For some the Yahoo autodraft seems like a fantasy football version of Dante's Inferno.
Oh, one important ground rule to note: the autodraft has to fill the starting lineup by the end of round 8, occasionally round 9.There is no way around tight ends, kickers, and defenses being picked early.
Rounds 1-2: Autodraft picks best players from list. Sometimes both are running backs or wideouts but it's best-available. It will only pick a kicker, tight end, or defense in these rounds if you have one ranked as the highest-avail player when it is your turn.
Rounds 3-5: Computer picks best players from list excluding starting positions filled already. It will only pick a kicker, tight end, or defense in these rounds if you have one ranked as the highest-avail player when it is your turn.
Rounds 6-8: Autodraft usually picks tight end in the 6th, defense in the 7th, then kicker in the 8th. If one of the positions is already filled by round 6, then the computer will pick whatever three positions are left but it will maintain the same order.
For example: You picked TE Dallas Clark in round 4 but didn't pick a QB by round six. The autodraft would pick a QB in round 6, defense in the 7th, then kicker in the 8th.
Sometimes the computer picks a bench player in round 8, and the defense in round 9.
Rounds 9-14: Autodraft picks backups excluding positions already full.
Rounds 15-16: Autodraft picks backup defense and kickers. This only happens if the positions are not full already.
-Put all your kickers and defenses, except the few you want the autodraft to choose in rounds 7-8 in the 150-170 ranking level.
-Make sure your rankings for the top 50 (first five rounds) are solid because these are the ones you have the most control over. Once the tight ends, kickers, and defenses enter the mix in round 6 a bit of that control is lost.
-The autodraft format of picking the starting lineup first seems to be a way to level the playing field when in reality it simply moves the depth-picking part of the draft back three rounds.
-While in most cases the defenses and kickers drafted in rounds 6-8 will not be the same ones down the road for fantasy teams you still want to try and get one of the highest-ranked since you have to pick them early. Might as well make the pick count. Or try to.
Do you have any observations about the Yahoo autodraft? Leave them in the comments below...