It’s that time of year again folks. The sun is shining, the days are long and beautiful, and the air is filled with the laughter of children. All of that is going on while you are inside doing endless research and mock drafts for your fantasy football league, running on nothing but energy drinks and Doritos. And when you finally do emerge from your fantasy football bender, you look like Tom Hanks in Castaway. Well, you can all breathe easier because your pal Zack at The Sports Tank is here to give you some assistance. Now, you may be wondering why you should listen to some stranger who sounds like every other know-it-all on the internet, but I will tell you why: I have been doing fantasy football for 12 years, and I have won 5 fantasy championships in 7 matchups. There is luck involved in it of course, but it’s not all luck. If it was, then your drunk friend who talks about his glory days in Pop Warner would win the league with 7 New York Jets on his team.
So, do you want to know who to avoid this year? Are you ready to get one step closer to fantasy football dominance? If you answered yes, or have nothing better to do for the next 5 minutes, then follow me!
Ok, let’s start with some basics here: Do not draft any New York Jets. Don’t do it, you will be taking your misplaced anger out on the dog in November if you draft any Jets in August. Yes, even Matt Forte and Bilal Powell. Forte is old and Powell is a career backup and they both play for a team that is going to be picking 1st in the 2018 Draft. They can both catch passes, but what does it matter when it’s Hackenberg or a McCown throwing the ball? I don’t even remember which McCown it is, is it the one from the awful Verizon commercials 2 years ago or the one that cries and almost took Jay Cutler’s job? Doesn’t matter, they both suck and so will you if you draft any New York Jets.
Next, do not draft Rob Gronkowski or Jordan Reed. I know some Pats fans are going to be angry (angry Pats fans, shocker, isn’t it?) but stay away from Gronk, he is fantasy poison. If you want to embrace your inner gambler, then go ahead and draft him while better options at more important positions are still sitting there. He is a great player, but I want one of my first picks to be my most reliable, and Gronkowski is not reliable. Jordan Reed is the 2nd best TE behind Gronkowski, but what they have in common in ability, they also share in being injury prone. Every player in the NFL is a hit away from their career ending, but Jordan Reed is like a tap on the side of the head, neck, shoulder, or toe from his career ending. I love the guy, and have since his days at Florida, but stay away. How’s the old saying go? “If you really love someone, then sometimes you have to let your drunk friend draft them instead of you,” yeah, I think that’s it.
Wait on Quarterbacks, Defense, and Kickers. Quarterback is a pretty even position once you get passed the usual suspects in Rodgers, Brees, and Brady, but don’t wait so long that you have to choose between Alex Smith and Joe Flacco. Work on your RB’s and WR’s first, and leave the QB alone until you are confident in your skill position players. Defense is another position where some dude always takes the Seahawks or Broncos in the 5th round and then tells you how stupid YOU are while he drinks another Natty Ice. Wait on defense, it is an even field and even if you get stuck with the 49ers defense on draft night for some ungodly reason, you can always use the waiver wire to play the matchups. And for Kicker, just draft them in the last round. They are not the key to your success and if you are relying on Adam Vinatieri to win your matchup, and you aren’t the 2003 Patriots, then your team sucks and it’s your fault. Harsh, but it’s true, it’s damn true!
And my last tip to you, my highly intelligent reader who is obviously writing this all down, is stay a million miles away from Marshawn Lynch and Adrian Peterson. They are two old RB’s who will only serve to anger you this season. Lynch was done two years ago, and Peterson is going to be a shell of his former self, like he was last season. Furthermore, both men will be in the dreaded committee situation. As a matter of fact, if you can avoid it, try and stay away from RB committees in general. It’s a tough thing to avoid, but if/when you are faced with that decision, take the guy who catches more passes in PPR leagues, and take the touchdown vulture in standard leagues. And, as I’m sure you all know, try and get the handcuff later in the draft. But don’t be too disappointed if you have Christian McCaffrey and not Jonathan Stewart, because when Stewart goes down in week 5, the C-MAC attack will be in full effect.
And that wraps things up for my tips to you, they are easy steps to follow, and they will pay off for your team. If you do the little things right, the path to success becomes much clearer. I personally guarantee that short of a Vontaze Burfict hit to your star player’s head or knee, you will make your fantasy playoffs and have a shot at winning that title. Oh, I almost forgot, if your league has the stupid week 17 championship matchup, then scout replacements in advance. It happened to me before, and I am probably the only dude who won a championship because of Tre Mason and lost another because of Fitzgerald Toussaint.
Have a great Draft and remember to buy plenty of alcohol for your friends that night!