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Fantasy Football Auction Draft Strategies 2022

Whether this is your first year doing a fantasy football auction or you are a seasoned vet looking to improve your auction acumen, following these tips will help you build a championship roster in your upcoming fantasy football draft.

Fantasy Football Auction Draft Strategies

Do — Organize your rankings into tiers prior to draft day

The single most important thing to do prior to your fantasy football auction draft is to break your rankings into tiers and determine dollar values for each player. This will help you to set positional budgets and develop a strategy for your roster construction. Each auction takes on a personality of its own, and using these player values as a compass will allow you to ride the waves. Also, be sure to secure players before there is only one left in the tier, as they will often go for a premium compared to when there are still several players left in the tier.

Fantasy Football Auction Draft Strategies 2022
Credit: Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

Don’t — Be afraid to spend up on Superstars

Especially when an auction fantasy football draft is just getting started, there may be a hesitation to spend top dollar on the elite players who are nominated for bidding. Don’t be afraid to spend up to your original budget or even a little more on a superstar. There will be plenty of value later on in the auction to offset a couple of dollars here and there. If Jonathan Taylor is going for $66 and you have him at $65 in your rankings, throw out the extra $1 or $2 to see if you can get him for that price, or at the very least, drive up the prices for your competition. At the end of the day, it is better to have a couple of superstars on your roster and aggressively work the waiver wire and trade market to add depth than leave the draft without the equivalent of a first-round player.

Do — Be open to fantasy football auction draft bargains

One area fantasy football auctions differ from regular drafts is that while you may never draft a player that you feel is overrated, in an auction everyone has a price. With that, any player can be a bargain at the right price. This is another area where doing your homework with your tiered rankings will allow you to watch for bargains, and as the bidding closes on a player, that is cheaper than you expected. Nearly every auction has a sweet spot right after most of the top-flight players are off the board, and teams have spent and are now trying to save enough to round out their rosters that you will find some steals typically a top-20 RB or WR can be had a discount here.

Don’t — Become too set in your patterns

Don’t be afraid to mix it up and show some different looks throughout the auction by doing things like strategically jumping a bid by $2 or $3 instead of a dollar each time or throwing out a kicker or defense in the early going to see if you can sneak one by your league-mates or get them to spend more than they normally would to acquire the top-ranked kicker or defense. It is also good to occasionally bid on players you aren’t interested in, especially in the early going, to ensure that you aren’t only bidding on your favorite targets.

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Do — Keep track of everyone’s max bid

You can determine this amount by subtracting the number of players needed to fill a roster from the remaining money that a team has. For instance, if a team has $20 left to spend and needs four players, their max bid is $17. Especially as the draft progresses, this will become increasingly important. If you are able to know who throughout the room is your competition for the remaining players, you may be able to nominate players without fear of competition or someone driving up their price.

Don’t — Get caught up in the emotions

Throughout a fantasy football auction draft, a variety of things can cause you to go on tilt, getting caught bidding up a player you didn’t really want or losing out on a player that you thought you had saved enough for. Keep your cool and go back to your initial rankings. As the auction evolves, you should always have at least five targets in mind for when the auction winds down to the mid-range prices and dollar days. That way, even if you lose one, you have other targets in mind. This is especially helpful late in auctions when most teams only have minimum bids and it turns into a de facto draft.

Do — Make the most of dollar days

Once the fantasy football auction draft devolves into dollar days and many of your league-mates are wrapping up their teams or an additional beverage or two and losing interest, you should look for high-upside RBs to wind out your roster. When budgeting for your fantasy football auction, you can effectively set aside $5 for your kicker, defense and at least two or three high upside depth RBs. Typically, this will open up a little more for your spending at other positions as well and allow you to spend on your stars as mentioned earlier. This is the point where you will want to grab handcuffs for your RBs and in potent offenses who are only an injury away from being an every-week starter.

Don’t — Miss out on any of the fantasy football auction action

Unlike in fantasy football drafts where you can step away and grab a beverage or snack, if you miss out on an auction, you may allow a league-mate to get a steal on a player when others aren’t paying attention. On the flip side, if you notice that several league-mates are up and getting refreshments or using the restroom, it might be an opportune time to see if you can get a bargain. This usually happens at least once per auction and, if you are paying attention, you can take advantage.

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