Scott Fish Bowl | An Early Look Into Strategy

by Aaron St. Denis · Draft Strategy

For us hardcore players, fantasy draft season doesn’t begin in August. It kicks off far sooner with the start of The Scott Fish Bowl.

You might be wondering what the Scott Fish Bowl is. Well, that’s simple. The Scott Fish Bowl is the largest fantasy football competition on earth. It was created by Devy football mastermind Scott Fish. SFB, as it’s known to those who play in it, will be entering its 13th season in 2023 and has become a massive contributor to the charity. The Scott Fish Bowl is a fantasy football competition that had over 3,000 players in 2022.

This article is going to be a summary of my favorite draft strategy to employ for SFB. At the time of writing, SFB13 settings have yet to be released and the strategy will be based on SFB12 settings. Most years the format is largely unchanged and only sees minor tweaks. Therefore, this shouldn’t impact my strategy significantly. However, you should still check the SFB13 settings to confirm and re-calibrate the strategy accordingly. 

The Settings

One of the reasons the Scott Fish Bowl is truly unique is that it’s balanced scoring across all positions leads to a diverse range of draft strategies. It’s not your run-of-the-mill 1QB league. Instead, it is a superflex, tight end premium, half PPR league. Additionally, the league rewards accurate quarterbacks far greater than inaccurate volume passers.

In typical drafts, we see four rounds of managers loading up on running backs and wide receivers while largely ignoring quarterback and tight end. This is not the case in the SFB. In the Scott Fish Bowl, the superflex and tight-end settings serve to balance things out. As a result, there are a variety of positions drafted throughout. It’s important to avoid drafting just any quarterback though, as mentioned before. Quarterbacks are punished with negative points if they have a completion percentage below 66-percent.

In most leagues, kickers are typically drafted in the last round of fantasy drafts but not in the SFB. In the Scott Fish Bowl, managers draft kickers earlier than you will see in any other league. This is because they can be played in the flex spot. As a result, many managers draft multiple kickers.

The Rosters

Scott Fish Bowl features more unique customization in its roster configuration. As stated above, it is a superflex. This means you have the option to start between one and two quarterbacks each week. Ideally, fantasy gamers should always start two quarterbacks for optimal strategy. Furthermore, rosters consist of two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end and a whopping three flex positions for a total of 11 starters and 11 bench spots with no injured reserve. As stated above, it gets interesting when it comes to kickers because they can be used as a flex. At some point, the running back and wide receiver pool will dry up and kickers become a better option to flex.

There is no trading allowed in SFB. However, there is a waiver wire that operates with a FAAB (free agent acquisition budget) of $100 for each manager. That budget doesn’t last long and running backs are almost non-existent on the waiver wire. For this reason, your Scott Fish Bowl draft is more important than ever before.

Robust QB/Stud TE Strategy

Let’s take a look at my Team from 2022:

Aaron St. Denis SFB12 Roster (Courtesy of

In The Beginning

As the title would indicate, I planned to leave the first three rounds with one elite tight end and two reliable quarterbacks. I intended to draft Tom Brady at 1.10 and then take a tight end in Round 2. However, Travis Kelce and Kyle Pitts went at picks 1.08 and 1.09, so I scooped up Mark Andrews and opted to wait on a quarterback.

When the draft snaked back around to Round 2, Brady was still on the board. Naturally, I pounced on him. I then got to move up in Round 3 thanks to a much-needed round three reversal. When my pick came up at 3.03, all of the young quarterbacks had flown off the board. Therefore, I opted to take consistent, but boring, Kirk cousins. This suited me just fine as I was particularly high on both Brady and Cousins going into the 2022 seasons. However, both would go on to disappoint me.

Time to Find a Running Back

My original plan was to wait a bit longer to draft a running back. However, for a superflex draft, a surprisingly large number of running backs were drafted quicker than I thought. As a result, I opted to draft back-to-back running backs. Neither David Montgomery nor James Conner excited me. But I knew that if they were able to stay healthy, I would be able to ride them to solid production.

My plan as I progressed through the mid to late rounds was to hammer running back as often as possible. Therefore, I knew I needed to draft a solid and reliable running back duo at this point in the draft while there were still a few left on the board. This pick set was more about establishing a solid floor than anything else. I needed to know I had two running backs I could set and forget most weeks. While they both had their issues throughout the year, it proved to be a solid approach.

Building a WR Room

I fully intended to leave the next two rounds with two high-floor, reliable wide receivers. I accomplished this goal by drafting Mike Williams and Drake London. However, due to injury concerns, I was also able to draft Chris Godwin at a significant discount. This proved to be a good value pick. However, it was a pick that left me needing to fill a wide receiver spot early in the season while Godwin recovered from injury. At this point in the draft, it’s about finding those mid-round receivers that can become this year’s Cooper Kupp.

These players tend to be relatively safe. Most of them will at least meet their ADP, and a handful of them each season will be the breakout star of the season. In this case, all three failed to crush their ADP. Instead, they gave me a solid return on investment. These picks didn’t turn out exactly as I had hoped, but the process was sound.

Mining For Depth

Over the next four rounds my strategy was simple, take whatever value falls to meet at wide receiver and running back. In this case, it turned out to be alternating picks between running back and wide receiver. I selected Kareem Hunt, Christian Kirk, Rhamondre Stevenson and Garrett Wilson.

This section of the draft proves this strategy to be a sound one. I padded my roster out with players that I intended to be nothing more than bench players. Instead, I  landed outright studs on three of the four picks. Hunt was largely disappointing, and by mid-season wasn’t even useful as a bye-week fill-in. However, Kirk, Wilson and Stevenson all crushed their ADP. So while the previous groups of wide receivers and running backs that I selected came in closer to average, this group popped off and soon became a crucial part of my team.

Switching Gears

By Round 12, I expected to turn my attention from the rapidly depleting pool of players and toward the untapped kicker pool. In the end, I waited until Round 13 as the upside of Garrett Wilson was simply too much to pass up. When Round 13 rolled around, only one kicker had gone off the board, Justin Tucker. So, I decided to select my PK2 Evan McPherson as he had a much higher likelihood of being a usable flex player under these settings than did the remainder of the receivers and running backs.

I originally planned to take one or two additional kickers over the next three rounds, but by the time I was back on the clock in Round 14 nine additional kickers had gone off the board. The value at kicker had simply vanished. I was then left with no choice but to shift gears once again and adapt on the fly to what the draft board was giving me.

Dart Throw Season

Over the next seven rounds, there was little to no value left on the board. The quarterbacks that would make for serviceable bye-week fill-ins were long gone, and the tight end pool was equally as depleted. So over the next seven rounds, I took repeated dart throw shots on young, upside wide receivers who I thought could breakout and backup running backs who could see a huge bump in their value should the starter go down with an injury.

The running backs I drafted in this section were all sizeable busts and were on the waiver wire within the first month of the season. Marlon Mack, Eno Benjamin and Tyrion Davis Price failed to produce a usable fantasy week between the three of them which goes to show that even with a good draft strategy, you still need to have some luck and hit on late-round picks.

My wide receiver picks in this section were more successful but not by much. Devin Duvernay produced several solid weeks when Rashod Bateman was out with injury. Parris Campbell too had his occasional week of usefulness. On the other hand, I also experienced some bad luck with my three misses. K.J. Osborn never broke out like expected, Will Fuller remained an unsigned free agent, and John Metchie was lost for the season with a leukemia diagnosis.

Closing It Out

My plan all along was to wait until the final two rounds of the draft to take a backup quarterback and tight end. The quarterback pool was so depleted I chose to ignore it. Instead, my plan was to wait for a starter to go down to acquire his backup off the waiver wire. The tight-end pool was not completely depleted, and I took a value pick in Greg Dulcich in Round 22.

Final Recap

My strategy throughout this draft was fairly straightforward. I made sure to start with reliable quarterbacks and an elite tight end before turning my attention to the other positions. From there, I let the draft board tell me where to go next. I made sure to build a stable core of wide receivers and running backs and from there, it was about swinging for the fences. Even though the strategy came up just short for me in 2022, it is still the optimal draft strategy. 2022 played out in the worst-case scenario for my team as my core produced closer to their floor and my lottery tickets were all largely a disappointment. Regardless of this failure, the strategy was good.

In addition to throwing as many darts throws as you can, it’s also important to keep an eye on the board for tight ends and quarterbacks that may fall down the draft board and provide you with solid value as a backup. Additionally, it’s important to transition to kicker at the appropriate time when the player pool starts to dry up. This typically occurs around Round 12.

Whatever your strategy is in the end, just know that you will require a great deal of luck and will have to hit on a larger-than-normal amount of your lottery ticket picks. After all, it’s a 3,000-player tournament.