Pure Fantasy Football: Draft Strategy Pt. 1

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Pure Fantasy Football: Draft Strategy Pt. 1
(Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

Pure Fantasy Football is a series that I will continue more during the season after each week. The purpose of the series will be to give readers updates, week-to-week sleepers, and key matchups to help your fantasy chances.

This Pure Fantasy Football article's topic is on draft strategy. This topic will consist of three parts.

So without further delay, I bring you part one of this three part topic.   

I participated in a mock draft where I implemented the typical draft strategy of going RB, QB, and WR in the first three rounds, in that order. Then I selected out of the top three players available in each of the following rounds according to the ESPN.com rankings. 

Here is the roster of the team I was able to draft with the eighth pick out of 10 owners:

QB Tom Brady in the second round.

RB LaDainian Tomlinson in the first round.

RB Kevin Smith in the fourth round

RB/WR Chad Ochocinco in the seventh round.

WR Terrell Owens in the third round.

WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh in the fifth round.

TE Tony Gonzalez in the sixth round.

D/ST New York Giants in the 10th round.

K Rob Bironas in the 16th round.

Bench Cedric Benson in the eighth round.

Bench Jamaal Lewis in the ninth round.

Bench Devin Hester in the 11th round.

Bench Derrick Mason in the 12th round.

Bench Trent Edwards in the 13th round.

Bench Leon Washington in the 14th round.

Bench Tony Scheffler in the 15th round.

As you can see my first three rounds landed me Terrell Owens, Tom Brady, and LaDainian Tomlinson.

This was a very good core to build the team around especially considering I was using the eighth pick and they were the best ranked players of their respective positions at those spots.

The supporting cast around my big three is most impressive and may prove to be the highest quality this strategy brings to the table. 

You can see for yourself that there are eye poppers available late, which could prove to be the difference between winning or losing rather than your top three.

A big one was the fact that Houshmandzadeh was available when the fifth round rolled around. A guy with definite third round ability this season, was available very late because of the surging need for owners to snatch up running backs.

Do not be worried by the snatching of running backs early though because there is plenty of depth at the running back position this year.

Kevin Smith ended up being my second back with the fourth round pick.  As my second back, he is guaranteed to have over 1,000 yards and all the team's rushing touchdowns since Smith is not splitting carries with another back.

Smith in the fourth round is an excellent pick up, and also provides you with the flexibility to draft a receiver in the third round rather than jump up for a second running back so quickly.

The reason for importance in containing an elite receiver by the third round in this year's draft is the drop off outside of the top ten receivers. 

Too many receivers have question marks surrounding them this season the deeper in the draft you go. Though the late picks are full of potential, you need the one elite to ensure having an anchor to hold down the ship to prevent wreckage.

Checking over the roster time and time again thinking about where ESPN and other fellow fantasy owners had different players ranked, there was one surprise that really caught my attention more than anything else.

Trent Edwards in the 13th round!

This guy some say may be the sleeper quarterback of the season. While I do believe the potential is there this year with the addition of Terrell Owens, I'm not sure Edwards is quite ready to enter his prime.

Trent Edwards passed for 2,699 yards, 11 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions. The touchdown to interception ratio is specially unimpressive. Things can change especially when you add a weapon like Owens, a move that gives Edwards a chance this season.

Whether he is ready to emerge as one of the top quarterbacks yet or not, saying he is a steal at the 13th round is like saying the earth spins.

Having the potential of being a good fantasy starter and lots of trade value with an valued draft pick as your backup could prove to make a huge impact.

Even if Edwards is not your starter from day one you have the comfort in mind that you have some flexibility with a player off the bench or ability to make a move.

Picks like these is what makes us owners the smartest of all GMs.

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