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As the NFL gears up for a season without a pre-season (speculation on late round flyers will now be even more interesting), we at FantasyPros have been gearing up for fantasy football draft season.
This means our ever popular Draft Wizard has received a ton of updates over the last few weeks to help you better prepare for your real fantasy draft. The updates for Draft Wizard on the web (we'll talk more about our mobile apps in another post) address a variety of really popular requests from you, our user base, over the years.
To go along with our recent overhaul of the core Draft Wizard mock draft simulation experience (seriously, have you checked it out yet?), which included a modern user interface, the ability to choose how many players are suggested when it's your turn to draft, a draft simulation clock timer (for those masochistic types), and auction simulator fast mode, we now have rolled out for you:
- Implement draft strategies: Zero RB? Zero WR? Late Round QB? Want to stream your DSTs? You can now tailor the player suggestions you get based on your preferred draft strategy.
- Customize your opponents in a mock draft simulation: Does one of your leaguemates always use the Yahoo default rankings? Another one is a huge Green Bay Packers homer? You can now customize the behavior of the teams you draft against in mock draft simulations to more closely your leaguemates' tendencies.
- Get Instant pick reactions: If you got a steal, we'll let you know. If you overpaid for a player (drafting Brady in the 1st round again?) we'll also let you know.
Draft Strategies: Get tailored player suggestions using your chosen approach
This one has been a long time in the works. For those newer to the game, here's a quick summary. For more advanced/experienced fantasy football managers, these draft strategies are pretty common, but we'll break down the details of how they're implemented in Draft Wizard:
- Zero RB: No RBs will be suggested in the first X rounds, with the thinking that RBs are overvalued early in the draft and you can usually find some gems on waivers. For Draft Wizard, X is equal to the number of WR + Flex spots on your roster, e.g. 3 WR + 1 Flex (RB/WR) means you will not be suggested an RB for the first 4 rounds.
- Zero WR: Similarly, no WRs will be suggested in the first X rounds, with your approach being you want to load up on RBs early and find WR value later in the draft or on waivers.
- Late Round QB: You think that it's not worth it to spend a ton of draft capital on QBs. And you're probably right. Probably. Draft Wizard will not suggest a QB until (roster spots + 1) round. In other words, if your league is a 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 Flex, 1 K, 1 DST league, a QB will not be suggested until the 10th round.
- Streaming QB/TE/DST: A slightly more advanced strategy, this means you're looking to stream (i.e. pick up off of waivers each week) a player to fill a position instead of drafting one. Draft Wizard won't suggest the selected streaming position until all other starting and bench spots are filled. For streaming DST, you will not be suggested a DST until the last round.
- Custom: You can also create your own custom draft strategy. This will allow you to get creative, such as never suggested a DST or K (my personal go to), not suggesting a TE until after round 12, or similar.
Draft strategies can be accessed by clicking the gear icon in the upper righthand corner of the Player Suggestions area. This also allows you to specify the number of suggested players you are shown each round.
We're really excited about this feature and hope this lets you test out a variety of draft strategies before the Real Deal.
This is a premium feature available to our MVP and HOF users.
Customize Your Opponents: Tweak the Simulator to be closer to your actual league
This is another feature that we've been working on for quite some time. In the standard Mock Draft Simulator, the opponents you are drafting against are a randomized mix of experts and ADP (average draft position) values, run through a little black box to make it more realistic. However, for those of you that run a lot of mock drafts, it's almost as if your opponents can be too good.
While I'm not trying to denigrate the quality of your league's competition (unless you're in one of those 6 team leagues and like to ask others to rate your roster online...) we all know that your leaguemates have specific tendencies and are not always "draft the best available player for this position" drafters.
Maybe one really loves to go Zero RB (see above). You know another manager always picks the best player available based on Yahoo's rankings. Another manager is a huge Green Bay Packers homer and will draft all Packers players whenever it isn't a huge reach (and sometimes even then). Maybe your whole league values quarterbacks over other players.
Either way, we now have you covered.
You can access these settings after you've synced your league. Then, from the league settings view, click "Edit" under Mock Drafts.
This feature is currently available for our Premium subscribers.
Instant Pick Reactions: Get feedback on your way to draft domination
And just to add a bit of fun (and feedback, of course) to your mock draft simulations, we now display instant pick reactions for any draft pick reach or steal. Were you able to get Lamar Jackson in the 5th round? Amazing! You deserve kudos.
Did you draft a kicker in the 7th? Well... OK. But we're going to let you know what we think about it.
This will also give you the immediate opportunity to Undo that pick, if you so desire.
Looking forward to the season
I think all of you, like the rest of us, are looking forward to NFL kickoff with extreme anticipation. As always, our team is working hard during the off-season to get you the best experience possible to dominate during your draft and all season long.
Now, with Draft Wizard draft strategies, opponent customization, and instant pick reactions, we hope you'll be better prepared than ever for your real drafts.