Fantasy Football Best Ball Leagues
What are Best Ball Leagues in Fantasy Football?
Best ball leagues in fantasy football are leagues in which there are no head-to-head matchups and the team that accumulates the most points throughout the season wins. Contrary to standard fantasy football leagues, best ball leagues do not require managers to start and bench players each week, instead accounting only for the players with the highest point totals.
A complete best ball league roster has 18 players. Fantasy managers are required to draft at least one quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end and an additional player that plays one of the three non-quarterback positions (RB, WR, TE). Unlike standard fantasy football leagues, there are no positions dedicated to kickers or team defenses/special teams.
Scoring rules for best balls leagues are especially unique, in that fantasy managers do not have to worry about starting and benching players each week. Instead, the performances of all 18 players are taken into account and the 8 players (must include a quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end and one more RB/WR/TE) with the highest number of fantasy points are counted towards the teams total for that week.
Since there are no head-to-head matchups in best ball leagues, scores do not reset at the end of each week. Instead, each team's weekly score from weeks 1-16 is accumulated into an overall end of season score that decides who wins the league.
Strategies for Success
With best ball leagues allowing fantasy managers to 'start' all 18 players as opposed to just 9 players, there is less of a need to draft handcuffs (players that will assume a real-life starting role if the primary starter gets injured or performs poorly). Emphasis is instead placed on drafting players that have proven to be consistent fantasy contributors in recent years, as having a roster of 18 players that are likely to post a decent amount of fantasy points on a weekly basis all but ensures success in a best ball league.