(This article was first published on

**Fantasy Football Analytics in R**, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)## About This Blog

My name is Isaac and I’m a Ph.D. student in Clinical Psychology. Why am I writing about fantasy football and data analysis? Because fantasy football involves the intersection of two things I love: sports and statistics. With this blog, I hope to demonstrate the relevance of statistics for improving your performance in fantasy football. In particular, I will use a statistical software package called R.

## Why R?

R is free and open source, and has great flexibility for advanced statistical techniques and graphics. You can download it here: http://www.statmethods.net/. I strongly recommend the RStudio text editor for working with R scripts: http://www.rstudio.com/ide/download/. R scripts and data files for this blog are located in the following GitHub repository: https://github.com/dadrivr/FantasyFootballAnalyticsR.

## How Can I Learn R?

- Use this intro to R: http://www.statmethods.net/
- Post to the R mailing list or forums if you have questions
- Read other blogs on R-bloggers
- Read this blog!

## About The Author

Everyone has biases. For full disclosure, here are mine.

I tend

**not**to believe in the following:- The “Hot Hand“
- Momentum in the context of player or team performance
- The Madden, ESPN, or Sports Illustrated curse
- Clinical judgment (e.g., picking players by judgment alone)

Instead, I prefer the following:

- Previous performance does not affect future performance, yet our brains perceive order out of randomness and streaks out of nothing (known as cognitive biases)
- Random variation around the central tendency (e.g., mean)
- Regression to the mean
- Actuarial formulas

## Future Posts

These assumptions will serve as an important conceptual building block for the analytical approaches that I will discuss in the future. In future posts, I will show you how to download and calculate fantasy projections, how to determine the riskiness of a player, and how to determine the best possible players to pick in a snake and auction draft to maximize your team’s chances of winning your league championship. Thanks for reading, and I would appreciate your ideas, comments, thoughts, and suggestions below!

## References

- Dawes, R. M., Faust, D., & Meehl, P. E. (1989). Clinical versus actuarial judgment.
*Science*,*234*, 1668-1674. - Gilovich, T., Vallone, R., & Tversky, A. (1985). The hot hand in basketball: On the misperception of random sequences.
*Cognitive Psychology*,*17*, 295-314. doi: 10.1016/0010-0285(85)90010-6

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