Auction Draft Recap
I wrote the Auction Strategy Guide that we posted earlier this week. So although I ran all the parts by my colleagues before publishing the article, you can assume that stands as my particular approach to auction drafting.
How closely do I stick to my own guidelines in practice? Let’s see.
I’ve competed in this industry auction draft -- which we play out through the season -- for the past 3 years. No 2 auction leagues are identical, so there will be spending practices here that might prove way off from what your league does. And the longer you’re in a particular league (with the same guys), the more you’ll know their tendencies.
Use that to your advantage.
In this case, I know that this group overpays for QBs in general. I also know that there are usually several owners who go hard early and deplete their banks. So patience is good.
But I’ll certainly still grab a value if it comes my way early in the draft.
The other big difference here is that we do a slow auction. There are 24 nominated players on the board through most of the drafting period, with each team nominating 2. Every fresh high bid on a player resets his auction clock to 24 hours. That doesn’t necessarily change the way you should approach the draft, however, or the manner in which you navigate it.
The scoring settings are common. Lineup: QB, 2 RBs, 3 WRs, TE, Flex, K, D/ST, plus 10 bench spots. (So we’re talking 20-man roster with a $200 bank.) Full PPR for all players, with the yardage scoring you’d expect.
Here’s a link to all the rosters. Now for my team.
Philip Rivers $10
Colin Kaepernick $1
I go in hoping to spend no more than $15 at QB, which -- at 7.5% -- is even a little less than we recommended in the auction guide. I was pleasantly surprised to get Rivers for just $10. I would like to have a stronger QB2, but the timing and pricing just didn’t fit. I also believe Rivers sits in the range where you don’t necessarily need a #2 QB to start the season, so I decided to just throw a dollar at an upside option rather than chase a backup.
Eddie Lacy $19
C.J. Anderson $16
Jay Ajayi $12
DeAndre Washington $5
DeAngelo Williams $5
I spent 28.5% of my budget on RBs, which is 6.5 percentage points less than the guide says.
I bought Williams just before the initial Le’Veon Bell suspension was announced, which turned him into a mega-steal (at least in my mind). He’s a good example of sneaking through a handcuff type early. I nominated him as a player I wouldn’t mind getting, but expecting someone to pay more than I was willing. I was pleasantly surprised to secure him for just $5 (which was even $1 short of where I set my limit).
I was keeping tabs on Lacy and Anderson as other early-round RBs left the board at prices higher than I wanted to pay. For comparison’s sake, every 1st-round RB (by ADP) went for $44+, Devonta Freeman went for $33, Mark Ingram $32, Doug Martin $31. Even Matt Forte and Danny Woodhead garnered $29.
I don’t love my depth with Miami’s muddled backfield and a reportedly strong camp for Latavius Murray dinging Washington a bit. But you could also shift more dollars over from WR to build up this unit, if you’d like.
A.J. Green $38
Mike Evans $30
Julian Edelman $15
Michael Floyd $14
Tyler Lockett $14
Torrey Smith $2
Dorial Green-Beckham $2
I wound up spending 57.5% of my budget at WR -- basically because I found that I could.
I won Michael Floyd first and was quite pleased that he didn’t cost more. I would have paid at least up to $20 for him.
Next came Green, who cost the same as Allen Robinson and DeAndre Hopkins, $5 less than Julio Jones, $7 less than Odell Beckham and $13 less than Antonio Brown. I’m not calling him a top value, but I did go in targeting him among the upper WR range because I liked the chances of getting a decent price. Same deal with Evans, who wound up costing less than Brandon Marshall, Brandin Cooks, Jordy Nelson and Keenan Allen, and only $1 more than Kelvin Benjamin.
Lockett came in between Green and Evans and arrived as another nice-priced player. I envisioned him as my weekly WR3-4 along with Floyd, plus whomever else I added.
Edelman hit the board late in the draft when I simply had more money than most teams. Given my bank and 4 strong wideouts already on my roster, I went after the upside with no worry for the risk with his foot.
Smith and DGB were throw-ins, back when starting in Tennessee remained a possibility for Green-Beckham.
Julius Thomas $5
Eric Ebron $3
Zach Miller $2
I would not recommend drafting 3 TEs in a lineup-setting, non-FFPC situation. Ebron and Miller hit the board at the same time in a range where I didn’t like the other backups should I miss out on both. Yet, I still spent only $10 on the position and came away with 3 guys who will start for their teams. At worst, I’m cutting a $3 and/or $2 player for waiver help.
Chris Boswell $1
You’ll rarely find me spending more than $1 on a kicker or a defense at auction. If I do, it’ll likely be because the position is running low and I’ve secured starters at all or nearly all other spots.
As usual, I finished the auction with a few dollars left over. I could easily go back through the draft and find spots where I would have done well to spend that money, but I’m also content with the team I drafted.
Let me know where you think I screwed up in the comments section below.