So you're joining a fantasy football league. Congratulations.
Before you get started, remember to kiss your loved ones and tell them you will see them in a few months. Just kidding -- kind of.
But I do want to give you some do's and don't when it comes to your league. This is not a post to tell you who or who you shouldn't start, but an overall mentality to use going into your draft day this season.
Pay. Attention. To. Bye. Weeks.
You're probably reading this thinking "well, duh," but you would be surprised how many people get so caught up in their draft they forget they have multiple players who are sitting out on a bye week and they scrambling to look at the waiver wire that doesn't have the players they really need.
But trades are always fun. And I'm even an advocate for bringing some of the trades off the computer like mowing the lawn or paying for a few rounds of drinks.
But that's it. Don't go offering up firstborns for Christian McCaffrey.
When drafting, remember your RBs are your BFFs
When heading into draft day, your Saquon Barkleys and Le'Veon Bells are going to need back up at those positions. And don't get too caught up in the ADP rankings with some of those sleeper picks when it comes to those scenarios (I'll go more into depth with ADP's later). Sleepers are there to surprise you, as you then spend the rest of your Sunday, or Monday at work, being the big man or woman on campus.
Pay your dues
Being a commissioner for a fantasy football league absolutely sucks. It's that person who decided to have fun and round up those close to them -- whether geographically close or not -- and they are in charge of setting everything up. Make it easy on them by paying the buy-in you promised.
Seriously, don't be a butthead.
Participate in mock drafts
Oh hell yes -- be nerdy about it.
This can help in many ways. For instance, you can get a better understanding of a player's value as it pertains to the overall roster and performance. It helps with the fluctuations as well. It's also a big bonus when it comes to the rookies you'll be working with and against once the season begins. You can get a slight edge knowing how they will fare.
It can help with your timing as well if you're doing a snake format.
There also are billions of mocks online that you can view to give you that extra boost of confidence.
Pay attention during the draft
This is mainly for the ones that you have to do from your computer.
I've been to live drafts where a majority of us were present, but we had to depend on Chris and Brian who were across the country and doing the draft on their computer. We weren't physically there to tell Chris and Brian to pay attention and they would usually make their pick at the last minute which left us waiting.
Obviously, you don't want to rush them either. But you get where I'm going with this.
PAY ATTENTION TO THE NEWS
I put this is in caps because it's important.
Twitter is perfect for this. Stay up to date on injuries, starters, match-ups, Antonio Brown #HelmetGate2019 and everything else. I usually put my Twitter notifications on during these times from Adam Schefter, Field Yates, Marcas Grant, Dave Richard, Liz Loza, etc.
There are so many people out there who can keep you up to date, but be careful -- this is also the time of year where everyone dubs themselves a "fantasy football expert." But stay in the lines when it comes to Twitter etiquette (I have some tips on that as well.)
If you're physically going to a draft party or event-- bring something. A bottle of wine, a casserole, chips and dip -- anything.
This is just being polite.
@ players on Twitter
Do not. AND I REPEAT -- DO NOT mention players on Twitter in a negative sense.
Don't be that guy or girl who yells at you-know-who because he didn't gain enough yards to have you beat your college roommate who you still hold a grudge against because they ended up with the person you were eyeing and never had the guts to ask out.
Once again, don't do this.
Rely heavily on ADP
ADP (average draft position) is an amazing tool for measurement, but I sometimes view it as a popularity contest. Kind of like depending on average weekly fantasy points. It's a good thing to look at, but you have to look at the entire picture. Plus, it makes you look like you know what you're talking about.
We all like that.
ADP can't measure heart. ADP doesn't measure redemption games. ADP doesn't measure whether a guy is starting or sitting that week.
Yeah, that sounded Nicholas Sparks-y, but you get it.
Do anything stupid in your draft
The regular rules apply -- go with the running backs first and foremost and go from there with your wide receivers and your tight ends will eventually follow. This, of course, is pertaining to those standard fantasy football formats.
And make sure you are aware of the rounds.
I don't care that you're a huge New England Patriots fan or that you were born in Baltimore (yeah, I made that personal) so you have to take a chance on Lamar Jackson early in the draft.
Stick to the normal rules. Don't make it weird.
I get it, things come up. Your wife went into labor, your boyfriend planned date night when he knew you had previous engagements.
You can't reschedule bringing a precious baby angel into the world, but you can reschedule date night -- unless you don't mind her being on her phone the entire night when the deep-fried ravioli is brought to the table. By the time dessert comes out, you have barely made eye contact and your fantasy team will be the least of your worries.
If not, pay someone a few bucks to stand in for you. But you better trust them. Don't have your cousin draft Tom Brady in the first round. I don't care if he starts having running back yard-gaining abilities and can catch like Davante Adams all of a sudden.
Forget this is fun
We all love a little competition. I see the way some of you play slow pitch softball, it's quite terrifying. But this is fun -- that's the entire point of it.
Also, don't forget to take a break from it once in a while and enjoy your real life. This is fantasy football.
On that note, don't forget to have a prize in addition to the pool money at the end of the season -- and that's making sure the loser suffers.
If you need any ideas on that front, just ask me.
More fantasy football draft kit content
- Top 100 player rankings for this season
- One to draft, one to avoid at each position
- Five sleepers you should target in your league
- Potential busts you should avoid on draft day
- Players you shouldn't draft in the first round
- Running backs who need fantasy handcuffs
- Top 10 QB-receiver stacks you should consider
- PPR explained, and three targets in that format
- Fantasy team names that make leagues more fun
- Where you should reasonably draft 49ers players
- Where you should reasonably draft Raiders players