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Fantasy Football Tips From a Woman

Updated on September 13, 2013

Yes, I am a rare woman who loves sports, especially football and basketball. I come from a sports-loving family. My first childhood years were spent in Texas. My brother played high school football and my mother drug me to watch his games. We had one TV in the house, therefore on Sunday afternoons I had no choice but to watch the Dallas Cowboys with Tom Landry, Don Meridith and Bob Hayes. After moving to Illinois, I became a cheerleader in grades 7- 12. I cheered for both football and basketball. So my philosophy was why cheer for a sport when you don't know what's happening on the field or court? I have angered men when I've proven that I have more knowledge about football than they do. However, most men loved the fact that I could "hang' with them. I have even coached other women on the rules of the game so they can enjoy it with their husbands.

Five years ago, I joined the ranks of many others who play Fantasy Football (FF). It has become so popular now. Basically, you have a team of real players who score points based on what they do in their "real" football game. You create leagues, have a draft, have playoffs and a Superbowl just like real life. You are a team owner. I fell in love with it. For 2013, I'm managing 3 different FF teams. My team name- K's Jays. Up until nowI have won 3 championships.

My Fantasy Football Tips

1. Do not have an allegiance to your favorite NFL team players unless they can get you some consistent high points. The first year I played, I picked a bunch of Chicago Bears who were not good fantasy-scoring players just because I am a Chicago Bears fan. In FF, you have to select players who will perform and score fantasy points. You can't be sentimental. If they don't produce, cut them!

2. Strong running backs are great but without good wide receivers, you can forget it. It took me a few years to realize the importance of strong wide receivers. I had the mentality that running backs usually carry the ball a lot more than the wide receivers will receive. However, a good wide receiver will pick up chunks of yardage a lot quicker. Usually in FF, every 10 yards made earns you a fantasy point. So one 30 yard catch = 3 fantasy points versus 5 carries for 30 yards. The average yard per carry is 6 yards, which is an awesome NFL stat. But it took five plays for the running back vs. one play for the wide receiver to get the 3 fantasy points.

3. You can still win big with mediocre quarterbacks. If you can't draft Aaron Rogers or Drew Brees, you can do well with Eli Manning, Tony Romo. On two of my teams I have Colin Kaepernick. In week one, he scored 30 fantasy points! Keep it up Colin!. Any average quarterback should be able to connect with his best receiver to score points. But I prefer to have a higher-ranked wide receiver over a higher-ranked quarterback any day.

4. Do not have more than one kicker and one defense on your team at any time. Normally they don't score high points, so why waste your bench roster with back-ups. When they are on bye, go and pick up a replacement off the waiver wire. If you want them back after the bye week, chances are they will be there. Use extra bench spots for quality running backs and wide receivers. You will need them during the bye weeks and to cover injuries.

5. Stay aware of injuries. You need to know what's going on with your players. If someone has a nagging injury and is a game time decision, do you go with him or start a substitute? If you're not aware of the injury and he's a no go, and you don't have time to change your roster before game time, just accept your fat 0 for that spot. You need every point you can get so stay on it.

6. Review the rankings weekly. Read the "Start em Sit em" columns just to get an understanding of the matchups. But at the end of the day, use your gut.

7. Always try to better your team and manage it. I've played in leagues where other teams never make a trade or pickup on waiver wire or make a roster change. I admit, I'm not a big trade person. But I will drop non-producers and pick up players off the waiver in a minute. Constantly strive to make your team better. Dump dead weight! Be aware of your upcoming bye weeks. Manage your team!

This is the first year I joined a league who draft defensive players. It is challenging because unless they are big names like Clay Matthews, you don't know them well. It will be interesting to see how it plays out. I'll give you an update later.

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