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How to Prepare for Your Rookie Draft: March Edition (2024 Fantasy Football)

How to Prepare for Your Rookie Draft: March Edition (2024 Fantasy Football)

The offseason can be an excellent moment to reboot and walk away from the game of football for a minute. However, we recommend against this because the offseason is when you take advantage of your sleeping league mates and learn to crush them in rookie drafts. Like the real NFL, we are now the GM of our team.

2024 Dynasty Fantasy Football Guide

We need to analyze our picks, analyze our teams and even analyze our trade partners to control as much as possible during our rookie draft. Today, we will guide you on how to proceed with doing just that and making sure you beat your opponents from the jump to succeed in your fantasy football season next year.

Below are the rules you must live by to have a successful draft.

How to Prepare for Your Rookie Draft

1. Research

We know this seems simple but research is the name of the game. You start here with all the fantastic work we provide at FantasyPros. You do not just box score study these players but learn what breaks them into better players. An example is Drake Maye. How is this prospect’s footwork? Does he create inconsistency in his throws with shotty footwork?

Maybe you like Xavier Worthy due to his record-breaking 40. Well, what else do you know? Do you know he is a smaller player? If that doesn’t bother you, do you understand his route tree abilities? Due to his size does he struggle against a physical cornerback? The answer to the last one is yes, by the way.

These types of little things are what build the foundation of a player. These factors matter in whether they will succeed in the NFL or become a bust. Make sure to spend 10-20 minutes a day learning about these players until your draft.

2. Study Your Leaguemates

Looking into the past will help determine the future. Does your buddy Frank think his team is a QB factory? Maybe every year he passes up more sure-fire talent for positional value. Recognizing a pattern like this will help you identify which players will land where within your rookie draft. Remember, the rookie draft is just a giant Jigsaw puzzle without the life-or-death stakes attached to the moment.

3. Should You Think About Trading Your Assets?

Some teams/managers live to play for the future. However, you know a ton of leagues fold every year. You also can never promise tomorrow. My idea is to play for this year and try to win usually. Some teams need a rebuild, which takes a couple of years. That is also fine.

If your team is on the edge of glory and you have a middle-of-the-round pick, you should consider trading out of the position. An example would be you have the 1.08 and you can trade for DJ Moore. Would you rather receive an unproven rookie or someone who we know what he provides for your team? For us, it’s always the proven track record.

Now, you can do this trade before the draft, but you never know who may fall and you’ll question yourself if a stud somehow slips into your old drafting spot. This strategy is a draft day trade because you can watch the board play out before you. However, now is the time to identify the teams you may want to target, the position on their team they may need and who you want to receive in return. That way, when it lands on you and your team is on the clock, you can immediately send your offers and waste zero time in GM mode.

4. Who Are Your Favorite Sleepers?

This rule will depend on where these players are drafted but you must identify your sleepers early. Two people I pushed last year in my articles were Tank Dell and Puka Nacua. I loved Dell for his separation ability and Nacua for being a Walmart version of Deebo Samuel. The year before, I loved Isiah Pacheco because of how he ran with the ball.

I was determined to get them, so I made notes. I ran my mock drafts. I watched other mock drafts. I charted a course of where they would land and then I aimed to draft those players higher than their average draft position (ADP). When it’s late-round players like this, you take your shots.

Most of the time after the first round these draft selections come with a greater risk of becoming a bust. Get the players you love and don’t ever think twice about it. Isn’t it more fun to root for the players you love when they are on your team?

5. Begin Conversations Now

Don’t walk into the rookie draft with zero conversations with your league mates. Have 1-1 conversations with them and talk within the group chat, too. Just make sure you are talking generically in the group chat. An example would be, “Did you see J.J. McCarthy bomb at his Pro Day? It was good, but he is giving me shades of Zach Wilson, right?” After that, sit back and see who says what about your statement. People will tell on themselves. Note what was said and move on to another topic a few days later.

As for the 1-1 conversations, those can be a bit more detailed. An example is, “Hey, on draft day, before you make your pick, let’s talk for a few minutes about possibly working out a deal.” All you need to do at this point in the game is plant the seed in their head.

Hopefully, these rules will help you handle your rookie draft correctly. Remember, the best research comes from FantasyPros, where we guide you with articles, videos and podcasts. We do hours of research so you can reap the benefits and win your leagues. If you have any other questions about how to proceed in a rookie draft or how to feel about a prospect, contact me on Twitter and I’ll help you. I’m always open to conversations. Have a great offseason and good luck in your rookie draft,


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