"ADP" Is a Crucial Element of Fantasy Football That Participants Should Understand

When you're playing fantasy football, several factors come into the equation, and "ADP" is just one of many. So what is it? Details.

Chris Barilla - Author

Sep. 8 2021, Published 3:20 p.m. ET

A football game
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As fantasy football season returns in full swing, newbies and long-time players are faced with challenging aspects when it comes to creating and managing their ideal team. One of the first things a fantasy participant needs to worry about is their league's draft and ensuring they make the right decisions that will set them up for success over the coming weeks and months.

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One of the crucial things players need to understand then is ADP or Average Draft Position. This is an important factor in the initial draft at the beginning of the fantasy season. These fantasy drafts are in conjunction with the official draft rankings. So, what exactly is ADP in fantasy football? How does it play into the game? Keep reading for more details.

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What is "ADP" and how does it factor into your fantasy game? Knowing it will affect how you draft players.

ADP is the acronym for Average Draft Position, which dictates how players are chosen across millions of fantasy football drafts. Its main purpose is to operate as a helpful draft prepping list that ranks how players are valued in the league, as told by other players who have drafted them in the past, giving fantasy users a better understanding of who they should pick.

The rankings aren't made out of thin air. Each player's position on an ADP list reflects all the previous drafts made over the years within that ADP list provider's fantasy community. These "rankings" do not reflect a player's actual standing in the NFL.

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Imagine there have been 10 fantasy football drafts in total. Now, if a player has consistently been drafted first in all 10 drafts, they would have an ADP of 1.0. However, if the player was drafted first in only five drafts and drafted second in the other five, they would have an ADP of 1.5. Therefore, 1.0 constitutes a better ADP, indicating to the participants that the athlete is a better draft pick.

SiriusXM Celebrity Fantasy Football Draft
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This information is useful to fantasy football players as it makes it easier for them to discern whether they should draft a player from the get-go or if it'll be alright to wait before deciding. It doesn't offer exact metrics on when to draft someone, nor does it take into account real-time actions by the athletes. It just helps understand when a player can add an athlete to their fantasy line-up.

Several online sources offer a take on Average Draft Positions, and some are more specific with their intended uses than others. Some ADPs are geared towards the casual fantasy user, offering basic, no-frills lists from their localized communities that give just enough information to help the average participant make better draft choices.

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Some ADP providers compile more detailed rankings based on the best placements from fantasy league players around the world. These lists are helpful for those who may have money on the line for their fantasy league.

One thing to remember though: ADP lists are NOT official NFL stat ranking lists and vary from source to source.

Some popular ADP providers include FantasyPros, DraftSharks, and RotoWire.

There is a notable difference when comparing ADPs and official draft rankings. ADP is an objective take on players in the NFL and only reflects a certain fantasy community’s thoughts on a player's performance. A provider's ADP rankings can be used as a reference point in conjunction with official NFL rankings to help players make a more informed decision reflecting other's past opinions of their potential draft picks.

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