If you want to win your dynasty league, then you have to nail the startup process. With our guidance, you’ll be prepared to win your next superflex dynasty startup draft.
Let’s be honest — one of the best parts of playing dynasty fantasy football is the startup process. Startup drafts are where you see the beginnings of your dynasty emerge from nothing. I’ve always found it exciting that all players at the beginning of dynasty drafts and auctions start completely even, but a skilled manager can give their team advantages right away by making smart decisions.
Below, you’ll find advice on how to win your next superflex dynasty startup draft. For the purposes of this article, we’ll assume the league has these general settings:
- 12 teams
- 30 total roster spots: 11 offensive starters (2 flex and 1 superflex), 11 defensive starters (IDP), 8 bench spots.
- Scoring: 0.5 PPR, TE Premium
Tip #1: Don’t Fade QB
I’ll lead with the obvious advice. The juice in superflex dynasty leagues is the ability to start more than one quarterback, so don’t make the mistake of fading QBs in your startup draft. In a superflex league, the QB position is significantly more important than in 1-QB leagues.
In 2020, QBs accounted for 20 out of the 25 highest scoring players in fantasy football, including every single spot in the top 10. You’d be foolish to leave so many points on the table by only starting one QB.
You should also consider position scarcity as a motivator. There are 32 starting QBs in the NFL each week and our hypothetical league will see 24 QBs (2 x 12 teams) in a starting lineup each week. That leaves just 8 reliable backup options for all 12 teams in your league to fight over. You certainly don’t want to have to engage in one of these melees to find your second starter at QB.
Okay. I feel like I’ve beaten that into you enough. Let’s move on.
Choose your quarterback pic.twitter.com/awRRnX0HvU
— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) June 11, 2021
Tip #2: Trading Back is Good
Don’t be afraid of trading back — as long as you can find a good deal.
You have a better chance of setting your team up for long-term success by building a deep, competitive roster from day one. Trading back is an easy way to guarantee you end up with a solid, deep roster. Having a deeper roster insulates you further from unforeseen occurrences in the NFL which have massive fantasy implications, such as serious injuries, trades, and player regression.
You might want to trade down to acquire more picks in the startup draft to try and build that solid roster from day one. On the other hand, you could acquire future rookie picks and give yourself more flexibility in upcoming offseasons.
Here’s one rule of thumb for trades during your startup draft: aim to gain as many picks as you can in the first 100 to 120 picks. This will give you a guideline for how far to fall in the draft and hopefully keep you from punting all of your good fortunes into future seasons.
Look at it this way — with our hypothetical league settings, the top-120 picks will represent all of the players who would make up the best 10 players on any roster in the league. If it’s my dynasty team, then give me as many of those players as I can get.
Tip #3: Invest in Young, Talented WRs
Don’t get me wrong — workhorse running backs are still some of the most valuable commodities in fantasy football. However, wide receivers are steadily overtaking RBs as the most important offensive position in fantasy outside of QBs. Young, talented WRs can be worth their weight in gold.
Generally, WRs are a more stable fantasy commodity than RBs over a long period of time. Receivers take longer to develop than RBs, but the length of their career’s fantasy relevance is often much longer, so they’re a good investment in dynasty.
A stud workhorse RB will raise your floor of fantasy points each week, and that can’t be overlooked. But if you’re building your team for the long haul, how long can you count on any given RB to remain healthy and productive, in a stable situation, all while fending off competition and the dreaded RBBC approach? That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prioritize RBs, but I’d encourage you to build around WR talent first.
Tip #4: Take Some Shots on Players With Upside
Let’s be real, playing it safe will only get you so far. If you aspire to win your superflex dynasty league, then eventually you’re going to have to take a couple of gambles to take your team to the next level.
These gambles often take the form of late-round fliers in superflex dynasty startup drafts. That said, they can also exist for more high-profile players from time to time. Antonio Brown in 2019 comes to mind, as do Aaron Rodgers and Deshaun Watson right now in 2021.
These players are all great examples of the range of outcomes you can expect from taking a chance on high-upside players. Your gambit might fail and leave you with nothing more than a bench player on your roster. But if you do succeed, you could either have a superstar on your team for years to come or an extremely valuable asset that you can use in a trade.
Tip #5: Have a Plan
This is perhaps the most important advice of all. You need to go into your superflex dynasty startup draft with some kind of plan or strategy.
What that looks like for you will entirely depend on what you want to get out of this dynasty league. You could take an unconventional approach and fade an entire position group. Focus on grabbing “your guys,” regardless of ADP. Always try to maximize the value of the players you draft.
Regardless of what you decide, it’s important that the strategy fits your vision for your team and matches how you derive enjoyment from fantasy football. At the end of the day, if you satisfy these two requirements, you’ll never go wrong.
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