As my fantasy drafts quickly approach, I thought it would be fitting to share some of my own personal draft day rules. Like a kid on Christmas morning, draft day has become one of the most anticipated days of the year for me and all other fantasy geeks. Follow these 5 simple rules to make sure you have a successful draft.
1) Be Prepared
This may sound really simple, but it is by far the most important rule for draft day. It is important to have a clear idea about who you are targeting in the first three rounds as these are critical to building the foundation of your team. Just as important is a list of late round value players that you want to target after round ten.
Most guys show up with a few print outs of rankings from one or two sites, or perhaps a fantasy football magazine purchased on the way to the draft. I recommend doing some homework before hand by figuring out an average ranking of a few sites while utilizing deviations in ranks. The deviation will give you an idea if there is a lack of consensus between the ” Experts”. Also, I always pay attention to the rankings provided by Yahoo and other hosting sites. You will always come across a few guys who follow the provided rankings to a T. These are the guys you want to take advantage of at the draft.
2) The RB/RB Rule Is Obsolete
The old adage that you must take a two running backs in the first two rounds no longer applies. The game of football has evolved over the past few years to a multi -back attack, making the single back offense a dying breed. This is why the first three running backs in my rankings are so valuable, as they are going to receive the lion’s share of carries for their respective team. If you are not so fortuneate to land a top five or six pick, don’t be afraid to use your pick on a top tier wideout or quarterback. It makes sense to use that “foundation” pick on a sure thing as opposed to a running back that will lose carries.
As I mentioned in rule #1, it Is important to be prepared for your draft with lists of both overall rankings and sleepers/value picks. With that said, it is also important to be flexible and not pass up a good opportunity because the draft isnt going according to your projections. It never fails that someone takes one of your sleeper picks very early, or a run on mid round running backs throws you off your game. My advice is to understand that you cannot control other managers, and it is a given that someone is going to make a bonehead pick that throws off the other owners.
4) Do Not Take A Kicker Before The Last Two Rounds
Many writers have been preaching this for years, yet for some reason managers continue to use mid to late round picks on kickers. Although kickers are an important part of your team, there is not much difference between the top tier and middle tier players. To make matters worse a solid kicker one year can be terrible the next. I would rather use my earlier picks on bench wideouts and running backs who I can use tor trade bate later in the season.
5) Do Not Be Afraid To Trade
This doesn’t really apply to the draft, but it is something that all fantasy players must know. Trading players is one the most fun aspects of fantasy football. It is fun to negotiate and then sit back to see who got the better end of the deal. Some managers are so worried about getting screwed over that they dont make a trade, missing out on a possible opportunity to improve their team. I have run my own fantasy football league for ten years, and in those ten years I have taken home the trophy three times. I went back and looked my winning rosters and found that a trade or two is what put me over the top.
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