Fantasy Football is upon us and what’s better than to figure out which strategy is the best to follow for the best fantasy team. To begin, I used NFL.com’s Michael Fabiano and his, “The best fantasy football draft strategy for 2018,” to contrast my personal “make the best starting line-up and see what happens,” less official strategy.
The ESPN Fantasy Football App was the weapon of choice; the mock draft option and plentiful lobbies made this experiment a possibility. Simply put, I could join a fake league, draft my team for research purposes, then everything is deleted and the Etch a Sketch returns to the grey background. I had originally made some mock drafts for my personal use, using picks Three, Six and Ten as my subjects and when using the professional analyst’s strategy, positioned myself at six again (thinking) to get some kind of equivalent results. Fabiano’s strategy goes as follows:
1st Pick – RB
2nd Pick – RB/WR
3rd Pick – RB/WR (depending on the combination already selected)
4th Pick – RB/WR (depending on combination again, he recommends 2 Starting RBs and WRs)
5th Pick – Best Available RB/WR Depth
6th Pick – Best Available RB/WR Depth (Possibly Aaron Rodgers or high-end TEs)
7th Pick – Best Available RB/WR Depth or high-end TE
8th Pick – QB/TE Options or RB/WR Depth (he suggests only high-end TE and QBs if you must)
9th Pick – QB/TE yet he still recommends the RB/WR depth
10th-13th Pick – RB/WR Depth, QB/TE if not done so already
14th Pick – Best K or Def Available
15th Pick – Best K or Def Available
If you’re in a standard 12 man league such as myself, you must tweak the strategy just a bit, making the long haul of RB/WR Depth last one round longer, but otherwise, a fairly simple recipe to follow. These are the results of the plan compared to my own.
10th – RB Peyton Barber Viking DEF
15th – Panthers Def RB Doug Martin
16th – K Matt Prater RB D’Onta Foreman
I am sure Fabiano would see this line-up and assume I haven’t won a fantasy league, and am nothing superior to a newb for rushing on my QB, TE, DEF and K, along with abandoning any WR depth but I still like the team I had drafted. (Enough to put a funny team name but neglect to leave my actual name and email in the league homepage.) Full disclosure, I did my draft previous to finding the article on NFL.com and was tickled to see some similarities along with the glaring differences.
Naturally, my bias’s ran semi-parallel to Fabiano’s, yet the urges to take some players off the board were too tempting to ignore. Andrew Luck in the 7th round wasn’t the best pick; he could’ve gone a few more rounds in the draft and the only thing making him relevant to the team would be the connection with T.Y. Hilton, but nevertheless, I believed Luck to be the best available option. Fabiano believes otherwise in his article, but we’re not all paid to be fantasy analysts I suppose.
As for a conclusion, much could be said about both teams, though Fabiano’s fable team is the shiny winner in my book. The clear depth of players and late rounds of Kickers and Defense makes the decision for itself. My team is ready for the season but any injury to either of my starting RB or WRs and I am undoubtablely crippled for the upcoming weeks, Fabiano has the deepness of his team to last the whole season, only troubled by having a sub-par Defense and Kicker.