Editor’s Note: The Member Corner articles come from a group of writers selected from our Writer’s Contest we had a few months ago. These writers all showed great interest in having their work posted and we’re excited to offer them the ability to do that. Keep in mind all the articles in the Member Corner are not edited by DLF, nor do they always necessarily reflect the collective opinions of us. However, we have approved these writers because of their ability and passion for writing. We hope you enjoy this whole new revamped section of DLF!
Patience, is the state of endurance under difficult circumstances, which can mean persevering in the face of delay or provocation without acting on annoyance/anger in a negative way; or exhibiting forbearance when under strain, especially when faced with longer-term difficulties. Patience is the level of endurance one can take before negativity. It is also used to refer to the character trait of being steadfast.
What a fickle thing being a dynasty owner is sometimes. For us the season never ends. We are always plotting and scheming. Should I go after this player? Should I try to acquire a few extra picks? Should I package up some of those extra picks to move up a couple of spots in the next draft? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked myself each one of these questions. The problem that I see with a lot of dynasty owners is that there is a complete and utter lack of patience, from people in my own leagues or right here on our very own DLF forums. There were so many owners that traded up in this past draft to acquire players like Trent Richardson, Doug Martin, RG3, Andrew Luck, Justin Blackmon, David Wilson and Michael Floyd. Now it seems because of a lack of instant gratification owners are already cutting some of the above mentioned players loose before their careers even truly begin.
Being a dynasty owner for the better part of a decade I can tell you that being patient is the most important part of being a dynasty owner. With great patience comes great planning. You have to plan ahead. What’s the point of putting in so much time and energy into your research if you lack a tangible plan? Not many rookies come into the NFL and take it by storm like A.J. Green, Julio Jones, and Trent Richardson. To expect this type of production out of your rookie players displays a certain amount of ignorance (or maybe you are an AJG or Julio owner and were spoiled rotten last year). Most rookies take 2-3 years to develop these days. So ask yourself this question. When you draft a player, how long are you willing to commit a roster spot to this player to let him develop?
Through week 6 only Richardson, RG3 and Luck have put up the kind of numbers you would “expect” out of a rookie that was so highly regarded heading into the 2012 season. So what about Martin, Blackmon, Wilson, and Floyd? While Martin has put up decent numbers so far, he hasn’t exactly lit the world on fire by any means and it’s starting to seem like Blount is going to vulture every goal line opportunity. Blackmon definitely doesn’t look like the sure-fire WR1 everyone thought he would be. Wilson has already landed in Tom Coughlin’s doghouse (although it seems like he’s steadily inching his way out), and Floyd has been probably the most disappointing thus far as he was unable to win a WR3 job on a very thin Arizona roster and is squandering opportunities when he is out there on the field.
So here is where the lack of patience comes into play. Being a very active member of the DLF forums I see so many trade proposals that involve either acquiring or trading away players like Martin, Blackmon, Wilson and Floyd. To me, most of the trades I’ve seen proposed are literally giving away these players for pennies on the dollar. This leads me to my next question. What exactly was your plan when you either stood pat to draft the player you believed in or traded up to acquire the player you so desperately wanted? Surely it wasn’t to give up on them 6 weeks into their rookie seasons only to give them away for a 1st rd pick next year and start this process all over again, was it?
For me, I usually look at player development in 3 year increments. Hopefully the players that I draft show enough promise within the first year or two that it makes my decision to hold onto them for an additional year a no brainer, but what about the guys that have just absolutely tanked for two years? Take for instance Darrius Heyward-Bey. His numbers through two years were terrible. He only put up a stat line of 35/490/2 over the course of 26 games (25 in which he started). How many owners held him for two years and dropped him before the 2011 season in which he put up a stat line of 64/975/4? Hanging onto him for that extra year (even though it probably killed you to do it) saw the Raiders bring in Carson Palmer and almost instantly revitalize DHB’s career making him a nice weekly flex option for your dynasty teams.
Remind you of anyone that came into the NFL this year? You guessed it. Mr. Justin Blackmon. I see him in a very similar situation but with far superior talent. Think about it for a second. How much did Blackmon’s rookie draft stock fall just because of the simple fact he was drafted by the Jaguars? He went from a guaranteed top 3 pick (in 1 QB leagues) to free falling like Tom Petty all the way into the 5-8 range. That’s a significant drop in such a short amount of time. Yeah the 2nd DUI didn’t help his cause any but if I was a betting man (which I am, I play fantasy football remember?) I’d say the biggest reason for his fall was because of situation. If Blackmon’s struggles continue into next season or the season after that, who will the Jaguars bring in to revitalize Blackmon’s career? You’ve got to assume that if the struggles continue in Jacksonville that they have to pull the plug on the Blaine Gabbert project sooner rather than later, right?
The good news is there is a flip side to this story for dynasty owners that display a vast amount of patience. If you don’t own any of these players, now is the perfect time to swoop in and buy at an all time low. These are players you were dying to have on your rosters not that long ago. There hasn’t been enough football played yet to change anything. Take advantage of the impatience being displayed in your own backyards. The real question is: Are you the predator, or the prey?