DraftKings Millionaire Maker Review: Week 5
Welcome to the DraftKings Millionaire Maker review, ladies, and gentlemen. This will be a weekly digest of the DraftKings' Millionaire Maker to give you an idea of what it took to win $1 million in addition to seeing what some of the top professional DFS minds did in this large-field GPP.
In Week 5 had our first “pro” winner of the DraftKings Millionaire Maker for the 2017 season. RotoGrinders co-founder ‘GrindersCal' won this week's edition of the Milly Maker with 217.42 points. Normally a max-enter player with 150 lineups into the Milly Maker, GrindersCal entered just 30 times this week. In a week with several “chalky” players hitting value, what took him to the top was an under-the-radar stack of San Francisco Quarterback Brian Hoyer and Tight End George Kittle. It's commonly said that you need a little luck to go your way to win the Milly Maker and this week was no different. With fewer than 20 seconds remaining in the SF-IND game, Hoyer found Kittle for a touchdown to tie the game and send it into overtime. Hoyer was reasonably popular at 7.7% as many chose to pay up at skill positions, but Kittle offered a ton of separation for Cal's lineup at 1.3% ownership. Those points put GrindersCal into a big-time sweat position heading into the Green Bay-Dallas afternoon cap. In order to come from behind, GrindersCal needed a huge game from rookie running back Aaron Jones. With Ty Montgomery out, Jones found himself thrust into the spotlight and was exceptional against the Cowboys' defense, running for 125 yards and a touchdown. Jones found himself at just 5.1% ownership as news was murky during the week with speculation Montgomery, Jones, and Williams all might see snaps. The speculation of a timeshare scared some away and that benefited Cal as he got workhorse usage from Aaron Jones and exposure to one of the highest team totals on the slate.
So that was the foundation of GrinderCal's success this Sunday, but he got things started with a bang, too. AJ Green hauled in a 77-yard touchdown on the Buffalo Bills early on in the Sunday action en route to a 189-yard performance. His 33.90 DK points were among the highest on the slate. As I mentioned earlier, a good bit of chalk hit, but none was more impactful than San Diego running back Melvin Gordon. He was priced at just $6,000 and 15.3% of owners took advantage of this, including GrindersCal. Gordon had 105 yards on the ground in addition to six receptions for two touchdowns. That was good for 37.30 DK points to be a “must-own” in order to win the million dollar prize. You might recognize the names Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. as being two of the best wide receivers in the game, and due to Gordon being underpriced and the Hoyer-Kittle combination totaling just $7,200, GrindersCal was able to fit them on his roster. Despite suffering what very well may be a season-ending injury, Beckham Jr. had an impressive day at the office with 97 receiving yards and a touchdown. Brown pieced together 10 catches for 157 yards, which is impressive in its own right, particularly because his quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw five interceptions, so a fair number of drives stalled before they could reach their end goal. The last two pieces of the million-dollar lineup were the Miami Dolphins defense and Colts' wide receiver Donte Moncrief. The Dolphins were somewhat surprisingly only 7% owned despite facing a Marcus Mariota-less Tennessee Titans offense. Backup quarterback Matt Cassel had significant trouble with the Dolphins' defense, resulting in two fumbles and a defensive touchdown for Miami. In most weeks, if you get a 20-point output from your defense, you are far ahead of the field, and clearly this week was no different. To round out the lineup, Moncrief was the one “dud”. He had just three receptions for 32 yards for 6.20 DK points. This might sound surprising that Moncrief was in the winning lineup, but let's look a little further. With so many high priced WRs in Beckham Jr., Brown, and Green, salary savings were of top priority for GrindersCal. Moncrief cost just $3,900, which led to him having the ability to roster such a stud trio.
Although we normally break down one of the top pros of the week, GrindersCal falls into that category, so we'll just break down his overall construction. He was close to yet another huge score. He had a 2v2 with his million dollar winning lineup, swapping Gordon and Moncrief for Dolphins' RB Jay Ajayi and Seattle running back JD McKissic. It's worth pointing out that GrindersCal's move to play Ajayi in this lineup would be because you'll recall that he had the Dolphins in his defensive spot. For game script reasons, it is a wise move to stack RB with your defense. Why? Well, if your defense is standing strong, that generally speaking means your team will be in the lead. What happens when you're leading? You run the ball to drain the clock. On 6/30 lineups, Cal used the Dolphins' defense and on four of them, he either paired it with Ajayi. Feel free to think about that stacking method as you make your lineups. If you look at GrindersCal's 30 lineups, you'll notice that you don't always have to hit the nail on the head. TY Hilton at $6,000 was a popular choice in the Milly Maker at over 30% owned, but Cal had him on just 3/30 lineups. Many of Cal's lineups were contrarian and he was rewarded with a huge payday.
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