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Yahoo Bankroll Challenge, Week 6: A New Frontier

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

Super Bowl week was utterly insane with the amount of content we were producing, so I didn’t get a chance to write a weekly report on my bankroll challenge progress. You didn’t miss much, honestly; my bankroll fluctuated a few dollars each way and essentially ended the week about where I started. 

I also didn’t play much either just because of the packed Super Bowl schedule, as I only entered three slates the entire week. There’s a lesson in here, too, about playing DFS wisely so it aligns with your personal and professional schedule.

However, we were presented with an unforeseen treat when Yahoo announced they would offer single game NFL DFS contests for the first time for the Super Bowl. A completely new game type against inexperienced players for an event I’ve been dissecting for two weeks? LFG.

Week 6 starting $ balance: $9.85
Week 6 ending $ balance: $16.85
Week 6 starting YSRP balance: 51
Week 6 ending YSRP balance: 63

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

Strategy #1: Taking advantage of new game types

DFS sites are always trying out new game types in an effort to appeal to a wider variety of players, and while Yahoo hasn’t been nearly as creative as FanDuel or DraftKings in this area, kudos to them for launching single game contests for the Super Bowl. 

The first step? I needed to check out the lineup requirements, salary ranges, and scoring to see how similar this format would be to the single game contests on FD and DK. With 0.5 PPR scoring, five roster spots, and no CPT/MVP multiplier, Yahoo’s single game format is eerily close to FanDuel's offering. Given what I know about FD’s single game strategy, I could easily apply most of my knowledge for Yahoo’s Super Bowl contests.

There were two big differences, however: 1) there were DSTs instead of Ks, and 2) the salary range was REALLY wide. Point 1 is whatever, we can always adapt to the pesky inclusion of kickers and DSTs, but Point 2 was super intriguing. 

On FanDuel, Mahomes’ salary was 27.5 percent of the total salary cap for the big game. At $81 on Yahoo, you had to give up 40.5 percent of your allotted cap for the Chiefs QB. The cheapest players were also cheaper, relatively speaking: 5 percent of the cap on Yahoo compared to 8 percent of the cap on FanDuel. This significantly altered the optimal approach to lineup construction. 

So, now knowing how to alter my usual FD strategy based on the salary differences, I knew I’d have an edge over a majority of players in any Yahoo single game contests I played. 

I entered three lineups into the $1 117-player league for the Super Bowl, and one of my lineups finished 2nd despite not having the optimal MVP and going with a KC-heavy approach (whoops). It goes to show that with a greater understanding of the rules over your opponents, it doesn’t require perfection to be profitable. 

How to implement this on FanDuel or DraftKings: Investigate the “other” contest types on FD and DK e.g. 3-Man Challenge, Snake Draft, Tiers, etc. The smaller prize pools won’t attract professional players, and you’ll see an incredible number of inexperienced players in these “alternate” contests. Investigate the rules thoroughly, see how they compare to the usual contest types, and understand where the edge may lie against players who don’t fully understand the game they’re playing. 

Week 6’s Pivotal Moment

The NFL single game cash of $7 certainly qualifies as a pivotal moment since it is my largest win to date in the challenge. I alternated wins and losses in NHL for the past two weeks, but I now sit at the apex of my bankroll thus far at $16.85. 

Next Steps

Biggest bankroll so far, yet I’m still just 17 percent of the way to my next mini-goal of $100 before MLB starts. With 47 days until Opening Day, I’ll need to profit around $2 per day in order to reach my goal. Obviously this can be accelerated if I win a couple of leagues, but the point remains: I must keep grinding hard and maximize all edges in order to get where I need to be.

On another note, this week marks the fifth and final “qualifying” H2H in PGA, so next week I’ll be able to play PGA H2Hs against the worst opponents. Just another addition to the bankroll growing machine. 

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