Editor’s Note: With your lineup likely set for the week, we take the easy reading time of Saturday afternoons to bring you the Dynasty Confessional featuring entertaining stories from your DLF brethren. If you’d like to have your tale told, fill out the Dynasty Confessional Form and we may choose to interview you.
Today we share two sad tales, from Ryan Mattern and R. Krcil.
Ryan Mattern’s Story
The summer of 2002 marked the first time my friends and I would venture into the world of dynasty fantasy football. We held a ten team draft, and I acquired many talented players. We all endured varying levels of success for the following years, but I felt I was starting to “get it” faster than many of the other newcomers.
I was fielding a very respectable lineup in the 2004 season. I felt like I was a player away from winning a championship. My claim to fame at the time was my quarterback duo of Dante Culpepper and Peyton Manning, but by week five, I realized my team was lacking running back depth. Each week, my great quarterbacks would record great stats, but one would be stashed away on my bench. I knew I had to change something. I planned on cashing in on my talented quarterback group, so I began searching through my opponents rosters for a team who needed help at the position. What followed would be the worst trade I’ve ever made.
Chris Brown was having a great year under the tutelage of his Head Coach, Jeff Fisher. Brown was averaging nearly five yards per carry that year, and I decided to aggressively pursue him. The Brown owner was very interested in Manning, so I decided to negotiate a deal with him. At the time, Brown was considered a trendy asset to possess, but I knew I needed more poker chips to be placed on the table before I called with my “Manning cards”.
On October 7, 2004, I negotiated a deal that sent Manning to a league mate. In return, I would receive Brown, Reggie Williams, and a 2005 first round rookie pick. The next year I would draft Mark Clayton with the draft pick I acquired in my Manning deal.
On the surface the trade doesn’t seem catastrophic, but even in plain sight, it wasn’t a good one. Even an optimist would say that Brown, Williams, and Clayton had mediocre careers. The real disaster came in a different form of hindsight. Culpepper and Manning were each yielding about the same value on the trade market that year. I could have traded Culpepper and kept Manning. Since the 2004 season ended, Manning has had over 25,000 more passing yards and over 200 more touchdowns than Culpepper. I could have lived with myself after trading Culpepper for that middling talent, but instead, I’ve had to endure watching Manning fill the record books with his name for the past eight years. All the while, knowing he could have been my fantasy signal caller.
R. Krcil’s Story
My friends and I had done dynasty fantasy football for years, but 2012 was the first year we decided to introduce a “super-flex” position. Essentially, we could start a second quarterback if we chose to. The allure with a two quarterback league is the quarterback position is valued at a much higher level than in conventional leagues. I decided to investigate what some of my bench quarterbacks would be worth in a market that now valued them higher than before.
My running backs were not looking very strong heading into the season. Maurice Jones-Drew was currently “holding-out”, and not participating in preseason games. That worried me because I did not know whether or not he would contribute in my quest for a championship. I rostered C.J. Spiller, but at the time, he was considered to be a player I would play in my flex position; I did not envision him having the year that he had in 2012.
The player that all of my friends were talking about was Ryan Williams. He was returning from knee surgery, to what would essentially be his rookie year for the Arizona Cardinals. There wasn’t much statistical evidence that supported Williams’ spike in value among my group, but I decided he would have a tremendous season.
I had a backup quarterback named Colin Kaepernick on my team. My friends and I got together one afternoon to view a few preseason games together. We watched as Kaepernick ran for 92 yards and a touchdown in his first preseason game of the year. I thought it was great that my young quarterback just had an awesome game, all in front of potential buyers. I figured Kaepernick would surely see very little playing time, if any, in the near future. The San Francisco 49ers already had Alex Smith as their starter, whom took them to within a game of the Super Bowl, just months before. I had very little use for a backup quarterback, but I did need a starting running back.
I used Kaepernick’s big game as leverage in trading. I am very keen in the art of negotiation, so I sent out a “feeler” offer to the Williams owner. That is to say, I sent an offer in which, I expected to be declined, yet I felt would measure the owners interest in my young backup signal caller. I offered him Kaepernick for Williams, straight up. Surprisingly, within hours he accepted the deal.
Kaepernick is now considered a consensus top-15 player in “super-flex” leagues, and Williams is barely rosterable.
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Follow Karl on Twitter @KarlSafchick