Using Schedules, Rest days and Injuries in Daily Fantasy Sports
You’ll find much advice online about using statistics in daily fantasy sports and of course this should be the most dominant factor when selecting your line-ups. However, every good fantasy contestant will be looking at how a particular player is performing both over the season and in recent games. There are other edges you can find in daily fantasy sport, this done by looking at the schedules of teams, the amount of rest days the team will have and the impact an injury might have on a player.
In this article, you’ll find some general advice about using these factors in your roster selection for daily fantasy sports before looking at some specific scenarios that might affect both your football and baseball selections.
When looking at an individual player, their performance will be greatly influenced by the performance of the rest of the team, where in most cases a good team performance will aid that player. For example, the performance of a running back in football will be influenced by how long the rest of the offense will help him stay on the field, and how quickly the defense can get the offense back onto the field, as well as obviously how he plays himself. So, in general you’ll want to be picking players from those teams who are in the best shape.
A look at the schedule will help. Teams who have had more rest days will have an edge in this respect, but you should also look at the amount of travel. A team in the middle of a home stand will have an advantage over another who has travelled a long way across the country to make the game. Also look for those spots where the home team have actually done a lot more travelling than the visitors – it can be that home advantage is somewhat negated in this scenario.
Also look at the individual player. If a player has been rested for a particular game, this might be a big advantage as they’ll be raring to go. If however a player has missed a game due to injury this is a completely different scenario as it could be that they are still not fully fit entering the game, or will need a game or two to get back up to speed.
Scheduling has its own particular advantages in football. With the games generally being a week apart or more you wouldn’t think that the schedule gives team’s big advantages. However, a team playing on a Monday night can have a very different week from a team playing on a Sunday afternoon. Consider that the Monday night team may not travel back until Tuesday and then possibly have to be on the road again Saturday, making for only three days preparation for a game. The Sunday afternoon team might travel back that day and two full days of extra preparation. Obviously a team may play on a Thursday night, giving them 3 or 4 more days preparation time for the following Sunday, or even be coming back from a bye week, where they’ll have two weeks to prepare for a game. Look for these spots in football and take advantage.
When it comes to rest, by far the most important player in this respect is the starting pitcher. If the pitcher is playing on a shorter than normal rest, then he might not be playing to his usual standard. You’ll be able to find out how a starting pitcher plays on each amount of days rest at many of the leading sports stats sites.
Another advantage in baseball is that a particularly straightforward game the day before can give a team a number of advantages. Consider a matchup where the starting pitcher throws for a complete game. This will mean that the opposition didn’t have many hits, giving the batters on the team an easy time in the field, keeping them somewhat fresher. The bullpen will have also had a much easier time – a day off! All in all this is an ideal situation to pick players for that team the following day.
Good old fashioned statistics are definitely the life blood when it comes to daily fantasy sports and I wouldn’t encourage anyone to pick a player just because he is fresher or the team is on fire if his statistics show that he isn’t that good. However, if you have a close decision to make between two players, then you should most certainly be looking at some of the factors described above in giving you that edge – that edge possibly being enough to grab you some vital extra dollars.
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