DFS Shark Tank Week 2: Player/Stack/Avoid Pitch for the $1M+ Open Tournaments
I (RC) am going to play one DFS lineup in a $1M (min.) contest each week to try and take a dart throw at the big money to fund three things: (1) Myself, (2) FFM, (3) my favorite charity.
The odds of hitting on one entry in a giant pool is near impossible…but that’s the fun of it, the lottery dream of it.
My plan to make a lineup is going to be the ‘fun’ here. I, myself, do not functionally play DFS myself…I get submerged in Fantasy and scouting and questions and shows and writing, etc., all day every day. I’m not an expert in the salary and stack aspects, etc., so I’m going to do the smart thing -- lean on two people who are more expert in it than I.
There will be five inputs to make my FF lineup for the million (or bust)…
1) FFM’s Ross Jacobs, who is taking a deeper dive into the world of DFS this year.
2) Andrew Duhan…known to us as ‘Andrew DFS’…one of the most expert DFS sources that I know.
3) My wife, who knows nothing about football, is going to make one random pick at a position (probably like DST…or from a group of top options of the other positions.
4) I will pick one favorite play/player.
5) I will let Advanced Sports Logic’s ‘DFS Optimizer’, which uses FFM projections correlated to the salary and instantly/AI’s the best spends to fill out as many positions (or all positions) as needed. More info on the program and subscribing to the DFS Optimizer on the ‘Optimizer’ tab on the FFM homepage.
But I will begin each week by consulting with my two experts, who I’ve asked to pitch four concepts…
1) Their best ‘stack’ play, and why.
2) Their best mid-range salary player I should have in my lineup.
3) Their best cheapo play I should have in my lineup construction.
4) The bigger name/salary player I should avoid -- for either game logic or DFS ‘ownership %’ logic (and we’ll explain what that means).
The two DFS experts are going to pitch me (a la a Shark Tank type pitch) their concepts Saturday night on a group chat, which will be posted in full below -- so you can see their picks/plays and logic to consider for your own lineup constructions in DFS. I don’t know who they are gonna pitch until they pitch it…and I’ll react to it, and we’ll group discuss it. They also don’t know who the other might pitch -- they may end up with the same exact concept/player…they won’t know until the chat starts.
We haven’t practiced this ahead, I just laid out the generic concept and we’re about to see where it goes. Forgive any typos…and good luck with your DFS plays this week!
RC: OK, this week let’s start out with Ross leading off with his stack of the week that I should consider?
ROSS: The obvious play is my pick from last week, Carr + Adams but I’m liking Goff + Amon Ra and maybe Hockenson if you like the double stack. You can also bring it back with Curtis Samuel or Terry McLaurin
ANDREW DFS: That's a great play, and I love the idea of incorporating a bring back piece with that matchup. The WAS @ DET matchup has the second highest O/U at 48.5. Given the way Curtis Samuel was utilized last week, I'd lean towards selecting him over Terry.
RC: Do I want to trust Wentz can hit two weeks in a row? If I can get over that...I can get in on some of that sweet Curtis Samuel.
RC: No D.J. Chark?
RC: The big play shots with Goff last week were towards DJC.
ANDREW DFS: How do we feel about D’Andre Swift?
RC: The practice report stuff looks suspicious
ROSS: Wentz doesn’t have to hit massively to support one guy. And you could include Chark if you wanted. He’s definitely in play. I just like Amon Ra’s connection better right now especially if the offensive line is banged up and Goff has to throw quickly
RC: Yeah, the O-Line injury report doesn’t look good for Detroit
ROSS: I’m worried Swift won’t play or will be limited. Also they don’t project to play from behind and Washington’s run defense isn’t as bad as Philly’s. I’m avoiding swift this week.
RC: Andrew what stack are you proposing as top dog this week?
ANDREW DFS: My stack of the week is the obvious choice of LV QB Derek Carr and LV WR Davante Adams in addition to the bring back play of AZ WR Greg Dortch. The Cardinals and Raiders matchup has the highest O/U sitting at 51.5 as of right now. I’m banking on Carr taking advantage of a terrible AZ secondary which has no chance of covering Adams.
The Chiefs were only able to put up 2 passing touchdowns on the Chargers on Thursday night which makes Carr’s stat line against LAC in Week 1 more impressive. I trust that Dortch will still be heavily involved in AZ offense since WR Rondale Moore will be out again this week. The drawback of this stack is that Adams and Carr are projected to be the highest owned QB and WR. Ownership percentages of both will be well over 15%.
RC: Is the Dortch price still nothing, essentially?
ANDREW DFS: He's priced at D$3,500, which is basically nothing. No major price adjustment for his impressive week 1 performance.
ROSS: Dortch is very cheap, but everyone knows about him now. He’ll be one of the highest played cash game players and tournament plays since so many people go for value instead of upside in tourneys
RC: Any interest in a Lance-Aiyuk-Deebo stack with the hopes Deebo is essentially the main RB?
ANDREW DFS: Yes, he's also on the chalkier side this week. His projected ownership percentage is between 10 - 15%.
ANDREW DFS: That stack is my honorable mention. I like the value in that stack as all three players have relatively low ownership percentages. The forecasted weather for Sunday is concerning. If the conditions improve, I may switch my QB stack to this game.
ROSS: Lance has some hopes, but he looks like a better cash game play to me. You really need to hit 300 passing yards to win tourneys and that looks like a reach for Lance. If you play him, I’d only stack one of Deebo and Aiyuk. I just don’t see him supporting two in a low projected game they should be winning big
RC: If he goes for 100+ rushing...no good?
ANDREW DFS: The O/U for that game is currently 40.5.
ROSS: 100+ rushing is certainly nice but again it’s better for cash games. He’s cheap though and definitely worth a shot especially if you’re entering multiple lineups
ANDREW DFS: Lance is priced at D$5,700. He needs about 23 points to have a good ROI in GPP leagues. How he gets there isn't my concern, will he get there under the current weather conditions is what I'm worried about.
RC: Ross who is your mid-range must play of the week?
ROSS: DJ Moore. Carolina was aggressively attacking down field last week, the giants look like a weak group of corners being hidden because TEN couldn’t take advantage (and Aaron Robinson is banged up), and Moore has high upside for his price.
RC: Robinson is def. out/on IR
RC: Did you see any connection with Baker + DJM? In the preseason, briefly, it didn't look like it...and then Week 1 was weak.
ROSS: He was trying to get it to Moore last week. Just had several batted balls and Ward is a really good corner. NYG has nobody like that
ANDREW DFS: Is he a better play than Robbie Anderson?
RC: Ward on Robbie?
RC: I'm back a week ago
RC: My bad
RC: Who draws Flott is the question?
ROSS: A few times and wiped him out. Robbie’s only catch was the busted coverage. He’s fine but Moore is still the man there
RC: Adoree on DJM. Flott on Anderson?
ANDREW DFS: It's hard for me to trust Baker's WRs.
RC: Adoree's cover numbers were nice last year, and he started out well with TEN this past week. Statistically, he's getting to be one of the better cover corners.
RC: I think they project Adoree on Robbie
ROSS: It doesn’t really matter who is on who. You have to get upside to win a tournament. If you don’t get a monster week it doesn’t matter either way. I just think Moore is a really sneaky play that not many people will be on
RC: Andrew, who is your mid-range must play?
ANDREW DFS: My mid-range play is WAS WR Curtis Samuel (5-10% projected ownership). His utilization last week was impressive (11 targets; 4 carriers) and his salary was not adjusted for his spectacular performance. I’m surprised that this play isn’t more popular amongst the public.
RC: The public, in DFS and regular FF, doesn't trust Samuel...but in reality, his last half of 2020 was WR1 level...then 2021 lost to injury...then 2022 Week 1 he's a WR1 again in output. I love Samuel!! Always have.
ANDREW DFS: His salary last week was D$4,200 and this week it goes up a measly D$400 to D$4,600. Show some respect DraftKings!
ANDREW DFS: Happy to take advantage of this play while his salary remains low.
RC: He's in my FanDuel lineup for sure. I didn't realize how low he was...I thought he'd be up much higher.
RC: Ross, who is the extreme value player to go for the gold with this week?
ROSS: Zay jones. He’s only $4300 this week, gets a not great Indy secondary, showed a good connection with Lawrence last week, and projects to play from behind in a game that could be higher scoring than anyone expects.
RC: I gotta work with a WR who has little shot at a TD pass from his QB?
RC: Don't make me play with anything connected to Trevor.
ANDREW DFS: Low projected ownership of <5%. Might be a sneaky play considering all of Indy's injuries.
RC: Kirk and Zay put up nice numbers/targets Wk1
ANDREW DFS: I'd be more concerned if the Jaguars were play a more respectable team. I think both WRs can maintain similar production this week.
ROSS: I like both of them, but Zay is the cheaper option. He’s got 20-point potential which is all you need at his price
RC: Andrew, who is your big bargain of the week?
ANDREW DFS: CIN TE Hayden Hurst would be my pick. He has a low salary of D$3,600 and projected ownership ~5%. Hurst had 8 targets last week behind Mixon (9) and Chase (16). I’ll like this play even more if Tee Higgins doesn’t suit up on Sunday.
RC: For sure Hurst looked like he had a little something last week with Burrow, in their debut together.
ANDREW DFS: Agreed, he looked promising in his debut with the Bengals.
ROSS: I like Hurst, but my concern is those 8 targets came in a game where Cincy trailed and passed 42 times trying to catch up. They won’t be down this week
RC: Can I interest anyone in bargain bin Ashton Dulin with or without Pittman out (but Pierce def. out)?
ROSS: If Pittman is out, I might play him a little. Looks like more of a cash game play to me though. Just don’t know how high he can score
RC: Man, when Dulin got in the game, once Pierce was hurt...Ryan was right at him. And he'll go against JAX secondary.
RC: Andrew, I suspect he's not highly owned? Maybe by all The Podfather's audience?
RC: Ross, I thought for sure you were gonna drop the Jordan Mason bomb.
ANDREW DFS: If he can score 12 points, that's a great ROI considering his salary of D$3,200. His projected ownership is 4.3% at the moment.
ROSS: 12 points is nice, but you need 20+ to win a tournament. Can he get you that?
RC: I am considering a Mason-Warren RB combo for a swing at the fences.
RC: …that things fall in their lap this week.
ANDREW DFS: You need to return 4x - 5x on your salaries. You don't necessarily need 20 from each position in my opinion.
RC: That Najee is one play in...and out.
ROSS: There’s no need to go with both of them. You need lots of points and you’ll have too much remaining cash with both plus you need them both to hit. Just play one if you want to gamble
RC: Ross, who is the mainstream/chalk play to avoid?
ROSS: Darrell Henderson. Yes, he is a massive value. Yes, he could easily score 20+ points. But he’s so freaking obvious that he’s going to be 30% owned. You get no advantage over the field when everyone is playing him.
RC: I started my first lineup test with that guy, I'm glad I moved off.
ANDREW DFS: He's definitely going to be a chalky play this week. Are you concerned at all about the ATL D? They played the run well last week outside of one Taysom Hill explosion.
ROSS: No but I won’t have Henderson anyways. Play him in cash, you basically have to. Avoid in tournaments simply because he’s far too chalky
RC: 13 runs for 61 (4.7 ypc) for AK and Ingram...but AK out late, ATL had all the ball control and a big lead early and then Saints all-pass comeback 4th. Just not a lot of traditional rushing. I would not be afraid of their Run D yet.
ANDREW DFS: On a similar note, are you avoiding the CIN defense since they will have a high ownership percentage?
RC: I wasn’t until you said so. Apparently, I'm a sucker. I had DHendo and CINN in my first test lineup run.
ANDREW DFS: I think that D is too cheap not to play. DraftKings did not reflect the post-Dak injury
RC: FanDuel has in bottom 10/$3.9
ANDREW DFS: You need to have unique plays to win a GPP tournament, but you also don't want to give up obvious points.
ROSS: It doesn’t help you if everyone else is on them and besides we’re crap at predicting the best defense each week. Just take another cheap option that’s lesser owned
RC: Andrew. who is your mainstream/chalk to avoid...and I'll just assume they're in my pre-chat/test lineup...
ANDREW DFS: TB RB Leonard Fournette would be my player to avoid (projected ownership > 20%; salary = D$6,700). I don’t think the Saints D is as bad as it looked against Atlanta during the first three quarters of the game last week. Tampa is missing a ton of key offensive linemen and NO has always found a way to give this team fits. Playing in New Orleans is difficult as it is, the crowd will be even more energized in their home opener.
RC: And Fournette may not be 100%
ANDREW DFS: If he's ruled out, I'm rushing RB Rachaad White into my lineups.
RC: The mainstream player I avoided right away...Kyler Murray, the highest salary QB on FD...no respect for a suddenly tough Raiders defense. Is anyone buying into him on a large scale this week?
ROSS: Not really. He’s moderately owned I think but many are nervous
ANDREW DFS: Count me out of that play. He has a high salary but low ownership percentage for good reason.
RC: How is Burrow's ownership? I'm looking at him possibly with Ja'Marr.
ANDREW DFS: He's sitting at 5.7%, I like that stack this week too. My only concern would be that if Cincy jumps out to a big lead in the first half then plays conservatively in the second half.
ROSS: I don’t really like Burrow for that reason
RC: OK, to wrap it up from all your suggestions. I am taking a Carr-Adams stack. I am going with Curtis Samuel. And I have to sleep on Zay v. Hurst cheapo play...and I'm taking out DHendo and CINN DST.
RC: One last item in my current lineup...Juwan Johnson at TE? Yea or Nea?
ROSS: He’s as good a stab as any but I think other people have figured it out so he’s not as sneaky as you think
ANDREW DFS: If you think he can score more than 10 points, I'd support that play. He had three catches last week and one end zone look.
RC: I want to get Taysom in the lineup but he's so expensive.
ANDREW DFS: Ross is on the money with the projected ownership, his percentage is more than 10%.
ANDREW DFS: The public is catching on to Juwan Johnson. Taysom's weekly usage is way too inconsistent.
RC: I think for this one crucial game with AK banged up...
RC: I might have a TE who rushes for 70+ and throws a couple times for a one TD.
RC: While rushing for a score.
RC: is the dream
ROSS: I kind of like Taysom as a contrarian play. Couple of rushing TDs and you’re golden plus nobody trusts him
ANDREW DFS: He's listed as a QB (not TE) on DraftKings.
RC: I am doing the FD $2.5M, $5 deal
RC: He's TE there...and expensive
RC: 3rd highest TE, but we got Kelce played and 4 teams MNF
ANDREW DFS: That's very interesting. His price is very low on DraftKings.
ANDREW DFS: D$4,400 with a <1% ownership projection.
ROSS: He’s lower on DK because he’s a QB not a TE. He has little to no value as a QB
RC: DK he's a $6.2 TE as well as QB
ANDREW DFS: Seems way too pricey for me.
RC: Not when he rushes for 150 yards and a TD, plus 3 catches, plus 3 passes for 100 yards and a TD!!!
ANDREW DFS: If he has those stats, he's valuable at any position. Unless Jameis goes down during the game, I wouldn't count on that.
RC: A boy can dream
RC: Adam Trautman will probably go 6-115-2
ROSS: Value doesn’t matter in GPPs that much. You need upside and Taysom has as much upside as anyone as a TE plus he’s low played. That’s how you win big
RC: OK, gentlemen...that's a wrap. Good luck winning some $$$$ this week and thank you for your guidance for Week 2!
ANDREW DFS: Good luck!
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