Analyzing Fantasy Football Draft Strategies: Running Back/Wide Receivers

For most fantasy football fans, and players, the running back/wide receiver positions are arguably the most important part of your team.  Many fans have to draft their team for success, and it is always good to know the various strategies to draft these important positions.

Here are some of the draft strategies for the RBs/WRs, but if you want to learn about the different strategies of drafting quarterback, here is a guide.

First 4 rounds

Now this is not quite as much as a specific strategy, but a lot of fantasy experts say that for the first 4 rounds you should draft only RBs/WRs.  Of course, if Aaron Rodgers, or Tom Brady are available in round 4, it is a viable option.  However, what you do in those first 4 rounds is debatable.

Zero-Running Back

Description: This strategy was popular last season, because of the rise of the WRs.  This strategy does not mean you draft no RBs the whole draft, but you draft zero running backs for the first 4 rounds.  You draft only WRs, and the reasoning behind this strategy was that WRs were considered to be more consistent from year to year, and more valuable by ADP (average draft position).

Pros: You will have a very strong group of receivers.  You will have a 4th round player (in theory) on the bench, which shows how much depth you have at the position.  You will have one of the highest profiled flex players (if you have a flex), because most do not get their flex in the 3rd round.  You have enough depth at WR, that if one gets injured, it will have minimal effect on your team (hopefully).

Cons: Your RBs will be pretty weak compared to the other positions.  You cannot depend on another position to perform and carry your team, because your team is WR focused.  If they underperform, it will be difficult to find other positions on your team to carry your team for the week.

Quad Running Back

Description:  This strategy is like the one above, except you draft (you guessed it) 4 RBs the first 4 rounds.  The reasoning behind this strategy is that running backs have a stable flow of touches each week, meaning that they will get points consistently each week.

Pros:  Take the excerpt for the pros of the “Zero-RB Strategy”, and replace WR with RB, and you have the pros of this theory.

Cons:  Same as the cons with the “Zero RB”, except switch RB with WR.  Basically, these first two theories have the same pros, and cons for the most part, it just depends which position you favor, and trust more.

Twin Pairing

Description: This has nothing to do with drafting twins, but mainly, you draft RBs the first two rounds, and the next two round you draft WRs, or vice versa.  This strategy make it possibly to favor a single position (a.k.a whichever you draft first), but still fill out both positions in the first four rounds.

Pros: You fill out your main roster spots for the RBs, and WRs (if you have a two RB/two WR Roster).  You will have strong starters in one of the positions, and the other positions is not completely left in the dust.  It is more balanced than the above strategies, but still focused on a single position.

Cons: Your depth will not be quite as deep as the above strategies, so your team could be hindered if one of your starting RBs/WRs get injured.  Therefore, you will have a weaker player to put into you lineup.  Your flex position is not filled as fast, and will be more weak, and more likely be a week to week spot starter.

Alternate Balance

Descriptions:  This strategy is like the “Twin Pairing”, in that you draft two RBs, and two WRs in the first 4 rounds.  However, instead of drafting in a 2, and 2 pattern, you alternate the position you draft each round.  Example, RB, WR, RB, WR, or vice versa.  The main objective of this strategy is to achieve a well-balanced team.

Pros:  Balance is in the title of this strategy, because, well, it is.  Your RBs, and WRs will be close in regards to talent.  One position does not overpower the other position, and your team does not have to depend on one single position to carry the team.

Cons:  Same cons as the “Twin Pairing” strategy.  You do not have a super strong position group, so you cannot expect for a single position to carry your team week to week.

Other variation to balance strategy:

Sandwich Balance: Draft pattern is A, B, B, A.  So first and 4th picks are the same, and the middle two are the same position.

Well, there are some of the main strategies for RBs, and WRs.  Of course, strategies are not set in stone, so if you have any variations or strategies that you use in drafting, comment below.  And remember, Sports Reaction Nation, be the best sports fan you can possibly be.

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