Sunday, Feb 12th — Late
Bye Week:
49ers
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Bengals
Bills
Broncos
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Buccaneers
Cardinals
Chargers
Colts
Commanders
Cowboys
Dolphins
Falcons
Giants
Jaguars
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Packers
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Late Swap 16.22

StatATL is an OWS Fam grad who had multiple tournament wins last season that included a large field showdown for MNF and a $50,000 SE win. This season Billy has been hammering short slates and utilizing late swap. In this article, he’ll help you take advantage of late swap.

Need more late swap education? Read this free educational article on Late Swap

Quick overall thoughts:
  • The main decision point of the slate comes in the early game around Tyreek Hill. Pricing seems on the loose side and rostering Hill doesn’t hamper the ability to build ‘comfortable feeling’ rosters. As a result, Hill should carry the highest overall ownership, and while he is the most dynamic player, there is always merit for a fade if building around a different game script.
  • I would expect around 75% of the total QB ownership to condense on Tua, Brady, and Rodgers, and with two of them playing in the first game, this should provide ample direction on what makes the most sense from a game theory perspective based on how that game plays out.
  •  On a normal Sunday slate, the Broncos at Rams, with an implied game total of only 36 would likely be a game we mostly avoided. 
Let’s Dive In:

What I like about Sunday’s slate is that the most dynamic game is first. While this game will likely be the most owned game due to its perceived “fantasy goodness”, it has many tributaries on how it can play out on a one-game sample size. Players who are willing to embrace some uncertainty and leverage late swap will likely be at a competitive advantage.

On a small slate, like this upcoming three gamer for Sunday, one of the biggest mistakes our competition will make in terms of roster construction will be thinking about certainty or safety (what’s likeliest to happen) first and building around that. It’s essential to remember that on a one-week sample size, things will likely play out differently, and embracing uncertainty is advantageous.

I want to once again emphasize the importance of capturing the players who put up 20+ point scores, as there may only be a few of them on the entire slate. As always, we are not just picking players we like, but are constructing a roster that works together. With that in mind, below are some key skill position players from each team with their top scores thus far this season. This is a good measuring stick of who is and likely isn’t capable of a had-to-have-it score as well as which players most consistently return 3x their salary.

For reference of how important capturing a 20-point score is, excluding QBs, there are only 6 skill position players across all 6 teams that have three or more games all season eclipsing the 20 point ceiling, and all come from the Dolphins, Packers and Cardinals(!!):

Late Swap / Roster Construction Theory:
  • Focus on two games on each roster, with only 1 player from the other game. I think a common mistake is trying to get multiple skill position players from each game on every roster, and while it is viable, I believe the percentage of rosters built that way far exceeds the likelihood of that construction being optimal.
  • As mentioned above in the quick thoughts, I would expect most rosters to feature builds revolving around either the Packers, Dolphins, or Bucs. Tua with Hill, Rodgers with Watson, and Brady with Godwin should all be highly owned stacks. While these all make sense, what if the touchdowns come on the ground or through secondary receivers?
  • Most people will not build a full game stack, however, a QB, RB, WR (or two WR) from one team with a bring back (or two) is generally an underplayed strategy on short slates.
  • Correlation is even more important on a short slate. When building each roster, make sure you’re accounting for all 3 of the games, and what specific scenario or game script each construction means for the individual games.
  • If you build in a way that has most of the scoring from the early game coming on the ground (for example, you roster Jones and Mostert) and you’re wrong, you should consider swapping away from Brady stacks as your roster is likely way behind and you can’t ride up with the chalk as too much of the field will have the same plays.
  • Remember that once we get to the final game, salary doesn’t matter anymore, and decisions should be made based on current standing – If you’re ahead, block popular plays. If behind, swap to lower-owned plays to try and make up ground. If possible, I’d recommend having at least two skill position players from the final game to allow for a late swap.

Going into the late game, a few salary combinations are below for consideration:
Highest owned pair:
Brady + Godwin ($13,000)
If behind, consider:
Brady + Hollywood Brown ($11,500)

Highest Owned Late Game Trio:
Brady + Godwin + Evans ($19,200)
If behind, consider:
Brady + Evans + Fournette ($18,100)

Defense:

With the news coming early of Colt McCoy being ruled out, I fully expect the Bucs Defense to be the highest owned by a wide margin. The most likely game script has the Cardinals falling behind and having to pass with their 3rd string QB making his first start. We have seen the Buccaneers offense struggle for most of the season, however, so a game where the Cardinals keep it close by pounding the rock with Conner is certainly a reasonable tributary on how that game may play out. As we know, defensive scoring is hard to predict, and simply embracing variance when it comes to DST can be a profitable strategy, especially on a short slate like Sunday, where I expect more than 50% of the ownership to congregate on the Bucs and Broncos.

I hope to see you and your OWS avatar at the top of a leaderboard come Sunday night.