12 team Yahoo! fantasy league
Had a late night last night, but drafted what I thought to be a solid football team in a 12 team league.
Received pick #6 so I knew I'd have a lesser RB to take, or Tom Brady or Randy Moss. Brady actually went #3 to one of his big fans, so that jumbled things a bit. Brian Westbrook and Joe Addai followed so I had to grab Steven Jackson. Despite his holdout and potential issues in St Louis (O Line, Marc Bulger staying healthy) it would have been unwise to let this type of RB go by, as I consider there to be a decent drop-off after those first 5 running backs. Randy Moss was enticing because he's one my favorites and I knew he'd be gone by the time I picked next at pick 18, but if I did that I knew I'd have to grab a few running backs immediately afterwards.
Two picks after Jackson, Peyton Manning was chosen. So I assumed that the guy I've been targetting in drafts, Tony Romo, would be snatched up soon (or at least before my 2nd round pick). However Romo was left so I gladly picked him up. The year prior I had Donovan McNabb and made a note of it to come away with Brady, Romo or Brees in this draft, at the right point in the draft for their value of course. I think with pick #19 for Tony Romo that I did that. Fantasy Football QB Draft Ranking List
Another basic strategy I have been employing is grabbing Thomas Jones in the 3rd or 4th round of leagues, with the hope that Alan Faneca and the other offensive additions will allow Jones some more room to run (and like Willie Parker, it was a fluke he did not score more than he did in 2007). Jones was still out there at pick 29 but so were a few elite receivers, notably Marques Colston and TJ Houshmandzadeh. It was a toss-up really and I had no scientific method for choosing one over the other, so I just grabbed Houshmandzadeh who continually gets a large amount of targets (not that Colston doesn't though). On the way back Thomas Jones was still around so I grabbed him.
Round 5 I took Roddy White but really struggled with it. Not many other quality receivers were around, but Brandon Marshall was and I probably should have taken him despite the suspension. Still, I am happy with White as my #2 receiver in a 12 team league. 1200 and 5 touchdowns last year, you would think he'll grab more than 5 touchdowns with the looks he is going to get, but the 1200 yards may not be reached. It is hard to know what will happen with the Atlanta Falcons offense, since they brought in Michael Turner in the offseason but were passing a ton to end 2007 with Chris Redman and the aforementioned White.
Round 6 was approaching and I took Jason Witten with pick # 67. Kellen Winslow, Antonio Gates and Jeremy Shockey (!) were all taken ahead of Witten. Now I don't think Witten will duplicate his 2007 numbers, but with his amount of looks last year and the efficiency of the Cowboys offense, I expect him to come close. Pairing him with Romo will make it extra nice when I see a Romo to Witten TD.
After this is was time to fill out my third receiver and my bench slots, then ending the draft with a kicker and defense. Joey Galloway was my 7th round pick. Another personal favorite of mine, he is certainly inconsistent but I love those deep TD's. Starting the season off against a foe he burns regularly is nice as well (New Orleans). Rashard Mendenhall followed Galloway in Round 8. I'm not a big fan, but there is the potential he gets carries in Pittsburgh. Not a bad handcuff to have and he's generally drafted earlier than that. Nate Burleson at pick 102 and round 9 was nice, especially since the first month there will be no Deion Branch and Bobby Engram. Maybe he'll return a few special teams TD's too, that'd be nice.
Round 10 pick 115 it was time to take Ricky Williams. Not sure why he was around at this time with all the uncertainty surrounding Ronnie Brown. I followed round 11 with Ted Ginn Jr, another Dolphin. It sounds like he's been having a decent summer and he was worth a flier as a #3 receiving candidate along with Galloway and Burleson.
Decided to take a kicker in Round 12 even though there were 3 more picks left. I wanted to get Neil Rackers since our Yahoo fantasy league is big on long field goals, and Rackers like to attempt them. Plus I like that he plays in Arizona come December, fantasy playoff time, as opposed to playing in cold weather or with extreme wind. Still, it's a kicker. Round 13 I grabbed Chris Johnson of Tennessee. He seems like an interesting option as well with incumbent Lendale White being injury prone and a little questionable in general. I closed out the draft in round 14 with Isaac Bruce and Oakland Raiders defense. I doubt I'll play Bruce but with Martz there I bet he gets a lot of looks. Oakland was the choice because of a decent 1st week matchup at home against Denver. I'll probably just play defense week-to-week, I'm more comfortable with that than having to put in the same defense every week even if they have a tough offense they are going against.
QB Tony Romo
WR TJ Houshmandzadeh
WR Roddy White
WR Joey Galloway
RB Steven Jackson
RB Thomas Jones
TE Jason Witten
K Neil Rackers
Def Oakland Raiders
Bench Rashard Mendenhall RB
Bench Nate Burleson WR
Bench Ricky Williams RB
Bench Ted Ginn Jr WR
Bench Chris Johnson RB
Bench Isaac Bruce WR