This article is part of our FanDuel College Football series.
The CFP National Championship Game is upon us, which means that the major fantasy sits will be rolling out their single-game offerings for the big game. FanDuel did not disappoint, as the site has several buy-in levels available for the event, which kicks off Monday night at 9:00 p.m. ET.
Fortunately, we were able to see a preview of this game in the SEC Championship, which resulted in a surprise win for Alabama. I think the best way to tackle the slate is to take a look at the winners and losers in that contest, with emphasis on results substantially above and below their typical numbers.
Bryce Young, Alabama 41.8 FP
Jameson Williams, Alabama 40.4 FP
Stetson Bennett, Georgia 27.7 FP
Ladd McConkey, Georgia 11.6 FP
George Pickens, Georgia 6.1 FP
James Cook, Georgia 10.6 FP
Brian Robinson, Alabama 9.1 FP
Ja'Corey Brooks, Georgia 1.6 FP
Zamir White, Georgia 6.4 FP
Cameron Latu, Alabama 2.3 FP
Obviously, both teams had semifinal matches that reflect more recent totals, but their previous matchup in the SEC Championship is the most accurate metric to explore.
Unlike other sites, FanDuel's salaries remain static regardless of where players are positioned. The MVP slot offers a 1.5x multiplier, and four FLEX spots complete the lineup. This is a much simpler format as it isn't necessary to analyze salary differentials when slotting a given player into the MVP slot. In DraftKings' showdown format, the point-per-dollar giveaway relative to point-per-dollar gain for the Captain slot is the key component, but in FanDuel's format, we're simply looking for the best way to merge top performers in the five slots and make educated guesses for the best performance in the MVP slot.
For my money, there are only two players who fit the bill, and they are both fairly obvious plays. Bryce Young ($17,000) and Jameson Williams ($14,500) stand head-and-shoulders above all other options, and as expected, they hold the first and second-highest salaries. In my latest crunch, I have Young or Williams as the MVP in over 70 percent of my lineups. I have no doubt that the Bulldogs' defense will be better prepared for Alabama this time around, but the SEC Championship showed how vulnerable the country's top defense can be against an offense that lives and dies on breakaway big plays. Young was responsible for 49 touchdowns during his Heisman-worthy season and played through the campaign with very few mistakes. He only threw five interceptions all year, and the Bulldogs were unable to generate a pick off of Young in the SEC Championship. The Bulldogs also had a hard time containing Williams, who had a field day against Georgia's typically-stalwart secondary. I expect Williams' metrics to take a dip in the rematch, as the earlier deficiency is the easiest fix for Georgia. That does not diminish his standing as one of our most reliable MVP plays, however.
Stetson Bennett, Georgia ($14,000)
Some might think that the tag is too high for Bennett, but the Bulldogs tend to spread the ball around so much, you'd be hard-pressed to find a more complete contributor on the Bulldogs' side of the ball. Even though Alabama kept Georgia contained, Bennett still threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns, which is a superlative total for any FBS quarterback
James Cook, Georgia ($11,000)
Cook was limited to 64 yards of total offense against the Crimson Tide, but he demonstrated his massive upside with 112 yards receiving and a TD catch against Michigan. Despite the anemic total against Alabama, he was still the team's leading rusher, so the volume and upside are both there.
A majority of my builds have some combination of Young, Bennett and Cook, with cheap value options below them. There are a couple of spots where I pivot to Georgia's Zamir White ($10,000) as a contrarian option over Cook, and it goes without saying that Alabama's Brian Robinson ($12,000) sets up as an excellent contrarian pivot of off Williams.I don't think Robinson will have the highest number on the slate, but he merits some consideration as an MVP.
Although receivers hold a lot of value due to their PPR numbers, FanDuel only awards 0.75 FP per catch. The rostering of multiple running backs is a running trend in the lineup construction for this contest.
Since only have $12,000 per slot, we need to find at least one cheap value to afford our elite targets.
VALUE PLAYS (10k or less)
Ladd McConkey, Georgia ($8,500)
Jermaine Burton, Georgia ($9,000)
Slade Bolden, Alabama ($7,500)
To conclude, you'd be well-served by including TE Brock Bowers ($12,500) in some of your lineups, especially if you have Bennett. Injuries have been an issue with the standout tight end, but he should be good to go Mondy night. The Bennett/Bowers stack is a darkhorse to be the best stack on the slate.