It is crucial to not draw too many conclusions from a one-game sample size, but the chalk was not too kind in Week 1. Two of the higher-priced and higher-owned players absolutely smashed — Josh Jacobs and Davante Adams were must-own players to finish at the top of a GPP contest. This is the balancing act when not only projecting ownership but balancing it with making quality lineup decisions.
Boston Scott, Austin Ekeler, Marvin Jones, DeSean Jackson and Terry McLaurin made up the remaining list of the top-owned players in the biggest fantasy contests, and all sunk lineups that decided to utilize them. Only one lineup that finished in the top 10 of the $100 Millionaire Maker contest on DraftKings had one of these players and was able to overcome the dud performance. The average cumulative ownership of lineups in the top 10 was 112.8. All but one of the lineups in the top 10 had at least one player under 5% owned.
As pointed out in our offseason series discussing ownership at each position, it is typically the lower-priced options — especially at wide receiver — that have more variance in their fantasy outcomes and are worth fading based on ownership. Playing and being right on a player with 40%+ ownership does little to ensure a top finish in a DFS contest. There are weeks when this player explodes, but it is not maximizing your win probability to pile on this situation.
Week 2 has historically tracked closely with Week 1 ownership. At the quarterback position, we still see condensed ownership around 10%, with no players receiving ownership greater than 20%.
For the remaining skill positions, we are right in line with the rest of the season's numbers. There is a small blip of high ownership, but that isn’t expected to continue this week.
After a Week 1 where we saw condensed ownership on a few noteworthy plays, Week 2 projects ownership to be much more spread out. There are a handful of cheap running backs who should be in line for significant volume after injuries around them. Other low-priced wide receivers saw higher-than-expected targets in Week 1 but didn’t have their salaries adjust to quelch demand.
How these situations are handled or targeted will go a long way toward determining how successful your DFS lineups are. Generally speaking, this means that ownership shouldn’t play a huge role in your decision-making process for this weekend's slate. Let’s take a look at some of the projected highest-owned players for the main slate along with some possible pivots off these players at similar price points.