Top 10 Fantasy Football Tips to Destroy Your Leagues

With the NFL season just around the corner, it’s time to help you prepare for your fantasy football leagues. Whether it’s for money, bragging rights in the office, or finally wanting to beat your uncle Mike who wins your league every year. These 10 tips will help you at every stage of the game you are in.

1- Familiarize yourself with the rules and settings of your league

The best thing about Fantasy Football is that there are countless rules and adjustments to make the league more interesting and fun. There are dynasty leagues, goalie leagues, and redraft leagues. You can have standard rules for points or get additional points per reception. There are two quarterback leagues, three wide receiver leagues, and even unbanked leagues. You can even design your team auction style. I could go into all these different types of leagues and ratings but the article would never end. The point is that each of these different ways of playing fantasy football requires different strategies to approach them. For example, if you play in a Superflex or a two-quarterback league, the quarterbacks go early, and often waiting too long can mess up your draft. If you’re playing in a dynasty league, drafting Derrick Henry and Tom Brady at their normal average draft position might not be a good idea.

2- Mock Draft, Mock Draft, Mock Draft

Practice makes perfect, right? This can also be applied to Fantasy Football with the Mock Draft feature on any platform. A mock draft lets you literally step into a fake fantasy football draft and practice drawing as if it were your actual draft day. Mock Drafting helps you try out different strategies or draft slots to get ready to create the perfect fantasy football team. It also helps you learn to be flexible on your actual draft day if your draft strategy goes wrong.

3- Wait for a quarterback

Quarterbacks are generally the most popular players on an NFL team and are household names. I bet your Aunt Susan knows who Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady are, but if you ask her about Christian McCaffrey or Cooper Kupp, I’d bet she has no idea. In a quarterback league, quarterbacks don’t mean much. In fact, the third-best quarterback and the 11th-best quarterback in points per game were separated by only two points. Additionally, seven of last season’s top 10 quarterbacks went into round six or later, and some of them into round nine or ten. Obviously you can have a great team and draft Josh Allen in round three. But picking an early quarterback can jeopardize the depth of your team at the end of your draft and haunt you throughout the season.

4- Don’t wait for a running back

One position to design early on is the running back. Although running backs don’t occupy such an important position from a real-world perspective, they are vital in fantasy football. There really aren’t many running backs you can rely on as a workhorse to rack up points week after week without having to rely on touchdowns to get you going. Because of this, it’s extremely important to work on a strategy that consists of securing at least one running back in the first two rounds and two running backs in the first three or four rounds. Although in the PPR (Points Per Reception) leagues the best wide receivers and running backs generally score the same, the value for wide receivers is much higher later in the draft. For example, the average draft position for the top three wide receiver picks last season was round six, while it was round two for the top three running backs.

5- Be a shark on the abandonment wire

Your fantasy football experience doesn’t end with the draft. It’s just the beginning. Injuries happen all the time in fantasy football. If you or your competition have a star player who misses even one game, getting those top players off the waiver wire is paramount. Additionally, many players have fantastic seasons that don’t get drafted. These are guys you never expected to dominate, like Cordarrelle Patterson in 2021 or James Robinson in 2020. Slacking off on the wire can ruin your championship chances.

6- Don’t get attached to the players you draft

The art of trading is something I could write a whole book about. If I have one tip for you about trading, it’s that you can love your players and their accomplishments, but don’t get too attached to those players. This means buying Star Players at their lowest value when they are not playing at their normal level of play. This also means selling players at the highest value. If you have a player on your bench who starts the season with consecutive 20-point games, consider swapping them when you upgrade the actual player. For example, let’s say Gabriel Davis gets these consecutive 20-point games. You might be hoping it continues, which probably won’t happen at this level, or you can trade him for a guy like Terry McLaurin who started the season very badly. The point is that these players will generally regress positively and return to their means of production and expectations. So buying low and selling high can help get great value for a player at their lowest price with the discount of selling a player at their highest value of the season.

7- Your bank is also important

Oh come on, your starters aren’t the only aspect of your team. Your bank is also important. The first thing to address in this section is not worrying about your defense and kicker until the final two rounds of the fantasy draft. I don’t care that they’re part of your starting lineup. It will save you from being taunted by your friends and peers, while also being of great value in the mid to late round of the draft.

By my standards, an amazing bank is one that offers little security and all the benefits in the world. Owning guys who you know have a chance to explode into major fantasy football relevance but might be a bit inconsistent is more important than owning a man who you know is just a decent one player and would never have the chance to start. This is where I’d place rookies to break out, even if you have to hold onto them late in the season. Last year Elijah Moore was my late bank hideout that I never gave up. Between weeks one and six, Moore averaged just 3.7 points in PPR. Between weeks seven and twelve, however, he rebounded and exploded to an average of 17.2 points in the PPR. While most people quit between those weeks, I persevered and was able to pick up Elijah Moore in leagues where he was dropped.

8- Don’t worry too much about the bye weeks

But think of her anyway. Not drafting a player just because he has the same bye week as another guy on your team makes no sense. First, you’re missing out on valuable players, and the excuse of having multiple players with the same bye week doesn’t make up for the value you lose. If you like a player, you take him. Stupid excuses like this won’t work. The second reason not to worry about the bye weeks is that by the time the bye weeks start, your team will probably already look very different. Bye weeks begin in week six, so chances are with injuries, no wire shots and trades, your team won’t be the same as the one you originally designed.

9- Keep your team young to a point

Each position has its own set of years before the player begins to decline. I’m always the type of guy who’d rather drop out a year earlier than too late. Because of this, staying away from older players, even if they show no signs of relegation, can be more fruitful than dealing with a player caught in a downward spiral that could have been avoided. This is primarily true for the players who go into the earlier rounds as they form the core of your team. Owning older players in the mid to late rounds is perfectly fine. That means guys like Travis Kelce and Derrick Henry won’t be on any of my teams because of their average draft position and age. I understand Kelce and Henry dominated. However, Kelce will soon be 33 years old. How many players have dominated their position at that age? I just can’t take the risk of continued dominance. Henry, on the other hand, is 28 years old, which is older for a running back. Combining his age with his strong commitment and his injury last season means an injury this season and I don’t want any part of it.

10- Have fun

They should be active in your fantasy football leagues. But it’s no fun stressing out about the games in progress and getting angry at players who are underperforming. Fantasy football should be treated like any other hobby and it’s all about enjoying yourself while playing. Friendly banter is encouraged, but I’ve seen friendships end over fantasy football leagues. Don’t let that happen to you. If you don’t enjoy it, then this is not a hobby for you.

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