DraftKings Reignmakers | Week 4 Deep Roster Strategy Review

Chris Koch
PARTNER
DraftKings Reignmakers | Week 4 Deep Roster Strategy Review

DraftKings released a new deep roster format for Reignmakers fantasy football in Week 4. In case you missed it, I broke down some potential strategies and spoke about the game theory involved in this new roster format here.

In this article, we’re going to look at how this game theory and strategizing played out for the Deep Roster vs Main Slate contests.

Thursday vs Sunday Contest Selection Game Theory Review

In the article I wrote on Thursday, I spoke about how contest selection will depend on how the introduction of Thursday full slate deep roster contests might affect the number of entries in the Sunday main slate contests. I predicted the market would be pretty efficient and there would be very little value to gain by choosing full slate or main slate contests to enter your optimal rosters into.

I was mostly wrong. There was a notable advantage in choosing one slate over the other. More surprising though, is that the advantage was not the same for each rarity tier. Let’s take a look at how things shook out:


What we are looking at in the table above is the expected value of the contest as a percentage of a rough average cost to build an optimal fantasy point per dollar lineup for that contest. In other words, the amount of your lineup cost that you are expected to win back in that contest on the given week. The higher the percentage, the better, as it means the more of your cost you are expected to get back. With deep roster contests requiring nine cards instead of five in the main slate, you generally wind up with a roughly 30 percent higher cost to construct a lineup. This needs to be factored into contest selection to understand the true EV.

As we can see, the main slate Fiat Frenzy or Single Entry contests were the better “bang for your buck” in every rarity tier except for Rare where the deep roster actually turned out to be a better value. Predicting this would be the case for the rare deep roster actually helped me sneak out a slight bit more value from my rare cards than I otherwise would have this week.

The number of entries and prize pools will fluctuate week to week so it's hard to say which contests will be better going forward. Based on week 4 data, it appears it’ll be more likely that 5-card roster contests will be slightly higher EV in most cases unless the field catches on.

Deep Roster Build Strategy Review

Another aspect of the deep roster I discussed was roster build strategy. I mentioned the high variance that comes with the kicker and defense position so it was best to keep your costs to fill these slots to a minimum. This certainly showed to be the case this week.

Kickers as always were all over the board, but with defenses too, we saw some of the league’s worst (and cheapest) defenses put up good fantasy scores this week. Some of the cheapest defensive cards available going into the week like the Giants, Raiders, Cardinals, Falcons, and Patriots all scored over 10 fantasy points performing just as well as most of the more expensive defense cards.

Playing the lower rarity stud TE or QB did not work out well with week 4 being dominated by Jared Goff and TJ Hockenson. I maintain though it's probably best to use your lower rarity card on the more expensive running QBs like Hurts or Murray even if this week didn’t turn out that way.

Showdown vs Full Slate Player Strategy Review

Another potential strategy I discussed was that using players in the showdown games could possibly be an advantage as, theoretically, most of these player cards in circulation should be going towards the showdown contests rather than the Thursday full slate contests.

Upon viewing the top five lineups in the CORE, RARE, and ELITE Fiat Frenzy full slate deep roster contests, almost all of them indeed had players that went off in these showdown games. However, ownership percentages for these players didn’t seem to be out of the ordinary for them playing in showdown games so I’m not seeing much of an ownership advantage to be had here. This week just happened to have lots of the high scorers in showdown games such as Tyreek Hill, Tee Higgins, Mike Evans, and Travis Kelce.

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