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The DLF Mailbag

Eric_Decker

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.

3.) Your chance of getting your question answered is inversely proportional to the length of the question.

Let’s get to it!

1.) I own both Cam Newton and Colin Kaepernick.  Should I trade one?  My only top 25 WR is Eric Decker.  What would be fair value for one of the QBs? Scott in Wareham, MA

I would.  I’m of the opinion that in a 12-team, 1 QB league having two solid starters at QB is a waste of value.  Every week you have points sitting on your bench that could be converted in to a weekly starter via trade.

My recommendation would be to trade Colin Kaepernick not Cam Newton.  Kaep is at a very high value right now with a relatively small sample size of games.  I like him, but he carries some risk.  Even Cam’s value has taken a significant hit since this time last year.  He was typically a first round start-up pick then and now he’s a late second.

As I often say, what you will get in your league for a QB is a function of the other rosters.  Unless several teams are hoarding good QBs, there should be six or seven teams besides yourself that have no interest in Kaep.  Although maybe the Tom Brady or Peyton Manning owner is getting nervous about age and might want to buy their next QB.

On value, I think the range of WR that I’d want for Kaep would be guys like Kenny Britt, Jeremy Maclin, Marques Colston or Justin Blackmon.  Just depends on your taste.  Each has pluses and minuses in this range.

2.) I’m up against the cap in the second year of our league.  I have the 1.03 which costs $12 of $200.  Am I selling low to give the 1.03, 2014 2nd for Lamar Miller ($4, 3), 2014 1st?  – Jeff in Jersey

It’s close.

It would be nice to get this deal done without having to include your second, but I’m sure you tried that already.  Getting a 2014 first coming back is very nice.

If you are going to have to cut players you like in order to roster the 1.03, but not to roster Miller, this is an easy decision.  Just go for it.  Sometimes you have to make moves in SC leagues that look strange to people who play normal dynasty.  But the cap is the cap.

If you don’t have to do that, this comes down to how strongly you feel about Lamar Miller.  The buzz around him is good and he’s moving up draft boards rapidly.  Still, he isn’t a player I’m targeting.  As is evidenced by this trade offer, his price tag has climbed to a point where I don’t think he’s a buy.  Others in the fantasy community strongly disagree with me on this topic.

Net/net: If you can’t afford the 1.03, chances are this is the best deal you’re going to get as other owners will prey on you too.  If you can, then you need to make an honest assessment of how much you like Miller.  Remember you can’t get totally killed in this deal because you have the 2014 first that will always have good value.

3.) We have a three spot practice squad.  I’m drafting 13th.  Do you feel Marcus Lattimore is worth the risk at that point? – David in Indiana

Marcus Lattimore would need to nearly go undrafted in the NFL Draft to fall to the #13 pick in leagues without practice squads.  There’s no way he’ll be there for you at that point in your format.  Remember, Lattimore was projected by most to be the 1.01 rookie pick.  While his injuries were severe, others have come back to successful careers from similar ones.  I’d take Lattimore any time after about the 1.06 based on what we know today.

4.) Should I give the rookie picks 1.08 and 2.01 for Kaepernick? My QB’s are Cutler, Flacco, and Alex Smith.  Chris in Vancouver, BC

That’s worth it to me.

Kaep has a good shot at being an every week starter in fantasy and almost surely is one for you.  That’s good use of decent, but not great rookie picks.

The other thing I like about this deal is you free up two (if not three) roster spots.  One from trading two for one, and at least one from cutting Alex Smith and maybe Joe Flacco as well.  You then have the ability to scour the waiver wire and add prospects at other positions.  And depending on how deep your rookie draft goes, maybe you can pick up some undrafted guys.  Never forget that in a two for one deal you are getting the player, plus the ability to add your favorite free agent to your team.

5.) Is a combo of RG3 or Russell Wilson with 1.02 (would still have Flacco as my backup) enough to get a top tier TE or low RB1/high RB2?Tony in Denver

Absolutely.  You are offering up some high caliber dynasty assets in this deal.

If you offer RG3/1.02:

  • At TE:  I’d want Jimmy Graham or Rob Gronkowski, plus a lesser first round pick.  RG3 alone is arguably worth about the same as these guys, but positional scarcity will cause you to have to take a hit in the draft.
  • At WR:  I’d want Dez Bryant or Demaryius Thomas for the package.  I don’t see getting AJ Green or Julio Jones, but you might.

If you offer R. Wilson/1.02:

  • At TE:  The only guy that would fit the bill is Aaron Hernandez.  The top two are out of reach and all the rest aren’t worth your package.
  • At WR:  I’d be looking for guys like Mike Wallace, Vincent Jackson or Michael Crabtree.

If you are up for dealing RG3, I’d recommend seeing what I could get for him without the 1.02.  You may be pleasantly surprised and then you have a nice trade asset for closer to draft time.

6.) How do I plan for a 12-team PPR startup that includes a QB flex position? Jason in Louisville

Plan for a ton of QBs to be off the board early.

Here are some high level recommendations:

A.) Set Your Normal QB Expectations and Biases Aside

QB values in this format skyrocket.  Generally QB is devalued in fantasy because there are plenty of starters to go around.  Not the case in this format.  Remember that on a bye week you could have only 26 starting QBs in the NFL but up to 24 starters in your league!

B.) Study the Math

The amazing thing about this format is that QBs who are considered fantasy garbage are every week starters.  In non-PPR in 2012:

  • Joe Flacco outscored every non-QB except ADP
  • Christian Ponder was the 29th best scoring player
  • Brandon Weeden only scored 15 fewer points than CJ Spiller

The point here is that you absolutely always want to be starting 2QBs in these formats, which means you need to roster three because of bye weeks.  And remember – with 12 teams not everyone can have three starters.

C.) Draft QBs Early and Often

I’d want to come out of the first four rounds (maybe three depending on the flow of the draft) with two QBs.  Even if I ended up overloaded, they are trade gold.

D.) Rookie QBs are Elevated Too

All the first round rookie picks are worth more in this format because extra QBs will be taken every year.  Blaine Gabbert was a surefire first round rookie in all 2QB leagues, thus making the picks after him more valuable.

E.) Roster Some Backups

At the end of the start-up draft, grab a couple of backup QBs who might end up in starting jobs.  Aside from the obvious ones (e.g. Matt Flynn, Michael Vick, Alex Smith), go after the likes of Ryan Mallett (FA ’15) and Kirk Cousins (injury risk to RG3).

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

23 Comments
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Burton Staggs
9 years ago

In regards to question 5.

I am looking at it from the mirror opposite. I have Big Ben and Jake Locker. Im stacked at WR, Megatron,Fitz,Julio,Randall Cobb,Make Wallace.

Ive wanted to trade up to an Elite QB. The only manager I can get to talk to me has Cam. His asking price has been Jimmy Gramham. I have Jared Cook there as a back up. Im thin.

What do you guys think.

Burton Staggs
Reply to  Burton Staggs
9 years ago

Forgot to add… Non PPR… 6pt TD. 20 rush/rec per point, 50 pass yards per point.. This seems to inflate the Elite QBs

Cyrus Miller
Reply to  Burton Staggs
9 years ago

I wouldn’t want to trade Jimmy Graham. I think you asked this question in another thread and I replied by going into the relative values in my league. You’d have to look at the relative values in your league, but I think Graham is an elite TE that gives a positional advantage.

I’d try to trade Fitz or Wallace for a QB. If nobody bites, maybe offer Cobb, but I consider Megatron and Julio to be the type of “positional advantage” that you would rather keep. If nobody is interested in trading an elite QB for even Cobb, then maybe consider Julio straight up for a top 5 QB.

Matt Wertz
9 years ago

Maybe the Kaep owner in my league over values him, but I know he couldn’t be had for Britt, Blackmon, Colston or Maclin.

Cyrus Miller
Reply to  Matt Wertz
9 years ago

I’m going to try offering Colston or Jennings for him. I’ll test the theory. (Kaep owner has Brees as well).

Taco
9 years ago

Kaep for those WRs?? The owner in my league would be ripped apart, top to bottom if he ever made that trade…

Reply to  Taco
9 years ago

People don’t seem to be willing to pay for Kaepernick despite what the hysteria seems to suggest. There are too many capable QBs out there in 12-team and even 14-team leagues that there are very few suitors to get a deal done or drive up the price and cash-in.

I own him in roughly 70% of my leagues and the offers have been less than stellar. I have seen some deals with him recently, though. In most cases I’ve dealt my other QB to get value back as many don’t seem to want to pay for Kaepernick.

The best I was offered for him in one 14-team league is Big Ben and the equivalent of an early 2nd (1.09 in a devy (college) player league). Needless to say, I still own him. Of all my leagues, I’ve only dealt him in one thus far.

That said, here are some of the deals I’ve seen with him recently:
1) Kaepernick/M.Bennett for Maclin
2) Kaepernick for Andy Dalton/T.Smith
3) Kapernick/M.Floyd for Crabtree

People like him and are pumping him up, but given the pleothora of high scoring QBs, as well as the risk factor given the small sample size, a huge cash-in value doesn’t really seem to be there right now from what I’ve seen. Tim’s value range seems to be appropriate.

Ryan Throckmorton
Reply to  Steve Wyremski
9 years ago

In full agreement here – as an owner and seller of Kaep, I would not have made a deal for any of those WRs and would not now on the team I still own him.

I dealt Kaep in one 16-teamer, it took some wrangling back and forth to get the value I wanted and it required my adding pieces. The final deal became:

Kaep/D.Rich/A. Jeffery/Rookie 2.24
for
Cutler/Dem. Thomas/Isaac Redman

I solely wanted Thomas and it took taking on Redman (ick) and adding the younger pieces to get the deal done. Mind you, this guy was starting Locker or Cutler too.

Reply to  Ryan Throckmorton
9 years ago

That’s a steal. Nicely done.

Ryan Throckmorton
Reply to  Steve Wyremski
9 years ago

Graze – my mistake, swap out Jeffrey for K. Wright. (I dealt both RG3 and Kaep this same offseason, having Wilson also; they each brought in Demaryius and Calvin, I mix up those deals).

Of those players, I see a lot of potential in Jeffrey (and Wright) but it took my including them to get the deal done for an elite WR. Kaep on his own was not enough to do it, nor was RG3 in my deal for Calvin. On both deals I had to include (a) a talented young WR with upside and (b) a 1st or 2nd round rookie pick. Oh, and (c) I had to target guys in need of a QB – RG3 to the Vick owner, Kaep to Locker/Cutler.

Scott Denton
9 years ago

Best offer for Kaep was Fitz- but got him without moving QB. Now being offered Ridley, Wallace, & Floyd (AZ) for Cam. Would you do it? Ridley would be my RB1.

Reply to  Scott Denton
9 years ago

Would have done the Fitz deal easily.

Seems like you need a RB. I think that’s a reasonable offer for Cam and something I’d do, yes. Personally, I’d try to swap Wallace for a comparable valued receiver as I’m not much of a Wallace fan long-term and you don’t know where he’ll end up in FA, but the value is there in this deal.

Scott Denton
9 years ago

Meant to rate as 5 and to say, “Thank you” to Tim for answering question 1 for me. Opposable Thumbs – new concept for me apparently.

SJ
9 years ago

Nice to see the 2 QB League stuff answered.

As a player in those FF formats, I love the new aspect it brings to drafting and shifting focus on fantasy talent. Nice to see you guys agree.

And I agree with your assessment there as well. QB3’s and 4’s are just as important in those leagues as your backup RB’s and WR’s. Nice game plan.

Billy Glen
Reply to  SJ
9 years ago

The 2qb advise is spot-on. In a 4-keeper league I decided to rebuild as my qbs were terrible (flacco was best but not worth keeping).

So I kept excellant rbs and wrs and drafted qbs with my first 3 picks: Luck, RG3 and Palmer. YOWZA!….Ended up taking the league.

In a start-up dynasty league I drafted Rodgers, Palmer and Locker. Thought I had my bye weeks covered with Locker until he got injured. There was absolutely no viable qb available. Fortunately, Locker came back just in time to cover for Rodger’s bye.

This is an intreaging format that really shakes things up.

James Young
Reply to  Billy Glen
9 years ago

Agreed, it brings so much more to Fantasy Football. I wish more leagues/players were open to it.

You wouldnt believe how hard it is to cover your bye weeks in a 2QB format in a dynasty. Makes for some interesting transactions I’ll tell u.

smudga
9 years ago

I love your stuff Tim but have to disagree with RG3 + 1.02 for Gronk/Graham.

Completely Accept beauty’s in the eye of the beholder and all that but I just don’t see that being enought to get it done (disclaimer Gronk owner…..and I know I wouldn’t give that too much thouhgt before hiting decline)

Cyrus Miller
Reply to  smudga
9 years ago

I agree with you, but it is interesting– I see plenty of examples of people trading Gronk for less, or overvaluing RG3 more.

Depends entirely on each league, I guess. In mine, I wouldn’t trade Graham for 1.02+RG3, but I might have to think about it a lot.

Marek
9 years ago

Kaep was traded along with jason Witten for gronkowski and a high fourth round FA/rookie draft in my keep nine 2 qb league.

Brett
9 years ago

I traded kaep about a month ago for 2013 1.1 rookie/free agent. Standard league with 12 teams 23 man roster.

Jason
9 years ago

Thanks for the response. With it being a QB Flex I wasn’t sure if I should simply treat it as a 2-QB league or just snag a top 5 QB with my first round pick and load up on RB/WR talent while waiting on a backup. Clearly, planning for two solid QB starters will put me in a great position.

It’s just hard to break that “draft your QB late” mentality. Drafting QBs like RBs breaks my brain a little. I do like that it makes QBs outside of the top 12 relevant though.

Ken Dogson
9 years ago

Reference the 12 team, multiple QB question.

This is one of my favorite formats. In a start up, draft QBs right away, preferably younger.

High on my list would be:

Rodgers, Ryan, Luck, Wilson, RG3, Colin K., Stafford, Newton, Flacco, and Dalton. I’m not really sold on Ponder long term.

Draft at least 3 starters, preferably 4. Plan to carry 1-2 developmental QBs on your roster as well, if space allows. I drafted Foles at 305, for example, in a 2012 start up.

I won the 2012 start up with Brady (acquired via trade) along with Luck and Dalton + Foles and Henne. The second highest scorer had Rodgers, Ryan, and P. Manning.

Those with only one or two mid tier QBs got creamed. One guy during the draft said something like, “You guys draft weird.” He hadn’t done the math. RBs come and go every few years it seems, franchise QBs play for a decade.

Ken Dogson
Reply to  Ken Dogson
9 years ago

Add Josh Freeman to that list above.

This was an all keeper league, hence the focus on youth.

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