Let’s be real – fantasy football best ball drafts are not won in the first round. In fact, with the way that we draft a bunch of teams and enter contests all summer long (like Underdog’s Best Ball Mania V, which is open now), they can’t really be lost in the first round, either. 

By kickoff, we’ll essentially have drafted every combination of first and second-round picks so exposure to busts and injuries won’t hurt as bad as it does in your hometown redraft league. It’s really the deeper part of the best ball rankings where the big money winning is done: the sleepers and rookies that emerge from the last rounds to win us the million-dollar prizes.

That said, hitting on the exact right player isn’t always easy. In fact, the odds that you can just pinpoint them AND get them in one draft are not great. And that’s why doing a bunch of drafts, especially using the Fantasy Alarm Best Ball Cheat Sheet, is the way to give yourself the best odds to succeed. But that’s not all. 

We also have some tips and tricks to keep in mind along the way when making those last round picks. Once you’ve done a couple of these, you’ll start recognizing the trends in terms of what players and positions will be there waiting for you at the ends of drafts – and that’s when you’ll become a fantasy football best ball master!




Roster Composition Matters First

It happens to the best of us. You’re cruising through your fantasy football best ball draft, collecting value left and right. Stacks, correlation, sleepers, you name it. Then you realize you’ve made a classic blunder. Maybe you only have one quarterback. Or one tight end. Maybe you have only three running backs and they all have the same bye week. Whatever it is, your hands are tied.

Before we get to any higher-level strategy, you need to consider roster composition. We generally want to stay within these ranges.

  • QB: 2-3 
  • RB: 4-7 
  • WR: 6-9 
  • TE: 2-4

In this case, it’s the low end that matters. You ideally want to be in that range – especially at QB and TE. So, before you strategize your last couple of picks, make sure you are set to land within the parameters. You might be forced to take a certain position to avoid complete catastrophe… and embarrassment.




The Right Fantasy Football Correlations

Is your roster composition in line? Great. Now we can start thinking about slight edges we can give ourselves. We always want to stay within the realm of selecting the “best available player” to some degree. 

But, in the last two rounds of a best ball draft, ADP and even “best available” get a lot murkier. Underdog Fantasy drafts are 18 rounds (216 picks total) and there are 68 players with an ADP between 215.1 and 215.9. You really can pick your poison.

So, in this great land of tiebreakers, why not use correlation to help make those decisions? For instance, let’s say you are looking at Rashod Bateman, Wan’Dale Robinson, Javon Baker, Zay Jones, and Demario Douglas as your top five WRs left and you don’t really lean towards one or the other. 

Well, if you drafted Kyler Murray earlier in the draft, maybe you go with Zay Jones to complete that stack? A couple big Kyler to Jones weeks down the stretch and it could pay off HUGE. Early in drafts, reaching to complete stacks can hurt us, but you can’t really “reach” with your last pick. So, you get that little bonus at no cost.

And the same goes for schedule correlations, too. Every little piece of strategy helps. So you might want to check your bye weeks and see who has the best chance at cracking your lineup. In the bigger tournaments, every week isn’t created equally either, with Weeks 15, 16, and 17 generally being playoff weeks.

As Tyler Orginski pointed out on our Alarm Fantasy Football show this week, a team like Detroit faces Chicago and San Francisco in Weeks 16 and 17, which could offer shootout potential. Check the schedule to see what matchups you like in those big tournaments where only one team wins out of thousands.




Reverse Roster Construction

Now, this one can be a little dangerous at times. So, you’ll want to be careful. But you can create massive leverage with your fantasy football best ball builds if you have a few late round picks that you love AND you are confident they will be there. 

That will allow you to focus on other positions early on knowing that you have an ace up your sleeve in the last rounds. And you can mitigate some of that risk big time if you have a couple of plays you like at the same position.

It works for any position, but my favorite two are quarterback and tight end. Let’s say you truly believe that guys like Russell Wilson and/or Gardner Minshew will not only keep the starting job, but they will thrive. Those guys are going undrafted at times in these drafts. So you can almost always count on grabbing them with a very late pick. That allows you to fade QB early on knowing you have those guys in your back pocket – a rather valuable set up.

Heck, as we talked about on the show, with certain combinations (like Bo Nix and Greg Dulcich, for instance), you can cover all three topics in this article. You get QB and TE for roster construction, it’s a Broncos stack for correlation, and having the QB/TE in your back pocket allows for some reverse construction. 

These are just a couple ways you can navigate the last picks of your fantasy football best ball drafts and, if you really want to see how WE are doing it and where the expert value is, pick up a copy of the 2024 Fantasy Alarm Best Ball Cheat Sheet today!