In fantasy football, you do not win your league at the draft. You win with the moves you make throughout the season. This is why you will want your league to switch to the FAAB waiver-wire system. If you are happy to have a zero percent chance at picking up the next waiver wire gem because you spent your waive priority last week on a kicker to fill in for your starter’s bye week, then I recommend using you old waiver wire system. If you enjoy when breaking news comes out or injury updates are released and your league mate is on their phone and can go to the waiver wire before you, then I recommend using the first come first serve waiver-wire system.
If you plan on being a fantasy winner and want to use the advantage you get by listening to Time Skew and subscribing to the Skew Draft Kit, then you should be lobbying for a Blind Bidding/FAAB waiver system. I’ll make the case for you. All you need to do is show this article to your league mates.
What is FAAB?
FAAB stands for Free Agent Acquisition Budget. As the name implies, you are given a budget (typically $100-500) at the beginning of the year to use on acquiring free agents. Free agents are awarded to the highest bidder. In the case of a tie, the winner is normally the player with the worse record and/or lowest point total.
How Does FAAB and Blind Bid Waivers Work?
Every week during the season fantasy players are given a window that ends on Tuesday’s or Wednesday’s to place bids on free agents similar to the more common waiver priority (worst-to-first) system. All bids are placed in the blind. No other players will know how much you bid and you will not know how much they bid. This is how the bidding may have looked in a fictitious league last season:
|Team||FAAB||Play to Acquire||Bid||Player to Drop||FAAB Remaining if Processed|
|Team A||$85||D.J. Chark||12||Robby Anderson||$73|
|Team B||$38||D.J. Chark||0||Damien Williams||$38|
|Team C||$16||D.J. Chark||16||Dede Westbrook||$0|
|Team D||$69||D.J. Chark||21||O.J. Howard||$48|
In this example, Team D won D.J. Chark because their bid of 21 was the most out of all the bids. Team D’s remaining FAAB budget would then be $48, while the other teams, because they lost would not lose any FAAB.
Notice that Team B put in a bid of zero. Many leagues have an option for a $0 bid that allows a waiver claim by players who have exhausted their FAAB which keeps them more involved throughout the year. This also allows you to pick up players that others probably don’t want without eating into your budget. Obviously, a $0 bid will not win if anyone else places a bid for $1 or more so it’s risky.
Why you should choose FAAB
The number one reason to choose FAAB for your league is that it allows every fantasy player to have a chance at every fantasy free agent. You could be in a situation where you do not bid enough and you lose out on a player. Maybe you spent way too much on a player and now you have less money to use later on. The point is FAAB puts the fantasy player in control of their own destiny. On any player, you decide how much they are worth. If someone thinks they are worth more then what you think, they will get that player. Good fantasy players want to take luck out of the game as much as possible. A FAAB waiver-wire system rewards smarter fantasy players. It makes it much more challenging for a weaker player to luck into a top waiver wire winner.
FAAB also introduces a level of strategy other waiver-wire systems do not. Week in and week out you have to make a decision. How much is this player worth? Are you willing to spend half your budget on a backup winning back that just became the starter because of injury? Should you wait and save your money for the back half of the season? These among other questions are things you will have to think through. When you are in a rolling waivers system you do not get the luxury of thinking through these things. If you have the 8th priority, you know your chances of landing the guy you want are slim to none.
If you watched the NFL Draft this past year, you might have noticed the Cowboys selected CeeDee Lamb just ahead of the Eagles. A team that was desperate for a wide receiver. Why would the Cowboys do that? Obviously the talented wide receiver helps their team. On the other hand, they could stick it to their rival and not let them get a player they desperately needed. This could be you in your fantasy league! Imagine you are heading into the playoffs and you pick up a running back who just got the starting job and steal them from your opponent who just lost their running back to injury. Imagine how much fun that would be. You don’t need the running back, but you are stopping your opponent from getting a key player they have to add. In a rolling waiver system, you would not have that opportunity.
Another fun reason to switch to the FAAB waiver-wire system is great for mind games, especially if you are in a league with friends. With friends or strangers, you could try and convince your league mates you are betting $30 of FAAB on someone in hopes they don’t big. Maybe you are just bluffing and don’t want that player and are simply trying to get another fantasy player to drain their FAAB budget. Imagine this scenario. You are in the office league and you have the waiver wire pulled up on your computer. You go to the restroom but leave your bids up on the screen. Your league mate walks by and sees your bid, and now, they rush over and make their bid higher than yours. You knew the whole time you didn’t want that player, you were just playing mind games.
Typical FAAB settings
- I prefer the option of $0 bids but there are leagues that start with $1 bids. The advantage to $0 is that even when you run out of the money you can still go to the waiver wire.
- Most FAABs are set at $100-1,000 at the beginning of the year. At Time Skew we are an advocate for $100 FAAB budgets. This is a number that makes every bid meaningful and is a quick and simple way of knowing the percentage of budget you spend on a player.
- Waiver processing ends on Tuesdays in most leagues. There is a new trend that at Time Skew we have jumped on board, that trend is waivers run every day. This means every day the players left as free agents you have to bid on them again. In most leagues after Tuesday, it is a fair game and you can pick anyone up. In this new trend, you have to bid every day on players. If you place a bid on Friday you find out if you got them Saturday. Because the waiver run every day, you cannot wait until Sunday to pick a player up because you would have to wait till the day is over to get that player on your team in you won the bid.
This is a no-brainer league setting that has to go in effect for your league in 2020. The rolling waiver-wire system, first come first serve waiver-wire system and others are clearly not good when compared to FAAB. FAAB and blind bidding are the only waiver-wire system that allows for true gamesmanship, more strategy, and additional flexibility. Here at Time Skew, we believe this is the best waiver-wire system and we know you, the Skew Nation will not leave studs on the waiver wire.
Host/founder of the Time Skew podcast. I am dedicated to helping you get better at fantasy football and dominate your league!