Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:


Already have an account? Log in here.


Forgot Password


Observations From My First FFPC Draft

I've always considered myself to be really good at the waiver wire, which is part of the reason why I've avoided doing any Best Ball leagues until this year unless you count the three-person one I did for fun last year with my wife and one of our friends.

But if you want to evolve as a fantasy player and writer, you have to get outside of your comfort zone, which is why I jumped at the chance to do a Best Ball draft with our partner site, FFPC. This is my second Best Ball draft this year, but the first one was modified a little and wasn't really a true Best Ball league. This one is.

Here's a first-hand look at what my experience with prepping for and doing an FFPC Best Ball draft was like.

Editor's Note: For a limited time, we are offering all new FFPC players a $25-off coupon for any contest! You can play a $35 contest or a $70 contest, we'll give you $25 off either one! Whether you want to play a Best Ball challenge, join a Dynasty Startup, or try FFPC's unique Terminator challenge (best ball spin-off), there's a $25 discount waiting for you! All you have to do is be a new FFPC customer, sign-up for any game on FFPC through one of the above links, and the $25 discount will be automatically applied to your account!


Preparing For The Draft

Part of preparing for your first Best Ball draft is figuring out how to value players when the style of play is radically different than it is in a normal re-draft league. Usually, I value consistency and availability a lot. I'd rather play it safe with a high-floor guy than take a risk on someone who might not even show up this year. (Hence my zero percent ownership of Melvin Gordon in any re-draft league I'm in this year. I had Le'Veon Bell last year. I'm not taking that risk again so soon...even though I do have a couple shares of Ezekiel Elliott.)

But Best Ball drafts are a different beast, and with a lot more rounds, I spent a lot of my preparation thinking of how I could draft some of the riskier guys and then mitigate that risk with either A) safe picks later on or B) handcuffs.

Another thing I had to think about heading into this draft was how I valued different defenses and kickers. Look: I'll be the first to admit that in a non-IDP league, I don't value defense. In shallower season-long leagues, I'll literally drop my defense during the week, roster a position player I like just in case an injury happens, and then grab someone to stream on Sunday morning. I usually don't stream kickers, but I don't really think much about them on a weekly basis.

But for Best Ball, I knew I had to actually sit down, crunch some D/ST numbers and kicker numbers, and also figure out where to draft them. Could I wait until the last four rounds and just take two of each? Should I be aggressive in targeting those positions, knowing that at least 24 of each would be gone, would I want to be That Guy who jumps early and grabs the Bears Defense?


Observations From The Draft

So, you know the old saying that "the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry?"


But before I get to that, it's worth mentioning that the level of competition on FFPC was a definite step above what I'm used to at other sites or in leagues with people I know from outside of the fantasy world. You can usually count on at least a person or two in a draft to make some mistakes, but everyone in this was completely on their game the whole time.

Anyway, here are a few things I observed:

The Ezekiel Elliott Uncertainty Wasn't That Bad

Zeke went sixth, after the main three running backs, Travis Kelce, and my pick of DeAndre Hopkins. (So much for my plan to take risks!) I was curious if the Le'Veon Bell situation last year would be big in people's minds as it has been in pretty much every draft I've done this year, but in the end, Elliott's stock took just a tiny hit. I've seen re-draft boards where Elliott fell into the late second, but people weren't that scared off here.

Where did Quarterbacks get Drafted?

Patrick Mahomes was the only quarterback drafted in the first five rounds. This is basically how all re-draft leagues seem to go: someone takes Mahomes early, while everyone else stockpiles position players early.

But once Deshaun Watson was taken in the sixth, things picked up rapidly. That makes sense: in a Best Ball league, virtually any quarterback with a modicum of value is going to be drafted, and once people start taking them you basically have to focus on the position, because otherwise you're left in a scary position. I took Baker Mayfield in the eighth and Josh Allen in the 11th. The only person to wait super late on quarterback took Sam Darnold in the 15th, Andy Dalton in the 17th, and Dwayne Haskins in the 23rd. That seems less than ideal.

So, About Kickers And Defense?

I went defense in the 16th and was the third person to get a defense. By the time I grabbed by second on in the 21st, a big chunk of the draft had already taken their second. So, that's the range to get good ones -- the late teens of the draft.

As for kicker, one or two went per round starting in the 15th. You can be a lot less aggressive in grabbing your kickers, since the separation as the position trails off isn't that bad.

Wide Receivers Can Last Awhile

Tight ends Will Dissly, Geoff Swaim, Blake Jarwin, and Ian Thomas all were drafted before wide receivers Randall Cobb, Devante Parker, Devin Funchess, Andy Isabella, and Jalen Hurd. The late value on receivers is definitely a cut above the late value at some other spots.

More Fantasy Football Analysis

More Recent Articles


Best Waiver Wire Pickups from 2019

Each and every year we see an incredible number of players step foot on the NFL gridiron. Just in 2019, using Play Index, a total of 2,025 players took part in at least one game while one (Emmanuel Sanders) did the impossible and played 17 (!) games in the regular season as he was... Read More

Tight End VOS (Values Over Starter): 2019 Season In Context

The 2019 fantasy football season is over. That is not something we like to say considering the empty path we have ahead of us until we reach draft season again in eight months. The good thing about it, though, is that we have plenty of time to analyze what happened during the past few weeks... Read More

Biggest Surprises of 2019: Running Back

The 2019 NFL season was an interesting year for the running back position. Christian McCaffrey was the overall RB1, but some of the other top players fell below expectations. That led to some interesting final results when the final season standings came around. And while some of those -- Dalvin Cook as the RB3, Leonard... Read More

Quarterback VOS (Values Over Starter): 2019 Season In Context

The 2019 fantasy football season is over. That is not something we like to say considering the empty path we have ahead of us until we reach draft season again in eight months. The good thing about it, though, is that we have plenty of time to analyze what happened during the past few weeks... Read More

2019 RotoBaller NFL Challenge - And The @Fleaflicker Winner Is...

What a season, RotoBallers. Fantasy football is always a fun, interesting, and long season - filled with injuries, breakout players, and different strategies. It takes stamina and endurance to win the marathon, and we're here today to recognize those who pulled it off. With 343 teams - across two divisions - competing to be crowned champ... Read More

Introducing the 2020 Rookie Tight End Class

Out of all the skill positions, tight end is the one where rookies have the most issue making an immediate impact. But there's still always some value at every position in every NFL Draft, and the 2020 one is no exception, even if people are very down on this year's crop of tight ends. Let's... Read More

Can a New Coach Fix Baker Mayfield in 2020?

Another season has passed and another disappointment by Browns fans has been realized. Baker Mayfield got the head coach he wanted in Freddie Kitchens in 2019. In 2020, hopefully he's got the one he needs in Kevin Stefanski. Last season, under Kitchens, Mayfield had a coach he could control and manipulate. He did just that... Read More

Wide Receiver VOS (Values Over Starter): 2019 Season In Context

The one (and only) good thing about fantasy football season ending is that we have plenty of time to analyze what happened during the past few months and put performances into context to prepare for next season. As football is an ever-evolving game, though, it makes sense to assess how good players were in fantasy... Read More

The King's Keeper Corner: NFL Postseason Impacts on Player Outlooks

With a break in the postseason NFL action, it is time to reflect on what we have seen in the playoffs so far and how certain performances will affect fantasy football outlooks in keeper and dynasty formats. How players respond and what they deliver at the most intense and critical times of the season can... Read More

Introducing Value Over Starter Football Metrics

When it comes to fantasy sports, we're always looking for the highest possible Return On Investment or ROI. This concept is easy to understand: in both Daily Fantasy and re-draft/fantasy leagues, ROI would come down to how many points a player returns relative to his salary, or the price you paid (given his ADP on... Read More

Biggest Breakouts of 2019: Quarterback

2019 was a very interesting season of fantasy football, to say the least. It's safe to say no one was banking on the season that we saw from Lamar Jackson but he wasn't the only one to stand out. At the quarterback position, we saw some really exciting players start to shine and some older... Read More

Goodbye Runners, Hello Pass-Catching RBs: 2019 Season Trends

As the 2019 summer kept going we all had two things in our minds with regard to September's fantasy drafts and both of them were related to running backs: Where in the world are Ezekiel Elliott and Melvin Gordon and when will they be back? It made sense back then (and it still does now,... Read More

Where Does 2019 Rank Historically Among ADP Movers?

I have worked on a season-review series of articles in which I have analyzed the biggest winners and losers in terms of ADP entering draft season compared to the end of the year final results. It was plenty of fun looking back at the gambles most of us took which ultimately paid off, but also... Read More

Biggest Busts of 2019: Tight End

2019 was not the record-breaking season for tight ends 2018 was. San Francisco’s George Kittle (most receiving yards for a TE in a season) and Philadelphia’s Zach Ertz (most receptions for a TE in a season) did not break the records they set last season, although both were fine for fantasy players. Kansas City’s Travis... Read More

Rushing Quarterbacks Are Becoming Necessary

The 2019 fantasy season is over. We are all thinking about what to do come 2020 draft day. So let me ask you something. What if I offer you the chance of drafting a quarterback who is a lock to finish the season with 270 fantasy points? Would you take him and make him your... Read More