After tonight’s Monday night football game we will be a quarter of the way into the NFL season and 31 percent through most of the season-long leagues. Talk about time flying. The good news is that DFS runs through the playoffs and provides the players with multiple extra weeks of making some money. With that said, don’t miss your chance at becoming a millionaire by playing the millionaire maker on Sunday. See link below.

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DFS has grown immensely since the start of the last NFL season. Many new players who were once skeptical have expanded their horizons and given daily games a shot. At first it can be overwhelming and you may think it’s going to take you a ton of time to get the hang of it, but much like anything in life, practice makes perfect. Or at least close to perfect, as we all know nothing in life is truly perfect. That being said, I’m relatively new to DFS myself, playing seriously for only a little over a year now, so I can definitely relate to those who are just starting off. One thing is for sure, I’ve put in a lot of time studying the work of some of the best players in the industry, reading books, and conversing with some of the great minds in the game. If there is anything the readers of this weekly column take out of my articles, it should be that. If you want to improve, put in the effort and time as there are plenty of helpful resources and tools available to help you get better.

Much like every other week, I’ll be sharing some tips of things I’ve learned along the way. The first thing I’ll go over is something I’ve been practicing this season. I know prices usually come out a week before and people are excited to start banging out lineups, believe me I am too. However, hold off on creating lineups until later in the week. Remember, you want to gather as much information throughout the week before creating and finalizing your lineups. Injuries, bye weeks, and the general public’s perception/opinion of players are all factors that come into play when building your lineups. What I like to do is export all of the players into an excel sheet and highlight the players that I am interested in that particular week. I then do my own homework and research before reading anyone else’s work. Once I have done all that, I’ll start reading up on players that are being talked about, what players people are on, and what players people are off. This creates guidance to contrarian plays, players I may have overlooked, and also confirmation to some of the players I was already on. The more you know before creating lineups, the better it is for you. Once you’ve accumulated all of this information, then you can start creating your lineups.

Creating lineups later in the week also prevents you from messing around with your lineups, which leads me to my next topic, tinkering. This is something that a lot of times can cause a person to lose tons of money, and other times, it can win people some money, but in most instances I go by the saying “think long, think wrong”. You see, if you set your lineups prematurely, you’re going with your gut instincts and what you know at that point in time. Then you start listening and reading others opinion and you start tinkering with your lineups. Some of these last minute changes have caused people hundreds and even thousands of dollars. Trust me, I know by experience. So once you’ve done all your research and set your lineup, leave as is.

This leads me into my next and final topic for this week. While I just advised you not to tinker with your lineups after they are set, there are some instances where making changes just makes sense. For example, say you’re deep in a big GPP and have a player left in Monday night’s game. If teams ahead of you have players remaining and you believe it’s the same player that you have left, then at that point it may be wise for you to swap him out for another player who can get you some fantasy points. I’ll give you my example, last season I had Sammy Watkins in a Monday night football game left and was trying to move up the ladder. Knowing he was a popular play that week, I had the option to swap him out for Robert Woods. I did not do so at the time, but looking back at it, I could have swapped him out and maybe made a couple of extra bucks. Yes, you’re taking a risk because there’s a reason the player you have in your lineup is in there, but, if you’re trying to win it all, you may have to switch it up and be contrarian. Another time I would consider making late minute adjustments is in head-to-head tournaments. Most people create their lineups and move on. If you play head-to-heads regularly, this can be something you use as an edge. Say you’re leading your opponent going into Monday night and you have a specific player in your roster and he has a player of the same position that hasn’t played. By simple math, you have an idea of who that player he has is. You simply add up all his players’ salaries and subtract it from your starting salary of $50,000 and can figure it out from there. If this is not a savvy player, chances are you’ll be right and you can simply swap out your player and play the same player he’s playing, leaving him no shot to beat you. The only other time I’d be swapping out a player is if he’s not playing for whatever reason.

Until next week!