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How To Avoid Drafting A Bust In Fantasy Football 

Saquon Barkley Giants bust fantasy football
Giants running back Saquon Barkley has been injured quite a bit in his career. Can he rebound this year and have a successful season, or will he bust again?

Every fantasy football manager hopes their first and second selections of players will be a home run. However, uncertainties such as injuries often puncture many drafters’ hope. Now, injuries are inevitable. But staying on top of the players’ injury updates and team newsmay be an excellent way to avoid being caught up in the consequences of an injury blow. 

But injuries are not the only things that make a draft bust. Some tell signs can be avoided entirely, and you can adopt good practices to ensure that your fantasy league team performs up to expectation. No, it’s not choosing sturdy quarterbacks or lightning-fast running backs. Continue reading to discover three essential ways to avoid a fantasy football draft bust.

Choose Running Backs With Sturdy Offenses 

A running back’s performance is tied to the strength of his offensive line. Therefore it is often impossible or difficult for an RB1-RB3 drafted running back to have an outstanding season when their attackers can barely mount intense pressure. This was the unfortunate circumstance of 9 running backs between 2015 and 2021. You would be forgiven to have forgotten the woeful performance of the trio of Lacy Eddie, Anderson and J.Hill, who were arguably the most sought RBs in the run-up to the 2015 season. However, the memory of Saquon Barkley’s subpar performance last season should still be fresh. Drafted as RB9 after a pretty incredible run in the previous outing, Barkley was well on his way to finishing off in the top10 spot. However, much to the chagrin of many FL managers, he failed to replicate his previous heroics. And the pass catcher is not entirely to be blamed as his team scored low on every rating in that season.

Aim For Wideout With A Potent Quarterback 

Regardless of a wide receiver’s athleticism and agility, their sheer talent won’t count for much if they don’t have the luxury of a competent quarterback to supply passes. So, to prevent a bust in your draft, avoid flashy wideouts without the backing of a solid QB. This reminds us of Deandre Hopkins, a fine WR by all metrics that went on to underperform in the 2016 season in what is traced to be a dreadful quarterback display. The most agreeable correlation between WR performance and QB competence was in the case of Juju Smith. The freakishly talented pass receiver had one of his lowest seasons in the Pittsburgh outfit in 2019 when he fell 30 spots below the expected position (from WR5-WR35). As you may have guessed, the reason is chiefly another woeful quarterback’s underperformance. At least 15 other wide receivers have suffered this bitter fate in the last 6 NFL outings. 

Check The Player Team Rating 

Another obvious but often neglected way to avoid drafting a bust in your fantasy football team is to check a player’s team’s overall standings or odds before drafting. You can follow match odds on BetPhilly, which covers odds of various professional NFL team ratings. With such knowledge, you can prioritize drafting players who are not just talented but whose team also has a formidable offence line, potent quarterbacks and a solid defensive line. At the same time, inexperienced managers focus on raw talent alone. 

Wrapping Up

Finally, what draft method are you considering this season? There you go – 3 actionable practices to help you draft a top-notch fantasy football team. An in-person draft may be an excellent way to put these tips to use if you have some time on your hand. And don’t forget to have fun while at it. We are rooting for you. 

Damond Talbot

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at

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