Are you in the middle of a dynasty rebuild - time for a check-in!
Updated: Sep 6, 2020
By Daniel Martinho
Fantasy Football Analyst
If you’ve read any of my other articles, you will see that I like to do a couple things in every single one. I provide a summary at the end for those in a hurry, I write about my personal experiences, and I like to set the stage so that you can understand my thinking behind each piece. Since the summary is at the end, let's jump right into my thinking behind this article.
The idea for this article actually comes from the same league where I completely blew up my dynasty team. I guess you could say this is a little check-in. This article is meant to remind you to stick with your original plan. You took the time to come up with a blueprint. Now stick with it.
Above is a snippet from the first article about creating a blueprint. If you have not read that article, I would recommend checking it out first. It will put much of what follows here in better context for you:
In that previous article, I mentioned how my plan was to rebuild my team from the ground up on the back of this 2020 draft class. The goal was to build a team with the hopes of winning two or more championships in the next four years. When I acquired all of my draft picks, I was approached with multiple offers. None fit in my blueprint so I had to stick with it. Don't get me wrong, a couple of the offers were very fair. But I didn’t pull the trigger because they simply did not benefit me in the long run.
For those that didn’t have a chance to read my prior article, here is a breakdown of all my trades after the draft.
There was one offer that I really contemplated, and which also gave me the idea for this article. In the rest of this article I will break down how that trade did not fit into my blueprint. I will say it again, take the time to come up with a plan and then stick with it. I will be honest with you: this rebuild is not for the faint of heart. In essence, I am practically throwing away $150 this year. I just knew that there was no chance I was going to win with my previous roster, but part of the blueprint is not to win now, but to build a championship roster for the very near future.
Alright let's get into the article!
I was looking over my team and as a big Miles Sanders truther I was considering trading two late 2021 1st round draft picks plus a little extra (that we never got around to figuring out since I backed out of the trade) for Sanders. Then I started to think about it and realized that might not be the best decision since I am in the process of rebuilding. With that thought in mind, I decided I wanted to take some time to break down my overall thought process on making trades while I am in the process of rebuilding.
My Point Scale
To make it easier to break down and explain I assigned a number value to each round based on a player's current dynasty startup value. Listen, I am not going to argue these numbers and say they have tons of evidence to back them up. I would actually suggest you use your own values. I personally just feel comfortable with these:
1st round- 100
2nd round- 90
3rd round- 80
4th round- 70
5th round- 65
6th round- 60
7th round- 55
8th round- 50
9th round- 45
10th round- 40
That is the way that I look at it. I want to assign values to players when making trades and I think using simple numbers is the easiest way to do that. If a first round draft pick has a value of 100 and the 1.01 has a value of 110, then currently, Miles Sanders is most likely going to be in the 90 range depending on the owner and what news broke that day. A player's trade value is worth nothing more than what any given owner will give up. If I am truly not going to be able to compete in 2020 then I have no reason to trade draft picks for that player unless I can get him at the lowest end of that range. Let's break it down.
Thinking Like an Investor
I like to consider the players on my rosters as assets, with no disrespect to the players themselves. I just heard another analyst use this term and it immediately clicked with me. With that being said I tend to look at trades like an investment. If I need to give up an equivalent player or players that I value at a 90 for Miles Sanders, and at most his value can increase to a value of 110. That is a 20-point increase on my investment, which is equivalent to a 22.2% bump in value. If Sanders gets hurt, his value is obviously going to fall. They say history repeats itself, so let's find an example of a top RB getting hurt and thus losing value. Hmm, that shouldn't be too hard lol.
The perfect example would be Todd Gurley. If we use the https://fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp/dynasty/12-team/all ADP and the numbers from above, here are the values I would have assigned to TG3 during a dynasty startup draft in each corresponding year:
Looking at this breakdown we can see that TG3 maintained consistent value from 2015-2019. It was that huge drop off from 2019 to 2020 that worries me when considering a trade for a running back during a season in which I am most likely not going to compete. If I trade two first round rookie draft picks for Miles Sanders when he is valued at 90 and then he gets injured like we saw with Gurley, we could see his value fall to around 50 over the next year or two. That is a decrease of 40 points, or a 44.4% slide, compared to a potential 22.2% increase. In my opinion there is no reason to take that chance when he could get hurt in 2020. Remember, this is because I do not feel my team has a good chance to compete in 2020. However, if I can get him for what I perceive as a value of 80 points then that is worth it for me since my reward is a potential 37.5% increase. For me it comes down to a simple risk versus reward situation.
One could argue that if you traded for TG3 in 2015 with an approximate value of 90 points, you are going to be ecstatic with five years of him increasing, or at the least maintaining, that kind of value. The problem is that we have no idea if or when that injury is going to occur. If you traded for TG3 at a value of 90 points at the end of 2018, that feels a whole lot different right now in 2020 than if you had traded for him at a similar value in 2015. Nothing is guaranteed in fantasy football since the NFL is changing every year. If you could guarantee me five years where Sanders maintained his value of 90 points, I would make that trade in a heartbeat, even if I had to overpay for him. Since no one can guarantee that, making that type of trade when my team is in the process of rebuilding makes little sense if I have to give up what I perceive as a value of 90 points. That doesn't even go into the fact that if I am trading my two 2021 late first round draft picks for Sanders right now, I am literally going against one of the most basic investor tips, which is to sell high and buy low. Let's check out why it would be considered selling low in this particular instance.
One Way to Value Rookie Picks
The hard part with those future rookie picks is assigning a value to them. Each person is going to assign a different value and those values will change depending on the success/failure of the teams to which those picks are tied.
Let's talk about the value of those two first round picks. In this scenario, those two 2021 first round picks are from the best teams in the league, so everyone is predicting them to land somewhere in the 1.10-1.12 range. That means they are currently at their lowest value. They literally cannot get any lower. But, what if one of those teams has a bad week and is booted out of the first week of playoffs, or better yet those two teams play each other first week of playoffs and I have a guaranteed top seven pick. Then the value of said pick would increase tremendously.
If we use the point chart that I listed above and the 2020 draft class I would assign a value of 90 points to those two 2021 late 1st round draft picks. The way I came up with that value is using the current dynasty startup ADP. I started by looking at the rookie ADP and noted that H. Ruggs and T. Higgins are both going at the end of the first round in rookie drafts. From there I went to the current 2020 dynasty startup ADP and noted they were going in the 8th and 10th rounds, respectively. Using the point scale above, this gave me a value of 90 points.
Now consider this: if one of those managers loses in the first round of the playoffs and that traded pick becomes the 1.06, we would see a significant increase in the value of the pick. If we use ADP again, the current average at the 1.06 is Cam Akers who is going in the 6th round of startups. That is a potential increase of 10-20 points if you just wait until the season plays out.
Also, don’t even get me started on how the value of rookie picks increases during the actual draft. Take a look at the trades I made in this league during the rookie draft:
If we again look at the point scale, I traded away a current value of 150 points in exchange for 235 points. Please remember these are my values on the players and I highly encourage each of you to figure out your own personal scale. If you would like my help I am more than happy to assist.
Even though I completely agree that these rookies have a path to success in the NFL, the fact that they are unproven players is of greater significance to me. I will take the value that is tied to proven players all day long and twice on football Sundays. I will also be using the above players as trade bait throughout the year to further improve my team for the future. I may even have a chance to get some of those players back if I see enough value.
So, to put the finishing touches on this article, the main reason for this checkup is to remember to be patient and stick to your plan. If you are in the process of rebuilding your team, do not trade away your assets when they are at their lowest value. Plan ahead and try to take advantage of each player's peak. Easier said than done, I know. Don't forget about your goal and what you have to sacrifice to achieve said goal. In my case, I plan on sacrificing one year to try to build for the future. What will you sacrifice?
This article is a check-in if you are in the process of rebuilding a dynasty roster
A goal without a plan is simply a wish
Take the time to create a blueprint and then stick with it
Review my previous article: Why This is the Perfect Year to Blow Up That One Dynasty Team & How to Do It!
Only make a trade if it fits your blueprint
RBs can lose value fast
Think like an investor
Future rookie picks will swing in value
Best time to trade rookie picks is immediately before or during the rookie draft
Do not forget about your goal and what you have to sacrifice to achieve said goal.
What will you sacrifice?
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