The Process from Sunday To Tee Off

What you use and when you build is always up to you.  Whatever your DFS process is come Thursday tee off is individualistic.  While I’ve found success utilizing my personal models and strategies, it doesn’t necessarily indicate that you’ll do the same.  Some need to listen to Mayo.  Some need to scope out the top plays on Twitter while others look to fade high ownership at all cost.  Whatever the case may be, you don’t want to find jack shit while you’re combing the desert looking for clues on how to break the slate.  I wanted to share my process, and I hope it helps you as you build better and stronger lineups.


My work always starts and ends with the market in mind.  In my opinion, salary is often the most overlooked aspect of DFS.  Every show, even mine (might want to revisit this) starts by tiering the salaries and telling you who you should play every week based on price.  Salary has so much more of an influence from week to week.

There are a few simple questions that you need to ask yourself.  Do I know a player’s average salary for the season?  Do I know how much their salary has changed in the last few weeks?  Believe it or not there is a shit ton of information there that is going to be able to give you a clear picture of lineup construction, ownership, the talent of the player pool, and even Vegas sentiment.  Point being, the first thing you see is the players salary.  Your lineups are built on the constraints of those numbers.  For you to bypass the importance of the market only creates lineups that end up with some random 6K bum like Martin Piler.


This is a PGA model that I used to use.  Pieces of it anyway.  This has been built through time, many efforts and trials and errors.

There is little doubt in my mind that the best players in the world don’t utilize information or concepts from other players in the industry.  I’d lay money down that Alex Baker’s success is not strictly of his own analysis, algorithms, formulas, and projection principals.  I’d even bet big money that he is at the point of paying people that are way too smart to build him machine learning models in the realm of R and Python.  Now this is not to take away from the success of the #1 player in the world.  He absolutely fucking is, but the point being is that there is so much more to explore than some projections and a few other strokes gained numbers.  Don’t throw all your money at simple models.  There is more to it than that.

Even the best players in the industry use analysis from one another.  There is no set defined scheme or rules that equate to winning, and that is why I’m always looking to learn new tools, develop my own new metrics or even try new simulation models.  Either way, this part of the process is developed over time, and helps create lineups that correlate towards success. 



-Review my lineups for the week.  Ask myself questions.  What did I miss?  What did I overvalue?  What did I undervalue?  Were my ownership projections wrong?  Did I have the top-10 in my player pool?  Why not?  Why did you?  Who played well in round 4 that could be under the radar next week?

-I will look at my model from last year and strategize for the week.  This is where I’ll evaluate key stats for the week.


-Reserve my entries on DraftKings
-Load up my model with salaries, projections, Vegas and initial projected ownership.
Do an abundance of course research, most of which is back logged from preview years, in order to better grasp the course and how it will play.
-Look at my notes on salaries and identify the must plays and can’t plays based on initial ownership, price (over and under) and where they fit in my model.
-Identify 1-2 stats that could leverage the slate.  Is there strokes gained data that plays here that has potential to go unnoticed?
-Build my initial player pool (often way too large)
-Look at weather for the weekend.
-Prep and prepare for the Cutline
-Look for mispriced Vegas Odds

-If I’m interested, I will listen to other Podcasts in the industry.  This is typically limited 300 Yards to Unknown, Tour Junkies, Fantasy Golf Degenerates (only Kenny’s cash plays), and rarely a few others.  Again, I say optional.  Much of what I do on a week to week basis I don’t want altered because of the influence of someone else touting a particular golfer…quick side note….don’t tip free touts.  They are stealing and don’t deserve your time or money.  I did this for free for 3 years without asking for one damn tip.  It separates those from who are here for you versus those looking for a handout.
-Revisit my model and make necessary updates.  I’ll look at key stats, rumored injuries, contact some of the friends I have in the industry for any caddy news they might have.
-Try to pick apart what lineups strategy most builds will utilize and figure out a way to deviate.

-Import projections, randomness into Fantasy Cruncher.
-Review weather, tee times, and other potential factors.
-Cut the player pool down and begin lineup construction based on entries.

Straight forward and simple.  Lineups are loaded, and I’m ready to roll and watch every minute I can during the day.  (I’ll even watch replays) Come Sunday, it is back to the grind and building the best lineups that I possibly can.