Whether you are a rookie, or someone who has played fantasy football casually in the past and are ready to ramp up your game for 2012, this article will provide you with tips and tricks to draft a team that will compete for the championship
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Also remember, these tips are for a standard 12-team H2H league with standard scoring. If your league is PPR, All TD’s 6 points, or some other format, then the picks would be vastly different.
Before your draft starts, you are going to want to sit down and rank your players. Plenty of sites, including ours, offer free NFL draft kits to help make this task even easier. Be sure to highlight the players you personally prefer, or think will have breakout seasons. It is ok to disagree with the experts picks, just make sure you have done your research and are comfortable with the ranks that you have selected.
If you play in a standard fantasy football format, you can expect the draft to go 15 rounds. With 10 teams, that will total 150 picks, so you will want to rank at least the top 200.
Spend most of your pre-draft prep on RB/WR/QB/TE. Those are the four positions that win fantasy football leagues. If you ask previous champions, you will never hear them say, “Wow I won last year because of Stephen Gostkowski (Patriots kicker).” More often than not, they end up striking gold in the skill positions, in 2011 being guys like Victor Cruz, Jimmy Graham, and Fred Jackson.
Discuss your pre-draft thoughts with your peers, whether that be friends that aren’t in your league, or on message boards such as we provide here at fantasyteamadvice.com. This is a great way to see if you are truly crazy for thinking Tavaris Jackson is going to have a breakout season, or if you are really on to something.
It is absolutely essential you do your homework before draft day, and concentrate on late round sleeper picks. Know who the backup RB’s are that could have an impact this year, and which WR could be the next Victor Cruz in 2012. If you have ranked your top players and gotten feedback on those ranks, you are now ready to proceed to draft day.
Draft Day 2012
The first round pick will almost always be a stud RB or QB. This should be the cornerstone of your team, and a guy that you will be counting on throughout the season. Picks like Arian Foster, Ray Rice, Ryan Mathews, DeMarco Murray, Aaron Rodgers, and Cam Newton will be going off the board here. Lets take a look at why these are the guys to target. Our projections in the NFL draft kit are based on standard fantasy scoring formats, and if you look at projected points the top RB, Arian Foster, is projected to accumulate 350.7 fantasy pts in 2012, while the top QB Aaron Rodgers is projected at 433.94. The top WR, Calvin Johnson, is projected at 260.1 fantasy pts. You will win week in and week out based on points, so why would you want to sacrifice over 100 fantasy points in the first round of your draft? Yes, Calvin Johnson is a beast, and should lead all WR, but that doesn’t mean you pass on Aaron Rodgers (giving up 173.84 fantasy points) just to land the #1 WR with the third pick. Fantasy football is all about points, not landing the best kicker in the game. If you focus on the points you will not go wrong.
Ok so you landed your stud RB or QB in the first round. Time to start filling out the rest of your squad. If you went QB in the first round, you should be looking at RB’s for the next few rounds. If you took a RB in the first, you will want to pick up a solid starting QB in either round 2 or 3. Your first WR should be picked up either late in round 3, or in round 4. 2 solid running backs and an elite starting QB are the backbone of every team.
Time to start thinking about TE’s. Chances are someone reached way to high for Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham and took them in the second or third round, which should be fine by you. While they are wasting their pick on a guy we have projected to score 220.5 and 207.5 respectively you were adding more solid fantasy points in the form of RB’s/QB’s and WR’s. Based on projections, you should start looking at TE’s in the 6th round or so. Some solid options that could have breakout seasons include Aaron Hernandez of the Patriots and Fred Davis of the Redskins. When not picking a TE you should be filling in the rest of your starting skill positions. The standard fantasy roster includes 2 RB’s, 3 WR’s, 1 QB, 1 TE, and a flex (typically RB). After the eighth round your starters should be set.
For Page 2 (Rounds 9-15) of this article click here