Cracking FanDuel: Week 13

Footballguys has partnered with FanDuel and as part of that deal, I will be penning a weekly piece that tries to cover some of the finer points on beating their contests.

Footballguys has partnered with FanDuel and as part of that deal, I will be penning a weekly piece that tries to cover some of the finer points on beating their contests. This article will usually appear on Saturdays and not include the early Thursday games.

My approach to FanDuel's Daily Games

In salary cap games where other companies are determining prices, I like to see where their thoughts differ substantially from my projections. My value chart below matches up my projections against FanDuel's prices:

Link to Week 13 Value Chart

Some explanation of my Excel manipulation is in order:

  • Everything is sorted by position
  • I have converted my projections to FanDuel Fantasy Points. These figures appear in the FP column.
  • The Price column reflects FanDuel's Week 13 Price
  • The Ratio column reflects the expected points multiplier (per thousand of salary). The higher value the better.
  • H-Value represents our own proprietary formula that matches price and expected fantasy points (the higher the value the better).
  • ExpPts = A team's expected points via the Las Vegas spread and under/over totals. The higher the better.
  • In the 2016 Cracking FanDuel book, I demonstrated that selecting players who were in the upper half of Ratio, H-Value, and Expect Team Points at their positions led to the best fantasy success. I call these three factors the Criteria.
  • I have highlighted player's names (in green) that should be strong considerations for your lineups. Most meet the Criteria and have the best average criteria score. They generally reflect the most bang for the buck at their respective positions. Players in yellow are additional players that I like this week.

General Thoughts

Situations that stand out to me this week.

  • Fanduel's pricing might be the softest I have seen all season. This means everyone is rostering a lot of studs and it will likely take a score of 130+ to win in cash games.
     
  • Vegas is implying team totals of 25 or more points for a whopping ten teams this week. Make sure you stock your rosters with these teams: Saints, Patriots, Steelers, Falcons, Raiders, Rodgers, Seahawks, Cardinals, Chargers, and Colts.
     
  • Despite the massive price increase this week, RB David Johnson ($9,200) remains a MUST-play in cash games. He has been on a tear scoring 5 TDs the last 3 weeks and draws a plus-matchup against the Redskins this week. Even teams that attempt to stop him on the ground find he is equally impressive as a receiver out of the backfield. He has logged 29 targets the past 3 weeks turning those passes into 20 completions for 206 yards and 3 TDs. Rostering David Johnson is equivalent of getting a running back and a wide receiver on your roster. Until his price reaches $11K or higher, I will be roster David Johnson without much thought to his opponent.
     
  • The New England Patriots are favored by 13.5 points against the Los Angeles Rams. Every other point spread is offered at 7 points or less.  In expected blowouts at home like this game is projected to be, rostering the defense, kicker, and/or RB all make sound sense. The defense benefits by forcing the opponent (the Rams in this instance) to pass nearly every down in an effort to catch up. Lots of pass plays from the rookie Jared Goff will likely lead to increased sacks, interceptions and fumble recoveries. The Patriots are my top defense this week because of that. Stephen Gostkowski and LeGarrette Blount should also get a lot of opportunities once the game is out of hand.  If you have the cap to afford them, the chalk defense is the Denver Broncos.  They rank 1st in my pressure formula (defense vs offense over the last 4 weeks).  They will be teeing off against a Jacksonville offense without WR Allen Hurns, TE Julius Thomas, and RB Chris Ivory.  
     
  • How bad is Matt Barkley? He is playing at home against the one-win San Francisco 49ers and Vegas expects his Bears to lose. There is really nothing to be gained via DFS with this statement, except to point out that Barkley could be $1,000 and I still would not roster him.  He is that bad.
     
  • At Tight End I am only considering three players. TE Martellus Bennett ($5,100) would cost over $8,000 if his ankles were even close to 100%.  Because he plays for the Patriots, we have no idea what his true status is. He has been a dud the last few weeks, but I am still intrigued because of the super low price and possible volume in a Gronowski-less offense. He has 2 TD potential. The other TE I love this week is Jimmy Graham, SEA. I expect Russell Wilson to break-out this week after a horrible showing last week. For some variety, I will also have some shares of Travis Kelce, KC.
     
  • Because of the pricing and so many favorable stacks, I suggest people play using my CASH+ strategy. This entails matching a QB with a WR/TE, and playing this lineup in 2X, 3X, 5X, 100 man (top 12 pay), and small dollar GPP contests. Not all of the lineups will succeed, but this strategy can yield some great scores that can pay off big.
     
  • My favorite starting stacks: Wilson/Graham, Wilson/Baldwin, Rodgers/Nelson, Brees/Cook, Brees/Snead, Brees/Thomas, Stafford/Tate, Brady/Bennett, Brady/Edelman, Kaepernick/McDonald

Let's jump to some samples for the Sunday Main Slate.

Sample Roster #1 (Wilson to Graham) - Projected Points = 137.1

Sample Roster #2 (Rodgers to Nelson) - Projected Points = 135.4

Sample Roster #3 (Brees to Cooks) - Projected Points = 134.7