You’re waiting in line at your favorite burger joint. The eight people in front are hoarding all the ketchup. You like ketchup, too. You know if you don’t get enough and have to go back later, the restaurant might be out by then.
What do you do? Get as much as you can, of course, so you don’t run out in the middle of your meal.
Running backs are the ketchup of your fantasy football condiments. They are the universal addition everyone needs and wants. And if you’re not careful in your fantasy draft, if you go too wide receiver-heavy early, you’re going to end up with a fantasy burger with too much mustard and not enough ketchup. That lack of ketchup will have you playing catch-up all season. And if you think such a concept is pure pulp fiction, just look at the average draft positions of the top-tier running backs and the history of volatility at the position. You want to get plenty of ketchup, because you
assume there likely will be a sour packet or two within your bunch.
Wide receivers are great, they enhance the burger experience, but they are the mustard. There are plenty to go around. You can always go back and get extra mustard. That doesn’t mean you wait and ignore the
need, but you don’t have to emphasize that flavor as much early in the process.
Your first several rounds should be dominated by making sure you have a handful of ketchup, while also
grabbing a few packets of mustard. You’re not worried about the bun (quarterbacks). The pickles (tight ends),
though a select few are much fresher than the rest, shouldn’t dominate the fantasy burger experience, so
no need to waste an early request on such.
You will reach a point in your burger order in which you have, say, four or five ketchup packets and three
or four mustard packets — save the uncommon occasion when a fresh-from-the-oven bun or newly sliced
pickle is placed in the bin and you can point to that specific item a little earlier than expected. Once you
reach that point of acceptable ketchup and mustard saturation, when you need just one more packet of
each, that is when you turn your attention to the bread and pickles.
In 12-team leagues, the Madman likes a pair of each — quarterbacks and tight ends. If picking this late on QB, you want the option to platoon players. And at tight end, you’re hoping to hit on one, and you double your odds if you grab two.
Because you had a steady diet of RBs and WRs early, you can splurge with some fat at QB and TE late.
And once you have placed orders on those, then turn to the garnishments. Kickers and team defenses are
interchangeable or streamable. Pick them last. And because streaming defenses can be effective, do the
unthinkable and pick a kicker before the last round. Follow this recipe, and you’ll create a delicious roster
worthy of an A-plus Zagat fantasy rating.