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College Football DFS: New Year’s Eve Bowl Games Projections & CFB Picks | Friday, 12/31/2021

Matt Gajewski



Friday’s New Year’s Eve college football bowl game schedule features four games on DraftKings and FanDuel, including the College Football Playoff Semifinals of Georgia vs. Michigan and Cincinnati vs. Alabama. This college football bowl game projection article will provide a DFS breakdown and look at each team and provide information about each skill position player of note. Make sure to check out Awesemo’s projections, depth charts and datasheets for more information. With that said, let’s dive into this week’s iteration of the CFB DFS picks for today’s bowl game matchups.

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CFB DFS Picks: College Football Bowl Picks & Predictions


Sam Hartman ($8,500) – Taking on a last second replacement, Wake Forest will not face Rutgers as 15-point favorites in a game with a 62-point total. Overall, this gives Wake Forest the highest implied team total on the board. Wake Forest also plays extremely and pass heavy. They run 81.6 plays per game on pass 49.2% of the time. This offensive philosophy drives Sam Hartman‘s elite production. Hartman has excellent mobility with 343 cumulative rushing yards on the year. He also averages 302.1 passing yards on 36.1 attempts per game. The Rutgers defense allows an absurdly bad 8.7 yards per pass attempt, setting up Hartman as the best price-adjusted quarterback play on the board.

Jayden de Laura ($7,100) – Another game featuring replacement teams, both Washington State and Central Michigan lost their original opponents. Now facing each other, Washington State is a 7.5-point favorite in a game with a 58-point total. Washington State is slightly below average in terms of pace, but they throw the ball 53.8% of the time. At quarterback, Jayden de Laura has solid mobility with 100 cumulative rushing yards this year. As a passer, he averages 249.3 yards per game on 31.2 attempts. Fortunately, he draws a pace up spot against a Central Michigan team that runs 76.1 plays per game. More importantly, Central Michigan plays horrific defense, allowing 8.4 yards per pass attempt. With the Washington State team total also sitting north of 30 points, de Laura is an excellent mid-priced option here.

Bryce Young ($9,000) – Heisman winner Bryce Young finds himself in an interesting College Football Playoff matchup against a strong Cincinnati pass defense. Overall, Alabama remains a 13-point favorite over the Bearcats in a game with a 57.5-point total. While Cincinnati only allows 5.7 yards per pass attempt, Alabama still has a 35.25-point implied team total. On the year, Alabama runs 77.3 plays per game and throws the ball 52.8% of the time. Young averages 331.5 passing yards per game on 35.7 attempts, with modest dual threat ability. Young is expensive here and some may shy away from the perceived difficult matchup. However, Cincinnati’s “elite” pass defense plays in the AAC. With Cincinnati’s defense getting little respect from bookmakers, taking Young at potential low ownership could make some sense here.

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Noah Vedral ($5,000) – For those looking to get off the board in large field tournaments, Rutgers quarterback Noah Vedral could be your guy. Vedral battled injury down the stretch in the 2021 season, but he has now had extended time to heal ahead of this bowl game. Already named the starter, Vedral has solid mobility behind his 267 cumulative rushing yards this year. He leaves much to be desired as a passer, but Wake Forest allows 7.4 yards per pass attempt and 5.0 yards per rush attempt. Playing poor defense across the board, Vedral remains a contrarian option in the best game environment on the entire slate. He is also cheap enough to jam multiple studs at other spots in lineups.

Running Back

Nakia Watson ($3,500) – Typically functioning as Washington State’s third string back, Wisconsin transfer Nakia Watson benefits from a thin depth chart. Max Borghi opted out of this game and Deon McIntosh did not make the trip. Watson is the only other back who has handled a carry this year. Together, Borghi and McIntosh vacate 272 carries and 37 targets. While Central Michigan is slightly tougher on the ground, Watson’s volume at his price is simply too much to pass up here.

Brian Robinson ($6,800) – For those scared of the Cincinnati pass defense, but still looking to target Alabama’s elite team total Brian Robinson makes sense. This at the position, Alabama already lost Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams to injury this year. With only Trey Sanders behind him, Brian Robinson should receive as many touches as he can handle. On the year, that average comes to 21.4 touches per game. This includes 34 targets in the pass game, where he ranks fourth on the team. Cincinnati is weaker in run defense, but still allowing just 3.4 yards per carry. Again, AAC competition is much different than Alabama. As a near two-touchdown favorite, Robinson is simply too cheap for his projected workload.

Lew Nichols ($9,500) – The premier feature back in the country, many may not know the name Lew Nichols. However, Nichols notched 1,707 rushing yards on 311 carries this year, while adding 282 receiving yards on 44 targets. This averaged out to 29.6 touches per game. Impressively, Nichols has received at least 34 touches in three straight games, while eclipsing 45 touches twice in that span. Central Michigan remains an underdog here, but Washington State struggles to defend the run, allowing 4.7 yards per attempt. Even if this game plays to the spread, Nichols is involved enough as a pass catcher to render his game script independent. With so much value across the board, prioritizing Nichols is not an issue here.

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Blake Corum ($4,400) – For those looking at punt running backs outside of Watson, Blake Corum enters this game undervalued coming off a late season injury. On the year, Corum averages 85.4 rushing and 13 receiving yards on 15.3 touches per game as an explosive complement to Hassan Haskins. Georgia plays elite run defense, allowing just 2.7 yards per carry, but Michigan has success against strong run defenses already this year. Haskins also runs the risk of simply playing behind Haskins after his strong closing to the season. Either way, Corum presents a risk. However, his explosive play making ability makes him an interesting cheaper tournament option here.


Donald Stewart ($3,500) – Already mentioned above, Wake Forest is the top offense to target here. Improving matters further, Jaquarii Roberson opted out, potentially narrowing the target distribution. Originally a part time receiver, Donald Stewart should now work his way into an every down role. Even with Roberson available, Stewart averaged 5.3 targets per game in Wake Forest’s final four contests. Just $500 above the minimum price, Stewart’s raw target volume and price remain too much to pass up here.

Jameson Williams ($8,800) – The Alabama passing attack will be walking into somewhat uncharted waters after losing John Metchie to a torn ACL in the SEC championship. However, the Crimson Tide retain Jameson Williams after he notched 1,434 receiving yards on 102 targets this year. Williams only averaged 7.8 targets per game, but Metchie vacates 128 targets and 1,142 receiving yards himself. The Williams/Young stack looks expensive and works against Alabama’s best matchup in the run game. However, this stack has proven to be matchup proof already this year, evidenced by Alabama’s dismantling of Georgia.

De’Zhaun Stribling ($4,100) – Perhaps the top price-adjusted pairing option with de Laura, De’Zhaun Stribling enters this slate with a shockingly affordable price tag. Stribling only averages 38.1 receiving yards per game for Washington State, but he has surprisingly consistent target volume. Stribling averaged 5.8 targets per game on the year and 6.0 targets per game over Washington State’s last four games. Stribling, who is $2K cheaper than the top receivers here, presents another path to multiple studs in DFS lineups.

AT Perry ($6,600) – Another potential beneficiary of the Roberson new is AT Perry. On the year, Perry actually recorded 1,169 receiving yards to Roberson’s 1,078. The two had exactly 112 targets, equating to a 25% target share. Perry averaged an absurd 11.8 targets down the stretch for Wake Forest and he could see even more volume here. Somehow priced below $7K, Perry is another screaming value coming out of this Wake Forest offense.

Calvin Jackson ($6,100) – For those looking as more expensive de Laura stacks, Calvin Jackson led the team with 946 receiving yards. Interestingly, Travell Harris out-targeted Jackson 97-93 on the year, but only recorded 798 receiving yards himself. Jackson enters the slate with the cheaper price tag between the two and deserves strong consideration here.

Check out Awesemo college football betting experts Ben Rasa and Matt Gajewski breaking down
the entire 2021 College Football Bowl Game Schedule and giving their predictions, best betting picks and parlays.

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Looking for more CFB DFS picks for DraftKings and DFS college football DraftKings picks? Check out our industry-leading college football DFS projections for this week. Alex Baker, the No. 1 DFS player in the world, developed and maintains the FanDuel college football DFS ownership projections for this week.

Matt Gajewski graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Economics. Matt has worked in the fantasy industry for the past four years, focusing on DFS and Sports Betting. Matt specializes in NFL, College Football, College Basketball, XFL, and MMA. With GPP victories across the major sports, Matt also qualified for the DraftKings 2020 Sports Betting Championship and won a seat to the College Basketball Tourney Mania final.

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