Fantasy Football Rankings

Fantasy Football Player Values

Fantasy football rankings are lists of NFL player rankings according to which fantasy football players you expect to post the best stats in the season. Fantasy football cheat sheets and rankings can be tricky, because every league uses different starting lineup rules and scoring systems. In most fantasy football scoring rules, Drew Brees and Tom Brady will be projected as the top quarterbacks, but with running backs and wide receivers, rules changes can change how the fantasy football rankings will look.

Why Have Fantasy Football Rankings?

Fantasy football rankings are a good way to begin to understand fantasy football player values. For instance, you can look down the player rankings list and get an idea which round certain players are likely to be drafted. If you have a fantasy football cheat sheet that mixes all the positions together, you can take the Top 200 fantasy football players ranked, figure out how many teams are in your league (12 is common) and draw a line under a player every factor of the number of teams in your league (or every 12 picks, in our example). You can assume the first 12 players listed are likely to be 1st rounders, the next 12 players listed are likely to be 2nd rounders and so on.

In this way, you get a general idea of where you are likely to be drafting fantasy football players, based on your rankings. Every fantasy football draft is different and you can't be certain how other league owners are going to have players rated (or which fantasy football cheat sheet they're using), but analyzing the fantasy football rankings does help you prepare for the draft.

Using Fantasy Football Rankings to Determine Which Position to Draft?

Fantasy Football RankingsOften, fantasy football rankings are broken down by players' positions. You are likely to have fantasy football quarterback rankings, fantasy football running back rankings, fantasy football wide receiver rankings and so on. Fantasy owners can use rankings-by-position to decide which fantasy football positions have the most value, and which are scarcest any given year. Here's how you make those judgment calls.

Looking at fantasy football rankings by position helps you decide the relative value of players. For instance, you might see there are 10 quarterbacks you would want to be your #1 starting QB, but there are only 6 tight ends you would feel comfortable with as your #1 starting tight end. If that's the case, then you might build a draft strategy around taking a tight end before taking a quarterback, because there is more value at the quarterback position. This becomes important in the early rounds of a fantasy football draft, because you might have to decide whether to take the 10th best running back in the lower part of the first round or the best wide receiver. Your decision might depend on the relative strengths and weaknesses of the positions in question.

When I look at a fantasy football cheat sheet, I will often break the cheat sheet into tiers or plateaus. Draw a line under the running backs you will settle for as your #1 runner, then draw a second line under the running backs you would want as your 2nd RB. By breaking these backs into tiers and marking off as you go, sometimes your next draft pick will present itself to you. If you have one player left in your top tier at running back, but five wide receivers left in your WR top tier, it's probably wise to grab that final remaining top tier running back.

Are Fantasy Football Rankings Accurate?

The problem with fantasy football rankings is that errors always creep into the rankings. Whether through injuries, ineffectiveness or through the secretive nature of NFL teams, you won't always get the rankings right. Bad luck happens even to the most prepared team with the best fantasy football rankings list.

Since errors in fantasy football rankings are unavoidable, you try to do your best and understand, like NFL scouts and GMs, you're not always going to hit on a player. What you're doing in rating your players to the best of your knowledge is trying to play the odds. If you do your fantasy football homework and draft for value instead of reaching for picks, you are more likely than your opponents to field the better fantasy football team every week. While that doesn't assure a win, a solid understanding of fantasy football player values assure you the best opportunity to win at fantasy football.

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