Michael McKean is an experienced writer with a portfolio that includes work on the subjects of sport, gambling, travel and finance. With a background rooted in journalism, Michael first ventured into the professional writing world based in Switzerland, where he wrote for a number of language and travel sites and magazines before moving into the world of sports writing and gambling sites.
As an avid soccer fan, who follows everything from the Scottish lower leagues to the European elites, he has earned himself a solid reputation as a reliable football betting tipster and predictor. Outside of work, Michael has always gotten involved with grassroutes football everywhere he has worked and lived – UK, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland and Brazil – and still isn’t shy when it comes to pulling the boots on himself. As well as soccer, he has also developed a love of North American sports, particularly ice hockey – a love which began in Switzerland and saw him venture across the pond to follow the NHL. Moving away from dry land, he’s also a keen longboard surfer and is happiest when writing with a view of the ocean.
Daily fantasy sports are a growing industry, with more and more players signing up with the top fantasy sports sites by the day. Being a game of skill, the game is not easy to win at, as so many talented and knowledgeable fantasy managers are entering the market by the day. For that exact reason, we understand that novice playersdefinitely need a little help while getting started.
While experienced managers usually like to work things out on their own, most novice managers should be happy to take a look at a daily fantasy cheat sheet before setting up their lineup. On this page, we explain the concept of fantasy cheat sheets, where you can find them and what kind of advantages players can get by using them.
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What are Fantasy Sports Cheat Sheets?
People who enjoy fantasy sports know how much statistical analysis goes into it at the top level. While pretty much anyone can play the game and simply select lineups based on hunches and personal opinions, the very best fantasy managers don’t do that and instead use maths and statistics along with a little bit of gut feeling to win at the game.
Being good at fantasy sports means breaking down player stats based on past performances in various areas of the game, but the reality is that most people neither have the time or the understanding of mathematics necessary to run such analysis.
This is exactly where fantasy cheat sheets come in, as they are a fantastic tool for fantasy sports newbies who are looking to set up some solid lineups. In the most basic term, a fantasy cheat sheet is a statistical breakdown of all the available players for a particular fantasy sports contest, which is designed to help managers make their picks.
Fantasy cheat sheets are created week in and week out by some of the best fantasy managers out there who run fan sites or various paid fantasy services. Whether free or paid for, fantasy cheat sheets take a lot of work out of a player’s preparation for a fantasy contest and allow players who prefer to just have some fun to keep in good shape against all the fantasy sports geniuses out there.
What to Look for in Fantasy Cheat Sheets
When one looks upon a fantasy football cheat sheet for the first time, they will probably have no idea what they are looking at. However, with a little bit of analysis it quickly becomes obvious that the sheet contains the breakdowns of the various statistical elements of the game, such as:
List of available players in a contest
Projected ranks, points and cost per point
Visual representations of over/under performing players
Performance and salary cap filters
These are only some of the elements one may find in a fantasy cheat sheet. With all of these, managers who don’t have the best understanding of the fantasy world may quickly learn which players stand to make good points and which players are offered at good value, considering their contest salary and the projected number of points.
Remember that cheat sheets are definitely not the holy word and even the analysts creating them can be very wrong at times. However, these projections are usually much more on point than those that most random sports fans would assume, as they take all bias and all prejudice out of the equation and are based on the cold hard facts and statistics.
The main thing one should be looking for in a fantasy cheat sheet is pure value. When we talk about value, we mean points per dollar in salary spent, and this is what cheat sheets are really good for. While it is easy to make assumptions as to which expensive players may perform well, cheat sheets are a great place to find the undervalued players going at a low salary but with high expected performance ratings.
Most players who are just getting into fantasy sports are long term sports fans and many of them believe they know everything there is to know about football or whatever sport they plan on competing in. However, one quickly realizes that the understanding of sports and the understanding of fantasy sports are not the same thing.
Fantasy sports are all about the statistics, the intricate elements of the game and the small subtleties. With more and more statistics analysis software available by the day, the experienced players are getting the kind of information that you simply can’t pull out of your head, giving them a massive advantage over the field.
Back in the day, the statistical analysis was somewhat simple for anyone to do. A simple combination of a few basic stats and the current Vegas lines was enough to determine if a player was good value or not. Today, on the other hand, software can break the game down minute by minute, make predictions on player performances when other players are on or off the pitch etc, making it virtually impossible to process all the stats manually.
While software analysis is something that anyone could do in theory, most people are simply not well versed enough and don’t have the time to spend on such a task. All players who fall into that category are lucky enough to have the ability to simply have a look at a fantasy cheat sheet and immediately get a crunch down of all the most important stats and information for any upcoming contest.
More Fantasy Advice for Novice Players
Fantasy sports cheat sheets are a great way to give yourself an edge when setting up a lineup for an upcoming fantasy contest, but they are far from being enough to make yourself a winning fantasy sports player. If you are new to the game, there are many things to keep an eye out for and we have compiled a short list of the top fantasy sports advice that you should keep in mind while starting out with the game:
Don’t overestimate yourself: If you are new to fantasy sports, chances are you are not that good. Don’t just assume you are better than the more experienced players and take it one step at a time. Play in contests with a lot of new players and try to learn from your mistakes along the way.
Mind your bankroll: One of the crucial skills that a good fantasy sports manager must have is bankroll management. If you run out of money, you won’t be able to enter new contests, so make sure you always have enough of a bankroll to keep playing your favorite contests, even when things are not going as planned.
Don’t worry about variance: Variance is a bit part of fantasy sports and even the best managers run into bad downswings. Accept that this is the way things work and don’t worry about losing some contests. In the long run, you will win if you pick the right lineups.
Look for value: At online fantasy sports sites, there are many additional value spots you will want to take. Look for bonuses, free play tickets and contests with overlay to increase your bottom line. Freerolls also fall into this category if you are just starting out.
Keep on learning: While cheat sheets are a great way to help yourself build a good squad, don’t just rely on them. When you have the time, try to figure out what goes into the analysis behind them and understand the statistics of sports yourself so that you could someday compete at a higher level.
These are just a few of the tips you will want to keep in mind if you are just starting out with fantasy sports. If you can apply these tips and find some good cheat sheets, you should be good to start playing fantasy sports and competing in the lower buyin contests. For even more tips, check out our daily fantasy strategy page which offers even more novice and pro tips for daily money fantasy leagues.
Fantasy Championships are popular in the industry. The NFBC and the NFFC are two of the most popular championship events. However, for a good fantasy draft a solid fantasy draft board is necessary.
Get Your Fantasy On
You have read the basic tips, found your cheat sheets and you are ready to jump into the action? If so, we encourage you to have a look at our list of the top fantasy sports sites and find the best site or mobile fantasy sports app to start your fantasy sports journey. The page features the top rated American fantasy sports sites and offers a deep insight into the way you should pick the place to play at, so head on over and start your fantasy career today!
Conclusion: Always Keep Your Cheat Sheet Handy
Fantasy cheat sheets are some of the best tools that novice managers can use to give themselves an edge. Make sure you always search the internet and find the best fantasy cheat sheet you can before you jump into any contest. With the sheets and our pro advice, you will quickly be on your way to fantasy sports greatness.