Fantasy Football Draft Strategy 2023 - Drafting from the 7th Spot in a 12-Team PPR League
Picking different spots to draft from is always a solid plan because most leagues don’t determine draft orders till closer to the season. You can decide which places you like the most by practicing in different spots. At least then, if you get a choice of what draft spot you pick, you can hopefully nab a spot you felt most comfortable with during mock drafts.
As for what league it is (PPR, half-PPR, standard, etc., you should know that well before knowing what spot you have in drafts. PPR will always focus more heavily on Wide Receivers and pass-catching Running Backs, but it also could bring a few Tight Ends into play earlier than usual.
So let’s dive into what I found drafting from the seventh spot in a 12-team PPR league.
Round One and Two – What Falls to You
For the last few years, I’ve been a pretty major supporter of the “don’t draft QBs and TEs early” idea. But as I’ve continued playing fantasy football, I’ve realized the never-ending revolving door of QBs and TEs I pick up and start only to be disappointed might not be the best way to go.
Running Backs in the first few rounds tend to get injured (probably because they are workhorses or used a ton in their offense, which is why we draft them so high). Wide Receivers tend to be bountiful, so drafting them late, if you find the right ones, is also a good strategy. This is why, at the seventh spot, it’s a decent idea to look at TE Travis Kelce.
I think grabbing Kelce here isn’t a horrible idea because you are basically getting a potential highest-scoring fantasy pass-catcher in the league. Now Kelce wasn’t there when it got to me, so I pivoted to Cooper Kupp. I felt a solid, huge PPR Wide Receiver would be the best way to go here.
In the second round, I couldn’t help but grab Derrick Henry. Not sure why he is slipping so hard, but I feel like a Cupp/Henry start isn’t horrible. Besides Kelce, I believe any other TE or QB is a bit too early to grab before Round Three.
Best Player Available – Middle Rounds
This can be a strategy in any type of league, but the seventh spot tends to make this strategy better. I grabbed Mark Andrews in the third since he was still there, and I really do want to target TEs and QBs early this year.
From there, I didn’t really look at position as much as the actual player/team. D’Andre Swift is an intriguing option after a strange, injury-filled season last year. But he should be the #1 guy in Philadelphia, a team with a much better offense than the Lions. Rachaad White was another one that was just too good to pass up.
Now obviously, don’t just fill your lineup with all one position if it happens to fall that way, but for the most part, don’t pass on a guy just because you already drafted the same position the last round or two. Most likely you’ll need that player at some point anyways.
Wide Receivers on Good Offenses and Pass-Catching Running Backs
This goes for any PPR league. When it comes to these middle and late rounds, the players all start to really lump together in terms of potential/skill.
When that happens, it’s time to start looking at who they play for and if they have pass-catching skills. For instance, I grabbed Swift and White over other guys partly because I know they catch a good number of passes.
Now with Wide Receivers it can be tricky. Do you grab the WR2 for a good team or the WR1 on a bad team? I guess it depends on your preference and who it is, but
Late Quarterback Strategy
If you do happen to miss out on early Quarterbacks like I did, then you may as well wait until Round 10 or later. I did really want Trevor Lawrence, but he went right before I got to pick him.
If that happens to you, don’t panic. After the top 3 Quarterbacks they all tend to be pretty close in scoring anyway. I went with Russel Wilson cause I’m a glutton for punishment.
Ok, I went with him, hoping Denver turns it around this year. But this brings about my next strategy: Draft a backup who could blow up.
With Quarterbacks always in high demand, it doesn’t hurt to grab a backup IF you didn’t get one of the top 5-7 guys. Jared Goff, Geno Smith, and even Matthew Stafford all were drafted in Round 12 or later, and these guys could easily supplant your first Quarterback if need be.
Don’t be afraid to grab a Rookie Quarterback too, if they happen to be getting a ton of hype and Day One Start. If they somehow are the next Mahomes/Jackson, you’d be very happy with yourself.
Round 10-15 – Grab Rookies and Sleepers
So this strategy will never change for me. The double-digit rounds are always great opportunities to pick deep sleepers who could be league winners. Generally, this is going to be Running Backs who suddenly get thrust into starting roles thanks to injuries/poor play from the starter, but can include Wide Receivers who might get a significant role increase from last year.
This is why I went with guys like Wen’Dale Robinson, K.J. Osborn, and Devon Achane.
Robinson and Osborn have both shown potential and have yet another year under their belt. Achane wasn’t my first choice for rookie RB to grab (since the Dolphins have 400 RBs), but you may be pleasantly surprised should he seize a lot of work.
Basically, do your research on who you like/want, and try and grab as many as you can in the late rounds. Worst case you drop them quickly for someone who becomes a hot pickup after the first few weeks.
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