Top Early Bargain NFL DFS Picks For Thursday Night Football: Isaiah McKenzie, Nelson Agholor, Hunter Henry, and Others

Top Early Bargain NFL DFS Picks For Thursday Night Football: Isaiah McKenzie, Nelson Agholor, Hunter Henry, and Others

If you’re looking for early Week 13 bargain NFL DFS picks before crafting your lineups, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve analyzed each team’s highest-probability game scripts to assess which player on each team has a great shot at outproducing expectations.

Bills vs. Patriots Considerations

This will be a heavyweight battle between two teams that would have dominated if they’d played in the NFC South. But alas, much like their NFC East brethren, this year’s AFC East features four squads that could reach the postseason.

You don’t need to hear about big names like Josh Allen, Stefon Diggs, or Rhamondre Stevenson. Even Gabe Davis seems obvious. If you can afford them in your DFS slate, they have high enough ceilings to merit strong consideration.

This column is about the true bargains — players who might be priced 50% or less than guys like Allen and Diggs. Some might even cost 90% less. Picking the right bargain could transform a competitive lineup into a tournament winner.

Top Early NFL DFS Picks for Thursday Night Football

Isaiah McKenzie

On Thanksgiving, Isaiah McKenzie was priced lower than teammate James Cook on many DFS sites. The 27-year-old started the year strong with three scores in his first four games.

But after mostly scuffling from Weeks 6 to 10, he hit rock bottom in Week 11 with a season-low 40% snap share and zero catches on one target.

And yet, context is everything. In that game, the Buffalo Bills focused on the run, as Allen attempted only 27 passes — including just 13 to his wideouts.

FanDuel Sportsbook: Risk-Free $3,000 Bet on the Super Bowl!
FanDuel Sportsbook: Risk-Free $3,000 Bet on the Super Bowl!

McKenzie was actually one of three Buffalo WRs to earn a target. He wasn’t getting phased out. Simply put, the game plan favored the run, presumably due in part to Allen’s elbow injury, and also because the opposing Browns have one of the worst run defenses.

Last Thursday, playing on a short week, Allen targeted his wideouts 30 times, as the running game took a backseat. Once again, McKenzie was one of only three receivers to get looks. And against a porous Lions defense, in hindsight, it shouldn’t have been a surprise to see him produce big numbers.

Because despite his erratic output, McKenzie is firmly entrenched in this offense. No doubt, the New England Patriots‘ defense this Thursday night will be tough. But landing a solid-upside WR3 for the price of a D/ST makes him a worthwhile DFS consideration.

Bills D/ST

Speaking of D/STs, Buffalo hasn’t quite lived up to the preseason hype, and my fantasy team is feeling the heat as a result. (In fairness, D/ST is the least of my team’s concerns.)

When tied or leading this season, Mac Jones has three passing touchdowns and two interceptions. When trailing, he has three passing scores and five picks on 20% fewer attempts.

MORE: Early Anytime TD Scorer Predictions Week 13

Targeting the relatively cheap Bills D/ST assumes Buffalo will lead throughout the game, and by a significant enough margin (10+ points) to force New England to largely abandon the run by late in the third quarter, if not sooner.

Because as great as Jones looked last week against Minnesota’s bottom-tier pass defense, it’s an entirely different calculus facing Buffalo (No. 2 in interceptions) on the road, especially if Jones is missing his No. 1 receiver.

Nelson Agholor

Speaking of Jones’s No. 1 receiver, as of Monday, Jakobi Meyers appears questionable for Thursday Night Football. As always, one player’s loss is another’s opportunity. Last week, Nelson Agholor was priced below all DFS kickers on most sites. Yet, he came through with a 6-65-1 receiving line.

Naysayers would say he thrived solely because of Meyers’ injury. And yes, that was a major factor. But Agholor was second in snaps amongst the Patriots’ wide receivers the week before. His career-high 71.9% catch rate reinforces his newfound reliability. If Agholor remains cheap in DFS, he could be a terrific add-on to an otherwise top-heavy lineup.

Hunter Henry

No need to overthink this. Hunter Henry remains one of the most painfully underutilized tight ends in DFS. Often incredibly affordable, he entered this season with one TD per 8.2 catches. For context, Travis Kelce average one per 11.3 catches.

The opposing Bills have been relatively tough against the run. Among Stevenson’s and Damien Harris’ eight combined touchdowns, seven have come from the 6-yard line or closer. Buffalo probably will expect more of the same on Thursday.

I’m betting Henry will get at least one look up close. He’s dropped only one pass in nearly two years with New England. He’s a good bet to score, providing exceptional DFS value in the process.