Ask The Shark: Spreading Your Volume

Statistics are the core of playing daily fantasy sports, and those not utilizing this data to the fullest extent possible are likely leaving money on the table. Goals and assists are obvious and at the forefront of one’s decision-making in DFS soccer, but it’s the peripheral stats that add context to situations that wouldn’t easily be seen by just looking at the scoresheet of a match.

The newly released soccer stats package here at RotoWire bridges this gap better than no other. Player game logs on DraftKings or FanDuel are definitely useful, but can’t be sorted, compared or put into context with the match as a whole. While the resources at WhoScored and FourFourTwo can get quite in-depth, they aren’t geared towards a DFS-playing audience and lack the ability to drill down to what really matters.

Raw data, in and of itself, is only helpful in a limited capacity when using it to predict future outcomes. A striker scored a hat-trick last game; a fullback has put in 14 crosses over the past four games; a midfielder has created seven chances over the past three games. What can you even really do with this information? Statistics mean nothing until they’re put into context. Away versus home; opponent strength; minutes played; formation used. There are a multitude of variables that need to be taken into account when weighing the performance of a player.

Sometimes the makeup of a team’s lineup can drastically affect the output of certain players. This is especially true when determining set-piece responsibilities in an upcoming match. Being able to view player statistics when X+Y are in the starting lineup versus X and Y individually can easily be the difference between going with heavy exposure for a given player or fading them completely. Looking at these player trends over the course of a full season, or just the past few games, or on a per 90-minute average can give your research much more needed context.

If you’re analyzing lineups of the “sharks” in your contests and wondering “why were so many on this player?” when he wasn’t even on your radar for that slate, maybe having a better view of the underlying statistics will shed some light on these picks. Definitely try out the new RotoWire soccer stats package and it just may help you find these smart player selections on a consistent basis. Onto this week’s question!

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