This strategy guide contains references to our Value Based Drafting Guide. We would recommend you read that first before reading our other guides. This guide will also reference a lot of the points made in our Standard Scoring Strategy and our 1pt PPR Strategy guide. We recommend that you read these as a baseline, even if you are not playing in a standard scoring league this year.
For those of you who play on ESPN, Yahoo, or who like sitting on a fence, this is the scoring format you are most used to. 0.5pt PPR is a nice little halfway house between making Wide Receivers more competitive against Running Backs, whilst still allowing production over catches to be the biggest factor each week.
0.5pt PPR scoring is seen as the standard by some, but it is a format that has been overtaken by PPR in recent years. That shouldn’t deter you from playing the format. It has its merits and skills as much as any format. In fact, it can easily be described as the perfect balance between production and receptions. That is up to you to judge.
Now I left this guide till last not because of order or preference in league, but more so because Standard and PPR have very defined strategies. And therefore 0.5 is a small combination of either, or you can stick with the principles of standard, or the principles of PPR.
So this guide will be rather short, so as to not repeat myself and hurt our SEO rankings for this guide.
Instead of offering you a detailed strategy, I am going to just offer up some tips and tricks from the Standard Scoring Guide and the 1pt PPR Scoring Guide. If you haven’t read those; or the Value Based Drafting Guide, then you should probably hit pause here and come back when those have been digested.
Now that you have digested those, let’s look at the 5 key points that will help you in a 0.5pt PPR league.
- Understand Value Based Drafting. Do not overpay for QBs, K, DSTs or marginal TEs. Instead let the value fall to you and draft league winners. Read this first.
- Target a high volume receiving back in the first round. Running backs are king in this format, especially ones that catch over 50 balls a season
- Draft a balanced roster. By the 6th round, you should have either 3WR and 3RB or 4RB/2WR or 3RB/2WR/1TE. Any other combination will leave you a little short at running back. You will need that solid production to be successful week to week.
- Slot receivers are not as valuable in this format, so limit your exposure to them. With the exception of high volume slot receivers like Chris Godwin and Cooper Kupp, slot receivers don’t have the same value as they do in full point PPR.
- Take upside value picks from the 10th round onwards. You could make the case for sooner, and if that is your strategy, then you should do that. But beyond the 10th round you need to stop looking at production and projected points in detail and instead look at opportunity. Players like Albert Wilson Jr, John Brown, Devin Singletary are perfect opportunity players after the first 10 rounds because they have the opportunity to really produce very good numbers for your team. A lot of fantasy players tune out of drafts after the first 10 rounds as they lack excitement with the players left. But this is the area where you can win your league. If you hit on one or two players in this realm, you will make the playoffs. Those who took a chance on Patrick Mahomes and George Kittle last year will be a testament to that. But these players exist every year.
These are all points covered in the guides on our site in some detail. But it is important to understand that 0.5pt PPR is a format where taking some smart risks and gambling on upside pays dividends in a big way.
However, you need to show some caution in your first four rounds. Taking 2 top running backs here is absolutely key. And taking a player like Dalvin Cook and Leonard Fournette, who have never played 16 games, are too much of a risk for me in the opening four rounds. Players are sleeping on Gurley due to his knee, but he looks to be a much safer bet than Cook and Fournette, as it’s something he has known about and can manage. But it is also something the Rams will manage.
Another couple of players I will be sleeping on in this format is Nick Chubb, because he doesn’t catch the ball enough and then you have to worry about Kareem Hunt after the Browns bye week. And also Aaron Jones. Aaron Jones has all the talent, but LeFleur’s RBBC approach worries me, as well as Jones not really showing enough production when he has had the opportunity.
If you are torn between 2 players in the opening four or five rounds, then go with the one who has shown more consistency and the one more likely to play 16 games. These are the two great tiebreakers you should always have in your back pocket when you are setting your tiers and you are looking to break the tie between a couple of players.
The biggest risk with 0.5pt PPR is people overvalue the receptions. They look at players with a huge number of catches and they target those over those with the production. Look at stats like aDOT and YAC to determine what your receivers do with the ball when they get it. Josh Hermsmeyer’s Air Yards is also a good stat to look at to help make the most of production as well. Oh and Next Gen Stats. We did a whole podcast on this with James Koh, so give that a listen and check out the site.
Until next time, Keep Rushing.