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Fantasy Football Friday: 3 tips for after your draft

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Let’s get you ready to win your league

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Chargers Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Maybe you’re drafting this weekend or perhaps you drafted already. Either way it’s important to remember your fantasy season doesn’t end after the draft. We prepare so long for the draft and sometimes it can feel like it’s all downhill from there, but it’s j’sst the beginning. So as you’re looking over your roster in preparation for the season to start on Thursday, there’s still plenty to do to help shape your roster for the rest of the season. These tips might seem obvious, but they can often be overlooked steps that can help give a little edge to start your fantasy year.

Scout the waiver wire

There’s always a few players who break out in the first week or two who become the hot waiver wire targets. Sometimes they’re just flashes in the pan, but other times they can be season changers. Last year Alvin Kamara wasn’t drafted in most leagues, but won just about every league he was eventually picked up in later in the season. Not every waiver wire pick is going to be Kamara — or even come close — but it’s good to get familiar with the players you might be trying to acquire over the first few weeks of the season.

When looking at these players it’s important to look at more than just how many points they put up the previous week. Look at the opportunity the player has to continue producing and look at the upcoming schedule for the potential impact for not just immediately following the pickup but in the week after. This is especially good if you’re streaming a position — you should probably doing that for at least kickers and defense — it’s ok to map out a potential streaming schedule.

Also on this count, be familiar with how your waiver system works. Is it a straight priority system or is your league using FAAB, which allows you to bid on a player. If it’s priority, do you get bumped down the list once you make a claim or is it by record every week? For FAAB, have a preliminary outline of how you want to budget throughout the season.

Know your opponents’ rosters

You’re going to spend a lot of time with your fantasy team this season, but you should also spend a decent amount of time with the rosters for everyone else in your league. It helps to know upcoming opponents and it’s good to scout out strengths and weaknesses. That can help you know if any of tryout leaguemates are more likely to go for a player on waivers and it can be a good first step of knowing who and what fits for trades in the future. Speaking of ...

It’s always trading season

Putting together and fielding trade offers can be one of the most fun parts of a fantasy football season. That can start almost immediately — it’s never too early to try a trade. Whether you were in a snake draft or an auction there’s probably a player you wanted but couldn’t grab for whatever reason. Sometimes fantasy owners can be a little attached to the players they drafted, especially early in the season, but it never hurts to test the waters. Even if the initial request doesn’t work out, getting familiar with the tendencies and temperatures of your trading partners can help make a future trade easier to execute.