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 Patriots vs. Vikings Showdown
It’s an interesting matchup to end the Thanksgiving slate with two teams that appear to take away each other’s strengths on paper. I sort of favor a game script that has the Patriots playing from ahead, especially after we saw the Vikings’ offensive line struggle mightily after stud LT Christian Darrisaw went down. Kirk Cousins was sacked 7 times and now faces a Patriots defense that ranks first in the league in pressure rate.
On the other side, the Vikings have actually been decent against the run allowing just 4.4 yards per carry and ranking 13th in DVOA. They have been much more susceptible through the air, but we have seen Mac Jones and the offense be completely incapable of getting things done.
Overall, with this much uncertainty with the matchup, I want lean into it by being overweight on lower owned outcomes.
Currently, I suspect that will be Dalvin Cook for the Vikings combined with Patriots pass-catchers.
Lineup Optimizer Rules to Consider
- Max 3 players vs. opposing Defense
- Minimum salary cap 90%
- Pair Captain Mac Jones with at least two Patriots pass-catchers
- Pair Captain Kirk Cousins with at least two Vikings pass-catchers
- Max one of Patriots pass-catchers in lineups with both NE running backs
- Max of 2 Patriots pass-catchers in lineups without Mac Jones
- Decrease Mac Jones by 15% in lineups with both NE running backs
- Increase Patriots Defense by 10% in lineups with both NE running backs
- Pair Captain pass-catchers with at most one other pass-catcher from the same team
- Max two kickers and defenses.
- Max two Patriots WR regardless of build
Captain Pool (from highest to lowest priority)
- Rhamondre Stevenson
- Justin Jefferson
- Dalvin Cook
- Jakobi Meyers
Large-Field GPP Fliers
- TJ Hockenson
- Damien Harris
- Nick Folk
- Patriots Defense