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DraftKings Showdown Analysis: Week 10 TNF (Steelers/Panthers)

Before you dig into this writeup specifically geared towards this week’s Thursday Night Football matchup between the Steelers and Panthers, you may want to take a look at a few articles that serve as primers for Showdown strategy:

1) A synopsis of the Showdown format and early season results

2) Optimal total roster construction based on historical matchups in different game scripts

3) Optimal Captain (CPT) selections based on historical matchups in different game scripts

Editor’s Note: Be sure to watch Chop and BigT’s video and then use LineupHQ to build optimal lineups for the prime-time game!

Methodology

To analyze this specific Showdown slate, I looked through thousands of NFL matchups from 2008-2017 and found the closest analogies to the PIT-CAR matchup according to the following parameters: Betting spread, over/under, average fantasy points scoring for the top-ranked positional players of both rosters (QB1, RB1, WR1, TE1).

I won’t detail every matchup that falls into the top-100, but for illustration let’s look at the most similar matchup: 2016 Week 10, Steelers-Cowboys.

The spread and over/under are exactly the same as this matchup (Steelers -2.5, 50 O/U versus Steelers -4, 50.5 O/U).

All the players aren’t perfect matches, but that’s why we use 100 similar matchups and not just the single most similar.

For this game and 99 other similar matchups, I calculated every possible combination that fits with Showdown rules (one CPT, at least one offensive player from each team) and would fall under the $50K salary threshold assuming the salaries for the historical similar matchups are the same as those for this contest.

Choosing the right captain

The most unique part of the format, and therefore the biggest opportunity for competitive advantage, is choosing your CPT. Should you always choose a QB who typically has the highest absolute fantasy scoring? Are defenses and kickers viable options? RB vs WR?

I went through the millions of possible lineup combinations for the 100 most similar matchups and found who the CPT selections were on the top-5 scoring lineups for each matchup. Here are the 500 CPT from those matchups by position rank according to salary.

Breaking down total optimal rosters

This graph illustrates the full range of allocations for the different positions to measure how many of the 500 optimal rosters had exactly zero, one or two of the given positions.

Optimal CPT and total rosters side-by-side

The key when looking through this table is to remember that the total roster numbers are much higher than the CPT numbers because the former only means filling one of six slots, and the latter is only one of one CPT slot.

Beyond taking in the number in themselves, what’s also important is comparing these to the historical numbers in the primer articles that give the equivalent figures total roster construction and CPT selections for games in different game scripts.

Optimal stacks

Here are how the team stacking composition worked out for the 100 most similar matchups.

YTD results

The tables below have the YTD results for the top-0.1% entries (“Winners”) and the field in the biggest contests from 2018 NFL Showdown slates.

CPT

Total roster

Columns with “Two” include entries that had that position from both teams in the lineup. “One” columns include entries that only had that position from one team in the lineup.

Stacks

Comments

  • bulldogbruin

    Love the new YTD data. Great stuff.

  • Antwone23

    It’s still showing Monday Nights Game information

  • colekev

    @Antwone23 said...

    It’s still showing Monday Nights Game information

    Not sure what information is from Monday. Can you be more specific to help me find it? Maybe there’s confusion because one of the teams in the most similar historical matchup is the Cowboys and they also played on Monday night?

  • Antwone23

    @colekev said...

    Not sure what information is from Monday. Can you be more specific to help me find it? Maybe there’s confusion because one of the teams in the most similar historical matchup is the Cowboys and they also played on Monday night?

    It’s not showing Carolina vs Steelers it’s still showing Titans vs Cowboys and using the Broncos vs Oakland in the historical match up as well

  • colekev

    @Antwone23 said...

    It’s not showing Carolina vs Steelers it’s still showing Titans vs Cowboys and using the Broncos vs Oakland in the historical match up as well

    Weird. I don’t see that. I see the information for tonights matchup. I’ll check to see if there’s any reason you’re not seeing what I’m seeing.

  • Cal

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    @Antwone23 said...

    It’s not showing Carolina vs Steelers it’s still showing Titans vs Cowboys and using the Broncos vs Oakland in the historical match up as well

    Can you copy/paste the URL in your browser Antwone?

    This is the one you should see: https://rotogrinders.com/showdowns/draftkings-showdown-analysis-week-10-tnf-steelers-panthers-2752256

  • Volkster6

    Thanks for posting the YTD info Kevin.

  • KardiacChris

    All the data looks correct to me Kevin and thanks.

  • sjj33j1s

    Very cool stuff. Does position rank in the YTD charts refer to where that player finished scoring wise on that specific slate?

  • colekev

    @sjj33j1s said...

    Very cool stuff. Does position rank in the YTD charts refer to where that player finished scoring wise on that specific slate?

    No. It’s the positional ranking in terms of salary. The assumption being the “best” WR/RB/TE will have the highest salary.

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