If this is your first season, now is the time to start preparing for your fantasy football draft. This is about the time most leagues starting sending invites and setting up a draft date. Did you know football season is only 24 days away? You’ll be enjoying a new world of fantasy football before you know it! If you still feel you are not ready to start your preparation visit one of my earlier articles, Fantasy Football Basics. If you have the basics down now is the time to get your ducks in a row. Below you will find my step by step beginner fantasy football draft preparation guide. With my advice you can take your league pros by surprise, or at least contend with them! As a Rookie following my own guide I was able to finish the season in the top half of my league (eliminated in the second round of the playoffs) and even win a few games against some of the Fantasy Football Experts featured on this website.
1. The first step as a beginner is to understand your league rules and regulations. Talk to your league commissioner to find out what type of Fantasy Football league you will be participating in. Once you know what you are getting into its time to ramp up the research.
2. If you are using Trade Fantasy Football you already know the value of doing a little homework. Start by finding a good source for fantasy related statistics and overall NFL news. Chances are if you are hosting your league online the website you are using will be a good start. Our experts are also currently producing their preseason daily team by team analysis. In addition to this onslaught of knowledge by our staff I also recommend the websites I used last season. Research is something that is vital in the preseason as well as the rest of the season. If you do not want to pay attention and keep up with football, you will not be successful with your fantasy team.
3. After you understand the value of research and get an idea of how you intend to tackle Fantasy Football it’s time to find a draft strategy. Chances are you are in a standard scoring league and will want to consider using value based strategy. This means you will look for players in each position based off how they rank against players of the same position. Another strategy, the one I went with on my first fantasy season, is to focus on overall rankings. I drafted top players regardless of their position. Optimally it may be best to utilize a hybrid of both and that is the way I will draft in the 2012 season.
4. Prior to draft day you will want to rank your prospects. Luckily this will be easy utilizing our preseason fantasy football player rankings. You may even want to refer to this list on draft day.
5. Something that really helped me last football season was creating a cheat sheet. Utilizing the steps above I created a one page reference guide that included who I was gunning for. Even though at the time I considered myself under-prepared against seasoned fantasy fanatics my homework helped my team become a contender and made my first season very enjoyable.
6. The last tip in my beginner fantasy football draft preparation guide is to leave your allegiance at the door. Do not go in and draft your favorite players or individuals that are on your favorite team just off the sake of drafting them. Sure it’ll be easier to keep up with the stats and breaking news, but chances are your team will not be successful. Last season I did break my own rule by drafting my favorite player, Tom Brady in the first round but that is as far as I took it. If you followed last season, you’ll know I didn’t make a bad move picking him up. If you favorite player is one of the top ranked players, then maybe you should and could make an exception. Overall however, you will want to concentrate on business. I drafted the same way I pick stocks, pertinent research and no emotion. After all, the object is to win!
Following these beginner fantasy draft preparation tips will almost guarantee you not getting laughed out of the league on your rookie year. Chances are your draft day is just around the corner. So hit the research hard now and get your fantasy draft cheat sheet ready. Next week I will provide fantasy football draft day advice. Be sure to keep up with my weekly blog for this future article and beginner fantasy football tips and tricks throughout the season.
Web developer, marketer, and entrepreneur by trade - when approached with the project I was excited to be on board. The only problem, I don't know all that much about fantasy football. In my younger days I played Defensive Line in Europe but a background smashing heads doesn't really help with racking up fantasy football points. Last year was the first time I have even attempted to play FF. Learning the basics and doing research prior to the draft made me realize Trade Fantasy Football fills a void. My point of view as "The Rookie" may help other beginners. I imagine as time progresses my role as an "expert" will evolve...but until then feel free to learn along with me.