Dynasty League Football


Dynasty Fantasy Football Strategy: Startup Drafts

We outline some top strategies to come out of your dynasty startup drafts happy with your roster and prospects moving forward.

Justin Jefferson

So far in the Dynasty Strategy series, we have established a few things. The most obvious is that I have no idea how to do things in chronological order. The series started with an overview of how and when the properly execute a rebuild and then moved on to the basics of how to work through trades within your dynasty league. For this installment, let’s go all the way back to the beginning and talk about strategies around a startup draft that will hopefully render that rebuild article useless to you for years to come.

Startup drafts are discussed by so many in the industry, with so many strategies being touted as the perfect method to use when building a championship roster. From Zero RB to Robust RB, what I see is a lot of different ways that you can win your league right out of the gate but all could potentially fail based on your specific league. Instead of diving into each method, this article will simply outline a thought process that can easily be adapted to your specific league draft to help maximize both the value of your roster and dynasty knowledge as well.

Before diving into the player side of the draft, let’s start with a note to commissioners setting up the draft to ensure a level playing field for all and maximize the enjoyment of all of those in the draft.

Please include either rookie picks or the actual rookies in your startup draft

An argument can be made very easily for whether a rookie draft should be separate from the startup draft or not. A lot of it depends on where you are in terms of the off-season or something as simple as you want a reason to get back together later to maximize the fun. There is no problem with either and will both produce very even results. However, the place where a startup can go off the rails is when the commissioner decides to assign draft picks after the draft is concluded. This is most often done in reverse order of the original draft (so the team that drafted 1.12 in the startup would get the 1.01 in the rookie draft in a 12-team league). This will cause a huge inequity in your league, specifically in years with a highly touted prospect expected to come out. It essentially gives the team picking 12th an extra third-round pick while the team picking 1.01 gets an extra eighth. Snake drafting is set up to balance the teams already so please don’t disturb this balance when awarding rookie picks.

With that important piece of information out of the way, let’s talk about approaching the draft itself and the preparation that should go into any successful start. Like anything else in life, the key is to do your homework in such a way that allows you to both script the beginning stages but also adjust to what life throws at you as it goes on.

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Dynasty Fantasy Football Strategy: Startup Drafts
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