Links to Guillotine league discussions:
A Guillotine league usually consists of 18 teams. Each week, the lowest-scoring team is eliminated. The players on their roster then become free agents.
Your strategy needs to change with such a high number of participants and other format changes.
To help you with this unique format, we asked our staff questions. Here is the latest.
In a Guillotine league, what is your approach when drafting backups? What traits are you looking for?
My goal was to avoid backups because of the format. You don't have the luxury of rostering promising young players who don't have clear featured roles in Week 1, and we also know there will be a treasure trove of high-value players available on waivers each week, thanks to the format. But in an 18-team league, eventually, you have to roster backups, so my final two picks were skill players who won't have heavy snap counts initially, but I think could be contributors by the end of September. Guillotine drafting is less about late-season upside and more about early-season predictable snaps.
With other teams' starters increasingly available on waivers as the season progresses, I don't want to hold backups with no chance of becoming an unquestioned starter if injury creates an opportunity. Backups from poor offenses are also unappealing. James Robinson is a proven workhorse if Travis Etienne goes down again. And Ke'Shawn Vaughn is the most experienced backup on the Buccaneers' depth chart after Leonard Fournette (dusty vets Gio Bernard and Kenjon Barner notwithstanding).
With my late-round picks, I'm trying to find backups that provide at least some value if I have to start them in a pinch. That means a running back with a passing down role or wide receivers that do a good job of earning targets when they're on the field. Having the backup to one of your starters is helpful, but in this format, I prefer to have liquidity on my bench instead of players I'd feel compelled to keep on my roster all season.
Ideally, you want a high floor player with some PPR reliability or a player that can be a strong/safe play if they get a chance to start due to injury, but in an 18-team league, you have to take what you can get. In this case, I took Jared Goff to back up Jameis Winston just in case the Saints have a low pass volume approach like they did last year. Goff should be a safe high-floor QB2. I took Khalil Herbert because he showed he is starting quality when he got in last year. I took Randall Cobb because he was a solid play most any time he got at least 5 targets last year. I took Mo Alie-Cox because he could have a lot larger passing game role with the retirement of Jack Doyle and the introduction of a better passer at quarterback in Matt Ryan. I took Jeff Wilson and Matt Breida because I believe they will be the most valuable backup RB on their teams if the starter goes down.
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