How The Lockout Affects Us, The Fantasy Football Faithful
I’m sure by now, you are tired of hearing stories about charity golf matches, player led practices and free agent speculations. What can the experienced fantasy owner do instead of wasting time reading these garbage articles?
This lockout changes several things for the upcoming season. First, we are assuming there will be a normal 16 game season. I know that is a big assumption, but at this point, that is how we have to begin our preparation. Here are some things you have to keep in mind to prepare.
Prepare Early – I know it may seem like a waste of time right now, but it beats watching Ochocinco falling off of a bull for the 10th time. Compile an initial cheatsheet based on current rosters. This is obviously going to change, so use some form of spreadsheet program allowing you to manipulate your players without starting over each time.
Be Flexible – The longer the lockout lasts, the more flexible you will have to be as crunch time approaches. Once the lockout ends and players start moving to other teams, you’ll have to adjust your cheatsheets on a regular basis. Keep in mind how the move affects both teams involved with the player movement.
Source Information – Online information from reputable sites, like this one, is invaluable. They update their player projections on a daily/weekly basis and that will be the information you’ll rely on to update your personal cheatsheets. If you plan on walking into your draft with a magazine that you picked up on the way to the draft, do me a favor, stop reading this article and send me a check for your league entry fee. I will in turn send you a check for 25% of your investment. Trust me, this is probably more than you can expect to make in your league. It’s a win-win.
Beware of Rookies – The less time rookies have to learn playbooks, the more of a wildcard they become. I’m not saying that some rookies won’t eventually be productive fantasy players. I’m just saying don’t overspend on them. Even with a full training camp this past season, rookies that had fairly high ADPs, didn’t live up to the hype. Players like Mathews, Spiller, Best and Bryant had every opportunity to prepare and only Best was barely able to crack the top 25 for his position. Sam Bradford wound up eventually being a low end #2 QB. McCoy and Tebow showed some promise at the end of the season, but were mostly waiver wire pickups. Other promising rookies such as Mike Williams and LeGarrette Blount were also available on most waiver wires.
Prepare for Injuries – If training camps are shortened, there is a possibility that injuries may become more likely. We are all aware of incidences where veterans and rookies have waited to sign until just prior to the beginning of the regular season, only to get injured shortly after reporting. Multiply this by every player on every roster and be ready to react when an injury occurs. Think of how the injury to Ben Tate, just prior to the beginning of last season, potentially changed the season for Arian Foster.
Pray to the Fantasy gods – Perform whatever rituals you feel will help get us back to enjoying our favorite past time. If we don’t have football on Sunday’s this fall, I’m sure that our significant others will make plans for that time we have fought so hard to call sacred.