Whether you’re a fantasy football veteran or an eager first timer, there are certain things every player should know for draft day. This article is going to cover some of the basics you need to know to succeed in your fantasy football draft. Let us call them the Fantasy Football Draft Day 10 Commandments.
1. You shall not draft a kicker until the last round
Plain and simple, kickers are too hard to predict from week to week, and are essentially a dime-a-dozen in fantasyland. Sure, some kickers are better than others and if you want to waste a 9th round pick on Mason Crosby then go ahead, just don’t say we didn’t warn you.
2. You shall know your league settings
This seems like a very basic rule, but it is shocking to hear about the number of people who join a fantasy league and prepare for their draft without knowing the rules of their league. Important things for you to know include, how many of each position you can start, do your players get points for receptions, and does your quarterback get 4 or 6 points for each passing touchdown. Knowing these basic rules can help you adequately rank players and choose which players need to be moved up and down the draft board.
3. You shall not draft your hometown heroes too early
Sure, it’s fun to have some players from the home team on your roster, but don’t overrate them and draft them too early at the expense of your fantasy team. Get the best players you can and you’ll still be rooting for the home team guys whether or not they’re on your fantasy team.
4. You shall not buy into the rookie hype
Rookies definitely play a prominent role for fantasy owners each season, but they rarely give owners return on investment on where they have to be taken on draft day. We’re certainly not saying to not draft rookies, just don’t take them a couple rounds too early because they were over-hyped during the preseason.
5. You shall know your sleepers picks
A lot of people get fixated on the first round picks, but fantasy leagues are won and lost in the later rounds. Drafting value in the early rounds paired with the ability to pick players that will outperform their draft position in the mid to late rounds is the formula for any successful fantasy football draft. Do your homework and know what players you want to target later in the draft.
6. You shall adapt to the draft
Each year there is the inevitable tight end rush usually between the 4th and 6th round. Sure, a top-tier tight end option is a viable pick here, but don’t feel pressured to fill your tight end position because everyone else is. Let everybody else draft all the top guys at a position too early and you just concentrate on stacking up talent other positions. This rule also applies to the team defense and individual defensive player runs that usually happen later in drafts.
7. You shall draft best player available in the first few rounds
Do not reach on players in the early rounds, get value. If you see a valuable player being undervalued, grab him even if you leave the draft with a lopsided team. You’ll have plenty of time to fill positions later in the draft.
8. You shall use fantasy smack talk for all of your fantasy football needs
Of course we would like you to use our website for ALL your fantasy needs, but we encourage you to visit multiple sites and get a consensus from multiple fantasy experts. We’ll be here all season with weekly waiver wire articles, start’em sit’em tips, and much more. If you have a specific fantasy football questions, join our fantasy football forum moderated by our fantasy experts.
9. You shall be aware of bye weeks, injuries, and suspensions
It is critical to know about all the latest injuries, trades, signings, suspensions and depth chart changes before draft day. Don’t rely entirely on fantasy magazines since a lot of the information is often out-of-date at the time of your draft. Having your computer up and running during draft day allows for up-to-the-minute player updates.
10. You shall get running back depth
Draft running backs early and often. The running back position is as thin as ever and there are fewer viable fantasy RBs than there are players at other positions. It is a good idea to draft at least one running back with one of your first two picks and it is not uncommon to have at least four or five running backs by the 10th round. In the late rounds, take chances on running backs with upside rather than filling your roster with a second tight end or second team defense. Having depth at running back will save yourself the headache and stress if one or more of your backs gets injured, and it also allows for a lot of bargaining power in the trade market.