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5 Things to Do in the Fantasy Football Off Season

Michael WhooleySenior Writer IMay 2, 2009

SAN DIEGO - JANUARY 03:  Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts drops back to pass during the AFC Wild Card Game against the San Diego Chargers on January 3, 2009 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

An off-season in fantasy football can leave you more desperate for action than a single bridesmaid at her best friend’s wedding. Here are 5 ideas to keep your fantasy wheels spinning and prepare you for next season. 

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1. Create Your Own Fantasy Football League

Gather your family, friends, coworkers or whomever else you think would enjoy it and start your own fantasy football leagues. They’re easy to put together and give you something to do while you’re waiting for that first kick off. Once the season starts you’ll be glad you did. If you’re planning on being the commissioner of your fantasy football league you should know that while it can be rewarding it can also be a thankless job. So be sure to create some well defined league rules and communicate them clearly. Or save yourself the drama and find someone in your league who enjoys being in control of things (sorry, my wife is already in a league).

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2. Research Rookies

There are almost always a few rookies who make an immediate impact in fantasy football. If you want proof just look at what Matt Forte and Chris Johnson did for fantasy teams last year. Unless you’re in a keeper league, these rookies can usually be had in the later rounds. This is where you can strike fantasy gold. All it takes is some research, preparation and a little luck. There are loads of scouting and team reports worth checking out. Plus mini-camps and preseason games can be a good source on how rookies are faring on the next level. And be sure to check out www.brunoboys.net for the latest rookie news and player ratings.  

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3. Join a Forum

Forums are a great place to talk about anything fantasy football related. They’re free, easy and the perfect outlet when family and friends have banned you from any conversation that includes the word “sleepers”. Get the latest news and rumors from around the league. Ask other fantasy fanatics for their advice on trades, drafts and the upcoming season. Or maybe you just need to rant about something that’s been bothering you. You can find great fantasy football forums to keep you in the know at www.brunoboysforum.com.

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4. Gain a Deeper Understanding of the Game

They say the truth is in the details. This is true for fantasy football. The more you understand about how the game of football is played, the better equipped you’ll be to make good decisions for your fantasy team. Knowing exactly how offensive and defensive schemes work becomes a weapon you can use to your advantage. Like being able to tell when a sub par running back is going to have a superb game. Or why a particular 3-4 defense may not be the best match up for a quarterback who already has trouble reading coverage. Even the simple act of watching a game becomes a richer and more fulfilling experience when you can identify the little things that make football such an amazing team-oriented sport. 

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5. Get to Know thy Enemy

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Fantasy football is fun but it’s still a competition, which makes the off season a prime time for uncovering other team’s strategies and learning how they think. There are several ways to do this: You can get everyone together, start lining up shots at the bar and ask them a barrage of fantasy football questions. Or you can take a less aggressive approach and look at previous drafts to find patterns in how teams pick players. For example, I noticed in one draft that after the first tight end was taken, several teams panicked and immediately used the next pick to grab theirs. So next year, I made sure to grab the first tight end. Just like before, teams panicked and as it worked out I ended up getting the guy I wanted a round later with the best tight end to boot. Mind you, this kind of trick can backfire but if you get to know your competition well enough, you’ll always have an edge.

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