Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football Blueprint to Success

Fantasy Football is about one thing, dominating your league. Sure, you can pull down your championship with a 7-6 regular season record, but you will always get the peanut gallery from your league letting you know your team got hot at the right time. Chances are — they are right. Finishing 12-1 with high points during the regular season and winning your Championship game by 50 points. That should be every Fantasy owner’s goal.

Because of this, I am going to vary off topic. Why? Because there isn’t a chance in hell I will be able to lock up my Top-5 Fantasy players on a single roster. There isn’t a Fantasy owner out there that can. Instead, I offer a Fantasy Football blueprint to success by providing you six players you can grab in the first six rounds of any draft that can lead you to glory.

For this little example, let’s say we draft from the sixth slot in a 12-team, PPR league. Each player offered has a very realistic chance at being available to draft, based on current ADP data provided by ESPN.


Fantasy Football Blueprint: All-Domination Team

And with the first pick of my 2012 All-Domination squad, I select Calvin Johnson (7.2 ADP). The reasoning is simple. He is head-and-shoulders above the rest of the pack at receiver. He led the league in both touchdowns and receiving yards while hauling in 96 passes. He is a complete mismatch for any corner or safety in the league and has proven time and time again you can’t stop him. The impending emergence of Titus Young means the Lions have someone on the other side of the field to keep opposing defenses honest, and that makes me giddy.

Matt Ryan, Fantasy Football Blueprint

Many Fantasy owners will be happy to skip the top quarterbacks in order to load up on running backs and wide receivers, only to pick up Falcons QB Matt Ryan. — Photo Credit: Atlanta_Falcons

For my second-round selection,Jimmy Graham (21.3) looks way to tasty to pass up. How can you argue with 99 receptions for 1,310 yards and 11 touchdowns? Oh, and for those of you who don’t know his story, the kid is still learning the nuances of the game. He may not top last year’s numbers, but he will come damn close. Marques Colston may be the Saints WR1 on paper, but Graham owns the attention of quarterback Drew Brees.

Third round gets tricky because running back is filled with a bunch of guys I consider more questionable then our Presidential candidates. If there is one thing I know you can’t teach, it’s god-given ability. Because of that, I tend to lean toward the superior athlete. Julio Jones (31.3) has breakout written all over him, and gets the nod here. The Falcons offense is morphing into a no-huddle, pass-happy attack. Matt Ryan is a smart kid and has the ability to call a solid game from the line of scrimmage. With Roddy White on the other side of the field both receivers should see plenty of single coverage. Sweet action, right there my friends.

Darren Spoles, Fantasy Football blueprint

Darren Sproles can score through the air or on the ground. — Photo Credit: Tao*Ksu

With my fourth pick, it’s time to double up on the Saints and grab Darren Sproles (43.4). Last season, he hauled in 86 passes and scored seven touchdowns through the air alone. Basically,you get another receiver in a PPR league that should also hook you up with 500 yards on the ground a few more scores. How can you say no to that? For those of you against loading up with players from the same team, here is a little food for thought — New Orleans led the league in passing yards, were sixth in rushing yards and no opponent prevented them from scoring at least 20 points last season.

At five, it’s quarterback time. My target is unquestionably Matt Ryan (62.2). I mentioned him above, so I don’t need to go into extreme depth here. Ryan has steadily improved as a signal caller since coming into the league. The likely demise of Michael Turner is the final piece of the puzzle. Jones, White and TE Tony Gonzalezare going to get a lot of red-zone work this season, meaning Ryan throws for 30-plus TDs for the first time in his career.

Finally, in Round 6, we draft our RB2, rookie Doug Martin (80.2) from the Bucs. New coach Greg Schiano is on the record as saying Martin “at times reminds him of Ray Rice,” which in itself is enough of an endorsement to grab him at this stage of my draft. Tampa has a solid line and the kid has a full arsenal of make-‘em-miss moves. He should see 300 touches and finish as a Top-15 option.

The Fantasy Football blueprint to success isn’t difficult to pull off. Good luck!



  1. John

    September 1, 2012 at 11:12 am

    I love that strategy but the problem is Graham is gone by mid 2nd in each of the 2 leagues I’ve done, Julio is gone by the end of the 2nd, and Doug Martin hasn’t made it to the middle of the 5th. I have the 6th pick in a 12 team league tomorrow and I’m leaning towards Megatron if he’s available but the scarcity at RB scares me.

  2. Bryan

    September 4, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    Is this a six-team league?

    • Gonos

      September 5, 2012 at 11:24 am

      The writer mentioned that this was based off of Average Draft Position on Fantasy leagues. And that’s the only place you’d see Doug Martin going after the fourth round.

  3. Ian Riley

    September 4, 2012 at 3:46 pm


    This piece was a blueprint of how to attack a draft using a websites (ESPN) ADP Rankings. I used them as an ideal situation. This would be my preferred team from this draft slot. I understand getting my hands on this exact squad would be difficult. My guess is I would have maybe a 50-percent chance tops.

    Ability to improvise is key. If Graham is gone, I wouldn’t have any issues taking Gronk instead if he was there. Julio Jones is flying up draft boards, but guys like Greg Jennings and Hakeem Nicks are both lingering. Each would make for a quality replacement. The toughest grab of all would be Doug Martin. The cats out of the bag on him. If he didn’t fall I wouldn’t have an issue rolling the dice on a Stevan Ridley. I think he sees 250 touches, and in that offense that means nice value.

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