Will you have a stake in the game that offers a $1 billion prize?

  • Popular fantasy football site offers $1 billion prize for naming a ‘perfect lineup’
  • Near-impossible odds mean a winner is extremely unlikely

One billion big ones. That’s what your stake could earn you – but is it just a massive marketing ploy?

A wager on the perfect line up on DraftKings could lead to a $1 billion prize. But how likely is it?
A wager on the perfect line up on DraftKings could lead to a $1 billion prize. But how likely is it?

A billion dollars is certainly an eye-catching amount of money, and it’s no surprise that fantasy sports provider DraftKings has been heavily promoting their new contest, the Billion Dollar Lineup.

While it sounds too good to be true, the prize is completely real. The full amount is on offer to anyone who can make the ‘perfect NFL lineup’ – that is, the lineup with the highest possible points within the league’s salary and position restrictions.

To be clear, that’s not the highest number of points of all DraftKings players, but the highest possible lineup.

“For the last five NFL seasons, DraftKings has led the way in innovation and breakthrough ideas creating the game inside the game,” said Janet Holian, DraftKings’ CMO.

“This year, the Billion Dollar Lineup is the ultimate opportunity for players to test their skills and kick off the new NFL season with the potential to win $1 billion.”

Can the promotion be won?

So is it too good to be true? Well, DraftKings mention in a brief FAQ that: “For clarity, it is possible that no DK user will draft the perfect lineup and therefore no DK user will be eligible for the prize.”

And that’s certainly true – in fact, it’s a pretty huge understatement. The odds are difficult to calculate, since they involve a combination of luck and knowledge about the game, but one estimate on LegalSportsReport put the chances of winning at a cool one in two trillion. For fun, expressed as figures, that’s 2,000,000,000,0000-1.

In other words, if everybody on the planet had a shot at it, with a different combination, it would still be highly possible that no one would win.

Still, the move is certainly an eye-catching one. DraftKings is, of course, insured in the eventuality that anyone does in fact take home the prize, however unlikely that is.

As the promotion states: “This promotion can be won, but to conquer this ultimate test of skill, you’ll need to be perfect.”

And, perhaps, very, very lucky.

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