NFL DFS: Paydirt Stacks and Stats Breakdown
Welcome to the stacks breakdown here at Paydirt! This is going to be a weekly article aimed at giving thoughts and notes on the best and worst stacks to focus on for your NFL DFS lineups. We will talk about the sportsbook and vegas information as well as the key pieces of information for the teams in good and bad spots. This article is best used with the projections models here at Paydirt, but it will still be valuable even as a one off piece of content. While the focus is on Draftkings, the content is applicable to Fanduel as well. Costs, Projections, and LevX format will be Draftkings/Fanduel.
- Even without Tua, the Dolphins profile as one of the most valuable stacks of the week.
- The Vikings have some ugly baselines, but the upside is maintained as they head into a week that should unlock their ceilings.
- With Zach Wilson back at the helm, the Jets prices are far too low for the upside their condensed offense represents.
- The Jaguars look like a competent offense, but they lack the real upside to win in GPPs.
NFL Implied totals and slate outlook
The highest over/under this week belongs to the Eagles vs. the Cardinals. It currently sits at 49 with the Eagles as 5.5 point favorites and a team total of 27.25. This game is interesting because it involves two teams that typically skinny stack with rushing QBs. Because of this, it’ll make for an interesting roster construction with just a 2+1 leaving a lot of room for one offs and secondary correlations.
The lowest total on the slate goes to the 49ers vs. the Panthers. This total is currently at 39 with the 49ers 6.5 point favorites and a team total of 22.75. This game projects to be awful for DFS and for your eyeballs in general. While the RBs here project well and should be valued on this slate, the receiving corps are significantly lacking. Likewise, the 49ers defense will gain a lot of attention. Overall, there are attractive pieces here, but nothing worth stacking.
This slate is missing a large staple of the regulars towards the top of the models. The Raiders, the Ravens, and the Chiefs all play island games which leaves more of the middling options for the main. This should lead to more volatility across the scoring because of the “lesser” talent to pick from. On the other hand, it’ll allow people to focus more heavily on the strong options in those talent pools. In sum, this slate should be a lot of fun and there are plenty of routes to take to success.
NFL DFS Stacks to prioritize
It's important to figure out the best spots to stack each weak, as correlation plays a large part in the upside of your lineups for NFL DFS. Here are the stacks that project the best in the models here at Paydirt:
Some of the tables used for the stats in this article:
- Aggressive Throw Index: https://paydirtdfs.com/nfl-aggressive-throw-index-league-wide/
- League adjusted pass and rush rates: https://paydirtdfs.com/nfl-pass-and-rush-splits-league-wide/
- League adjusted redzone pass and rush rates: https://paydirtdfs.com/nfl-redzone-pass-and-rush-splits-league-wide/
- NFL Receiver research sheets: https://paydirtdfs.com/nfl-fantasy-receiving-research-sheets/
Miami Dolphins: Upside and uncertainty
Stack – Teddy Bridgewater/Jaylen Waddle/Tyreek Hill
Cost – $20,100/$22,500
Projection – 65.61/54.52
The big thing for this stack is that Tua is out and Teddy Bridgewater will be playing QB. Bridgewater is a solid bridge QB and a good backup, but there are certainly concerns on his impact on this offense. That said, his average yards per pass and other baselines weren’t too far off of Tua’s. The main drop was in completion percentage, which makes sense considering accuracy is Tua’s big strength. In sum, this offense may be a bit less efficient but shouldn’t be any less explosive. They come in at a hefty price on both sites, and the field will likely look for value elsewhere which could leave the Dolphins underutilized in large field contests.
- Miami continues to be league average in aggressiveness per ATI, while being top 5 in adjusted pass rate at 67.41%.
- Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle have over 70% of the teams air yards and 55% of the teams targets, making an exquisitely skinny target tree.
If you check out the NFL Range of Outcomes model and look at the Stacks tab, you’ll see that Bridgewater doesn’t contribute much to this stack. In terms of projection percentage, he accounts for just 29.37% of the stack combo. That happens to be the lowest on the slate. Feel free to focus on Tyreek and Waddle as secondary stacks rather than using Bridgewater for more upside.
Minnesota Vikings: Undervalued with upside
Stack – Kirk Cousins/Justin Jefferson/Adam Thielen
Cost – $21,500/$22,200
Projection – 55.94/48.20
Things are going to get a little ugly, but hear me out. The Vikings continue to have some of the highest upside baselines in the league even if it doesn’t pass the eye test. Their aggressiveness is second worst in the league at 6.93% below average. Likewise, the game total for this one is just 44, as the Bears just suck super hard. But! The Vikings have the fourth highest adjusted pass rate in the league at 66.33% and lead the league in redzone pass rate at 75%. This means that the floor expectation for passing TDs is the second highest on the slate at 2.16. For reference, the Bills pass TD expectation is 2.01.
- Justin Jefferson is averaging seven receptions and 98 receiving yards with a wild 41% of the air yards with only Tyreek Hill and Cooper Kupp having better baselines.
- Kirk Cousins has been mostly underwhelming, but has had three tough matchups (NO, GB, and PHI) and should have a much easier time against the Bears.
- Dalvin Cook has had a strong rushing role, but his recieving work has vanish and he averages just 3.25 targets per game for a 9% targetshare.
Overall, we like this stack as an underutilized upside play focusing on Justin Jefferson. While Adam Thielen is the natural pairing, going with Irv Smith Jr. can help create cap space while maintaining touchdown and target upside. If you do stack the Vikings, there’s no need for a run back from the Bears.
New York Jets: Cheap with upside
Stack – Zach Wilson/Corey Davis/ Garrett Wilson
Cost – $15,600/$19,100
Projection – 53.65/45.69
We typically aim to provide a value stack and this week that goes to the Jets. With Zach Wilson back, the Jets were certainly functional, and the upside is higher with a better QB. They have a terrific game environment against the Dolphins, who were discussed earlier. Similarly to the Vikings, they have a very high redzone pass rate (second highest in the league) at 73.17%. Granted, that rate dropped in week 4, but it should come back up against a faster paced opponent. Finally, this stack is cheap no matter how you cut it and allows for pay ups at all other positions.
- Zach Wilson threw 50 times and was understandably inefficient, but the volume leads to upside as the rust shakes off.
- The combo of Garrett Wilson, Corey Davis, and Elijah Moore accounts for 93% of the air yards for this team so you know where the ceilings are.
- The Jets have the second most total air yards in the league at 1,547, behind just the Saints who sit at 1,630.
What we are looking for here is upside relative to price so that we can fit in the expensive pieces with true ceilings. Utilizing any combo of Z.Wilson/G.Wilson/Davis/Moore allows plenty of salary and is getting a piece of a condensed offense. Likewise, you have an easy bring back with either Waddle or Hill from the Dolphins.
NFL DFS stacks to avoid
While it's important to find the best stacks to use, it's equally as vital to figure out the best stacks to avoid. Here are the stacks with the largest negative LevX (leverage score) based on current ownership projections:
Jacksonville Jaguars: Consistently low upside
Let's see if we can write up a team that doesn't win someone a million dollars this week. The Jaguars are a fine stack in terms of median expectation but lack upside. This is because of their base passing rates and preference of running in the redzone. They have the sixth lowest ATI in the league at 4.36% under league average and pass just 58% of the time in the adjusted script. they also have just a 52% pass rate in the redzone, which hurts their passing TD expectation quite a bit. Granted, Christian Kirk is an awesome one off with a 33/40% split of targets and air yards, but you can do better with other main stacks.