Fading the Chalk: Has NFL DFS Passed Me By?

I’m a restaurant manager that works crazy hours and uses DFS as a way to escape from the stress that comes with my job. I’m certainly not a pro, but I have been a profitable player over the past few years, and getting up early to blog about my process is one of the best ways that I have found to fight depression and anxiety. If you’d like to talk about barbecue, sports, or life in general, hit me up on Twitter: @EasyMoneySelby.

After spending another Sunday sitting through “seven hours of commercial-free football” on the RedZone Channel, I was left with the same empty feeling that I seem to have every week when my lineup fails to live up to expectations.

I went out of my way to avoid guys that were likely to bust, but I still ended up with quite a few of them. And that has me wondering if maybe the NFL DFS game has simply passed me by this year.

On the bright side, my Achilles recover is moving right along and I’m sitting up with both feet on the floor as I write this, so that’s a huge win regardless of where my FanDuel balance is sitting.

My Lineup: The Chalky McChalk All-Stars

After sitting on the couch all weekend and listening to most of the RG podcasts, I had what felt like a solid plan going into my Sunday morning roster construction.

I knew that I wanted to pair up Christian McCaffrey and Ezekiel Elliot as my workhorse backs with Jaylen Samuels as my discount RB in the flex spot. Then I wanted to pay up for a still-too-cheap Travis Kelce and also find a way to fit Aaron Rodgers in what should have been a big F-U game for him.

In order to make all of that fit, I was going to have to go super cheap at WR. Fortunately, guys like Courtland Sutton, Sterling Shepard, and Chris Godwin were sitting right there waiting for me.

Then I finished with the Chargers D because they were a huge home favorite.

Now let me double back for a minute and talk about the guys that I wanted to avoid.

I believe that story from a few weeks ago about the Giants avoiding giving Odell Beckham Jr. and Saquon Barkley the ball in the second half, so I was off of Barkley.

Then I didn’t want to play anyone in the soggy Tampa rain game, so I stayed away from Jameis Winston and Alvin Kamara, although I did spring for “(player-popup #chris-godwin)Chris Godwin”:/players/chris-godwin-37002…but he was just too cheap.

The Expert Lineups

Despite rostering Chris Godwin, Booourns had a big day by pairing Saquon Barkley and Ezekiel Elliott with Jaylen Samuels. That’s not far from what I started with, but he was willing to go cheap at TE with Cameron Brate, which freed up enough salary to get up to Michael Thomas and JuJu Smith-Schuster. And don’t forget that Giants D!

Hoop2410 had a similar build, but he went with Keenan Allen and Sterling Shepard instead of Michael Thomas and Chris Godwin. Combine that with stepping down to Lamar Jackson and the Browns D and he was able to move up to Eric Ebron at TE.

Awesemo went cheaper at RB by stepping down from Ezekiel Elliot to Austin Ekeler. That gave him the extra salary needed to get up to Ben Roethlisberger, who put up a solid game despite sitting out for most of the second half.

I’m going to include one more lineup here just because CSURAM88 was able to cash in this big time tournament despite taking a 4.5 from Justin Jackson and a light day from DeAndre Hopkins. The key is that he nailed everything else.

The Big Takeaway

Once again, I wasn’t far off from the guys that cashed in the big money contests. But I also didn’t have the key guys that set them over the edge. None of those experts paid up for Travis Kelce against the Ravens Defense, and they all spent more money on WRs that I did.

I was also out on an island with Aaron Rodgers and the Chargers D. I also didn’t pair any pass catchers with my QB, or any RBs with my defense.

Fortunately, we are back on that NBA grind with a nice big 11-game slate to tackle. Let’s get to work on that research and I’ll likely see you back here tomorrow with another edition of Fading the Chalk.

Did you play the NFL slate yesterday? How did you do? Did you fall into the traps of playing guys who didn’t produce? Or did you crush and find yourself up at the top of your contests? Either way, leave a comment and let me know what went into your process!

About the Author

  • Andrew Selby (AndyBowsers)

  • Andy is a restaurant manager that fell head-over-heels in love with the DFS world from the minute he opened his FanDuel account back in early 2015. Since he is also an accomplished freelance writer, it was only a matter of time before those two worlds collided. He currently writes a daily blog called Fading the Chalk where he breaks down his own lineup decisions along with the lineups of some the best in the business.

  • ridgerunner

    slightly different lineup, same result

  • Potsmoke

    Rough day to cash the bigger tourneys yesterday without kittle and cooper. Also, WTH happened to yahoo? Next week they are having a $1,000,000, 10 entry max tourney. $20 entry

  • SportsLover37

    I was glad to have Cooper in my line and cashed my GPPs and cash games, even with Baker as my qb. I did play Pettis tho, realize now how Denver couldn’t cover tight ends… glad your recovery is doing well now

  • Oldschool92

    I had Julio and went with Ertz and Kelce hoping for a different lineup and ended 133. Jaylen and Jackson and got to pay up for Mahomes. Feel better this week though as the process was much better despite the results.

  • maaron83

    What’s the buy in on that 83 position tournament the experts are in?

  • sshaheed

    I took down the $30 Single Entry Series tourney this week. Paying up for Saquan and CMC with the Giants D as a stack worked well. Getting off the Sutton chalk to go to D. Hamilton. With no Zeke in my lineup going to Cooper made since. Paired Ben with Juju and Jaylen for value, ran it back with Cook and boom, big week.

  • AndyBowsers

    • Blogger of the Month

    @maaron83 said...

    What’s the buy in on that 83 position tournament the experts are in?

    I get them all confused, but somewhere mid four figures. like $5300 or $6300. Actually…might be like $3500. Hell I don’t know.

  • noisemaker

    I am almost positive I used that same lineup at least once last week, or at least something 90% close. It seems to come down to lineup construction. You see how the experts fit in two stud RBs and two stud WRs? Sometimes you see these lineups and you wonder how they fit it all in there. I think spending time on the lineup is important. Also, pay down at defense (volatile) and QB (tight pricing with high floors). You do notice a trend with expert lineups as well. They pay up for the right players and all found their way to be confident in the same players (e.g. JuJu/Thomas). Narrow player pool containing confident plays is also important. Certain reasons they were all on those players, whether it be a pivot (Kamara to Thomas) or knowledge (OAK shuts down #1 WRs and can be more susceptible in the slot — JuJu).

  • squidkill

    I would compare Adam Levitan;s lineup each week- He’s one of the BEST cash game players out there. Miles ahead of CSURAM Also- I never pay-up for a defense- You can always snap a defense for 2100-2500

    either way same as you my WR did not hit- everything else did.

  • hautalak

    • x2

      2021 Blogger of the Month

    @sshaheed said...

    I took down the $30 Single Entry Series tourney this week. Paying up for Saquan and CMC with the Giants D as a stack worked well. Getting off the Sutton chalk to go to D. Hamilton. With no Zeke in my lineup going to Cooper made since. Paired Ben with Juju and Jaylen for value, ran it back with Cook and boom, big week.

    Nice hit! That’s how you make a lineup using logical decisions. Congrats you earned it.

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