Last year, I put together a list of “rules” for myself when drafting, giving me an idea of how to attack every draft with a consistent structure. This year, I wanted to put pen to paper and move these rules from X to Campus2Canton. These rules are my own, so I don’t blame you if you adapt these ideas to your drafting style. I’ve said it before that I’m a little risk adverse, attack mobile only quarterbacks, and want to make sure that I spread ownership of later round players around. When it comes down to it, the best way to win your leagues is to draft the best players. This is how I feel I do that…

1. Bye Weeks Don’t Matter Until the Teen Rounds

It’s hard not to pay attention to bye weeks when drafting. But I really don’t think you should consider it a true factor in your selections until the teen rounds, at the earliest. In best ball drafts, you’ll have many options at each position to make up for a crowded bye week.

If you’re heavy on Week 6 bye for running backs, you only need two to be active, and then you can have receivers cover the flex positions that week. So, when drafting players early, I’m trying to draft the best players regardless of bye week. So many things can come into play, like injuries and the transfer portal (for early drafters), to bog yourself down with lining up availability weekly.

I’d only consider bye weeks early if it’s truly just a tiebreaker. If I have two players I love and the bye weeks line up better to go one versus the other, then that’s fine. I just wouldn’t care to pick a top option based on bye week.

2. Draft 1 of the 6 Top Options from Flex Guys from Texas State, Memphis, and Oklahoma State

I absolutely love these offenses and want to ensure that I get one of the top two receivers from these teams. Obviously, it’s hard to nab half of them (assuming you don’t want to take teammates in the same draft), so my goal is to get at least one of them in every draft. Those players include Brennan Presley, Rashod Owens, Kole Wilson, Joey Hobert, Roc Taylor, and DeMeer Blankumsee.

Kole Wilson Courtesy of Texas State Athletics

Why do I like these players? Well, you have proven production from every single guy here. You have returning production as an offensive unit that is really strong. And finally, you have capable (Alan Bowman) to great (Jordan McCloud and Seth Henigan) quarterback play. There are not a lot of question marks from these players. To dig deeper into these players, look at an article I wrote about them earlier this offseason here

3. Draft at Least 1 QB (probably 2) in the Top 8-10 Rounds

I’ve talked about this in the past and still believe it to be true, you can rank QBs 5-25 interchangeably and I can see why the rankings ended the way they did. This is a great class of quarterbacks for CFF, so I think you have to make sure you land at least one of these top 25. While nabbing flex players, your opponent locks in two potentially high-caliber quarterbacks. I don’t believe this to be a wise decision because there is a drop in floor and upside when you look at QB25-30 and later.

The elite stars at the top are worth taking in the top two rounds. Then, when you look at guys like Seth Henigan, KJ Jefferson, Jackson Arnold, Avery Johnson, and others in this top 25 grouping, you can see the upside, and the floor is quite high. Waiting until double-digit rounds for guys like Jalon Daniels, Riley Leonard, Jacob Zeno, and Quinn Ewers is risky. I like those guys in a vacuum, but not as my QB1 and probably not even as my QB2. This is why I’m focusing on landing at least one top quarterback option in the single-digit rounds, and if there’s a second one I love there, I’m also pulling the trigger on him there.

4. Don’t Draft a QB in the Third or Fourth Rounds

As much as I think the quarterbacks being taken in the third and fourth rounds are great, I’m just not taking them because of opportunity cost. Jaxson Dart, Nico Iamaleava, and Jalen Milroe are great CFF options, but I feel like I can grab 90% of that production a few rounds later and lock in flex guys that are studs in place of them. And I’ve seen guys move up or down from that 3-4 round range, so it’s not a specific quarterback thing for me as much as it is a flex option.

Jaxson Dart Courtesy of Sporting News

This is partly because I love the flex options in the 3-4 round range. It’s just how the ADP and quarterback options have come to be this offseason. If the likes of Dart, Milroe, and Nico drop to later rounds, I’m certainly willing to pounce on that value, but until that happens, I likely won’t have many of these middling elite quarterbacks in best ball drafts this year. 

5. Have the Majority of Your RB Room Filled Out by the 20th Round

I’ve made it no secret. I feel very confident in the receiver position later in the draft, so I’ll ensure I fill out my running back room before hitting round 20. Then, I shift focus from rounds 20 to 30 toward receivers and my final quarterbacks and tight ends.

There are certainly interesting options in the early 20s. Players like Kevorian Barnes, Zach Evans, Reuben Owens, and Devin Mockobee all intrigue me in these rounds, but I don’t want to fill my running back room with more than one or two of these types of backs. The running backs we typically want in CFF are ones with volume on the ground and through the air and some scoring efficiency. You’re not likely to find many of these later in the draft.

Be on the lookout for Part 2 next week, when I’ll have the second half of my rules ready for consumption!

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