Building a championship fantasy football team begins well before the kickoff on Opening Day. Winning owners know that they must be well prepared to get the most out of the draft so they start out in a better position than any of the other owners in the league.
It’s All About Points – Many of the worst mistakes owners make occur when they forget the bottom line: you win by scoring more fantasy points than your opponents. Don’t fall into the trap of taking a player because he’s famous, because you like him, or because you are impatient. Concentrate on drafting players who score more than anyone else, and balance it with your need to fill positions before the top scorers run out.
For example, suppose you still need a starting tight end and wide receiver. The best TE left scored 4 points better last season than the next best one left. The next best WR scored 8 better than anyone else remaining. Most of the time, you should grab the player who will give you more points than other owners are going to be able to get at that position. However, you do need to make sure there are enough players of similar scoring power left at your other vacant positions to do this. You don’t want to select a player who scores a little bit more than the others remaining at his position and then see the position you neglected run out of viable starters, causing you to lose way more than you gained with the other pick.
Your TEAM needs to outscore other teams-it doesn’t matter who on your team does it as long as the total score does the trick.
I’m Thinkin’ RBs – If his name isn’t Peyton Manning, don’t even think of taking anyone besides a running back until you have your starting RBs. Most starting running backs outscore most other players at other positions. You will maximize your scoring by taking two star running backs and more if possible. There is usually only one main ball carrier per team, so RBs are always valuable and in short supply.
Handcuffs – This applies mainly to RBs. A backup is often just one injury away from a star-especially if he is on a team with a productive offense. Protect yourself in the event of injuries and “handcuff” these backups to the stars you picked. Maybe even grab a backup or two of other fantasy teams’ players-it can pay off big later in the season when a guy goes down and you find yourself with an extra star and your opponent is now shorthanded.
Stay Awake for Sleepers – “Sleepers” are surprise players who outperform most people’s expectations. Try to fill out your bench with potential starters you can get for next to nothing. This could include young players who should improve, players changing teams that make a better fit, or sometimes just players who give you a gut feeling they will explode into stardom.
Marques Colston, Tony Romo, and Mike Furrey were just a few unexpected fantasy stars who made winners out of team owners who took a chance on them. STAY TUNED all season for sleeper recommendations that could take you to the top of your league!