With drafts coming up in the following weeks its never too early to think about what your strategy is going to be come draft day. As I have talked about previously it’s important to try and grab as many “Tier 1” players as possible for you team. The way to go about getting them changes depending on your drafting format(auction or snake) and where you are drafting.
I’ll start by talking about snake drafts, and to kick off the snake drafts drafters slotted in the top half( 1-4, 1-5 or 1-6 for 8, 10 and 12 team leagues respectively) of drafts.
1. Take your Running Back
If you are slotted in the upper half of your draft you can simply do what fantasy football players have been doing and been advised to do for years and years, take a running back. It’s a tired and true formula that when executed properly can make a world of difference. Think about the people in your leagues who drafted LeSean McCoy and Jamaal Charles in your league compared to the people who drafted Ray Rice or Trent Richardson. The first round is about picking a safe cornerstone for your team and a top flight running back is the best way to go about and do that.
2. Draft a QB
Going into last year I had heard all of the talk about waiting for a QB because the position is so deep and you don’t need to rush the selection because you can still find value later in the draft. I didn’t listen to that at all and drafted Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers in the second rounds of my most important leagues(leagues with people I know), one worked out one didn’t(not your fault Aaron Rodgers). This year I wouldn’t consider drafting Drew Brees with a top 10 pick, but I would give thought to either Peyton Manning or Aaron Rodgers around the middle of the first round. The important thing to remember about a first round pick is that you are trying to pick an elite safe player, and no one is safer than Peyton Manning and a healthy Aaron Rodgers. You know you can expect a couple week winning totals from them throughout the season and that they are very unlikely to give you a stinker during the year. If you aren’t sold on a player like Marshawn Lynch or Eddy Lacy around the middle of the first round grab one of these QB’s.
If you are drafting auction then you aren’t playing the board you have to be the one to make the call on when and how much to pay for your players. This means there are less strategies when it comes to drafting and it means knowing what players you are targeting and knowing how much you value them is all that more important. I have been preaching about grabbing a tier 1 receiver all summer, do it. If you can grab a top 6 running back go ahead and do that too. You can find good QB’s for lower price tags, guys like Tony Romo, Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Jay Cutler and Andy Dalton. If you are going to wait for QB until players like that it would be wise to draft at least two of them so you can play the match-ups at QB. It will be a good idea to try and take some fliers around the end of the draft on high risk high reward players. If you can get a guy like preseason hype favorite(for the second year in a row) Christine Michael for a a couple bucks, go for it.