NFL DFS Pace of Play for Week 6 (Fantasy Football)

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Pace of play gives the prospective DFS player an opportunity to consider not just Vegas totals but how the game will be played out in a given week. Game flow is a tricky rabbit hole to jump down when you consider the endless scenarios that can play out in a game. Stacking up-tempo offenses who can keep the ball moving is crucial to gaining an edge in DFS. Even slight differentiations of team trends matters in a world where volume is king. Over the last three years, on average, teams ran a play 0.8 seconds per play slower in positive game scripts than they did in neutral game script.

Each week I’ll highlight five game environments factoring in their pace metrics, stacks to consider for tournaments, and five dart throws to shoot for the moon with.

A reminder on a simple metric I introduced last year: Game Pace Score(GPS). I liked the acronym to also give you a “compass” of how the game total and neutral pace statistics come together. These scores are ranked 1-5 with five indicating the pace of the play is everything you want for a DFS bonanza.

  • 5– Back-and-forth shootout is looming. Both teams are pace up and both sport team implied totals of 25+.
  • 4– An up-tempo spot worth game stacking in DFS in multiple ways. Consider multiple game scripts in play.
  • 3– This game could go either way. Often, these are onslaught spots for teams with healthy implied totals or games that hit the under because two middling offenses collide.
  • 2– Strong indications of a game you want to stay away from. Usually, the pace is dragged down by one team with an absurdly slow neutral pace or a team with a team implied total so low it drags the entire game environment through the mud.
  • 1– This has all the makings of a plodder. These games have totals hovering UNDER 40 which gives you zero confidence in DFS.

For Week 6, I’ve split up each team’s implied totals, seconds per play, neutral situation pace, and combined that for a final GPS score.

Make sure to check out the DFS Podcast where Betz and I break down the main slate and highlight some of our favorite plays of the week.

Normally, I would highlight 4-5 games each week but this slate isn’t one I’m trying to get too cute with. I’ll highlight

Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs (+2.5) – O/U: 54

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Sec/Play Neutral Sit. Pace Pass Rate Over Exp.
Team Implied Total
Buffalo Bills 7 9 1 28.3
Kansas City Chiefs 21 16 2 25.8

You might be surprised to see BUF/KC at only a 4.5 in our GPS Scores. Obviously, it’s the best of the week and easily two of the best teams in the NFL. They rank 1 & 2 in pass rate over expectation, top-2 inside the red-zone and we all remember their epic AFC divisional game from last year. So why not a perfect 5.0 Kyle? If I had to poke holes, Kansas City does not play nearly as fast as you like. Last year, these two teams met in Week 8 (also in Arrowhead) and KC stumbled with four turnovers despite taking control of the game clock. Tyreek Hill‘s absence has changed the way the offense functions. Mahomes’ propensity to throw deep has slowly gone from a league-leading 16% of his attempts in his MVP year to 26th in the league through five weeks.

Year % 20+ Att. aDOT YPA
2018 15.9% 9.5 8.8
2019 13.0% 8.7 8.3
2020 12.4% 8.9 8.1
2021 10.5% 7.6 7.4
2022 9.5% 7.9 7.4

To give some context, Mahomes has completed as many 20+ yard pass plays (7) as Mitch Trubisky and only one more than Marcus Mariota or Jacoby Brissett. This is no knock on Mahomes. You could argue he’s been even better (#1 in EPA per passing play) with what he has but that he’s had to evolve with how defenses have attacked him (2 high safeties) and more zone looks league-wide. It is worth noting that Buffalo’s defense ranks #1 in explosive pass rate allowed. If I’m playing Mahomes, the options are a bit dicey outside of Travis Kelce. Marquez Valdes-Scantling finally had some life last week but Juju Smith-Schuster looks completely dusted running routes. I’m personally single-stacking Mahomes and hoping I connect on the right piece. Clyde Edwards-Helaire ran hot the first couple of weeks but inefficiency was always knocking on the door. The Bills are allowing the 2nd highest target success rate to the RB position if there is a chink in their armor.

The magic elixir for last year’s epic playoff matchup was the teams all but abandoning designed runs for the RBs. Kansas City (19 RB attempts) and Buffalo (13) are not committed to establishing it. In fact, 75% of the offensive plays in that game were in the hands of the QB (rush + pass attempts) which is why Josh Allen is such a cheat code. The best part about Buffalo’s passing game is they’ve diversified their approach this year. The screen game is starting to get worked in but the downfield bombs (especially those to Gabe Davis last week) get all the headlines.

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