Cracking FanDuel: Week 10

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 my projections against FanDuel's prices:

Link to Week 10 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 10 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 the price and expected fantasy points (the higher the value the better).
  • ETP = A team's expected points via the Las Vegas spread and under/over totals. The higher the better.
  • Indicator = Ratio squared x H-Value. It attempts to prioritize the value plays.
  • In the 2017 Cracking FanDuel book, I demonstrated that selecting players who were in the upper half of Ratio, H-Value, and Expected Team Points at their positions led to the best fantasy success. I call these three factors the Criteria. The players that meet all three factors will have a yes in the Crit? column.
  • I have highlighted player's names (in green) that should be strong considerations for your lineups. Most of these players meet the criteria factors. These selections generally reflect the most bang for the buck at their respective positions. Players in yellow represent other selections that I rate slightly worse than the top plays at their position but should be considered for diversification purposes while building your lineups.

General Thoughts

Situations that stand out to me this week.

  • Try not to get caught up in just maximizing total points in the IVCs. One needs to understand that I project touchdowns in decimals. If a player who I projected at 0.4 TDs actually scores a touchdown, that bumps up his projection an extra 3.6 (6*.0.6) fantasy points. It's the reason we show three different sets of projections on our IVCs. This can help to smooth out particular biases.

  • Six teams have implied team totals of 25+ points. These are the teams that I prefer building my lineups around this week. They are LA Rams (28.75), Pittsburgh (27.50), Detroit (27.25), New England (26.25), Atlanta (26.00), and New Orleans (25.50). Of these six teams, only the Rams, Lions and Falcons are at home.

  • The wide receiver and tight end situations are bleak. I am not projecting any players to reach 2X value (I believe this is a first time this has ever happened). Your success this week will likely depend on hitting these positions correctly. My general approach when the pricing does not reflect value is to choose players with high implied team totals and lowish prices. This is a risk-averse strategy that has rewarded me over the years in DFS contests (especially on FanDuel).

  • The Indianapolis Colts don't have a defense. They began the year not being able to stop the pass. Lately, they can't stop the run either. Vontae Davis (a star in previous seasons) has been playing hurt this season and was finally released. He cleared waivers and is likely headed to season-long surgery. Simply put this translates like this: PLAY YOUR STEELERS. Virtually everyone is in play. My favorite play in cash games is RB Le'Veon Bell. He doesn't come cheap at $9,300 but is an anchor that can be trusted against this porous Colts run defense. The Colts are yielding 26.0 FP to running backs since week 3 and Bell is one of the few guys that are on the field for nearly all of the Steelers offensive snaps. In GPPs, I will likely be fading the top Pittsburgh names (Bell and Brown) because of ownership levels. Both will likely surpass 25+% ownership in the big GPPs.

  • Matt Ryan ($7,770), RB Devonta Freeman ($6,500), and Julio Jones ($8,000) are priced near their lows for the season. The Falcons have struggled offensively but draw a great situation (at home) against a Dallas team that will be without Ezekiel Elliott and with Dez Bryant being less than 100% (Dez had a limited practice on Friday only). This Atlanta team is too talented on paper to keep under-performing on offense. It's a situation I think could produce a lot of fantasy points.

  • The New York Jets at Tampa Bay Buccaneers game. Vegas hates this game with low implied team totals for both teams. This is one possible outcome of the game. But another possible outcome is a wild game filled with mistakes, forcing the other offense to throw in catchup mode. My game predictor calculations show extremely plus matchups in the passing game (top seven offenses over the last four weeks against bottom seven defenses over that same period). The Bucs will be going with backup Ryan Fitzpatrick who is prone to fumbles and interceptions but can sling it with the best of them. The Bucs will also be without WR Mike Evans who is serving a one-game suspension. Because of the possibility of needing to play catchup, TE Cameron Brate ($5,700) provides maximum upside as the Buccaneers best redzone target.

  • Read Steve Buzzard's ownership data (updated on Saturday). It is the best pulse on what people will be doing. Although his chart reflects GPP ownership, it's also the best roadmap of the most popular plays in cash games.

Cash+ Stacks I am targeting:

Underowned GPP players I am targeting for differentiation:

Sample Roster 1 ($60K) - PIT/ATL OVERLOAD, TB Stack - Projected Points = 124.2

Sample Roster 2 ($60K) Gurley Option - Projected Points = 124.5

Sample Roster 3 ($60K) If Powell BEASTS, All-IN on PIT - Projected Points = 120-126