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Fantasy Football

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Fantasy Football Draft Advice

Fantasy Football - By: D. Bachman
Updated June 1st, 2007 - Page updated at 10:00am Sportsbook Review


Before you get in to deep we'd like to give you some advice on how to do a live draft online properly for your fantasy football leagues.

Fantasy Football drafts are soon to be in full swing as the calendar draws closer to NFL Opening Day. Depth charts are studied. A list of sleepers and busts is compiled. Owners spend hours absorbing every piece of knowledge possible with one goal in mind: Build the most feared roster...ever. With that in mind, we offer our top eight rules for constructing the most productive and well-rounded roster.

1. Draft: At least two running backs in Rounds 1-3. The number of true featured backs in the NFL has seen an enormous decrease, so it's imperative to secure your backfield while good options are still available. Should you decide to pass on the position, there's a chance your team will be out of contention by midseason. In a 12-team league, it's possible that as many as 18-22 backs will be taken in the first two rounds. In that scenario, owners could be forced to decide between a second-tier back like Kenin Jones or a stud at a different skill position in the second or third rounds. That's where Rule No. 2 comes into effect.

2. Avoid: quarterbacks in Rounds 1-3...unless it's Payton Manning, or Carson Palmer. Draft position will have a huge role in roster construction. A middle-round spot in serpentine drafts will allow more choices and a better shot at a productive backfield, but owners who draw the Nos. 2 and 23 or 3 and 22 overall selections will face a dilemma. An absence of dependable backs will leave owners to decide between a top quarterback like Palmer, and a borderline No. 2 like Thomas Jones, again. In that instance, it makes sense to pass on the back and select the versatile field general, who could be on the verge of a monstrous season. Peyton Manning and Brady are also solid, but Manning has more value overall. A second back with similar value -- Edgerrin James and Joseph Addai come to mind -- can be acquired in Round 3.

3. Follow: the flow of the draft. It's never a bad idea to keep up with the Joneses in the case of running backs. The imminent push on the position will run its course in the first three rounds, with a few scattered quarterbacks and wide receivers also in the mix. But once the studs and serviceable backs are gone, owners will begin to look at new skill positions. In most cases, that position is wide receiver. A glut of productive options will be available in Rounds 4-6, so owners will be quick to pounce on the high level of talent. A minimum of two upper-level receivers can be secured at this stage, so don't miss the boat or risk a serous lack of depth.

4. Didn't: get Manning or Palmer? Wait on a quarterback. Owners will be amazed at the number of productive quarterbacks still on the board in Rounds 5-8. Signal-callers like Favre, Hasselbeck, Trent Green, Matt Leinart and Marc Bulger -- who always combine to do well and post TD's year after year, they are incredible bargains. This depth allows owners to focus on running backs and wide receivers in the early stages without compromising overall team production.

5. Insure: your top running backs. Injuries and off-field issues can be disastrous to a Fantasy team, so it's vital to insure your most valuable backs with their immediate backups. This will make it easier to deal with the unexpected and unfortunate issues that seem to arise each season. Some of the most obvious choices are coupling Larry Johnson w/ his backup, or Shaun Alexander with Maurice Morris, or Deuce McAllister w/ Reggie Bush.

6. Wide: receivers will be plentiful in Rounds 8-12. Believe it or not, Terry Glenn, Marquis Coltson, and Darrel Jackson were all taken in the late rounds of most drafts last season. The trio went on to find the end zone a lot in 05/06 and led countless owners to a Fantasy title. While it's still advised to secure at least two proven starters in Rounds 4-6, it is in these late stanzas where some of the best bargains in the draft will emerge.


7. Gamble: on reserve running backs with potential. The pool of available backs will be close to barren in the middle to late rounds, so take a chance based on potential. For example, Fred Taylor could be a steal in Jacksonville should the offense sputter; Tatum Bell has an outside chance at carries in Detroit; and Chris Brown could have a bounce back year in Tennessee now that he's healthy again. It might be a crapshoot, but you never know when the next Domanick (or whatever his name is now) Davis will emerge as a valuable asset.

8. Draft: kickers and defense-special teams for the late rounds. Owners should focus on important skill positions throughout the draft and consider a kicker or defense-special team in the late rounds. While important to the overall value of a roster, these two positions will have enough depth to put aside until the foundation of your team is complete. Enjoy the season everyone, and email me your thoughts at

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