DFS Wide Receiver Strategy: FanDuel 2015 Year in Review

DFS Wide Receiver Strategy: FanDuel 2015 Year in Review

By Chris Raybon (Senior Daily Fantasy Expert), last updated Sep 2, 2016

Chris Raybon's picture

Chris Raybon is the Senior Daily Fantasy Editor at 4for4 Fantasy Football.

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisRaybon.

FanDuel has no flex position, so you have to choose more WRs than any other position in your lineup. As you'll soon see, you should be willing to spend liberally on the position.

I compiled data on the performance of WRs on FanDuel relative to their salary in 2015 to see what we can learn and apply going forward.

I broke salaries down into $500 increments and looked at points scored per $1,000 of salary, percentage of time reaching cash game value, and percentage of time reaching tournament value. I also took a look at how each individual WR performed.

I analyzed 828 WR games from 2015 (every game where a WR had a salary and was projected for 8.0 FanDuel points or more by 4for4). The WR data will be compared across salary ranges and across positions.  

The data will be laid out below and followed up with some key takeaways, and then I'll sum up the actionable takeaways at the end of the article.

Note: The sample sizes for each salary tier can be found in the appendix at the end of the article.

 

Salary vs. Performance

Average FanDuel Value Per Game Returned by Salary Range & Position, 2015
Salary QB RB WR TE  D/ST
$9,000+ 2.37 1.59 1.94      
$8,500-$8,900 2.24 1.82 1.87 1.21    
$8,000-$8,400 2.25 1.51 1.72 1.86    
$7,500-$7,900 2.46 1.69 1.82 0.55    
$7,000-$7,400 2.67 1.79 1.61 0.55    
$6,500-$6,900 2.48 1.69 1.65 1.42    
$6,000-$6,400 2.31 1.78 1.62 1.80    
$5,500-$5,900 2.00 1.59 1.67 1.57    
$5,000-$5,400 2.27 1.64 1.65 1.50 1.77 1.84
$4,500-$4,900 2.59 1.90 2.16 1.44 1.71 1.71
$4,000-$4.400           1.55
  • QBs tend to score more points per dollar than other positions, so the real comparison here is between WRs and RBs. At the higher salary tiers, WRs are much more plentiful than RBs -- there were 219 instances of a WR priced at $7,500 or above, compared to just 131 RBs. WRs provided a greater ROI than RBs at every single salary tier from $7,500 and above. 
  • WRs provided less of an ROI than RBs in the $6,000-$7,400 range. WRs in this tier are generally inconsistent No. 2 WRs, while RBs in this tier can often be backups stepping in for injured or benched starters.

 

Cash Game Value

Scores needed to finish in the money will vary by week, but generally, if your lineup scores two points per $1,000, you'll reach 120 points, which is usually sufficient to place in a 50/50 league or win just over half of your head-to-heads.

Percentage of Time Reaching 2x Value on FanDuel by Salary & Position, 2015
Salary QB 2x % RB 2x % WR 2x % TE 2x % K 2x % D/ST 2x %
$9,000+ 61% 29% 47%      
$8,500-$8,900 59% 41% 38% 0%    
$8,000-$8,400 65% 22% 28%      
$7,500-$7,900 66% 33% 38% 46%    
$7,000-$7,400 71% 39% 34% 0%    
$6,500-$6,900 67% 29% 29% 29%    
$6,000-$6,400 58% 35% 35% 33%    
$5,500-$5,900 50% 28% 35% 29%    
$5,000-$5,400 57% 33% 34% 28% 41% 35%
$4,500-$4,900 50% 50% 48% 29% 34% 36%
$4,000-$4.400   33% 35%     32%
  • Again we see that WRs are generally better cash game plays than RBs at salaries above $7,500, although RBs did have a slight edge in the $8,500-$8,900 tier.
  • There were 34 WRs who were priced at $9,000 or more in 2015, compared to just 14 RBs. These WRs paid dividends in cash games, while the RBs did not. In fact, WRs above $9,000 were pretty much the best cash game play you could make (RBs in the $4,500-$4,900 tier had a slightly higher percentage of success, but there were only 12 of such RBs all season).
  • There were 288 WRs who hit 2x value in 2015, or 16.9 per week.

Of the 288 WRs who hit 2x value:

  • the average spread was 0.88 (in contrast to QBs and RBs, who are favorites on average), the average over/under was 45.4, and the average team total was 22.3.
  • 48.3 percent were at home and 43.1 percent were favorites, and 29.9 percent had team totals of 24 and above. WRs also contrasted from QBs in RBs in that more than half of their 2x games came as underdogs and on the road.
  • the average receiving line was 6.8 receptions, 102.9 yards, and 1.0 TDs. 
  • 81.9 percent had at least five catches, 51.0 percent reached 100 yards, and 76.3 percent scored at least one TD (which is unsurprisingly higher than on the full-PPR and three-point yardage bonus site DraftKings, where 69.0 percent of WRs to hit cash game value needed at least one TD to do so).

 

Tournament Value

You're generally looking to score at least 180 points to place highly in a tournament, and you are likely to need at least 200 points to win. If your lineup scores three points per $1,000, you'll have a score of 180, which is the value point I will use to examine tournament performance:

Percentage of Time Reaching 3x Value on FanDuel by Salary & Position, 2015
Salary QB 3x% RB 3x% WR 3x% TE 3x% K 3x% D/ST 3x%
$9,000+ 25% 7% 21%      
$8,500-$8,900 19% 9% 16% 0%    
$8,000-$8,400 18% 3% 12% 8%    
$7,500-$7,900 28% 6% 11%      
$7,000-$7,400 34% 12% 9% 0%    
$6,500-$6,900 30% 12% 14% 6%    
$6,000-$6,400 24% 15% 14% 10%    
$5,500-$5,900 17% 10% 15% 12%    
$5,000-$5,400 43% 15% 13% 11% 13% 22%
$4,500-$4,900 50% 17% 33% 13% 8% 17%
$4,000-$4.400   11% 14%     14%
  • The data here shows why it's important to pay up for WR over RB in tournaments -- WRs simply have more top-end upside than RBs. WRs scored three or more points per $1,000 at every salary tier from $7,500 and above.
  • There were 115 WRs who hit 3x value in 2015, or 6.8 per week.

Of the 115 WRs who hit 3x value:

  • the average spread was 0.50, the average over/under was 45.2, and the average team total was 22.3.
  • 51.3 percent were at home, 43.4 percent were favorites, and 28.7 percent had a team total of 24 or more.
  • the average receiving line was 7.7 receptions, 120.8 yards, and 1.4 TDs.
  • 93.9 percent had at least five catches, 66.1 percent reached 100 yards, 93.0 percent had at least one TD, and 42.6 percent had multiple TDs.

 

Individual WR Value

FanDuel WR Stats, 2015
Rk. WR Avg. Val. Fd Pt/G Avg. Sal. 2x% 3x% G
1 Josh Bellamy 2.76 12.4 $4,500 100.0% 0.0% 1
2 Brian Hartline 2.47 12.8 $5,167 100.0% 0.0% 3
3 Doug Baldwin 2.32 14.4 $6,236 42.9% 28.6% 14
4 Allen Robinson 2.30 16.5 $7,294 43.8% 18.8% 16
5 Brandon Marshall 2.26 18.0 $7,994 62.5% 18.8% 16
6 Steve L Smith 2.24 15.4 $6,871 42.9% 28.6% 7
7 Antonio Brown 2.20 19.6 $8,906 43.8% 37.5% 16
8 Eric Decker 2.15 14.3 $6,727 60.0% 6.7% 15
9 Jermaine Kearse 2.14 12.2 $5,733 33.3% 0.0% 3
10 Michael Floyd 2.13 12.1 $5,800 60.0% 30.0% 10
11 Marquess Wilson 2.12 10.4 $4,800 66.7% 33.3% 3
12 Sammy Watkins 2.11 14.5 $6,977 61.5% 23.1% 13
13 Julio Jones 2.10 18.9 $9,063 62.5% 25.0% 16
14 Allen Hurns 2.09 13.0 $6,420 46.7% 26.7% 15
15 Keenan Allen 2.09 16.3 $7,863 37.5% 25.0% 8
16 Julian Edelman 2.07 16.0 $7,800 44.4% 22.2% 9
17 Larry Fitzgerald 2.06 14.4 $7,188 25.0% 12.5% 16
18 DeAndre Hopkins 2.02 17.1 $8,581 50.0% 12.5% 16
19 Jeremy Maclin 2.01 13.4 $6,780 40.0% 26.7% 15
20 Odell Beckham 2.01 18.1 $9,013 46.7% 13.3% 15
21 DeVante Parker 1.98 11.5 $5,820 40.0% 20.0% 5
22 Ted Ginn 1.92 11.0 $5,675 50.0% 25.0% 12
23 Alshon Jeffery 1.90 14.6 $7,744 44.4% 11.1% 9
24 Tyler Lockett 1.90 11.0 $5,860 40.0% 20.0% 5
25 Brandin Cooks 1.88 13.2 $7,094 43.8% 25.0% 16
26 Michael Crabtree 1.87 11.5 $6,257 21.4% 14.3% 14
27 Kamar Aiken 1.87 11.3 $6,027 36.4% 9.1% 11
28 Jarvis Landry 1.87 13.3 $7,163 43.8% 12.5% 16
29 Jordan Matthews 1.84 11.9 $6,531 43.8% 25.0% 16
30 Brandon Coleman 1.82 8.5 $4,750 50.0% 0.0% 2
31 John Brown 1.82 11.1 $6,150 56.3% 6.3% 16
32 Tavon Austin 1.79 10.4 $5,908 25.0% 25.0% 12
33 A.J. Green 1.76 14.5 $8,306 31.3% 6.3% 16
34 Willie Snead 1.75 10.3 $6,064 45.5% 18.2% 11
35 Terrance Williams 1.72 9.5 $5,722 33.3% 11.1% 9
36 Martavis Bryant 1.72 11.8 $6,990 30.0% 10.0% 10
37 James Jones 1.71 9.7 $5,779 42.9% 21.4% 14
38 Demaryius Thomas 1.70 13.7 $8,088 25.0% 0.0% 16
39 Calvin Johnson 1.68 13.7 $8,163 37.5% 18.8% 16
40 Stevie Johnson 1.66 9.0 $5,640 30.0% 20.0% 10
41 Emmanuel Sanders 1.66 12.7 $7,667 33.3% 13.3% 15
42 Nate Washington 1.64 8.4 $5,267 33.3% 11.1% 9
43 Pierre Garcon 1.62 9.5 $5,893 26.7% 6.7% 15
44 Rueben Randle 1.60 9.0 $5,631 30.8% 0.0% 13
45 Anquan Boldin 1.59 9.7 $6,154 38.5% 15.4% 13
46 Amari Cooper 1.59 11.2 $7,088 37.5% 12.5% 16
47 Stefon Diggs 1.58 9.3 $6,133 33.3% 25.0% 12
48 Golden Tate 1.58 10.4 $6,638 18.8% 6.3% 16
49 Kenny Britt 1.58 8.4 $5,400 66.7% 0.0% 3
50 Devin Funchess 1.56 8.4 $5,350 25.0% 25.0% 4
51 Brice Butler 1.54 8.0 $5,200 0.0% 0.0% 1
52 Rishard Matthews 1.53 9.3 $6,275 37.5% 12.5% 8
53 Marvin Jones 1.52 8.3 $5,538 15.4% 7.7% 13
54 T.Y. Hilton 1.51 11.1 $7,307 26.7% 13.3% 15
55 Dontrelle Inman 1.51 8.0 $5,400 20.0% 20.0% 5
56 Mike Evans 1.51 11.7 $7,807 26.7% 6.7% 15
57 Markus Wheaton 1.51 8.4 $5,600 25.0% 0.0% 4
58 Cecil Shorts 1.47 7.9 $5,438 37.5% 12.5% 8
59 Robert Woods 1.45 7.3 $5,080 20.0% 20.0% 5
60 DeSean Jackson 1.45 9.2 $6,440 40.0% 10.0% 10
61 Kendall Wright 1.45 8.4 $5,733 33.3% 22.2% 9
62 Travis Benjamin 1.40 8.3 $5,923 23.1% 7.7% 13
63 Danny Amendola 1.36 8.7 $6,480 40.0% 0.0% 5
64 Corey Brown 1.35 7.3 $5,400 0.0% 0.0% 1
65 Vincent Jackson 1.34 8.9 $6,740 20.0% 10.0% 10
66 Randall Cobb 1.34 10.2 $7,575 12.5% 6.3% 16
67 Donte Moncrief 1.33 8.2 $6,229 21.4% 7.1% 14
68 Marques Colston 1.28 7.0 $5,475 0.0% 0.0% 4
69 Eddie Royal 1.26 6.0 $4,860 20.0% 20.0% 5
70 Mike Wallace 1.21 6.9 $5,700 14.3% 14.3% 7
71 Leonard Hankerson 1.18 6.7 $5,775 25.0% 25.0% 4
72 Brandon LaFell 1.11 6.7 $6,270 10.0% 0.0% 10
73 Dorial Green-Beckham 1.10 6.0 $5,417 16.7% 0.0% 6
74 Jamison Crowder 1.07 5.8 $5,550 25.0% 0.0% 4
75 Dez Bryant 1.05 8.2 $7,878 11.1% 0.0% 9
76 Davante Adams 1.03 6.1 $6,090 20.0% 0.0% 10
77 Torrey Smith 0.90 5.5 $6,150 16.7% 0.0% 6
78 Albert Wilson 0.81 3.9 $4,800 0.0% 0.0% 1
79 Keshawn Martin 0.80 4.3 $5,325 25.0% 0.0% 4
80 Chris Givens 0.78 3.5 $4,500 0.0% 0.0% 1
81 Malcom Floyd 0.76 4.2 $5,625 0.0% 0.0% 4
82 Andre Johnson 0.72 4.4 $6,300 0.0% 0.0% 3
83 Percy Harvin 0.67 3.8 $5,600 0.0% 0.0% 3
84 Cole Beasley 0.64 3.3 $5,250 0.0% 0.0% 4
85 Nelson Agholor 0.49 2.8 $5,600 0.0% 0.0% 2
86 Charles Johnson 0.46 2.5 $5,400 0.0% 0.0% 3
87 Roddy White 0.46 3.1 $6,420 0.0% 0.0% 5
88 Ty Montgomery 0.43 2.5 $5,800 0.0% 0.0% 1
89 Louis Murphy 0.00 0.0 $5,000 0.0% 0.0% 1

 

Final Takeaways 

When you're looking to pay up on FanDuel, WRs are generally your best bet, especially in GPPs. Unlike some of the other positions, favorable Vegas odds don't play as big of a role in WR production. Instead, accurately projecting volume is paramount for WRs, and a WR being able to secure at least five receptions and score a TD is more often than not a prerequisite for a good ROI. Red zone targets are also key, as a WR needed a TD over three-fourths of the time just to hit 2x value. Since FanDuel is not full-PPR and there are no yardage bonuses, WRs need monster games to put up GPP value -- the average receiving stat line in to hit tournament value was significantly higher than on DraftKings. 

 

4for4's DFS Subscription has all the tools you need to be a profitable cash game or GPP player: Lineup Generator with floor & ceiling projectionsStack Value Reports for all 2-, 3-, and 4-man stacks, site-specific cash game & GPP write-ups, defensive matchups to exploit, downloadable CSVs with salaries & projections, in-depth content, and more. Sign up here!


Appendix

WR Sample Size
Salary Count
9000+ 34
8500-8900 37
8000-8400 67
7500-7900 81
7000-7400 106
6500-6900 113
6000-6400 139
5500-5900 136
5000-5400 94
4500-4900 21
Total 828

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Filed Under: Preseason, 2016

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