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Now Available: NRL & AFL Draft Guides

Posted Fri 01 January by Darryl Woodford

For the first time, we’ve launched draft guides for the seasonal formats. This isn’t the 100-300 page glossy productions put out by others (though there are some excellent ones I enjoy reading put out by the guys at NRLCEO.com, NRL Supercoach Talk, and even Champion Data), but pure numbers. Got a draft tomorrow/next week, and don’t have time to look at every player? Our projections will make it easy.

What is this?

Using the same algorithm that has been used to win over $17,000 playing Australian Daily Fantasy Sports (AFL, NRL & Cricket), we’ve simulated each game of the forthcoming AFL and NRL seasons, and scored each player according to a number of the popular fantasy scoring systems out there.

For AFL, this was easy, as AFL.com Fantasy, Dream Team & Ultimate Team all use the same scoring system. For NRL, it was a little more complicated, but we’ve built in the NRL.com, NRL Supercoach and NRLCEO.com scoring systems. Are we missing your favorite? Drop us a note on the forums or on Twitter (@fantasyinsider), and we’ll see what we can do. We can’t include AFL supercoach, as the scoring system is a black box!

How do I read the guides?

For each player, we’ve listed their performance under each scoring system, as well as the positions they are available for (as of 30 January 2016). By sorting by position, or points, you can quickly build your list for the best at each position.

The real value comes in the VORP column however (which is currently available for AFL, and rolling its way out across the NRL scoring systems). This metric shows the “Value Over Replacement Player” for each player. Essentially, we calculate the expected fantasy output of the nth player at a position, where n is the number we would expect to be drafted in a standard (10-team) league. This metric allows you to compare players across positions, e.g. should I draft a Forward or a Ruckman with my next pick? The higher the VORP, the better the pick.

Can you explain more?

In the coming days, we’ll feature a more in-depth look at the projections, and how to go about drafting a team with them. We’ll also join a few mock drafts, and a few real leagues, so you can see the kind of teams you’d end up with if you follow the projections.

But ‘xyz’ is suspended/injured/in rehab

We know, and we’ll update the projections soon to fix these players. Simulating the whole season is a reasonably complex endeavor, and when we ran these simulations the simplest way was to assume everyone was fit, and would play approximately the same minutes as last year (the only real adjustment we made was for aging). Since then, we’ve added in more realistic measures of playing time, but it will take a week or so until those are fully reflected in the projections and values.

Image source: reepy_au on Flickr

Darryl Woodford

Darryl is the guy behind the DFS username dpwoodford. Co-founder of Fantasy Insider, he has over 15 years experience in building models for betting on sporting events, and was one of the early leaders in Australian DFS.

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