Fantasy Football 101
For those of you who don’t know too much about fantasy football here’s an analogy that might help you understand. If you are a business owner with your own company, you have a lot in common with a fantasy football team owner. As an owner, you get to decide who to hire, who to fire, who’s going to be a player on your team and who’s going to coach your team.
This same structure applies for fantasy football. Once you have picked your fantasy team, you are officially a team owner. When you draft your team, you are acting as the general manager. When you decide who starts and sits from week to week, you become the head coach. The only role you do not play is being an actual player because we leave that to the pros (and without true NFL players everyone knows, where would the fun be?)
Hot Tips For A Strong Fantasy Team
Now that you are getting ready for your NFL fantasy draft here are a couple of tips to make sure you get out of the box fast and build a strong team.
Tip number one:
Do not draft a quarterback in the first round. In fact, I wouldn’t recommend drafting a quarterback until the third round at the earliest.
Tip number two:
Get your running backs early! You’ll need at least two and possibly three starting running backs to have a successful team (especially with the bye weeks and injuries that will undoubtedly pile up during the season.)
Tip number three:
Do your homework! Scan some fantasy draft websites and magazines and do your due diligence so you know who the top players were from last year and who the top rookies are going to be this year.
Careful With The Rookies
When drafting your team, you also want to be very cautious of any rookies, even if they’re first round draft NFL picks. Very few NFL rookies produce as fantasy leaders during their first season. Quarterbacks especially usually do not break out and have a great season (unless of course you’re talking about Patrick Mahomes or last year‘s rookie sensation quarterback Justin Herbert.)
It’s entirely possible that Trevor Lawrence will have a big fantasy year in Jacksonville as he was the number over one overall draft pick, but unlikely that any other quarterback drafted in the first round will be worth putting on your team even if it’s on your bench.
What is a bye week? This is the week that a player has no game.
You will want to make sure you pay attention to each player’s bye week. Make sure that your starters are mostly free from sharing the same bye week or you’re going to be scrambling to find back ups on the waiver wire.
What is a waiver wire? This is a system that allows a team to submit a claim for a player that has been let go from another team. Once a waiver is submitted, the player is on a freeze, giving everyone else a chance to make claim for the player. If more than one team requests a player, the the team with the best waiver position receives the player.
The waiver is essentially a queue. Whoever is at the top of this list gets the player, and then moves to the bottom of the queue, while everyone else moves up a spot.
**If you want to see a full glossary of fantasy football terminology so you can keep up in conversation with your fellow players, check this out.
A Few Final Tips:
Make sure that your back ups don’t have the same bye week as your starters. For example, a running back from the Cincinnati Bengals and a running back from the Pittsburgh Steelers who both have a week 8 bye will leave you with only two running backs that week.
During the season, you want to pay attention to studs and duds. You’ll want to sit them or start them and pay attention to fantasy tips that will be all over the Internet during the season.
Here are my pre-fantasy draft top 10 studs and duds predictions:
Quarterback studs – #1 Patrick Mahomes #2 Aaron Rodgers #3 Josh Allen #4 Russell Wilson #5 Lamar Jackson #6 Dak Prescott #7 Justin Herbert #8 Tom Brady (yes, I know he’s almost 50 but you go ahead and bet against him) #9 Joe burrows #10 Ryan Tannehill
Quarterback duds– now this list is subjective but trust me- I know QBs and these guys are going to disappoint: Carson Wentz, Daniel Jones, Jameis Winston, Kirk cousins, Baker Mayfield , Sam Darnold, Jalen Hurts, Cam Newton, Derek Carr, Andy Dalton
Sleeper pics – Tua Tungovailoa, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Matt Ryan, Jimmy Garoppolo, Deshaun Watson (Can’t count on him to be a starter with what’s happening in his personal life, otherwise he’d be a stud), Kyler Murray, Ben Roethlisberger, Trevor Lawrence (could be great backup and get Rookie of the Year). These guys would be a good QB2s in any 12 team league.
So those are my NFL fantasy quarterback dos and don’ts for the 2021- 22 NFL season. Stay tune for the following weeks articles on running backs, wide receivers and finally tight ends, kickers and defense.
I’ll be writing a weekly article giving you the studs and duds and all the sleeper picks to help you win your league. In some cases, I’ll be sharing stories directly from the sidelines of NFL games in Miami, Tampa and Jacksonville Florida -and that’s the perspective and insider info you’ll want if you want to win this year!