DraftKings Best Ball Strategy for 2023
Among the various captivating fantasy football formats, Best Ball stands out as one of the most enjoyable. Draft your squad and leave it up to the football gods to decide the rest.
While redrafts and dynasty leagues remain great options, Best Ball demands the utmost planning, research, and strategy in order to outsmart the rest of the field to win some money come the new year.
Between DraftKings’ full-PPR format to leaning into the idea of “stacking & smushing”, here are essential tips to remember before you draft.
PRIORITIZE WIDE RECEIVERS
In DraftKings’ formats, you are most likely starting four WRs every week. With uncertainty around RB’s health and depth chart situation outside of the top names, wide receivers are a safer option in earlier rounds.
When thinking about which wideouts to target, tend to lean toward high-potency offenses or positive game scripts. For example, I’m hammering the Jacksonville Jaguars and Miami Dolphins receiving core while selling the Denver Broncos and Tampa Bay Buccaneers offenses.
Overall, sporting 9 to 10 WRs on your roster is the way to go and late in the draft, take a shot on players rising up the depth charts during training camp including rookies Puka Nacua of the LA Rams and Tank Dell of the Houston Texans.
SLIGHTLY EMPHASIZE POCKET PASSERS
For new Best Ball DraftKings participants, it might be a shock that a 300-yard passing game earns your QB an additional three points. This is why I don’t mind waiting until outside the first few rounds to select a QB.
As I mentioned before, bank on Tua and Trevor Lawrence to get you a handful of these bonus points with offensive-minded coaches and potent playmakers surrounding them while Lamar Jackson and Justin Fields take a small value hit as it will be a rare occurrence that they throw for over 300 in an affair.
Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert, Trevor Lawrence, Tua Tagovailoa, and Kirk Cousins are the five QBs to target if you value the 3-point bonus the same way I do. All have offensive-minded Head Coaches (Herbert the exception) with elite playmaker(s) surrounding them.
If selecting one of these five QBs or virtually any other thrower outside of Lamar Jackson and Justin Fields, you have to select one of their pass catchers alongside them. Also, if you are confident that the Quarterback will outperform his ADP, there’s an incredible chance that the pass catcher you select to compliment will follow suit.
While you can go for the typical stack in Cousins/Jefferson, Tua/Waddle, or even Lawrence/Engram, there is some added value in putting your trust in an offense that you think could finish at the top of the scoring ladder in the NFL.
I like to call it smushing, where you expect three or more offensive players to start in your Best Ball lineup for about 25% of the season. For example, drafting Lawrence, Kirk, and Engram or Purdy, Aiyuk, and Kittle could be league-winning in any dynasty format.
In Best Ball, drafting these playmakers and QBs right around their ADP could give you the added edge over opponents late in the season when the offenses are clicking on all cylinders.
BE PICKY WITH RUNNING BACKS
If you are drafting a Running Back in the first few rounds, they have to be a “do-it-all” player. Austin Ekeler, Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Nick Chubb, and Travis Etienne are the only RBs that should be on your board early on, as Josh Jacobs, Rhamondre Stevenson, Dalvin Cook, Joe Mixon, and Tony Pollard sit just outside this top tier of backs that are built for PPR leagues and formats.
While selecting one of my five top-tier backs in the first few rounds, I’d then patiently wait until the 7th through 10th rounds to select your next batch of runners.
Miles Sanders, James Conner, David Montgomery, Antonio Gibson, and Rachaad White are my five favorite targets in this range as most are veterans that have a solid YPC rate and are PPR magnets at times.
David Montgomery steps into a backfield that scored 25 total TDs last season, so get ready for a top-15 season from the former Chicago Bear.
LATE ROUND TARGETS
Brock Purdy (SF) | (152.2 ADP)
Kenny Pickett (PIT) | (153.3 ADP)
Desmond Ridder (ATL) | (201.7 ADP)
Elijah Mitchell (SF) | (144.2 ADP)
Rashaad Penny (PHI) | (118.9 ADP)
Ty Chandler (MIN) | (203 ADP)
Rashee Rice (KC) | (139.8 ADP)
Adam Thielen (CAR) | (147.9 ADP)
Puka Nacua (LAR) | (226.1 ADP)
Sam LaPorta (DET) | (133.2 ADP)
Chigoziem Okonkwo (TEN) | (153.2 ADP)
Taysom Hill (NO) | (167.9 ADP)