This article takes a look at the previous week of NFL action while breaking things down from a daily fantasy perspective. We will review winning lineups and provide main takeaways to consider for future weeks in DFS.
I believe this is a beneficial process for any DFS enthusiast. It is something I have been doing for years while trying to retune my approach and recognize any blind spots I missed in my previous week of research. Having said that, it’s important to identify the overarching themes that led to a winning lineup and how they can frame your mindset moving forward. In other words, I’ll be looking to separate the “signals” from the “noise” while recognizing some GPP strategy moves that did/didn’t pay off.
FanDuel Sunday Million Week 11 – 11/18
Here was the winning lineup from FanDuel’s Sunday Million contest:
QB Andrew Luck – IND (23.88)
RB Saquon Barkley – NYG (34.2)
RB Ezekiel Elliott – DAL (29.6)
WR T.Y. Hilton – IND (32)
WR Kenny Golladay – DET (21.3)
WR Tre’Quan Smith – NO (26.7)
TE Jordan Reed – WAS (16.6)
FLEX David Johnson – ARI (15.9)
DEF New Orleans (13)
I have been doing this NFL DFS Review column every week of the season, and this is probably the most sensible winning lineup we have come across in the FanDuel Sunday Million. By that I mean this lineup had numerous high owned pillars combined with reasonable low-owned diversifiers. In other words, this is the type of lineup we strive for every time we press submit.
Saquon Barkley, Ezekiel Elliott, Kenny Golladay, and David Johnson were all above a 24% ownership rate – but this entry struck the right combination while resisting temptation with other (less rewarding) popular options like Corey Davis, Christian McCaffrey, Amari Cooper, and Zach Ertz. This goes to show that you don’t have to be sneaky with every single selection in large-field tournaments.
The Andrew Luck and T.Y. Hilton combination certainly set this lineup over the top, particularly Hilton and his 32 fantasy points on a $6800 salary. Tre’Quan Smith (26.7 FP) and Jordan Reed (16.6) were also the right buttons to press at their respective positions and salary levels. It’s crazy to think that the winning lineup didn’t have Drew Brees and his 30.52 fantasy points, but Luck’s 23.88 FP was similar on a per dollar basis.
The second-best lineup was less than four points away from winning, which stings considering they rostered Dion Lewis and his 3.7 fantasy points.
Players with a much lower-than-anticipated ownership rate. These players surprisingly went under-utilized in tournaments:
Drew Brees - QB (12%): I thought Drew Brees would have a higher ownership rate than this while coming off a dazzling performance and playing for the highest projected scoring team of this slate in his home environment. The cost likely kept his ownership tame, as more people sided with the Carson Wentz (16.6%) from this game.
The highest owned players of the week. These players were some of the most popular fixtures in lineups:
David Johnson – RB – 37.4%
Ezekiel Elliott – RB – 29.1%
Saquon Barkley – RB – 28.9%
Michael Thomas – WR – 25.8%
Arizona Cardinals – DEF – 25.4%
Corey Davis – WR – 25.1%
Kenny Golladay – WR – 23.9%
Odell Beckham Jr – WR – 23.1%
Christian McCaffrey – RB – 22.8%
Zach Ertz – TE – 21.8%
Melvin Gordon – WR – 21.1%
Amari Cooper – WR – 20.9%
Alvin Kamara – RB – 20%
Dion Lewis – RB – 19.8%
The combination of bye weeks and high-powered offenses playing outside this slate lead to a higher concentration of ownership in these players. This is easily the longest list of players with 20%+ backings we’ve had this season.
Landmines of the week. These are players who had high ownership percentages, but ended up with subpar fantasy output:
Dion Lewis – RB: 3.7 FP @ 19.8%
Zach Ertz – TE: 2.5 FP @ 21.8%
Carson Wentz – QB: 3.84 FP @ 16.6%
Amari Cooper – WR: 5.1 FP @ 20.9%
Corey Davis – WR: 3.9 FP @ 25.1%
Yes, I was personally victimized by three of these five players. No, I don’t want to talk about it. I’m certainly not alone either … The Eagles were very underwhelming on Sunday, which disqualified many tournament lineups.
Best bargains of the week. These were the value plays who over-performed to boost DFS lineups.
Tre’Quan Smith – WR: 26.7 FP @ $4900
Kenny Golladay – WR: 21.3 FP @ $6400
D.J. Moore – WR: 25.2 FP @ $5300
Phillip Lindsay – RB: 24.6 FP @ $6400
T.Y. Hilton – WR: 32 FP @ $6800
Kenny Golladay was the only player with a respectable ownership rate of this group. Hilton checked in at 12%, Smith at 9%, then Moore and Lindsay at less than 5%.