Fantasy Football Pre-Draft Guide

It’s that time of year again. Thank the fucking Lord. It’s been so long since football that I think I tricked my brain into liking baseball. But, that’s all out the door now. It’s finally time to put on your favorite NFL jersey and sit down on your couch and draft your team(s) for the upcoming NFL season. The thought of highlighters, buffalo wings, and cold beer has me rock hard. ONLY 3 MORE SUNDAYS UNTIL NFL SUNDAY. Although, fantasy football is not just fun and games. It’s all about preparation, week in and week out.

Here are what you need to do in order to prepare for your fantasy football draft.

Research. Research. Research.

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Doing research prior to your draft is extremely critical. Things to look for are:

  • free agency and trades made that you might not be aware of
  • rookies
  • expiring contracts (players who have 1 or 2 years left on their contract usually perform at a higher level to get that pay check the following year)
  • injuries
  • depth charts
  • read up on how some guys are doing at camp. I find reading a teams insider blog is a lot more helpful than reading ESPN or Fox Sports.
  • get two or three sleeper picks. Everyone should have one solid sleeper going into the draft

Also read up on your leagues rules. Each league has its only specific set of rules and getting familiar with the rules and scoring can really benefit you during the season.

Do some mock drafts to test the waters.

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I’m not saying you have to be be Mel Kiper or Todd McShay but put a little effort into it. I recommend using whatever platform your real draft is to do your mock drafts. My league uses ESPN so I will strictly use ESPN. Do about 4-5 mocks and in different draft orders and formats. Doing one where your the 1st pick and doing one where you’re the 7th pick makes a hell of a difference in the strategy you’ll need to use. Make sure you pay attention to PPR/Standard or Snake/Auction. Here’s a link to ESPN’s. There’s a million every minute and are extremely easy to get into.

Make a cheat sheet

Look at it as if you are going into school for a test. There’s no mother fucking rules telling you that you can’t have a cheat sheet, so make one, or at least have a pre-made one handy at the draft. No matter if you’re doing an offline or an online draft, PRINT OUT YOUR SHEET. Going from window to window on your laptop/phone/tablet wastes valuable time.

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Here’s an example of a great pre-made sheet. Print an updated one out. Laminate the fucking thing and don’t let anyone else see it.

Pay the commissioner the fees before or at the draft

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I am a commissioner of one of my leagues and this is the worst thing to deal with. Some guys are great with paying before the draft and others don’t pay until the last week of the league. It’s a pain in the ass asking people for money every week. It makes the commissioner look like an asshole for asking but the real asshole is the guy holding out. If you can’t pay up front, then make a deal with the commissioner for a payment plan. I’ve seen this situation destroy friendships and is that really how you want to lose a friend?

Get a nice name.

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Some people like to name their team based of one of their players. Others like to base them off of TV show such as Game of Thrones and others just like generic names such as “Team Blue” or “420 Blaze”

Don’t be THAT GUY at the draft

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If you’re at a live draft and people are drinking, take it easy the first few rounds, get your core players then start shotgunning brews. Those first 4-5 picks are critical and the rest are like throwing darts in the dark. Or if you want to take a dark approach, get all your friends drunk and be the only one sober making logical picks

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All-in-all, just be prepared. Going into a draft unprepared is a waste of money. Unless you’re the luckiest motherfucker around, you will lose the league and your money. GLHF

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