FanDuel Hindsight Week 12: Doug Baldwin Rises Above Mediocrity
Welcome to FanDuel Hindsight, where we'll recap the previous week on FanDuel, focusing on the Sunday Million tournament, which has a $1 Million grand prize. We'll use the benefit of hindsight to see what lessons can be learned about the Sunday Million winner's low-owned, difference-making plays, then check in on how the most popular plays of the week fared.
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In addition to Wilson-Baldwin and Peterson-Vikings, some other pairings of note are Blair Walsh with the Vikings (kicker and defense are positively correlated) and Odell Beckham with Jordan Reed (players on opposing passing game tend to be correlated as well.
Let's break down the difference-making plays.
Why He Was Low-Owned: Thomas Rawls was a popular play, and most entrants tend to avoid the QB-RB correlation, even though it is slightly positive.
Hindsight Bias: With Pittsburgh coming to town, the threat of a shootout was there. Wilson had put up his first big game in a while the week before, and was a member of last week's winning lineup.
Why He Was Low-owned: With a myriad of options at RB at much cheaper price points, Peterson's ownership was held in check as one of the most expensive players on the slate. The Falcons had quietly been one of the best teams against the run coming into the game.
Hindsight Bias: The Falcons had been good late, but so had Peterson, with 100 yards and/or a TD in each of his last five games coming into his road tilt with Atlanta. With the Falcons struggling on offense and missing Devonta Freeman, game script was not likely to get away from the Vikings.
Why He Was Low-Owned: The Chiefs defense had been playing lights out coming into the game, having not given up more than 20 points in a game since Week 4.
Hindsight Bias: Despite the Chiefs' recent defensive success, this is a situation when buying into coach speak would have been advantageous. During the week, Bills head coach Rex Ryan spoke about how Tyrod Taylor needs to "force the issue" more with Watkins. Watkins drew 10 targets -- his most of the season -- and finished with a 6-158-2 line.
WR Doug Baldwin
Why He Was Low-Owned: Having caught three or fewer passes in more than half of his games coming into Week 12, Baldwin -- famously called "mediocre" by Cris Carter before last year's Super Bowl -- has not been a consistent fantasy asset all season. With Thomas Rawls as a chalk play, no one was going with a WR on the same team.
Hindsight Bias: Baldwin stacked with Wilson was a nice contrarian stack that played off the huge Rawls ownership. Baldwin had begun to come alive recently, with 13 catches for 190 yards and two TDs in his previous two games coming into this affair.
How Did the Most Highly Owned Plays of the Week Fare?
QB Brian Hoyer 18.6% Owned, 14.9 Points
Hoyer threw for 205 yards, two scores, and only six incompletions on 27 attempts en route to an easy victory against the Saints. While many targeted Hoyer due to the Saints' weaknesses defending the pass, they had also been bad against the run. Houston was able to rack up 167 yards on the ground on 38 carries, which limited Hoyer numbers-wise.
RB Thomas Rawls 31.2% Owned, 14.1 Points
RB T.J. Yeldon 23.4% Owned, 10.2 Points
As TJ Hernandez pointed out on the Week 12 DFS MVP Podcast, more than 95 percent of Jacksonville's offensive TDs have come through the air. Yeldon amassed a solid 82 total yards and four catches, but unsurprisingly failed to reach the end zone.
WR DeAndre Hopkins 52.9% Owned, 6.1 Points
A week after burning Darrell Revis, Hopkins was not needed much in his team's 24-6 disposal of the Saints. Brian Hoyer need to throw only 27 passes, which translated into a season-low amount of targets (8) for Hopkins, who finished with a 5-36 line. Hoyer's two TDs went to Ryan Griffin and Cecil Shorts.
WR Odell Beckham 35.8% Owned, 24.7 Points
WR Larry Fitzgerald 23.4% Owned, 11.6 Points
Fitzgerald caught 10 passes in the game, but was mostly an underneath threat, as he was able to muster only 66 scoreless yards in Arizona's narrow road win.
TE Delanie Walker 20.2% Owned, 12.1 Points
As a chalk play against a Raiders defense that has had trouble defending the TE all season, Walker had a good game, catching six balls for 91 yards. Unfortunately, Walker did not score a TD, which limited his worth in GPPs.
D Kansas City Chiefs 26% Owned, 5 Points
Despite having not allowed more than 24 points in a game since Week 4, the Chiefs were repeatedly torched by the Tyrod Taylor to Sammy Watkins connection. Watkins made some great individual plays and the Bills were able to play from ahead for most of the game, limiting the opportunities for the Chiefs defense to make plays.