I have always been a big fan of cash games and think they can be a key part of a highly profitable DFS player’s arsenal.
But to be a good cash game player, you need to understand the basics and avoid common mistakes.
Here are my top tips to help you be as profitable as possible early on this NFL season.
4 Cash Game Tips For FanDuel
1. Play Head-to-Head Games
If you have read cash game strategy articles in the past, I am sure you have read that head-to-head games (H2Hs) are your friend. There has never been a better time than now to prove this to be true. With the mass influx of people into daily fantasy sports – and more specifically NFL DFS – H2Hs should be your primary focus when it comes to game selection. This is because H2Hs are the first place many new players go when they select their first contests to enter. This, in turn, equates to easier competition for experienced players, which is always good for your return on investment.
Another way H2Hs help your ROI is that you can really diversify your investments and play against tons of different opponents and lineups. For example, if your cash lineup did not have the greatest score one week, it might not cash in larger 50/50s or double ups where you’re playing against a field of contestants, rather than just one player. On the other hand, if you are playing H2Hs, even if your lineup does not have its strongest week, you will usually at least beat a few people and recoup some of your loses. It might not seem like a big deal, but over the long run this return adds up.
2. Posting Games
I mentioned above how I think H2Hs are the way to go in regards to cash games. However, I am not telling you to go and grab games that people have already posted. In fact, I’d recommend you do the opposite. The main reason why grabbing existing H2H games is a bad idea is because a very large % of people who post games are good players, also known as sharks. We are doing everything we can to avoid the sharks and play the fish!
I would suggest that you post games to the lobby instead of picking up games from others. You might be thinking “Jordan, aren’t sharks just going to take the games that I post?” They could, but right now high volume players are not really struggling to find fish to prey on and won’t be searching nearly as hard as they normally would be. Just in case, though, I suggest posting only a few games at a time. This is good for two reasons. One, you cannot get too much of your action scooped in case a shark does decide to take your games, since you’re not posting them all at once. The second reason to slowly post your H2Hs is that some new players will choose the person with only few games posted rather than a huge set. (E.g. someone would take one of your $5×2 H2Hs compared to someone posting $5×47). Just make sure to check back constantly to make sure you have games posted at all times.
3. Play Multiple Slates
I am someone who plays one lineup per slate and just go all-in on it. I know some of the top guys like to “hedge” or play multiple lineups per slate to protect them and not completely fade a certain player. I don’t think this is a bad strategy by any means, but it is not one I prefer. Instead, I like to play multiple slates to “protect” myself.
For example, the Thursday slate is one of my favorites to play for NFL DFS. I usually play about 25% of my total entries in the Thursday slate and I feel this is a great way to get exposure to a few different players than I might be able to on the main Sunday slate alone. One great thing about the Thursday slate is that you will get tons of people who make really risky plays. They will assume a player is going to be out, or that an injured player will play, and this is something you can take big advantage of! These late announcements don’t always break in a player’s favor. Playing multiple slates is another way to “hedge” your investments and also limit your risk in losing too much in any given week.
4. Increase Your Volume During the “Hot” DFS Months
I am lucky enough to be friends with some of the top guys in the industry and bounce ideas off of them. One thing I found out that really struck me by surprise was just how much emphasis they put on the “seasons” of DFS. What that means is, there are certain months that are gold for making money in DFS. A perfect example is the beginning of NFL season. You have a bunch of new people coming into DFS and looking to play. Most of these people saw a commercial for a FanDuel promo code on T.V. (one of the hundreds that run every Sunday) and want to try it out.
These first few weeks when a major sport starts is a great time to play more volume in cash than you normally would. Taking advantage of the market is KEY in daily fantasy sports. I am not telling you to play 50% of your bankroll, but if you usually play 5%, I would recommend bumping it up to closer to 10-15% during these times when new players are flooding the market.
I hope you enjoyed these tips and tricks and that they help you build a bigger bankroll! If you have any questions you can always find me on Twitter @ThatGuyNamedJoR. Thanks for reading and good luck grinding!
David Gonos spent 5 years as a CBSSports.com Senior Fantasy Writer and three more years writing with SI.com. Over the past 17 years, his work has been published on NFL.com, MLB.com, FanDuel, FoxSports.com and USA Today. Since 2001, he has been tracking down the Top 50-plus Free Fantasy Football Draft Tools online. You can contact David Gonos here.