Sunday, August 02, 2009

FDH Fantasy Newsletter: Volume II, Issue XXX

Welcome to our 46th edition of the FDH Fantasy Newsletter, as we continue to bring you weekly fantasy sports updates in addition to our usual content on Our archive of past editions is available right here on The Blog and specific links to past editions are available on the front page of

In this week's edition, serialized from our brand-new FANTASY FOOTBALL DRAFTOLOGY 2009, we bring you the following:

^ Don't Be That Guy
^ 2009 Fantasy Overview
^ Suggested League Guidelines

Don't Be That Guy

^ Don’t be that guy who is unprepared and whines in the mid to late rounds that everyone worth taking is already gone. They’re not, you’re just woefully unprepared.

^ Don’t be that guy who doesn’t properly understand your league’s scoring system. League setups are like snowflakes; no two are the same. Our draft board is configured to conform to a fairly basic scoring system (illustrated below), but your league could well have some quirks that would force you to make adaptations to our board. Be aware of them.

^ Don’t be that guy who doesn’t pay enough attention and selects players who are already off the board. It’s impolite to your leaguemates and it will invariably break your concentration when everyone howls at you and you’ve got to go back to Square One on a backup pick. To ensure that you are aware of everything that is going on during your draft, utilize a “grid” to track all teams, with the number of rounds going down the left side and the teams listed in order along the top.

^ Don’t be that guy who approaches the draft like it’s a night of epic decision-making. If you’ve done your homework, it’s not. You merely find out where you’re drafting and you “let the draft come to you.” Trust your draft board, abide by it and don’t overrule your rankings lightly. Weeks of preparation will trump minutes of frantic guessing anytime.

^ Don’t be that guy who has ironclad rules, like the weenies who always say, “I’m going to take running backs with my first two picks.” Really? No matter how picked-over they are? That’s insane. To a certain extent, this goes back to the last point about letting the draft come to you. When everyone else zigs, you zag and you’ll get value with every pick.

2009 Fantasy Overview

^ Now more than ever, you have to abandon the feeling that you have to be super-comfortable with every pick. Even Adrian Peterson, with his past injury history and his 2008 workload, cannot possibly engender the amount of comfort that LT did in past years, but he still rates the top pick. Matt Forte was a lightly-regarded rookie at this time last year, but he still merits top-five selection. DeAngelo Williams is now a legitimate first-round pick despite having his team’s top draft pick of a year ago pushing him for time and probably taking away goal-line carries. Especially very early in the draft, you just have to do what the draft board tells you to do in a given situation without worrying about that little voice in your head saying, “WHAT???”

^ While there are fewer slam-dunk picks at any position than most years in recent history (due in part to the RB-by-committee trend that we have been chronicling since 2005), there is also more depth overall than in most years. We rate 8 QBs and 8 RBs as worthy of the #1 level and while we only rate 5 WRs at that level, our acceptable level of #2 WRs goes all the way down to 20. Wide receiver depth in particular this season is quite incredible. While our first point warns you that your first pick or two may leave you feeling cold purely on a gut level, your subsequent selections will fill you with joy if you draft properly.

^ Every season is different and while last year’s numbers are never to be used as an absolute in terms of predicting this year, so too should last year’s trends be considered in the same manner. Last year saw the emergence of many top-flight RBs, many of them under the radar at the beginning of the season. This year should be closer to the norm, with few RBs breaking out big-time and the most likely ones being the ones picked high last April (Beanie Wells, Knowshon Moreno).

Suggested League Guidelines

Many leagues start 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 1TE, 1 K and some D/ST combination. Some leagues allow the TE position to be WR or TE (in which case, only a few TEs merit any consideration) and some have a “flex” position, which is generally 1 additional RB or WR. With leagues who utilize defense, some deploy a team D/ST unit and some use individual D players.

The most common scoring system is a variation of the following: 4 points per passing TD, 1 point per 25 yards passing, 1 point per passing 2-point PAT, 6 points per receiving or rushing TD, 1 point per 10 yards rushing or receiving, 2 points per rushing or receiving 2-point PAT, 2 points per “big play touchdown” (50 or more yards), 1 point per kicking PAT, 3 points per FG, with a 1-point bonus at 45 yards, a 2-point bonus at 50 yards and a 3-point bonus at 55 yards, 6 points per defensive or special teams TD, 1 point per interception, sack or fumble recovered and 2 points per safety. In leagues that award 6 points for passing TDs, QBs are worth much more.


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