Fantasy football mock drafts: How to handle an auction

Dan Schneier participated in a two-QB auction draft with other industry professionals, and shares his lessons and takeaways.

| 11 months ago
(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Fantasy football mock drafts: How to handle an auction

I’ll admit it — I’m a fantasy football draft format elitist. I try to avoid snake drafts at all costs and I’m the first to jump at an offer to join an auction league. This past weekend, I got together with a group of industry analysts for a mock auction draft.

One of the many advantages of an auction format is the ability to craft your team in a variety of ways by allocating different portions of your budget at each position and for starters/reserves. This mock was made even more unique by its settings. It was a 2QB auction with a $200 starting budget and a roster that consisted the following starters: 2 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 FLEX. There were also five bench spots and no kickers/defenses. The scoring was standard except for 0.5 points per reception. It was also a 10-team league and the draft was hosted by Sal Stefanile — co-founder of

For the sake of simplicity, I’m going to break down my general observations and a team-by-team breakdown. However, if you want to take a look at the final draft results side-by-side, you can find them here. Let’s jump in.

General observations:

  • Having played in a league with almost identical settings — aside from deeper roster requirements — I had an idea of how I thought the draft would play out. My preconceptions were wrong. The elite players went for between $7-18 more than I expected them to and the quarterbacks went far much cheaper as a whole.
  • It wasn’t difficult to realize this was an industry draft. There were several players who went much cheaper than their ADP would suggest and it wasn’t because people were low on their cash flow. You’ll see examples of this throughout.
  • The opposite effect came into play at the QB position. Several drafters weren’t afraid to stake their claim and bid a few extra dollars (or more) on their favorite QB2 targets. This created an interesting dynamic and fringe QB1s like Eli Manning and Tony Romo went for the same price as Ryan Fitzpatrick and Teddy Bridgewater.
  • Like you’ll find in most industry drafts that reward at least some points per reception, a lot of the drafters went WR-heavy. The result? The second tier of running backs came off the board at largely discounted prices.
  • Don’t freak out when you see some of your favorite mid- to late-round targets priced at somewhere between $1-3. There’s only 10 teams, five bench spots, and two quarterbacks have to start. This is common in this format.

Dan Schneier, Pro Football Focus (@DanSchneierNFL)

QB: Philip Rivers ($21), Ben Roethlisberger ($14), Eli Manning ($8), Jay Cutler ($2)
RB: Jamaal Charles ($32), Frank Gore ($3), Danny Woodhead ($3)
WR: Brandon Marshall ($23), T.Y. Hilton ($23), Mike Evans ($21), Michael Floyd ($10), DeSean Jackson ($9), Torrey Smith ($3)
TE: Travis Kelce ($11)

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Dan Schneier is a staff writer for PFF Fantasy, a former FOX Sports NFL scribe, and an auction format enthusiast.

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