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Joe 2 Pro: Daily Fantasy Sports GPP Strategy, Week 4 – Game Script

Matthew Stafford

If you missed my first article introducing the “Joe 2 Pro” series, you can read it here. It gives a brief overview on how to attack daily fantasy sports without feeling like you’re drowning. What I am trying to do with the Joe 2 Pro series is bring up topics that I wish I knew about when I had first started playing. There’s definitely a learning curve when you go from seasonal leagues to daily play.

When I was a beginning daily fantasy sports player, I didn’t really pay much attention to anything when selecting my players other than general match-ups between players and where players were ranked according to certain mainstream sites. Things are much different now. Now I look up red zone stats, Vegas lines, player props, market share, wind speed, home/road splits, all sorts of things.

Before I select players I try and imagine how I think the game is going to play out. Game script can be tough to predict because there are so many variables in play. In Week 2 when the Packers played the Jets, I was mildly concerned about using Aaron Rodgers because I thought the game script wasn’t going to work in his favor. I figured they’d get off to a quick lead and then hit cruise control and effortlessly trounce the Jets. Well, on the first possession Rodgers fumbled the snap and all of a sudden the game script had totally changed. Green Bay found itself down 14-3 after the first quarter and had abandoned the run for the rest the game. Rodgers ended up with 346 passing yards and three touchdowns on 42 attempts. It was a very good day for anybody who had Rodgers plugged into their DFS lineup.

Some tools for trying to figure out game script include looking up player props on online betting sites such as Bovada, or going to Pro Football Reference and filtering by defensive plays allowed and also looking at offensive plays run. This proves to be useful because you can search and see how many plays offenses are calling per game.

Potential Favorable Week 4 Game Scripts

Every week for GPPs, I make two-to-five different lineups. This, of course, depends largely on my bankroll and the buy-in of the games I enter. If you’ve been following my series from the beginning, then you know I’ve been profitable the last two weeks. In turn, I plan on playing four or five different GPP lineups this week. My teams will likely have some exposure to the games below.

49ers vs. Eagles

It shouldn’t be a surprise that Chip Kelly’s quick-hitting offense averages the fourth-most offensive plays per game at 71. So why do I like the 49ers offense? Since their offense is on the quick side of things, this means more opportunities for the 49ers offense as the Philly defense allows the third-most offensive plays per game at 73. This game is projected for the second-highest total this week at 50.5. The Eagles give up the second-most fantasy points per game to both the quarterback and wide receiver position, so I will be seeking exposure to the Colin Kaepernick and some of his wide receiver weapons. If you don’t want to pay up for Michael Crabtree, then Anquan Boldin isn’t a bad secondary option. Don’t sleep on the Eagles offense, either. This isn’t the 49ers defense of old.

Lions vs. Jets

One of the main reasons I love the Lions this week is because I believe the play calling is going to be rather pass-heavy. Everyone knows the Jets have a great front seven and that you can exploit their secondary. The Jets give up the second-fewest FPPG to RBs and give up the third most FPPG to QBs and WRs. Only 34 percent of the plays called against the Jets this season have been run plays. The Lions run the ninth-most plays in the league at 69 snaps/game and their play calling slightly favors the pass, as 58 percent of their offensive play calls have been pass plays. Combining the pass-heavy approach opposing offenses take when squaring off with the Jets, I’d expect the trend to continue with Matthew Stafford and the Lions WR corps.

Saints vs. Cowboys

The Cowboys have run 95 rushing plays, compared to 89 pass attempts this year. This is important because if they’re able to keep their run game this heavy then it may limit the possessions for Drew Brees and the Saints. Their defense has allowed 58 snaps/game which is the fifth-least in the league. However, I think the Cowboys defense is so bad, that it has potential to negate this. The Saints run the eighth-most offensive plays per game and if they’re able to force points at will, then the Cowboys may have to abandon the run game. I think the Saints offense can be efficient enough on the turf where even if Dallas chooses to run DeMarco Murray in an attempt to keep Brees off the field, it won’t matter all that much. Dallas ran 29 times for 123 yards last week and Austin Davis still managed to throw for 327 yards, two TDs, and two interceptions. Brandin Cooks and Jimmy Graham are the two receiving options on the Saints that I am making sure I have some exposure to this week.

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