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Best DFS stacks to play in Week 16

Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) runs the ball against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

This analysis of DFS main-slate stacks is a variation of the methodology used in analyses on the single-game DraftKings showdown slates. It 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.

I’m taking the same outline and applying it instead to the DFS main slate by projecting the likelihood each team’s QB-WR, RB-DST, QB-WR-TE, QB-RB-WR stacks will be the highest-scoring of the slate. These are some of the most popular stack combinations employed in DFS strategy.

The information below is entirely in the form of plots and tables. If you’d like additional information and analysis on the same methodology broken out by position, please refer to the positional piece that also comes out every week.

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METHODOLOGY

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, 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 simulate the main slate 10,000 times by randomly choosing one of the 75 matchups for each game and then find the highest-scoring QB-WR, RB-DST, QB-WR-TE and QB-RB-WR stacks on the simulated slate.

Every match of historical and current games is not perfect, but the simulation allows us to smooth out the bumps and get a strong picture of how a slate of similar games would have played out.

The last step is totaling up the number of times a particular team shows up as the top stack for each of the three stacks projected and then dividing that number by the total simulations. That number is what I call “highest scoring %” on the y-axis of the plots below labeled by team logo. Below the plots by team, I join the highest projected players that make up the stacks for that team and list their projected fantasy points and salaries for DraftKings and FanDuel.

HOW TO VIEW THE PLOTS

Each plot below has every team on the main slate positioned by the combined salary of the stack and the percentage of time that team’s stack was the highest scorer in the simulations.

One way to look at them is that anything above the dashed horizontal line is a good scoring stack, and anything to the right of the dashed vertical line is a high-priced stack. You should pay most attention to the upper-right (high-scoring and high-priced) and upper-left (high-scoring and low-priced) quadrants. Ideally, you’ll find something in the upper-left that you’re confident in, but often paying up and moving into the upper-right can be beneficial.

QUARTERBACK/WIDE RECEIVER STACK

QB/WR players

Team Highest % Player Pos DK Fpts DK Salary FD Fpts FD Salary
LAC 10.3 Justin Herbert QB 24.1 8,400 25.8 7,200
LAC 10.3 Keenan Allen WR 13.9 7,700 18.0 7,700
DET 7.7 Tim Boyle QB 15.3 6,000 16.4 4,000
DET 7.7 Kalif Raymond WR 9.3 5,200 11.5 3,900
LA 7.2 Matthew Stafford QB 20.3 7,900 22.1 6,700
LA 7.2 Cooper Kupp WR 19.1 9,800 25.1 9,100
ATL 6.3 Matt Ryan QB 20.7 6,800 22.3 5,400
ATL 6.3 Russell Gage WR 10.1 6,700 12.9 5,900
TB 6.2 Tom Brady QB 20.9 8,400 22.7 7,200
TB 6.2 Antonio Brown WR 13.0 7,000 16.6 4,900
DEN 5.5 Drew Lock QB 14.9 6,600 15.9 5,100
DEN 5.5 Courtland Sutton WR 8.8 5,400 11.0 4,200
MIN 5.0 Kirk Cousins QB 18.1 7,300 19.5 6,200
MIN 5.0 Justin Jefferson WR 16.2 8,400 20.7 8,100
BLT 5.0 Lamar Jackson QB 22.1 7,800 23.5 6,900
BLT 5.0 Marquise Brown WR 10.3 6,400 13.2 5,800
NE 4.9 Mac Jones QB 16.0 6,700 17.1 5,300
NE 4.9 Jakobi Meyers WR 10.9 5,700 14.0 4,900
LV 4.8 Derek Carr QB 18.2 7,000 19.6 5,800
LV 4.8 Hunter Renfrow WR 11.6 7,100 15.0 6,800
CAR 4.5 Cam Newton QB 10.0 7,200 10.3 5,600
CAR 4.5 D.J. Moore WR 13.1 6,400 16.9 5,700
JAX 4.4 Trevor Lawrence QB 16.0 6,500 17.0 5,000
JAX 4.4 Marvin Jones Jr. WR 8.8 5,600 10.9 4,400
NYG 4.3 Jake Fromm QB 14.2 6,400 15.0 5,000
NYG 4.3 Kenny Golladay WR 9.8 5,500 12.0 5,300
KC 3.8 Patrick Mahomes QB 19.4 8,700 20.6 7,700
KC 3.8 Mecole Hardman WR 9.2 5,200 11.5 3,500
SEA 3.6 Russell Wilson QB 19.5 7,500 20.7 6,100
SEA 3.6 D.K. Metcalf WR 13.1 6,700 16.3 6,400
BUF 3.1 Josh Allen QB 21.1 8,500 22.5 7,500
BUF 3.1 Stefon Diggs WR 13.6 7,500 17.5 7,600
CHI 3.1 Justin Fields QB 16.7 7,000 17.6 5,200
CHI 3.1 Darnell Mooney WR 10.9 6,100 13.8 5,400
PIT 2.7 Ben Roethlisberger QB 12.9 6,800 13.9 5,500
PIT 2.7 Diontae Johnson WR 11.5 7,400 15.1 7,500
PHI 2.6 Jalen Hurts QB 21.3 7,700 22.6 6,400
PHI 2.6 DeVonta Smith WR 10.1 5,900 12.6 6,000
CIN 2.6 Joe Burrow QB 20.1 7,100 21.7 5,900
CIN 2.6 Ja'Marr Chase WR 14.9 7,100 18.7 7,100
HST 2.4 Davis Mills QB 15.9 6,600 17.2 5,500
HST 2.4 Nico Collins WR 9.2 5,200 11.6 3,400
NYJ 2.0 Zach Wilson QB 14.6 6,600 15.4 5,300
NYJ 2.0 Jamison Crowder WR 10.2 5,600 13.2 5,000

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