Fantasy Football Mock Drafts

Fantasy Football Mock Draft Strategies

The idea of fantasy football mock drafts may sound silly to the uninitiated. Let's be honest, fantasy football drafts are easy to mock for those who don't live and breathe the fantasy football game. From their perspective, what we do is silly -- pretend to "draft" millionaire superstar sports celebrities to play for our "team" and compete against other fantasy dorks in a "league"? Sometimes it seems downright laughable.

But we take it seriously. Those of us who have tasted the sweet flavor of a league championship, or even duked it out head to head in the fantasy playoffs -- we understand the rewards that come from a studious and (let's admit )slightly lucky fantasy gambit.

A mock draft is probably the most useful tool at your disposal as a soon-to-be-drafting fantasy football owner. Mock drafts are available all over the Internet, and if you're studly enough and have enough interested buddies, it's totally possible (and a lot of fun )to run an in person mock draft with some fantasy obsessed friends.

The benefits to running a mock draft are legion. If you're new to the fantasy football game, you'll want to have a handle on how a draft works before you jump in and play owner. The last thing you want to do, if you're a rookie fantasy owner, is waltz into your draft wet behind the ears, scared to death, ignorant of draft procedures and ethics and make an idiot out of yourself. Besides the embarrassment, being unprepared for a draft can mean an entire season of fantasy football woes -- not to mention a fat number in the L column.

Fantasy football mock drafts can save you from the embarrassment of the typical ignorant fantasy owner draft. You've seen it before -- guys who draft a RB in the first two rounds, then a couple QBs in the next two followed by a backup RB, then filling in the blanks with whatever garbage is available. Sure, this may work for you sometimes, but don't you find it a little formulaic and boring? Fantasy football is supposed to be fun, and a mock draft should be your window into a new world of drafting strategy.

When you run a fantasy football mock draft, you have the luxury of trying out wild strategies that you may not have the chance to test otherwise. You can run as many mock drafts as time allows. Try something bizarre -- draft the best WR you can find as your first pick, then grab the best team defense, and see how your draft shakes out. Or go all out, draft a kicker with the top pick and let the chips fall where they lay. If nothing else, the mock draft gives you the opportunity to kick the tires of your old strategy and make sure it is running right.

Maybe you're planning on using a new draft strategy this season -- not everyone can use the tried and true tier strategy with success. Many fantasy owners are starting to draft position players in new and interesting orders, reflecting a shift away from traditional performance scoring leagues to interest in PPR, or maybe it reflects a change in the NFL, from a RB dominated league to one in which WRs are starting to gain respect. If you'd like to try drafting a WR in the second round, sandwiched by respectable RBs, go ahead and run a mockup to see if your theory fails. The point is -- anything goes in a fantasy football mock draft.

Fantasy Football Mock DraftsAnother use of the mock draft is to test strategy for a not-so-favorable draft order. If, for instance, you're worried about your strategy for picking last, consider running a mock draft wherein you select WRs in the first two rounds. I did this in one of my leagues this season -- I'll admit that at first I did it on a whim. I realized, with a super late pick in the first round, that I didn't particularly care for any of the big name RBs after the first five or six left the board. By grabbing Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Johnson back to back (I was last in a serpentine draft )I could be looking at well over 400 fantasy points between just those two. If I'd selected a RB, as conventional wisdom suggests, I'd have been stuck with LT (who I just plain do not like as a fantasy choice anymore )or at best Brian Westbrook. We'll see how my WR-WR double pick plays out as the season continues . . . so far, so good.

None of that weird strategy I devised would have been possible without fantasy football mock drafts. New or unique draft strategies are usually labeled "high risk - high reward", but using mock drafts, you can take some of the risk out of the equation. Sure, your mock draft will never play out just like your live draft, but if nothing else you won't feel so shaky about a new draft plan on the big day.

One of the worst mistakes you could make as a fantasy football owner is thinking you've got the draft on lockdown. Depending on your order in the draft, and depending on the strategy of the owners around you, you may find yourself scrambling for players, running out of time, and holding a roster that looks nothing like what you wanted. Fantasy football mock drafts are like insurance against ignorance.

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