Daily fantasy sports sites are testing the waters with all types of new games, and a prime example of that is DraftKings rolling out their showdown games. These fantasy games are a unique way to play by focusing on just one single game. You're filling out a smaller lineup (six players) which features higher price tags for players and the option to choose one captain on your roster.
While we're now in Week 4 of the 2018 NFL season, DraftKings is still offering monster showdown games for Thursday Night Football. This week's matchup is a good one between the Minnesota Vikings and Los Angeles Rams, which features the daily fantasy site offering a $10 game with $1,111,111 guaranteed. First place in this 150-max game will win $250,000.
Along with the huge headliner game, DraftKings is offering a lower buy-in option with their 20-max game that has $150,000 guaranteed and a $3 entry fee. Other games worth noting include a $12 single entry with $30,000 guaranteed and a $1 option with $75,000 in guarantees.
Before we dive into the action for Week 4 and the Thursday Night Football game let's offer a quick insight into how showdown games work.
– Six total players (one captain, five flex players)
– Captain selection costs 1.5 times standard salary but scores 1.5 times the standard points
– Can choose from any position (QB, RB, WR, TE, K, DST)
– $50,000 salary cap
– You can use more than one quarterback
There are quite a few ways to build lineups that are different from what the overall "chalk" will be, and in certain games, that's what you'll want to focus on. Creating a lineup that's different than others isn't a tough task, especially considering the potential to use kickers and defenses, which most fantasy players will opt against.
I'll break down a few different lineups, here which will include a variety of players in the captain spot. There will be two optimal lineups, a lineup for 150-max games (more risk), and one for single entries/cash games (higher-floor players). Before diving into that, though, I'm first going to hit on showdown strategy for this week's game. Every week the strategy will be different, as choices for captain spots will vary.
DraftKings Showdown Strategy for Vikings vs. Rams
The captain spot can be the difference between a huge payday and failing to cash in certain instances. While often times using a less-expensive player seems appealing so you can potentially fit in two or three stars, choosing whether or not to do that depends on the specific game.
Personally, I select 4-5 players to consider for the captain spot, which feature both expensive and cheaper options. From there, you can spread those players across multiple lineups and mix in the other top plays with them.
Here's a look at the options I'll be targeting for the captain spot in Week 4 (with captain pricing of 1.5x more):
– Todd Gurley ($17,400)
– Adam Thielen ($14,700)
– Kirk Cousins ($13,500)
– Robert Woods ($10,500)
– Cooper Kupp ($10,200)
– Kyle Rudolph ($8,400)
Favorite expensive captains: Adam Thielen, Kirk Cousins
Top value-saving captain: Cooper Kupp
Now, I'm going to break down the lines I'll be using, starting with optimal lineup No. 1, then the 150-max lineup, single-entry breakdown, and finally another all-around optimal lineup.
*Note: In some spots, I will have a lineup with Dalvin Cook included, and an alternate lineup for if he's ruled out.