Fantasy Football 2020: Draft Strategy for 2QB Leagues
It’s important to adjust draft strategy based on league settings, especially in 2-QB leagues. Draft strategy varies greatly in 2-QB leagues in comparison to 1-QB leagues. In a 1-QB league, there are so many relevant quarterbacks that often people take the late-round quarterback route. However, in 2-QB leagues, you need to prioritize quarterbacks during the draft.
We’re going to take a look at different 2-QB draft strategies and discuss the differences from SuperFlex leagues. We’ll also look at different strategies and approaches to 2-QB leagues. Keep in mind that it’s important to adjust during the draft because each draft is a little different.
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2-QB Draft Strategy
2-QB vs. Superflex Formats
In both formats, most teams probably start two quarterbacks. However, in a 2-QB league, each team must start two quarterbacks as opposed to it being optional to start two quarterbacks in SuperFlex leagues. Most teams typically start two quarterbacks in both formats. Check out the SuperFlex rankings up on FantraxHQ as a starting point. Regardless, quarterbacks will typically be drafted early and often in both formats. In either format, the elite quarterbacks usually go in the first round, and sometimes Christian McCaffrey even goes third overall.
Draft Them Early
Let’s talk about different 2-QB draft strategies. As mentioned earlier, quarterbacks fly off the draft board, so adjust your draft strategy if you’re new to 2-QB leagues. One draft strategy is to take two quarterbacks in the first four rounds. Often, you’ll find wide receivers come at a value in 2-QB or SuperFlex leagues. In deeper leagues such as 14-16 teams, drafting two quarterbacks within the first six rounds becomes especially important. In a shallow 10-12 team league, then you will likely find values at quarterback in the draft.
Wait Until Round Five
Another 2-QB draft strategy is to wait until round five to take your first quarterback. If you use this strategy, then you should have stud running backs and wide receivers in the first four rounds. However, in rounds five and six, you should draft two quarterbacks. Check out Fantasy Football Calculator, and it will help give you an idea of ADP in 2-QB leagues. You will notice that 21 quarterbacks are drafted by the end of round eight in a 12-team league.
A third 2-QB draft strategy would be to take the late-round quarterback approach. There are a couple of ways to go about this. One way would be to draft one quarterback in the fifth round and then take a couple of quarterbacks on the same team later. Or wait until the double-digit rounds to draft a combination of the Patriots, Chargers, or Dolphins starting and backup quarterbacks. For instance, you might end up with Cam Newton and Jarrett Stidham paired with Ryan Fitzpatrick and Tua Tagovailoa.
Preferred 2-QB Draft Strategy: Draft Them Early
My preferred 2-QB draft strategy includes two quarterbacks and two running backs in the first four rounds. Depending on how the draft goes, I usually end up with one top-end quarterback and one middle-tier quarterback through four rounds. Then in rounds 5-7, I plan to draft one wide receiver, running back, and quarterback. Often I find Tyler Lockett or Calvin Ridley as my first wide receivers in round five unless a top-6 wide receiver such as Davante Adams or Chris Godwin falls to me.
After drafting two quarterbacks, I prefer to take a third backend quarterback like Gardner Minshew, Teddy Bridgewater, or Ryan Tannehill. Just like other positions, you will want backups to fill in due to injuries or bye weeks. If you only roster two quarterbacks, then it will be hard to find an adequate replacement on waivers. It will also be especially dicey during bye weeks since generally all starting quarterbacks are rostered.
Draft NFL Backups
So why should we draft NFL backups in a 2-QB league? When there is a quarterback injury, it’s better to have one of the backup quarterbacks rather than trying to bid or hope you can add them on waivers. Almost like handcuff running backs, handcuff quarterbacks provide extreme value in 2-QB leagues. A few top backup quarterbacks to target in drafts include Jameis Winston, Jarrett Stidham, and Justin Herbert. Also, remember that eventually, the quarterbacks run out in drafts, and there are not too many sleeper picks in the later rounds like with other positions.
Quarterbacks to Target in 2-QB Leagues
Now let’s look at quarterbacks to target in 2-QB leagues. Since teams are drafting most or all starting quarterbacks, you should be looking at all quarterbacks. A few of the top-end ones I prefer include Russell Wilson, Deshaun Watson, Dak Prescott, or Kyler Murray. Then I’ll look to grab a middle-tier quarterback such as Daniel Jones, Carson Wentz, or Matt Ryan.
Other middle-tier quarterbacks to target include Matt Stafford, Jared Goff, Kirk Cousins, or Gardner Minshew. If I wait to draft a quarterback until this middle-tier, then I expect to be loaded at running back and wide receiver in the first several rounds. Although I prefer to draft two quarterbacks in the first four rounds because sometimes drafts do not end up going the way you think. Every fantasy draft is different, so you’ll need to adjust accordingly.
So why is it necessary to prioritize quarterbacks early and often in 2-QB leagues? First, the depth at quarterback eventually runs out since there are only 32 NFL teams. Also, when looking at fantasy points by quarterbacks, we often see the top and middle-tier quarterbacks finishing the season with most fantasy points. Amongst the top-20 players with the most fantasy points, we see 16 quarterbacks in the top-20. When sorting by fantasy points per game, we again find 16 quarterbacks in the top-20. The main takeaway being that quarterbacks score the most fantasy points, so they’re a difference-maker in 2-QB leagues. With PPR leagues being the norm in fantasy football, 2-QB and SuperFlex leagues should eventually be the norm as well.
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