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7 Rules to a Better Fantasy Football Draft

7 Rules to a Better Fantasy Football Draft

1. Study your league! Know the point structure inside and out before the draft. You will find weaknesses in the point structure that you can exploit for your draft day bonanza. If you get 6 points for a rushing touchdown but only 4 points for a passing touchdown you may see how a Vince Young could score more points than a Matt Hasselbeck. If you get 1 point for every ten yards but six for a touchdown, a back that is placed in goal line situations could outscore a back that runs for over 100 yards. This is the most important rule and that is why I have placed it first.

2. You must participate in a live draft. If you auto set your draft it can lead to disaster. If your league does not have a live draft it will be hard for you to react to what the other players in your league are doing. If you see all running backs going in the first two rounds but you have all your picks go and you have two quarterbacks set next then you will be stuck with a two quarterbacks and no one else in your backfield. It is critical that you are available on draft day for your team to be set up to win your league.

3. The First Round is already set for you – In the first round remember that you are looking to draft the highest fantasy point player on the board. That means that with the exception of maybe Tom Brady or Peyton Manning, you are going to draft a running back in the first round. Follow your spot and draft the highest available player in the rankings in that first round. You are not going to win the league with just one player but you can lose it by not following the order here.

4. You must take a running back in the second round if you are in the bottom of the picking order and you are in a reverse pick round. If you are in 12 to 15 round league and you are pick 16 you must take the best available running back. Before the second round is over you can be certain that a good running back will not be available. A lot of people want to pick a quarterback or receiver at this point but the best available player strategy would lead us to pick a second tier running back because they will be worth more points in the long run.

5. The third round is where you should look for your first wide receiver or a second tier quarterback. If you are at the top of the round you may want to go for a top receiver like Terrell Owens. If you are at the back of the round you may want to look at the best available quarterback. Remember that the point drop off from a second or third tier receiver is great but there is not much difference between them when that is all that is available. You can start getting them in the later rounds so do not waste a pick here.

6. Do not draft a kicker before the 10th round. You would be wasting a pick. A few years ago a lot of people picked Janikowski in the sixth or seventh round. They could have used that pick to sure up receiver or tight end. But they thought they were getting a fantasy steal at that point. I have never found records of a kicker that was so much better that I had to draft him so far ahead of other kickers. Now that is not to say that if you do see 7 or 8 kickers go off the board in the third round you may need to start bragging about how you have won your fantasy league or change to a more competitive league.

7. Do not underestimate the value of a good defense. Last year the Giants defense may have allowed points and a lot of yardage but in the league I was in I got almost 16 points a week from them on the sack value alone. Sacks were worth two points in one of my leagues and they got at least two a week. You must study the point value for a defense and you could be able to find a good one that no one else is watching in the later rounds.