NFL Daily Fantasy Football: DraftKings Week 1 Outlook


The greatest time of year is nearly upon us. Season long fantasy football drafts are now gearing up and DraftKings has posted salaries for Week 1 of the NFL season. I will be covering NFL DFS (Daily Fantasy Sports) for Detroit Sports Nation all season including giving my OPTIMAL LINEUP each Saturday for the Sunday slates which have the largest payouts. With $1M on the line each week for only $20 it is hard not to get involved. I also have dabbled a bit with FanDuel, but I like to keep my focus on just one site.

Week 1 has 13 games. At first look, the salaries are a bit soft. DraftKings will make adjustments as the season goes along, but they tend to make lineup building easier in the beginning. I much prefer tighter pricing, but we have to work with what they give us. My goal in building a lineup is to win GPP’s (Guaranteed Prize Pool Tournaments). I rarely play cash games where people only double their money. I do not do this for a living. I am a recreational player who is always going after the big score. The odds of winning a big tournament are very, very long, especially when your one lineup is battling against players covering as many bases as possible with the 150 max lineups. I tend to back up my main lineup in the big payout tournaments with placement in single entry events and less than 100 player tournament.

Ownership percentage is very meaningful. You want to have lower owned players who go off for big points. Playing the chalk is a cash game strategy. I am looking for a diverse lineup that is unique and has high upside. I also love pairing up the QB and WR or TE, from the same team, in my lineup. It is a huge bonus if you can get the right combination.

I have listed out my top four plays, at the moment, for each position. It is listed out by player, salary, and the ranking of the opponent, against that position, from 2016. All details are found on the DraftKings website. I have also included the top Lions players at each position. If a Lions player is not listed, they are at the minimum salary. Right now, I can’t see playing any Lions against a stingy Arizona defense, but things can certainly change as some players have very good value, especially the WR’s, as Arizona was 28th in the league in DraftKings points given up.

For my optimal lineup, I went with the Roethlisberger/Brown combination. I love the spot they are in and think they have 60 plus point potential. I was not very fond of the high priced RBs so I went for value with Blount and Gore who can still easily get double digits. At WR, I added Crabtree who is the cheaper Oakland option, and Baldwin who always seems underrated against a porous Packers defense. At TE, I went with one of my favorite DFS players Walker. He is the main target in the offense and can put up arcade like numbers. I added another TE for my Flex sport going with the Eagles’ Ertz who while risky at times, has huge upside in this match up. Finally, I took the Texans defense. The Bills are in the best spot for sure, but I wanted to diversify and go with the lower owned team who has the same ceiling. I plan to re-look at these picks after the 3rd pre-season game is completed for each team.