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Underdog Underowned 16.22

Lex is a matchup researcher who focuses his play on Underdog’s Battle Royale contest.

The goal of this article is to present you with information and strategy about a different-style DFS tournament that is not currently as strategically optimized as traditional DFS due to its infancy as a contest style. Due to Underdog’s main customer base of Best Ball players, there are many people approaching this tournament in a suboptimal way. So let’s take advantage!

Brief Review of Previous Data

This section will just be to track some top-five lineup trends that may help you in constructing your roster.

  • In 20/33 weeks, there have been at least four QB-teammate stacks in the top-five rosters (14 of 20 were QB-WR)
  • 2022 QBs in top-five (stacked/total): Joe Burrow (12/13) // Justin Fields (4/12) // Jalen Hurts (9/12) // Lamar Jackson (9/10) // Josh Allen (5/9) // Patrick Mahomes (8/9) // Justin Herbert (2/3) // Tua Tagovailoa (2/2) // Jared Goff (2/2) // Kyler Murray (1/1) // Mike White (1/1) // Trevor Lawrence (1/1) // Geno Smith (0/1)
  • Of the 75 QBs on a top-five roster in 2022, 54 have scored four-plus touchdowns, and most of the rest did heavy scoring on the ground
  • Of the 155 top-five rosters, 118 have had two RBs (71.5%)
    • This means a 1-2-2-1 roster construction
  • Mark Andrews has made a top-five roster in 12-of-25 weeks he has been on the slate, and Travis Kelce has made a top-five roster in 12-of-23 weeks he has been on the slate
  • In 2022, 11-of-15 weeks have had a single WR or RB make all five top-five rosters

Week 15 Top-Five Rosters: Score // Roster // ADP

Looking at Week 16
Quarterbacks:

Notable QBs missing from this slate: Jalen Hurts, Justin Herbert, Trevor Lawrence, Tua Tagovailoa, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson(?), Tom Brady, Russ Wilson, Kyler Murray, Matthew Stafford

  • Top-six ADP concerns: Josh Allen with extreme snow weather, Burrow vs a New England team strong against touchdowns, Fields with extreme snow weather vs. a solid defense
  • Mahomes / Geno and Cousins / Daniel Jones are playing in the two outlier high total games; Kansas City is favored by 10, Minnesota is favored by fuor
    • Mahomes is the only one of them not going in the last round (ADP)

QBs with upside outside the top-6 drafted:

  • Daniel Jones: Minnesota has allowed the sixth most fantasy points to QBs, including ground success to the likes of Hurts, Fields, Kyler, Allen. Jones has multiple scores over 25+ fantasy points, and has rushed for the fifth most yards of any QB (41.6/g). This game carries the second highest total on the slate, and Jones could conceivably outscore Cousins on the other side even with a big game from a Minnesota skill player or two.
Running Backs:

Notable RBs missing from this slate: Kenneth Walker(?), Jonathan Taylor, Aaron Jones, Travis Etienne, Josh Jacobs, Najee Harris, James Conner, Austin Ekeler

RBs with upside outside the top-6 drafted:
Isiah Pacheco: Kansas City is implied for 29.5 points at home as a 10-point favorite, playing a defense allowing the second most fantasy points to RBs. Pacheco has averaged 15.8 rush attempts in the last six games, with a range of 13-22. Even in a game last week in which he fumbled and was briefly benched, he reached 16 touches. With his scoring almost assuredly going to come on the ground, he is one way to get leverage off Mahomes and the fifth highest RB by ADP, Jerick McKinnon.

D’Andre Swift: Carolina has allowed some big RB days this season. Swift’s usage has been a question mark all year, but he’s currently off the injury report and is clearly a more explosive player than his touchdown-vulture teammate Jamaal Williams. Swift has 20+ point upside on a motivated team, and can be successful in different game scripts.
Wide Receivers:

Notable WRs missing from this slate: Davante Adams, Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle, Garrett Wilson, Mike Williams, Keenan Allen, Diontae Johnson, Chris Olave, Tyler Lockett, Michael Pittman, Christian Watson, Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, Cooper Kupp

Positive Notes:

  • Justin Jefferson: Elite WR matchup for 2022’s current WR1; Players around him with questions: Henry (Willis), CMC (knee), Allen (weather), Diggs (weather), Chase (matchup); extremely thin depth at WR on slate
  • Amon-Ra St. Brown: Carolina has allowed fourth most WR receptions; 8-12 targets in every healthy game this season
  • DK Metcalf: Kansas City has allowed fifth most WR fantasy points; no Lockett; opposite elite offense
  • Brandin Cooks: Tennessee has allowed most WR fantasy points and is very tough vs. run; no Nico Collins
  • Curtis Samuel: San Francisco secondary weakest against slot, which is where Samuel primarily plays; SF has faced seventh most pass attempts
Tight Ends:

Notable TEs missing from this slate: Pat Freiermuth, Darren Waller, Evan Engram, Gerald Everett, Robert Tonyan, Tyler Higbee, Mike Gesicki, Zach Ertz, Kyle Pitts

  • Jefferson may have more value than Kelce this week due to their respective ceilings and the week’s depth at their respective positions, but they are my top two targets of the week
  • As said before, If Kelce disappoints, likely a strong game from another Chief; McKinnon has popped two straight weeks while JuJu and Pacheco have been mildly productive; Pacheco is going undrafted now, but the game could certainly play out with him scoring the touchdowns that McKinnon scored last week
  • Andrews has tumbled down the ranks due to lack of productivity, but he has his best matchup in weeks and still carries elite ceiling for the position
  • Kittle has shot up to No. 2 this week after his blowup, but he is usually a fade for me at higher ADP due to his lack of volume and reliance on long scores; that being said, WR depth is weak, Deebo still out, and Purdy hasn’t been as good as Jimmy G at finding Aiyuk
  • Quick notes on some TEs past top trio:
    • T.J. Hockenson: “Always one Viking,” strong target expectation
    • Dawson Knox: Production up (15 targets last two games), plus-matchup
    • Taysom Hill: Weather favors ground game; usage up recently
    • Dallas Goedert: Upside; even with backup QB, a strong offense
Underowned Combos:
  • Cousins + 2
  • D Jones + Dalvin + (Jefferson / Hockenson) + (Slayton)
  • Geno + Metcalf + Walker / Fant + (Chief)
  • Darnold + Moore + St. Brown / Swift
  • Lamar + Andrews
  • Henry + Cooks
  • Chubb + Taysom

Hope this helps you get started with the contest and ship that first place! Good luck everyone!