FanDuel Wild Card Slate Breakdown

Jan 08, 2021
FanDuel Wild Card Slate Breakdown

FanDuel has broken up Wild Card weekend into two main slates, Saturday Main and Sunday Main, with smaller prize pools for the Saturday-Sunday slate. The following will focus on strategies for those one-day main slates. For those used to playing full slates, consider these potential adjustments or listen to this DFS MVP theory segment on playing short slates:

  • Short slates are not all about value - With so few players in the pool, there will inevitably be a ton of overlap in lineups which naturally leads to a high variance slate. For this reason, it makes sense to focus on GPPs. (Putting your tournament lineups in small 50/50s, however, can be a nice way to hedge if you are not playing any cash games.) Rather than building a lineup with the best point-per-dollar plays, rosters should center around game flow scenarios and build lineups that follow a logical narrative relative to those scripts.
  • Consider non-traditional lineup builds - On short slates, there are some lineup construction strategies to look at that would never make sense on a full slate. Some examples are playing more than one running back from the same team in a lineup, rostering one or two players against your defense, and leaving (lots of) salary on the table. It’s going to be tough to find contrarian stand-alone players—many winning tournament lineups don’t have a player with single-digit ownership. Look for other ways to be unique.
  • There is leverage to be had at the “onesies” - Full slates will rarely have any quarterback, tight end, or defense in more than 15%–20% of lineups in large-field GPPs. On slates such as this one, players at those positions could exceed 50% ownership in even the largest fields. This presents a rare opportunity to be contrarian at positions where ownership is usually quite flat.
  • Stick to a (relatively) small player pool - It’s tempting to try to cover all of your bases when the player pool is so small but that will only dilute your good reads. Narrow in on a small core with your favorite off-the-board plays and be way overweight on those players. Coupled with strong correlation plays, this is how to build a profitable portfolio on a short slate.
  • Don’t forget about late swaps - If your lineups are slanted towards game stacks, especially for the earlier games, it’s imperative to see where you stand before the other games start. In the event that your lineups get off to a bad start, swapping to contrarian players in late games is often the only way to gain ground on the field.

Saturday Slate

Colts @ Bills (-6.5); O/U 51.0

Buffalo is the only team playing on Saturday with an implied total above 28. With their offense heavily concentrated on their two best players, Josh Allen ($9,000) and Stefon Diggs ($8,700) will draw the highest ownership at their positions and are core plays in cash games. John Brown ($5,700) used Week 17 as a warm-up for the playoffs after missing the five previous games. His performance indicates that he is at least close to 100% and his sub-$6K salary should make him one of the more popular receivers, as well.

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