FAAB Fantasy: What it is, strategies, tips, and more

What is a free agent auction budget, and how is FAAB strategy important to your success in dynasty fantasy football leagues?

All fantasy football leagues should use a FAAB waiver system to promote skill and strategy. What is FAAB, and how should managers in dynasty fantasy football leagues use it to benefit their rosters?

What is FAAB in fantasy football?

FAAB stands for Free Agent Auction Budget. It is a waiver system that gives every manager an equal opportunity at picking up free agents off waivers.

FAAB uses a blind bidding system where each manager submits a bid for a player in the form of a dollar amount. Managers organize those bids based on preference. Then, the system awards the free agents to the highest bidders.

How does FAAB work in dynasty fantasy football?

In the regular season, FAAB works the same way it does in redraft. Some dynasty leagues use a continuous waiver system with waivers processing either every day or on specific days. Most leagues treat in-season waivers just like redraft. Players go on waivers as their games kick off and remain there until waivers process Wednesday morning. After that point, they are free agents until they play again.

Where dynasty differs is in allocating your budget. In many dynasty leagues, waivers are year-round. Or, at the very least, they exist for large portions of the offseason. Dynasty fantasy managers are adding and dropping veteran players throughout the offseason.

Managing your budget

Making sure you effectively manage your FAAB is difficult enough during the season. Fantasy managers need to balance the importance of picking up useful players early in the season without burning through their FAAB too soon. In dynasty, it’s even more difficult. That’s why FAAB strategy is important in fantasy football.

Some dynasty leagues will have systems in place to help with budget management. Some leagues have separate budgets for the offseason and the regular season. Most leagues give fantasy managers one budget for the entire season. The year officially switches over either after the NFL season or at some designated point during the spring. FAAB resets and that’s your budget for the season.

Instead of managing a set budget for four months, dynasty managers have to manage that budget for 8-12 months. In the offseason, be careful with your FAAB. Remember, the goal of fantasy football is to win a championship. Sure, your team may not be competitive every year, but you need to acquire players that will help you win. Those are far easier to find and more obvious during the season. If you spend too much of your FAAB before the games, you won’t have enough buying power to win bids on players while games are happening.

At the same time, you can’t be too stingy. Injuries, trades, free agent signings, and the NFL Draft impact player values. This is less common in dynasty because so many players are rostered (often 300+), but what happens when a backup running back suddenly appears to be stepping into a starting role due to an injury? How aggressively do you pursue that player in the offseason?

Know your team goals

How to manage your FAAB is heavily influenced by what your team objective is for the upcoming season. Are you locked and loaded to chase a title? Don’t get distracted by every name that pops up throughout the spring and summer as a potential upside stash. Your focus is on the here and now. A key strategy is to save your FAAB for players that can contribute to your championship push.

Is it a rebuilding year? You can be a little more laissez-faire with your FAAB in the offseason. Take shots on hot names that might surface. Try to hit on some long shots. You won’t need your FAAB as much during the fantasy regular season as you’re not looking to grab those one-year rental players. If at any point you see a player you think might play a role in your team’s long-term success, take the shot if the price is reasonable.

Jason Katz is a Fantasy Analyst at Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter: @jasonkatz13 and find more of his work here.

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