Today is my Fantasy Football League's draft. It is the 3rd year for our league and my "Assassins" team is the defending champion.
It is a keeper league, and we get to keep three guys from our 2005 team....but none of those guys can play the same position [you can't keep more than one of any position]. With two years under our belts....talent has been spread across the league. Because of that, LaMont Jordan is the likely #1 overall pick in our draft....with Steven Jackson, Ronnie Brown, Cadillac Williams, Larry Fitzgerlad and Domanick Davis right behind.
It is an 8-team league with a 14 game schedule [everyone plays each other twice] and the top 3 teams make the playoffs. The #2 and #3 teams play in a "wildcard round"....with the winner facing the #1 team in our Super Bowl. We stack up our rosters....and have limited transaction abilities. We carry 3 QBs, 6 RBs, 7 WR/TEs, 2 Ks and 3 DEFs.
Heading into this draft, my keepers are QB Peyton Manning [actually, we do the Team QB thing...so I have all the Colts quarterbacks], RB Clinton Portis of the Redskins and WR Steve Smith of the Panthers. I'm heading into the draft a bit scatterbrained since I make the final pick in the first round....and the first pick of the 2nd round. So that means that I really don't have much of a strategy heading into this thing...aside from the fact that one of those picks will be a running back [and maybe both].
My best attempt at a strategy?? Not much. I pretty much break the draft into thirds. We have an 18 round draft....so every 6 rounds we take a break. That's good, since the draft kinda breaks down to three 6-round sections. The first second [rounds 1-6] are the guys who you really think will be the stars of your fantasy team. Everyone already has a QB, a RB and a WR/TE.....so these guys are usually RBs and WR/TEs that will play a lot of the season. The middle section [rounds 7-12] is where you pick some backups, your top defense, and those sleeper guys that may not be starters now....but could be if the starter struggles or gets hurt [guys like Greg Jones and Marion Barber go here]. The only thing I know I will do is pick my two kickers, #3 QB and my #2 and #3 defenses in the final section [rounds 13-18]. That's what most people do to round out their teams.
Aside from that....who knows?? Last year, I had a plan and scrapped it in Round 2 when Clinton Portis fell to me after a lengthy run on WR/TEs [I drafted Domanick Davis in the first round]. It meant that I would have a bunch of mediocre-to-decent WR/TEs on my roster.....but it worked out for me! I got Roy Williams, Chris Chambers, Steve Smith and Mushin Muhammad in those middle rounds. That sounds great now....but last year, Williams was always hurt, Chambers had AJ Feely throwing to him, Smith was coming off a messed up leg and hadn't played in 12 months and Muhammad who left Smith's side to go to the offensively challenged Bears. All did very, very well for me.
So, hopefully when I come home tonight with my new roster in tow....I will feel thrilled about my chances of repeating. Of course, everyone walks away from the draft with a huge smile on their face. But only one will win the whole thing 5 months later.
Last year, that guy was me.