HyperActive Draft Review, Volume III
Author: Ryan McDowell
A few years ago, the HyperActive dynasty leagues were born from a group of owners searching for a competitive league that did not go dormant once the Super Bowl concluded. HyperActive leagues are comprised of two 12 team conferences with separate player pools. The champions of each conference meet in a week 16 Super Bowl.
We recently conducted the startup dynasty draft for Hyper/Active 5. My goal for each of these leagues is to always find the best, most active dynasty owners possible. For this installment, I focused most of my recruiting on the best of the best from Twitter. What resulted is a strong group of drafters and owners, representing many of the top fantasy football sites on the web, along with some of the most savvy owners I have come in contact with.
Here is a list of the 24 owners in the league.
* Ryan McDowell, Dynasty League Football
* Ryan Forbes, 2 Mugs
* Bryan Fontaine, Pro Football Focus & Dynasty Blitz
* Sigmund Bloom, FootballGuys
* Mark Kelly
* Andy Miley, Dynasty Blitz & Fantasy Alarm
* Mike Clay, Pro Football Focus & Rotoworld
* David Cherney, Dynasty Football Warehouse
* Shane Hallam, Draft Countdown
* Eric Dickens, Dynasty League Football
* Chase Wheetley, Dynasty League Football
* The FF Ghost, Dynasty League Football
* Jeff Tefertiller, FootballGuys
* Jarrett Behar, Dynasty League Football
* Peter Hodes
* Andrew Garda, FootballGuys
* Nishant Shailendra, formerly of Pro Football Focus
* Brian Quinlan
* Alessandro Miglio, Pro Football Focus
* Jimmy Nall, YHIHFfantasyfootball.com
* Scott Atkins, Fantasy Players Association
* Bruce Hammond, FootballGuys
* Michael Bronte, BFDfantasyfootball.com
* Steve Wyremski, Dynasty League Football
Scoring: WCOFF (1 PPR for all players, 4 points for passing touchdowns)
Starting lineups: QB, RB, WR, TE, 3 FLEX (RB, WR, TE), PK, TD
Roster Limit: 26 players
I strongly believe the base of a dynasty team is built in the first ten rounds of a draft. Beyond that, there is plenty of time and picks to grab an aging veteran as a short term starter, or a young upside player to stash at the end of the bench. For this series, I will give you a team by team look after ten rounds, as well as a look inside the mind of each owner who shared their draft strategy.
Here’s a look at a few of the teams on the HYPER side of the league:
Jeff Tefertiller- wannabee @JeffTefertiller
* I went into the draft wanting to get as many top/elite receivers as possible since this is a PPR league.
* Further, I wanted young receivers and would choose youth if possible
* I planned on targeting quarterback in rounds 10-12
* I targeted Tony Gonzalez as my TE1 after round 13
* As far as RBs, I hoped to fill in as many as possible, but still wanted BPA
* Along the way, if I could trade for other teams’ first round picks, I would, even if it meant sacrificing depth and second and third round picks.
1.01 Calvin Johnson, WR DET
1.11 AJ Green, WR CIN
3.10 Roddy White, WR ATL
4.09 Antonio Brown, WR PIT
5.10 Torrey Smith, WR BAL
7.10 Isaiah Pead, RB STL
9.09 Rashard Mendenhall, RB PIT
10.03 Isaac Redman, RB PIT
Best Value Pick: Jeff found the best value in the later rounds as he filled his starting lineup with solid veterans that should help make him a contender for the next two or three seasons. Examples of these players are Matt Schaub (12.03) and Tony Gonzalez (15.04).
Biggest Risk: Jeff took some risks at the running back spot relying on a rookie and an injured star as his top two backs. He made a great pick covering his Rashard Mendenhall selection with likely early season starter Isaac Redman.
Other picks of note: Rashad Jennings (16.03)
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Matt Schaub
RB = Isaac Redman
WR = Calvin Johnson
TE = Tony Gonzalez
FLEX = AJ Green
FLEX = Roddy White
FLEX = Antonio Brown
Year One Outlook: Jeff started out just like I did with Calvin Johnson and AJ Green, but he went a different direction after that and focused heavily on the wide receiver position, making his first five choices wideouts. This resulted in a starting lineup relying mostly on that position, but it could pay off for Jeff. Many owners like to build their team around wide receivers that have much longer career expectancy than running backs. As I said, Jeff filled his lineup with veterans who should be solid starters for the next couple of years. Jeff also must be a big fan of Reservoir Dogs with his lineup featuring Mr. Brown, Mr. Green and Mr. White.
Jarrett Behar- Long Island Gators @EyeoftheGator
* My strategy was to balance getting my guys with getting more than eight picks in the first eight rounds. I wanted to try to trade back in the first round from 1.08, figuring I could still get my dynasty WR2 Hakeem Nicks and pick up another pick. Barring a trade, I was prepared to take Nicks there, and, assuming there was a running back who I liked for value at 2.05, go WR/RB/WR, then take Aaron Hernandez at 4.05. I then planned on taking one of RGIII or Andrew Luck at 5.08, then take a solid established quarterback later on. My only other general goal was to load up on young, high upside players for the remainder of the draft to keep my team competitive for the future, while mixing in a few value veterans to help me win now. I also had a specific plan to take Martellus Bennett and Adrien Robinson towards the end of the draft.
* The thing about having a plan is you have to be able to adjust on the fly when things change. Things went about the way I expected when I didn’t like any of my trade offers and took Nicks 1.08, and had Chris Johnson fall to me at 2.05. Then as 3.08 approached, I had to adjust because both Matt Forte and Mike Wallace (two players I had rated in my Top 20 overall) were still available. I knew it would probably cost me a shot at Hernandez, but it seemed worth it to me, so I traded up to 3.09 and took Forte and Wallace – I felt like I got incredible value there. I then tried desperately to trade back up until Hernandez got taken at 5.01, but it didn’t work out. I didn’t plan on taking a second quarterback in the sixth, but couldn’t pass up the value of Michael Vick at 6.12. I almost took Denarius Moore at 6.05, but I traded back because I need to make up for all my trading up and thought Moore would still be there at 6.11. I knew I would take Kendall Wright if Moore went, which he did at 6.09.
* When I was talking to people, I got the sense that some weren’t thrilled with the players on the board around the end of the fifth , so I was able to make trades to move up. Starting when RedBlueRadio was able to obtain 5.04 for his 2013 1st round pick, I tried to work a similar deal, finally making it happen at 5.11 to take Marques Colston (I’m ok with his age and injury history when he’s my WR3 behind Nicks and Wallace). I ended up with ten picks in the first eight rounds, which I think gave my team a very solid base. I didn’t plan on going with Brandon Pettigrew as my TE1, but the moving around cost me my top 2 TE targets – Hernandez and Fred Davis (7.03). The depth I got at TE though, with Pettigrew, Dustin Keller and Martellus Bennett/Robinson, should work out well. Once I had solidified my core, I went young, mostly with WRs at the end of the draft, as per my plan.
1.08 Hakeem Nicks, WR NYG
2.05 Chris Johnson, RB TEN
3.08 Matt Forte, RB CHI
3.09 Mike Wallace, WR PIT
5.07 Robert Griffin III, QB WAS
5.11 Marques Colston, WR NO
6.11 Kendall Wright, WR TEN
6.12 Michael Vick, QB PHI
8.04 Brandon Pettigrew, TE DET
8.06 Ronnie Hillman, RB DEN
10.04 Michael Bush, RB CHI
10.05 Vincent Brown, WR SD
Best Value Pick: There are a lot of options to choose from for this honor. Forte and Wallace falling to the mid third round was well past their average draft position entering this draft and Gator grabbed both with back-to-back picks. Michael Vick in the late sixth round was also a steal. Even if he does have injury concerns, as so many owners fear, on this team, he is paired with heralded rookie RGIII.
Biggest Risk: If forced to choose a risky pick, in light of recent news, I would point out the injury history of both Nicks and Colston, but with Wallace and the upside of Wright and Brown, I don’t think that is a huge concern.
Other picks of note: Dustin Keller (13.08), Willis McGahee (14.05)
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Michael Vick
RB = Chris Johnson
WR = Hakeem Nicks
TE = Brandon Pettigrew
FLEX = Matt Forte
FLEX = Mike Wallace
FLEX = Marques Colston
Year One Outlook: Jarrett did a great job of moving around the draft board when value presented itself. He built a contending team with a veteran starting squad and some youth with upside at each position on his bench. He also solidly handcuffed the Bears and Broncos running back tandem. This is one of my favorite teams among the 24 HA owners and I see this as a contender in 2012 and beyond.
Peter Hodes- Knights Who Say Ni @PHodes
* Wanted to put together a balanced team.
* I had targets for each round, sometimes only one or two players who I really wanted over others and sometimes a larger range of players who I would be happy with.
* I was active in trading up or down in the draft in order to get my targeted players.
* Usually take youth over age.
1.04 Ray Rice, RB BAL
2.02 Ryan Mathews, RB SD
2.03 Kenny Britt, WR TEN
4.12 Stevie Johnson, WR BUF
6.05 David Wilson, RB NYG
6.06 Philip Rivers, QB SD
8.09 Coby Fleener, TE IND
10.06 Stevan Ridley, RB NE
10.09 Josh Freeman, QB TB
Best Value Pick: Like the Hyper side where the FFGhost stole Ryan Mathews in the second round, Peter was able to do the same thing as he fell out of the first round. Considering that Mathews will serve as the RB2 for this team behind Rice makes it even better.
Biggest Risk: The biggest risk Peter took in this draft was going so young at the tight end spot. By the eighth round, Peter was looking at a strong team and a likely playoff contender. He had no tight end yet and chose the upside of Colts rookie Coby Fleener. I really like Fleener and already rank him as a top 12 tight end, but Peter chose him over Jermaine Gresham and Antonio Gates, both of whom could have been penciled in as solid starters. Peter backed up Fleener with veterans Kellen Winslow in the 15th round and Marcedes Lewis (23rd round).
Other picks of note: Darrius Heyward-Bey (11.10), Jon Baldwin (11.11)
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Philip Rivers
RB = Ray Rice
WR = Kenny Britt
TE = Kellen Winslow
FLEX = Ryan Mathews
FLEX = Stevie Johnson
FLEX = Stevan Ridley
Year One Outlook: The Knights went somewhat against the grain. As many owners were gobbling up wide receivers early, Peter took two of the first four running backs off the board in Ray Rice and Mathews. Most lineups will be dominated by pass catchers in the flex positions, while the Knights will send out at least three runners in most weeks. I like this team long term and can see this as a playoff team in year one.
Andrew Garda- The Fighting Mooses @AndrewGarda
* I knew I was going against some tough characters in this draft and more than anything I wanted to chase value, not position. With a set up that allows maximum flexibility (starting multiple WRs/TE/RBs) I knew that if I got the best of those three positions early and loaded up, I should be in a great position.
* I had actually settled on Calvin Johnson early on, figuring that Arian Foster would go at #1, even in a PPR. My thought was that I would secure the best receiver in the league and still be in good position to grab some running backs throughout the draft.
* Of course, Megatron went first and I was more than happy to go with Foster. At that point, I just decided to tweak my plan—instead of following up a receiver a with a running back, I did the opposite.
* I think I was able to get enormous value with players coming off injury – a bit risky, but even if they have issues this year, they should be fine long term. Andre Johnson in the late second, Adrian Peterson in the third, (backed up by Toby Gerhart because I’m a risk taker, not an idiot). I feel like I was able to get tremendous value with both Dwayne Bowe and Brandon Lloyd and, in fact, feel as though I have multiple potential WR1s.
* Same with the RBs. In a PPR league, Michael Turner isn’t a RB1, but as a 2 or 3? Just fine.
* I built a solid core group of starters (including Eli Manning and Ryan Fitzpatrick as quarterbacks), then started looking for value depth—Alshon Jeffery early, Marvin Jones, Russell Wilson later.
* Again, it’s all part of the BPA concept – I want whatever value comes to me, with an eye towards filling out those WR/RB positions that are worth the most. I think it worked out OK.
1.02 Arian Foster, RB HOU
2.11 Andre Johnson, WR HOU
3.02 Adrian Peterson, RB MIN
4.11 Dwayne Bowe, WR KC
5.02 Eli Manning, QB NYG
7.02 Brandon Lloyd, WR NE
8.11 Alshon Jeffrey, WR CHI
9.02 Michael Turner, RB ATL
10.11 Owen Daniels, TE HOU
Best Value Pick: None
Biggest Risk: At the second/third round turn, Andrew grabbed veterans coming off injuries in Adrian Peterson and Andre Johnson. If these two return to form, Garda could have one of the top teams in the league. If not, it will be a long season for the Mooses. While I do expect another season or two of top production form both players, they are clearly on the downhill slide when considering their dynasty value.
Other picks of note: Toby Gerhart (14.11), Russell Wilson (20.11)
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Eli Manning
RB = Arian Foster
WR = Andre Johnson
TE = Owen Daniels
FLEX = Dwayne Bowe
FLEX = Adrian Peterson
FLEX = Brandon Lloyd
Year One Outlook: The Fighting Mooses should be a strong contender and almost certainly a playoff team in 2012, but has some work to do for long term value. Andrew did add some rookies and other youth to his roster in the later rounds, such as Marvin Jones (12.11) and Russell Wilson, but mostly continued to focus on solid veterans like both Randy and Santana Moss at the 15th/16th round turn. This is one team that a major injury could be detrimental to, but if he can withstand that, this is a short term contender.
Nishant Shailendra- Karma Police @FourThinInches
* Having played in other leagues and done mocks with some of the people in this league, I know they are all receiver crazy. Go against the grain and load up on running back early and often to maximize value
* Don’t draft a quarterback early. Every year (after the top 3-4), there are a number of quarterbacks who could have top 5-10 finishes – find one in the later rounds.
* Avoid drafting above 28 years of age at every position except quarterback. Unless your Dynasty team is in win now mode, you won’t be able to trade aging players away for much down the road.
* In later rounds, target young players (under 26) people may have given up on – they might see a resurgence in their career.
* Try to draft one very good, very young prospect at each position
* End up with either Andrew Luck or RGIII
* Try not to trade future draft picks away
1.05 LeSean McCoy, RB PHI
2.08 Darren McFadden, RB OAK
3.05 Doug Martin, RB TB
4.08 Miles Austin, WR DAL
5.05 Vincent Jackson, WR TB
6.08 DeSean Jackson, WR PHI
7.05 Tony Romo, QB DAL
8.08 Jacquizz Rodgers, RB ATL
9.05 Jake Locker, QB TEN
10.08 Jared Cook, TE TEN
Best Value Pick: Rarely is your first round pick your best value, but that is the case here as typical top three pick LeSean McCoy fell to fifth overall and Nishant made his easiest decision of the draft.
Biggest Risk: None
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Tony Romo
RB = LeSean McCoy
WR = Miles Austin
TE = Jared Cook
FLEX = Darren McFadden
FLEX = Vincent Jackson
FLEX = DeSean Jackson
Other picks of note: Santonio Holmes (11.05), Jay Cutler (12.08)
Year One Outlook: Karma Police avoided the hyped rookies and youth for the most part, with the exception of the rookie runner Doug Martin in the third, and also made no trades during the draft. Instead, he sat back and took the veteran value that fell to him and built a solid starting lineup with some upside players like Martin, Jacquizz Rodgers, and Jake Locker as reserves. What this team lacks in flash, it will make up for in consistent scoring from the running backs and wide receivers. If Jared Cook (or Greg Olsen) can finally make the leap to a very good TE1, this team has a chance to go a long way. I see the Police in the playoffs in 2012.
The Fighting Fitzpatricks- Brian Quinlan @BNQuinlan
* I tend to go into drafts with the intent of best player available at position of need. I initially started with the 11th pick, so my plan was to target best available receiver (I figured AJ Green, Julio Jones or possibly Hakeem Nicks would be there). When I was presented with the opportunity to trade up for what I deemed a very reasonable price (I gave up 1.11, 2.02, 9.11 and 1.11 for 1.07, 3.07, 9.07 and 11.07) I jumped at it and drafted Aaron Rodgers. Securing a top three quarterback for the next five years was worth giving up a second round pick. The trade, of course, put a wrench in my initial plan.
* I had to wait all the way til 3.07 for my next pick and was thrilled to find Victor Cruz there. Sure, Roddy White and Mike Wallace were available, but for with Cruz being much younger than White and, in my opinion, a better long term option than Wallace, I went for the guy I liked. Four picks later, I went Demarco Murray, so at that point my thinking was I have three very good #1’s at QB/RB/WR. After that, my goal was to go best player available. I knew I wanted to match up Jordy Nelson with Rodgers in the fourth and was happy to be able to do so.
* I traded my 5th round pick for a 2013 1st round as a plan for the future contingency. Having 2 1st round picks next year will come in handy I’m sure.
* Once I got Vernon Davis in the sixth, my plan was to mix youth and upside with veteran value. Frank Gore in the 10th and Reggie Wayne in the 12th were solid picks. Andy Dalton and Christian Ponder as my QB2/3 should provide great trade value as they mature into solid starters and I added Ryan Mallet as a longer term guy who I can sit on for 2-3 years or use as trade bait. Getting LaGarrette Blount in the 14th seems like a can’t miss as my fifth RB – at minimum, he may end up as a touchdown vulture.
* Ben Tate is arguably the best #2 RB in the league. His 940 yards and four touchdowns merit great production and if Foster goes down, he immediately becomes a must start.
* And ye,s I targeted some Buffalo Bills, but purposely did not worry about getting Stevie as I think I can get solid production from David Nelson in the slot and Donald Jones has the potential to blow up if he can stay healthy and progress. I dont think TJ Graham is gonna beat out Jones opposite Stevie. I feel thin at tight end with Scott Chandler as my backup. He wont do anything in terms of PPR, but does have a knack for getting touchdowns (one for every 6.3 receptions last year).
* I knew I wanted the Bills defense. First, so I can root for them, but second, and most importantly, because I love Wandstedt as a DC and they have the look of a defense that is on the rise. I took the Steelers as a second defense, because they always seem to have a solid unit.
* Lestar Jean and Ricardo Lockette are both guys I liked coming out of college and believe they will reward me for picking them in a couple years.
* Shonn Greene was the only player who I actually groaned about when hitting the draft button. Let’s face it – the Jets don’t have a quarterback, so they have no choice but to run and that alone should help him earn his keep.
1.07 Aaron Rodgers, QB GB
3.07 Victor Cruz, WR NYG
3.11 DeMarco Murray, RB DAL
4.02 Jordy Nelson, WR GB
6.02 Vernon Davis, TE SF
7.11 Ben Tate, RB HOU
8.02 Austin Collie, WR IND
9.07 Shonn Greene, RB NYJ
10.02 Frank Gore, RB SF
Best Value Pick: Entering this draft, aging 49er runner Gore carried an average draft position of 58 (5.10 in a 12 team draft) and Brian chose him early in a the 10th round – 51 picks after his ADP. Gore may not have many more years as a starting quality player, but that value is hard to pass up.
Biggest Risk: Choosing Colts wide receiver Austin Collie in the early eighth round was over three rounds earlier than his ADP. Other wide receiver options with the 8.02 pick included rookies Stephen Hill, Alshon Jeffrey, Brian Quick, Rueben Randle, along with Chargers Robert Meachem and Vincent Brown. Each of these players (and others from different positions) offer more upside than Collie.
Other picks of note: Andy Dalton (11.07), Reggie Wayne (12.02), LeGarrette Blount (14.02)
Possible Starting Lineup:
QB = Aaron Rodgers
RB = DeMarco Murray
WR = Victor Cruz
TE = Vernon Davis
FLEX = Jordy Nelson
FLEX = Frank Gore
FLEX = Reggie Wayne
Year One Outlook: It is hard not to label any team sending out Aaron Rodgers as the starting quarterback as a contender, but I see this team as a middle of the pack finisher, possibly making a playoff push. The end of solid production could be very near for both Reggie Wayne and Frank Gore. Jordy Nelson could easily regress, scoring fewer touchdowns.
In the next article in the series, I’ll take a look at the final six teams on the ACTIVE side of the league.
Ryan McDowell can be found on Twitter at @RyanMc23 and on the forums as dlf_ryanm