Your ISD Sports fantasy football guide

Editorial Board

Yes, it’s that time of the year again folks. Thank goodness, we have football back.

You know who is the most grateful? The fantasy football junkies. The guys who live in front of a television and on a computer every Sunday. The guys who spend all of August thinking about who will be the biggest sleeper, or who would they rather have with the No. 1 pick.

Yes, fantasy football is back in full swing.

The following will be the editorial board’s attempt to better equip those who haven’t drafted yet, and make those who have already drafted say, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

1. Don’t risk it too early

In the first round don’t try and go out on a limb.

Yes, you may think this is the year that an unproven running back rushes for 2,000 yards out of nowhere, but it probably won’t happen. You’re better off taking the safe high-value pick like an Adrian Peterson or Chris Johnson.

2. Don’t pay attention to rankings

This is a philosophy that has helped win leagues for years.

Choose guys you want and you stick to them. During the draft you may get excited and want to jump at the chance for a player you didn’t expect to be there, but stick to your guns and it’ll pay off.

3. Prepare wisely

Think it out. Schedules help out a large amount.

Do you really want a guy that has to play the likes of the Steelers and Ravens four times a year in the AFC North? Yes, Sam Bradford may be a middle-of-the-road quarterback so far, but he plays in the NFC West. The style of team helps out a lot.

The Saints may be phenomenal offensively, but they have too many weapons and are really pass-heavy. Players on a team like the Colts are no-brainers — someone like Reggie Wayne for example.

He may not be the sexiest pick, but he’s been a top 10 receiver the past five seasons because Peyton Manning has to throw it to someone.

4. Avoid the one-hit wonders

Guys like Peyton Hillis and Steve Johnson were crucial last season because no one expected it. Same goes for Arian Foster. Yes, he may have won you the title last year, but he won’t be worth a No. 1 pick because defenses know how to prepare for him now.

5. But be ready to snatch them up at the same time

The waiver wire is key. A wise man once said be quick without hurrying. In fantasy football terms that means: Be the guy who snatches up the waiver wire players, but don’t go dumping your entire team right away.

If you beat someone to the punch and get that breakout player off the waiver wire at the beginning of the year, it could mean a championship. We know one fantasy owner who picked up Michael Vick at 2 a.m. on a Tuesday morning after finding out he would start the next week.

6. Drafts are won in the later rounds

This isn’t all that different from the regular NFL Draft. Our resident fantasy “expert” told us his starting team in the title game last year didn’t feature any one of his first five picks. The later rounds are time for sleepers and where you want to find the guys that make sense.

Last year Arian Foster was going in the late rounds, but someone had to get the carries in the high-octane Texans offense.

These aren’t fail-safe or guaranteed guidelines, but we believe these tips will only help you in your fantasy league this season. Hopefully, if you haven’t drafted, you’ll be able to avoid some of the pitfalls of every draft. Like taking Tim Tebow or a player who’s suspended.

If you’ve already drafted, we’re sorry. Just save Tuesday’s paper and use it next year.