General Rules 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 spreads 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.
Tyler Lockett can break a slate. He’s an easy choice to be in your captain pool because his ceiling is 40 fantasy points. He doesn’t require a ton of volume either. He scored 29 DraftKings points in Week 1 on five targets. The nature of his output is usually a ceiling game or a dud, there often isn’t much in between. That tends to make me slot him into the captain, but be underweight on him in the flex. At his price, if he smashes for 30-40 points, he’s going to be the optimal captain. Conversely, if it’s one of his non-smash games, it’s more than likely he won’t be a flex play because his floor is 3-30. DK Metcalf has a questionable tag, but should be able to go. He has a higher floor and narrower range of outcomes. He and Lockett have rarely had ceiling games together either. The way I am going to approach this is to limit DK in the flex when Lockett is in the captain and not slot Lockett in at all when DK is the captain.
Russell Wilson is going to have a difficult time landing in the captain spot unless he gets his legs involved in this game. His dispersion of targets is too concentrated for him to beat Lockett or Metcalf on a given week. If you look at the first four games of the year. Lockett outshined him in Week 1 and 2, while Metcalf did the same in Week 3. It wasn’t until this past week where he ran for a touchdown that he was able to beat the two out. He hasn’t run a ton this year, so my stance will be underweight on him in the captain spot, but overweight in the flex because of his high floor.
Alex Collins can provide some relief if slotted into the captain spot. If Chris Carson is inactive, Collins should see a solid amount of work and would require just a bit of touchdown variance to get into the optimal captain spot. If a high number of studs have median outputs, he could be the key that unlocks the optimal lineup.
Cooper Kupp’s salary makes it difficult to get him in on DraftKings, but his usage is tough to ignore. If you are rostering Kupp, you are projecting a floor game for a host of talented players or ceiling games for a few cheap players. Obviously Kupp has a massive ceiling, but rostering him at 1.5x salary on DraftKings makes the rest of your lineup thin at flex. On FanDuel it’s not much of an issue.
Matthew Stafford could get there as a quarterback who has a bunch of targets to spread the ball around to. Sure Kupp has been his main focus, but the receiving corps goes deep with Woods, Jefferson, and DeSean Jackson. Not to mention Tyler Higbee and Darrell Henderson can get involved as well. There is definitely a path in this game to Stafford throwing four touchdowns to four different receivers and landing in the captain spot. If you slot him in I’d pair him with two or three of his weapons hoping for a 5-50-1 type line from all of them.
Darrell Henderson came back to all the touches last week. Sony Michel had three carries last week while Henderson carried the load. The Seahawks run defense has been extremely suspect. In fact the defense in general has been pretty wretched. If Henderson is in your flex, his success directly impacts the pass-catchers on his team. You can pair him with Stafford as maybe they connect on a passing touchdown, but I’d limit the flex spots to at most two Rams receivers and have the majority of my lineups at 1.
DeSean Jackson has been getting his share of the air yards, clocking in at 19% despite only seeing 8% of the total targets. That indicates his depth of target is very high. He doesn’t have the volume to hit the optimal captain spot on DraftKings often, but one catch at his depth of target can land him as a flex. Van Jefferson has been extremely solid, he’s right behind Jackson in aDOT, with 13 air yards per target. He came close to being a captain recommendation, but I think there’s better cheap value in Collins (if Carson sits). Both make great add ons in Stafford captain lineups or uncorrelated plays in Seahawks heavy stacks. Robert Woods is incredibly hard to get behind due to his pricing and usage. Players like Jackson, Jefferson, Collins, Higbee, and even Will Dissly are more enticing because if you break down their opportunities per dollar, Woods is being overvalued based on past success.
Tyler Higbee is the only player on the Rams’ roster that has a lower TD rate, than expected TD rate, meaning his usage to this point in the season indicates he should have more touchdowns than he currently does. That’s something to keep in mind for Stafford captain lineups. Often when quarterbacks have big days, their tight ends benefit.
After Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf’s 80% combined market share of air yards, Freddie Swain enters with a measly 8%. His salary is cheap enough that he can be the last man in. He’ll be needed if the higher-priced players explode and he gets some touchdown luck like last week at his cheap price. The same goes for Will Dissly if Gerald Everett remains out. He can be slotted in as a cheap option in hopes touchdown variance catapults him into the optimal.
The Rams DST could be a key to this matchup as Russ can hold onto the ball too long trying to make something happen. I can’t see the Seahawks DST getting into the optimal often with the way they’ve been playing coupled with the way the Rams’ offense has been scoring. Given that I can see points scored in this game, both kickers are in play. Make sure you are using wide receiver heavy lineups
Captain: Tyler Lockett
Flex: Russell Wilson, Tyler Higbee, Darrell Henderson
Captain: DK Metcalf
Flex: Russell Wilson, Matthew Stafford, DeSean Jackson
Captain: Russell Wilson
Flex: DK Metcalf, Darrell Henderson, Van Jefferson
Captain: Cooper Kupp
Flex: Matthew Stafford, Freddie Swain, Rams DST
Captain: Matthew Stafford
Flex: Cooper Kupp, Van Jefferson, Alex Collins
Captain: Alex Collins
Flex: Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Will Dissly
Captain: Darrell Henderson
Flex: Russell Wilson, DK Metcalf, Van Jefferson