Guest Post: 5 basic rules to keep in mind while playing Fantasy Football

Guest Post: 5 basic rules to keep in mind while playing Fantasy Football

When I was first asked to write a ‘beginner’s guide to fantasy football’, I wondered where I should start. There are so many variables when it comes to choosing players, managing your team and knowing who to add or drop on a weekly basis. So I’ve decided to come up with five steadfast rules to live by when it comes to playing fantasy football.
 

 

  1. Know your league scoring rules.

I was in a league in 2009 that was PPR (points per reception, one point for every catch a player makes), and Wes Welker was a top five pick in our draft. He ended up being the highest scoring player in the league as he finished the year with 123 catches. I didn’t realize the type of scoring that the league had implemented, and would have won my league if I had been paying closer attention.
 

 

  1. The Raiders ruin everything they touch.

Do you think Darren McFadden is finally going to have that breakout season? Is Maurice Jones-Drew is going to be successful after getting out of the hellhole that is the Jacksonville Jaguars offense? Will Derek Carr finally be the answer at quarterback?
These players play for the Raiders, and Oakland is the equivalent to your young nephew with Cheeto dust caked fingers using your favorite clothes as napkins. Oakland ruins anything and anyone of value in fantasy football, much like they did to Randy Moss years ago. Use your player selections more wisely.

 

  1. Do not collect players from your favorite team.

A guy in my fantasy football league is a huge Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan and recently traded superstar Dez Bryant just so he could secure mediocre Bucs running back Doug Martin. The Buccaneers are trash, and this is a classic fantasy football mistake. Unless your favorite team is the Denver Broncos (which can technically be categorized as a points factory), do not load up on players just because they play for your favorite team. It will be a quick trip to the bottom of the standings for your team.

 

  1. Monitor the waiver wire closely.

The amount of attention that you pay the free agents in your league could be the difference between first place and last place. I’ve won a league championship (or two) where I was carried by some no name player, like Alfred Morris did for me back in 2012. Keep an eye out for players that have been playing well as of late and they might be the key to winning consistently.

 

  1. Know the opposition.

This is VERY important. The team that your players are going up against could mean the difference between having a player get either one or 20 fantasy points in any given week. For example, if you have a running back playing against the Seattle Seahawks, that running back needs to be a game changer like LeSean McCoy or Jamaal Charles. Seattle is stout on defense and can wreck any chance of your players playing well. Make sure to know who your players are playing against and how good the opponent is on defense. It could save or kill you.
While these rules can’t guarantee you in the championship every year, they will at least provide you a little saving grace when you find yourself stuck with an injury-prone Carson Palmer, a stagnant Steven Jackson, and a weed-smoking Josh Gordon. Follow these rules, and with a little luck, you will at least find yourself in your playoffs.

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Brian Stone is a senior journalism major from St. Mary’s, Ga. He plans to graduate in Fall 2014, and plans to pursue a career in the field of journalism.