Megalabowl Strategy: The Biggest Fantasy Football Tournament in the World
Editor’s Note: This article is by Ray Smith, commissioner of the largest fantasy football tournament in the known world. This article is a look at tournament strategy. To sign up, go to Megalabowl.com.
The Megalabowl is a unique fantasy football tournament that challenges participants to balance season-long and tournament-winning strategy. The Fantasy Footballers are home to the best and arguably most competitive group in the world: The FootClan. In order to succeed in this format, one must draft a strong core of players, manage the roster effectively throughout the season, and adapt to the changing dynamics of the playoffs. You don’t WIN your league at the draft, but it is more important this year because of the absence of trading going forward.
This article will outline some key principles and tips for drafting and managing a winning team in the Megalabowl. The biggest advice is NEVER give up until you’re mathematically eliminated. Last year’s MEGALABOWL CHAMPION started off 3-7!
1,800+ Leagues, 1 Commissioner
It’s been a ride from 660 users in the first Megalabowl and manually entering emails and scores into a spreadsheet to over 22,000 Footclan members participating in the 2022 Megalabowl. The first year I was putting together what I thought was a huge league of 96 teams all sourced from the Footclan Leagues forums, then Jason messaged me asking if I would want to add over 500 more to make it a clean 55! 12-man leagues. Most of my time has been spent doing what your commissioner should never have to do: reversing collusion, removing not-so-nice league-mates, and dealing with the occasional roster dump.
Our goal is to make this the best experience for ALL of the Footclan, the minor fixes that go along with it are a small price to pay for the competition and camaraderie of all the savvy fantasy users that play in the tournament. My only ask of Megalabowl participants is you get to know your league-mates and have fun trying to get that Lister League entry.
The draft is the foundation of any fantasy football team, and it is especially important in the Megalabowl, where trades are not allowed and waiver options may be limited because of how competitive the Footclan is. Therefore, one must aim to draft a balanced and robust roster that can withstand injuries, bye weeks, and most importantly… lots of victories.
Here are some draft strategies to consider:
WRs tend to have a steep learning curve in their rookie season, as they have to adjust to the speed and complexity of the NFL game, develop chemistry with their quarterbacks, and learn the nuances of their routes. However, in their second year, they often show significant improvement, as they have more experience and confidence. This isn’t the case just for the receivers at the top of the draft like Garret Wilson or Chris Olave but could see huge value in 2nd year wideouts such as Jahan Dotson, Romeo Doubs, or someone cheap like Isaiah Hodgins.
Running Backs Coming Back from Injury
Running Back injuries are killer, especially those that affect the lower body, such as knee, ankle, or hamstring injuries. These injuries can limit their explosiveness, agility, and durability, and reduce their fantasy value. However, some RBs can bounce back from injury and regain their previous form, or even surpass it. RBs coming back from injury can be risky picks in fantasy drafts, as they may not be fully recovered or may suffer a setback. This could mean big value from players like Breece Hall and Javonte Williams who seem to be ahead of their recovery schedule and possibly a league winner if they make it back to full strength and workload early in the season – while their ADP lags.
Players that Could Take on a Bigger Role in their New Offense
Some players change teams or coaches in the offseason, which can affect their role and usage in their new offense. Some players may benefit from a change of scenery, as they may find a better fit for their skills, a more favorable scheme, or a more supportive coach. This is most prevalent in WR usage.
- Chargers and Ravens players with new OCs
- Calvin Ridley’s debut with the Jaguars
- James Cook emerging as the BUF workhorse
Tiers are a way of grouping players by similar projected fantasy points, regardless of position. Value-based drafting is a way of comparing players by their projected fantasy points relative to their average draft position (ADP). Both methods help you identify the best available player at any given point in the draft, based on their expected production and scarcity. For example, if you are deciding between two players in different positions but in the same tier, you should choose the one who has a lower ADP or a higher value score.
Roster Management Strategy
The draft is only the beginning of the fantasy football season. In order to win the Megalabowl, one must also manage their roster effectively throughout the season, making smart decisions on waivers, lineups, and playoffs. Here are some roster management strategies to consider:
Be Aggressive on Waivers
Waivers are a crucial source of roster improvement, as they allow you to add players who emerge as stars or benefit from injuries or opportunities during the season. In order to maximize your chances of landing these players, you should be aggressive on waivers, using a significant portion of your FAAB budget or waiver priority early in the season when there are more potential league winners available. The Megalabowl is known to have ultra-aggressive waivers, since only the top-3 make it into playoffs it is ever more important to get off to a hot start
Optimize your Lineups
Lineups are another key factor in determining your fantasy success, as they allow you to choose which players to start or bench each week based on their matchups, projections, and upside. In order to optimize your lineups, you should use reliable sources of information such as rankings, projections, and matchups to help you make informed decisions. You should also consider factors such as weather, injuries, trends, and variance when setting your lineups. The Fantasy Footballers DFS Podcast is a great resource to hear player-by-player analysis and advice besides the main podcast.
Use Stacking & Correlation
Stacking is when you pair players from the same team or game who have a positive correlation (tendency to score more points together), such as a quarterback and a wide receiver. Correlation is when you pair players from different teams or games who have a positive correlation, such as a running back and a defense. Both methods help you capture more points from a single event or outcome, such as a touchdown pass or a defensive turnover – increasing the upside you need to be one of the top teams in your league.
The playoffs are the final stage of the Megalabowl, where the top three teams from each league compete in a playoff pool, where they need to score in the top 50% of playoff teams in the pool to advance to the next week. This doesn’t mean you need a huge week to move on to the next round though, stick with making sound lineup decisions balancing ceiling and floor. Here are some tips for adapting to the playoffs:
Focus on Floor but Shoot for Ceiling
In the playoffs, you need to balance your lineup between players who have a high floor (minimum expected points) and players who have a high ceiling (maximum potential points). A high floor helps you avoid a low score that could eliminate you from contention, while a high ceiling helps you achieve a high score that could secure your advancement. You should aim to have a mix of both types of players in your lineup, depending on your risk tolerance and confidence level.
THIS is the week to shoot for the stars. You need to be the highest-scoring team, previous winners have scored closer to 200 pts or above. You want to go for stacks, higher upside, and bold plays here. Play that waiver add or fringe guy if you think he’s going to have a big week, doubt your opponents will.