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Can a Girl Get Some Help?

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Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby caligal » Mon Jul 02, 2007 11:40 pm

Hello fellow football fans/fantasy football players. I just joined a league and this is my first season as an owner. I am the only female in my league and I'm itching to beat some of these guys that have been playing for a couple of years now. I am studying up to get a feel for game strategies. Can you help me out? What are some helpful hints or tips that you pros think I should know? Thanks for helping out this lady underdog. :)
-Caligal
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby FF Newbie » Tue Jul 03, 2007 2:21 am

Hey, caligirl. Welcome to the Cafe and welcome to fantasy football! There is a ton of information out there on the game, but the basics are really pretty simple, so don't let it overwhelm you. The most important part of fantasy football is the draft. You need to be prepared for the draft by checking out several "cheatsheets," which are rankings of all the players, either by each position separately or of all players at every position in a single ranking. It's also a good idea to check out the Average Draft Position (ADP) of players, so you'll know generally where each player is drafted. You don't want to draft a player 3 or 4 rounds before you have to. If you haven't played before, you should participate in a few "mock drafts" to get your feet wet and gain some experience before the real thing. There are several good sites where you can "mock" for free.

Everyone will tell you the most important position in fantasy football is running back. That's because there are a limited numaber of "workhorse" running backs that most of the rushing duties for their team. Those RBs are very valuable. A number of teams utilize a "running back by committee" approach where two or more running backs split the carries. This reduces the value of those RBs--the fewer carries a RB gets, the fewer yards and TDs he will accumulate. A few very good offensive teams, most notably the Saints and Cowboys, use two RBs, but the offense is good enough that both RBs produce very good numbers. That is especially true of the Saints. But, in general, top-quality RBs are scarce. QBs, WRs and TEs are easier to find. It's usually a good idea to wait until late in the draft to take a defense and it is ALWAYS a good idea to take a kicker with one of your last two picks.

The basics of fantasy football are pretty much always the same, but there are many types of leagues, scoring systems and rules pertaining to trades and the waiver wire. Make sure you understand the differences and know your own league inside and out. Player values will be greatly affected by the number of players you start at each position, the number of teams in the league and the scoring system. How heavily are yards and TDs weighted? Some players accumulate a lot of yards and not many touchdowns and others vice-versa. Are points awarded for receptions? If so, running backs that catch a lot of passes will have more value than those that don't. What is defensive scoring like? Are passing TDs worth 4 points or 6? If they're worth 6 points, QBs are worth a little more. Are points given for return yardage? If so, WRs that also return kicks or punts have extra value.

Football Guys has put together a pretty good Beginner's Guide to fantasy football, which you can find here: http://footballguys.com/articles/07beginners1.htm. It's a 12-part series and it's pretty in depth, but don't let that scare you. Just try to understand the major points from each article. Beyond that, I'm sure the guys here will have plenty of good advice and hopefully refer you to some other good resources. Good luck and feel free to stick around for a while!

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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby FF Newbie » Tue Jul 03, 2007 2:34 am

Here are some resources that might help you out.

Cafe 2007 May Mock Draft. This will give you a general idea of what a draft will look like.

http://www.fantasyfootballcafe.com/2007 ... _draft.php


Player Rankings

Cafe 2007 Early Player Rankings (by position): http://www.fantasyfootballcafe.com/player_rankings.php

Football Guys Consensus Rankings (you can look at the overall rankings or position-by-position): http://subscribers.footballguys.com/app ... owrecent=7


Average Draft Position (from Mock Drafts)

Fantasy Football Calculator: http://www.fantasyfootballcalculator.co ... p?teams=12 (this is for 12-team leagues)

Antsports: http://www.antsports.com/adp.aspx (Antsports is also good for participating in mock drafts)


Anyone else have any sites or resources to suggest?
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby dream_017 » Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:10 am

Welcome to the cafe ;-D

FF really hit on all the major information. Stick around here and you should do very good. Read a lot of the threads to pick up on peoples thoughts.

As for a reference, I really like fftoday.com
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby Plindsey88 » Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:29 am

Well, my first piece of advice is this.... I wouldn't go around to too many fantasy football websites advertising the fact that you are female.... You'd be better off hanging a T-Bone around your neck and going to play in Michael Vick's kennel... I have to wonder how many private messages you have gotten so far (or will get) saying something like, "Always happy to help. PM me with any questions you have."

LOL... :-)


With that said, welcome to the Cafe... This is your one-stop-shop for all the advice you will need... But, it's important to learn a little bit about the league you are playing in, so we can customize our advice for your specific league requirements, so let's go over the basics....


The first thing you need to do is to establish the type of league you are in... There are three basic types:

(1) Redraft - this is a league where there is a fresh draft every year. All the players are thrown back into the pool at the end of the season and each season everything starts all over again.

(2) Keeper - this is a league where you get to keep some of the players on your roster from year to year. Everyone who is not "kept" gets thrown back into the pool, and a new draft is done every year with those players and rookies, only. Usually in keeper leagues you keep 2 - 5 players. The strategy differs a little in a keeper because a premium is put on young players that you can keep for many years. You are not only looking at short term (one-season) production, but at the long-term potential of your draft selections.

(3) Dynasty - this is a league where you keep your entire roster from year to year. After the initial draft all subsequent drafts include only rookies and "free agents." Free agents are players which were not drafted and not picked up by any teams during the course of the season. You will often hear these players referred to as "on the wire." That simply means they aren't on anyone's roster and are therefore available to anybody. But, getting back on topic, a Dynasty league is the most realistic league when compared to the actual NFL. In a dynasty, because the only major influx of talent onto your team is through the rookies you draft, a HUGE premium is put on young talent, and you're really focusing on the long-term potential of guys more than the season at hand. I do not recommend Dynasty leagues to people new to the hobby, because if you screw up the initial draft, you'll be paying for it for the next 3-5 years. And that's not going to be any fun.

Now that you understand the type of league you are in, it is important to consider starting positions. Your roster will usually consist of 15-18 players. Of those players, you'll start 9-10 of them every week. Starting positions in a basic league are as follows:

(1) QB - Quarterback
(2) RB - Running Backs
(3) WR - Wide Receivers
(1) TE - Tight End
(1) K - Kicker
(1) DEF - Defense

However, there are many variations of this format that can effect your strategy. The most common variation is the inclusion of a so-called "FLEX" position. This is a starting position that can be filled by players at multiple positions. The most common flex position is a RB/WR spot. This is a starting position that you can plug a running back or a wide receiver into. Most leagues with a flex spot have the following starting requirements:

(1) QB - Quarterback
(2) RB - Running Backs
(2) WR - Wide Receivers
(1) RB/WR - Running Back or Wide Receiver
(1) TE - Tight End
(1) K - Kicker
(1) DEF - Defense

There are literally hundreds of variations when it comes to starting line-ups, but those are the two most common... So figure out what your starting requirements are, as this will be crucial to your strategy... You'll most often hear the above two referred to as "standard" for the first league and "flex" for the second league...

When you post questions here at the cafe, you'll want to include this information... That is to say, you'll start your questions by saying something like, "10-Team Redraft with Standard Starting Requirements" or "10-Team Keeper with a RB/WR Flex Spot."

People will be able to give you better advice with that information. If you have a screwy league that does not fit into one of the above formats, then you'll want to specifically list your starting requirements. For example, I have a league that starts:

(1) QB
(1) QB/RB
(1) RB
(2) RB/WR
(1) WR/TE
(1) TE
(1) K
(1) DEF

When I ask questions on the cafe about that league, I say, "16-Team Keeper... QB, QB/RB, RB, RB/WR, RB/WR, WR/TE, TE, K, DEF..." That way people can customize their advice based on that starting line-up...

Strategies will vary greatly based on your starting requirements, so be sure to take that into consideration, especially if your requirements are crazy, like the league I just mentioned.

Now that we know your league type and starting requirements, comes the truly critical element - Scoring...

Every league has a different way of awarding points to players. The (3) critical scoring elements to consider are:

(1) Passing Points
(2) Rushing (running) Points
(3) Receiving Points

The most common type of scoring is what I will refer to as "Standard Scoring." This scoring goes as follows:

Passing Yards: 25 yards = 1 point
Passing Touchdowns: 1 TD = 4 points

Rushing Yards: 10 yards = 1 point
Rushing Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points

Receiving Yards: 10 yards = 1 point
Receiving Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points

If your league has that kind of scoring, you will qualify your scoring as standard. That is say, you will begin your questions by saying something like, "10-Team League, Standard Starting Requirements, Standard Scoring..." People will assume you have the scoring above when you say that, and they can customize their advice accordingly.

There is one very common variation to the scoring above. That is the so-called "PPR" league. PPR stands for "points per reception." These are leagues where players are awarded a single point for each reception. That is to say the receiving scoring looks like this:

Receiving Yards: 10 yards = 1 point
Receiving Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points
Receptions: 1 reception = 1 point

You will want to tell people if your league is a PPR or not, because those leagues are becoming more and more common, and the strategies can vary greatly between a PPR and a non-PPR. So figure that part out, and start your questions with a statement that says something like, "12-Team League, Flex Line-up, Standard PPR Scoring..." That lets people know that you earn a point per reception.

The other common scoring is what we call "TD-heavy scoring." That simply means that when compared to points for yards, there are comparatively more points awarded for TD's than for yardage. An example of TD-Heavy scoring would be:

Passing Yards: 50 yards = 1 point
Passing Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points

Rushing Yards: 20 yards = 1 point
Rushing Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points

Receiving Yards: 20 yards = 1 point
Receiving Touchdowns: 1 TD = 6 points

In the above scoring, the number of yards your players rack up is of less importance than the number of TD's they score. So you'll want to tell people that it is a TD-Heavy league by saying something like this, "10-Teamer, Flex Line-up, TD-Heavy Scoring with no PPR..."

I think that covers the basics....

Now, you just need to know how to proceed with your draft...

As a general rule I advise people NOT to go into their draft with the positions they want to draft each round set-in-stone, but for a beginner, this can be very helpful. You may not win a championship in your first year, but you should be able to hold your own and beat out at least a good percentage of the guys. So, with that said, I suggest going into your draft with the following template:

Round One: Running Back
Round Two: Running Back
Round Three: Running Back
Round Four: Wide Receiver
Round Five: Wide Receiver
Round Six: Quarterback
Round Seven: Tight End
Round Eight: Running Back
Round Nine: Wide Receiver

This will fill your crucial positions, and give you two back-up Running Backs (with standard starting requirements), which is crucial. ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS - no matter what anyone tells you - draft your defense in the 2nd to last round and your kicker in the very last round... NO MATTER WHAT!

For all the rounds between Round Nine and 2nd to last round, draft back-ups. Make your back-ups the guys on your cheat sheet who are the highest rated guys at their positions, but keep these rules in mind:

(1) Never Draft more than one kicker or defense.
(2) Never draft more than two quarterbacks.
(3) Never draft more than two tight ends.
(4) Always try to draft the back-up running back to the guy you take in the first round, but make him your fourth or fifth running back.
(5) When in doubt, always draft a running back over any other position.

Now, you just need to go find some good cheat sheets. FF Newbie gave you some good places to start up above... I personally like to use the rankings here at the Cafe: CLICK HERE

And, be sure to ask for as much advice as possible both before and after your draft in our "Draft, Trade, and Keeper Forum." You can find that here: CLICK HERE

Other than that, there are only about 200 more things to know... Maybe lets start with you telling us about your league, based on the information I just gave you, and you can get some more good advice...

Hopefully I have given you enough to get started, though...
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby TripleLatte » Tue Jul 03, 2007 10:42 am

Lots of good info above but here are some basic pointers:
http://ffrankings.com/drafttips.html
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby mrblitz » Tue Jul 03, 2007 2:48 pm

I think Plindsey, said it all. Nicely done. ;-D
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby Popcynical » Tue Jul 03, 2007 4:51 pm

Also, you may want to try some mock drafts at Fantasy Football Calculator to get the feel of the whole drafting thing. I'd recommend doing as many as you can.
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby Dawinner127 » Tue Jul 03, 2007 7:21 pm

mrblitz wrote:I think Plindsey, said it all. Nicely done. ;-D

Agreed. My eye's are hurting from reading all of that now ;-D Great posts guys. Also, welcome to the cafe caligirl. I've been around here for a little under a year, and these guys are a great help! I've learned tons from here. Just stick around for a while and you'll learn a ton. Welcome!!
A win next week and all is forgotten.
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Re: Can a Girl Get Some Help?

Postby Juke » Wed Jul 04, 2007 7:08 am

caligal wrote:Hello fellow football fans/fantasy football players. I just joined a league and this is my first season as an owner. I am the only female in my league and I'm itching to beat some of these guys that have been playing for a couple of years now. I am studying up to get a feel for game strategies. Can you help me out? What are some helpful hints or tips that you pros think I should know? Thanks for helping out this lady underdog. :)
-Caligal


Caligal - welcome to fantasy football! It is the great equalizer and more and more woman are winning more and more leagues each year! Here's hoping you add to that list at the end of the year!

As for help, IMO there are three sites (outside of the Cafe) that are at the cream of the crop. They all have free and pay components, but the free information is very good IMO (checkout articles), and I will leave it to you to look at the pay content to decide if you want to go that route.

http://www.footballdocs.com
http://www.fftoday.com
http://www.footballguys.com

Both footballdocs and fftoday have free articles and free regular season content (start/sit, pick-up / drop, articles etc). FFtoday is free except for their draft compiler. Very good stuff there. Footballdocs articles are free, but charges for their rankings, magazine, software, etc in a draft package. Very good stuff in that package if interested. Love the fact it is updated every week (only site I know that does that), so you don't get embarrassed in your draft with outdated rankings and injured players. Footballguys is free until mid-summer, then everything is pay. Definately go over there to checkout the info while free. They have a very large volume of detailed information. Can be a little overwhelming as a beginner, but as you get more experienced you will appreciate what they have to offer. Then you can decide if you want to pay. At $30 it is very pricey as far as subscriptions go, but the content is high quality.

Bottom line there are a lot of sites out there and most come today and are gone tomorrow (for good reason). With the above three and the Cafe, it comes down to a single word: Trust. They've all been around for a while (at least as far as fantasy sites go), and there is good reason for that.

GOOD LUCK THIS YEAR!! You did the right thing by coming to the CAFE first!!! Good people participating run by good owners. Quality stuff through the years ;-D
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