Fantasy Football: Three regular season tips beginners should know


Nick Marotta, Asst. Sports Editor

The 2016 fantasy football season will begin tonight when the Denver Broncos take on the Carolina Panthers. Although most fantasy drafts have been done for weeks, the real bulk of the season can begin now.

While the draft is an important part of building a successful fantasy team, there are many ways to further beef up a roster.

Even though the season starts tonight, here are three quick tips for anyone looking to make a splash in their fantasy league during the regular season.

  1. Keep an eye on the waiver wire. Teams are built in the draft, but they are improved through trades and waivers. The easiest way to improve your team without giving up valuable assets is through the waiver wire. Every Wednesday, make sure you look at the available free agents in your league. You may be able to pick up a tight end, kicker, or defense/special teams (D/ST) with a more favorable matchup than your current one for that week.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should drop Rob Gronkowski for a different tight end. Last season, a few picks from this year’s first few rounds were waiver wire pickups. For example, David Johnson was a first-round pick in many leagues this year, which shows his worth to fantasy owners. This just goes to show that keeping an eye on the free agent list is one of the most important things a fantasy owner can do.

  1. You’re not out to rob anyone in trades. The other way to improve your fantasy team is through a trade. Most high-impact players are not on the free-agent list, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get your hands on them. In both professional sports and fantasy football, there is a misconception that there has to be a “winner” and a “loser” when a trade is made.

It’s always nice to be able to get a top tier player for a player of lesser value, but this should not be your goal in every trade. The most important thing with trading is making sure both teams are getting something of equal value. If you’re in the market for a wide receiver and you have a solid roster of running backs, look for a team that has a solid roster of wide receivers, but is not great at the running back position. This way, each team will be improving their roster with a positive trade.

  1. Know your league’s format, and how this affects your players. Make sure you know how your league scores points. It is important in both the draft and the game itself to know if your league does standard scoring, or has other rules like Points Per Reception (PPR.)

In PPR leagues, a running back who catches a lot of passes will be of greater value than a running back who gets a lot of rushing yards. Tight ends also increase in value in PPR leagues, as well as wide receivers. Quarterbacks will increase and decrease in value depending on how many points they score throwing for touchdowns as well. Some leagues award bonus points to players who get over 100 yards receiving or rushing in a game. Other leagues will have teams start multiple quarterbacks and only one running back. Know your league.

Knowing your league’s rules will make your draft, waiver pickups and trades all more effective.

Although these tips are mostly for those who are new to fantasy football, they are important for players of all skill levels. Good luck to all of the fantasy owners this season.

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