The best way to prepare for a fantasy draft is to participate in mock drafts. Mock drafting may seem like a hassle, but it can be a quick and easy way to prepare yourself for the upcoming fantasy football season. Whether this is your first season playing fantasy football or your 20th, mock drafting is an essential part of preparing for the season.
Importance of Mock Drafts
Mock drafts are vital to your success on draft day when playing fantasy football. While you cannot win your league on draft day, a lack of preparation can doom you to a season you would rather forget. The most significant piece of information you can glean from a mock draft is a player’s average draft position (ADP). While you can find ADP lists at any fantasy football site, a mock draft can show you in real-time where certain players are picked and how soon you need to react if you want a particular player.
If someone you are very interested in drafting goes with pick 90 on average, you might want to target that player around pick 80. You may need to reach one round early to draft that player if you must have them on your team.
By taking part in multiple mock drafts, these types of scenarios will become second nature to you. The more mock drafts you do, the more familiar you will become with when you need to target certain players. Once you have taken part in more than a few mocks, you will start to sharpen your draft strategy. Each mock that goes by, your strategy becomes more familiar, and you will soon have many different ways to attack the draft.
Don’t Panic On Draft Day
Fantasy football drafts are almost always “snake” drafts, which means that the player who picks last in the first round picks first in the second round. If you have the first overall pick, you will be waiting a long time before you make your second selection. Due to the nature of the draft, there will be many occasions where the player you are targeting gets picked right before you. When this happens, most people panic and have no idea what player to take next. But if you have been dutifully mock drafting, you will be prepared for any situation.
Mock From Your Draft Slot
If you know your draft position in advance of the draft, mock drafting is a gift from the fantasy football gods. Regardless of your draft position, participating in mocks gives you a sense of where players are being picked and what round you have to target the guys that you want. But with your draft position locked in, your mock becomes much more predictable.
To be fair, every draft is unique and unpredictable. There is no way to anticipate precisely when certain players will go, other than those at the very top. But many people will roughly draft players in the order that their fantasy provider ranks them.
No matter how much research you do, there are always likely to be players that you undervalued or haven’t heard of. By doing mock drafts, you become familiar with players at all phases of the draft. If you see your mock draft service repeatedly suggesting a certain player, and see that the experts agree, you might want to take a closer look at that player.
Sniff Out Busts
There are multiple ways to sniff out busts during mock drafts. Some players you will notice continue to fall round after round, and it becomes clear that the market is low on that player this year. Every player is draftable at a certain point, so sometimes finding these players that are likely to fall can provide you with a buy-low opportunity later on.
Other times, there will be a certain player that causes you to scratch your head when they get drafted. If players are getting drafted well above where you would be comfortable taking them, you have yourself a personal bust list. And being aware of who you believe is overvalued can be helpful for quick decision making during drafts.
You should also be taking a closer look at those players to confirm or deny your initial bias. You might be missing something, or you could further cement your opinion on the player.
Don’t Look Bad in Front of Your Friends
Those that are serious about competing in fantasy football will do tens, if not hundreds of mock drafts in preparation for the new season. However, you don’t have to be that crazy about fantasy football to participate in mocks. If nothing else, hop into a mock draft or two the day of your draft to get an idea of where players go and how you’d like to respond.
No one likes it when someone waits until the last second to make their selection, only to have it auto picked as the time runs out. Being able to make your picks in a timely manner is not only good for selecting your fantasy team, but it also keeps you from looking bad in front of your friends.