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The Daily Dose – FanDuel


By Bryan Sweet, DFW Senior Writer and Co-Owner, @FantasyFreakDFW

Welcome to your DFS Daily Dose.  If you’re new to the scene, I suggest you read this post to get a general overview of what we’re going to be talking about in this article every week.  Once you’ve finished getting caught up, rejoin us as we look back at the week that was and also for some strategy for taking down both cash games and GPPs on FanDuel this week.

As the NFL’s second season begins, we can squeeze a couple more DFS weeks into our fantasy season, but be warned that short slates are tough to navigate.  With so few teams to choose from, the ownership percentages go way up and missing on even one guy can knock you out of cashing.  As a result, I’d advise going a little lighter this week and next because of the volatility.  Still, I’m going to try and give you the guys I’m targeting and see if we can make a little more money this season.  Here goes!

CASH GAMES

History suggests if we can hit 2X value overall on FanDuel, you will cash approximately 85% of the time.  With a $60,000 budget to build our team, that means our target should be 120 total points.  So, how can we maximize our chances of reaching that magic number?  Let’s take a look at some players who should eclipse that 2X value threshold and get us on our way.

Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks ($7,600, 19.7 projected points)
We had Wilson here last week as well, and that worked out OK (14.72 FD points), but we expect bigger things from Wilson this week.  First, news surfaced that the knee brace he’s been wearing will be removed for this game, perhaps an indication the team will look to Wilson to resuscitate it’s struggling run game.  Second, the Lions have been BAD against QBs the last few weeks, allowing more than 24 FD points to the position, on average.  The Seahawks will likely lean on Wilson to carry the offense and he should provide a nice return this week.

Le’Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers ($10,300, 22.9 projected points)
This may be the biggest no-brainer of the week as Bell is projected to score the most points of all players this week.  With that assumption, however, comes a high price tag but I think fading Bell will cost you more than playing him will.  His ownership percentage will likely exceed 60%, but if he performs as expected and you don’t have him, you’re behind 60% of the entrants already.  Also, if he struggles you’re in the same boat as 60% of the entrants, so you’re not really losing anything.  Don’t get cute here, play Bell and move on.

Odell Beckham Jr, WR, Green Bay Packers ($8,900, 17.9 projected points)
We have a few high-end options at WR, but I prefer Beckham over Antonio Brown and Jordy Nelson because I expect Pittsburgh to build a quick lead and lean on Bell to shorten the game and the Giants secondary has been playing well of late and I’m not sure Jordy has the upside of OBJ this week.  Beckham can score from anywhere on the field and is going to be a favorite target of Eli Manning with the struggles Green Bay has had on defense this season.  I do think Brown scores more points than Beckham, but Beckham delivers better value with the $200 savings.

Utilizing these players, and remembering our goals of 120 total points and players with consistently high floors, we could put together a lineup consisting of the following.

POSITION PLAYER/TEAM SALARY  PROJECTION
QB Russell Wilson/SEA $7,600 19.7
RB Le’Veon Bell/PIT $10,300 22.9
RB Zach Zenner/DET $6,200 13.8
WR Odell Beckham Jr/NYG $8,900 17.9
WR Doug Baldwin/SEA $6,900 13.5
WR Michael Crabtree/OAK $6,000 11.2
TE Will Tye/NYG $4,600 6.8
K Chris Boswell/PIT $4,600 9.2
DEF Houston Texans $4,800 11.8
TOTAL $60,000 126.8

With nearly 1/3 of our cap tied up in two players (Bell and Beckham), we’ve got to trim some costs at other positions.  Zenner seems to have taken over the lead RB duties for Detroit, so he should be able to provide a decent return based strictly on volume alone.  Baldwin and Crabtree are the #1 options on their respective teams, and stacking Wilson and Baldwin could provide a nice boost.  Crabtree is a little scary with the situation Oakland has at QB, but I think they’re going to have to throw to stay in this game, so Crabtree could see double-digit targets.  The TE options this week are lackluster at best, so paying down for Tye makes sense.  Pittsburgh is projected for the most points this week, so Boswell should see plenty of opportunities to put up points.  Houston against a third-string, rookie QB?  Sign me up.

GPPs

The draw for these big tournaments isn’t simply to make it above the money cut line, but to turn a small entry fee into a big win.  As such, the focus shifts to players with a higher upside than those in our cash games lineup, but also more risk to have a bad game.  Also, we want to go a little “off the grid” and find players that will be owned by a smaller percentage of entrants.  Let’s see if we can find a few players that could push us toward the top of the leaderboard in a GPP.

Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit Lions ($7,200, 15.7 projected points)
If the Lions want to have any chance of going into Seattle and coming away with a win, it will most likely be on the arm of Stafford.  Detroit’s running game is nearly nonexistent, and Seattle lost the captain of its secondary when Earl Thomas went down with a broken leg a few weeks ago.  Now, Seattle’s secondary is still very good, but they have been susceptible in recent weeks.  If Stafford can find a way to attack this defense with seam routes to guys like Eric Ebron or Golden Tate, the Lions could keep the game interesting.  If things go according to script, Detroit is going to be behind and throwing anyways, so Stafford could accumulate some garbage time stats as well.

Paul Perkins, RB, New York Giants ($5,900, 9.0 projected points)
Perkins seems to have revived the running game in New York as the Giants have begun to utilize him more and more as the season progressed.  Perkins have done more with his touches than Rashad Jennings, and most signs point to Perkins getting the starting nod in Green Bay this week.  Perkins is effective in the passing game as well, and should see his ownership percentage hovering around the 10% mark.  This is exactly the type of contrarian play we’re looking forward to take down a GPP.

Sterling Shepard, WR, New York Giants ($5,100, 9.9 projected points)
I’m doubling down on Giants players here, as I think New York can score against Green Bay’s defense and has the best shot of the four underdogs to pull off an upset this weekend.  Eli Manning has proven he can step up in the playoffs, and Green Bay can be beaten through the air.  Odell Beckham will be the focus of Green Bay’s attention in the passing game, and rightfully so, leaving Shepard in positive situations.  Shepard has found the end zone in six of his last nine games, so the TD upside is there as well.

Here is what one of my lineups will look like this week, including the players I listed above.

POSITION PLAYER/TEAM SALARY  PROJECTION
QB Matthew Stafford/DET $7,200 15.7
RB Paul Perkins/NYG $5,900 9.0
RB Le’Veon Bell/PIT $10,300 22.9
WR Sterling Shepard/NYG $5,100 9.9
WR Antonio Brown/PIT $9,100 18.8
WR Jordy Nelson/GB $8,500 16.1
TE Will Tye/NYG $4,600 6.8
K Chris Boswell/PIT $4,600 9.2
DEF Pittsburgh Steelers $4,700 10.1
TOTAL $60,000 118.5

That’s a lot of Steelers and Giants, huh?  We need to be contrarian without sacrificing upside to win a large-scale GPP, and I think we’ve done that here.  We’re getting our high-floor guys (Bell, Brown, Nelson) and some low-owned guys with upside (Perkins, Shepard), maximizing our salary.  We didn’t stack our QB with a pass-catching option, but we’d be sacrificing value in going up to Eric Ebron or down to Golden Tate.  I like the makeup of this lineup, but probably will limit my exposure because of the small slate.

Thanks for checking out the latest edition of the Daily Dose.  We’ll schedule another appointment for next Saturday and see how we did in wild card weekend.  Best of luck!