*I penned this piece for 2018 undecideds/newbies to Fantasy Football Metrics, but I thought I would also share it again in 2023/annually for all to consider just in case any veteran FFM'ers have been wrestling with this...because every mock I do, it's an 'F' so far, which is AWESOME news. They're still not onto us!!!
RE-POST of 2018 piece...
Fantasy Football Mock Draft Grade of 'F' ? It is Exactly What I'm Shooting For…
I had a person, very genuinely, email me this past week asking what they were doing wrong in their practice Mock Drafts on various sites…or (what they were really worried about) was it that our player projections and valuations are so far off that they had made a mistake in becoming a new customer this year?
I was taken aback, but then I realized I better put out a quick message for any of the new clients and customers we have this year. I'm used to all this stuff, but FFM freshman can get rattled.
I'm so used to seeing 'Ds' and 'Fs' in my practice Mock Drafts working with clients ahead of draft day for years that it doesn't even register with me. In fact, if I don't see a 'D' or 'F' I know something went horribly wrong with my draft plan.
My company has been in business for about a decade now doing draft guide projections and analyzing redraft strategy – and using it in all kinds of practice Mock Drafts and then going forth into the real draft with the same game plan. We've built a pretty successful business based on repeating customer 'real' success in fantasy.
However, we are not guaranteeing victory at every turn. We're not squawking like fools with 'dominate the competition' B.S. chatter.
We have a different style of scouting and fantasy player valuations – different than anything you'll find in the mainstream or elsewhere. So radical, sometimes, that new readers and clients worry because it's such a different 'poker or chess game' we're playing that something must be wrong; it can't be right what we're proposing to do or valuing on players. The famous words I often here from people writing us off two paragraphs into something I write – 'well, no one else is saying that'.
This business was built and is growing because we do and say 'what no one else is saying' (but in the end we better be 'right' a lot...and we are).
Whether you use Fantasy Football Metrics as part of your fantasy/draft planning or you don't, let me share one piece of advice – if you're doing scouting and draft strategy like everybody else…you're in trouble. You've created a very narrow path to Fantasy victory driving in the same flawed, tired lane as the mainstream. My long-time clients pray your Mock Draft trials are graded 'As' and 'Bs', and you are then emboldened to stay on that course -- we're counting on it because we know how to play you and everyone else like you.
If you take solace in what the football intelligentsia is all parroting each other on, then I guarantee you're going to hate our writing, projections, scouting and analysis. You shouldn't subscribe if you trust the echo chamber just because they are ex-players or ex-coaches -- because even if you read and like our material…you're going to 'chicken out' and abandon the radical path to fall into the loving, quiet-death arms of the 'generally accepted' way to evaluate players and where/what rounds it's acceptable to draft them in for fantasy.
If you try to follow Fantasy Football Metrics' scouting and strategies, I cannot guarantee you'll win every league. It's not a magic wand. All I can guarantee is that YOU will be laughed at and mocked at in your draft when a wise-ass know-it-all (who knows nothing but the echoes from the echo chamber) weighs in on 'what you should have done…' or 'no one takes that guy there'.
I would also guarantee this – over time, and usually into year one of the regular season of using Fantasy Football Metrics scouting, you're going to leave people stuttering and stammering 'how did they know that player so far ahead of everybody?' In a year or two or three, in the same leagues, that confusion from your league mates is going to turn to fear – when you're interested in a player, then people take notice of that player. When you propose trades, they get scared to deal with you – scared of what you must know that they don't.
My legacy building FFM…while I love hearing about the titles people win, I more love the perpetual fear and respect our clients get from league mates with their creative, visionary drafts, trades, waiver wire moves, etc. -- a la the effect Bill Belichick tends to have on the other NFL teams.
The road to becoming the most notorious football mind in your league's redraft and dynasty rookie drafts, etc., begins with a giant 'F' (or a 'D') in your preseason Mock Drafts…and people criticizing you because they're so smart with their ESPN subscription. Learn to love the initial mocking at the start of your FFM mindset maneuvering (and some on-going mocking...because some people never break away from their institutionalization). In time, you will be the notorious football personnel mind in your league. That doesn't mean you win every year, because sometimes David Johnson breaks a wrist in Week 1 and Aaron Rodgers breaks a collarbone a few weeks in (damn you 2017!). I don't guarantee you non-stop titles, although you'll get your more-than-fair-share – I will guarantee you becoming the most notorious feared personnel mind in your league.
Or, just keep trying to do what everyone else is doing and trying to out-do them at it.
I'm R.C. Fischer, and I think I can assist you in fantasy personnel studies. Let's get 'Fs' in Mock Drafts together this year!
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