“Why Didn’t I Do It? Fantasy Football.”


Yes, it’s the age-old excuse. I didn’t do my work because of fantasy football. In this case, it wasn’t making a sale or formatting an excel spreadsheet in an office cubicle. In this particular case, this curious case of a Ravens blogger, my work was to fantasize about football by guessing the Ravens’ starters on defense this season.

So yeah, my fantasy was ruined by my fantasy. Or is it the other way around?

Wanna find out how my draft went? Oh, you don’t? Well read past the jump anyways.

I’m in a league with fellow staff writer Casey Durkin. Our draft ended in a flurry of explosions and ice storms, so we’ll give you some tips about how to draft. First, we’ll share our teams. My team turned out as follows:

  • QB: Philip Rivers
  • QB: Vince Young
  • RB: Michael Turner
  • RB: Jonathan Stewart
  • RB: Darren Sproles
  • RB: Willis McGahee
  • WR: Percy Harvin
  • WR: DeSean Jackson
  • WR: Braylon Edwards
  • WR: Josh Cribbs
  • WR: Vincent Jackson (yes, I know about the issues)
  • TE: Dallas Clark
  • TE: Heath Miller
  • K: Rob Bironas
  • K: John Kasay
  • D/ST: Green Bay Packers
  • D/ST: New York Giants

Casey’s Team:

  • QB: Aaron Rodgers
  • QB: Alex Smith
  • RB: Rashard Mendenhall
  • RB: Cadillac Williams
  • RB: Thomas Jones
  • RB: Fred Jackson
  • RB: Bernard Scott
  • WR: Wes Welker
  • WR: Marques Colston
  • WR: Pierre Garcon
  • WR: Michael Crabtree
  • WR: Malcolm Floyd
  • TE: Visanthe Shiancoe
  • TE: John Carlson
  • K: Neil Rackers
  • D/ST: Cleveland Browns

Now, a few tips:

  • Have a list of your targets at each position before the draft starts. It can be 3-deep, 5-deep or you can throw all conservativeness to the wind and list your top 20 at each position. Rank them, and use that as your reference. Shy away from the default rankings, as they create indecision and don’t help you get the specific team that you want.
  • Think about the positional layout. I drafted my starting lineup before any bench players, that’s my style. Casey did the opposite, adding extra talent at positions like running back and quarterback before picking up even one tight end. It’s a choice between the two methods, but make sure you don’t just stick to your big board to the death and end up with running backs as your first six selections.
  • If you’re a person who likes to work out trades during the draft, I salute you. I think it’s one of the best parts of the draft experience. It’s fun, adds suspense to the draft, and really helps you think about how you want to plan out your team. It makes me feel like an architect of sorts. My advice with this is to not get too caught up on one guy. Chances are you’ll try to be working something out, and not focus on the draft as much as you should. Soon enough, your pick comes up and your guy’s still on the board. You take him, but you’re unprepared for your future picks.
  • The draft window is never enough information if you want to have success. Use Pro Football Reference. It’s simple, efficient, and the best way to get stats. It can show you a player’s track record, game logs, all types of great stuff. When you’re debating between two players, it’s a great tool to use.
  • My last word of advice is one of my most important. THINK ABOUT THE BYE WEEKS. If both of your quarterbacks have Week 8 byes, you’ve gotta drop one, and you probably won’t get that one back. If you pull off a great first two rounds and get two stud backs like Maurice Jones-Drew and Steven Jackson, and then find out that they both have byes in Week 9 (which they do), you’ve just seen your first two rounds go from amazing to above-average, because you’re losing the bulk of your team’s points for a week.

So what’s the verdict? Are Casey and I the best fantasy football players you’ve ever seen? Are we traitors and jerkwads because we drafted Squealers onto our teams? Let us know your thoughts and feel free to add your own teams in the comments section, or get in touch with us through email or Twitter.