittley, but both are gone and WKU is back to the drawing board on offense. Saturday's game will be Reed's first FBS contest, but he has a battle-tested crew of receivers around him If his FCS numbers (3,418 yards and 38 touchdowns in 2021) are any judge, this could be a breakout year for Reed on a bigger stage.

FanDuel Main Slate Running Back Picks

Chase Brown, Illinois ($8,800) vs. Wyoming 

Wyoming is 1-19 against Big Ten opposition, and that trend should continue Saturday. Although the Illini will have an adjustment to make with Syracuse's Tommy DeVito as their new quarterback, they have a bonafide 1,000-yard rusher in Brown, who is in line for a nice stat line despite some other competition on the depth chart. Wyoming has much of their defense returning, and while they excelled in pass defense (1st in the Mountain West), their rushing defense was ranked 10th in the conference. These metrics provide a pretty good roadmap for the Illini to exploit the Cowboys. DeVito is less of a passer and more of a game manager, and that will involve giving Brown a lot of touches.

Johnny Ford, FAU ($8,300) vs Charlotte

Ford enters the season without the starting job, but the South Florida transfer will be hard to keep off the field.  Despite many struggles and injury concerns, coach Willie Taggart seems content with giving Larry McCammon the first crack at the starting gig. While the salary is a little high for a potential second-stringer, you have to like Ford on passing downs. He accumulated over 1,000 yards of total offense for FAU last season, with a third of that coming through the air.  With weather a concern in this game, Perry may find himself in need of Ford's hands as a checkdown after going through his progressions.

Shadrick Byrd, Charlotte ($6,200) @ FAU

Although this is a true RBBC alongside Calvin Camp ($5,900), I like Byrd just a bit better, although both will see a lot of work Saturday. Both backs are proficient pass-catchers as well, combining for 378 yards and three touchdowns through the air.  I don't recommend stacking the duo, but either player provides a stable floor at a median salary, which should help your bottom line considerably.

FanDuel Main Slate Wide Receiver Plays

Malachi Corley, Western Kentucky ($9,500) vs. Austin Peay

We've mentioned that Austin Reed is an expensive wildcard on this slate, and Corley s the stack you want to build if you're a believer. Most of the Hilltoppers' receiving weapons are gone, leaving Corley and Daewood Davis ($7,800) to lead the charge. If you're in need of some salary relief, Davis is a good pivot, as both receivers had similar numbers last season, but they are now running the show and it won't take long to find out who Reed prefers more. Although Davis did more with his looks, Corley had nearly double Davis' receptions last season, and those PPR points will add up.

Justin McGriff, Utah State ($7,100) vs. Connecticut

McGriff is the ideal stack with Bonner as he appears to be the top target for this high-flying offense.  The Aggies attacked the transfer portal and acquired some new talent, but McGriff will still lead the receiving corps. Despite the wide spread, the Huskies could give the Aggies some push-back, which would be your hope if you're counting on this QB/WR stack.  If things get out of hand, it could be Calvin Tyler's ($10,000) show instead. 

FanDuel Main Slate Tournament Plays

I would investigate some options for teams that we did not mention much here, like Duquesne, Austin Peay, and especially Connecticut. The Huskies have a hidden talent in transfer Ta'Quan Roberson ($6,600) at quarterback, and running back Nathan Carter ($5,800) has had an impressive camp. A little help from google will give you some useful insight about the other underdogs in these games, with a focus on those teams' passing games. Peppering your tournament entries with UConn and Austin Peay receivers could reap benefits.

Also, there is definitely an avenue to consider Florida State talent for a tournament lineup. The Seminoles will no doubt make a statement against this FCS opponent, and even three quarters of production will be enough to light up the board. 

FanDuel Week 0 Main Slate Picks Recap

QB: Austin Reed, N'Kosi Perry, Logan Bonner

RB: Chase Brown, Johnny Ford, Shadrick Byrd

WR: Justin McGriff, Malachi Corley

If you're looking to wager on college football this season, RotoWire has a full suite of betting pages and tools with everything you need from the latest college football odds to weekly college football picks along with updated college football futures and Heisman odds.

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.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeff Edgerton
Jeff has provided sports content for numerous sports outlets and has played fantasy sports since scores had to be tabulated via newspaper. He started working with RotoWire in 2017. Originally from South Carolina, he's a lifelong Clemson fan now enjoying the sun in Los Angeles.
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