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Best NFL game stacks to target for DFS GPPs in Week 7

Oct 19, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) rolls out against the Dallas Cowboys in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Stacking is essential to success in DFS GPPs. The average user who submits a handful of lineups on any one DFS slate doesn’t stack nearly enough in their lineups. The art of stacking is a way to increase variance, which is the only option that offers enough upside to win a GPP tournament. An overlooked approach is the game-level stack, which takes not only a quarterback and pass-catching option but also runs it back with a pass-catcher or running back from the opposing team.

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We see in our introductory article on stacking that if we hit on the correct quarterback and wide receiver to stack, a player from the opposing team is typically going to be worthwhile to pair with this combination to apply more lineup correlation into your roster builds.

This provides inherent upside to our lineups — if we hit on the correct quarterback, two or more additional lineup spots are typically hit on by the simple fact that they are highly correlated to our quarterback play. If your quarterback is a miss, the rest of your lineup is likely in a similar situation, as it is hard to pull off a quality finish in a GPP contest with a dud at signal-caller.

Focusing on this approach of identifying quarterbacks who could be hits, we have built a model to project who is most likely to finish as the highest-scoring quarterback on the main slate based on fantasy projections, opponent-adjusted grades and betting market lines. Utilizing correlations for how fantasy points are distributed at the game level, we can then see the correct framework for how to approach roster construction for a game stack.

WEEK 6 REVIEW

There were a few different game stacks scattered throughout the top 10 of the DraftKings millionaire maker contest this weekend. The best and most frequent one was Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Justin Jefferson with the addition of Hayden Hurst on the top lineup. Another option that took second was Deshaun Watson, Brandin Cooks, Will Fuller V and Derrick Henry, which highlights just how beneficial game stacking is to finding upside in GPP contests. 

The top stack was owned on only .5% of rosters in the Milly Maker contest, providing correlated upside with the added benefit of narrowing down lineups that you are forced to compete against. The trio of Texans players was owned in less than 1% of lineups, with the addition of a 26% owned Derrick Henry dropping it down to .35%. There needs to be no clearer indication of the benefits of game stacking than what Week 6 provided.

Our written article mentioned both of these matchups, but with Julio Jones' uncertain status, we highlighted Calvin Ridley as the appropriate Falcon to roster. The definitive news on Jones caused DFS players to reevaluate this situation, with Ridley not offering nearly as much upside in relation to his ownership. 

2020 has brought a significant adjustment to game totals after increased scoring. Week 6 was the first week where a majority of games have gone under, but this hasn’t caused bookmakers to stop pricing up totals.

The mean total for Week 7 is slightly lower than the previous three weeks but is still the fourth-highest mean since we began tracking in 2007. This should cause game-level stack ownership to be incredibly spread out. There is no obvious chalk, meaning that if you have conviction about a certain play or game to load up on that situation. 

This model is low on some sides of games that appear to have worthwhile opportunities based solely on the total. Both Carolina at New Orleans and Cleveland at Cincinnati have totals over 50, but the New Orleans and Cleveland sides are getting next to no recognition in our model. This could be a decent bounce-back spot for both quarterbacks, but their opponent-adjusted grades are causing them to fall significantly in this outlook.

Let’s dive into the best stacks for Week 7 based on our model predictions for games that could involve the highest-scoring players at each position. 

HIGH-OWNED OPTIONS

DETROIT LIONS @ ATLANTA FALCONS

The Falcons continue to be involved in matchups that produce optimal game stacks. Week 7 is no different, with the highest total game happening in Atlanta. This number has dropped 1.5 points since the open, behind 78% of the cash on the under. PFF Greenline sees this as an overcorrection, with value opening up on the over. This is a strong indication that we could see more points than current market projections, which indicates numerous unaccounted-for opportunities to score fantasy points. 

Oct 5, 2020; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) throws a pass in the first quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Our predictive model sees this as the second-most likely game to produce the top-scoring wide receiver and the fourth-most likely game to produce the top-scoring quarterback. Numerous playable options exist, but like last week, identifying the right ones will be key to GPP success. 

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