Each Best Ball platform has slight, or sometimes major, differences in various aspects like scoring, roster size, ADP and opponent tendencies. As drafters, we need to understand these nuances of each individual site in order to ensure we are building the best possible teams for that specific site.
Underdog Fantasy is the leader in the new booming Best Ball industry within the Fantasy Sports world. They offer a bit of a no nonsense approach to best ball, which is part of what makes them very appealing for all of us players. For Underdog’s Best Ball tournaments, you draft your team in a typical 12 team draft like every other best ball platform. They offer what we call a “Playoff Format” best ball tournament structure. You compete in your initial 12 team group to advance to the playoffs, and then proceed to play 3 different single week playoff contests against other advancing teams.
Contest Sizes & Advancements (Best Ball Mania 3)
- Round 1 – Top 2 Advance – 12 Team Groups
- Round 2 – Top 1 Advance – 10 Team Groups
- Round 3 – Top 1 Advance – 16 Team Groups
- Round 4 – Final Round – 470 Team Group
The above info is specific to Underdog’s featured Best Ball Mania 3 contest, which has been slightly restructured this year. The exact size of groups will change per tournament, but the general structure will remain similar. The size of the final round has been increased significantly allowing more teams to make it to the finals, while the 2nd and 3rd rounds have been made smaller.
- Round 1 – Weeks 1-14
- Round 2 – Week 15
- Round 3 – Week 16
- Round 4 – Week 17
The rounds on Underdog remain the same as last season, with the regular season being round 1 through week 14 against your original 12 team draft group.
Key Scoring Details
- Half (0.5) Point Per Reception (PPR)
- No Yardages Bonuses
- 4 Points Per Passing Touchdown
- 6 Points Per All Other Touchdowns
- -1 Point Per Interception
- -2 Points Per Fumbles Lost
- 18 Round Drafts
- 1 QB
- 2 RB
- 3 WR
- 1 TE
- 1 Flex (RB/WR/TE)
- 8 Bench Spots
The greatest part of the format that Underdog has implemented is that it allows just about any strategy to be feasible. With half point PPR, it creates a little more variance than the full point PPR counterparts (like Drafters or DraftKings) because touchdowns naturally make up a slightly higher percentage of the overall points scoring.
For instance, on Underdog, it can make sense to build just about any type of typical draft strategy, so long as you are not reaching *too* much on players and build smart, sound teams. We have outlined the 4 main roster construction strategies here –
ADP & Draft Dynamics
It’s important to understand the nuances of scoring, rosters and rules, but the biggest factor in strategy on Underdog is undoubtedly in the dynamics of ADP and how our competitors operate. Of all the Best Ball platforms, Underdog is almost assuredly the most efficient and sharpest market. They’re the leading operator in the space, so in turn the sharpest content minds gravitate to the platform which leads to a much more efficient market.
Even with half point PPR scoring, Underdog drafters have figured out the “running back dead zone”. You will still get the star running backs priced near the top of drafts, but Underdog drafters have become pretty hip to the middle rounds of drafts. With that in mind, you will also see that pocket of drafts after the top few rounds where the elite QBs get slotted in. Again, it’s an efficient assessment of how the elite QBs are scoring fantasy points, particularly for half point PPR scoring.
Opposite of DraftKings, the WR depth will often run out quite quickly on Underdog. This is another important element of understanding how to implement the various strategies shown above. The Underdog market has learned that many of the most important players in fantasy football each year tend to be the middle tier WRs. That’s because they typically have the widest range of potential outcomes due to various forms of uncertainty revolving around them (youth, situation, target competition, etc). Years ago, we might have gotten discounts on these high upside players, but that is no longer the case on Underdog. We have to pay for the guys with the big ceilings, particularly at WR.
In general, Underdog is the most efficient market in fantasy football today, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t be successful drafting there. It’s efficient, but we can also see lots of groupthink in the ADP and draft environments, so if we are able to effectively navigate that and employ our strategies effectively, we can still crush our drafts.
Each Best Ball platform has slight, or sometimes major, differences in various aspects like scoring, roster size, ADP and opponent tendencies. As drafters, we need to understand these nuances of each individual site in order to ensure we are building the best possible teams for that specific site. Underdog Fantasy is the leader in the […]
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