With training camp and the NFL preseason well underway, attention can now turn to more important things, fantasy football drafts. Players everywhere are registering their teams (Cromartie’s Kids is still one of best I’ve heard) and doing endless mock drafts.
In preparation for draft season, here’s a few tips to consider when planning for an effective draft. Here are my six steps to effective drafting:
1. Fluidity - Drafting is not an exact science. Just because Saints TE Jimmy Graham is projected to go in RD3, don’t fall apart if he goes early in RD2. Always keep an open mind and be able to change your strategy on the fly. When you only have two minutes, you MUST be able to make quick decisions.
2. Avoid “Reverse” Sticker Shock - Don’t fall victim to name recognition. It’s common for fantasy team owners to select players solely based on past accomplishments without considering the current scenario. Chris Johnson was still considered a Top Five draft pick last year. However, with the lockout, no OTAs and his holdout, the red flags were waving that he may have a down year.
3. Draft to Your League - If your league awards one point per 20-25 rushing yards without bonuses, yet offers one point per 10 receiving yards, drafting Steven Jackson is pretty pointless. Look for a back with more catches out of the backfield. Take full advantage of your league’s scoring system and draft accordingly.
4. Be Mindful of “Byes”, Just Don’t Rely on Them - There’s no exact strategy when dealing with bye weeks. Some players space them out, others prefer them all in one shot. When drafting bench players or depth, keep the byes in mind but don’t pass up a late round steal because of them.
5. In Fantasy, It’s Quantity OVER Quality - This is especially true with auction drafts or salary caps. While you may be tempted to risk it all for Rodgers or Brees, getting 2-3 solid stars will serve you better than trying to live or die with one stud.
6. Be Aware of Coaching/Philosophy - Be aware of coaching changes or changes is coaching philosophy. While Matt Forte was a catching machine under Bears OC Mike Martz, new OC Mike Tice and WR Brandon Marshall will certainly change that.