The NFL season is rapidly approaching, and that means we are only weeks away from analyzing every possible outcome in an attempt to become the best fantasy football owner out there. Let’s discuss the five things that you need to avoid.
1. Don’t Overreact
This is pretty easily the biggest mistake that people make in fantasy in a bunch of different ways, but let’s just talk about on-field performance. Every single week there will be a cheap DFS play or a waiver-wire pickup that is bound to be the next big thing after their breakout game last week. Slow down and ask yourself the why’s before you go all out on owning this player.
Why did this usage or stats increase, and is this a sustainable situation?
Is this player actually this talented?
Are there any other factors that could have led to this performance?
Once you can confidently answer these questions, trust your research and make the correct play.
2. Don’t Ignore Reports (But Don’t Worship Them Either)
Coachspeak and camp reports are some of the biggest talking points surrounding the NFL, and they are great talking points. You need to do the best you can to interpret what is and is not true.
For example, last year the Panthers coaching staff basically told us that Christian McCaffrey would be a top 5 RB if we believed them. Coaches tell us they are going to do stuff all the time, and it doesn’t always come to fruition.
Do the best you can to interpret the information and determine what does or does not make sense. In the CMC case, the Panthers gave CMC the ball nine times on two drives in the second preseason game in under a quarter. After the coachspeak and then seeing that hint, I bought in, and it really benefited me down the line.
3. Don’t Think That You Are The Smartest Person In The Virtual Room
If you want to have success, listen to as many smart people and content as possible. Not one of them is going to be anywhere near 100% right, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth your time.
Every week, I want to hear as many takes about as many players as possible because I don’t want to overlook anything. You are never going to be 100% right, but you want to make sure that you were just simply wrong, instead of overlooking key information.
4. Don’t Get Caught Up In The Hype
This is similar to No. 1, but this is more about the drafting season and people falling in love with certain players. Just because you saw this kid make a crazy catch in the first preseason game, and he has gone from undrafted to round 12, that doesn’t mean you need to take him in the 10th.
Be smart and don’t overreact when drafting young and talented players. Go through the board and figure out what YOU and others think about each player, and you can quickly see who will likely end up on your team. Stay true to your takes and draft your guys instead of the guy you don’t like that was ranked higher.
5. Don’t Draft Without a Plan
Drafting in season-long or DFS requires a lot of strategy if you want to have an edge and confidence, and you should prepare yourself accordingly. Go into a season-long draft with multiple drafts under your belt and see how the team shakes out at different draft positions. Then you will be prepared for a possible dead round or two that you didn’t previously have a plan for.
In DFS, have a plan as to what you want your lineup to look like. Make a stand on a player/stack/game and utilize the correlation to build a GPP winning lineup instead of a decent lineup with a bunch of random “good plays.”