The 2020 Best Ball Win Rate Awards and 3 Key Takeaways to Help Us Crush Again in 2021
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Image Credit: Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire. Pictured: Travis Kelce.

Shawn Siegele gives out best ball player awards and uses the best ball tools suite to help you understand why the lessons from the Best Ball Workshop crushed again in 2020.

Best ball guru Mike Beers just updated the Roster Construction Explorers with 2020 data. Next to the culminating moments of a fantasy championship, this is my favorite moment of the fantasy season. Readers who followed our three basic lessons from the workshop absolutely destroyed leagues in 2020 with a win rate of 14.5%.

Win Rates for Best Ball Workshop Practitioners

Readers who followed the advanced lessons were able to push it much higher. And the best part . . . most owners are playing best ball incorrectly, making it an easy format to exploit.

What were those three lessons and how can you implement them in your own leagues? Today I’m going to use the Best Ball Win Rates tool to discuss some of the best fantasy performances from 2020. We’ll use the insane Win Rate Explorer to place these performances in a historical context, and I’ll use the superstars to illustrate aspects of those three key elements.

As the offseason develops, we’ll go into detail with the 2021 Best Ball Workshop, including Blair Andrews’ terrific work on FFPC Superflex tactics.

Overall MVP

Alvin Kamara

As the fourth player selected, Kamara had similar win rates in FFPC and BB10s where he finished at 23.6%. Kamara was roaring along at a 26.5% win rate through Week 10, an extended opening stretch where he averaged over 27 PPG. The Drew Brees injury knocked him below 20% entering Week 16, but a historic 56-point performance allowed him to blow by Dalvin Cook and clip the low-owned James Robinson.

If we switch to BB10s for a moment in order to pull in a couple of extra years (2015 and 2016), we can see that Kamara becomes only the fourth RB in the last six years to have an ADP better than 6.0 and a win rate above 10%.

BB10 RB Win Rates, Early ADP (2015-2019)

I’ve also included Kamara’s 2018 season, where he returned a 15.8% win rate with an ADP just outside of that range. 

The 2020 season again followed this pattern where five of the first eight RBs drafted turned in a win rate below 6.0%.

Takeaway: The first-round RB approach continues to work when it’s paired with our other tactics, but it’s loaded with land mines. Despite the presence of Kamara, Cook, and Derrick Henry, Round 1 RBs returned a below-average overall win rate due to the Christian McCaffrey and Saquon Barkley injuries. You can expect the occasional massive season like McCaffrey (36.9%) in 2019 and Le’Veon Bell in 2017 (24.1%), but the majority of these RB seasons will be disappointing.

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Shawn Siegele

Author of the original Zero RB article and 2013 NFFC Primetime Grand Champion. 11-time main event league winner. 2015, 2017, 2018 titles in MFL10 of Death.

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