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DFS Data Dive: The highest fantasy football player ceilings in Week 6

Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) passes against the Detroit Lions during the second quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Our series of analyses on the single-game DraftKings showdown slates uses the combination of current projections, historical game results and similarity algorithms to simulate an upcoming game by looking back at the most similar historical matchups.

In this analysis, I’m taking the same outline and applying it instead to the DFS main slate by projecting the likelihood each individual quarterback, running back, wide receiver, tight end and D/ST option will be the highest scorer of the slate. In doing this, we can find the unlikely tournament plays who may not have been on your radar.

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For each game on the DFS Sunday main slate, I looked through thousands of NFL matchups from 2014-2021 and found the closest analogies according to the following parameters: betting spread, over/under and average fantasy points scoring for the top-ranked positional players of both rosters (QB1, RB1, WR1, TE1).

Once I get the 75 most similar matchups for each upcoming game, I then simulate the main slate 10,000 times by randomly choosing one of the 75 matchups for each game. Then, I find the highest-scoring quarterback, running back, wide receiver, tight end and D/ST on the slate.

The last step is totaling the number of times a particular team shows up as the top option for the slate at each position and dividing by the total simulations. That number is what I call “highest-scoring %” in the team-labeled bar charts below. Below the charts, I join the highest-projected player on that team for the position, then list their projected fantasy points and salaries for DraftKings and FanDuel.


Pos Highest % Player Team DK Fpts DK Salary FD Fpts FD Salary
QB 11.6 Patrick Mahomes KC 25.7 8,300 23.9 9,000
QB 11.0 Lamar Jackson BLT 25.7 7,400 24.1 8,200
QB 7.9 Joe Burrow CIN 25.3 6,300 23.3 7,400
QB 7.2 Dak Prescott DAL 21.2 7,100 19.7 8,100
QB 7.1 Taylor Heinicke WAS 18.5 5,800 17.1 7,300
QB 6.3 Kirk Cousins MIN 18.1 6,200 16.8 7,100
QB 6.1 Justin Herbert LAC 20.5 7,300 19.0 8,000
QB 5.3 Aaron Rodgers GB 21.1 7,200 19.9 7,700
QB 5.0 Mac Jones NE 18.9 5,200 17.6 6,500
QB 4.9 Matthew Stafford LA 20.7 6,700 19.2 7,900
QB 4.9 Baker Mayfield CLV 17.8 5,900 16.8 6,800
QB 4.5 Teddy Bridgewater DEN 18.3 5,700 17.2 6,600
QB 4.0 Carson Wentz IND 18.8 5,400 17.7 6,700
QB 3.2 Sam Darnold CAR 18.6 6,100 17.2 7,500
QB 3.0 Jared Goff DET 18.3 5,100 16.7 6,900
QB 2.7 Davis Mills HST 17.2 5,200 15.9 6,700
QB 2.2 Justin Fields CHI 17.2 5,100 16.2 6,400
QB 2.0 Daniel Jones NYG 15.5 5,500 14.6 7,200
QB 1.6 Kyler Murray ARZ 19.9 7,900 19.0 8,400
QB 1.5 Derek Carr LV 19.2 5,600 17.9 7,000


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