Our Lineup Optimizer is an incredibly powerful tool inside our Player Models, particularly when creating a large number of lineups. However, it’s just that — a tool. We still have to make decisions. Otherwise, everyone would have the same 150 lineups in each contest.
This is intended more as a teaching piece than a step-by-step guide. These rules are suggestions that can show you how to translate your read on this game into lineups.
Additionally, this piece focuses on DraftKings Showdown contests, but similar strategies are useful on FanDuel.
For my general Showdown strategy, you can read my Showdown primer.
My Favorite NFL DFS Angle in Broncos vs. Chargers Showdown
The Broncos are back in Primetime again this week, this time against the Chargers in a divisional matchup. Pricing on this slate makes it interesting for Showdown purposes. Typically, backup RBs in a relative split like the Chargers have are viable options, but DK has priced up both Joshua Kelley and Sony Michel above $6,000. That makes them both essentially unplayable.
This is also objectively a bad matchup for Mike Williams, as the Broncos routinely play two deep safeties with stud corner Pat Surtain shadowing opposing No. 1s. I expect him to come in lower owned than the rest of the high-end options on this slate, making him a pay up to be contrarian option.
Finally, my favorite angle is regarding the Broncos’ WR3 situation. Kendall Hinton began the year in the role before contract oddities made it impossible for him to be elevated from the practice squad before he was signed to the active roster this week. KJ Hamler took over those duties in his place and continues to struggle to earn targets consistently. This isn’t a situation we are likely to get clarity on before lock, but it is the type of situation I like to lean into as we can potentially lock in a player on the field for 60+% of snaps for just $200.
Lineup Optimizer Rules to Consider
- Max 3 players vs. opposing Defense
- Minimum salary cap 90%
- Pair Russell Wilson with at least one Broncos pass catcher
- Pair Justin Herbert with at least two Chargers pass catchers
- I will be making a rule to negatively correlate Latavius Murray in lineups that contain Melvin Gordon, as I expect Murray to essentially run as Gordon’s backup
- I have no problem playing Mike Boone and Melvin Gordon together, as the Chargers have been much weaker against opposing rushing attacks for years now
I’m willing to stretch to a max of three kickers and defenses, though max two is preferred.
- Max 1 of Eric Saubert, Albert Okwuegbunam, Greg Dulcich
- Max 1 of Donald Parham, Tre McKitty
- Max 1 of Kendall Hinton, KJ Hamler
- Max 2 of Latavius Murray, Mike Boone, Melvin Gordon
Captain Pool (from highest to lowest priority)
- Austin Ekeler
- Melvin Gordon
- Courtland Sutton
- Mike Williams
- Jerry Jeudy
- Mike Boone
- Joshua Palmer
Large-Field GPP Fliers
- Russell Wilson
- Justin Herbert
- DeAndre Carter
- Gerald Everett