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.
The Chiefs’ offense has been wretched compared to what we’ve been spoiled with the last few seasons, however on a single-game slate none of that matters. Tyreek Hill of course can break a slate with a 10/150/2 type line. The Giants’ secondary hasn’t been terrible. Despite only doing it once this season, he’s getting the requisite volume to do so. He has three 12-target games in his last four games. Patrick Mahomes needs this game to get right and I’m creating lineups like this is the Chiefs of yesteryear. Mahomes makes sense as a captain when you are heavy on the tertiary pieces. There has been a slew of tipped balls and miscommunications that just don’t normally happen for the Chiefs. I think they clean that up and Mahomes has a ceiling game in prime time.
Travis Kelce makes for a solid captain as well. You can even make a case for him to have more usage than Hill. Over the last three weeks, Kelce is tied for target share with 23% and has him beat with 27% of the air yards. It’s nearly impossible to get all three players in the same lineup, however.
Darrell Williams makes a nice leverage captain off the Chiefs’ passing attack. Williams has looked solid since replacing Edwards-Helaire. It’s not probable that Williams lands as the optimal captain, that’s just not the way the Chiefs’ offense works. However, it is possible that he lucks into some touchdown variance at the goal line as he did in his first start of the season.
Daniel Jones actually makes for a decent showdown captain on this slate. He isn’t cheap, but the mobility and willingness to use his legs when things break can land him in the captain spot without even having a ton of success throwing the football. The Chiefs’ defense has been putrid this season, so a shootout game with Jones adding fantasy points on the ground is quite clearly in the range of outcomes.
Sterling Shepard and Kadarius Toney are both questionable coming into this game, but could see a big workload if either one or the other were to be inactive. The Giants’ receiving corps has been a mess this season due to injuries. Kenny Golladay will again be out for this game, which puts the brunt of the workload squarely on Shepard and Toney’s backs. I like Shepard a bit more working from his slot position if both were to be active. Both players have been on and off the field, but Shepard drew 14 targets in Week 6 and Toney say 13 in Week 5, so we know there is potential lurking
Devontae Booker has basically been a plodder in relief of Saquon Barkley. Only average around three yards per carry. He basically needs a touchdown and a few catches to hit value. That can obviously happen, but I think it’s smart to be underweight on him relative to the field due to his price/ceiling combination. Elijah Penny is extremely inexpensive and could sneak a goal line touchdown. If you need a last man in and have limited salary remaining, he isn’t a terrible plug-in.
Darius Slayton, John Ross, and Dante Pettis will be the tertiary receivers behind Shepard and Toney, but one of these guys can shine. I think I like John Ross the best given his cheap price. He can get loose in the secondary and pay off his price tag in one play. In fact he already did it early this year. Slayton could potentially be the slate breaker as he has seen more air yards over the course of the season than any other Giants’ receiver. Those targets have usually come due to an injury, but with Golladay off the field, he should get the requisite snaps to have a chance at a big game. Pettis is more of a last man in sprinkle if you are multi-entering because of the number of receivers running ahead of him.
Evan Engram has had rumors floating around that he may be on the trade block. This could be a game where they showcase him for trade offers. He’s a safe floor play as he’ll probably see and catch a handful of targets. He just usually never does anything with them, resulting in a lot of 6-45 type lines. I like adding him to Chiefs’ heavy stacks in hopes Jones has to pepper him on a few late drives. Kyle Rudolph is more of a pairing with Daniel Jones as his upside comes from touchdowns in the red zone. I like Rudolph as a last man in when you have Jones somewhere in your lineup, but especially in the captain.
Mecole Hardman, Demarcus Robinson, and Byron Pringle make for a great second receiver in showdown lineups. It’s extremely tough to fit Mahomes, Tyreek, and Kelce in the same lineup. However, it’s not too difficult to fit Mahomes, one of Tyreek/Kelce, and one of Hardman/Robinson/Pringle. I think it’s the best way to double stack Mahomes with his pass-catchers. You don’t want to jam all three studs and end up playing three scrubs in your lineup, but you also don’t want to count on two tertiary players having to have ceiling games. There really isn’t a method to the madness, but I would say that Hill and Pringle have been negatively correlated the most.
Jerick McKinnon has been working in a good bit, seeing around 23 snaps in each of the last two games. I think he can be used in lineups with Daniel Jones at captain that project the Giants have success in this game as he’ll be on the field in two-minute and obvious passing situations. Josh Gordon and Noah Gray are mass multi-entry clicks as they’ve played and been targeted a little bit over the last two games. They are extremely thin and wouldn’t creep into my lineups until I got to the 30-40 lineup range, and even at that point are just a one or two-lineup type dart.
Captain/MVP: Patrick Mahomes
Flex: Tyreek Hill, Mecole Hardman, John Ross
Captain/MVP: Tyreek Hill
Flex: Patrick Mahomes, Demarcus Robinson, Sterling Shepard
Captain/MVP: Travis Kelce
Flex: Patrick Mahomes, Kadaius Toney, Byron Pringle
Captain/MVP: Darrel Williams
Flex: Daniel Jones, Evan Engram, Chiefs DST
Captain/MVP: Daniel Jones
Flex: Darius Slayton, Kadarius Toney, Travis Kelce
Captain/MVP: Sterling Shepard or Kadarius Toney
Flex: Daniel Jones, Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce