As it does every year, Week 1 features a heavy list of teams about to shift perceptions of the football-watching community. This plays perfectly into the hands of daily fantasy football players, since salaries will need to catch up with the players’ actual outputs. Now is the perfect time to buy-in – before the pop.

Sporfolio’s NFL Daily Fantasy Sports game-by-game analysis columns are driven by expected game flow. Based on a combination of our Week 1 NFL picks against the spread and our expectations for a given game, we project the actions necessary to make these picks come to fruition. We aim to pinpoint players integral to our predicted game flow for each game of the week.

Luke May is our resident NFL DFS expert, and Mario Mergola operates Sporfolio as our expert for NFL Picks Against the Spread.

Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans

Luke’s DFS Take: While something as horrible as Hurricane Harvey never brings anything good, motivation is a very real aspect of sports. I can’t imagine a team that is going to come out Week 1 with more passion than the Texans who get to play in front of their home crowd just shortly after that tragedy. Houston’s defense is a near must-play for me, led by a now-healthy JJ Watt, this unit should be able to feast on Bortles. While I do see the Texans winning this game, it is hard for me to be excited about Tom Savage starting at quarterback. He likely limits the upside of poor DeAndre Hopkins, and Savage is likely on a short leash with Deshaun Watson waiting behind him. For now, I feel pretty comfortable passing on the Texans game and rolling out Lamar Miller. Miller may face more competition as the season progresses, but for now he figures to see plenty of carries and playing in this immensely meaningful game to Houston, I will not be surprised if produces a big game.  

Mario’s DFS Take: It’s so easy to look at the Texans and Jaguars and find nothing besides defense to consider, but the reality is that both defenses are actually excellent. That’s right, something about the Jaguars is “excellent.” And, Jacksonville has the fortune of playing against arguably the worst starting quarterback in the league – for now; he won’t be there long. Head coach Bill O’Brien is also allergic to offense – remember that time Houston failed to reach 28 points for an entire season? That was fun – and little should change in 2017. It’s easy, but it’s true. Chose between both defenses.

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