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The DLF Mailbag

Welcome to the latest edition of the weekly mailbag.

Send me your questions using the DLF Mailbag Form and I’ll include the best in future articles.  Remember the guidelines to have the best chance at seeing your question get posted:

1.) Dynasty questions only, no start/sit questions

2.) Help me help you by providing sufficient information about your league (e.g. line-up requirements/PPR or non-PPR/etc.), and include your first name and where you’re from.

Let’s get to it!

1.)  Is there any support for the idea of owning the QB and WR (or TE) from the same team?  I own both Stafford and Pettigrew.  Am I better off starting both of them or trying to trade Pettigrew for another TE in the same range?  Is there extra value to be had by having a pairing?  – Bret in Nashvegas

No.  This is a common misconception.  As far as I know, there is no statistical advantage to owning a pair, nor is there a statistical disadvantage.   It’s quite simple; you want to own the very best players available to you at each and every position.  And forcing yourself to adjust your rankings based on pairings would lead you to draft sub-optimally or value players incorrectly in trade negotiations.

There are owners who want to own the pairs.  That might provide an opportunity.  Let’s say you own Hakeem Nicks and the another owner has Megatron and Eli Manning.  Maybe you can get a cheaper Nicks for Megatron deal if that particular owner subscribes to the theory that pairing a QB and WR is somehow beneficial.

There could be some psychological arguments in favor of (or opposed to) the pairing concept, but statistics wouldn’t support those arguments.  It really doesn’t matter – just get a hold of the best players you can and ignore this artifact.

2.)  What do you look at to determine how long to keep a RB? I have Arian Foster, Ray Rice, CJ2K and Jonathan Stewart and I’m trying to figure out which one is closest to being done so I can trade him at the highest point?  I don’t want to sell prematurely and miss out on production, either. Jason in Madison, WI

I am 100% about value and view all my dynasty players as assets.  No player on my team is off limits for trades.  And I tend to be the instigator of most deals.  So I’m looking to churn my roster at all times.  And running back is an area of primary focus because the shelf life is so short.

The first thing I consider is the overall condition of my team.  If I have an aging running back and know that I am a competing team, I’ll probably ride him until all the gas is out of the tank.  I think guys like Michael Turner and Frank Gore are grossly undervalued relative to my projected 2012 fantasy numbers.  I’m okay in that situation to get “left holding the bag.”  The game is about winning championships, not looking smart in trades.

The second thing I do is make the trades in season, not in the off-season.  During the off-season, owners are overthinking things like age, health, etc.  During the season, they are more focused on short term production – that’s the time to deal a productive, yet aging back.  Plus, during the season you have a better perspective on your team’s relative strength to the rest of the league.

I’m heavily stats driven so I also watch the yards per carry from year to year.  If I’m seeing a decline, I’m likely to start shopping my player.  Also, I’m less concerned about total touches than I am about age.  Age is the bane of running backs.

3.) What’s the outlook for Kendall Hunter?  I’m desperate at running back, but the Brandon Jacobs signing worries me.  Should I hold Hunter or try to move him to the Gore owner as a handcuff?  By the way, you guys are dealing out the analysis while the other fantasy writers are hibernating.  John in Chicago

First off, thank you for the compliment.  As you know, our motto is “There is No Off-Season!”  Hopefully you enjoyed the extensive draft coverage this past weekend.

Now as to your question about Hunter’s prospects:

They aren’t good.  The running back situation in San Francisco seemed relatively clear until the draft.  Now, I’m not sure what to think.  LaMichael James is a real talent.  And that selection was one of the more surprising ones to me.

The time to move Hunter was a week ago to the Gore owner.  As you say, he appeared to be a very solid handcuff for a guy who has a, somewhat undeserved, injury reputation.  Now the Gore owner is likely unsure who the handcuff is or what Hunter’s role might be.

My expectation is that dynasty owners will severely discount Hunter at this point.  Hunter’s ADP was as a midlevel RB3 prior to the NFL draft.  I think this will plummet to RB5 or worse at this point.  Unfortunately, I don’t see you getting anywhere near decent value for Hunter.  I’d recommend holding until the situation becomes less murky.

You have nothing to lose at this point.

4.) My team is stacked I’ll admit it, but I still want to improve via trades.  I am one running back short of having a tremendous run, but no one will touch me in a trade.  I can’t even get a bad deal.  Advice?  David, also in Chicago

I’ve seen this happen in one of my leagues recently.  A team is clearly superior and other owners are leery of trading with them.  Worse yet, when teams do trade with the powerhouse the message board lights up with criticisms.

I’m not sure there’s an easy answer to your question.  Sounds like you are a victim of your own success!

I’d recommend the following:

  • People find it irritating when stronger teams trade purely from their bench depth.  You may have to pony up a quality player in order to get a deal done.
  • Consider trading for older players who can still push you over the top.  There are aging running backs out there that could take a serious contender to a league championship.  There isn’t much use in a team in a rebuild to hold on to Fred Jackson, Michael Turner, Frank Gore, etc.  Maybe you target this type of back.
  • Consider taking some garbage along with the stud you are looking for.  Just dumping a player can make an owner feel good about a deal.
  • Be prepared to deal picks.  Sometimes the most enticing thing you can offer is a future pick.  Of course, the strength of your team works against you here.
  • If your league allows conditional trades, then consider that.  For example, you could offer a 2013 second round pick for Turner and if he exceeds 1,200 yards, it becomes a 2013 first round selection.  Now the other owner is rooting for your success – that Could serve to take the edge off of dealing with the league leader

Good luck and the waiver wire is always there for you to round out the last pieces of your dynasty juggernaut.

Editor’s Note:  Tim Stafford can be found @dynastytim on twitter and in the forums as tstafford.

33 Comments

33 Comments

  1. Nickdib

    May 1, 2012 at 5:14 am

    in a ten-team all offense 22 man roster would you consider Kendall Hunter to not be worth rostering?

    • Tim Stafford

      May 1, 2012 at 6:06 am

      No. He’s still a top-220 player. But you could have a roster in that format where you’d be hard pressed to find room for him. But he shouldn’t be on the WW.

  2. Preston Yarnell

    May 1, 2012 at 5:36 am

    Nice article. On question 1, the only positive of owning both a QB and a WR/TE from the same team is the “explosion factor,” if you will. Just means that when your WR does indeed score, you are more likely to have a big week since your QB threw him the ball.

    Obviously statistically if you had the better player this would not make a difference, and you should always draft to get the best players, but I think knowing that when your WR scores your QB also scores does have some positive to it, albeit not a statistical advantage, per se.

    • Tim Stafford

      May 1, 2012 at 6:05 am

      That’s true. There’s an all or nothing aspect to the pairing. But at the end of the day, superior players equal higher production.

      • Coach

        May 1, 2012 at 9:46 am

        back in 2001 i started Rich Gannon, Tim Brown and Jerry Rice every week. Money in the bank.

    • John from Providence

      May 2, 2012 at 11:29 am

      That’s true, but the flip side is true too. Even the best offenses have bad weeks from time to time. If the team you have the QB/WR combo has a bad week, you now have 2 players in your lineup who had a crappy week, instead of just one. If the players are spread out over 2 teams, it is much less likely that they will have a bad week at the same time.

      • John from Providence

        May 2, 2012 at 12:18 pm

        But I still agree that you grab the best possible players, regardless of combos or not.

  3. Chad

    May 1, 2012 at 6:00 am

    I personally love having the RB/QB combo…..

  4. Jackson C.

    May 1, 2012 at 6:03 am

    Why did the 49ers have to take LaMichael and Jacobs!! They have ruined Kendall Hunter’s dynasty sleeper status!! WAhhhhhhhh!

    • Eric Dickens

      May 1, 2012 at 6:12 am

      Jackson, as a self-professed Kendall Hunter fanatic, I can identify with those feelings. After the initial shock wears off, allow it to be a positive thing. Now it means that he’s that much cheaper to buy & you can stash him for half the cost that he was a week ago!

      • Steve Moyer

        May 4, 2012 at 2:24 pm

        You can stash him for next to nothing, which is what he is worth.

  5. Will

    May 1, 2012 at 6:26 am

    i think the QB/WR pairing is over-rated, you than back yourself into a corner saying should i start the pair over a wr that is in a favorable matchup.

    i look at it the same way if my opponent starts my WR’s QB im not going to bench my WR, it doesnt prevent the QB from scoring points, it hurts me.

    • Ryan Krcil

      May 1, 2012 at 8:28 am

      The logic for benching the opposing team’s QB is so you clearly have something to root for. If you bench that WR then you can just go for that QB to play poorly compared to wanting him to do really good, but only to your WR… It makes watching the game much more pleasant.

  6. Rp

    May 1, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Dont fight the qb/wr hook ups.. Its the best way to manipulat a trade as stated… Braylok edwards was once given up for roddy and a future… All because of brady quinn!!! Suckaaa

  7. Dan

    May 1, 2012 at 9:59 am

    Need some advice for the pros. Would you trade 1.01(trich) and JJones and 1.07 for Foster, Dem Thomas and 2.03. I have Payton, CJ2K and AJ to help feel out my roster.

    • Cyrus Miller

      May 1, 2012 at 10:48 am

      Foster is a stud, but I think Richardson isn’t a huge dropoff.

      Julio Jones is better than Thomas. 1.07 higher than 2.03.

      While tempting, I would stick with what you have. Unless you think Foster will continue to be the RB1 for the next 3 years, in which case it is a slight downgrade in talent and draft slot to get him. But 1.07 can get you Wilson or Floyd, whereas 2.03 gets you a question mark.

      • Ryan Krcil

        May 1, 2012 at 11:36 am

        I agree with Cyrus.

        • Sensei John Kreese

          May 1, 2012 at 5:48 pm

          I would say no.

          Well, actually i would say “hell no”.

          • Jesse

            May 1, 2012 at 9:23 pm

            Yeah, that isn’t close, imo.

  8. Rob

    May 1, 2012 at 11:42 am

    The bad side of owning a QB/WR/TE combo is my team last year in owning manning/wayne/clark. If the QB goes down for any time then it makes your whole team suffer.

    I would say if you have a good but not great team having a combo can help you beat the great teams. If you have a great team its best to not have a combo cuz you don’t need that boom/bust match-up.

  9. tebow

    May 1, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    james’s spot isnt bad if you are willing to wait. JH loves and knows what james can do. jacobs and gore are running outta gas next year james will have a huge role on the team

  10. Steve Moyer

    May 1, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    Time to update your dynasty rankings….

  11. jhatt3

    May 1, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    Is Pead really all everyone is making him up to be? I have a 1-9 and am tempted to grab him there.

    • Luke Bouchard

      May 1, 2012 at 2:29 pm

      i wouldn’t. i’d rather have hillman

  12. Mr. No Days Off

    May 1, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Is Peyton Hillis worthy of keeping in a dynasty league?
    Keep in mind I own Jammal Charles as well…

    • Luke Bouchard

      May 1, 2012 at 2:29 pm

      yes he is, regardless of owning charles

  13. Chris

    May 1, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    I won the championship last year, but I’m looking at an aging group of RBs and trying to make some moves to get a bit younger while staying competitive. I have Turner, Gore, Fred Jackson, and Sproles at RB. The rest of my team is a great combination of players who will both produce and maintain long-term value.

    I’ve been offered Mendenhall and Redman for Gore. I get 4 (almost 5) years younger here and I think the two are comprable now that Gore doesn’t catch passes out of the backfield. What do you think? Ben trying to move Turner/Jackson but can’t get fair value, would rather repeat than deal them cheap.

    Thanks!

    • Mark Bush

      May 1, 2012 at 6:50 pm

      I like that deal for you Chris. Redman has a good chance to be a RB2 this season and I think Mendy will come back strong from his injury. I would post this proposed deal on the forum to get more insight though.

      Good luck!

  14. Alan Bauerle

    May 1, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    Ok would u guys trade the 1.3 n either the 2.2 or 2.3. For bradshaw Antonio brown n the 1.5. I have shaub Wallace Stewart dhb ridley n pettigrew just to round my starters out. Looks like I’d b gettin rg3 if I keep the pick. Only prob my backup qbs are tebow n hassleback n kaepernik.

    • Boomer

      May 1, 2012 at 8:09 pm

      Yes. Your 2nd round pick is worth less than Antonio Brown. Ahmad Bradshaw is a quality player who is worth dealing down two selections. There’s still quality players left at 1.5 as well.

  15. CinciGuy

    May 3, 2012 at 10:15 am

    I’m in a 10 team dynasty league. Year 2 of 4. All owners must keep 4 players (no draft pick penalty). I also have overall #3 and #4 draft picks this year. Current roster is below. Whom do you keep???

    M Vick
    P Manning

    D McFadden
    F Gore
    F Jackson

    A Johnson
    R White
    M Wallace
    S Johnson

    • CinciGuy

      May 3, 2012 at 10:19 am

      My initial thoughts. Keep:

      D McFadden
      A Johnson
      R White
      M Wallace

      Draft J Blackmon @#3 (he will be available in this league), the best available RB @#4, and a QB in round 2.

      • Joe Kool

        May 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm

        Agreed

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