Punt: A player with a bottom of the barrel price tag.

Part of being successful in both tournaments and cash games is knowing when to punt at a certain position and knowing which position to punt. It’s not a set in stone process to follow but there are a few situations when punting can be optimal.

Punting quarterback is a very risky approach to any format, so if you’re choosing to take this path, make sure you know the opportunity cost of the punt. Wide receiver is usually the easiest position to punt and feel good about, knowing that almost any receiver on the field has the chance to break off a long touchdown catch. Running backs, along with quarterbacks, touch the ball the most out of anyone. Because of this, punting with a running back can be very volatile, unless it is a mispriced player, because the cheaper players generally don’t see the volume of carries that an expensive player will.

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Tournaments

Generally, tournaments are a place where you can pretty much punt any position you’d like, depending on the upside of the punts and the players that are filling out the rest of your lineup. As always, upside is the most important thing when constructing tournament lineups. For tournaments, it’s better to punt with a guy who you think might take a 0 but that you think has a chance to score, than to take a guy that you know will score points, but doesn’t have a chance to score. The lack up upside can really hurt a tournament lineup.

Cash Games

When it comes to finding consistency with punt players, it’s usually not easy. The top-tier players are top-tier because of the consistency they provide. This makes it somewhat difficult to stomach a “punt” in cash games. As always, there are certain situations which will make a punt a very easy play, but as a rule of thumb, there is only one position you should punt in your cash lineups on a regular basis, and that is the tight end slot.

Tight End

The tight end in the college game isn’t nearly as important for fantasy purposes as it is in the NFL. Most teams don’t have a great pass catching tight end, and even when they do, they don’t utilize him correctly. Once in a great while, a player like Jace Amaro, formerly of Texas Tech, will come along and have the value of a top-tier wide receiver while still being priced as a tight end. These players are rare, very rare. Because the great tight ends like that don’t really exist, it is a good rule of thumb to just punt the tight end position.

Even the “top-tier” tight ends consistently put 0’s on the board, which can really hurt in any format if you paid more than minimum salary for said player. This is why punting tight end is a safe bet. Even if the player gets a 0, you didn’t invest hardly any cap space in him, minimum salary is 2% of the cap (at least it has been in past years, changes are always being made to the game to improve the product), so the 0 is easier to handle than if you paid 10% of your cap for him.

Position Changes

On very rare occasion, maybe once or twice per season, news will come out in the middle of the week that a third or fourth string wide receiver will be getting some snaps at quarterback. This situation usually happens with small schools, as the power six teams usually have very good talent at the quarterback positions and aren’t put in situations like this. Because this happens with the small schools, the news about the position change isn’t made a big deal and a lot of people don’t hear about it. When this news comes out, don’t hesitate, just play whatever minimum-priced wide receiver it is and have fun creating the rest of your lineup with the extra cap space.

Continue Reading CFB Training Camp

CFB Hall of Fame – Lesson 01 – Using Vegas to Predict Performance
CFB Hall of Fame – Lesson 02 – Knowing When to Punt a Position
NEXT LESSON CFB Hall of Fame – Lesson 03 – Blowout Factor
CFB Hall of Fame – Lesson 04 – Research Tools

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