There is No Offseason MFL10s are Opening this Week

By Jen Ryan
Do you get that empty feeling on Super Bowl Monday? I do. The finality of the football season hits me like a ton of bricks. Sixteen games are not enough. The 27 weeks of daily fantasy football, which include the pre and postseason, still does not feel like enough. There is a dread that comes with the end of the football season, a real sense of “Now what?”

Lucky for all of us, the fine folks over at My Fantasy League echo my mantra that there is no offseason, and they take right around six weeks off from football before fantasy leagues open for them again. Drafting a fantasy football team in February? That is exactly right. Here is some back story.

Not too long ago, in the mid-90’s, Emil Kadlec was in an experts’ league that was looking for a change. The league was wearing thin of having to set lineups each week, work waivers and trades. A light bulb went off in Emil’s head: what if we expanded the rosters, draft a deeper team, and forget about roster management, waivers and trades? That light bulb was the creation of what we now affectionately refer to as best ball. He also had another light bulb go off when he created the Football Diehards brand, among his many other contributions to fantasy football. You can check out Emil’s bio here: Emil Kadlec Bio

The concept of best ball is simple yet brilliant; you simply draft a team and move on. You do nothing else with this drafted team until the end of the season where you see what place you came in and what prize you won. Traditional best ball leagues are 20 rounds, while others expand up to 28 rounds. Among best ball, it is generally accepted that none are more popular than the MFL10’s (and 25’s, 50’s, and 100’s) offered by My Fantasy League, over at MFL10s.com (https://www54.myfantasyleague.com/2017/public#0).

The rules of best ball leagues offered by My Fantasy League are simple enough. You make a deposit on their site, and enter any one of their leagues. Here are the entry fee/payout structures:


All of the leagues have the same settings and scoring rules. Each league is comprised of 12 teams and each team drafts to fill 20 roster spots composed of quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends and team defense/special teams. Unlike your home league drafts, when you are on the clock for 90 seconds, you have up to EIGHT hours to make a pick. You will receive an email notifying you that you are on the clock, so be mindful of that clock. In the event that you time out two picks in a row, you will be set to auto-draft for the remainder of the draft, and wind up with a team you may not be thrilled with.

For the 20 players you draft, your starting lineup with feature one quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end, one flex (RB/WR/TE), and one team defense. “The highest-scoring players for each of these positions will automatically be placed into your starting lineup each week: THERE IS NO MANAGEMENT OF THESE TEAMS REQUIRED OR ALLOWED AFTER THE DRAFT.” You can find official scoring here: http://www53.myfantasyleague.com/2012/options?L=74930&O=09

There are many reasons why I love drafting in best ball leagues. The convenience factor of being able to draft from a computer or cell phone is a major plus. There is no pressure to beat the clock, but I do recommend being mindful of your league mates and not abuse the eight hour clock. Another appealing aspect of best ball leagues, specifically MFL10s, is the authenticity of the draft. What I mean by that is, you can spend time over the summer on mock drafts, or you can spend $10 here and there on paid drafts to get a more true sense of ADP. If you do enough of those, you will walk into your home league drafts as a seasoned pro.

I was recently on the RotoViz Radio Best Ball Show (you can listen here: RotoViz Radio Best Ball Show with Jen) where we spoke about many aspects of best ball, including strategy. I will not claim to be a best ball expert, but over the past two seasons I have participated in well over 150 paid drafts. While I, like many others, failed to profit in 2016, I remain in the green overall. I will claim to have a good amount of experience, and am most definitely a volume player. Here are a few pieces of advice, if you will indulge me:
- Decide what type of player you want to be: Are you aiming for ten drafts? Over 100? Know your investment in advance.
- Monitor ADP: We update ADP directly from My Fantasy League’s data base each week. If you know a thing or two about excel, you can easily import weekly ADP and keep tabs on players who rise and fall.
- Pay attention to roster construction: In general, you will want to stick to 2-3 quarterbacks, 2-3 tight ends, and 2-3 defenses. The rest of your roster will be composed of running backs and wide receivers. A very smart colleague and friend of mine, Mike Beers (https://twitter.com/beerswater) is a data machine and has studied literally every single draft since best ball leagues opened. Feel free to ask him anything data-related you can think of, and tell him I sent you. Below is a table of the top ten win rates, by percentage, of the close to 5,000 drafts completed in 2016:


Fascinating stuff.
- Diversify your portfolio of players: You do not want 100% exposure to any one player due to the variance of football and the inherent risk that comes along with it. If you drafted in ten leagues in 2016 and all ten had Jamaal Charles then you essentially lit $100 on fire. I personally try to keep my exposure to around 20-25% per player, but if there is a player you are high on you can take a chance and have him on a third of your rosters.
- Select the auto-tweet option in your settings before your draft: I did not know many people in the MFL10 community when I started out in 2015. That all changed when I began drafted and selected the option for my picks to be auto-tweeted. The conversations and knowledge I gained through them were priceless. If you auto-tweet your picks, people will engage. Keep an open mind and have open dialogue.
- Never be shy about asking questions: I can only speak for myself, but I am sure I am echoing the sentiments of many in the best ball community. Conversation helps us both. If you ever have a question, want to pick brains, or even debate, I encourage you. I love talking about all things best ball and am always available on Twitter (https://twitter.com/FFdeJENerate) for healthy, best ball dialogue.

The MFL10 lobby is scheduled to open this week. Drafting in February is tricky and fun. Drafting in August is tricky and fun. Drafting is always tricky and fun. I will be in there drafting throughout the entire offseason. I hope to see you in the lobby.


John Laub

Jen Ryan

Bob Harris

Armando Marsal

Dave Hunter