"Ranking" is a term used to describe the systematic process of sorting things based off their value. In fantasy football, it is the players that are ranked, and it is done so according to their skill and fantasy value.
Before every season fantasy football experts and gurus compile rankings of players in the upcoming year's draft. Those rankings take into account a player's past performance as well as their current situation on their team. The lists rank players by what stats they are predicted to get in the upcoming season and can be sorted by position as well.
We've mentioned it before, but here it is imperative: get to know the best players in the league. It would be very embarrassing if you took a backup quarterback number one in the draft instead of an elite arm.
It is also recommended to have a cheat sheet, a sheet with information about each player. Cheat sheets are a good place to keep fantasy football rankings. Most websites supply a cheat sheet when drafting on their website, but it won't be hard to find one online if needed.
There are multiple television and web shows dedicated to fantasy football and they spend weeks creating their rankings. Watching these shows can also give you enough insight where you can begin to make your own rankings.
In Season Rankings
Fantasy football season rankings follow the same concept, but differ slightly from pre-draft rankings. The in season rankings are based on the player's production to that point. Players who have outperformed their beginning of the season projections will rise on the rankings, while those that have disappointed will drop.
These rankings are useful when deciding what players to add and drop as well as potentially making a trade with another team. Waiver wires are often sorted by rankings, and the best available players appear at the top of the page. It makes acquiring the best available players easier.