Thursday, Sep 5th
Monday, Sep 9th

Willing To Lose 17.23

Larejo is a mid-stakes tournament mastermind who specializes in outmaneuvering 150-max players with a small number of entries

“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong.” – Peter McIntyre

It’s perfectly natural to feel overwhelmed by this week’s 13-game main slate. Overwhelmed leads to overthinking and overthinking drives a lack of confidence. Think about it, when you aren’t able to get a comfortable sense of the variables around you, you feel small. You feel indecisive and you look for ways to justify decisions. I can’t help but think of how important confidence is for Week 17. Fighting the urge to ignore the games and players you aren’t playing, and focusing on those you do have in your lineups will be the key to success this Sunday.

Famed New Zealand painter Peter McIntyre’s quote above serves as a perfect theme to our lineups this week. If we build our lineups with the belief that we will be right instead of the fear of being wrong, we can guarantee we deploy some very confident lineups. Whether you’ve won or lost this season thus far, it’s important to maintain confidence heading into the final weeks of the NFL season for a few reasons. First, because OWS has worked hard to train you to think in a confident fashion and to build those first-place lineups, and second, because even if you’ve played all of the main slates and showdowns this season, you’re still seeing a small sample size of around 50 slates for extremely thin variance to be your friend. 

In full disclosure, I fit more into the losing category than winning this season. I’ve seen profit on my entries around 12-15 times over the course of 49 slates, but without any top 1% places, I’m net-negative on the season. I don’t know about you, but I’m still as confident as any DFS player at 12:59pm US EST every Sunday believing that my lineups will be right. Some of this is due to past success, but most of it is due to sticking to my process and trying to build through my words here on OWS each season. I also know the nature of my play, in not risking much on any given slate with the minute chance of seeing extreme profits maybe once or twice a season. I’m not in control over the luck that plays into some DFS outcomes, but I know that by controlling my process, I’m keeping one constant: my approach. 

Confidence is vital this week. So many of us will focus on where we could lose by not having exposure. No matter your entry amounts, though, you can’t cover every square. Part of being willing to lose means owning your psyche as you look to take down a tournament on the next slate. Build lineups like nobody will judge you! (spoiler alert: they won’t!). And as always, lean into your confidence in justifying why your lineups can be really right this week . . . 

Game stacking when it’s least expected

The great element of a large slate is the likelihood that ownership will be more spread out than usual. But as chalk will always form, it makes leverage on the ownership even more powerful this week. Translation: we can get blocks of players for less than one or two percent combinatorial ownership on this slate. That’s just simply fun, in my opinion. But the real fun in this is that we don’t have to get crazy to do this. For instance, as we look at some of the potential games that could be a shootout and the offenses that could put up north of 30 points, the few that fit this mold will be where most DFS players start this week (Chiefs, Eagles, Bills, 49ers). Further, on a massive slate with 26 teams to choose from, there may not be a better week to hone in on a few games to get right, that could rise above the rest. And what games are better to pick here than the fourth and eighth-highest Vegas totals on the slate: Bucs at Saints and Titans at Texans.

My favorite way to get exposure to a cheap player block in a game that could explode is when you don’t have to make any outrageous bets in doing so. Said differently, when salaries are relatively low and we know where the volume should go, you can build comfortable game stacks primed to win tournaments if we get the environment we need. The Bucs and Saints are my favorite game in this category this week. On the Saints side, we have the offense flowing through Kamara, Olave, and Shaheed, with Taysom likely mixing in. For the Bucs, it’s all about White, Evans, and Godwin. Condensity, check! These two teams are also alive and well to win the NFC South, meaning motivation to continue to pile up points should be there. The only element holding this game back should be Derek Carr or Baker Mayfield, but at least Mayfield has been relatively solid lately (QB13 or better in each of the last three weeks with nine TDs and zero INTs). Carr’s price is so low you can barely find him on DK ($5,500) and just put up his best fantasy performance of the season in catch-up mode at the Rams. Stacking up Carr, Kamara, Olave, and Shaheed, alongside White and Godwin (even down Lattimore, the Saints are Mike Evans’ kryptonite) fills out six roster spots (wild to most!) with a remaining salary of $11,900 on DK for defense, tight end, and a flex. Unless you read this and deploy it as well, I am confident in saying I’ll be the only lineup in every tournament I enter to start this way.

Titans and Texans

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