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

Senior Fantasy Writer
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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 (CBSSports.com 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 ...
2010
Our Jamey Eisenberg was recognized for his accuracy.
2010
Our Dave Richard named a finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year
2009
CBSSports.com honored by the N.Y. Times/FantasyFootballLibrarian.com Rankings Accuracy Challenge
2008
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, CBSSports.com 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, CBSSports.com
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
1Vick, Michael (QB PHI)$20Sergio Gonzalez
12Johnson, Chris (RB TEN)$26Sergio Gonzalez
34Jones-Drew, Maurice (RB JAC)$21Sergio Gonzalez
48Benson, Cedric (RB CIN)$9Sergio Gonzalez
80Boldin, Anquan (WR BAL)$7Sergio Gonzalez
96Kaeding, Nate (K SD)$1Sergio Gonzalez
101Daniels, Owen (TE HOU)$4Sergio Gonzalez
108Rice, Sidney (WR SEA)$4Sergio Gonzalez
120Bears (DST CHI)$1Sergio Gonzalez
132Sanchez, Mark (QB NYJ)$1Sergio Gonzalez
143Smith, Steve (WR CAR)$1Sergio Gonzalez
154Jones, Thomas (RB KC)$1Sergio Gonzalez
164Miller, Zach (TE SEA)$1Sergio Gonzalez
172Williams, Cadillac (RB STL)$1Sergio Gonzalez
175Mason, Derrick (WR NYJ)$1Sergio Gonzalez
3Foster, Arian (RB HOU)$30Scott White
21Hillis, Peyton (RB CLE)$13Scott White
23Mendenhall, Rashard (RB PIT)$16Scott White
45Welker, Wes (WR NE)$10Scott White
59Manning, Eli (QB NYG)$3Scott White
60Manningham, Mario (WR NYG)$7Scott White
70Schaub, Matt (QB HOU)$6Scott White
86Green, A.J. (WR CIN)$2Scott White
88Patriots (DST NE)$1Scott White
91Wells, Beanie (RB ARI)$5Scott White
124Gronkowski, Rob (TE NE)$1Scott White
136Evans, Lee (WR BAL)$1Scott White
142Moss, Santana (WR WAS)$3Scott White
157Torain, Ryan (RB WAS)$1Scott White
167Cundiff, Billy (K BAL)$1Scott White
7Rivers, Philip (QB SD)$18Nathan Zegura
33Mathews, Ryan (RB SD)$9Nathan Zegura
50Greene, Shonn (RB NYJ)$12Nathan Zegura
56Bradshaw, Ahmad (RB NYG)$16Nathan Zegura
65Austin, Miles (WR DAL)$13Nathan Zegura
66Bush, Michael (RB OAK)$4Nathan Zegura
68Williams, DeAngelo (RB CAR)$11Nathan Zegura
97Lloyd, Brandon (WR DEN)$6Nathan Zegura
116Moore, Lance (WR NO)$4Nathan Zegura
125Hernandez, Aaron (TE NE)$1Nathan Zegura
137Vinatieri, Adam (K IND)$1Nathan Zegura
147Sims-Walker, Mike (WR STL)$2Nathan Zegura
148Lions (DST DET)$1Nathan Zegura
158Brown, Josh (K STL)$1Nathan Zegura
168Murray, DeMarco (RB DAL)$1Nathan Zegura
5Peterson, Adrian (RB MIN)$30John Garcia
17Blount, LeGarrette (RB TB)$17John Garcia
32Williams, Mike (WR TB)$12John Garcia
47Romo, Tony (QB DAL)$8John Garcia
69Holmes, Santonio (WR NYJ)$10John Garcia
75Bush, Reggie (RB MIA)$4John Garcia
85Harvin, Percy (WR MIN)$7John Garcia
100Pettigrew, Brandon (TE DET)$2John Garcia
111Thomas, Pierre (RB NO)$3John Garcia
123Little, Greg (WR CLE)$1John Garcia
135Ford, Jacoby (WR OAK)$1John Garcia
141McCoy, Colt (QB CLE)$2John Garcia
146Tate, Ben (RB HOU)$1John Garcia
156Chargers (DST SD)$1John Garcia
166Carpenter, Dan (K MIA)$1John Garcia
6Rackers, Neil (K HOU)$2Jeff Tobin
8Charles, Jamaal (RB KC)$27Jeff Tobin
15Gore, Frank (RB SF)$18Jeff Tobin
24Gates, Antonio (TE SD)$12Jeff Tobin
28Stafford, Matthew (QB DET)$11Jeff Tobin
74Burress, Plaxico (WR NYJ)$5Jeff Tobin
92Jones, Julio (WR ATL)$7Jeff Tobin
104Cowboys (DST DAL)$1Jeff Tobin
109Collie, Austin (WR IND)$3Jeff Tobin
114Stewart, Jonathan (RB CAR)$4Jeff Tobin
128Simpson, Jerome (WR CIN)$1Jeff Tobin
139Bess, Davone (WR MIA)$2Jeff Tobin
140Sproles, Darren (RB NO)$1Jeff Tobin
151Cassel, Matt (QB KC)$1Jeff Tobin
161Branch, Deion (WR NE)$1Jeff Tobin
39Amendola, Danny (WR STL)$5Jamey Eisenberg
41McCoy, LeSean (RB PHI)$28Jamey Eisenberg
42Johnson, Andre (WR HOU)$26Jamey Eisenberg
49Ingram, Mark (RB NO)$10Jamey Eisenberg
52Wallace, Mike (WR PIT)$16Jamey Eisenberg
58Lewis, Marcedes (TE JAC)$1Jamey Eisenberg
94Bryant, Matt (K ATL)$1Jamey Eisenberg
106Brown, Ronnie (RB PHI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
110Jacobs, Brandon (RB NYG)$3Jamey Eisenberg
112Olsen, Greg (TE CAR)$3Jamey Eisenberg
118Cutler, Jay (QB CHI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
130Kolb, Kevin (QB ARI)$1Jamey Eisenberg
149Jennings, Rashad (RB JAC)$2Jamey Eisenberg
153Starks, James (RB GB)$1Jamey Eisenberg
163Saints (DST NO)$1Jamey Eisenberg
4Steelers (DST PIT)$3Eric Kay
9Hartley, Garrett (K NO)$1Eric Kay
10Manning, Peyton (QB IND)$15Eric Kay
20Rice, Ray (RB BAL)$31Eric Kay
57Johnson, Steve (WR BUF)$6Eric Kay
61Jackson, DeSean (WR PHI)$13Eric Kay
83Marshall, Brandon (WR MIA)$11Eric Kay
84Winslow, Kellen (TE TB)$2Eric Kay
93Lynch, Marshawn (RB SEA)$7Eric Kay
99Spiller, C.J. (RB BUF)$4Eric Kay
127Ochocinco, Chad (WR NE)$3Eric Kay
129Gonzalez, Tony (TE ATL)$1Eric Kay
152Driver, Donald (WR GB)$1Eric Kay
162Smith, Alex (QB SF)$1Eric Kay
171Williams, Ricky (RB BAL)$1Eric Kay
14Finley, Jermichael (TE GB)$7Ed Gauna
19Packers (DST GB)$4Ed Gauna
29Brady, Tom (QB NE)$22Ed Gauna
37Jackson, Steven (RB STL)$17Ed Gauna
38Gould, Robbie (K CHI)$1Ed Gauna
54Ryan, Matt (QB ATL)$7Ed Gauna
55Forte, Matt (RB CHI)$23Ed Gauna
78Ravens (DST BAL)$2Ed Gauna
105McGahee, Willis (RB DEN)$3Ed Gauna
119Hightower, Tim (RB WAS)$4Ed Gauna
122Edwards, Braylon (WR SF)$3Ed Gauna
126Garcon, Pierre (WR IND)$2Ed Gauna
133Ward, Hines (WR PIT)$2Ed Gauna
134Celek, Brent (TE PHI)$1Ed Gauna
145Jean, Lestar (WR HOU)$2Ed Gauna
18Janikowski, Sebastian (K OAK)$1Dave Richard
25McFadden, Darren (RB OAK)$17Dave Richard
26Fitzgerald, Larry (WR ARI)$19Dave Richard
31Nicks, Hakeem (WR NYG)$17Dave Richard
35Freeman, Josh (QB TB)$4Dave Richard
36Clark, Dallas (TE IND)$8Dave Richard
67Moreno, Knowshon (RB DEN)$9Dave Richard
87Tolbert, Mike (RB SD)$7Dave Richard
89Colston, Marques (WR NO)$7Dave Richard
98Maclin, Jeremy (WR PHI)$5Dave Richard
102Broncos (DST DEN)$1Dave Richard
138Orton, Kyle (QB DEN)$1Dave Richard
144Ringer, Javon (RB TEN)$2Dave Richard
159Redman, Isaac (RB PIT)$1Dave Richard
169Morris, Maurice (RB DET)$1Dave Richard
16Brees, Drew (QB NO)$18Bill Passonno
44Johnson, Calvin (WR DET)$27Bill Passonno
51Best, Jahvid (RB DET)$12Bill Passonno
62Witten, Jason (TE DAL)$7Bill Passonno
72Bryant, Dez (WR DAL)$9Bill Passonno
76Jets (DST NYJ)$3Bill Passonno
81Jones, Felix (RB DAL)$12Bill Passonno
117Flacco, Joe (QB BAL)$3Bill Passonno
121Britt, Kenny (WR TEN)$3Bill Passonno
155Breaston, Steve (WR KC)$1Bill Passonno
165Henery, Alex (K PHI)$1Bill Passonno
173Snelling, Jason (RB ATL)$1Bill Passonno
176Hester, Devin (WR CHI)$1Bill Passonno
178Cook, Jared (TE TEN)$1Bill Passonno
180Smith, Alfonso (RB ARI)$1Bill Passonno
2Rodgers, Aaron (QB GB)$22Al Melchior
22Turner, Michael (RB ATL)$24Al Melchior
30Wayne, Reggie (WR IND)$14Al Melchior
40White, Roddy (WR ATL)$21Al Melchior
43Crosby, Mason (K GB)$1Al Melchior
77Davis, Vernon (TE SF)$4Al Melchior
79Giants (DST NYG)$1Al Melchior
95Jackson, Fred (RB BUF)$6Al Melchior
115Woodhead, Danny (RB NE)$1Al Melchior
150Crabtree, Michael (WR SF)$1Al Melchior
160Tomlinson, LaDainian (RB NYJ)$1Al Melchior
170Garrard, David (QB JAC)$1Al Melchior
174Knox, Johnny (WR CHI)$1Al Melchior
177Helu, Roy (RB WAS)$1Al Melchior
179Burleson, Nate (WR DET)$1Al Melchior
11Gostkowski, Stephen (K NE)$1Adam Aizer
13Bowe, Dwayne (WR KC)$11Adam Aizer
27Jennings, Greg (WR GB)$19Adam Aizer
46Green-Ellis, BenJarvus (RB NE)$9Adam Aizer
53Jackson, Vincent (WR SD)$17Adam Aizer
63Thomas, Daniel (RB MIA)$7Adam Aizer
64Eagles (DST PHI)$2Adam Aizer
71Roberts, Andre (WR ARI)$1Adam Aizer
73Grant, Ryan (RB GB)$4Adam Aizer
82Roethlisberger, Ben (QB PIT)$7Adam Aizer
90Bradford, Sam (QB STL)$5Adam Aizer
103Addai, Joseph (RB IND)$5Adam Aizer
107Thomas, Mike (WR JAC)$3Adam Aizer
113Graham, Jimmy (TE NO)$6Adam Aizer
131Floyd, Malcom (WR SD)$1Adam Aizer

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
Alfred Morris running into tough matchup
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(5:57 pm ET) For as good as Alfred Morris is, owning him in Fantasy can leave you disappointed at times, given the Redskins' sometimes-inconsistent usage of him. You might want to skip the headache in Week 5, with the Seahawks on the way Monday night.

Morris has been productive in each game so far, and currently ranks fifth in the NFL in rushing yardage through four games. Unfortunately, he faces one of the toughest tests in the league this week. The Seahawks have yet to allow an opposing running back to score even six points this season, and their lone touchdown allowed came from little-used Packers fullback John Kuhn in Week 1. Morris has yet to face Seattle in his career, and they are unlikely to give him a very warm welcome.

Morris is nearly a must-start Fantasy option on a weekly basis, but this is one time you might want to avoid relying on him. The workload should be there, but Morris ranks outside of the top-30 for running backs in both Jamey Eisenberg and Dave Richard's Week 5 rankings.   


Jets add LeQuan Lewis, subtract Brandon Smith
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:55 pm ET) The Jets signed cornerback LeQuan Lewis to their practice squad and released corner Brandon Smith from the squad, reports the New York Daily News.

Panthers add Tauren Poole, Horace Miller to practice squad
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:50 pm ET) The Panthers signed running back Tauren Poole and linebacker Horace Miller to their practice squad.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins an interesting long-term prospect
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(5:48 pm ET) Buccaneers tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins returned from a foot injury and immediately served as a key part of the offense in Week 4. Does the rookie second-rounder have sleeper Fantasy potential moving forward?

Seferian-Jenkins was targeted on seven of quarterback Mike Glennon's 42 throws in Sunday's game, a number that left him third on the team. He brought in three of those passes, a decent number considering Glennon struggled with his accuracy all game. The fact that Glennon looked his way so often might be a good sign, since it was the pair's first game together.

After a collegiate career that saw him total 1,840 yards in three seasons, Seferian-Jenkins has a chance to become a big part of this Tampa Bay offense. However, he obviously has a lot to prove before you want to rely on him. Keep an eye on Seferian-Jenkins' play in Week 5 against the Saints, and consider adding him if he and Glennon show a good rapport. 


Lions put Montell Owens on IR
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:47 pm ET) The Lions put running back Montell Owens on injured reserve with a hamstring injury, ending his season.

LaMichael James signs with Dolphins
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:42 pm ET) Former 49ers running back LaMichael James signed with the Dolphins, reports Fox Sports. San Francisco released the oft-injured back following the season opener.

Luke Willson has a lot to prove with increased role
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(5:35 pm ET) The Seahawks will turn to Luke Willson to start at tight end in the coming weeks, with Zach Miller sidelined by ankle surgery. Should Fantasy owners take notice?

Miller had logged 83.5 percent of the team's snaps through three games, so Willson should be in line for a much larger role as the starter. Of course, Miller was nearly a nonfactor in the passing game so far, having been targeted just seven times. Between he and Willson, quarterback Russell Wilson has targeted tight ends just eight times on 87 attempts, after 20.6 percent of his passes went their way a year ago.

Willson might be the better pass catcher of the Seahawks tight end tandem, but we don't have much to go on here. There are better tight end options worth targeting on waivers, at least until Willson proves himself. 


Christian Ponder preparing to start
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:28 pm ET) Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder took the first-team reps Monday and Tuesday while rookie Teddy Bridgewater watched with an ankle injury. "I'm preparing to play, but we're hoping the best for Teddy," Ponder told reporters.

"I've talked to Teddy. He's doing everything he can to prepare and be ready to play."

Ponder has started 35 games, but none with Norv Turner as offensive coordinator. He could be under center Thursday in Green Bay. "It's a very different style of offense than what we've ran the previous three years," Ponder said. "Without Adrian [Peterson], it's different. Defenses play us differently without Adrian. I'm comfortable and fit well in it."


Denard Robinson still a sleeper, but worth checking out
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(5:26 pm ET) Jaguars running back Denard Robinson has not made much of an impact since being given a larger role in the offense, but he might be someone worth taking a flier on in Fantasy anyways.

The Jaguars have relied on Toby Gerhart less and less as the season has gone on, and for good reason. He is averaging just 2.6 yards per carry through four games, with a long run of just 10 yards. And, while Robinson has not been much better (3.3 yards per carry), the team appears willing to give him a bigger role, if only for a change of pace.

Robinson might have some extra value long term in PPR leagues, even if he ultimately never overtakes Gerhart for the starting job. Robinson has been targeted seven times in 70 offensive snaps, compared to seven targets for Gerhart in 133 snaps.

Clearly, the Jaguars are not thrilled with their investment in Gerhart this offseason, so Robinson is going to get more chances to cut into his playing time if he can show a pulse. At this point, Robinson is a long way from starting, but in deeper leagues, he might have some upside.


Luke Willson gets starting opportunity
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(5:11 pm ET) With Seahawks tight end Zach Miller recovering from ankle surgery, Luke Willson will start Monday's game in Washington, reports the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. The second-year pro caught 20 passes for 272 yards and a touchdown as a rookie.

"When you're the backup guy, you're kind of always prepared for it," Willson said. "I don't really feel like I'm really entering any new territory."

A fifth-round pick out of Rice, Willson started two games last year when Miller hurt his hamstring.


 
 
 
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