Fantasy Football: Top 10 Tips & Tricks in 2018

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On June 26th, The Fantasy Footballers recorded the show LIVE in Minneapolis bringing 10 Tips and Tricks for 2018 fantasy football drafts. I’ve already taken some of these tips on board in my early 2018 drafts, so I know these will help you out. Here’s a recap:

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#10 – Coupon-Clip Players (Mike)

Coupon-Clip players are the guys playing on teams who are surrounded by players being highly drafted. This is especially useful for QBs with multiple receiving options drafted in the early and middle rounds. Think of Tyrod Taylor (Josh Gordon and Jarvis Landry), Matthew Stafford (Marvin Jones and Golden Tate), Eli Manning (Odell Beckham Jr., Evan Engram, and Sterling Shepard), and Kirk Cousins (Adam Thielen, Stefon Diggs, and Kyle Rudolph). You can also get cheap pieces of players in good offenses like Will Fuller

#9 – Love Hurts (Andy)

Love hurts when you build a roster that’s too heavy at the top without any depth. You want to avoid doing too many trades where you package two or three players to get another ‘love.’ Too many trades like that results in a team that has an amazing starting roster, but nothing on the bench. Injuries happen and certain players simply don’t work out so make sure you have players waiting in the wing. You also need to accept reality when player doesn’t pan out (Ameer Abdullah), you can move on.

#8 – You Don’t Win Your Championships at the Draft(Except for Bestball drafts) (Jason)

The draft is one of the best parts of the entire season, but fantasy enthusiasts often stop paying attention 2-3 weeks into the season. You need to be active on the waiver wire, make trades, and make optimal starting roster decisions. A few of the top players on championship teams were Josh Gordon, Devin Funchess, Alex Smith, and Alex Collins. These were players drafted very late or not drafted at all. Stay active and look for opportunities to supplement the team you drafted.

#7 – House of Horrors (Mike)

There are teams and situations that fantasy players go out of their way to avoid, but these are the situations that produce diamonds through the compression of coal(via “geography”). Look for running back by committees(RBBCs) like Green Bay from last year with multiple RBs that produced multiple top-10 weeks. Same thing with WRs that appeared buried like Kenny Stills and Jamison Crowder. You might even be able to capitalize on the injury risk of high-upside players like Rule 86 (Jordan Reed for the uninitiated).

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#6 – Fear Hurts (Andy)

Scared players make terrible fantasy decisions. Scared players won’t draft players with the same bye weeks and always drafts handcuffs (HAND-CUFFs are another situation altogether). Maybe the worst things scared players can do is draft to fill their roster. It’s OK if you start getting bench players before you get a QB or a TE. Don’t play scared. 

#5 – Saddle-A-Stud (Jason)

I know Saddle-A-Stud sounds weird (it’s Jason-you just have to roll with it sometimes) but Jason’s point is that studs are nearly always RBs. Only Antonio Brown breaks the mold with regular appearances as a top score-getter. Week in and week out point leaders are coming from the RBs drafted in the top portion of the draft. Get yourself a stud RB.

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#4 – Hold on to Your Butts (Mike)

Blake Bortles was the #2 overall QB from weeks 12-16 averaging almost 22 points/game over that period. Joe Flacco averaged over 5 more fantasy points than Tom Brady and Matt Ryan from weeks 13-17. Ugly names to be sure, but sub-par QBs can produce awesome fantasy points if/when the matchups are juicy.

Early QBs are not necessarily safe. Only 4 QBs take in the top-12 QBs drafted met or exceeded their draft position. The average draft position return on QBs taken in the top 4 QBs was -11.5. The average return of QBs 9-17 was +5. No less than 43 names put up a top-12 QB week including David Fales?! All of this to say you can wait on QBs and either find a gem or stream them.  

#3 – Names Hurt (Andy)

Wrapping up the Hurt Series. Big name players can be extremely costly because they carry with them a history that inspires hope. Hope is a terrible strategy. It’s tough to pass up on a big name when you see them sitting in the mid-rounds, but even big names in the first few rounds can crush you. Over the past couple of years we’ve seen names like C.J. Anderson, 2016 Adrian Peterson, Eddie Lacy, and Jordy Nelson. Watch out for aforementioned Jordy Nelson this year along with Tom Brady and Drew Brees. The name can hurt.

Tim Bradbury/Getty Images Sport

#2 – Know the End from the Beginning (Jason)

It sounds weird, but I promise it makes a lot of sense. It’s tempting to focus in on the first few rounds of ADPs but take a look at who is available towards the end of the draft. Better yet, print off the ADP (especially if you use the Ultimate Draft Kit) list and circle the players you like in each of the last few rounds. If you’re circling a lot of WRs, you know you don’t have to load up on WRs in the middle rounds.

#1 – Identify the Problem and Fix it (Jason)

Right now is the best time to fix the stupid rules in your leagues. The Footballers get tired from reading all the horror stories of how ridiculous rules made leagues less fun. Examples:

  • The waiver system-Get FAAB in(with zero-dollar bidding turned on)
  • Get Week 17 Championships out
  • Get rid of transaction restrictions
  • Use decimal scoring

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