NFL Contest Selection: Week 1
This article will attempt to bridge the gap between the conservative Man’s Cash Doctrine, and the all in Mass Multi Entry (MME) approach to GPPs. There is a middle ground I call winnable GPPs. They are perfect for the more risk tolerant DFS players. Many GPPs pay out 21-25% of the field, and if you search you can find some that pay out 2X on your entry fee if you place in the outer fringe.
By all means play your cash games and take your shots downfield on a large field GPPs when it fits your situation. But here we will focus on the winnable GPPs that pay 21%-25% of the field and avoid the robotic mass entry sharks. That said; always take a shot downfield. You just never know.
A Word on the Milimakers in Week 1
If you head on over to Draftkings, you will see they are approaching their Milis differently in Week One. The norm is usually a $20 dollar entry. This year we are treated to two flavors full of the stuff that dreams are made of. The $5 version has a ludicrous field of over a million entries. Does it really matter if it’s a 150 max entry contest? If we can take one positive away it’s that over 25% of finishers will take home $8, or 1.6X. The other flavor is a $100 entry with a field of 28K. This is also a 150 max entry and only pays out the top 20% of finishers. 50% of the total prizes go to the top 10 finishers. Ick.
Over on FanDuel you will see they are poised similarly. Their $3 Mili has a field size of well over a million as well. They are paying out almost 26.5% of finishers at 1.67X. Then there is the big boy tourney. The Juggernaut is a 30 max entry that costs a cool $3300 to take part in. The field size is 1000 and pays out 21% of finishers. Every Pro on the planet and some on other planets will be entered into this one. Maybe ask your rich uncle for the cash. You just never know. With such a small field of 1k, I hope a little shark eats the big sharks. Disclaimer: no real sharks will be harmed on Sunday. J
So let’s face it, it’s week one, and these are horrible contests, but we will all be in them. My advice is to pop 10 or 20 entries into the $5 and the $3 and get it out of your system! Now let’s move on to some winnable stuff.
NFL Week 1- DK
NFL 10K Nickel $5 – The contest falls in the old sweet spot. It’s a 3 max entry with a field size of only 2378. It pays out just under 23% of finishers and min cash is 2X. 1st place receives 10%. The top prize is 1K and you have three shots at it. There is a larger version of the Nickel as well, but it is 5 times the field.
NFL $75K Red Zone $50 – Over the course of the year there will be several versions of the Red Zone on DK. The only constant is they will be single entry contests. Some will profile better than others. My brain always gravitates to the smaller field versions, but you can certainly look at the others on any given week. The 75K version in Week One has a field size of 1704 and pays out just a smidge under 23% of finishers. Min cash is set to 2X and the top 10 finishers only get 26% of the total prize money. Top prize is $7500. This is a very balanced and winnable tournament. I’ll leave the light on for ya.
NFL Week 1- FD
$40K Sun NFL Pooch Punt $0.05 – This is one of the more interesting tournaments on the planet and one that can be really fun. It is indeed practice for MME. The Pooch Punt is a nickel and is a 150 max entry contest. So here is the math. 150x.05=7.50. That’s right, so for fewer than 10 bucks you can use your favorite optimizer and crank out 150 lineups and see if MME suits you. Max prize is a cool 2K and a whopping 30% of the field will double their money to a dime. The top 10 only gets 10% of the total purse. The downside? The field size is a whopping 958,083! So if you want to test the MME waters here ya go. If you want play something a little more winnable, keep reading.
$100K Sun NFL Sweep $25 – The Sweep is one of FanDuel’s most popular tournaments, and for good reason. It’s a single entry and the top prize is 10K. The top ten only receives 23% of the total prizes, so we are not close to being top heavy. Slightly more than 25% of finishers will 2X their initial layout. Not too shabby! The field size is a manageable 4705. Let’s go!
So there you have it. Many of us will be holding back a bit and watching how the defenses play, how offensive lines respond, and getting an overall feel for how the studs look. Go ahead and pop some entries in the milis and have fun with week one in the NFL. It’s a long season, and it’s not until week 4-5 that we can really start to nail our plays. As always a shout out to Mans CGA! Let me tell you it’s not just for cash games. It’s analysis at its best. The dude does not sleep during NFL season.
If you missed the contest primer it lives below.
Good luck in Week 1…Peace, and as always, stay safe out there.