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Yahoo Bankroll Challenge, Week 37: NFL Week 2

For more information on the Yahoo Bankroll Challenge and to read the recap from each week, click here.

After a profitable main slate in Week 1, I had supreme confidence heading into Week 2 with a relatively straightforward strategy. Three game stacks clearly stood out above the rest, and the Yahoo values were obvious. 

So with $567 in the account, I heavily increased my main slate allocation from the prior week to an unadvisable 30 percent. If my Yahoo bankroll was my only bankroll, and if I wasn’t trying to complete this challenge, there are no circumstances where more than 10 percent allocation is acceptable on a single slate. So, 30 percent sounds pretty crazy. 

My lineups underperformed, I returned $77 on $170 risked, and my bankroll is now down ~20 percent from where it started the season. 

Here’s where we sit after NFL Week 2:

NFL Week 2 balance: $567.52
NFL Week 3 balance: $474.27
NFL Week 2 YSRP balance: 1,516
NFL Week 3 YSRP balance: 1,671

Here are some of the strategies I used this week with advice on how to implement them on other DFS sites:

Strategy #1: Understanding the floor return

Each daily fantasy sport and contest type offers a different range of ROI outcomes, and that range is expanded (or narrowed) depending on your personal risk tolerance and lineup construction strategies. 

For example, if I enter $100 in entries in an NFL classic slate, my floor return, my median return, and my ceiling return are all drastically different than if I enter $100 in an NFL single game slate. It’s different than if I enter a League of Legends or MMA or MLB slate. 

I know this from my historical results tracking, but even if I didn’t have an intimate knowledge of my previous slates, the types of contests, the risk/reward levels of my lineups, and the payout structures all dictate the potential ROI ranges.

So on the surface, playing 30 percent of my Yahoo bankroll on a single slate feels extreme. To be honest, it is, but it’s nowhere nearly as extreme as if I’d entered 30 percent on the Monday night single game slate. In single game, because of the wild variance and my uniqueness approach, there’s a reasonable chance I return $0. It’s not likely, but it’s not an outcome where I’d be shocked. The median ROI range for my single game slates usually sits in that 20-45 percent zone. I'm obviously playing for big pay days that rarely hit. 

But in NFL classic where I’m not aiming for uniqueness and I’m mostly playing chalky builds with upside, my floor is much higher. In fact, I would be utterly shocked if I ever returned $0 on an NFL classic slate, even if I’m only making 3 lineups. My floor range in classic is much, much higher, too -- usually 40-60 percent. 

All of this is a long way of saying that while I entered a large portion of my bankroll in Week 2, there was a very high chance that I would get back at least 25 percent of it. For my personal situation, that potential downside was worth the possibility of exponentially growing my bankroll with 3.5 months left in the challenge.

How to implement this on FanDuel or DraftKings: Understand ranges of ROI outcomes for the various contest types you play. For contests where wins are few and far between -- but they're big! -- you have to spend way less allocation per slate to avoid bankroll ruin. But if your floor is much higher, you have the luxury to risk more on any given slate. 

NFL Week 2’s Pivotal Moment

My game stacks never truly popped off in Week 2. They did okay enough (outside of LAC, jfc) and my “Yahoo values” hit, so I was able to reach a floor outcome. In my main lineup, I used a Herbert-Cook stack, and they had a late TD that was taken off the board. That 11 points would have been enough to nearly break even on the week.

Next Steps

Knowing that I can realize a high enough lineup floor with my consistency in nailing the Yahoo values, I understand that if just one game stack “hits” per week, my ROI will be sensational this season. No major changes for Week 3 -- similar lineup constructions and playing the main slate only.

Week 3 Yahoo Tournament Takes Podcast with Kirkdiese of RotoGrinders coming soon!

For any questions about the bankroll challenge, hit up Brian on Twitter. For more information on bankroll management, contest selection, and long-term DFS strategy, read our flagship e-book, The Ultimate Guide