Do you ever get tired of the same old ways to decide your fantasy football draft order? Picking names out of a hat was great in the 90s and letting your league software randomly pick is so 2000s. What if you could have fun picking your draft spot (adding a bit of strategy) and give every owner an email with the random draft order? That, my friend, is the beauty of determining draft order using the Kentucky Derby method.
The Kentucky Derby method is easy to do. First you need a random number generator. FFtoolbox.com has one you can use or you can do a google search to find one. The commissioner enters all the teams’ email addresses and hits generate. Each team gets a copy of the order to pick their slots. The first team on the list grabs whichever draft spot tickles his/her fancy. The following teams get to select whatever draft spot is left until the last owner gets stuck with the leftover draft position. If you select draft order the old-fashioned way, every team gets the luck of the draw, now it only affects one owner.
So, why mess with a good thing? This gives owners a chance to strategize which draft slot is best for them. Perhaps someone desperately wants to draft LeSean McCoy or Jamaal Charles, if that person selects the number one slot, the choice is theirs. They will also be choosing to go a long time between picks and then have back to back picks. Sure the owner will be vulnerable to position runs, but they might be able to cause a few too. There are other fantasy players that prefer to pick in the middle of the draft so they won’t be caught off guard and adjust quickly to changes in player availability during the draft.
I prefer to draft near the end of the first round, usually the tenth slot in most twelve team leagues. Many people question that strategy, but I love it and here is why. When you pick near the corners (at the three spot or the tenth spot), you can look what players are on those two teams (picks 1 and 2 or picks 11 and 12), then try to decide how likely it is that which one of the two players you are targeting will make it back to you on the turn. For example, if those other teams already have a quarterback on their roster and it is early, you could feel safe waiting until the swing back around to grab a signal caller. This works the same when deciding between a linebacker and a tight end, look to the teams behind you.
It can be even better to use the third round reversal method (3RR) with the Kentucky Derby selection process. The 3RR is when the draft order gets reversed in the third round, so a team that picked twelfth in the first round and first in the second round, will get to choose first in the third round and then last in the rest of the even rounds and first in the odd rounds. This deemphasizes the importance of the first pick overall and gives each team a more equalized chance at winning a fantasy championship. The 3RR is for more seasoned fantasy football players.
Every league needs to start somewhere, so make it more fun and interactive. Choose the Kentucky Derby!