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Best Fantasy Football Tips

Updated on September 9, 2014

Best Tips For Winning Your Fantasy Football League

With summer winding down, it can only mean one thing - the NFL football season's coming. That also means that it's time to start drafting fantasy football teams. When you play the fantasy game of football, you get to select the players you think will put up the best stats for your team. This means that you may even watch a game between two teams with no playoff hopes late in the same if you have a player, or players, on the field.

The great thing about fantasy football is that you only get one chance to win per week. Each player only plays once, so every single game means a lot. You'll no doubt find yourself following games that you wouldn't if you didn't play fantasy.

You need to have a strategy if you want to win your fantasy football league this year. By drafting well and keeping up on all of the player news during the season, you'll give your team a much better chance of victory each week. Here are the best fantasy football tips.

Best Fantasy Football Tips For Joining Or Creating A League

Once you decide to play fantasy football, you need to go about creating or joining a league. Fortunately, there are plenty of places online that will allow you to create or join a league for free and will keep track of your player's stats for you. Here are the best fantasy football tips for joining or creating a league.

1. Use one of the major sites to create or join a league on - The well known fantasy football sites are the best ones to play at. So many people are playing on these sites that you won't have any problem finding a league to play in. I personally like Yahoo! Fantasy Football the best, but there are a few others that are linked to below.

2. Select the type of draft you want - There are 2 main choices when it comes to fantasy football drafts - snake and auction drafts. Snaking drafts are the more popular of the two. In a 10 team league, the teams will draft 1st through 10th in round one, 10th through 1st in round two, and so on. In an auction draft, each team starts with the same amount of play money and you bid on the players you want. If you plan on joining multiple leagues, you can try both types of draft.

3. Know the scoring settings of your league - When you join a league, one of the best fantasy football tips is to go over the settings. You need to know if you are joining a point per completion or a point per reception league, how many points touchdowns are worth for each position, defense and special teams settings, and more. The settings can make a big difference in when you draft a certain position. For instance, is passing TDs are worth 6 points, you may draft a QB earlier than you would if passing TDs were worth 4. Go through the settings in any fantasy football league you join and draft accordingly.

Drew Brees
Drew Brees
Andre Johnson
Andre Johnson

Best Fantasy Football Drafting Tips

Once you join or create a fantasy football league, you'll have to put together your team during the draft. Drafting the right players can give you a better shot to win early in the fantasy season, and win it all if you can avoid injuries. There are plenty of differences between picking your players in a snaking draft or an auction. The majority of leagues do a snaking draft, and here are the best fantasy football drafting tips for them.

1. Load your team with running backs and wide receivers - Pretty much every fantasy football league has more slots for RBs and WRs than other positions, sometimes a lot more. They also score a bunch of points, and will produce most of your teams scoring. This means that you need to draft plenty of them - for your starting lineup and your bench.

2. Pick a quarterback at the right time - Quarterback is a high scoring fantasy football position, but in most leagues you'll only be able to start one per week. This means that you will likely draft 2 or 3 of them total depending on the size of your bench. When you pick one depends of many things such as how many points passing yards and touchdowns are worth. The lower the points they score, the longer you should wait. You also need to be aware of how many QBs are getting drafted early. If they're going fast, you may want to go ahead and grab one.

3. Wait a bit before picking a tight end - Tight end is another position that will likely have only one slot on most fantasy rosters. Many tight ends have had great seasons in recent years, but even the best won't put up the receiving yard and touchdown numbers of a lot of wide receivers. There are also plenty of solid tight ends right now, so you can wait and still get one that will produce.

4. Wait a bit longer before drafting a defense - How much a defense can score will depend on the settings of your league. It will also depend on the team they are playing against each week. Every team is going to play some teams with a strong offense, so they probably aren't going to get a huge point total every single week. Even if you wait a while, you will likely get a solid defense. If not, you can always play the matchups and pick up the right defense of off free agency during the season.

5. Wait until near the end of the draft before picking a kicker - Every normal fantasy football league will have a kicker slot, so of course you'll need one. The thing about kickers is that there's usually not that much of a difference between the top scorer and the tenth best when it comes to points scored per game. In fact, one of the top fantasy football tips is to wait until the last round to pick a kicker.

6. Pay attention to bye weeks - One of the best fantasy football tips while drafting is to keep track of the bye weeks for the players you select. If you have too many starters with the same bye week, you may be at a disadvantage that week. There is reverse strategy to this - if you draft a lot of players with the same bye, you won't have to worry about them as much during other weeks. At the very least you should try to draft bench players with different bye weeks than your probable starters.

Best Fantasy Football Season Tips

There will plenty of things you can during the regular fantasy season to improve your team. With bye weeks, injuries, and even suspensions, it's likely that you will have to shake up your team at various times throughout the season. Here are the best fantasy football tips to follow during the season.

1. Check waiver and free agent lists regularly - Football is a tough game, and injuries are inevitable. This especially true of running backs, which is usually the most important position of a fantasy football squad. One of the top fantasy football tips is to look at who's available on waivers or in free agency. There will certainly be players who step up and ones who wind up starting due to injury to another player, and you need to grab these players before anyone else. There also always seems to be a few players who come out of nowhere to blow up in the last few games of the season, which can be the difference between winning and losing a championship.

2. Offer trades when needed - Once you get into the season, you're bound to find out what the strengths and weaknesses of your fantasy football team are. One of the best fantasy football tips is to try trading with another team manager to strengthen the weak links of your squad. With the different ways of scoring for each position, it's easier to offer a good trade in fantasy football than it is in other fantays sports. For instance, if you have a strong running back on your bench and need a solid wide receiver, you can offer trade to a team with an extra receiver that needs a running back. You can also try trading 2 players for 1 player and vice versa if you think it can improve your squad.

3. Make necessary changes during bye weeks - Everybody on your football team will have a week off between weeks 4 and 10 of the season. During these bye weeks you'll need to start players on your bench, or even pick up free agents, to fill your starting roster for the week.

4. Mind your Ps and Qs - This means to keep track of any players in your starting lineup who are listed as probable or questionable. Probable players will likely play, but you'll have to keep up on whether or not they may have a diminished role in that week's game. You'll have to keep a closer eye on questionable players, because even if they play, they might not do much. A lot of times it comes down to right before game time to find out if these players will play. If you can, check the news right up to the point the games start and adjust your lineup accordingly.

5. Look at the matchups - While you'll want to put your stud players in your starting lineup every week, there may come a time where putting one of your bench players with a good matchup in for one of your regulars who has a tough matchup.

Best Fantasy Football Playoff Tips

If you do your homework throughout the regular fantasy season, and don't have too much bad luck, there's a good chance your team will make the playoffs. Once your team gets there, it's a whole new ball game. If you lose a week in the playoffs, you're done. These 2 or 3 weeks are the most important of the season. Here are the best fantasy football playoff tips.

1. Be aware of players who are on teams that have already clinched the playoffs - If you have players on teams that have already clinched a playoff spot, there's a chance they'll get rested (either playing part of the game or sitting out altogether) for the last game, or games, of the season. This is particularly true of teams who've already clinched their seeding in the playoffs. Most fantasy football leagues have their championship game during week 16 of the NFL season because most playoff bound teams are resting their stars in week 17. However, even in week 16 there's the possibility that if a team has clinched the best record in their conference, they'll rest their stars (the Indianapolis Colts are infamous for this).

2. Don't worry about dropping or benching big names if they are hurt or are getting rested - If you want to win in the playoffs, you can't be afraid to drop or bench your usual starters if they are hurt or getting rested. You need to win at all costs, and sticking with players who are almost guaranteed not to come close to their usual production can send you packing. Instead, put in players who will play and have favorable matchups.

3. Try to find that unexpected playoff hero - It seems that almost every year there are some players that come out of nowhere to finish the NFL regular season with some huge games. This usually comes in the form of a backup who gets a shot towards the end of the season. If you notice a player who has the potential to do this, you should at least try to pick him up, whether you decide to play him or not.

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    • Venus Rivera profile image

      Daisy Rivera 

      3 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Thank you, Rob for your tips. I'm a huge football fan and I just started to play fantasy football this year. This article is good for beginners and season players alike.

    • CJoseph profile image


      6 years ago from Oregon

      Good tips - it can be pretty hard to figure all this out for a beginner.

    • profile image

      Sam Hendricks 

      7 years ago

      One other huge advantage of auction leagues is that your draft spot does not matter. Everyone can bid on any of the players and the team that bids the most wins that player. As opposed to a traditional (snake) draft where if you have a later draft spot you do not have any chance at an Arian Foster or Adrian Peterson. I think auction drafts are the fairest. The motto is "Anyone you want, just not everyone you want".

      Sam Hendricks, author Fantasy Football Guidebooks and Fantasy Footbal Basics

      I am a big fan of the ESPN auction leagues. Another


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