NFL.com held its experts league auction mock draft of the year on Friday, July 26th. The standard scoring league consists of NFL Fantasy LIVE members Michael Fabiano, Elliot Harrison, Jason Smith, Akbar Gbajabiamila, Molly Qerim and Dave Dameshek. Also in the league are NFL.com fantasy editor Marcas Grant, associate fantasy editor John Juhasz, researcher Bill Sudell and fantasy product manager Evan Singer. Each owner was required to put together a lineup of one quarterback, two running backs, two wide receivers, one flex (RB/WR/TE), one tight end, one kicker and one defense/special teams unit.
What was your draft strategy?
Last year was the first auction draft I was ever a part of and the one thing I learned from that experience was to exercise patience. So this year, I made it a point not to jump in early on some of the big names that were up for bid, knowing that I could find some better values later in the draft.
Did your draft strategy work?
For the most part. There were a couple of players that I bid on in an effort to raise the price and ended up being stuck with, but that's bound to happen. But if I could do it again, I'd wait even longer to pick up a quarterback -- you can wait even longer on them in an auction than you can in a standard draft format!
What was your favorite pick(s)?
That's easy. It was Stevan Ridley for $14. I've been big on Ridley's potential this season -- even more so with the uncertainty surrounding Tom Brady's pass-catchers. After Reggie Bush went off the board a couple of picks before that for $16, I felt like getting Ridley for two bucks fewer was a downright steal.
What was your worst pick(s)?
Probably C.J. Spiller for $48. I definitely overpaid for him, but in my defense, most of the featured running backs were off the board and I had yet to pick one up for my roster. That's another lesson from the auction format: sometimes you have to overpay in order to fill a position of need. So while it wasn't a great pick, it's one that I won't regret quite as much.
Who drafted the best team?
I can't believe I'm saying this, but I like Dave Dameshek's team. He spent big in the early going, but when you look at his starters and some of his front-line backups, it's a pretty formidable group. Although four quarterbacks? That's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.