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Storyboard Draft 4: Leverage at the Turn

By :: MJohnson86

Something that is often discussed in weekly DFS theory and strategy is the “story” your lineup tells. Basically, the idea is to think about what the recap of the day would have to be for each particular lineup to have been the “right” combination of players that gets you to a first-place finish on that slate. I like to do something similar when drafting Best Ball rosters, thinking about the “story” that the roster is telling about how the NFL season will play out with each pick that is made. As Hilow and I discussed on his pod a few weeks ago, these “if-then” statements can be extremely valuable thought exercises and help us see things in a different light than our competition.

At every selection in a draft, there are a variety of reasonable options available, and whatever choice you make also implies some things about the other players you passed on. Similar to price point or positional pivots on a regular DFS slate, we want to be aware of the scenario where your picks are “right.” Everyone understands team stacks, and most of the industry is focusing on late-season correlations and balancing exposures, but very few are actively trying to leverage the decisions made for a particular roster with their later-round picks by using these indirect correlations.

Contest: Underdog Best Ball Mania 3
Draft Date: August 14th
Pick: 12th

Picks 1.12 and 2.01: Ceedee Lamb, WR, DAL and Saquon Barkley, RB, NYG –

  • Key players passed on: Travis Kelce, Joe Mixon, Aaron Jones, D’Andre Swift
  • Potential leverage spots: JuJu Smith-Schuster, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Joe Burrow, Chris Evans, AJ Dillon, Amon-Ra St. Brown, Jamaal Williams
  • Lamb Playoff matchups: JAX, PHI, TEN
  • Barkley Playoff matchups: WAS, MIN, IND

Picks 3.12 and 4.01: Kyle Pitts, TE, ATL and JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, KC – Both of these picks provide leverage and build on the story I told by passing on Travis Kelce with my first two picks. If Pitts has a monster year and tops the position, Kelce was likely down from his career path of huge years. In the scenario where that happens, Patrick Mahomes’ passes have to go somewhere and JuJu appears locked in as the top wide receiver for the Chiefs at this point.  

  • Key players passed on: James Conner, Allen Robinson, Ezekiel Elliott, Darren Waller
  • Potential leverage spots: Kyler Murray/Darrel Williams, Van Jefferson/Tyler Higbee, Tony Pollard, Josh Jacobs/Keelan Cole/Foster Moreau
  • Pitts Playoff matchups: NO, BAL, ARI
  • JuJu Playoff matchups: HOU, SEA, DEN

Picks 5.12 and 6.01: Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, DET and Kyler Murray, QB, ARI – I am a big fan of St. Brown, something I’ve talked about in several prior articles as well, and adding him here as my WR3 feels great in a vacuum but also as leverage off the decision to pass on D’Andre Swift to start the draft. Getting Kyler as my QB1 serves multiple purposes, as it plays off the story of both of my selections at the 3/4 turn by correlating with Pitts in Week 17 and leveraging the decision to pass on James Conner.

  • Key players passed on: Jalen Hurts, Rashod Bateman, Adam Thielen
  • Potential leverage spots: Miles Sanders/Kenneth Gainwell, Devin Duvernay, KJ Osborn/Irv Smith
  • St. Brown Playoff matchups: NYJ, CAR, CHI
  • Kyler Playoff matchups: DEN, TB, ATL

Picks 7.12 and 8.01: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, KC and Josh Jacobs, RB, LVR

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