How To Attack Two Quarterback Leagues
By Jeff Tefertiller
August 18th, 2011

The diversity of leagues is one aspect that makes fantasy football so much fun. Some people like the larger leagues, while some like the smaller ones. The values of players vary widely with the differences in scoring and starting lineup. It is not a wise move to use standard draft strategies in the non-standard leagues. This is especially true with league which require two quarterbacks in the starting lineup. An entirely different strategy is essential in order to make the most of the draft. This article will look at ten team leagues, starting two quarterbacks, and utilizing PPR scoring. We will examine strategies especially designed for these leagues in order to best attack the draft and get the most from the roster. At the bottom of the article, we will look at a few mock drafts utilizing different draft positions. These will help you form a new strategy for your league.

Down to basics, what are the differences I should know about the 2QB leagues?

  • The biggest question is how to value quarterbacks in comparison to other positions. In leagues which start two passers, even the most average quarterbacks are worth as much as good running backs and receivers. It is difficult to balance gaining studs at other positions while still addressing quarterback. As a general rule, it is best to only draft elite players at running back or wide receiver over starting quarterbacks. So, this means you should only take the top four or five running backs (Arian Foster, Chris Johnson, Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, and Jamaal Charles) or the top three wideouts (Andre Johnson, Hakeem Nicks, and Calvin Johnson) over the quarterback position in the first three rounds. The VBD values will suggest that the passers carry this type of value.

  • How do I know which quarterbacks to select? The main increase in value is with the players from QB10 to QB25. The top quarterbacks retain good value in all leagues, but it is the ones ranked lower that need the extra analysis. The players in this range (QB10-QB25) are ranked lower because there is a question about talent, certainty of situation, potential lack of upside, or just lack of proven production. Fantasy owners usually struggle with differentiating between the less than stellar options. Less than two projected points per game separates QB10 (Josh Freeman) from QB20 (Matt Cassel). With so many alternatives, the priority should be on seeking value. While it sounds simplistic, select the players who are the most talented. Next, do not spend a pick before the seventh or eighth round on a player whose job is not secure. Since every team in your league starts two players at the position, finding options with upside and proven production is the key in gaining value.

  • How does the quarterback scarcity impact the early rounds? There will be quarterback runs. In leagues which start two at the position, owners will see the runs coming and will be desperate not to be left behind. This is all driven by positional scarcity. For this reason, it is best to take a stud quarterback, or two, early just to stay ahead of the curve. The mad rush for passers will push quality players at other positions down the draft.
  • When we look at the VBD (Value Based Drafting) application, we quickly realize how valued the quarterbacks are when compared to the other positions. The VBD accounts for positional scarcity and available options at other positions using the Footballguys.com projections. It is amazing that in the first 36 players listed in terms of value, eight are quarterbacks, eleven are wide receivers, and seventeen running backs. The league variables used were ten teams, eighteen roster spots, PPR scoring, and starting requirements of 2 quarterbacks, 2 running backs, 3 wide receivers, 1 tight end, 1 flex, 1 kicker, and 1 team defense.

    Below are the Top 50 players according to the VBD values:

    Rk
    Pos
    PosRk
    Player
    Team/Bye
    Points
    VBD
    ADP
    1
    RB
    1
    Arian Foster
    Hou/11
    280.4
    145
    1.02
    2
    RB
    2
    Ray Rice
    Bal/5
    275.2
    140
    1.05
    3
    RB
    3
    LeSean McCoy
    Phi/7
    262.2
    127
    1.06
    4
    RB
    4
    Adrian Peterson
    Min/9
    258.1
    122
    1.01
    5
    RB
    5
    Jamaal Charles
    KC/6
    256.2
    120
    1.04
    6
    RB
    6
    Chris Johnson
    Ten/6
    255.5
    120
    1.03
    7
    WR
    1
    Andre Johnson
    Hou/11
    280.8
    116
    1.07
    8
    QB
    1
    Aaron Rodgers
    GB/8
    376.8
    115
    1.08
    9
    RB
    7
    Darren McFadden
    Oak/8
    249.9
    114
    2.04
    10
    QB
    2
    Michael Vick
    Phi/7
    365.9
    105
    2.02
    11
    RB
    8
    Matt Forte
    Chi/8
    240.1
    104
    2.08
    12
    RB
    9
    Steven Jackson
    StL/5
    239.5
    104
    2.07
    13
    WR
    2
    Calvin Johnson
    Det/9
    264.8
    100
    2.01
    14
    WR
    3
    Hakeem Nicks
    NYG/7
    260.9
    96
    2.10
    15
    RB
    10
    Peyton Hillis
    Cle/5
    230.8
    95
    3.03
    16
    RB
    11
    Maurice Jones-Drew
    Jac/9
    229.3
    94
    1.09
    17
    WR
    4
    Roddy White
    Atl/8
    257.6
    92
    2.03
    18
    RB
    12
    Ahmad Bradshaw
    NYG/7
    226.5
    91
    4.02
    19
    RB
    13
    Jahvid Best
    Det/9
    224.8
    89
    4.10
    20
    RB
    14
    Frank Gore
    SF/7
    223.4
    88
    2.06
    21
    RB
    15
    Rashard Mendenhall
    Pit/11
    217.2
    81
    1.10
    22
    WR
    5
    Larry Fitzgerald
    Ari/6
    244.1
    79
    2.09
    23
    QB
    3
    Tom Brady
    NE/7
    338.0
    77
    3.04
    24
    QB
    4
    Philip Rivers
    SD/6
    336.0
    75
    3.09
    25
    QB
    5
    Tony Romo
    Dal/5
    335.5
    74
    5.04
    26
    WR
    6
    Vincent Jackson
    SD/6
    237.8
    73
    3.06
    27
    QB
    6
    Drew Brees
    NO/11
    333.9
    72
    3.02
    28
    WR
    7
    Mike Wallace
    Pit/11
    235.6
    70
    3.05
    29
    RB
    16
    Felix Jones
    Dal/5
    200.2
    65
    6.09
    30
    WR
    8
    Greg Jennings
    GB/8
    229.4
    64
    3.01
    31
    QB
    7
    Peyton Manning
    Ind/11
    325.0
    64
    3.08
    32
    WR
    9
    Dwayne Bowe
    KC/6
    223.4
    58
    4.03
    33
    WR
    10
    Reggie Wayne
    Ind/11
    221.3
    56
    3.07
    34
    WR
    11
    DeSean Jackson
    Phi/7
    220.1
    55
    4.01
    35
    QB
    8
    Ben Roethlisberger
    Pit/11
    316.3
    55
    7.04
    36
    RB
    17
    Ryan Mathews
    SD/6
    188.3
    53
    4.07
    37
    WR
    12
    Brandon Marshall
    Mia/5
    217.1
    52
    5.02
    38
    RB
    18
    Mark Ingram
    NO/11
    185.4
    50
    5.10
    39
    RB
    19
    Fred Jackson
    Buf/7
    185.3
    50
    7.07
    40
    RB
    20
    Shonn Greene
    NYJ/8
    185.0
    49
    4.08
    41
    RB
    21
    Knowshon Moreno
    Den/6
    182.2
    47
    5.05
    42
    WR
    13
    Brandon Lloyd
    Den/6
    211.5
    46
    6.02
    43
    WR
    14
    Mike Williams
    TB/8
    210.3
    45
    4.06
    44
    WR
    15
    Wes Welker
    NE/7
    210.2
    45
    5.07
    45
    WR
    16
    Steve Johnson
    Buf/7
    208.3
    43
    6.07
    46
    RB
    22
    Michael Turner
    Atl/8
    177.8
    42
    2.05
    47
    WR
    17
    Dez Bryant
    Dal/5
    205.0
    40
    5.01
    48
    WR
    18
    Santonio Holmes
    NYJ/8
    203.5
    38
    6.03
    49
    WR
    19
    Miles Austin
    Dal/5
    203.3
    38
    3.10
    50
    WR
    20
    Percy Harvin
    Min/9
    202.1
    37
    7.01

    It is interesting how the positions are evenly distributed. Yes, there is only one tight end, but 17 wide receivers, 17 running backs, and 15 quarterbacks ... all with values in the first five rounds. How does it change for the players 51-90? This represents more than the first half of the draft.

    Rk
    Pos
    PosRk
    Player
    Team/Bye
    Points
    VBD
    ADP
    51
    QB
    9
    Matt Schaub
    Hou/11
    298.3
    37
    6.05
    52
    RB
    23
    Cedric Benson
    Cin/7
    171.0
    35
    6.06
    53
    RB
    24
    Marshawn Lynch
    Sea/6
    170.7
    35
    7.09
    54
    WR
    21
    Mario Manningham
    NYG/7
    199.0
    34
    8.04
    55
    RB
    25
    LeGarrette Blount
    TB/8
    167.0
    31
    4.04
    56
    QB
    10
    Josh Freeman
    TB/8
    291.6
    30
    8.01
    57
    RB
    26
    DeAngelo Williams
    Car/9
    165.3
    30
    4.09
    58
    QB
    11
    Matthew Stafford
    Det/9
    288.4
    27
    10.04
    59
    WR
    22
    Mike Thomas
    Jac/9
    189.7
    25
    10.06
    60
    WR
    23
    Austin Collie
    Ind/11
    189.7
    25
    7.08
    61
    WR
    24
    Marques Colston
    NO/11
    189.2
    24
    5.06
    62
    QB
    12
    Joe Flacco
    Bal/5
    284.4
    23
    10.01
    63
    QB
    13
    Jay Cutler
    Chi/8
    283.6
    22
    11.01
    64
    WR
    25
    Anquan Boldin
    Bal/5
    186.1
    21
    7.02
    65
    QB
    14
    Matt Ryan
    Atl/8
    281.8
    20
    6.08
    66
    QB
    15
    Eli Manning
    NYG/7
    281.2
    20
    8.07
    67
    RB
    27
    Daniel Thomas
    Mia/5
    155.0
    19
    7.03
    68
    RB
    28
    Ryan Grant
    GB/8
    153.5
    18
    6.10
    69
    QB
    16
    Sam Bradford
    StL/5
    278.5
    17
    10.07
    70
    TE
    1
    Jason Witten
    Dal/5
    195.6
    17
    5.08
    71
    QB
    17
    Kevin Kolb
    Ari/6
    276.6
    15
    12.10
    72
    WR
    26
    Kenny Britt
    Ten/6
    179.0
    14
    7.10
    73
    TE
    2
    Antonio Gates
    SD/6
    192.2
    14
    4.05
    74
    RB
    29
    Joseph Addai
    Ind/11
    148.1
    12
    8.02
    75
    QB
    18
    Mark Sanchez
    NYJ/8
    270.4
    9
    14.01
    76
    TE
    3
    Dallas Clark
    Ind/11
    187.2
    9
    5.03
    77
    RB
    30
    Tim Hightower
    Was/5
    143.9
    8
    15.08
    78
    RB
    31
    Reggie Bush
    Mia/5
    143.3
    8
    11.04
    79
    DEF
    1
    Pittsburgh Steelers
    Pit/11
    158.0
    6
    9.02
    80
    RB
    32
    Chris Wells
    Ari/6
    139.3
    4
    9.06
    81
    PK
    1
    Nate Kaeding
    SD/6
    124.8
    3
    15.03
    82
    WR
    27
    Santana Moss
    Was/5
    167.5
    2
    9.05
    83
    RB
    33
    LaDainian Tomlinson
    NYJ/8
    137.4
    2
    12.02
    84
    QB
    19
    Jason Campbell
    Oak/8
    262.4
    1
    19.07
    85
    WR
    28
    A.J. Green
    Cin/7
    166.0
    1
    8.10
    86
    TE
    4
    Jermichael Finley
    GB/8
    179.1
    0
    6.01
    87
    WR
    29
    Julio Jones
    Atl/8
    165.1
    0
    9.04
    88
    RB
    34
    Brandon Jacobs
    NYG/7
    135.7
    0
    9.10
    89
    TE
    5
    Vernon Davis
    SF/7
    178.6
    0
    6.04
    90
    QB
    20
    Matt Cassel
    KC/6
    261.4
    0
    12.05

    Interestingly, the positional proportions remained about the same. With 20 quarterbacks off the board, it means that every team is assumed to have drafted two already at the position. This mad rush of passers has pushed very good backs and receivers into extreme value situations.

    After running a few mocks, it became obvious that getting at least one, and possibly two, top players at the quarterback position is essential. There is no way to win your league if you are starting Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco at the quarterback position. A team having two of the top seven elite fantasy options has a monstrous advantage. A shortage is quickly created. The position is not deep for fantasy owners. The wide receiver position is the opposite. The are several very good options available at wide receiver (like Santana Moss, Kenny Britt, etc.) halfway into the draft.

    In the first five rounds, it would be best to have two quarterbacks, two running backs, and one wide receiver after five rounds. The VBD values drop off considerably after Roethlisberger (QB8) and there is no way the fantasy teams with the lesser pair of passers can compete with a Rodgers/Brady combination, for example.

    In two quarterback leagues, the tight end position becomes less valuable relative to the quarterback and running back positions. Savvy owners should wait until the six round or later to address the position. There are more than ten quality tight ends so you can afford to wait.

    In summary, load up on ball carriers and passers early in the draft and only address wide receiver and tight after the talent falls off at the two primary positions.

    Please feel free to email me at tefertiller@footballguys.com with any questions or comments. Also, I am on Twitter, so feel free to ask me questions there.

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