Understanding Draft Types in Fantasy Football

When you play fantasy football, if you’re new to the game, understanding the draft is critical. Your draft is what’s going to set you up for a successful season. When you have a strong draft, in the beginning, you’re more likely to perform well throughout the season.

The following are the things to know about the types of drafts in fantasy football.

The Basics

Fantasy players often look forward to the draft quite a bit. You can get together with friends, and your league might even decide to travel somewhere. For example, Las Vegas is a popular destination for fantasy drafts, although, of course, you can have it anywhere.

You have to find a time that works for everyone, and the goal is to have the draft as close to the start of the regular season as you can manage.

When you schedule it close to the start of the season, you’re as up-to-date as possible. You can gather the information you need.

A fantasy draft is similar to the NFL Draft, however, with the NFL, there’s an order that repeats. One team drafts first in every round.

On the other hand, the majority of fantasy leagues use a snake draft. A snake draft means the last team to pick in the first round, then gets to pick first in the second.

You have a time limit for pick, with most leagues giving anywhere from 30 to 90 seconds per pick.

More About Snake Drafts

The snake draft is considered the conventional or traditional format.

It’s the same overall setup as what you see in the real NFL draft, with managers choosing from a pool of players based on a set draft order until rosters are full.

The twist on the snake draft that contrasts it with the actual Draft is that the order is reversed after each round, as touched on above.

If you have the first pick in a snake draft, you might get the top player, so that’s good, but the downside is that you won’t pick again until No. 20. Then, if you’re No. 20, you get to pick right after that at No. 21, too, so that’s not necessarily too bad.

The snake format goes throughout the draft, and Manager 1 makes the first pick of round 3, while Manager 10 selects first in the fourth round, and it goes on from there.

If there are 15 roster spots, a draft is 15 rounds.

Ideally, you’ll know your draft position a minimum of an hour before the start of the draft. You should see the picks you’ll make in every round and then begin to think about the players that will be available based on the average draft position (ADP).

Mitch Rosen G9Sny0Almf0 Unsplash

What Is An Auction Draft?

An auction draft is newer and more complex than a snake draft but is preferred by some fantasy players.

In an auction draft, every manager starts with a pool of money, which is hypothetical. They use that money to bid on players.

In comparison to a snake draft, in an auction draft, the order doesn’t reverse every round.

You’re also not just choosing a player.

The manager who has the top pick chooses to nominate a player. After they nominate someone, any manager can place a bid on that pick during a set period of time, often a minute.

The manager bidding the most on that nominated player within the minute gets to pick him.

The manager with the second pick nominates another player and so on until the rosters fill up.

In an auction draft, you want to know how much a player is worth. Your objective is to fill your roster without going over budget.

Rather than ADP, auction draft guides assess the average value of a player.

The format is similar to a daily fantasy league, except you compete in bidding with other managers. These managers might drive up a player’s price in their bidding.

You can fill your roster any way you want with an auction draft, based on your budget.

Other Drafts

Other drafts in fantasy include a mock draft and an automated draft.

Mock drafts are like a practice format where you can figure out your strategies for the real draft.

In an automated draft, players don’t control the pick. The pick is automated, and it takes the best player that’s available as decided by a database.

A linear or straight draft shares similarities with a real NFL Draft. There’s a set order followed in each round.

Finally, there’s also a value-based draft, where fantasy players choose players relative to different value factors.

Photo of author

Author: Ben Burd

Published on:

Published in: