Saturday, August 15, 2009

Fantasy Football Draft Preparations

Its almost football season and with that comes fantasy football. Everyone has rankings and draft strategies to try win you your league.

What I am going to try and help with is draft preparation.

The most important part of draft preparation is gathering information. I tend to use a sponge technique, I read and listen to every possible source of information on fantasy football and make mental notes on how the fantasy community feels a given player is going to do. I read websites, blogs, listen to pod casts to try and get a varied view on the upcoming fantasy season. It's important to have multiple sources otherwise you will live and die by the advice of a single website.

I love the Yahoo fantasy sports guys. Evans, Funston, they all crack me up. When I first started playing they were the only resource I drew upon for fantasy advice. I had a few good seasons and a few pathetic seasons. If those guys had good predictions My team did will. If those guys were way off, my team sucked.

Since then I have expanded my roster to include Matthew Barry - The talented Mr. Roto. Writer of the Hollywood classic Crocodile Dundee II Crocodile Dundee in LA. Mr. Berry also provided the inspiration for Lincoln Freed the Slaves. I lifted the name from one of his articles about the most random text messages ever sent and received. He is also the co-host of a great daily fantasy focus podcast with Nate Ravitz. Always entertaining with good football insight I suggest you give these guys a listen.

Another podcast I have taken to listing to is The fantasy football guys. I like these guys because they don't pretend to have inside information but they have good discussion that get you thinking about players and draft situations that I find useful. These guys tend to ramble on (hour and a half pod casts, yeesh!), but they always have something to make you think.

During this time I am also reading peoples rankings and predictions to combine them all in my head to form some opinions of these players myself. I think through what has changed for them since last season and whether that should have a positive or a negative effect.

An example: Last season Jay Cutler was THE man. It was a no brainer he was going to be my keeper this year. Then he gets traded to Chicago. makes you re-evaluate what his numbers might be. Its probably a negative for his personal stats. HOWEVER, I think that overall this improves the Bears and Matt Forte gets a bump in my rankings.

That's a pretty simple one but the point is not to feed you information (it could be wrong!) it is to get you thinking about who YOU think is going to have a good season.

The next step for me has been Mock Drafts. I don't worry to much about the outcomes, but I like having the experience. I typically go through several of these trying out different draft strategies. I have already done one starting with drafting a running back, one with WR as my first pick, and one as QB at my first pick. It lets you see how the rest of the draft and your team changes depending on what you select first. These drafts also give you a decent idea of where different players may come off the board.

As far as the actual draft goes I tend to show up with more information than needed.

I have an overall ranking list. I usually steal this from espn. I usually don't alter this list at all as I use it more as a guideline than a strict map.

I then have page for QB, WR, RB, and K/TE/D share a sheet. These I do a bit more work on as far as arranging them according to my wants.

I also have a page that has some important stats from last year. Ours is a PPR league so I have a list of the top 25 in catches, along with their targets for last season. Another stat I keep is quarterback attempts and completions (We get points for a completion, crazy league, I know, but it makes it impossible to find a pre-made list to just print off and take to the draft)

I always feel like I am the most prepared person at the draft and even if I am not it gives me confidence. We all know confidence is key when it comes to shit talking, and we all know that when it comes down to it, Shit talking is the point of Fantasy football.


Fish said...

you know what I don't like about fantasy football? Your season is generally determined by injuries. It's such a small sample size with so many variables, its hard to predict.

For fantasy sports, I much prefer baseball. Larger sample size = more statistical reliability.

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