Talking Dynasty Fantasy Football


Draftmasters Leagues This Weekend

Any draftmaster enthusiasts out there?

While I spend almost all of my fantasy football study time on dynasty these days, I really enjoy playing in draftmaster leagues (i.e., best ball scoring format – draft it and forget it leagues). Aside from the low-maintenance aspects of these leagues (no setting lineups, no trades) which allow me to play in the first place, I really like the strategy involved in constructing a team. I especially like that scrubs like Jake Delhomme can actually make a difference in this format (ok, maybe thats a bad example), so every pick counts. I have three draftmaster leagues to draft starting this weekend (slow draft as in all my leagues) so I thought I would mix things up by throwing in some redraft talk and covering my picks in the three leagues here simultaneously (in subsequent entries).

Here are the leagues:

JP High Stakes Draftmasters (WCOFF style): After a year hiatus in this league, I am back for another shot against a tough group of drafters. This is the draftmasters league I would most like to win this year (as the highest stakes draftmaster league I am entering). The name is a bit of a misnomer (since it is only a $210 entry league), but that is still plenty high stakes for me with the winner taking down a cool $1,210. I drew the #1 pick, so I definitely can’t complain there (other than to sulk about why I couldn’t have gotten the #1 pick in one of my high stakes dynasty leagues instead, where the premium pick is so much more important). I am probably going to go Adrian Peterson or MJD at #1. Then again, I really can’t go wrong with CJ3 or Ray Rice either...thinking.

JP Draftmasters II (WCOFF style): I have some strange mojo going on in this league, winning the league in 2007, 2008 and 2009 (too bad it’s not a high stakes league) – a four-peat would be ridiculous! I drew the #6 pick which I like a lot (Andre Johnson or Frank Gore, whichever is still there), so a nice start.

JP Draftmasters III (WCOFF style): I happen to be the defending champ in this league as well (after hitting the lottery on Chris Johnson, Ray Rice, Dallas Clark and Steve Smith (NYG) last year) and drew the #2 pick this year (another great slot). Again, why, oh why couldn’t I have gotten this pick in one of the FFPC dynasty leagues instead?

To prepare for these leagues, I thought it would be fun and helpful to take a closer look at the draftmaster teams I’ve already drafted this year. I may need to make some adjustments in strategy for the upcoming drafts.

Here are the leagues I have drafted so far this year:

FFPC 77s Slow Draft #12 (draftmasters):

Despite trolling the FFPC message boards since its inception and really liking what I saw, I played my first FFPC event just last year (a 77s slow draft league). The 77s provide a nice payout (particularly for a low entry league) in the form of credits towards other FFPC events. I did not then (and still do not now) have enough confidence in my redraft skills to take a shot at the main event, particularly with finances now being tighter than what they once were. I entered last year’s 77 in hopes that I could win some credits towards a 2010 main event entry and get in that way. Unfortunately, looking back, my draft was a disaster, and I got lucky to even finish in 5th (175 pts out of first!).

A year later, I am still having some difficulty figuring out how best to attack the FFPC scoring format (as opposed to the WCOFF format) as the TE scoring and the dual flex make a huge difference in strategy, even in a draftmasters (or from my perspective, especially in draftmasters). This year, I have drafted three 77s, but I’m not sure I did that well in any one of the drafts. The level of competition in these 77s was VERY high, and I found that I was not easily able to execute my game plan.

Here is my team (in order of where I drafted each player) from the 9 hole:

1.09 Randy Moss
2.04 Dallas Clark
3.09 Pierre Thomas
4.04 LeSean McCoy
5.09 Mike Sims-Walker
6.04 Pierre Garcon
7.09 Brandon Jacobs
8.04 Darren McFadden
9.09 Montario Hardesty
10.04 Chad Henne
11.09 Matt Cassel
12.04 Mark Sanchez
13.09 Demaryius Thomas
14.04 Devin Thomas
15.09 Ben Watson
16.04 Mike Williams (TBB)
17.09 Miami Dolphins
18.04 Arrelious Benn
19.09 Shayne Graham
20.04 Arizona Cardinals
21.09 John Kasay
22.04 Washington Redskins
23.09 Atlanta Falcons
24.04 Cleveland Browns
25.09 Ed Dickson
26.04 Dennis Pitta

The team, by position:

QB: Henne, Cassel, Sanchez: This is obviously a weak point for this team. I can only hope that my strengths elsewhere can make up for this deficiency (and I don’t think they do). The only bright spot is that I have 3 starting QBs. If all three players can stay healthy and can remain the starter on their team, I might be able to get enough points here to be competitive.

RB: Thomas, McCoy, Jacobs, McFadden, Hardesty: A pretty good draftmasters group from which to net two starters per week. Unfortunately, I may need three to come out of this group each week in order to do some damage, and the prospects of that are not looking all that great. With a weakness already at QB, I could be in trouble here. I REALLY need McFadden to break out to have any shot at winning this league.

WR: Moss, Sims-Walker, Garcon, DMThomas, DevThomas, Williams (TBB), Benn: This group is far from inspiring. Looks like Devin Thomas is now a wasted pick. Three starters per week is doable with this group in most weeks, but I needed more to make up for the lack of a consistent 3rd or 4th RB. I am going to need some serious luck to win this league. Mike Williams and Demaryius Thomas are going to need to post solid numbers for that to happen.

TE: Clark, Watson, Dickson, Pitta: Solid here with Clark (very solid), but I’m going to need the rookies to produce some in order to help to overcome the lack of depth at the second flex position.
DEF: Dolphins, Cardinals, Redskins, Falcons, Browns: I do like my defenses in great quantities and this set has two or three more than every other team in the league. Late in the draft, I have more confidence that a defense can contribute its 15 points to a team versus a position player taken that late.

PK: Graham, Kasay: Ouch. Is Kasay even in the league still?

Overall: This was not a great drafting effort – say goodbye to those $77. Hopefully I can do better this weekend. I’ll need to focus a little more on QB (which could mean grabbing the #1 a little earlier or just grabbing one more crappy one later).

FFPC 77s Slow Draft #13 (draftmasters):

Lets try this again, hopefully with better results this time.

My team (in order of where I drafted each player) from the 10 hole:

1.10 Randy Moss - WR
2.03 Steven Jackson - RB
3.10 Chris Wells – RB
4.03 Tony Gonzalez – TE
5.10 Pierre Garcon – WR
6.03 Cedric Benson – RB
7.10 CJ Spiller – RB
8.03 Devin Hester – WR
9.10 Julian Edelman – WR
10.03 Matthew Stafford – QB
11.10 Todd Heap – TE
12.03 Matt Cassel – QB
13.10 Kyle Orton – QB
14.03 Chris Chambers – WR
15.10 Ben Watson – TE
16.03 Josh Cribbs – WR
17.10 Bo Scaife – TE
18.03 Matt Moore – QB
19.10 NY Giants – DEF
20.03 Lawrence Tynes – PK
21.10 David Buehler – PK
22.03 Tennessee Titans – DEF
23.10 Buffalo Bills – DEF
24.03 Carolina Panthers – DEF
25.10 Earl Bennett – WR
26.03 Josh Scobee – PK

The team, by position:

QB: Stafford, Cassel, Orton, Moore: No superstars, and a similar group to the team above, but the fact that I have four QBs instead of three makes me much more comfortable with this set of QBs. Decent group, particularly if Orton can keep the starters role for an extended period.
Right or wrong, my thinking this year is that taken together, the 4 QBs I take in the later rounds can equal one elite QB, while I can’t say the same for RB or WR taken that late. So, I will probably continue to load up on RBs and WRs in the earlier rounds of the upcoming drafts as well and take QBs in bunches later.

RB: SJax, Wells, Benson, Spiller: Went with quality here over quantity. I feel very comfortable relying on 2 starters from this group each week, and fairly comfortable that I should get 3 most weeks. Spiller is the wildcard that could produce point spikes throughout the season (which is what you usually want out of a RB4 in draftmasters).

WR: Moss, Garcon, Hester, Edelman, Chambers, Cribbs, Bennett: This group will be very good at 2 starters and decent at 3. On a good week, this group may be able to produce 4.

TE: Gonzalez, Heap, Watson, Scaife: I like this group as well. Gonzo will be the regular of course, but I believe Heap, Watson and Scaife collectively should be able to help out the RBs and WRs in producing a flex starter at times during the year.

DEF: Giants, Titans, Bills, Panthers: Only 4 defenses this time, but that’s still one or two more than every other team in the league.

PK: Tynes, Buehler, Scobee: Even with Buehler on shaky ground, I still like this group a lot better than Graham/Kasay above.

Overall: I like this team A LOT more than the prior one. The differences are subtle, but I think waiting to take a TE until the 4th helped out quite a bit on the quality of the RBs. I was helped out by getting Benson in the 6th round as well due to the negative news about him that came out right around the time of this draft. I might have a shot with this team.

FFPC 77s Slow Draft #15 (draftmasters) from the 7 hole:

1.7 Larry Fitzgerald
2.6 Brandon Marshall
3.7 Chris Wells
4.6 Anquan Boldin
5.7 Felix Jones
6.6 Zach Miller
7.7 Brandon Jacobs
8.6 Dustin Keller
9.7 Tim Hightower
10.6 Ben Tate
11.7 Matt Cassel (again?)
12.6 Julian Edelman
13.7 Mark Sanchez
14.6 Matt Hasselbeck
15.7 Shawn Nelson
16.6 Brandon Pettigrew
17.7 Marcedes Lewis
18.6 Jake Delhomme
19.7 Miami Dolphins
20.6 Lawrence Tynes
21.7 Rob Gronkowski
22.6 Buffalo Bills
23.7 Jacksonville Jaguars
24.6 Josh Scobee
25.7 Donte Stallworth
26.6 St Louis Rams

QB: Cassel, Sanchez, Hasselbeck, Delhomme: See a pattern here? I’ve paired up Cassel and Sanchez again. I figure with the quality WRs on the Jets, Sanchez will have a few big games this year which will really help in this format. This again is a crappy group as individuals, but together (assuming Delhomme remains the starter, not exactly a safe assumption), this group should be very good.

RB: Wells, F Jones, Jacobs, Hightower, Tate: This time, I am only looking for 2 good options each week from this group and could get 3 some weeks. This team’s strength will be at WR.

WR: Fitz, Marshall, Boldin, Edelman, Stallworth: Love the three picks in the first four rounds. I will need 3 to start each week, and if Edelman gets significant playing time, 3 should not be an issue. Only 5 WRs, but 3 are excellent and one (Edelman) is pretty good. Quality here over quantity.

TE: Z Miller, Keller, Nelson, Pettigrew, M. Lewis, Gronkowski. Got the quantity here, and at 1.5 PPR, thats a good thing. I am expecting to have one flex covered by this group most weeks.

DEF: Dolphins, Bills, Jaguars, Rams: With four defenses, I should have an edge here over most teams.

PK: Tynes, Scobee: Again with only two kickers, although I like the two I did get.

Overall: This team has potential. I really liked being able to roster the three stud WRs. Could this be the team that gets me my first 77s win?

JP Draftmasters V 1.5 PPR for TE:

Another league using the FFPC format. I must say that although I have not yet had much experience or success at this format, I really like the FFPC lineup and scoring rules for draftmaster leagues. I did at least manage a second place finish in this league last year, so thats something to build on.

My team from the 11 hole:

1.11 Reggie Wayne
2.2 Calvin Johnson
3.11 Chris Wells
4.2 LeSean McCoy
5.11 Mike Sims-Walker
6.2 Pierre Garcon
7.11 Marion Barber
8.2 Dustin Keller
9.11 Donald Brown
10.2 Johnny Knox
11.11 Todd Heap
12.2 Chad Henne
13.11 Ben Watson
14.2 Kyle Orton
15.11 Matt Hasselbeck
16.2 Tashard Choice
17.11 Shawn Nelson
18.2 Brandon Pettigrew
19.11 Chicago Bears
20.2 Laurent Robinson
21.11 Sebastian Janikowski
22.2 Houston Texans
23.11 Josh Scobee
24.2 Washington Redskins
25.11 Kansas City Chiefs

QB: Henne, Orton, Hasselbeck: Wish I had one more starter, Orton may get replaced and Hasselbeck probably won’t remain healthy. This is definitely the weak point of the team.

RB: Wells, McCoy, Barber, D Brown, Choice: I like this group. Barber as a RB3 should be nice this year, and if he goes down, I do have Choice to back him up. Donald Brown could be a big hit some weeks, even if Addai stays healthy.

WR: Wayne, Calvin, Sims-Walker, Garcon, Knox, L Robinson: Now this is a VERY good group. I could get 4 starters out of this group in many weeks.

TE: Keller, Heap, Watson, Nelson, Pettigrew: I like the 5 TEs and their potential to cover the TE spot with a high total (and possibly a flex as well from time to time).

Def: Bears, Texans, Redskins, Chiefs: Fairly strong at defense. Most teams only have 2 and no other team has 4. I should have an advantage here despite the lack of a big name defense.

PK: Janikowski, Scobee: Again with the 2 kickers. My thought at the time was that kickers are more consistent than defenses so while extra defenses can really make a difference, 2 kickers vs 5 kickers normally would not (at least not to the extent that 5 defenses would). Accordingly, I thought 2 kickers would be best (since I needed the extra roster spots for this team to cover TE).

Leather Helmet Draftmaster:

Yet another FFPC style league, the only one using this format in which I did win the title in 2009.

My team from the 3 hole:

1.3 Adrian Peterson
2.10 Sidney Rice
3.3 Jason Witten
4.10 Pierre Thomas
5.3 Matt Forte
6.10 Pierre Garcon
7.3 Chris Cooley
8.10 Joe Flacco
9.3 Devin Hester
10.10 Johnny Knox
11.3 Julian Edelman
12.10 Chad Henne
13.3 Devin Thomas
14.10 Arrelious Benn
15.3 Jason Campbell
16.10 San Diego Chargers
17.3 Mike Thomas
18.10 David Akers
19.3 Rob Gronkowski
20.10 Stephen Gostkowski
21.3 Tennessee Titans
22.10 Lex Hilliard
23.3 Carolina Panthers
24.10 Josh Scobee
25.3 Jacksonville Jaguars
26.10 Kansas City Chiefs

QB: Flacco, Henne, Campbell: My best set of QBs yet (despite not having the 4th). Lets see how the rest of the team works out, but I may have to seriously consider grabbing a QB1 in the 8th or 9th rounds in the upcoming drafts. Then again, I believe its more effective in draftmasters to have QBs of roughly the same value teamed together (i.e., either all crappy or all decent, but not a very good QB coupled with a bad QB) in order to get the most value out of each pick.

RB: ADP, P Thomas, Forte, Hilliard: Hilliard was an odd choice considering that I don’t have either Ronnie Brown nor Ricky Williams on this squad. Oh well. ADP, Thomas and Forte make a very nice trio in draftmasters.

WR: Rice, Garcon, Hester, Knox, Edelman, DevThomas, Benn, M Thomas: This is a good group that could have been great if not for the Rice and DevThomas picks. This draft occurred before we got word of Rice’s “hip” thing. I really like having the Hester/Knox combo in this league.

TE: Witten, Cooley, Gronkowski: Interesting. I went with the two quality options which allowed me to save some roster spots later for WRs instead. We’ll see if this works out better than the 5 TE strategy.

Def: Chargers, Titans, Panthers, Jaguars, Chiefs: My best group of defenses yet. No other team had more than 3 defenses, most had 2 and 1 team even decided to go with only 1 (not advisable in draftmasters). I should have an edge here.

Overall: I like this team. I could have a winner here if Sidney Rice ends up playing and playing well.

Leather Helmet Draftmaster2 (FFPC style):

Finished a miserable 10th last year in this league. Hopefully I can do a little better with one year of this format under my belt.

My team from the 8 hole:

1.8 Larry Fitzgerald
2.5 Randy Moss (yes!)
3.8 Deangelo Williams
4.5 Pierre Thomas
5.8 Matt Forte
6.5 Pierre Garcon
7.8 Chris Cooley
8.5 Ahmad Bradshaw
9.8 Julian Edelman
10.5 Mike Wallace
11.8 Chad Henne
12.5 Fred Davis
13.8 Mark Sanchez
14.5 Todd Heap
15.8 Kyle Orton
16.5 Shawn Nelson
17.8 Matt Moore
18.5 Lance Moore
19.8 NY Giants
20.5 Houston Texans
21.8 Shayne Graham
22.5 Denver Broncos
23.8 Josh Scobee
24.5 Atlanta Falcons
25.8 Jacksonville Jaguars
26.5 Rob Gronkowski

QB: Henne, Sanchez, Orton, Moore: Hmmm, on second thought, getting Bradshaw in the 8th instead of Flacco makes this team look a lot better. This crappy group of 4 should do well enough.

RB: Deangelo, P Thomas, Forte, Bradshaw: Nice, 4 quality options. So far, a very good team.

WR: Fitz, Moss, Garcon, Edelman, Wallace, L Moore: Another good group, possibly great. I love Moss at 2.05 and Wallace was a great value as well in the 10th. Fielding a lineup of 3WR (and an explosive group of WR at that) and 3RB in most weeks should be doable.

TE: Cooley, Davis, Heap, Nelson, Gronkowski – This group really only needs to produce for the one TE spot. Cooley/Davis should accomplish. Heap/Nelson should be able to contribute as well.

Def: Giants, Texans, Broncos, Falcons, Jaguars: I sure hope I am right about loading up on defenses since I apparently did that in every league I drafted.

PK: Graham, Scobee: A popular duo for me. I guess these are the guys that keep falling in the draft? Can’t explain otherwise why I keep getting these same two kickers.

Overall: This may be my best draftmaster team yet in 2010. Unfortunately, I doubt I will be able to put together as good a set of WRs in the upcoming drafts (since guys like Wallace have been going much higher as of late), nor will I be able to get Deangelo in the 3rd and Pierre in the 4th in those drafts.

JP Draftmaster 4 (WCOFF style):

And last but not least, a WCOFF style draftmaster league (finished 3rd last year, 1st in 2008). This league should be the most useful in studying for the upcoming drafts since it uses the same format. TE is not as important, but I still need quality options there. The crappy TE strategy is not as effective either since without the extra half point per reception, the crappy TEs have a tougher time producing useful numbers as a group.

My team from the 1 hole (wow, I am really getting lucky draws in the draftmaster leagues. If only...never mind):

1.1 Adrian Peterson
2.12 Anquan Boldin
3.1 Marques Colston
4.12 Steve Smith (CAR)
5.1 Felix Jones
6.12 Zach Miller
7.1 Chris Cooley
8.12 Brandon Jacobs
9.1 Darren McFadden
10.12 Julian Edelman
11.1 Vince Young
12.12 David Garrard
13.1 Mark Sanchez
14.12 Demaryius Thomas
15.1 James Jones
16.12 Lance Moore
17.1 SD Chargers
18.12 Jake Delhomme
19.1 Ben Watson
20.12 Shayne Graham
21.1 Denver Broncos
22.12 Jimmy Clausen
23.1 Sebastian Janikowski
24.12 Buffalo Bills
25.1 Earl Bennett

QB: Young, Garrard, Sanchez, Delhomme, Clausen: Ah, some new blood in Young and Garrard. This group should be pretty good, I think.

RB: ADP, Felix, Jacobs, McFadden: Looking just to get 2 starters here per week. ADP is a lock, so hopefully Felix/Jacobs/McFadden can manage another starter.

WR: Boldin, Colston, Smith (CAR), Edelman, DMThomas, JaJones, L Moore: The difference in this format is that I need a minimum of 3 WR each week. The way I constructed the team at RB, I will probably need a 4th WR most weeks. Great top 3, but not sure if Edelman, Thomas, Jones and Moore can produce a 4th. You really need better and deeper quality WRs in the WCOFF format vs the FFPC format. Hopefully this will do.

TE: Z Miller, Cooley, Watson: Good group here that can produce a quality TE starter as well as a flex starter in some weeks. The Miller/Cooley picks allowed me to forget about TEs for a while.

Def: Chargers, Broncos, Bills: Defensive scoring in WCOFF is lower, so loading up on 5 defenses would not be as effective here (I think). So I went with 3, which means that I wont have an advantage at this position like I do in the FFPC style leagues.

PK: Graham, Janikowski: Again with Graham. I do like him this year in Baltimore, but I sure have a ton invested in one kicker.

Overall: This should be a decent team with a shot at the title. The trio of Felix/Jacobs/McFadden and their success will be key to this team having a shot at winning.

Whew! I was right, this was fun to write about. But I am exhausted. In any case, my game plan for the three upcoming leagues is now taking shape (just in time).
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