Your lineup has been set, now let's focus on your opponents.
In this tutorial, you'll learn how to evaluate your opponents lineup and use it to your advantage.
Evaluating Your Opponents Lineup
The biggest part of evaluating your opponent's lineup is finding common ground. Is he using multiple players from one team? Are players on your team playing against players on his team? These are the things you should look for.
Using Your Opponent's Lineup Against Them
There are many strategies to be used to your advantage before your weekly matchup.
For example, if your quarterback is Aaron Rodgers and he is playing against the Arizona Cardinals defense, which is one of the worst defenses in the league, you'll definitely get some points there. But what if your opponent is using the Cardinal's defense/special teams? By using Aaron Rodgers, you're getting points for his performance and your opponent loses points the better he plays as well. It's a win-win situation!
One of Aaron Rodgers' favorite wide receivers to throw to is Randall Cobb. Imagine you couldn't manage to draft Cobb, but your opponent did. If Rodgers has a really good day passing the ball, chances are some of that will go to Randall Cobb. You could hope that Rodgers has a good day throwing to other receivers, but some of that could go to Cobb, cancelling out some points Rodgers may earn in return to your opponent.
This is thought of as a conservative strategy as both you and your opponent will get points from Rodgers playing well.
Does your opponent use multiple players from the same team? Let's say your opponent has Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham Jr., quarterback and wide receiver respectively from the Cleveland Browns. The Browns are playing the Jaguars this week who have one of the best defenses in the league. If you happened to have the Jaguars defense/special teams, you could start them and possibly get points from two bad performances on your opponent's team.
This is a big risk however, as the two players could in turn play very well and give you no points from your defense/special teams position. This situation is thought of as a risky strategy, because your players are playing directly against your opponents in the NFL.
Choosing between a conservative and risky strategy for the week depends on your opponent. If your opponent is particularly week, it's best to stick to a conservative strategy. You are expected to beat them, and don't need to do anything crazy to get the win.
However, if you are playing the top team in the league, you will probably have to take some risks in order to win. This is a good time to roster players who are going up against your opponent's players in real life. It could go poorly, but at least it gives you a shot at winning.
The matchup strategy in fantasy football is less prevalent than in other sport since fantasy football leagues are almost always the format of "Head to Head Points". This means you are simply trying to score as many points as possible. In other sports you may play the format "Head to Head Categories" which revolves around beating your opponent in several different statistics. This requires you to consider your opponents' players even more!
These are just some strategies to use your opponent's lineup to your advantage. You could also utilize free agency and the trade block, but we'll talk more on that later.