What it takes to Win at Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football Advice: What it Takes to Win a Fantasy Championship

-- By Russ Bliss

Over the nearly 20 years I've been doing a fantasy football radio show, I'd have to say the most frequently asked question is what it takes to be a consistent winner in fantasy football. There are two factors in being a winner: skill and luck. It's been said luck is when skill meets opportunity. If that's true, then it's really not that hard to be a winner in fantasy football, and it's become a lot easier these days, with all of the Web-based fantasy football software at your disposal. There are three areas you control that will separate a winner from a loser in fantasy football. We'll tackle them in order.

The 3 step plan on how to win in fantasy football:

1) Drafting the right players.
2) Starting the right players.
3) Acquiring the right players through trades and free agency.

It all starts with the fantasy football draft

Whether it's a serpentine style draft or a fantasy football auction draft, it all starts with the draft. Knowing who to draft is the first step in winning in fantasy football.

Winning is usually done by the person with the best players. That should come as no surprise to any one. It doesn't take a genius to know to take the studs at each position and that having those studs helps your chances. Anyone can identify the big name players, and you usually don't get a chance to draft more than a couple of them. It's identifying the lesser name players who are primed for big seasons, or are in situations that give them a better than average chance to succeed - players that you can acquire one after the other in the middle rounds of your draft - that separates the winners from the losers in every fantasy league.

And finding those players has become much easier with the fantasy football Draft Analyzer.

The Draft Analyzer has scrutinized every player's historical performance, current situation, additions and subtractions of other players around him, as well as upcoming schedule, to produce an accurate assessment of that player's impact for the season. It then compares that player against all other players both at that position, and at every other position to assign where that player ranks.

But it doesn't stop there.

Does your league require you to start a tight end? Or are tight ends optional, and drafted to play as a wide receiver? Simply check a box, and the Draft Analyzer will take that into account and then project the tight ends in with the wide receivers. How do the top TE's like Jimmy Graham and Rob Gronkowski rank when compared with the top WR's? The Draft Analyzer has the answer. And with its customizable feature that takes into consideration the amount of teams in your league, and the amount of players on your roster, the Draft Analyzer helps you take the right first step in putting together a winner.

Winning decisions - week in, week out

Of course, winning isn't solely based on a successful draft. After drafting the right players, you have to know who to start every week. Again, it doesn't take a genius to know to start the "studs" every week. But no team is flooded with studs at every position, and therefore decisions have to be made. When is it better to start Steven Jackson over Matt Forte? Or how about Kenny Britt over MIchael Crabtree? Is this the week Joe Flacco makes the better play than Matt Stafford?

Making the right choice is the difference between winning and losing. And there are many factors that need to go into determining which player is the right one each week. Is that player on a hot streak? Are there any injuries to an offensive lineman that could affect his performance? How big of a difference will a backup offensive lineman or quarterback make? How good is the defense that player is facing that week? If it's a wide receiver, how good is that opposing secondary he'll be facing? Or is his opponent's stud corner injured? What about the defensive linemen? These are all things that need to be factored in when making a starting line-up decision.

And that's exactly what the Power Line-Up Analyzer does. It doesn't guess. It takes all considerations into account and provides you with the best recommendation for your starting line-up every week.

Trade up. Way up!

The last thing that separates a winner from a loser in fantasy football is making the right acquisitions through trades and free agency each week for your team. Making the smart move in these two areas is the last key in being a winner. Let's say you have a player who is just ripping it up early in the season. Another owner offers you a deal for that player. Is it worth it? Is the deal beneficial to you? Will your player continue his surprising production? Have his numbers been inflated due to good match-ups? Does he have more good match-ups the next few weeks? Or is a string of games against tough opponents about to bring him back down to reality? What about the player(s) the other owner is offering in return? Have they underachieved and are primed for the best part of their schedule? Will this trade make your team better? All of these questions need to be answered to make the right decision.

That's where the Trade Analyzer comes in. No more making poor, uninformed decisions when it comes to trades. The Trade Analyzer will factor in everything and tell you if an offer is a good deal for you now, or if it's a bad deal.

Drafting the right players.
Starting the right players.
Acquiring the right players.

That's how you win in fantasy football. And that's what the guys here at FantasyFootballStarters.com are committed to help you do. Fantasy football is your hobby, but it's our job. Making you a winner is what we're all about. You can spend many hours every week trying to do it yourself. Or you can spend a few minutes using our Draft Analyzer, Power Line-Up Analyzer and Trade Analyzer to do it for you.

It's your call.

Russ Bliss — fantasy football expert and radio host of "The Red Zone with Russ Bliss" on KDUS-AM — went head-to-head with the Line-Up Analyzer last year, and still wishes he had worn a helmet. Russ was so impressed with our predictive analysis engine, he joined the team at FantasyFootballStarters.com. Read more of Russ' article on our Word to the Winners homepage.

Copyright © 2005 Ready-Set-Go Fantasy Sports, LLC. All rights reserved.

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