Welcome to the second installment of Razzball’s Dynasty League strategy guide. Last time we talked we discussed some of the ways for 1st year owners in a Dynasty League to succeed amongst both veteran and rookie owners. Today we will look into strategies that can help veteran owners in existing leagues take your team not just into the postseason but into a Championship contender for years to come.
Quote, “It’s always better to trade a player a year too early then a year too late.”
Maintaining a format and structure you can buy into isn’t as easy as it seems when it comes to running a dynasty team. Usually you have to be one of three types of owners. There’s the one who constantly tries to out duel his opponents in the off season by trading talent for talent, draft picks for talent or picks for picks in an effort to move up the draft board and take the best available player or the player who will best suit the teams current needs. On the other hand you have owners that will sit back, wait for others to trade away their picks and make tons of mistakes on draft day and throughout the season. These owners are usually very patient, do the bulk of their homework weeks before the draft and have enough talent on their roster to keep themselves in the hunt for many years. The downfall to this type of owner is that they sometimes miss out on an opportunity to strike gold in the draft or via a trade due to the late bloomer approach they take. It certainly does not mean they will not have a solid draft or a successful season, it just means that they are usually the last ones to be prepared to make any deals with you or to seriously consider any major changes to their teams nucleus. Finally, the approach that has seemed to strike some of my league owners with sudden success is what I have dubbed the” Three and Out” approach. It could very quickly become a staple of every Dynasty League and due to the playing life of the average football player (3 ½ years) can have a huge upside. Every three years they evaluate their current situation and decide who will stay on their team and be productive for the next three seasons. If they don’t fit the bill – they’re gone. This way you’re constantly living with a team that can, at any moment be an All-American collegiate team one year and an NFL Rookie of the Year team the next. It’s quite the ballsy stlye that many league owners are envious of until of course, the picks don’t pan out. But when you see their roster filled with young studs waiting to breakout in the NFL you just can’t help but to ask yourself what you needed to do to put yourself in that same position. This strategy is really starting to grow on me and I strongly suggest you try to do the same if you find yourself scraping the bottom of your leagues standings or just missing the playoffs every year. Of course, as the old adage goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
How To Beat Yourself
All it takes is one season, one trade, one week or one owner. Year after year owners do it with ease and never see the light of the fantasy championship tunnel again. I’m referring to killing your own chances of success by over-thinking everything you do in your league.
The Offseason Beating – Losing Before The First Snap
In secret, owners talk to themselves, recklessly scavenge message boards for “insider” info and analyze depth charts way before the team has had their first OTA of the season. I am all for the hardcore owners approach and dedication to their league but more often then not it can lead to a recipe for disaster. The NFL bandwagon is a very easy one to jump on if you are a hardcore gamer. The off season combine, draft and OTA news is enough to make you want to draft in early March.
!!!***WARNING***!!! Please proceed with caution from this point forward…
Your fellow league owners, by now, know exactly what you are up to and are patiently waiting for you to make the first mistake of the season.
Some fella out of Old Dominion just broke the 40 meter record and he just happens to be a Special Teams/WR/KR dynamo in the vastly popular Big 24 division in Bumbleville, USA. This means you should quit your job, grab every social network account possible, tell all your family members to go to hell and dedicate every waking moment in preparation of your 1st round Rookie pick, right?
Ok, so maybe I overdid it a bit but I can guarantee you that there are some owners that have previously been diagnosed with (SSS) Sudden Sleeper Syndrome. For God sakes, let the experts cover this end of the analytical spectrum. You have no business being here and your team will thank you later on for not committing fantasy suicide before Week 1.
The Draft Beating – Let The Picks Fall Where They May
At some point you need to tell yourself that this is going to work out, that everything is going to be fine. Then, in a quick fart-like burst of energy you decide that Bobby Carpenter, since being released from the Cowboys, is going to land a job with a team in need for a starting linebacker and will finally become the fantasy stud you’ve been ensuring all your league mates about since he left Ohio State four years ago. So you gather up the email and phone list, call the next team up in the draft (which happens to be on the other side of the planet) and trade your life savings in Running Back prospects for the chance to select the boy wonder, that has now become one Bobby Carpenter.
This is great time to go outside and ask your neighbor to kick you square in the scrotum.
After you gather your manhood, come inside, re-arrange your draft strategy and explain to your roommate how awesome you are you check your email and find four league replies to Re: Dumbass.
The Lesson – Keep your pants on and wait for the players to come to you. Chances are if you can find value in the 4th round you can find it in the 10th . It’s a simple strategy called patience and more often than not it pays off. Your league mates are dying to see you drop the ball and if you have already become “that guy” chances are there is a reason why.
The advantage existing owners have on one another lies in the depth and production of the roster. Get yourself in a position to keep pace, land a playoff spot and eventually topple the completion enroute to a championship. Make the short term success deals before the playoff push and try to obtain long term success in the draft. As much as I’d like to sit here and tell you to trade everything you have for that one money player, I just can’t. It’s not a strategy that has proven successful and it never will be. Dynasty leagues are about playing the mind game as much as the physical version (setting your lineups). The best way to stay ahead of the veteran pack is to get inside their heads by asking questions and repeatedly monitoring how they develop their teams winning ways.
I hope this article has insulted and driven most of you to turn to a better life in the realm of fantasy football. Of course it’s all in fun and meant to motivate you to be better, smarter owners. League success comes from successful owners so if you want your league to flourish, spend more time paying in a timely manner, getting to know your mates and less time complaining about the hierarchy and how the league has gone to crap since that one rule change they made nine-thousand years ago. Good luck to you and your fantasy endeavors. Let’s make 2010 a great year!