There are certain mistakes that fantasy owners make every year which are avoidable. By avoiding these commonly made mistakes you will have a edge against your fellow league members. So keep these tips in mind when drafting:
1. DON’T … draft a kicker or defense before the last two rounds
There is no reason to draft a kicker or a defense before the last two rounds. These positions will not win you your fantasy league. That is for your backs and receivers. The kicker and defense merely round out the roster.
Another thing going against kickers and defenses is the unpredictability from year to year. The last time a kicker led the league in scoring in back-to-back years was in 1979-80 when John Smith did it.
Don’t bother taking Stephen Gostkowski in Round 10 this year. Just take a kicker on a decent offense in the last round and you’ll be more than fine.
As for defenses, don’t fall in love with last year’s top defense. The consensus top D for last year was
It was only two years ago when the Chicago defense was going in the fifth round of fantasy drafts, and rewarded owners with a good seasons, but nowhere near worth the fifth-round investment they made.
So don’t get caught up with the trendy defense and take a mediocre one in the second-to-last round. You can also go with a defense by committee where you pick up a new defense each week depending on matchup.
2. DON’T … get caught up in a position run
Position runs happen in every draft, and getting caught up in one could be trouble. The most obvious position run is tight end, where after Tony Gonzalez, Jason Witten and Antonio Gates are off the board the rest of tight ends fly off the board in one round.
You don’t want to give in succumb to the position run.
You want to be the one to start the position run, and not be the one who selects Zach Miller in Round 7 because all the tight ends were going off the board.
If you find yourself in a position run that you didn’t start, take another position and wait a few rounds before selecting that position.
You will have much better value, and for tight ends you can wait longer because many owners don’t take a backup tight end.
3. DON’T … take your sleepers too early
It’s everyone’s favorite thing to talk about … sleepers. Everyone has their own list of their favorite sleepers that they can’t wait to select on draft day.
Some people become a little too anxious about their sleepers, and will not let them get away so they take them three or four rounds too early … and that’s where the problem starts.
They’re called sleepers for a reason.
You take them in the 14th and 15th rounds, not the ninth round. They are no longer sleepers when you take them that early. Instead of being a sleeper pick it now becomes a bad pick.
Sleepers are no sure bet to work out, so let someone else reach on him while you wait. If he doesn’t pan out no worries because it was a late-round pick.
4. DON’T … take strength of schedule into consideration when drafting
Every year you always see the articles online that break down the schedule for the upcoming season and tell you who has the easiest schedule especially in playoff weeks.
Don’t buy into this.
The NFL has a salary cap and that means one thing: parity.
Parity is present more in the NFL than any other sport, and any team can rebound in just one season.
All you have to do is look at the Dolphins last year who went from one win to 11.
So just because a player faces Detroit and St. Louis in the postseason doesn’t mean they’re a great fantasy player and you should rate them higher in your draft.
5. DON’T … drink and draft
An offline draft can be a great experience. All of your buddies get together in one place and maybe you haven’t seen each other in awhile. There will be plenty of food there and also plenty of beer.
The temptation to drink will certainly be there.
But you have to resist the urge. It might only take a few beers for you to lose your edge and ruin your season.
It will be a long four-month season knowing you blew your season on draft day because you had a few too many to drink.
So take it easy on draft day and remember you’re there to draft.