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2011 Draft Prep: Our 12-team, $100 auction

Senior Fantasy Writer

For some Fantasy owners, snake drafts just aren't exciting. For them, there are auctions.

Auctions give every Fantasy owner the same opportunity at every NFL player. Auctions make for a more challenging way to build a Fantasy team. Auctions favor the bold -- the highest bidder gets the player, for better or for worse.

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It's a fun enhancement that Fantasy drafters should consider ( even has mock auctions, in case you'd like to try it out). But it's not without strategy, just like any other Fantasy Football draft.

Shop smart. If you spend too soon, you'll have no shot at the inevitable bargains that exist late in every single auction. If you don't spend early on, you'll have no shot at the stud players inevitably nominated in the first few minutes in every single auction. Knowing who you want, and more importantly, knowing what the players you want should go for, is absolutely vital to Fantasy success. Consult our auction values to get a good idea of what the going rate is from player to player.

Be ready for the bargains. Like in snake drafts, the bargains in auctions generally happen late, not early. If you want in on some of those bargains it's a good idea to save at least 30 percent of your overall budget for the last third of your auction.

Don't drive up bids or mistakenly bid on players you don't need. Bid on the guys you want, not the guys other people want. If you own Antonio Gates, don't bid on Dallas Clark just so they go at the same price. It's better to let another owner get a bargain than for you to clog your roster with too many players at the same position.

If you're on the fence, spend. Bidding the extra dollar or two to get the player you want is always advised so long as you're not going to be forced to add $1 players to more than four roster spots. The difference between getting quality starters and a couple of $2 steals that someone else might otherwise get for $1 is negligible.

Follow the money. Fantasy dollars are not unlimited -- you're on a budget. As such, you'll have to know what your maximum bid is at all times, and if you're really good, you'll want to keep track of what the max bid is for your rival owners too. Typically, no player will go for more than 35 percent of a total budget, and every team will end up with at least a handful of $1 players.

Why you need to read us ...
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2009 honored by the N.Y. Times/ Rankings Accuracy Challenge
Recognized for Best Article in Major Media by the FSWA

Early on, nominate players you don't want: If you're trying to cut back on spending, or if you just want other owners to drain their funds, nominate players who you have no intention of winning. For instance, if you just won Aaron Rodgers, you're set at quarterback. But if you nominate Michael Vick and start the bidding at a dollar, someone else will start unloading their money. The more your opponents spend, the less they'll have to take bargains from you later on. You could even look over the roster of the owner with the biggest budget left, uncover their needs and nominate players they might flash their cash for. When the draft enters the bargain zone, that's when you'll want to nominate the players you want and potentially bid an extra buck or two to sway opponents from taking the player you like.

Check out our auction!

To give you the feel of this kind of format, rounded up 12 experts with auction experience. On Aug. 24, we gave everyone $100 to spend on 15 roster spots, starting one quarterback, two running backs, two wide receivers, one tight end, one flex, one kicker and one DST.

Our nomination order
1. Bill Passonno, Fantasy Writer 7. Al Melchior, Data Analyst
2. Ed Gauna, Fantasy Writer 8. Jeff Tobin, Associate Managing Editor, Fantasy
3. John Garcia, Fantasy Writer 9. Eric Kay, Associate Managing Editor,
4. Scott White, Senior Fantasy Writer 10. Jamey Eisenberg, Senior Fantasy Writer
5. Nathan Zegura, Fantasy Writer 11. Adam Aizer, Podcast Host
6. Dave Richard, Senior Fantasy Writer 12. Sergio Gonzalez, Fantasy Writer
Sound off on our auction: Facebook | Twitter | Message Board

2011 Fantasy Auction Draft (sortable)
OrderPlayerPriceBid Won by
180Smith, Alfonso (RB ARI)$1Bill Passonno
179Burleson, Nate (WR DET)$1Al Melchior
178Cook, Jared (TE TEN)$1Bill Passonno
177Helu, Roy (RB WAS)$1Al Melchior
176Hester, Devin (WR CHI)$1Bill Passonno
175Mason, Derrick (WR NYJ)$1Sergio Gonzalez
174Knox, Johnny (WR CHI)$1Al Melchior
173Snelling, Jason (RB ATL)$1Bill Passonno
172Williams, Cadillac (RB STL)$1Sergio Gonzalez
171Williams, Ricky (RB BAL)$1Eric Kay
170Garrard, David (QB JAC)$1Al Melchior
169Morris, Maurice (RB DET)$1Dave Richard
168Murray, DeMarco (RB DAL)$1Nathan Zegura
167Cundiff, Billy (K BAL)$1Scott White
166Carpenter, Dan (K MIA)$1John Garcia
165Henery, Alex (K PHI)$1Bill Passonno
164Miller, Zach (TE SEA)$1Sergio Gonzalez
163Saints (DST NO)$1Jamey Eisenberg
162Smith, Alex (QB SF)$1Eric Kay
161Branch, Deion (WR NE)$1Jeff Tobin
160Tomlinson, LaDainian (RB NYJ)$1Al Melchior
159Redman, Isaac (RB PIT)$1Dave Richard
158Brown, Josh (K STL)$1Nathan Zegura
157Torain, Ryan (RB WAS)$1Scott White
156Chargers (DST SD)$1John Garcia
155Breaston, Steve (WR KC)$1Bill Passonno
154Jones, Thomas (RB KC)$1Sergio Gonzalez
153Starks, James (RB GB)$1Jamey Eisenberg
152Driver, Donald (WR GB)$1Eric Kay
151Cassel, Matt (QB KC)$1Jeff Tobin
150Crabtree, Michael (WR SF)$1Al Melchior
149Jennings, Rashad (RB JAC)$2Jamey Eisenberg
148Lions (DST DET)$1Nathan Zegura
147Sims-Walker, Mike (WR STL)$2Nathan Zegura
146Tate, Ben (RB HOU)$1John Garcia
145Jean, Lestar (WR HOU)$2Ed Gauna
144Ringer, Javon (RB TEN)$2Dave Richard
143Smith, Steve (WR CAR)$1Sergio Gonzalez
142Moss, Santana (WR WAS)$3Scott White
141McCoy, Colt (QB CLE)$2John Garcia
140Sproles, Darren (RB NO)$1Jeff Tobin
139Bess, Davone (WR MIA)$2Jeff Tobin
138Orton, Kyle (QB DEN)$1Dave Richard
137Vinatieri, Adam (K IND)$1Nathan Zegura
136Evans, Lee (WR BAL)$1Scott White
135Ford, Jacoby (WR OAK)$1John Garcia
134Celek, Brent (TE PHI)$1Ed Gauna
133Ward, Hines (WR PIT)$2Ed Gauna
132Sanchez, Mark (QB NYJ)$1Sergio Gonzalez
131Floyd, Malcom (WR SD)$1Adam Aizer
130Kolb, Kevin (QB ARI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
129Gonzalez, Tony (TE ATL)$1Eric Kay
128Simpson, Jerome (WR CIN)$1Jeff Tobin
127Ochocinco, Chad (WR NE)$3Eric Kay
126Garcon, Pierre (WR IND)$2Ed Gauna
125Hernandez, Aaron (TE NE)$1Nathan Zegura
124Gronkowski, Rob (TE NE)$1Scott White
123Little, Greg (WR CLE)$1John Garcia
122Edwards, Braylon (WR SF)$3Ed Gauna
121Britt, Kenny (WR TEN)$3Bill Passonno
120Bears (DST CHI)$1Sergio Gonzalez
119Hightower, Tim (RB WAS)$4Ed Gauna
118Cutler, Jay (QB CHI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
117Flacco, Joe (QB BAL)$3Bill Passonno
116Moore, Lance (WR NO)$4Nathan Zegura
115Woodhead, Danny (RB NE)$1Al Melchior
114Stewart, Jonathan (RB CAR)$4Jeff Tobin
113Graham, Jimmy (TE NO)$6Adam Aizer
112Olsen, Greg (TE CAR)$3Jamey Eisenberg
111Thomas, Pierre (RB NO)$3John Garcia
110Jacobs, Brandon (RB NYG)$3Jamey Eisenberg
109Collie, Austin (WR IND)$3Jeff Tobin
108Rice, Sidney (WR SEA)$4Sergio Gonzalez
107Thomas, Mike (WR JAC)$3Adam Aizer
106Brown, Ronnie (RB PHI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
105McGahee, Willis (RB DEN)$3Ed Gauna
104Cowboys (DST DAL)$1Jeff Tobin
103Addai, Joseph (RB IND)$5Adam Aizer
102Broncos (DST DEN)$1Dave Richard
101Daniels, Owen (TE HOU)$4Sergio Gonzalez
100Pettigrew, Brandon (TE DET)$2John Garcia
99Spiller, C.J. (RB BUF)$4Eric Kay
98Maclin, Jeremy (WR PHI)$5Dave Richard
97Lloyd, Brandon (WR DEN)$6Nathan Zegura
96Kaeding, Nate (K SD)$1Sergio Gonzalez
95Jackson, Fred (RB BUF)$6Al Melchior
94Bryant, Matt (K ATL)$1Jamey Eisenberg
93Lynch, Marshawn (RB SEA)$7Eric Kay
92Jones, Julio (WR ATL)$7Jeff Tobin
91Wells, Beanie (RB ARI)$5Scott White
90Bradford, Sam (QB STL)$5Adam Aizer
89Colston, Marques (WR NO)$7Dave Richard
88Patriots (DST NE)$1Scott White
87Tolbert, Mike (RB SD)$7Dave Richard
86Green, A.J. (WR CIN)$2Scott White
85Harvin, Percy (WR MIN)$7John Garcia
84Winslow, Kellen (TE TB)$2Eric Kay
83Marshall, Brandon (WR MIA)$11Eric Kay
82Roethlisberger, Ben (QB PIT)$7Adam Aizer
81Jones, Felix (RB DAL)$12Bill Passonno
80Boldin, Anquan (WR BAL)$7Sergio Gonzalez
79Giants (DST NYG)$1Al Melchior
78Ravens (DST BAL)$2Ed Gauna
77Davis, Vernon (TE SF)$4Al Melchior
76Jets (DST NYJ)$3Bill Passonno
75Bush, Reggie (RB MIA)$4John Garcia
74Burress, Plaxico (WR NYJ)$5Jeff Tobin
73Grant, Ryan (RB GB)$4Adam Aizer
72Bryant, Dez (WR DAL)$9Bill Passonno
71Roberts, Andre (WR ARI)$1Adam Aizer
70Schaub, Matt (QB HOU)$6Scott White
69Holmes, Santonio (WR NYJ)$10John Garcia
68Williams, DeAngelo (RB CAR)$11Nathan Zegura
67Moreno, Knowshon (RB DEN)$9Dave Richard
66Bush, Michael (RB OAK)$4Nathan Zegura
65Austin, Miles (WR DAL)$13Nathan Zegura
64Eagles (DST PHI)$2Adam Aizer
63Thomas, Daniel (RB MIA)$7Adam Aizer
62Witten, Jason (TE DAL)$7Bill Passonno
61Jackson, DeSean (WR PHI)$13Eric Kay
60Manningham, Mario (WR NYG)$7Scott White
59Manning, Eli (QB NYG)$3Scott White
58Lewis, Marcedes (TE JAC)$1Jamey Eisenberg
57Johnson, Steve (WR BUF)$6Eric Kay
56Bradshaw, Ahmad (RB NYG)$16Nathan Zegura
55Forte, Matt (RB CHI)$23Ed Gauna
54Ryan, Matt (QB ATL)$7Ed Gauna
53Jackson, Vincent (WR SD)$17Adam Aizer
52Wallace, Mike (WR PIT)$16Jamey Eisenberg
51Best, Jahvid (RB DET)$12Bill Passonno
50Greene, Shonn (RB NYJ)$12Nathan Zegura
49Ingram, Mark (RB NO)$10Jamey Eisenberg
48Benson, Cedric (RB CIN)$9Sergio Gonzalez
47Romo, Tony (QB DAL)$8John Garcia
46Green-Ellis, BenJarvus (RB NE)$9Adam Aizer
45Welker, Wes (WR NE)$10Scott White
44Johnson, Calvin (WR DET)$27Bill Passonno
43Crosby, Mason (K GB)$1Al Melchior
42Johnson, Andre (WR HOU)$26Jamey Eisenberg
41McCoy, LeSean (RB PHI)$28Jamey Eisenberg
40White, Roddy (WR ATL)$21Al Melchior
39Amendola, Danny (WR STL)$5Jamey Eisenberg
38Gould, Robbie (K CHI)$1Ed Gauna
37Jackson, Steven (RB STL)$17Ed Gauna
36Clark, Dallas (TE IND)$8Dave Richard
35Freeman, Josh (QB TB)$4Dave Richard
34Jones-Drew, Maurice (RB JAC)$21Sergio Gonzalez
33Mathews, Ryan (RB SD)$9Nathan Zegura
32Williams, Mike (WR TB)$12John Garcia
31Nicks, Hakeem (WR NYG)$17Dave Richard
30Wayne, Reggie (WR IND)$14Al Melchior
29Brady, Tom (QB NE)$22Ed Gauna
28Stafford, Matthew (QB DET)$11Jeff Tobin
27Jennings, Greg (WR GB)$19Adam Aizer
26Fitzgerald, Larry (WR ARI)$19Dave Richard
25McFadden, Darren (RB OAK)$17Dave Richard
24Gates, Antonio (TE SD)$12Jeff Tobin
23Mendenhall, Rashard (RB PIT)$16Scott White
22Turner, Michael (RB ATL)$24Al Melchior
21Hillis, Peyton (RB CLE)$13Scott White
20Rice, Ray (RB BAL)$31Eric Kay
19Packers (DST GB)$4Ed Gauna
18Janikowski, Sebastian (K OAK)$1Dave Richard
17Blount, LeGarrette (RB TB)$17John Garcia
16Brees, Drew (QB NO)$18Bill Passonno
15Gore, Frank (RB SF)$18Jeff Tobin
14Finley, Jermichael (TE GB)$7Ed Gauna
13Bowe, Dwayne (WR KC)$11Adam Aizer
12Johnson, Chris (RB TEN)$26Sergio Gonzalez
11Gostkowski, Stephen (K NE)$1Adam Aizer
10Manning, Peyton (QB IND)$15Eric Kay
9Hartley, Garrett (K NO)$1Eric Kay
8Charles, Jamaal (RB KC)$27Jeff Tobin
7Rivers, Philip (QB SD)$18Nathan Zegura
6Rackers, Neil (K HOU)$2Jeff Tobin
5Peterson, Adrian (RB MIN)$30John Garcia
4Steelers (DST PIT)$3Eric Kay
3Foster, Arian (RB HOU)$30Scott White
2Rodgers, Aaron (QB GB)$22Al Melchior
1Vick, Michael (QB PHI)$20Sergio Gonzalez

Sound off on our auction: Facebook | Twitter | Message Board

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyFB . You can also follow Dave at @daverichard and on Facebook .

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Player News
Giants LB Jameel McClain (knee) questionable to return Sunday
by R.J. White |
(11:04 pm ET) Giants linebacker Jameel McClain is questionable to return to Sunday's game against the Cowboys with a knee injury, the team announced. McClain has just three total tackles in the game before suffering the injury, with the last coming in the middle of the third quarter.

Julian Edelman back to being PPR stud
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(11:03 pm ET) Maybe for some PPR owners, Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman never lost must-start status, but with his role limiting his scoring potential and capping his yardage from week to week, he needs to have bunches of catches to keep that distinction. And for a while there, he wasn't getting them.

To be more specific, during a five-game stretch spanning Weeks 4-8, he averaged 4.6 catches for 41.4 yards. And considering he had a nine-catch, 91-yard performance mixed in there, you can imagine how yucky the other four were.

But in three games since, he has averaged 8.3 catches for 76.0 yards, looking more like the player we saw the first three weeks of the season. His performance Week 12 against Detroit was especially encouraging. He was targeted 15 times, catching 11 passes for 89 yards.

Now, if you play in a standard Fantasy league, the occasional 80-yard game isn't going to do much for you, but if you play in a PPR league, a consistent 5-10 catches, which Edelman has gotten back to delivering recently, is a pretty big deal. Time to get him active again.

Broncos' Wes Welker scores touchdown in Week 12 win
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(11:00 pm ET) Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker was on the receiving end of a 2-yard touchdown pass from Peyton Manning to help the Broncos beat the Dolphins 39-36 Week 12.

The touchdown prevented Welker from having a completely dismal performance against his former team. Welker caught all four his targets for 18 yards. Welker has yet to record a 100-yard receiving game this season.

The Broncos will play at Kansas City Week 13.

LeGarrette Blount makes Jonas Gray an afterthought
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(10:50 pm ET) This take on both LeGarrette Blount and Jonas Gray comes with an important caveat: Both running backs play for the Patriots, who are coached by Bill Belichick, who has proven time and time again that he'll do whatever he wants, regardless of conventional wisdom or media pressure. So if he decides Gray has learned his lesson for showing up late to practice Friday and turns back to him as the team's primary ball carrier Week 13 at Green Bay, it would come as a surprise to no one.

But I'm certainly not counting on it.

Facing the league's No. 1 run defense, Blount was really good Week 12 against Detroit, rushing 12 times for 78 yards and two touchdowns only three days after signing with the Patriots. Granted, he was with them last year and knows the offense, but still, bonus points for the quick turnaround.

Belichick loved giving him the ball at the goal line last year and clearly doesn't owe Gray anything. Gray was clearly a right-place-at-the-right-time guy, getting a starter's workload in an offense where he could do no wrong only because Stevan Ridley suffered a season-ending injury. And he blew it.

Let's hold on to him one more week just to be sure, but you wouldn't want to start Gray in Week 13. And if Blount is available in your league, pick him up.

Calvin Johnson, Golden Tate won't ruin each other
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(10:31 pm ET) During the six games in which Calvin Johnson was either sidelined or compromised by an ankle injury, fellow Lions wide receiver Golden Tate emerged as a must-start Fantasy option, averaging 8.3 catches for 118.0 yards. But the ride appeared to end with Johnson's return Week 11 at Arizona. Not only did Tate catch just two passes for 41 yards, but he was targeted just twice.

Both players got double-digit targets Week 12 at New England, however, and Tate was back to being the more productive of the two, gaining 97 yards on four catches. Johnson was no slouch, picking up 58 on four catches of his own. If quarterback Matthew Stafford had completed more than just 18 of his 46 passes, imagine the numbers those two would have put up.

The matchup had something to do with it, though. The Patriots ranked high against the pass prior to their recent matchups against the Colts, Broncos and Bears. Considering Tate was going against star defensive back Darrelle Revis and Johnson was double covered much of the afternoon, both put up respectable numbers.

Which means both could be in for big numbers with a favorable matchup Week 13 against Chicago. With the way Tate bounced back, I'd consider both must-starts in Fantasy.

49ers' Phil Dawson has quiet day in Week 12 win
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(10:23 pm ET) 49ers kicker Phil Dawson converted his only field goal attempt in San Francisco’s Week 12 win against Washington.

Dawson connected from 41 yards and also made both of his extra point attempts. The 49ers play Seattle Week 13.

Redskins' Kai Forbath converts both field goals in Week 12 loss
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(10:19 pm ET) Redskins kicker Kai Forbath made both of his field goal attempts in his team’s 17-13 loss to San Francisco Week 12.

Forbath connected from 27 and 46 yards and made his only extra point attempt. The Redskins play at Indianapolis Week 13.

Redskins' DeSean Jackson struggles in Week 12 loss
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(10:13 pm ET) With the Redskins lacking consistent quarterback play, production from wide receiver DeSean Jackson has started to suffer.

Jackson was targeted five times, hauling in just two receptions and 39 yards during Washington's 17-13 loss to San Francisco. It was the second consecutive week Jackson has failed to produce even mediocre numbers after posting four receptions for 35 yards Week 11. The Redskins play at Indianapolis Week 13.

Last straw for Matthew Stafford?
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(10:08 pm ET) Here's the thing: If you've been starting Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford in Fantasy all this time, your season is probably just about over anyway. He's contributed multiple scores in only five of 11 games this season, and he just had his second straight with no scores at all Week 12 at New England. At a position where the minimum expectation is two scores in a standard 12-team league -- and some of the best are liable to have three or four -- that's a backbreaker.

Of course, Stafford himself has been one of the best of the best before. In 2011, he threw for 5,038 yards and 41 touchdowns. But that was three years ago. Any hope of a coaching change helping him recapture that form is long gone now.

To some degree, you could have seen his last two games coming given the matchups. The Patriots and Cardinals have two of the more opportunistic pass defenses in football. But interceptions weren't as much the problem for Stafford in those games as a lack of touchdown passes. Zero over a two-game stretch is unacceptable for a presumed top-12 quarterback, regardless of the competition.

But all that being said ... he's going against a Bears defense in Week 13 that has been absolutely dreadful against the pass, he has two of probably the NFL's best 25 wide receivers in Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate, and he had his best three-game stretch of the season prior to these last two games. If you've stuck it out this long with him, might as well go down with the ship, right?

Redskins' Alfred Morris carries offense in Week 12 loss
by Sean d'Oliveira |
(10:07 pm ET) Redskins running back Alfred Morris was the lone bright spot during Washington’s 17-13 Week 12 loss to San Francisco.

Morris produced 125 rushing yards on 21 carries and one touchdown. The 125 rushing yards was the first time Morris rushed for more than 100 yards this season. He also caught one pass on one target for five yards.

Over the last three games, Morris is averaging more than 100 rushing yards per game. In Week 13, the Redskins play at Indianapolis.