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A $200K Top Prize Is Up For Grabs On Underdog Fantasy

By Kevin English 10:18am EST 1/11/23



In December, we released an article detailing Underdog’s premier playoff contest: The Gauntlet.

It was great. If you missed it, imagine: 10-round best ball drafts that last the entirety of the postseason. All for a reasonable price of $25 per team.

Well, today I have some bad news:

That contest — with a 45,216-team cap — has filled.

But wait!

The good folks at Underdog recently rolled out a brand new playoff contest with the same exact format. Except this time, there’s a $200K grand prize (previously $100K). Now, everyone will draft knowing all 14 playoff teams, seeded as follows:


AFC

1. Chiefs (1st round bye)

2. Bills

3. Bengals

4. Jags

5. Chargers

6. Ravens

7. Dolphins


NFC

1. Eagles (1st round bye)

2. 49ers

3. Vikings

4. Bucs

5. Cowboys

6. Giants

7. Seahawks


Those top seeds are worth focusing on for a moment. From my December piece:

This contest includes 4 separate rounds. You need to win each of the first 3 rounds — 2 in 6-person leagues, with the 3rd an 8-teamer — in order to advance to a 157-person Super Bowl final. If you’re too light on live players in the Wild Card round, well… you’re likely dead money.

So… no roster-stuffing Eagles and Chiefs.

Now, looking at ADP, we’re going to dish on players and stacks to target.

Note: For full contest rules and more, visit Underdog Fantasy. For info on playoff odds and more, visit our recent article on the FFPC Playoff Challenge. We also have you covered with full Playoff Rankings — plus Wild Card Rankings.


Stacks

If you draft on Underdog, you’ll notice stacks are commonplace. And it makes sense. You need to beat out a large field, while stacking affords access to a higher ultimate ceiling.

Just be realistic about the stacks you can attain.

Josh Allen is most commonly the 1.01. You can pair him with Gabe Davis (ADP: 19.1), Dawson Knox (ADP: 37.8) or a RB… but Stefon Diggs (ADP: 7th overall) is off the table.

Here are some realistic stacks:

QB Josh Allen — WR Gabe Davis, Bills

This has nothing to do with Davis’ 201-yard, 4-TD game against Kansas City in the 2022 postseason. (I promise.) This is about Davis volatile profile. Remember, we’re playing best ball here. Plus, we like Buffalo’s chances of being the only team to play 4 games. That gives an auto-nod to Allen — fantasy’s QB1 in PPG — as the top target. Knox is certainly in play for double stacks, too.

QB Patrick Mahomes — TE Travis Kelce — WR Mecole Hardman, Chiefs

I’m happy to take a stand on Buffalo reaching the Super Bowl. But again, unless you get the top pick, Josh Allen is likely unstackable.

Mahomes supplies a little breathing room, as he typically comes off the board 2nd or 3rd. While you have to dance around the Wild Card bye, we like the shootout potential that’d await him vs. L.A. and Buffalo (per our projections). Kelce has an ADP of 8.5, but I was able to land him 11th overall in a draft on Tuesday. Two teams chased stacks ahead of me — Hurts-Brown and the next pairing on this list — which helped Kelce fall.

Hardman certainly isn’t necessary. But I think he qualifies as someone to sprinkle in as a round 10 pick given his big-play ability. For his career, Hardman has 11 TDs of 20+ yards. We’ll see about the abdomen injury that’s kept him out since Week 9. Reading the tea leaves, though, I’m projecting him as in for the Divisional Round.

QB Joe Burrow — WR Ja’Marr Chase, Bengals

Burrow checks in with an ADP of 6.2, so you can generally land him anywhere in Round 1. While we have the Bengals playing only 2 games, it would come as no surprise if the Bengals make another Super Bowl run. Chase enters having just posted 8-86-1 (31% target share) on the Ravens defense.


One-Offs

RB Saquon Barkley, Giants

We project the Giants to pull off a mini upset in Minnesota. If it happens, Barkley will turn out to be a major steal at his current ADP in early Round 6. Even if the Giants lose, though, Barkley should help propel you out of your initial 6-person contest. Rested in Week 18, the 25-year-old will be fresh against a beatable Vikings defense. They sit just 19th in rush DVOA; 19th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs.

Note: Barkley also posted 27 fantasy points against the Vikings in Week 16, boosted by 8 catches and 1 score. Our current projections have him for 23 touches.

WR Keenan Allen, Chargers

Mike Williams missed practice on Wednesday. We’ll see about his availability the rest of the week. But with an ADP in Round 5 — and surging fantasy production — Allen’s a strong target regardless.

It helps that we like the Chargers’ chances of playing at least 2 games. The Wild Card Round turns up a Jags pass D sitting 6th-worst in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs. Kansas City — our projected Round 2 opponent for L.A. — sits 2nd worst.

TE George Kittle, 49ers

In my draft, Kittle lasted until the 3rd pick of round 3 — right at ADP. It’s a fair price, especially with the 49ers’ potential to play 3+ games in a thin conference. It’s tough to ignore his production in 6 Brock Purdy starts, too. The rookie’s helped Kittle average 4.0 catches, 52.5 yards and 1.1 TDs per game on a 22% target share.


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