Weekly Fantasy Football Strategy

Tim Fuller USATODAY Sports

Tim Fuller USATODAY Sports

Weekly fantasy football and all daily/weekly fantasy sporting options in general have become all of the rage among dedicated gamers and are growing at an exponential rate. I’m sure you’ve heard the ads about the big winners, and I am here to help you out a bit if you’re new to the weekly gaming circuit.

Through experience, I have learned that you are better off identifying your “sleeper players” before you even look at the salary options of the big name players. More or less, I’m a fan of building your fantasy lineup from the bottom up. You can always find studs that you are comfortable with, so I’d rather take a flier on cheap players I like and piece together the elite options as opposed to taking my favorite All-Stars and just filling out my roster with cheap options that keep me under the cap.

I’ve found that as a result of this pass-first era in the NFL, the wide receiver position as a whole is great place to target sleeper players. There are a ton of passes being thrown by offenses on a weekly basis, and while many defenses have one shutdown player, few can defend three- and four-receiver sets effectively.

After evaluating matchups and injury situations, I typically find one (if not two) pass catchers that I really like. A player like Terrance Williams (sans Miles Austin), Kris Durham (sans Calvin Johnson)  or T.Y. Hilton (Richard Sherman was shadowing Reggie Wayne) were under-priced the last few weeks and allowed savvy fantasy players to cash in.

I play the matchup game for defenses as well because of the volatility of fantasy points from week to week. I’d much prefer a decent defensive unit with a plus matchup than a plus defense with a decent matchup.

After the cheap options are accounted for, I’m spending big on my quarterback(s) and running backs. These positions offer the most consistency and are typically the higher-scoring positions. I try to not over think this part, as I have the cap space and don’t need to be as frugal as I was at wide receiver/defense.

For the most part, I’m trusting talent and using matchup as a tie-breaker. There are a few exceptions every week (I want no part of Aaron Rodgers and his high price tag this weekend), but for the most part I’m taking the big-time playmakers who are assured of a great workload (Matthew Stafford and Adrian Peterson find their way onto most of my rosters because of their consistent fantasy producing opportunities).

Every weekly fantasy league is a bit different, so adjust this basic strategy for your specific league’s scoring rules and roster requirements. That being said, here is a lineup I have penciled in for a two-quarterback and two-flex Week 7 game.

QB – Nick Foles, Tony Romo
RB – Adrian Peterson, LeSean McCoy
WR – Donnie Avery, Jacoby Jones
TE – Rob Gronkowski
Flex – Eddie Lacy, Matt Forte
D/ST – New York Giants

Fantasy questions about any sport? I’m always around @unSOPable23

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