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Daily Fantasy Football Projections: Wild Card Round Recap


RotoDoc holds a Ph.D. in mathematics and tackles sports data to give you a competitive edge in your fantasy games.

The machine learning model I recently developed underwent its first test this past weekend. The final projections the model churned out for wild-card weekend were as a whole quite accurate. Even a rash of injuries that forced three teams to play short-handed didn’t significantly handicap the model. Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Arizona fared far worse, combining for 43 points and an 0-3 record as each were eliminated from the playoffs.

The model’s projections plotted against actual points gave an R-squared value of 0.542 among active players, which is a very decent result. If we remove backup QBs, the model still had an R-squared of 0.528 against actual results.


Leading all scorers during wild-card weekend with 28.1 points (using DraftKings scoring) was Dan Herron1 whom the model had projected sixth in points among running backs, but second in points per thousand dollars (P/$). Terrance Williams (24.2 pts) came in as the top WR while Andrew Luck (23.84 pts) was the top scoring QB. And if you followed Rex Windwood’s DFS advice, you were pleased that Heath Miller (12.6 pts) came in as the top scoring TE. The model had Williams ranked 17th, Luck first, and Miller third at their positions.

I mentioned that Antonio BrownCole Beasley, and Giovani Bernard were in play in various formats. Each of them finished near enough the model projection that had you inserted them into your lineups you were probably satisfied. On the other hand, my pick of Andy Dalton didn’t pan out, but to be fair had I known A.J. Green and Jermaine Gresham would be out I would have steered you elsewhere. Greg Olsen was another miss by the model. The Panthers were able to run the ball well and spread the ball around among nine receivers in the passing game to keep Arizona off balance.

Hopefully you were able to use the model to find some decent plays and have a successful weekend. The model projections will be back for the divisional round later in the week, so stay tuned.

  1. H/T to Justin Bailey for nailing it.  (back)

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