Big Board Review
In the offseason, I proposed a different way of organizing your draft preparation; The Big Board (BB). This method of organizing players for the draft gives the owner a dynamic use of tiers and team needs, rather than the traditional linear and static ranking system that is widely used. Readers can dive back into the archives to look for how they can construct a BB according to their league settings. I will give a brief summary of how my personal BB was constructed and then give a hindsight view of how it worked.
I began the BB process by making a player matrix. Imagine an XY-axis with the X-axis representing my subjective likeability of a certain player and the Y-Axis being the consensus perception. This is a simple exercise to help me realize who I can reach for and who I can wait on before creating my tiers. Some of the names that I liked better than consensus in 2015 are: Duke Johnson, Cam Newton, Andre Ellington, and Brandin Cooks. Players that consensus likes way more than me were: Joseph Randle, Breshad Perriman, Julian Edelman, Brandon Marshall, etc. The next step is to create a tiers for each position. Finally, I will create a BB and begin slotting names into the rounds that I would draft player [X].
Below is an example of my 2015 Big Board
If you’re hardcore, you can order one of the fancy big boards online and do that instead.
Through the 2015 season, I have created a big board for a regular nonPPR league, my PPR league, my keeper league, a 2QB league. I have also mixed and matched different strategies including Zero-RB, Late Round QB, Gronk + 2WR, etc. Each time I move players around, I test out the strategy in a mock draft. The final product was tailored to the tendencies of my league mate.
Here is an example of a team that I came away with
This team used the late round QB + Zero RB strategy. So my starting WRs were Dez, Mega, Evans, & ARob. I went into the season thinking that I’ll be relying on MGIII and Ivory as my primary backs, but was able to stream the position (TAKE THAT DENNY CARTER, who said streaming RBs is not a real thing). Eifert was a late round grab too. The way I constructed my Big Board allowed me to be patient in a lot of facets. All the teams that I used the big board, I made it to the playoffs.
*side note* Much like rankings, after about round 6 or 7 of any redraft draft, the rankings may go out the window. I use my big board as a guideline from that point on. But the advantage of the BB over traditional rankings is that I already sorted the positions and have a good idea how long I can wait for certain positions. For example, I knew I could take Allen Robinson in the 6th round as my 4th WR, and still land my other starting RB later.
The utility of the Big Board also doesn’t stop after the draft. Because I back loaded my late round picks with guys I like to have but don’t have the roster space, it became a personal Waiver Wire watch list that helps me sort priorities of who I can pick up and drop.
The next step for my Big Board project is to create a rookie Big Board draft for dynasty league. While the thought of creating a Big Board for Dynasty Startups is appealing, I don’t think I follow the same strategy in each startup, so it makes it difficult to gauge what I like to do.
I would also like to help you create a Big Board for your specific league. So if you ever want to try one out, let me know @FFDynasty101. This offseason is the best time to begin the process. You’ll find soon enough how Big Board is superior to rankings.