97 competitors entered our Week 2 NFL contest on FanDuel last week, up from 73 in Week 1. It’s great to see the competition picking up steam. If this trend continues, we’ll be announcing new additional bonus prizes soon!
As usual, this week we’ll be giving away a free Football Season Pass to TeamRankings (a $249 value) to the winner of our contest, to accompany the $1,000 in cash prizes.
Props to monst4r for outscoring almost 100 other TR users in Week 2, including us. You can see all Week 2 results and season-to-date stats for our fantasy tourneys here.
How To Get An Invite
If you’re reading this post, you’re welcome to play in our weekly fantasy football tournaments. All you need to do is use the link below to sign up for FanDuel.
Just make sure the “Promo code” field says TEAMRANKINGS when you sign up:
This is the third installment in David’s diary about playing one-day fantasy football for the first time. All other posts are listed in this blog section.
After familiarizing myself with the FanDuel interface in Week 1, I entered a few more tournaments in Week 2. I basically used this week to explore a few free daily fantasy player projection sites, and entered some lineups based on those projections.
Projection Sites I Explored
Here are the sites I checked out this week, all of which were partly chosen because they have projections available that take into account the FanDuel scoring system and player salaries. This allowed me to quickly see which players each site considered the best value picks.
- RotoWire — I mentioned this site last week. I like the lineup optimizer they have. It allows for a lot of customization of what players are included/excluded, which makes it easy to quickly come up with alternate lineups designed around specific concepts (e.g. lock in 2 star RB’s then optimize around them, lock in a couple studs from a specific team, then optimize around them, etc.)
- FantasyPros — Their projections seem to be based on the consensus of multiple fantasy “experts.” Without diving deeper into historical accuracy, it seems like a “wisdom of the crowd” approach might be a good idea, rather than trusting a single source.
- numberFire — Nothing particularly noteworthy about their features, I just wanted some more variety in my projections/entries.
TeamRankings user monst4r crushed the competition in our Week 2 private tournament on FanDuel, setting a new high score record for our contests with 156.44 points!
(You can see all the final standings here.)
That score was more than 10 points better than second place finisher adondarski at 146.32, and it bested adamhasu‘s previous high score of 148.08 by more than 8 points.
Here’s a rapid-fire list of weekly highlights from the vast array of NFL content we publish. Of course, we’ll also share some predictions and picks for NFL Week 3 and beyond.
NFL Week 3 Power Rankings Update
- The top 5 ranked teams are mostly the same. There wasn’t much movement in the top five slots of our predictive rankings this week. The ordering of the top four teams (Seattle, Denver, San Francisco, and New England) remained unchanged, while New Orleans was replaced at #5 by Cincinnati, who climbed one spot this week. Two game results is a very small sample size, so our preseason ratings still exert a good amount of influence on each team’s rating entering Week 3. However, the influence of preseason ratings will continue to decay over time, as the sample size of regular season game results grows.
As a complete newbie to one-day fantasy football contests, I spent most of my time last week just getting used to the FanDuel interface, and getting ready to dive into this new world.
It was a super busy work week here at TR, so I had my hands full just learning what the various game types are, figuring out how to enter contests, how to pick my team, what tracking features FanDuel has, etc. I also did some Internet research to try to find some resources to help me learn about daily fantasy strategy.
Week 1 Recap
As I mentioned in my first post yesterday, I’m starting the year with a $250 bankroll, and am going to be tracking my results and the growth (or shrinkage) of my bankroll all season. My username on FanDuel is tr_david, if you want to track me down on the site.
Remember, I am not an expert at this; I have no prior experience playing daily fantasy football. So I’ll be pleasantly surprised if I am able to increase this initial bankroll by the end of the season. And I fully anticipate losing some money along the way, especially in the beginning.
In Week 1, I entered two very low stakes leagues just to get my feet wet.
Our inaugural one-day fantasy football tournament on FanDuel was a lot of fun last week. See the results below, and props to adamhasu for outscoring 72 other TR users, including us!
To amp up the prize pool this week, we’re going to give away a free Football Season Pass to TeamRankings (a $249 value) to the winner of our Week 2 tournament, along with $1,000 in cash prizes from the contest.
Hi, I’m David. I’m going to be playing one-day fantasy football for the first time this NFL season, and writing about it here on the TeamRankings blog.
A Bit About Me
For those of you that aren’t familiar with me, I write the weekly write up for our NFL survivor pool picks section, and give also give football pick’em and survivor strategy advice in our Q&A forums. Though really those things are only one small part of what I do at TR. My day-to-day job is mostly a combination of web development, data management and analysis, predictive modeling, and product development. And I blog sometimes. Oh yeah, and answer customer support emails. That’s life at a small company for you…
I also like to gamble (if I think I have an edge, of course) and play in contests and pools, mainly using the data and analysis here on TeamRankings to enter NFL and college football pick’em pools, Survivor pools, and March Madness pools.
My Interest in Daily Fantasy Sports
I used to play traditional fantasy football and baseball, but I quit years ago because it was taking up too much of my time, and the stakes I played for just couldn’t justify the huge amount of time spent on research.
However, I’ve heard a couple stories recently of gamblers who claim to be making great money playing daily fantasy sports. They say they have an easier time making a profit with daily fantasy than with sports betting, and that has me intrigued.
Here’s a quick-hit list of weekly highlights from the vast array of content we publish on TeamRankings.com. Of course, we’ll also share some predictions and picks for the current NFL week and beyond.
NFL Week 2 Power Rankings Update
- Vikings surge, Seattle now King Kong. Minnesota was the top gainer in our new predictive rankings this week, shooting from a preseason #25 ranking up to #18 after trouncing the Rams 34-6 on the road. Detroit’s three-TD victory at home over the NY Giants moved them from #14 to #9, a quite significant move as there is a decent drop in rating value between Detroit at #9 and San Diego at #10. Seattle made a statement with its blowout of Green Bay, and the Seahawks are now the undisputed king of the hill at #1 in the league, almost a full point better than our preseason #1, Denver.
- Some Week 1 upsets not as big as you think. While Tennessee’s road upset of Kansas City and Buffalo’s road upset of Chicago moved them both up in the rankings somewhat (TEN from #26 to #21 and BUF from #29 to #26), the impact wasn’t as huge as most people would probably think. The reason why is because our preseason ratings pegged both Kansas City (preseason rank #23) and Chicago (preseason rank #22) as teams that would be worse in 2014 than in 2013. These two upsets may provide the first evidence of that — we’ll have to wait and see. But bottom line, these two upsets were much more shocking to most people than they were to our ratings.
Welcome to our weekly post on NFL survivor pools, where we recap the previous week and list a few teams you should definitely avoid this week if your goal is to win your pool.
Week 1 Recap
For a while it looked like chaos would rule in Week 1. The most popular pick, the Eagles at 44%, were down 17-0 at halftime to the lowly Jaguars before ultimately winning. And the second most popular pick, the Bears at 19%, did lose to the Bills in overtime. So including some of the other upsets, over 70% of survivor players were nearly eliminated in Week 1!
The actual value ended up being only 28%, but that’s still a very good week…provided you didn’t pick one of those losing teams, of course.
Weeks like Week 1 serve as great examples of why mathematically optimal survivor strategy, which drives our recommended picks, often advocates avoiding the most popular teams — even if they have higher win odds (Philadelphia) and/or less future value (both Philly and Chicago) than the team you choose.
If you survived Week 1, your surviving entries just had their expected share of the prize pool go up by almost 40%, assuming an equal split among all surviving entries. If the Eagles had lost as well, the expected share for your surviving entries would have more than tripled.
This fall, we’ll be hosting private one-day fantasy football tournaments for TeamRankings users on FanDuel, with large cash prize pools. (Learn how to get an invite.)
To show everyone just how easy it is to play on FanDuel, we put together this quick tutorial.
First, once we put together our private tournament for a given week, we’ll email a link to the tournament to everyone who signs up for FanDuel using our Promo code, TEAMRANKINGS.
Once we send you the link to the tournament, entering the contest is all done on one screen, which makes things quite easy to understand.
(Click the image below to enlarge it.)