The art of planning ahead

Fantasy football is a day-by-day, week-by-week endeavor, so it can be difficult to look ahead when you're focused on how much to spend on the waiver wire this week or if you have a player on a bye you must replace.

However, studying the matchups in advance and even piecing together the right players for a playoff run is extremely important if you want to reach the pinnacle.

For example, if there is a defense on the waiver wire that has a bad matchup for the week, but they have a great matchup or two in the following weeks, it’s worth adding that defense early and stashing for when you’re ready to deploy.

Same goes for the quarterback. I’m all for rostering more than one quarterback, even if you have a stud at the position like Patrick Mahomes or Deshaun Watson.

Let’s take my team for example: I drafted Carson Wentz to be my starting quarterback, and he’s delivered for most of the season, however I also picked up Josh Allen midway through the year to serve as my quarterback during Wentz’s bye week.

But I also picked him up specifically for another reason. Wentz’s schedule the next four weeks is: Buffalo, Chicago, bye, New England. He’s facing arguably the two best defenses this season and Chicago is no slouch on defense either.

Allen’s schedule during that four-week span is as follows: Philadelphia, Washington, Cleveland and Miami.

So I’m starting Allen over the quarterback I spent draft capital on, simply because his schedule is set up better for success. Then, after the gauntlet is over for Wentz, he faces Seattle, Miami, the New York Giants and Washington. Those last three games would be playoff games in fantasy football, too.

It’s a little more difficult to plan ahead for skill positions, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility. If there is a tight end available on the waiver wire that maybe hasn’t had the best season but has an upcoming game against a team that is horrible at defending the tight end, he’s worth a plug-and-play.

Fantasy football is a daily game, with most of the attention focused solely on the week ahead. But if you want to graduate from being a good fantasy player to an elite fantasy player, planning ahead is essential.

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