FanDuel's Sunday Million Week 15 Recap

Taking an in-depth look at FanDuel's Week 15 Sunday Million Contest.

 

FanDuel offers some of the biggest payouts in all of daily fantasy sports. Among them is the $1.2 million FanDuel Sunday Million contest where a $7 entry has a shot at the $250,000 first-place payout. Each week FanDuel will be running a Sunday Million GPP Contest and we will break it down here at Footballguys.com and see what the keys were to having the top lineup on the week and taking home the top prize. 

Here is how Week 15 of the Sunday Million shook out:

 

DFS Screen Name Points Prize Money
1st fifthelement7373 228.74 $250,000
2nd chonkyjr 220.68 $125,000
3rd kgbken 219.78 $75,000
4th vonsofly 207.98 $50,000
5th massimo09 205.20 $30,000


The winning lineup by fifthelement7373 routed the field in FanDuel tournament terms with a comfortable eight-point victory. Including three players with 2% or less ownership in the contest, the lineup was hardly chalk, adding in Blake Bortles with 6% ownership at quarterback. The lineup by fifthelement7373 did not have a miss among the selections with 17 points by the Rams DST (nearly 4x value) as the lowest producer. Keelan Cole and Todd Gurley were the big hits of the bunch with more than 5x value return on each of their polar opposite salaries.  

Position Player Salary FanDuel Points Ownership
QB Blake Bortles $7,400 25.0 6%
RB LeVeon Bell $9,400 25.0 31%
RB Todd Gurley $8,400 43.5 13%
WR Marquise Goodwin $6,600 17.4 18%
WR Sterling Shepard $6,300 25.4 2%
WR Keelan Cole $4,500 28.1 1%
TE Rob Gronkowski $8,500 23.3 23%
K Robbie Gould $4,500 24.0 25%
DST Rams $4,400 17.0 1%
    $60,000 228.7  


WHAT WORKED?

*High ownership with high-value return*

Cam NewtonIn the pivotal NFC matchup, Newton played one of his best games of the season as a two-way quarterback. At 12% ownership, Newton approached 4x value with four touchdowns and 300 total yards in Carolina's win.

Nick Foles: With 12% ownership, Foles was a trendy pick at $6,000 salary. Foles returned 4x value with four touchdowns in the divisional road win against the Giants.

LeVeon BellThe injury to Antonio Brown aided Bell's already strong workload against the Patriots, but Bell approached 3x value on his top running back salary, which did not deter owners from rostering Bell on 31% of rosters. Bell totaled 165 yards with a touchdown, adding five receptions, another day at the office for the elite running back.

Todd Gurley: At 13% ownership, Gurley was a strong play this week, but not in the zone of LeVeon Bell at the running back position. However, the Rams back was an overt difference-maker for lineups with a rarified air score of 43.5 behind four touchdowns and 180 total yards for 5x value.

Mark Ingram: At 11% ownership, Ingram had the game script against the Jets and returned 3.5x value with 151 total yards and two touchdowns.

Kenyan Drake: While none of the top-10 lineups had Drake, 32% of the contest did and his $6,500 salary returned more than 3x value with 113 total yards, a touchdown, and six catches.

Marquise GoodwinThe speedster has stepped up with Pierre Garcon out for the 49ers and Jimmy Garoppolo's addition has further fueled Goodwin's production of late. Against Tennessee was no different as the 18% owned Goodwin nearly hit 3x value on 10-114-0 for WR2/3 level salary.

Rob GronkowskiEven without finding the end zone, Gronkowski nearly hit 3x value on his top salary with 23% ownership. Gronkowski fueled the ultimate game-winning Patriots drive with chunk receptions down the field and a critical two-point conversion.

Robbie Gould: The 49ers are a different team with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. Gould was a chalk pick of kickers with 25% ownership in the contest, hitting six field goals, including four from more than 40 yards out for more than 5x value.

Ravens DST: As a chalk pick to select the defense playing Cleveland, Baltimore came through with 4x value on their 14% ownership. The Ravens collected four turnovers, two sacks, and a defensive touchdown in their comfortable road win.

WHAT FAILED?

*High ownership with low-value return*

Antonio BrownInjury took Brown off the field in the early second quarter, but Brown was already off to a sluggish start. His 36% ownership returned 0.3x value with only a couple catches.

Devin Funchess: While Cam Newton, Greg Olsen, and even Damiere Byrd were hits this week, Funchess mired through a 1-19-0 stat line on 14% ownership.

Dede Westbrook has been a hot name of late, but the luck ran out in Week 15 as his 23% ownership returned 2-21-0 and Keelan Cole was the Jacksonville receiver to hit big against Houston.

Doug Baldwin: On 10% ownership, Baldwin was a bust with a single catch in Seattle's blowout loss against the Rams.

Adam ThielenThe Vikings blew out the Bengals, but Thielen was a minimal part of the team's success with his worst FanDuel outing of the season. At 25% ownership, Thielen tilted the standings, especially for the No.4 overall finisher with Thielen, who could have pushed for the top-3 if not for Thielen's flop.

Josh Gordon returned less than 1x value on 11% ownership as Deshone Kizer's up-and-down play continues to thwart Cleveland's offensive upside.

Jordy Nelson: With 14% ownership, Nelson was a miss along the Packers receivers with Aaron Rodgers' return. Nelson totaled 3-28-0 for less than 1x value.

Jimmy Graham: Along with teammate Doug Baldwin, Graham was a bust on his 10% ownership in Seattle's blowout home loss. Graham had a single catch (for negative yardage) with $6,700 salary.

Saints DST: Despite the home matchup against Bryce Petty, the Saints did not produce much on their 34% ownership with a single sack, two interceptions, and 19 points allowed.

Finish QB RB1 RB2 WR1 WR2 WR3 TE K DEF
1 Bortles Bell Gurley Goodwin Shepard Cole Gronkowski Gould LAR
2 Newton Bell Gurley Goodwin Cobb Cole Gronkowski Gould WAS
3 Newton Bell Gurley R.Matthews Cobb Cole Gronkowski Forbath BAL
4 Newton Gurley Ingram Thielen Goodwin Agholor Olsen Gould BAL
5 Rodgers Bell Gurley Goodwin Shepard Cobb Olsen Forbath MIN
6 Newton Gurley Ingram Adams Crowder Cobb Olsen Forbath BAL
7 Newton Gurley McCaffrey M.Thomas Landry Shepard Olsen Boswell MIN
8 Newton Bell Gurley M.Thomas Goodwin Byrd Olsen Forbath MIN
9 Newton Bell Gurley Cooks Shepard Agholor Olsen Gould SF
10 Bortles Bell Gurley Lee Cobb Cole Gronkowski Gould MIN

One of the more impressive lineups of the week was the No.10 overall finisher with Marqise Lee in their lineup (who ended up not playing) with 5.5% ownership in the contest overall. A top-5 finish was in play for this lineup if not for the zero score from Lee. The 5.5% ownership serves as a reminder to double-check all lineups and player status leading up to kickoff (or play it safe with trending players heading into Sunday) to optimize lineups and player selection.

MOST OWNED IN THE TOP-10 LINEUPS:

While most rostered options in the top-10 were moderate to highly-owned across the contest, here are some of the top performers with low-ownership in this week's tournament:

SHOOTING THE NEEDLE

Eli ManningReturning more than 4x value, Manning was owned by a mere 0.5% of the contest, churning out 434 yards and three touchdowns against the Eagles.

Jerick McKinnon: With 2% ownership, McKinnon came through with close to 3x value with 138 total yards and seven receptions. 

Keelan ColeThe Jaguars receiver had a career day, torching Houston for multiple long gains including a touchdown to the tune of 7-186-1 and close to historic 6x value with 1% ownership in the contest, including the top finisher.

Sterling Shepard: Back to the feature role, Shepard was busy early and often against the Eagles with 11-139-1 on 2% ownership, returning more than 4x value.

Damiere Byrd: In one of the more impressive stacks of the week, the No.8 overall finisher in the contest used Byrd as their WR3, along with Greg Olsen (8% ownership) and Cam Newton for the Carolina super-stack. Byrd was 0.9% owned and returned 3.5x value on his minimum salary with 3-25-2.

Ben Watson: Much maligned through the season, Watson resurfaced this week with 3x value on 2.5% ownership with 4-74-1.

Rams DST: On the road, the Rams throttled Seattle in a blowout. With 1% ownership, the Rams collected seven sacks of Russell Wilson and forced two turnovers and a safety for nearly 4x value.

Head over to FanDuel now and catch the action for Week 16.