A buddy of mine and I recently got into a somewhat heated discussion
over the concept of stacking players in DFS tournaments.
For those new at daily fantasy, stacking is a strategy where
a person chooses a quarterback and skill position players from
the same team with the goal of “multiplying” or doubling
up on points for scoring plays between the two players.
There are multiple versions of stacking, including triple stacking
with a QB, WR, and pass catching running back. You can also pair
a defense/special teams unit with a running back, with the goal
of the defense shutting down to opposing team and the corresponding
tailback earning garbage time carries late that could result in
fourth quarter TDs.
Regardless of the type of stack, most daily fantasy analysts
promote the notion of using them in large tournaments and not
cash games due to the boom or bust philosophy that is needed in
Owners looking for consistent points and safer plays in cash
games should avoid stacks because you want high floor plays, not
high ceiling tickets when playing against another person or small
This leads me back to my heated discussion with my buddy, as
I presented a new idea of using what I call “Cash Stacks”
for cash and H2H games.
The idea is simple. In a given week, if we as fantasy owners
believe Antonio Brown and his hefty price tag is the safest and
most sure point producer for wide receiver, wouldn’t logic
tell you that the guy throwing the ball to him is also a safe
After all, if we identify Brown to give at least 100 yards and
a score, then Big Ben will also give us a floor of that passing
amount, with a decent probability of him scoring fantasy points
from Bell, James, Coates, or his other weapons.
My buddy vehemently argued that diversification is needed in
cash games, as the threat of Big Ben delivering a stinker or getting
hurt will torpedo your lineup. Don’t put your eggs in one
basket; find different guys in different matchups to ensure that
one bad game won’t kill your chances of winning.
I get the logic, and in most cases I think he is correct in avoiding
cash game stacks. But I can’t help but think that we have
gone a bit too far as an industry in preaching stack avoidance
in cash games, and I think the adoption of the “Cash Stack”
In certain matchups with certain top tier players, like Matthew
Stafford and Marvin Jones this week against the Bears, I think
a Cash Stack can give you an edge over the competition, especially
in 50/50’s and multipliers.
I present this idea simply in a beta form with no empirical evidence
from past games to strengthen my argument. I do plan on putting
this concept in to practice over the next month and will review
my findings in future articles.
Until then, here are a few plays that I am targeting this week
Bear Killer: Matthew Stafford torched the
Bears for 703 yards and 7 TDs in two games last season.
Stafford threw for 385 yards and three touchdowns last week on
the road against the Packers, as the Lions were down early and
forced to pass most of the game.
I predict a different game script this week against the Bears,
with the Lions and Stafford building an early lead in the first
half with touchdown passes to Eric Ebron and Marvin Jones. Stafford
owns a solid recent history against the Bears, with seven passing
touchdowns and just over 700 passing yards in his last two matchups.
Although the Bears defense added pieces from last season, injuries
in the secondary and the recent placement of Kyle Fuller on IR
made an already subpar defense even more terrible.
The likelihood of the Bears breaking out early and milking the
clock away makes me hesitant to recommend Stafford in GPP formats.
But his high floor and efficient play in the Jim Bob Cooter offense
make him a cash play must this week.
The first two games of Trevor Siemian’s NFL career netted
wins for the Denver Broncos, but his 12 point average and one
TD pass were not very attractive for DFS players. The former Northwestern
University star found his groove week three against the Bengals
with 312 passing yards and four TDs, including a few nice deep
passes to Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders.
GPP tournament players looking for a home run play at quarterback
may want to invest in some shares of Siemian this week as the
Broncos take on Tampa Bay, a team that has giving up the fourth-most
points to opposing quarterbacks this season.
Both Matt Ryan and Carson Palmer managed to throw for over 300
yards and a couple of scores already this season, leading me to
believe that Siemian and the Broncos passing attack will go after
the subpar Buccaneers secondary on Sunday.
Fade - Matt
Ryan vs. Carolina ($7,000 on DraftKings)
Matty Ice has been a consistent force for DFS owners through
three weeks of the season, averaging 26 points per game on DrafkKings.
It has no doubt been a solid start for Ryan, however, his numbers
have been a tad bit skewed by the fact that he has played three
terrible defenses in New Orleans, Oakland, and Tampa Bay.
The Week 4 matchup against the Panthers will be the first big
test for the Falcons offense, as the Panthers have allowed the
8th fewest fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. Add in the
fact that Ryan threw for 530 yards and only one TD in two games
against the Panthers in 2015, and you have a recipe for a regression
game for Ryan and the Falcons.
The return of high profile players like Le’Veon Bell and Jamaal
Charles will likely take up the spotlight for running backs this
week, with numerous fantasy owners willing to fork out $7,500
for Bell despite the fact that he hasn’t played in a game since
November 1st of last season.
While I do not doubt the talent and opportunity of Bell, I would
rather spend my money on a player who has been the most consistent
fantasy running back this season and is reasonably priced.
Murray has been the model of consistency this year after averaging
25 points per game for the Titans. When he has struggled on the
ground against tough run defenses like the Vikings, he responded
with two passing touchdowns through the air.
When faced with less than stellar run defenses, Murray has shined
by averaging an impressive 7.3 yards per carry in two games against
Oakland and Detroit. His matchup this week against Houston is
not the greatest, but the Texans have given up three rushing TDs
on the year and JJ Watt will not be on the field.
Jonathan Stewart has been ruled out against the Falcons, opening
the door for CAP to get another start this week for the Panthers
Payne was not very impressive against the Vikings last week with
just 47 yards on 12 carries. But when you look closer at the fact
that Minnesota has yet to give up a rushing touchdown and the
Falcons have given up the 5th most fantasy points to opposing
backs, CAP this week could deliver a breakout GPP performance
at a cheap salary of $3,400.
Bill Belichick has a history of focusing on taking away the best
option of an opposing offense. For the Bills, LeSean McCoy has
been the main bright spot in an otherwise dismal season, leading
me to believe that the Pats will focus on the run and force the
Bills to beat them in the air.
While I can see Shady having a decent game despite the hoodie’s
best efforts, I think there are better options for fantasy owners
In keeping with my theme this week of the Cash Stack, I think
Marvin Jones is a solid high floor and high ceiling guy that is
perfect for cash game players.
Jones has averaged 10 targets in each of his three games this
season. And despite the coach speak from Jim Bob Cooter that he
plans on getting Golden Tate the ball more, there is a definite
connection between Stafford and Jones.
The Bears have been dismal this season, making even average quarterbacks
like Dak Prescott and Brock Osweiler look like stars. Chicago
has allowed nearly 500 receiving yards and three TDs to opposing
wide receivers, and the Lions have been one of the most prolific
passing attacks. Those two variables combined and the sheer number
of targets Jones has received make me feel confident in him as
a cash play this week.
The New Orleans Saints have given up 647 receiving yards to opposing
offenses this season, while only giving up two receiving touchdowns.
That is a surprisingly low number of receiving touchdowns for
WR’s when compared to the number of yards.
Are the Saints just terrible between the 20’s and tighten
up in the red zone? Of course not, they are a sieve in all aspects
of defense, and the majority of touchdowns are scored by opposing
This bodes well for Melvin Gordon owners this week, but I also
can see Philip Rivers and the passing game move the ball at will
and hit pay dirt at home. Travis Benjamin will receive near double
digit targets and will patrol the middle of the field with Antonio
Gates likely out.
As an OBJ owner is season long leagues, I hope I am wrong in
my prediction that Xavier Rhodes and the Vikings defense will
shut down the Giants this week.
The Vikings have allowed only one receiving touchdown in three
games and enter week four 3-0 after shutting down Cam Newton and
the Panthers. The Giants will struggle to run the ball, forcing
Eli and the passing game to move the ball in the air. The problem
with this strategy is the Vikings excel at pass defense and rushing
the QB, opening the door for a lopsided game with multiple turnovers
by New York.
A preseason breakout favorite for many, Fleener was nothing short
of a flop in his first few games of the season before breaking
out with seven catches for 109 yards and score Week 3 against
According to local beat reporters, Brees and Fleener were not
on the same page and are now just starting to build a rapport.
At $3,200, he is a great value play in all formats, but I think
he will excel for GPP players because of a high ceiling against
an injury riddled Chargers linebacking corps.
It would not surprise me to see Fleener finish as the top TE
Thomas is a game-time decision with an elbow injury in what appears
to be a nice matchup against the Colts. Although the Colts did
allow a touchdown to Eric Ebron Week 1 and Hunter Henry managed
76 yards in Week 2, the threat of Thomas being limited in this
game even if he plays is too great.
Play of the Week: Washington vs. Cleveland ($3,500
The Terelle Pryor revelation in Cleveland is exciting, but Browns
are still a terrible offense that will present defensive scoring
opportunities for the Redskins. I recommend starting the Skins
in all formats.