We've all done snake drafts. They have their ups and downs, but for the last few years, most of the leagues I've played in have been Auction format.
For the sake of those who haven't done an auction (I know all of the regulars here have, but remember, there are tons of lurkers--) the premise is that you have a fictitious sum of money ($200 is probably the most common) independent of your actual league entry fee, if it's a $ league. You take turns putting a player up for auction, but ANYONE can bid on any player, at any time. So it changes the value of your "turn." For instance, if you're targeting a specific player, it's often in your best interest to put his immediate competition up for bid when it's your turn, because you can get people to spend money. If, for instance, you wanted Brady, you might put Brees up. Make someone spend money. Next turn, maybe you put Manning up... there goes another team that won't bid on a starting QB... etc.
But the most important concept is that you control who you get on your team, because you dictate his value.
Anyhow, as this season is drawing to a close for most teams, I thought it'd be amusing to share some of the standout events of my main auction draft.
When reading, you have to remember, the $1 and single digit rounds are always wacky... there are always players of immense value down there, because many teams bid like CRAZY for the projected top picks, and are effectively only able to afford $1 to fill the rest of their rosters. As stupid as that sounds, 2 of the top 4 teams in this league spent their money early and were stuck with $1 players, while both of the others did not. There's always luck involved with "who survives the season."
The current top 5 RB (week 13)
Hillis - $1
McCoy - $18
MJD - $57
We drafted earlier than normal, by necessity, and that ALWAYS puts things out of whack for values... remember, Hillis was not a projected starter, etc.
If I remember correctly, when we drafted the expectation was that Slaton and Foster were going to be splitting carries with Ward in the picture as well, and the projections were for more of a pass heavy offense from the team. Schaub and Andre Johnson were much coveted for that reason. The trend on the Cafe around the time of our draft had Foster going later (2nd-4th round) and within a week or so after our draft he was consensus 1st or 2nd round material. Maddening.
I paid $18 for McCoy, about 1/4 of the way through the whole drafting process. Foster went 5 picks afterward (I already had 3 starting RBs... it's almost unforgivable that he went so cheap!)
The rest of the $18 class:
Steve Smith (CAR)
Jamaal Charles (THIS is another incredible bargain)
The rest of the $11-13 class:
Jay Cutler - $13
Brandon Jacobs - $12
Portis - $12
Crabtree - $11
Bowe - $11
So then, check this out...
The Top 15 money guys in the league:
Peterson - $58
CJ424 - $58
MJD - $57
Turner - $55
Rice - $53
Brees - $50
Gore - $50
Brady - $48
Peyton - $48
Andre - $46
SJax - $46
Aaron Rodgers - $45
Randy Moss - $42
DWilliams - $40 (maybe the biggest bust of the year?)
S. Greene - $37 (one of the next biggest busts of this draft?)
The Flea Market!!! ($1-3 players)
Mike Williams (TB)
That's before Vincent Jackson was sorted out... someone paid $16 for him, expecting him to sit for a few weeks.
Wacky stuff. Auction's the only way to go, for my money!