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DFS FootballAuthor: Scott Jack

Date Last Updated:  January 8th, 2016

Notes: See bottom of page for weekly NFL preview articles or click here. You may also want to view our college football fantasy picks.

 

Easily the most popular DFS – daily fantasy NFL attracts thousands of players each week during the season, including some seven-figure payout contests.

DraftKings and FanDuel both run daily football contests with seven-figure prize pools. Many weeks during the season – DraftKings hosts the “Millionaire Maker” where one lucky player will win $1,000,000 in cash on a $20 buy-in.

You’re going to find the biggest guaranteed tournaments for the NFL. In fact – some of the events will have more than 100,000 entries, which is insane. Obviously, you’ll need close to a perfect line-up to win a big GPP contest, but the payouts are big.

Let’s not waste anytime and get right into the NFL one week fantasy contest rules and scoring.

The full scoring below is from DraftKings, but I’ll also discuss the scoring differences at FanDuel, which are only small differences. Those are the two biggest daily fantasy football sites, but you should also check out Fantasy Aces. Once you know how to play at one site you’ll be fine at the others, as the scoring differences are small.

Best real money weekly fantasy football sites

  • DraftKings: Offers contests where the winner can win $1,000,000, has a $600 welcome bonus and the best line-up requirements.
  • FanDuel: Biggest real money DFS site, specialty DFS NFL contests at all buy-in levels and a big sign-up bonus.
  • Fantasy Aces: The best of the best outside the Big 2 listed above. Smaller and more personalized service.

DFS NFL rules and scoring for one week fantasy games

Editor’s Note: The scoring and roster descriptions are from DraftKings. Scott has also noted some differences between DraftKings and FanDuel.

The rules are simple, but the scoring can take a few weeks to adjust to if you’re new to playing daily fantasy football.

Players are assigned $50,000 to build a line-up consisting of nine players (Roster restrictions are listed below). Your team needs to have players from at least two teams and you also need to take players from at least two separate games.

The roster restrictions are as followed:

  • QB / RB1 / RB2 / WR1 / WR2 / WR3 / TE / Flex (RB/WR/TE) / DST (Defense + Special Teams)

Defense is important, but you’re going to win contests by selecting a strong offense in DFS NFL.

DraftKings NFLLet’s take a look at the scoring for the offense first.

  • Passing TD = 4 Points
  • Passing Yards (25) = 1 Point (0.04/points per passing yard)
  • Rushing TD = 6 Points
  • Rushing Yards (10) = 1 Point (0.10/points per rushing yard)
  • Receiving TD = 6 Points
  • Reception = 1 Point
  • Receiving Yards (10) = 1 Point (0.10/points per receiving yard)
  • 300+ Passing Yards Bonus = 3 Points
  • 100+ Rushing Yards Bonus = 3 Points
  • 100+ Receiving Yards Bonus = 3 Points
  • Punt/Kick-Off Return TD = 6 Points
  • Offensive Fumble Recovery TD = 6 Points
  • 2 Point Conversion = 2 Points
  • Fumble Lost & Interceptions = -1 Point

That’s the offensive scoring – now we’ll see how the defensive scoring shakes up.

FanDuel-DFS-NFL

  • Sack = 1 Point
  • Interception & Fumble Recovery = 2 Points
  • Punt/Kick-Off Return TD = 6 Points
  • Interception & Fumble Recovery TD = 6 Points
  • Blocked Punt/FG TD = 6 Points
  • Safety = 2 Points
  • Blocked Kick = 2 Points
  • 0 Points Allowed = 10 Points
  • 1-6 Points Allowed = 7 Points
  • 7-13 Points Allowed = 4 Points
  • 14-20 Points Allowed = 1 Point
  • 21-27 Points Allowed = 0 Points
  • 28-34 Points Allowed = -1 Points
  • 35+ Points Allowed = -4 Points

As you can see – defenses are very important. Taking the minimum priced defense is often a huge mistake. Sure, you can spend a bit more on your offensive players, but you’re not going to win most contests if your defense has a negative score.

The following daily fantasy NFL scoring is from DraftKings, but FanDuel is similar.

FanDuel only adds +0.5 points per reception (PPR) and they don’t offer the offensive bonuses like DK. FanDuel also has kickers on the roster, which adds a bit more depth to your line-up selections each week.

There’s no flex position at FanDuel though, the flex is replaced by the kicker position, so I actually prefer the DK rosters over FD rosters personally, because I find the same few kickers are chosen at FD every week anyways.

There’s more ways to differentiate your line-up with the flex position in my opinion.

Here’s a screenshot of what the DraftKings NFL roster selection page looks like. When you’re ready to play real money daily fantasy football – head over to DraftKings and get a cash bonus when you start playing.

DraftKings-NFL-Roster-Selection
Always check the complete scoring for DFS NFL contests at every DFS site you play with because there are often differences that can make a big impact on how you select your team. For example, WR’s have more value at DK than FD because of the full PPR.

DFS NFL strategy and tips

So, you’re ready to play real money daily fantasy NFL contests? These tips and strategies will help you build a winning line-up.

Your cash game and double-up contest strategy will obviously need to be different than your strategy in big GPP contests.

In cash games or smaller contests – the goal is to target consistent and dependable players for your roster. In GPP’s you want to take more risks to differentiate your line-up from the thousands of other line-ups in the same contest.

Some positions are also more important than others.

QB’s are always important and I typically spend on my QB unless I’m convinced a lower priced option has a match-up that I can’t avoid. You always want to hit the 300+ passing yards bonus at DK, so always target a passer who will air it out all game.

Regardless of the contest format – I always select a WR or TE from the same team as my QB. For example, if I take Matt Ryan I’m always going to pair him with Julio Jones. Scoring points from the QB and WR at the same time is an ideal situation.

Some players may disagree, but I never target a RB from the same team as my QB.

There aren’t too many 3-down bruising RB’s in the league anymore, but if you’re playing at DK you want to hit the bonus for 100+ rushing yards. A RB that catches the football like Matt Forte has a lot of value on sites that offer points per reception.

TE is a position where you need to feel things out each season. Some years when the big TE’s like Gronkowski and Graham are producing at a high level, you have to select them, but last season (2014) the cheaper TE’s were much more valuable.

I also typically save some roster money by selecting 2 cheap WR’s every week that have ideal match-ups. It often takes a week for DFS sites to catch up to injuries or depth chart changes, so finding a cheap WR or two that can produce isn’t too difficult.

I prefer sites that use the flex position. For the flex I typically go WR or TE. If I really like two cheap TE’s I throw one in at the flex spot and save more money for my RB’s and WR’s. Alternatively – I’ll target a WR before I target a RB.

RB’s can score plenty of points when they have a big game, but they come at a cost and WR’s I find are easier to target. It takes one long TD reception to put up an elite score for a WR and the fact they earn PPR can turn a bad game into a decent score.

Good luck with your DFS NFL this season and don’t forget to come back for our weekly daily fantasy football picks.

 

Weekly Studs and Duds Articles (This is the list from 2015. It will be updated to weekly in 2016 as the games are played)

Week 1 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 2 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 3 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 4 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 5 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 6 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 7 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 8 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 9 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 10 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 11 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 12 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 13 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 14 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 15 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 16 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

Week 17 NFL Fantasy Studs and Duds

 

 

Weekly DraftKings Picks

Week 1 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 2 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 3 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 4 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 5 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 6 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 7 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 8 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 9 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 10 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 11 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 12 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 13 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 14 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 15 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 16 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Week 17 DraftKings Picks and Preview

Listed below you will find our strategy articles (and contest related info) about weekly fantasy football contests. We will be adding more articles throughout the year, so please keep checking back.