Interview with ctoujague - Winner of the DraftKings Week 3 Milly Maker


You know what’s better than winning 1st place in the Milly Maker? Winning 1st place, 2nd place, AND 3rd place! That is exactly what RotoGrinders subscriber ctoujague did this past Sunday in the DraftKings NFL $3.5M Fantasy Football Millionaire contest. Talk about a podium finish! And just for good measure, ctoujague went ahead and took 5th place too.

The person behind one of the most dominant DFS performances in recent memory, Chad Toujague, was kind enough to answer some questions for us regarding his legendary weekend, personal life, DFS process, and more!

Tell us a bit about yourself. Where you are from, your job, family, etc.

Thanks for the time, Andy. My name is Chad. I actually used to be an anesthetist and put folks to sleep for a living, but now I work for an amazing Family Office that focuses on social impact and creating access to underserved demographics. These days I live really close to my family in Florida. We have a pretty relaxing life – lots of sports and outdoorsy type stuff.

How did you get started in DFS? Did you have success right away?

Actually yes! I remember when I was doing clinicals, about 9 or 10 years ago, I read about this guy Allen Hurns who was doing really well in camp. I think he had 2 touchdowns or something similar – I cashed my first week! Since then, however, it’s been a little bit of a hobby with mercurial outcomes, for sure.

How long have you been a RotoGrinders subscriber? Are there any particular tools or pieces of Premium Content on RotoGrinders that you rely on when doing your research?

I have been a RotoGrinders subscriber for a little over two weeks! I use ALL of the content I can from RotoGrinders. This is not a plug – it is actual fact. I consumed all the content that I could. The content that RG puts out is very good. It also is not unilateral – there’s a lot of varying perspectives that contribute thoughtful analysis.

Do you use LineupHQ when building lineups? If so, can you elaborate a little bit on your process? How much did you tinker/adjust the settings and projections in LineupHQ?

I did! Actually, I have always used a proprietary algorithm for determining what I think are key matchups. The problem is, I did not have the same sort of Monte-Carlo simulator or linear regression capabilities independently. To get one where it was curated to my specific preferences would have taken a huge investment of time. Recently, I have been invested heavily in machine learning and python, so I thought I could get a good simulator, with historic data imported in a few weeks. Turns out I had a great one in just a couple minutes with LineupHQ. While obviously LineupHQ does not provide the same customization as your own personal models may, it really is a good one-stop-shop if you know exactly what you’re looking for. My process is usually very thorough for selecting my matchups and stacks, etc. – which makes DFS less enjoyable when entering in the tournaments. LineupHQ probably cut my build time by 60%.

Tell us about your week leading up to Sunday. Did you feel good about the lineups you entered? Did you do anything differently than your normal process?

This week, I went through my normal progressions, vetting out the games and matchups. Nothing out of the ordinary – I did the same thing last week and lost around 85% of my lineups. This week, I did pivot a bit farther from high-ceiling QBs than I normally do. I also had a heavy conviction that the Bills defense was grossly undervalued against the Commanders. Locking in the Bills and a bunch of Sam LaPorta was more of a recognition of them being undervalued by DK, which are things I love to look for.


What was the biggest sweat down the stretch of the late afternoon games? Is there one specific play you remember that made you think you were actually going to take down the Milly Maker?

The Colts game stressed me out. Michael Pittman was severely under-targeted in his matchups. Even the 4 PM games, I did not feel very confident. Kenneth Walker looked incredible in the first half but was heavily under-used compared to Zach Charbonnet. Adam Thielen came out a little hot and then cooled down towards halftime, when DJ Chark was getting a lot of love. When Walker scored his first TD, I really thought there was a chance to take it down. My wonderful girlfriend did remind me that, if it was too stressful, we can watch the Chiefs game for Taylor Swift content.

What happened with the duplicated lineup that resulted in you winning 1st AND 2nd place?

RotoGrinders projections really liked Joshua Kelley this week and Nico Collins. I couldn’t afford Collins there and did not like Kelley’s projected ownership. So I opted to try and upgrade to Walker and rearrange a lot of my lineups for Thielen and Tank Dell. I think the dupe just happened to be replacing most of my Kelley, Josh Reynolds, and Collins exposure to Walker and Thielen.

Do you have any suggestions for casual players who are trying to make better lineups and win these massive top-heavy DFS contests?

Personally, I much prefer tournaments that are single-entry or 3-max. I feel as though a casual player may not see great success in the large-field, multi-entry GPPs because of small nuances to lineups. The small nuances are actually hours of deliberation, along with a little help from machine-based lineup optimizers. It is very fun though to have a single lineup in a large, multi-entry GPP.

How does winning this tournament change your life moving forward? Any big purchases planned with the recent winnings?

No big plans. Life will chug along as usual – possibly just clear up student loans for the family (really a blessing) and pay taxes.

Image Credit: Getty Images

About the Author

Andy Means (meansy53)

Andy Means (aka meansy53) was a walk-on with the esteemed Duke University basketball team for 3 years before graduating in 2004. He also has a Master’s in Accounting from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business and has been playing DFS since 2014. He has qualified for multiple Live Finals and displays his extensive basketball knowledge as a host of our top show – NBA Crunch Time. In the summer of 2022, Andy took over the role of Premium Content Director for the RotoGrinders Network, overseeing the vast array of content that is created on RotoGrinders, ScoresAndOdds, and FantasyLabs. Follow Andy on Twitter – @ameansy
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