Fanduel Week 7 Values & Top Plays
How Ownership Relates to Variance in Cash Game Lineups
When creating cash game lineups, the object is to reduce variance. You want to create lineups in such a way that they can consistently finish in the top 43 percent of entries. Besides player floors and volatility, another thing to keep in mind is the field you’re competing against. Ownership percentage is important not just to make contrarian selections in GPPs, but also to ensure you’re not accidentally introducing unnecessary variance into your cash game lineup.
You don’t want to get into a situation where you give the field an advantage by owning a player whose performance is inversely related to a player that is highly owned. This usually happens when a team has both a favorable rushing and passing matchup.
For example, the Falcons are giving up the fourth-most rushing and fourth-most passing yards per game this season. It’s likely that Joe Flacco and Justin Forsett are all highly owned in cash games. Even though the most likely outcome is that both have solid games, we are essentially trying to predict the outcome of an extremely small sample size (one game), so there is a significant chance that either Baltimore’s passing game or running game goes off at the expense of the other.
Since RB production is inversely related to QB/WR production, if you owned Forsett but not Flacco, the field would get a big advantage over you if Baltimore's passing game took center stage and got the entire TD distribution that day. While the reverse is true as well, remember the goal of cash games is to limit variance. You don’t need to risk attempting to gain a huge advantage over the field when the downside is the field will gain a huge advantage over you.
In this case, it would be safer to roster either Flacco/Forsett together or not at all. By rostering them together, you can limit your floor by taking advantage if one goes off while the other has a quiet game. Be aware of these situations as they arise throughout the season.
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Values & Top Plays
QB Russell Wilson @ STL $8,500
In DFS, it’s important to be able to incorporate new information into our analysis, while at the same time not falling prey to recency bias. The new information we know is this: the Cowboys’ defense is a more difficult matchup for QBs than anyone could have imagined prior to the season, as they now rank third in QB aFPA.
Recency bias may shake your confidence in Wilson’s ability to rebound against the Rams, but do remember he was one of the hottest commodities in fantasy prior to the Cowboys game. He was coming off a thrashing of the Redskins, who were dead last in QB aFPA. The Rams are nearly as bad, ranking 29th in QB aFPA. St. Louis won’t be able to play ball control offense like the Cowboys did, and Wilson should have no problem paying off his cost. He’s still a top-five QB in FanDuel points per game despite last week’s dud. He’ll also likely be low owned because of it.
QB Carson Palmer @ OAK $7,300
The Raiders’ run defense has been so bad that teams are only hoisting up 30 passes per game against them. No matter, as QB is the only position where it’s best to seek efficiency rather than volume for fantasy purposes. The Raiders are giving up a 71 percent completion rate and 7.9 yards per attempt, and are a bottom-10 team in terms of QB aFPA. Palmer has been efficient, completing 64 percent of his passes for 277 yards and 2 TDs per game, without an interception. He’s a safe cash play with a lot of upside because the Cardinals love to throw deep.