Week 14 DraftKings Monday Night Football Showdown: Arizona Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Rams | Fantasy Football News, Leaderboards and Projections
The change DFS and Fantasy soccer ball The landscape is shifting towards single-game competitions. At DraftKings Sportsbook, the Showdown Captain Mode format is the biggest. The format combines the ease of focusing on a single game with the ability to differentiate yourself from the competition by selecting six players.
The main disadvantage of the format is the ability to choose a captain (CPT), which costs 1.5 times the standard values and is rated. The CPT designation opens up another level of strategy while increasing the number of possible line-up combinations exponentially, which is important to reduce double winners and split prizes. I wrote a primer to play this format, with details on historical position trends and salary usage.
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This season, I’ll be analyzing all of the NFL’s “island” games (TNF, SNF, and MNF) and playoff matches, using PFF’s weekly forecasts, current betting lines, and millions of simulated historical combinations to determine the best and worst values for to identify an upcoming match.
The week 14 showdown slate analysis has five main components, which you can find below:
1. A methodological breakdown and the closest historical matchup to the Arizona Cardinals – Los Angeles Rams illustrating the matching process: 2016 Week 14 Dallas Cowboys – New York Giants, with Dak Prescott as Kyler Murray and Eli Manning as Matthew Stafford.
2. Optimal line-up assignments (CPT and overall line-up) for both teams based on the results of similar historical encounters.
3. Comparison of FLEX and CPT player ownership projections made from a model trained on the results of the 2018-2020 Showdown competition with optimal assignments.
4th Current CPT ownership trends shown for both starting lineups.
5. A table with the most frequent players in the optimal line-ups for each player. This way you can see which other players are often in the same optimal lineups as a player you are interested in.
To analyze this particular showdown list, I went through thousands of NFL matches from 2014 to 2021 and found the closest analogies to that competition according to the following parameters: Spread, Over / Under, and Average Fantasy Point Scoring for the top ranked positional players both duty rosters (QB1, RB1, WR1, TE1).
I won’t detail every matchup that falls into the top 100 in this game, but for an illustration let’s look at the most similar matchup:
|Dak Prescott||QB||FROM||Kyler Murray||QB||ARI|
|Ezekiel Elliott||RB||FROM||James Conner||RB||ARI|
|ten bryant||WR||FROM||DeAndre Hopkins||WR||ARI|
|Jason Witten||AT THE||FROM||Zach Ertz||AT THE||ARI|
|Eli Manning||QB||NYG||Matthew Stafford||QB||LAR|
|Rashad Jennings||RB||NYG||Sony Michel||RB||LAR|
|Odell Beckham Jr.||WR||NYG||Cooper Coup||WR||LAR|
|Will Tye||AT THE||NYG||Tyler Higbee||AT THE||LAR|
the distribute and over / under are similar in these matchups (Cowboys -3.5, 47 O / U versus this matchup at Cardinals -2.5, 51.5 O / U). Not all players are perfect matches, but that’s why we use 100 similar matchups rather than just the most similar ones.
The optimal line-up for this historic matchup, assuming that the position salaries match those for this showdown list, would have been:
|player||team||position||Management position||Fantasy points|
|Odell Beckham Jr.||NYG||WR||CPT||19.4|
|Terrance Williams||FROM||WR||TO BEND||18.6|
|Ezekiel Elliott||FROM||RB||TO BEND||13.7|
|Dak Prescott||FROM||QB||TO BEND||8.7|
For this game and 99 other similar matchups, I calculated every possible combination that would fit the showdown rules (one CPT, at least one offensive player from each team) and would fall below the salary threshold of $ 50,000 considering the salaries for the historic Assumes similar matchups are the same as for this competition.
SELECTION OF THE RIGHT CAPTAIN
The most unique part of the format, and therefore the greatest opportunity for competitive advantage, is the choice of your CPT. Should you always choose a QB who usually has the highest absolute fantasy rating? Are defenses and table football viable options? RB versus WR?
I went through the millions of possible line-up combinations for the 100 most similar matchups and found who the CPT pick was in the top 5 scoring line-ups for each match. Here are the 500 CPT selections from these matchups by position rank and salary.
UNLOCKING THE OVERALL OPTIMAL ROSTERS
This graph illustrates the full range of assignments for the various positions to measure how many of the 500 optimal rosters had exactly zero, one or two of the positions indicated.
the Box plot above shows the ranges for CPT ownership for each starting player in competitions since 2019.
Probable possession versus optimal
This is where the analysis comes together and becomes actionable. The most important thing when looking at these numbers is to contrast them with the optimal numbers from the above analysis for different positions. Then we see where the leverage can be.
The following two tables compare the above optimal assignments with adjustments for the staff of this particular game in order to our property forecasts for CPT and FLEX.
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