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The Law of Averages

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!

Being reactive instead of proactive is a common flaw I see in a lot of dynasty owners these days.  Coaches sit around and wait for trade offers to come their way.  It just doesn’t happen.  During the season, I’m lucky if I receive four or five trade offers in each one of my leagues (and most of them are so far off, I don’t even consider them an actual offer).  The best way to make your team a contender in a hurry is by successfully negotiating trade offers.  Yeah, drafting helps too, but the turn around on draft picks can take time.  In this article I’d like to focus on taking advantage of something the corporate sales world likes to refer to as, “working your law of averages.”

The whole law of averages concept isn’t a new one.  It’s been around as long as I can remember.  To put it into its simplest terms, the law of averages basically states that one out of every ten sales pitches (or trade offers in our case) are going to result in a sale.

Here’s the deal.

If you submit ten trade offers either through your league website, or via text (which I feel is the best way to get trade negotiations started), the law of averages says that one of those ten trade offers are going to be accepted.  Now, they may not get accepted as you originally sent them, but that’s why we call them “negotiations.”

On the other hand, let’s say that you put ten offers out there and not one of them gets accepted.  This is where determination comes into play.  You have to “work” the law of averages.  Put out another ten offers.  It is mathematically proven that two of those offers have a high probability of getting accepted.  If the second time around doesn’t work out, keep the offers coming and eventually the law of averages will work into your favor.

Being a successful salesperson, I can tell you that just because you get into a slump, it’s not the end of the world. You have to believe that every “no” is getting is getting you closer to a “yes.”  One of my all time favorite quotes from any movie is from Boiler Room.  The quote goes a little something like this, “A sale is made on every call you make.  Either you sell the client some stock or he sells you a reason he can’t.  Either way a sale is made, the only question is who is going to close?  You or him?” Sound familiar?  It’s a chess match I constantly play when negotiating a trade.

The law of averages is never going to work for you if you’re always sending lopsided offers clearly in your favor.  The biggest mistake I see coaches make when sending out offers is sending a blind offer.  To me, a blind offer means you didn’t take the time to really dissect your potential trade partner’s roster.  You just saw a player on their roster you wanted to acquire and sent out an offer with no regard to what his team needs are – these types of offers are always going to get declined, and most likely with no counter.  Am I saying start off with your absolute best offer?  No, absolutely not.  However, at least have the decency to make an offer that you think has a good chance of at least getting a counter, and go from there.  Take the two extra minutes to truly examine your potential trade partner’s roster and determine their biggest team need.

This all sounds like a lot of work, right?

Well if your reading this article right now, chances are you are just as obsessed with dynasty football as the rest of us here at DLF.  You probably spend multiple hours per week thinking about it.  Put that time to good use.  Setting your lineup every week and hoping for the best isn’t good enough.  Be an active member of your league.  Action causes reaction.  I guarantee you that every coach in your league has multiple players on their rosters you would love to acquire.  How many times has another coach acquired a player you wanted to get a hold of?  Were you just thinking about landing that player or were you proactively putting together deals to make your goal a reality?

Championships aren’t just going to be handed to you.  You’ve got to earn them.  Sitting back and waiting for the offers to start pouring in is a recipe for disaster.  Is that the type of coach you want to be?  Start putting offers out there.  Using this practice helps you in more ways than just stockpiling your roster.  It helps you master the art of negotiating.  Also, it’s going to make your offers a lot more likely to receive a counter offer, you’re putting the time and effort into making legitimate offers.

Every player is available for the right price, and that price is almost always negotiable.

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Robert Bralski
10 years ago

Great article! I needed some motivation to keep putting trade offers out there.

flyersfan1981
10 years ago

Nice timing…looking for a bit of advice from anyone willing to give it. I feel I have a team that can compete for the next 2-3 years, but I am being battered with injuries at RB, here is my team:

Rodgers, Fitzpatrick
MJD, Mendy, Dwyer, Daryl Richardson/Pead, Helu
Colston, Demaryius Thomas, Titus Young, Torrey Smith, Jerome Simpson
Celek

The Doug Martin is looking to move him, and I have some interest as he looks to be the real deal and will likely be a 20-touch back for the forseeable future. Would you:

A) Try and move Colston, MJD or Mendy/Dwyer for Martin

B) Rather than depleting depth, make a bigger move and deal Rodgers for Peyton, Doug Martin, and Alshon Jeffrey

I am so torn on this as I drafted Rodgers in our startup to be my cornerstone, but I have taken the advice of some on here and am trying to look at a 3 year window where I think Peyton will produce at close to Rodgers level, and I can keep my depth at other positions…any thoughts would be appreciated…good luck to all!!

John Tucker MD
Reply to  flyersfan1981
10 years ago

It depends on what the other team is trying to do.. rebuild or win now.. I would try and offer MJD + a wr and see if that works… but if the person you’re trying to trade with is a real Fantasy Wizard he may have his own ideas

flyersfan1981
Reply to  John Tucker MD
10 years ago

Well he is in total rebuild mode…Rodgers would be an attractive player for him…I am just so torn on this…

Charles Austin
10 years ago

I don’t think mathematically proven means what you think it means.

Adam
Reply to  Charles Austin
10 years ago

I totally agree. That ruined the article for me. The whole concept that 1 in 10 trade offers are statistically proven is nonsense. Add in that the law of averages is mathematical nonsense and well, you’ve got a bad article.

This article would be much better if the message was simply, “Don’t wait for offers; be proactive and send fair and thoughtful trades so your league-mates don’t find you to be an annoying trade-spammer.” Then include a couple of good examples from leagues you follow to round it out.

brian
Reply to  Adam
10 years ago

I agree. There have been several articles as of late that in and of themselves, have the ability to be decent/good articles. It’s almost like the authors feel like they need a hook/gimmick/clever insight in order to make the article work.

Making the edits you suggested would have made a world of difference.

KEEP IT SIMPLE!

Eric
10 years ago

The law of averages does not exist. If you flip a coin 99 times and it’s heads 99 times, the probability of it landing on tails the 100th is still 50/50. The coin has no memory nor does it care.

Reply to  Eric
10 years ago

What you’re describing isn’t what is called the “Law of Averages” which is also known as the “Law of Large Numbers”. What you’re describing is the concept of independent events. You are correct that the coin doesn’t have any memory. However, the more and more that you do something, the closer your experimental probability (what is happening) will get to your theoretical probability (what should happen). You could get 10 heads in a row on a coin, and the next flip will always be .5 probability of a heads;however, if you flip it 1000 times it should be close to 500 and 500.

Keith Fortier
10 years ago

Great article. Noone does dynasty better than DLF. Noone! Also, Boiler Room.. Top 25 movie easy. Solid.

I’m trying to move Peyton and was waiting for offers. Time to get moving.

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