FANTASY FOOTBALL DRAFT DAY: FIVE TIPS TO PREPARE YOU FOR YOUR DRAFT
The most important day of the fantasy football year is coming soon. Yes, draft day is just around the corner and hopefully you have been doing your homework. You don’t want to be the guy to draft Antonio Brown with your first pick or select the guy who tore his ACL last week in training camp. Having a strategy is crucial in building a strong roster. Keep in mind that plans can go awry with a single pick, so having a back-up plan can keep your strategy from imploding when the guy in front of you snatches “your guy.”
1. Mock Drafts
Once you know where you will be picking in your draft, it is always worth investing the time in some mock drafts. While mock drafts don’t always accurately reflect what will happen in your draft, they can allow you to practice various strategies and to compare rosters afterwards.
This is especially helpful if you are in an area where picking a top Quarterback (Lamar or Mahomes) or Tight End (Kelce or Kittle) may be your best option. Going that route will change your team dramatically. It is nice to weigh out options and then decide which strategy you’re leaning towards.
Mock drafts also help you get used to selecting players “on the clock.” Timers add pressure and pressure changes things. Certain sites also grade your drafts, not that the grades reflect accurately the quality of your selected roster, but they can give you a gauge otherwise not available. Mock drafts also help you build your confidence and feel prepared.
2. Trickle Effect
Some drafts go silky smooth while others throw you for a loop. There are usually one or two league members that reach for a player and throw things off. This one action creates a trickle effect, allowing top players to plummet down the draft board and potentially land in your lap! Will you be ready to pull the trigger if that happens?
The other side of that is, if that reach takes away a player you were hoping to grab late. If you built your strategy around getting a certain player later in the draft then you need to be ready to pivot if someone else is willing to over pay for them. Knowing the players you want and the players you want to avoid helps.
3. No Matter What!
In the movie “Draft Day” with Kevin Costner he writes on a small piece of paper, “Vontae Mack, no matter what.” If you are dead set on a guy, take him. It is definitely acceptable to make a small reach for the player you feel is a sure fire stud or potential breakout star.
The same goes on the opposite end of the spectrum. If a player with a big name, who you feel will bust this season, happens to be available and is the “right pick” in your current spot, I’d highly advise you to stay away! Nothing is worse than rostering a player that you don’t like and don’t believe in.
4. Upside vs Floor
Some seasoned players and experts fall on the side of drafting for upside, while others take a safer approach and draft for higher floors. Usually, the higher the risk, the higher the reward. While this may be true, if you go mostly on upside, your team may fall completely flat and bottom out.
If you are too safe, your team may make the playoffs but lack the huge weeks to win your league or make a run to the championship. It is a delicate balance. Late round upside picks allow you to minimise your investment and potentially hit the jackpot. Taking an early round player surrounded by question marks is a risk. Always be aware of the potential pit falls and safeguard yourself where needed.
5. Stick to YOUR Plan
We can argue about whether Miles Sanders should be a first round pick or if handcuffing your first round running back is the right approach. My advice is that you stick to your guns! Don’t flip flop on a player you were out on months ago because of what the latest podcast or expert say. How many experts are wrong? Draft day will be one of the best days of this goofy pandemic year, do yourself a favor, do your homework and go with your gut!
Fantasy Football Analyst
NORMAN BÚN WAS RAISED IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA AND NOW RESIDES IN A SUBURB OF CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA WITH HIS BEAUTIFUL WIFE AND TWO CHILDREN. HE IS A SCHOOL TEACHER AND WRITER WHO IS PASSIONATE ABOUT HIS FAITH, GOLF, MMA AND FANTASY FOOTBALL.