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NFL DFS Week 13 WOAT: DraftKings Weekly Ownership and Trends
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This will be a weekly series discussing DraftKings Weekly Ownership and Trends (WOAT) in Guaranteed Prize Pool (GPP) tournaments that we can use to better ourselves as DFS players. If pricing were perfectly efficient, some DFS players could beat GPPs on ownership alone. Vince Lombardi once said ownership isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.

Shout out to my friends at The Fantasy Fanatics for access to their NFL Ownership tools which I leveraged for most of this analysis. You can access all ownership data in their premium tools.

Week 13 Look Back and Week 14 Look Ahead

It is live final week! Well it isn’t live final week for me but it might be for you. And if it isn’t for you maybe it is for one of your friends, or your enemies, but I digress. With many of the biggest DFS names focused on the biggest prize of them all, that leaves less competition and more prizes for average joes like you and me, so let’s get it!

The story of the fantasy season continues to be David Johnson and Le’veon Bell. Even at $9000+ prize tags they continue to be popular, representing a combined 70% ownership in GPPs and 120% ownership in cash game formats, which still seems to be far too low. Now we’re looking at yet another price bump and left to ponder some more. I guess we now know what it would have been like to try to make decisions around Ladainian Tomlinson if DFS was around in his prime. Because of these dynamics, guys like Jeremy Hill ended up super popular last week at 30% ownership in GPP an 50% in cash. While he was fortunate enough to fall across the goal line, the rest of his results were far less satisfying and his performance was adequate enough to get you into the money without flirting with top prizes. This also means we saw insane 30% ownership in GPPs and 60% in cash on DORIAL GREEN BECKHAM. Think about that for a second, DGB was the highest owned wideout. We have officially hit a point where DFS is short for David Johnson Fantasy Sports.

Because David Johnson and Le’veon Bell are going to dictate the entire slate, we may as well start there. If you play David Johnson and a $3k or so defense you’re left with an average of $5338 to spread at other positions. This means it will be pretty damn hard to pay up at other roster spots, which is why last week we saw Antonio Brown (14%) an Mike Evans / Odell Beckham (10%) types at low ownership. In fact of all wide receivers above $5000 only Julio Jones cracked 15% ownership. I’ll say that again, just one wide receiver cracked 15% ownership, until you got down to the likes of NFL superstars Tyreek Hill (28%), Anquan Boldin (yes, the 2016 version) (17%) and of course DGB. While it might be optimal for cash games, and who knows maybe even GPP, it truly is wild and something I haven’t seen a lot of in DFS.


So what can we take away from this?

  1. Everyone’s slate starts with David Johnson. David Johnson is Daily Fantasy Sports.
  2. David Johnson alone will put people onto guys like Ladarius Green, Cameron Brate, Vance McDonald and Lance Kendricks. These names will be higher owned than Tyler Eifert, Jimmy Graham, and Jordan Reed.
  3. David Johnson is also choosing your wide receivers! He wants you to invest in Emmanuel Sanders if you’re paying up, but he really wants you to go after offensive focal points like Cameron Meredith, Pierre Garcon, and the Taylor Gabriel’s of the world. David Johnson is half man, half amazing. Half wide receiver, half running back, so he definitely does not recommend paying up for guys like Odell Beckham, Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, TY Hilton or Amari Cooper. They are mere mortals who may have 40-point upside but can’t play running back like he can.

Yes, some of this is a little facetious, but David Johnson is more or less dictating the slate for us, and the choices I’ve laid out above are the ones you are going to have to make in both cash games and GPPs this coming weekend. In the past I’ve focused on market efficiency and how we are best at predicting QB and wide receiver value. This rings doubly true when names mentioned as chalk are wide receivers like Tyreek Hill. So even if you do choose to walk down the David Johnson path in tournaments, you should do yourself the service of digging a level deeper on the “sleeper” that everyone will own.

Ownership – Key Stacks

With stacking being the most popular GPP strategy, the way people approach stacks is always interesting to me. What are the most popular stacks? Are there sharp and square stacks? Again, leveraging The Fantasy Fanatics we can take a look at in-depth granular ownership data on how people are approaching their stacks…

Stacking has sort of gone by the wayside a bit. We’ve gotten lost in all the David Johnson / Le’Veon Bell hype, but it continues to be an important factor for tournaments. The most popular stacks in the Millionaire Maker are outlined below:

Stack Team Pos Salary % of Cap Millionaire Maker Ownership
Matt Ryan, Julio Jones ATL QB,WR 15500 31.00% 4.77%
Drew Brees, Michael Thomas NO QB,WR 14500 29.00% 4.47%
Drew Brees, Brandin Cooks NO QB,WR 14000 28.00% 3.47%
Russell Wilson, Doug Baldwin SEA QB,WR 13000 26.00% 2.62%
Drew Brees, Willie Snead NO QB,WR 12700 25.40% 2.37%
Colin Kaepernick, Vance McDonald SF QB,TE 9000 18.00% 2.16%
Jimmy Graham, Russell Wilson SEA TE,QB 11800 23.60% 1.49%
Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. NYG QB,WR 14400 28.80% 1.47%
Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown PIT QB,WR 16500 33.00% 1.46%
Mike Evans, Jameis Winston TB WR,QB 14800 29.60% 1.32%
Aaron Rodgers, Jordy Nelson GB QB,WR 13700 27.40% 1.29%
Drew Brees, Brandin Cooks, Michael Thomas NO QB,WR,WR 20900 41.80% 1.18%
Matthew Stafford, Golden Tate DET QB,WR 13200 26.40% 1.17%
Jimmy Graham, Russell Wilson, Doug Baldwin SEA TE,QB,WR 18500 37.00% 1.06%
Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown, Le’Veon Bell PIT QB,WR,RB 25700 51.40% 0.97%



Of those, the Stafford/Tate stack topped many GPPs, particularly for those who were not fortunate enough to predict the Elite Flacco performance. With multi-entering tournaments being a “thing”, many players are trying to stack up the same game in multiple ways, which is why we see a lot of team overlap with games like New Orleans and Seattle featuring multiple highly owned options. Some candidates for that approach this week would be the Indianapolis squad, Cincinnati versus Cleveland perhaps, and the Tampa Bay vs New Orleans game. The other stack trend I’ve noticed is people like to have a certain level of comfort in the name value of who they are stacking, which can leave pretty low ownership on guys like Tom Brady, Rivers or Cousins who spread the ball around to multiple weapons.

Whether you’re competing for $2MM prizes or entering two lineups into the $3 3-max, understanding how the market is thinking about a slate can help frame up your strategy. Just remember, only you can help prevent your lineup dumpster fires.

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