Fantasy Football: Why Two Quarterbacks?

Superflex? Maybe this is just me, but “superflex” sounds like something you’d find in a sports equipment store, not on a fantasy football site. Even so, superflex and two-quarterback leagues are a growing phenomenon within the fantasy football world, and they appear here to stay.

The essential element of a league like that is that your starting lineup can include two quarterbacks every week, rather than the typical league which allows only one.

In a superflex league, you can start the typical wide receiver or running back in your flex spot, but you also have the option of throwing a second quarterback in there. In a 2QB league, you are required to start two signal callers.

Either way, you’ll be required to make lineup decisions you never considered before. Questions like, “Should I start Joe Flacco or Sam Bradford?” will become routine. During the bye weeks, you will struggle with questions like, “Should I cut Marvin Jones to pick up E. J. Manuel?”

Why Start Two Quarterbacks?

Even though two-quarterback leagues are growing in popularity, they are still far from the norm. Many longtime fantasy football players still scoff at superflex leagues, and most major sites still don’t cater to the format. So it is fair to ask, “Why start two quarterbacks?”

But, Toto, that’s not how we do things in Kansas.

One of the main criticisms of the two-quarterback formats is that they are nothing like the real NFL, because NFL teams don’t start two quarterbacks.

So let’s get one thing straight here at the outset: fantasy football has never been an effort to perfectly mirror the NFL. NFL teams don’t start two running backs; they start one, even if it’s a running back by committee. Additionally, NFL general managers have to study individual defensive players intensely, and the IDP format is only used in roughly two-three percent of all fantasy football leagues. Finally, the NFL cares deeply about offensive linemen, positions which are irrelevant to fantasy owners. Fantasy football’s highest goal is not, therefore, to mirror the NFL.

Most of us who play are looking for entertainment and a competitive challenge. Most of that challenge comes from the educated guesswork of having to decide which players are worth owning and which are worth starting.

So in a typical league format, on the offensive side of the ball you’ll need to start 1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, and a flex (either RB or WR). So in ten-team leagues, you’ll end up starting 10 NFL quarterbacks, but up to 30 running backs and wide receivers. That means there isn’t parity between the positions. You’re picking and choosing among the elite quarterbacks, but you’re scouring the dregs of the running back position on a weekly basis.

Should I start Terrelle Pryor?

In 2013, fantasy owners in traditional leagues wouldn’t have been starting quarterbacks much worse than Russell Wilson or Colin Kaepernick, but running backs like Rashard Mendenhall and Donald Brown finished within the top thirty at their position. Like many analysts are beginning to point out, why bother drafting a quarterback before the tenth round? You know you have twelve to fifteen great options at the position.

Then during the year you may not spend more than twenty seconds each week on your quarterback position. You know you’re starting Andrew Luck, so just lock and load. Instead, you spend all your time on the running back and wide receiver positions. Heck, your D/ST slot usually takes more thought than your quarterback position.

At least for me, that’s not how I want to play fantasy football. I want to focus on the position that makes the NFL great. I want to study the quarterbacks, and I want to look for rising talent. I want to dominate my league the way coaches dominate the NFL – by finding the elite young quarterbacks before they’re even starters.

So What Changes When You Start Two Quarterbacks?

In two-quarterback leagues, owners found themselves breaking down Terrelle Pryor’s game the last two years, and I consider that a good thing.

Once you join a superflex or 2QB league, you will begin to hone in on the lesser-ranked quarterbacks. You’ll study the incoming rookies with much more diligence than you ever thought possible. You will ask yourself whether Teddy Bridgewater can be the next Andrew Luck or whether he’s going to be Ryan Leaf. You will research Ryan Tannehill’s last two years to see if he’s growing as a passer. And you’ll love it.

Where Should You Start?

Once you begin, you’ll desperately search for resources talking about the format and about the lower-ranked quarterbacks. You will quickly realize that the main sites stick to traditional formats and don’t provide a lot of advice for superflex leagues. So let me suggest a few resources to check out.

First, sign up for Twitter. This is a must. I do not care what opinion you have of Twitter. You need to join. Twitter is home to the best football minds, and you will find fantastic advice and insight that you won’t find reading the major sites. You can also get personal responses to your questions, which you can’t get if you just stick to TV and the major websites.

Once you’re on Twitter, here are a few must-follows for two-quarterback leagues:

    • @2QBFFB, Salvatore Stefanile. He’s the Godfather of the 2QB format and one of the friendliest folks you’ll meet on Twitter.

 

 

 

    • @pgrossman31, Paul writes and tweets often about 2QB leagues.

 

    • @RyanMc23, Ryan McDowell is a senior writer for Dynasty League Football, and he puts together dozens of mocks every offseason. He’s a great source for 2QB dynasty mocks and general ADP data.

 

    • @EDH_27, Eric Hardter is another senior writer for DLF, and he’s a great source of info regarding 2QB dynasty leagues.

 

  • And if you’d like, shoot me a message. I’m at @LakeTwoQBs.

Second, once you’ve started following those guys on Twitter, check out their websites. That should get you rolling with great content. And if you’re missing anything, send them a message. The 2QB community is incredibly helpful, and every one of those folks would be thrilled to point you in the right direction.

4 Comments

  1. Chuck

    April 28, 2014 at 8:29 am

    Im in a superflex auction league ( never knew it to be called that) where we can start anyone except a D/ST as a flex. Yes I have used a K at one time. Obviously QBs are the highest bid players.

    • Josh Lake

      April 28, 2014 at 8:30 am

      That’s smart. QBs put up the highest fantasy point totals annually, so everyone will want to start them at flex if possible.

  2. tim bradley

    August 13, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    I’m in a 10 man 1 point PPR league. QBs earn 4 points per TD. This is our first year using a superflex. I’m not sure about draft strategy. With 4 points per TD for QBs, should I draft 2 QBs first and the WRs and RBs or just take the best players as in a PPR league. I have #2 pick. Any suggestions?

    Thanks for any help

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