General Rule for Creating Showdown/MVP Lineups
- Correlate with your Captain/MVP - Make sure you are creating a roster that makes sense with your 1.5x player.
- On DraftKings, lean RB/WR in the captain. Though QB can finish as the optimal captain, it’s often overused by the field relative to its success rate. When you are using a QB in the captain, I like to use a lot of his pass-catchers. Because the likely scenario if a QB ends up as the captain on DK is he spread his touchdowns around to multiple receivers and not one skill player had a ceiling game.
- On FanDuel the MVP spot doesn’t cost you 1.5x salary which means you’re just trying to get the highest-scoring player in that spot. Contrary to DK, it’s often the QB because of the scoring system. I would lean QB/RB on FD, but there are always exceptions to the rule.
- Leave salary on the table - I’m not just talking about a few hundred. Don’t be afraid to leave a few thousand on the table. In a slate that has an extremely limited number of viable options, there is a much greater chance for lineup duplication. It may not seem like much of an issue, but it can decimate your expected value to put in lineups that are going to split with 500 other people.
- Multi-enter if you can. Single-game slates have so much variance that the first play of the game can take you completely out of contention if you only have one lineup. It’s best to build a bunch of lineups (you don’t have to max enter) that concentrate on different game scripts and a handful of different correlated captains.
- DST and Kickers, while not very exciting usually offer a solid floor for cheap. Especially in game scripts that go under expected point totals. I would only use at most two per lineup.
- When creating single-game lineups, the most important part is creating correlated lineups according to a projected game script, and not pinpointing the exact five or six players who will score the most fantasy points on the slate.
Allen Robinson’s target share and air yards share make him an elite captain play on DraftKings. At 28% of targets and 34% of air yards, Robinson owns one of the biggest discrepancies in target share from the secondary receiver teammates. Because of this, it really makes every other candidate for captain on the Bears. David Montgomery can slide into the optimal captain with some touchdown variance goal line carries induced by tackles at the one-yard line or end zone pass interference calls. Montgomery has been involved in the passing game and it would behoove the Bears to use the short passing and screen game to keep the Rams defensive line honest.
The Captain spot on the Rams side of the ball is pretty straight forward, too. Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods eat up nearly half of the Rams’ targets. I don’t necessarily have a preference, but Cooper Kupp has a bit more touchdown upside. I will add that Robert Woods usually correlates poorly with running backs because he’s given carries in the red zone and could steal the upside from the Rams’ running backs with a rushing touchdown. Jared Goff has enough targets at his disposal that he could sneak into the optimal lineup as a captain if he spreads the ball around. The Bears’ defense has been solid, so I’m not going to go too crazy with anyone other than Robinson, Montgomery, Kupp, and Woods.
Darrell Henderson is operating as the RB1 for the Rams, but has been splitting reps pretty evenly with Malcolm Brown, while Cam Akers plays third fiddle. I think we can play Henderson and maybe even Brown as captains or MVPs sparingly, but much rather them as a flex play which is why they are listed in this section. Henderson has been the main runner, so he best correlates with the Rams defense and the Bears’ pass-catchers, while Brown has been a better pass-catcher. You can add Brown to Rams’ stacks that feature a pass-heavy game script.
Despite only seeing 11% of the targets, Josh Reynolds air yards share of 20% indicates that his targets are high-value deep shots. He’s probably my favorite dart throw from the value range. Gerald Everett will also be utilized a bit more if Tyler Higbee can’t play. Anytime one of Higbee or Everett misses, the other has a great opportunity to soak up targets.
The Bears don’t have much in the way of reserve running backs, which is why I think their ancillary wide receivers and tight ends are going to be crucial to nail down in this game. Darnell Mooney has replaced Anthony Miller as the WR2 at least in terms of target share. Nick Foles has locked on to Mooney in certain situations which has resulted in Mooney seeing 24 targets to Miller’s 17 over the last four games. I’d prefer Mooney, but Miller is a bit cheaper and may fit into a more stars-and-scrubs type lineup construction, which is fine. Cordarelle Patterson is a unique player in the Bears’ offense. He’s had 22 carries and is used more as a rusher, so he’s not necessarily a passing game stack. Jimmy Graham has had a revival with Nick Foles getting a ton of red-zone looks, leading the team with four touchdowns and ranking behind only Robinson in target share at 15%. Both Cole Kmet and Demetrius Harris have some appeal as one-offs in chalkier lineups as they have been on the field enough and/or have seen a handful of targets.
The DSTs and kickers are more in play in this game than any in recent memory. I think a 20-16 type slugfest is well within reason for this game. Aaron Donald on the Rams’ side and the tandem of Khalil Mack and Akeem Hicks on the Bears’ side have been wreaking havoc on opposing quarterbacks. The Rams offensive line has been solid and I would expect Sean McVay to try to scheme Mack and Hicks out of the game, so I lean being a bit heavier on the Rams’ defense. Vegas has them as a six-point favorite as well.
Captain/MVP: Allen Robinson
Flex: Cooper Kupp, Nick Foles, Darnell Mooney
Captain/MVP: Jared Goff
Flex: Robert Woods, Josh Reynolds, Allen Robinson
Captain/MVP: David Montgomery
Flex: Bears DST, Jimmy Graham, Cooper Kupp
Captain/MVP: Cooper Kupp
Flex: Jared Goff, Gerald Everett, Allen Robinson