Scores were a little lower in the winning lineups even in the large contests in Week 8 of the 2020 NFL season as a lot of high owned players produced flops while some lower owned pivots had career outings. Of the 17 most owned players in the DraftKings NFL $3.5M Fantasy Football Millionaire contest, only seven of those players even managed double digit scores. In Week 8, 160 points on DraftKings was a solid score in single entry contests, while a week ago players needed closer to 200 points to have a solid score – a solid reminder that players aren’t competing to get to a certain score every week but against other players in a shared marketplace. The big stories of Week 8 included Dalvin Cook’s return from injury to an 88% snap rate resulting in 226 combined yards and four TDs, the Dolphins DST winning Tua his first NFL start by scoring TDs on defence and special teams, an incomprehensible three headed RBBC in Indianapolis, and the Seahawks killing all their double stacks again despite scoring 30+ points for the second week in a row. The pendulum swung hard in Week 8.
NFL $3.5M Fantasy Football Millionaire
The big million-dollar winner on DraftKings was “ghartman314” with a score of 244.04 points – a full 35 points lower than the winning score from Week 7. The million dollar build formula was a “double stack and bring one back” with Mahomes, Robinson, and Kelce with Mims coming back from the Jets. Stars and scrubs was a winning formula on Sunday afternoon with near minimum salary options at RB and WR. Playing all three of Robinson, Mims, and Bourne near $3K allowed “ghartman314” to pay up for Henry, Cook, and Metcalf – two of which had huge days at moderate ownership. Cook coming off injury came in at only 10.4% ownership and had the highest scoring day of any player on the slate at 51.6 points.
Of the 89 entries “ghartman314” had in the contest, it appears minimum single stacking QB with one target from their offence was the basic rule of thumb. Some double stacks and bring backs happened, but more as a result of the player pool than any particular design. It was likely an exceptionally profitable day for them as the Miami DST, Cook, Mahomes, Robinson, Allen and Kelce made up six of their top nine exposures in their player pool, all between 25-54%.
It’s been a common story this year that high priced QBs with expensive skill position players have gone under owned in large MME tournaments as players look to game stack and struggle to fit in all the high-priced pieces. Pivoting to Robinson over Hill though in the Chiefs double stack made a lot of salary sense and worked out even though Hill had multiple TDs in the game. Bringing back a piece of the Jets terrible offence may have seemed a poor decision initially, but injuries freeing up near minimum priced receivers to get a positive game script in a blowout made it a solid option.
NFL $200K Game Changer [$50K to 1st, Single Entry]
In the world of high stakes single entry contests on DraftKings “jrstout2217” was the big winner with a score of 187.22 points. Their build strategy of “single stack and bring one back” with Tannehill and Davis with AJ Green coming back was good enough to grind out a win even if two of those three pieces weren’t very productive. Four of their nine lineup spots came in sub 5% owned and three were 2% or lower in Tannehill, Davis, and Ebron. These low owned players weren’t the huge difference makers in the lineup for the most part, but Davis made a huge impact. Winning a single entry GPP with two snowflakes just goes to show again that you don’t need to be perfect to win in single entry contests.
Overall, three of the top four owned players in the contest didn’t even score double digits – Hunt, Garoppolo, and Mims – and “jrstout2217” avoided them all. The only one of the top five plays in the contest that hit in any way was Jamaal Williams at 64.54% and even he wasn’t a must have to win. Week 8 was one for the contrarians.
$2.5M NFL Sunday Million
The million-dollar winner on Fanduel was “duelyou” with a score of 211.24 points. Their “single stack and bring one back” with Aaron Rodgers, not with Adams and his three TDs, but with Tonyan and Cook coming back was a unique build to say the least. It must have been quite a ride to watch Rodgers throw TDs three times to the stacking option they didn’t use and still win a million dollars. One of the biggest difference makers in the lineup was DeeJay Dallas. Late news on the Seattle RB health situation kept Dallas’s ownership miniscule even at near minimum salary and he became one of the best values on the slate while scoring two TDs. The low prices on Dallas, Davis, Bernard, and the Colts DST allowed them to spend up on Rodgers, Cook, Metcalf and Allen – three of whom and huge days en route to the big win.
$444K Sun NFL Blitz
In the world of high stakes contests on Fanduel, “whodats23” was a big winner of $100K with a score of 187.74 points. Their “double stack and bring one back” build with Russell Wilson, Metcalf, Dallas, and Aiyuk coming back provided some late fireworks from Aiyuk to secure the win. They were fortunate that Dallas got the lion’s share of the workload and that Garoppolo went out late as Mullens was much more successful through the air leading to a huge fourth quarter for Aiyuk in garbage time. On the downside for this lineup, Hunter Henry continues to disappoint every week despite the solid play of Justin Herbert, but he was good enough to win $100K today. Getting single digit owned Cook and Dallas were the real difference makers here in Week 8.
This week the pro spotlight shines on “boggslite” with a top 20 finish in DraftKings NFL $3.5M Fantasy Football Millionaire contest. His “double stack and bring two back” with Mahomes, Hardman, Kelce, Mims, and Perine managed to secure a high finish despite Adam Gase colluding against him in making Frank Gore the lead back in a blowout game in a lost season.
In all, “boggslite” had 120 lineups in the contest. A quick glance at the lineup set seems to show that double stacks were the order of the day with a minimum one bring back – sometimes more. A heavy game stack strategy like that works out well when offences are condensed but when players have singularly huge outings at the expense of their teammates such as Cook, Metcalf, and Adams had, it can leave those builds dead in the water.
Looking through his player exposures, there were some big hits and big misses. Le’Veon Bell was his highest exposure in the set at 41%. Lockett, Kittle, and Golladay were also all in his top 15 exposures that had terrible days. Being well overweight on Bernard, Metcalf, and Miami DST helped to salvage some value though I’m sure.
Congratulations to all the big winners in Week 8 of the 2020 NFL DFS season!