I should’ve known at a young age that I’d be destined to be an “Auctioneer.” The father of one of my best friends is an auctioneer, and he sponsored our Little League team when I was mowing down 12-year-olds with my sinking two-seam fastball.

I got my first taste of auction drafts six years ago during baseball season, and I quickly fell in love with the format. I still mostly participate in snake drafts each season because most people are a little afraid to step outside of their comfort zone to do an auction. As much as I enjoy the traditional format, the auction is the purest way to draft, IMHO. I love the freedom of going after any player I please in auction formats, as opposed to being pigeonholed into a certain slot in snake drafts. I also love that you have to fly by the seat of your pants in an auction. I might go into my draft with a general idea of what I might do, but that plan is usually altered or completely thrown out the window after a couple nominations based on how my leaguemates are bidding.

Anyway, since I love auctions so much, I figured I’d give out a few of the general rules I follow on draft day…

Make sure you have cold beers in the fridge: 

Auction drafts can take anywhere from two to three hours to finish, so it’s very important to stay hydrated throughout the draft. It’s also important to make sure that a bathroom is nearby once you decide to break the seal.

Know your format: 

It’s always good to do a little homework before your draft, and simply knowing your league’s scoring and roster requirements can be a small advantage. I’m in an auction league that rewards bonus points for longer touchdowns, so I might spend a couple extra bucks for players like Russell WilsonLeSean McCoy, or DeSean Jackson. Try to make the rules and roster requirements work in your favor.

Know your competitors: 

Most fantasy owners have a soft spot for a certain team or for certain players, so use that knowledge to your advantage when nominating. And if multiple owners like a certain team or player, it could mean an all out bidding war is in the cards. Say your friends are Cowboys fans, and you don’t really want anything to do with Ezekiel Elliott, Dez Bryant, and Dak Prescott, it doesn’t hurt to nominate those players so the other owners burn some of their available money. The key to any draft is getting great value, and if your fellow owners are spending more money ahead of you, the better chance you have to get values later in the draft.

*Don’t buy players you don’t want: 

This sounds really simple, but I’ve fallen into this trap a few times in snake drafts when a player ...