and Ian Millman
Last Updated: Jul 14, 2010 7:38 PM
10 Commandments for Winning at Fantasy Football
This is the tenth in a series of articles geared toward winning at fantasy football. To find more content on useful ways you can win your league, click here
10th Commandment - Thou Shall Start Your Studs
To win a Fantasy Football Championship you need to do several things:
1 – Have a solid draft
As I've said before you can't winyour league at the draft but you can lose it there. We are just looking to have a solid draft. Get a core of Studs, build around them with some depth and grab a bunch of our sleepers hoping half of them work out. “Championships aren't won at the draft, but they are born there”.
2 – Stay very active on the waiver wire
The Waiver Wire is where I believe every one of my fantasy titles have been one. Sometimes it's just been 1 key pickup, others it's grabbing guys early that pan out later, or even just getting a good bye week Defense to steal a win. The plan is to STAY ACTIVE every week trying to improve your team.
3 – Start the RIGHT guys each week
The single biggest determinant of a win each week is typically who you start. This is where the FFCPI (Fantasy Football Champs Performance Index) comes in. It's our proprietary algorithm that we came up with that tells our users which players have the best odds of putting up the best stats each week. It's essentially a weekly cheatsheet for you to follow. The FFCPI takes many variables into account and then assigns a number from 1-99 (99 meaning that player has the highest probability of having a good game that week). We will go into the FFCPI in much more depth as the season nears, but for now we want to focus on the 10th Commandment – START YOUR STUDS.
This may seem like a no-brainer, and it is week 1, but inevitably there will come a time when one of your Studs is in a slump. It could strike at any time and sometimes it's due to a minor injury. The NFL is a big boy league and everyone gets hurt. We monitor all of this and take it into account in the FFCPI.
But there are other times when there don't appear to be any real injuries, however your top guys just aren't playing great. Or maybe they are going against a very tough defense and you are considering benching them. We have a rule here at FFChamps, “Always Start Your Studs."
There will be times when even the FFCPI (which we never advise going against) has one of your “solid” players ranked higher for the week than one of your “Studs”. Even in this scenario we advocate starting your Studs.
How will you know who we consider to be your Studs? Easy, we'll tell you! As long as you enter your roster into our “My Teams” application, our site will highlight your players and your Studs will be highlighted as well. Within the FFCPI section of FFChamps.com, we also post our “Studs” and “Borderline Studs” at each position, and update them regularly. So we'll tell you exactly who we think are your Studs and who should be in your lineup week in and week out.
The important thing to remember here is not to out-think yourself. We rely heavily on the FFCPI to help us decide on our starting team, however we are really only doing that for our “toss up” decisions. Such as if we waited on QB and have 2 decent guys that haven't broken out yet. Or if we have 2 Stud WRs and need to decide from the rest of our roster who our 3rd WR that week will be. Or for your Flex starter in a given week, but the key is to NEVER bench a Stud, even if he isn't playing great right now. These guys will always come around and you need to keep them in your lineup to get their stats so you don't miss their big games.
Injuries will change this rule and if you have a banged up Stud and a solid backup (you really should if you stuck to your tiers at the draft), then perhaps you can sit him that week -- but over the course of the season, you'd be much better served by starting your Studs every week and only worrying about the fringe players for your starter decisions.