Welcome to the RotoWire & FanDuel Championship, in a special Week 1 edition that is going live Tuesday. From now on, the posts will surface on Friday with a recap portion and a combination of value picks and high risk/reward plays for the upcoming week. This special Week 1 Tuesday version of the post will solely focus on the recap portion and go a little more in-depth with the DFS action from Week 1.
Week 1 Championship Recaps
My strategy for the contest was to start by targeting a player I felt was undervalued for Week 1. In this case, that was Spencer Ware given the absence of Jamaal Charles (knee). I prefer to have a connection between my quarterback (Drew Brees topped my board) and a wide receiver and decided to save some money with Willie Snead instead of Brandin Cooks. The strategy worked out and I turned it into a fourth place finish in Week 1.
Led by a strong group of running backs (Spencer Ware and DeAngelo Williams), David Soda (sodes3434) managed to supplement them with the connection of Drew Brees and Brandin Cooks to take Week 1 of the competition by a hefty margin, finishing with 184.52 points on the week. Rounding out the top five were Andrew Fiorentino (akf1986) with 165.56, Joel Bartilotta (joelbartilotta) with 162.10, myself (crispy272001) with 161.32 and James Seltzer (schweppy23) with 156.40.
Moving on to the user competition, doublee posted the top score in Week 1. Led by the exact same core group of Brees, Ware, Williams and Cooks, he managed to edge out the top expert score by 0.70 points, finishing with 185.22 in total. The top five was rounded out by bsoutlaw (177.20) sxm_gal (175.58) and bengalbuck (169.50), who utilized his five entries well, putting all five into a tie for fourth.
The highest RotoWire expert in the competition was Jeff Erickson (jefferickson), who finished the week with 141.22 points to place 85th among entrants. All 84 entries that scored above him will receive an entry into the Week 11 Free Play contest.
Week 1 Fantasy Scoring Leaders by Position
Instead of the normal value plays and high risk/reward in the coming posts, this will focus on the standout performances at each position in Week 1.
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Andrew Luck (8700) – Priced equally with Drew Brees on the week, Luck produced the most fantasy points among quarterbacks (35.5) in Week 1, passing for 385 yards and four touchdowns while adding another 21 points on the ground and a two-point conversion for good measure. For his part, Brees was second among quarterbacks in scoring with 31.42 points on the week.
Alex Smith (7000) – Well down the list of quarterbacks, Smith rode a second-half comeback and a rushing touchdown in overtime to a 29.02 total, the third-most points in Week 1 among his fellow gunslingers.
DeAngelo Williams (7,100) led the way in Week 1 with 32.1 points, topped off by a rushing touchdown late in Monday’s contest against Washington to seal it. A reasonably priced running back, he easily outpaced all of the top-priced running backs on the board. Second on the list was Spencer Ware, who finished the day with 29.4 points and will be highlighted more in the Value Play section below.
Spencer Ware (5,400) – Certainly worthy of filling in both of these running back sections, Ware nipped at the heels of Williams, finishing Sunday’s game with a whopping seven grabs for 129 yards in addition to his 70 yards on the ground and a rushing touchdown. The news that Jamaal Charles (knee) wouldn’t be ready for Week 1 left the door open for Ware and he certainly took advantage of the opportunity, finishing second among all players at the position. Charles’ status for Week 2 remains in doubt, potentially pushing Ware into the spotlight for at least one more contest. Even when the former does return to the field, Ware’s showing may be enough to keep him involved in a rotation.
Many of the top receivers came to play in Week 1, with A.J. Green (8,200) notching the second-most points (30) and Antonio Brown (9,300) following closely behind in third with 28.6. However, the day belonged to Brandin Cooks (7,600), who edged out Green’s effort with 30.4 points, thanks in large part to a 98-yeard touchdown pass in the third quarter of Sunday’s contest against the Raiders. He finished the day with six receptions for 143 yards and two touchdowns while adding 11 rushing yards to his point total. Drew Brees figures to connect with the speedy wideout on a number of deep passes this season.
Speaking of New Orleans wide receivers, Willie Snead (6400) did just fine for himself Sunday, hauling in nine passes for 172 yards and a touchdown. While it’s nearly impossible for the two to both have this kind of output on a weekly basis, the weak Saints defense could result in a lot of shootouts for New Orleans this season. Although there was little question about it, Snead has certainly proven himself worthy of the No. 2 spot on the Saints’ depth chart behind Cooks. The Saints travel to face the Giants in Week 2, a defense that had a good Week 1 against Dak Prescott and the Cowboys.
Top Scorers/ Value Play
While there weren’t any huge performances among the tight ends in Week 1, it was a tight end who likely went nearly unowned that scored the most points. Andrew Luck utilized his tight ends heavily this weekend, with Dwayne Allen (5500) checking in second among tight ends with 15.30 points. He was outdone only by teammate Jack Doyle (5200) on the week, who managed to find the end zone on two of his three receptions Sunday, finishing with 35 receiving yards as well for an overall point total of 17.0 on the day.
Week 2 Competition
I hope you’ve enjoyed my recap of Week 1’s DFS action, and keep an eye out for a post coming Friday that will include a shorter recap section matched with some value plays for Week 2’s games. As a reminder, the Rotowire & Fanduel Fantasy Football Championship Week 2 competition is now open and can be joined using this link. All you have to do is finish ahead of all three RotoWire experts (Jeff Erickson, Derek VanRiper and Kevin Payne) to earn an entry into the Week 11 Free Play contest, where first place will take home $1000 and a one-year subscription to RotoWire.