History of VBD
Our co-founder Joe Bryant first came up with the principles of Value Based Drafting and has written about it extensively. If the term is new to you, please first read one of his articles about the topic - here's a good one: Value Based Drafting.
Evolution of VBD
Since the formation of Value Based Drafting, it has evolved over time into a more complicated topic. The Draft Dominator will always contain our latest and greatest attempts to optimize draft theory.
The application makes a number of adjustments to where the VBD baselines are set. Positionally, we apply factors based on a replaceability factor for your league. So for instance, in standard leagues, quarterbacks and tight ends are considered more replaceable than running backs and wide receivers. Kickers and team defenses are more replaceable still. So the baselines at some positions are modified to account for this. These modifications can be adjusted from the Adjust Positions screen under the Rankings panel (with the sliders icon) above the cheatsheet.
Value Based Drafting is just one of the three strategies we apply to rankings for standard snake drafts.
The second is Positional Need. This is increasingly factored in as the draft progresses, to ensure the Draft Dominator's recommendations result in a balanced roster for you.
The third is Next Pick Drop-Offs. The application will always be projecting what other teams will do between your current pick and when you're next on the clock. Based on these projections, the player pool now and the projected player pool for your next pick are compared. If a position is seen to be the focus of other team's picks between your current and next pick, the valuation of players at that position will be increased for your current pick.
Balancing The Three Factors
The balance between these three factors - VBD, Positional Need, and next pick drop-offs is automatically balanced and adjusted as the draft progresses. VBD is all but discarded towards the end of the draft, for instance, and Positional Need becomes increasingly important at the same time.
The application also maintains a balance between our standard redraft projections and our "upside" projections. These projections chart the best-case scenarios for each player. Later on in the draft, the application will automatically switch to using the upside projections more and more, so players with higher upside - aka, sleepers - can be suggested automatically. Again, this behavior can be overridden from the Rankings panel (with the sliders icon) above the players list.