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Guide to Superflex Drafts: Strategy & Advice (2023 Fantasy Football)

Guide to Superflex Drafts: Strategy & Advice (2023 Fantasy Football)

The game of fantasy football has evolved over the years. We’ve gone from non-PPR scoring and 1QB leagues being the “default” settings to a wide range of scoring and lineup options. Fantasy leagues have replaced team defenses/special teams for individual defensive players (IDP), kickers for an extra flex spot, and even a second matchup against the median score every week.

However, arguably the biggest change in the game has been the move from 1QB to Superflex leagues. Some fantasy leagues still only have one quarterback slot in your lineup. However, there are more fantasy leagues every year that add a Superflex spot to their starting lineup. So how much does that extra starting spot impact your fantasy draft plans? More than you would think.

2023 Fantasy Football Best Ball Draft Advice

Guide to Superflex Drafts (2023 Fantasy Football)

What are Superflex Leagues?

Superflex leagues are like any other fantasy league, except for one exception. Unlike regular flex spots, Superflex spots allow you to play a quarterback in that slot. While you do not have to start a quarterback in your Superflex spot, you will want to, even if the quarterback isn’t an elite fantasy player.

The quarterback position is extremely valuable in superflex leagues. The QB20 will outscore a typical RB2 or WR2 most weeks. Last year Marcus Mariota was the QB20, averaging 15.1 fantasy points per game. Only six wide receivers and six running backs averaged more fantasy points per game than Mariota in half-point PPR scoring. While starting Mariota last year wasn’t the most appealing option, it was the correct move to make for your fantasy team statistically.

Size Does Matter?

Without a doubt, size matters. Your draft strategy should change in a fantasy league with only eight teams compared to one with 14. In a 10-team or smaller league, every team could draft three starting NFL quarterbacks. However, in 12 or more team leagues, some teams will only have two (or one) starting quarterbacks. Between injuries and bye weeks, you want to leave your draft with at least three quarterbacks but ideally four. The bigger the league, the more emphasis you should put on drafting quarterbacks early.

Traditionally, fantasy experts recommend waiting till the later rounds to draft a quarterback or stream the position. However, that rule only applies in 1QB leagues. If you try that approach in superflex leagues, you will be eliminated from the playoffs before the start of Week 1. That recommendation doesn’t apply to Superflex leagues.

Different Types of Superflex Draft Strategies

The Two-Quarterback Start

In this strategy, you spend your first two draft picks on quarterbacks. Doing this will guarantee you two excellent starting options and lessen the need for a strong QB3. However, this also comes with downside. If you start your draft going with back-to-back quarterbacks, it will impact the strength of the rest of your roster. You will not get a top-tier running back or wide receiver, thus putting a ton of pressure on your quarterbacks to perform. If they bust or get injured, your season is over before the playoffs begin.

The best time to use this strategy is when you have an early first-round pick. With a top two to three pick, you can secure a superstar like Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen. In the second round, you can still grab a top-12 quarterback. Then you’re quickly back on the clock in the third round and can still grab a solid RB1 like Najee Harris or Rhamondre Stevenson.

Two Quarterbacks in the First Four

This strategy is my favorite to use in Superflex drafts. You get your two starting quarterbacks early but can still add a top-tier running back and pass-catcher to your roster. Ideally, you grab a quarterback or a superstar running back in the first round. If I have a top-four pick, I’m selecting a quarterback. After that, I would draft an elite running back or wide receiver before a quarterback in the first round.

Ideally, you want to use this strategy if you have an early first-round pick. You can grab a top quarterback in the first round and get a top-10 running back in the second round. Then you can draft a star wide receiver or tight end in the third round and your second quarterback in the fourth. Furthermore, you can adjust this strategy depending on how your league mates are drafting.

If there is a run on quarterbacks, you can grab your second one in the third round. However, you could possibly wait until the fifth round to draft your QB2 if the rest of your league mates are letting quarterbacks slide. You have to be flexible using this strategy.

Draft Wizard

Hero Quarterback

Everyone has heard of the Hero RB strategy. You take a stud in the first round of your draft and then wait till the middle rounds and load up on running backs there. The mindset is to have your plug-and-play RB1 and fill your RB2 slot based on the best matchup/situation each week. You can do similarly with quarterbacks in a Superflex league.

While this strategy sounds ideal, it does come with some risks. Your league mates could start a run on quarterbacks, forcing you to break away from this strategy. If you decide to ignore the run, you could end up with a sup-par quarterback situation. Furthermore, your season could be over if your hero quarterback suffers a multiple-week or season-ending injury. You could get left with a quarterback unit of a low-end starter like Matthew Stafford and a top backup like Andy Dalton or Taylor Heinicke.

Final Thoughts

You should always know your league’s scoring system before drafting. However, it matters even more in superflex leagues. Four points per passing touchdown and one fantasy point for every 25 passing yards scoring systems mean you want to target quarterbacks with rushing upside. Two potential early targets are Justin Fields and Lamar Jackson.

Even if your league’s scoring system is six points per passing touchdown and one fantasy point for every 20 passing yards, you should still target quarterbacks with rushing upside. However, pocket passers like Aaron Rodgers, Kirk Cousins and Geno Smith have more value in this scoring system.

Also, don’t turn your nose down at “ugly” quarterbacks. Yes, Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo aren’t the most appealing quarterbacks to roster. However, both averaged more than 14.5 fantasy points per game last season. By comparison, Amon-Ra St. Brown was the WR8 in 2022, averaging 13.4 half-point fantasy points per game. Remember, always play a starting quarterback in your Superflex spot if possible.

All 32 starting quarterbacks will get drafted in your Superflex leagues. Several of the top backups and rookies will also get picked. In total, you could have up to 40 quarterbacks drafted in your Superflex leagues, depending on the league size and the playing experience of your league mates. Several of the top backup quarterbacks could get picked. Furthermore, any rookie quarterback with a chance to start this year will likely get drafted. So be prepared for little or no options on the waiver wire at the quarterback position.

The depth at the quarterback position is very thin in Superflex leagues. Plan ahead and pick three to four quarterbacks during the draft or save your free agent acquisition budget (FAAB) or waiver priority for when a starter becomes available on the waiver wire.

That doesn’t mean ignoring the popular running back Week 1 waiver wire target. Instead, avoid using a big chunk of your FAAB or the top waiver priority on a two-week filler at running back or a streaming tight end. Save it for when you need it to secure a quarterback.

Dynasty Rookie Draft Kit

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Mike Fanelli is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @Mike_NFL2.

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