Losing. It is not something that anyone enjoys doing, at least no one I know. Yet, it is a fact of life if you play daily fantasy, especially football. If you play mainly in GPP leagues, you will be losing a lot in daily fantasy. If you play just 50/50 and H2H, you will lose less than you would if you played mainly GPP’s, but you will still end up losing a good deal. No matter how confident you might be in your prognosticating abilities, there will come a point where the loses makes you start to question if you should keep playing, or doubting your team building methods.
A week or two with no wins probably will not be an issue, it is a pretty long season, and even the best player knows he or she cannot win every week. It is when we get into three or more weeks of loses that things can get ugly in the self-doubt realm. While a losing streak is a good time to reevaluate your team building, it should not automatically mean you change what you do, or how you do it. You surely do need to look at what you have been doing, and make sure you are not overly relying on “gut calls” or too many contrarian picks. But, if you are basing your picks on solid stats, and reasoning, then you need to realize that football is a very unpredictable sport. No one would have predicted that John Carlson would outscore Jimmy Graham in week 11, but he did. And there was no reason to think Carlson would outscore Graham. Graham is the better player, he has a better quarterback, and he had the more favorable matchup. No matter how you evaluated things, Graham was the better option, but for that one week, Carlson was better.
Just because Carlson was better the one week, you should not suddenly view him as a superior tight end than Graham. In a similar vein, just because you had some bad weeks, does not mean you revamp how you build your teams. You certainly do need to look back and make sure you have not been making any obvious mistakes. If you have not been, then you need to chalk the loses up to bad luck. You also need to realize that football is just a highly variable sport. A running back with a great matchup can end up having a bad game if his team falls behind early; a quarterback, might get off to a great start, and end up handing-off for three quarters; you just never know.
What you do need to know, is that you have a good foundation as to how you build your teams. You also need to be able to handle losing some no matter what type of leagues you play in. If you plan on playing in GPP’s you need to plan on losing a lot. The reason that the prizes for winning GPP’s are so large is because there are a lot of teams that lose each week. As such, you need to keep your ego in check if you play primarily in GPP’s. Losing is tough, losing is not fun, and losing makes you doubt yourself. By playing in GPP’s you are setting yourself up to lose a lot more than often than you win. But, when you win, you stand to win a good deal.
Perhaps all this seems obvious, and it probably is. Yet, I have heard a lot of people complain about how they never win, or how the same people always end up winning their leagues “every week”. There is no doubt that there are some daily fantasy players who win a lot. Those same players also lose a whole lot too. Maybe one week they end up with 20 team in the money in a league, what others do not notice, is the next three weeks where they enter 20 teams in the “same” leagues and win nothing. They realize that winning, and making money in daily fantasy takes a lot of losing. They think long-term, big picture, any other cliché you want to use.
In short, losing is a big part of daily fantasy, and something you need to get used to, be able to deal with, and accept. Yes, you need to evaluate your decision each week to make sure they were the proper ones. What you do not want to do, is start changing your decision making process solely because you are not winning. If your team building processes are sound, you are in a better position to win than you do if you start making questionable choices because you are sick of losing. It is sort of a zen thing, to win, you need to accept losing.