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!
*Editor’s Note – For total team evaluations, please be sure to use the DLF Newsletter Team Advice Form!*
- I own Michael Floyd and have been asked to name my price re draft picks for him. I love the guy but given everyone has a price, what would you want for him in draft picks? – Russ in England
As can be seen in my dynasty receiver rankings, I’m extremely high on the Michael Floyd. And ultimately, why shouldn’t I be? He’s a perfect blend of size and speed, is a former first-round pick, broke out relatively early in the NFL (over 1,000 yards in his second season), and can run every route on the field. To that last point, while Larry Fitzgerald and John Brown are certainly good in their own right, they’re also limited in their route trees, with the former typically winning in the short to intermediate game, and the latter functioning as a lid lifter. Floyd can do all of the above.
The crux of the problem lies in the fact that there are only so many footballs to go around, but even towards the end of the 2015 season we saw quarterback Carson Palmer make a strong effort to get Floyd the ball. To that end, he received at least eight targets in six of the eight games to close the season, including what essentially amounted to an exhibition in week 17. During that stretch he rewarded owners with five 100-yard games, and four total touchdowns, showing an elite ceiling. And all told, isn’t that the type of upside you’d be looking for, but not necessarily receiving, in a rookie pick anyhow? Again, I know I’m higher than most, and even despite the crowded situation in the desert there’s no way I’d let Floyd go for anything less than pick 1.03.
- My receivers are Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, DeAndre Hopkins, Brandon Marshall and Rishard Matthews. I have been considering trying to trade Julio Jones for possibly a lower level WR1, and a draft pick or another player. I am fielding offers such as Allen Robinson and pick, Keenan Allen and pick, Brandin Cooks and a pick, or Emmanuel Sanders and pick. Do you think this is a smart move, and if so which offer makes the most sense? We can start up to four receivers. – Johannes in PA
Ultimately, it’s all going to come back to value. Of the names you listed above, I’d say that Allen Robinson is likely 90% of the way to Julio Jones’ value, Keenan Allen and Brandin Cooks are 80% of the way there, and Emmanuel Sanders is perhaps, unjustly so in my opinion, 50% of Jones’ worth. As such you should be looking to get a high first (a la 1.01) thrown in with Sanders, something in the top 3-5 for Allen or Cooks, and a mid-to-late first with A-Rob.
With that said though, Jones was the second-best fantasy receiver last year, taking a backseat only to another player you have rostered in Brandon Marshall (note that I’m factoring efficiency into the equation here). He was a PPR WR1 a whopping ten times in 16 games, easily trumping any of the players you’d be receiving via trade. I understand the meaning of value, but what you already have is possibly the best combination of four receivers in fantasy, sans only Odell Beckham. I think I’d lean towards riding the lightning with who you have.
- A lot has been said about Chip Kelly’s fast-paced offense. But a lot of other teams also run their own versions of no huddle, quick tempo schemes at times during a game. So in the end, how many more plays on average does Kelly’s offense run, and does it really have an affect on how someone ranks the players? – GBDiehard in WI
As the famous quote goes, “It’s not about the X’s and O’s, it’s the Jimmys and Joes.” In other words, no matter the system, or the coach, if you don’t have great players then it’s hard to bank on great statistics. To that point, the 2015 Philadelphia Eagles, led by coach Chip Kelly, had the 12th most total yards in the league – certainly above average, but far from the league’s elite. It’s not terribly hard to understand – when your quarterback is Sam Bradford, your top receiver is Jordan Matthews, and your running back situation is convoluted, you just don’t have the horses in the stable.
San Francisco is in even worse shape. At the moment they don’t have a quarterback, their top receiver is a one-trick pony deep threat, and their running back, Carlos Hyde, doesn’t seem to offer the type of “dual threat” ability Kelly covets. Truth be told I’d be more inclined to drop Hyde down my board rather than move him up. So long story short, no, I don’t think the system influences how I look at players – if Chip had a LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson or Jeremy Maclin to work with I’d rank them accordingly, based upon their individual talents. In the Bay Area, unfortunately, that type of talent simply doesn’t exist.
- I play in a 12-man keeper league where we roster 20 players total and keep three (our cuts are after week 3 of preseason), forever if we want. When draft time comes, I always struggle with how to value rookies or second-year players, and when to draft them versus a high floor veteran. Do I draft as a standard redraft and decide on keepers after the season, or do I pick a rookie early and hope they pan out? Is Ezekiel Elliott a defacto first round pick in any keeper format? – Mike in MI
With only three keepers per team, and 36 total, I think you have to treat this more like a redraft. 85 percent of your team is going to turn over each and every season, so I just don’t see the point in looking at your roster in anything more than a one-year window. Yes, it would be great to have a guy like Todd Gurley or Amari Cooper anchoring your team for years to come, but guys like Matt Forte and Julian Edelman are going to be just as valuable. At the end of the day, you want guys who are going to help you win here and now, and your keepers should be the ones who will be able to do the same for the following year.
As for Ezekiel Elliott, I’m find with him coming off the board in your first round. Once again, for all intents and purposes you’ll be starting off with the 37th best fantasy player, and Elliott appears likely to be in the range of best available asset. If you can keep him on a yearly basis that’s all the better, but it’s not the reason I’d be picking him – once again, given the players available, there’s a good chance he’ll help you win as much as anyone else.
- In my dynasty league I have Alfred Morris. He has declined in total yardage each year he has been in the league. Is his career over? Do I try and make him part of a trade package in 2016, or can he come back to a productive fantasy producer? Also, what about David Cobb’s future in the NFL? He is another guy sitting on my bench as a developmental player. I turned down a trade offer because he was apart of it. – Larry in AZ
While I certainly don’t think he career is over, it’s hard to see Alfred Morris garnering the type of workload he did in previous years. The fact is that most teams employ a multi-back system, and he just doesn’t function in the passing game. Ideally we’d see him go to a good offense, enabling him to close games out as the clock killer, but there’s no way for certain we can predict that. I’d hang onto him for sure, but if he can add 5-10 percent of value to a larger deal where you’re acquiring the best asset, I wouldn’t hesitate to sell him off.
As for the Titans’ David Cobb, it was disappointing he wasn’t able to do much to stake his claim as the lead dog in the Tennessee backfield. Obviously he was hurt and missed half of the season, and he can’t be blamed for that, but the fact is he now remains unestablished, and the Titans had arguably the league’s worst running game. With several high profile free agent running backs, I wouldn’t be shocked to see the team upgrade the position, and honestly I’d be selling now in an effort to hedge on that possibility. Cobb is a fine player, but much like with Morris above, I view him as a means to an end in a larger deal.
- You have the 10-12th pick in the first round of a 2016 dynasty draft. Regardless of your team needs, rank amongst the following what you’d most like to do with this pick:1) Keep the pick and draft best player available
2) Trade pick for multiple later round 2016 picks
3) Trade pick for 2017 a 1st round pick
4) Trade pick for current RB3/WR3/back-half TE1 player.
–Joe in NM
Almost always I’m going to take option No. 4, provided that player has a high likelihood of cracking my starting lineup. I’m certainly not opposed to the idea of rookie picks, but the fact remains that a significant majority of them will wind up not panning out. And while I agree with the point Nathan Powell made in his stance on rookies accruing value when they go into their second year, the fact remains that a fantasy point gap is going to already exist if you stack them side by side next to established veterans.
After that I’d put options No. 1 and 3 almost side by side. If there’s a player you like, you should take him and roll the dice he pans out. If you’re unsure about who’s left, roll it back a year and bank on the chance the 2017 class is as good as advertised. All told, this is going to come down to personal preference.
If the class is deep, and you’re a fan of multiple players remaining and value them equally as the late first round types, then by all means go with option No. 2. I’m not sure I see it this year, and much like in the NFL, draft capital is typically a fairly good indicator of success. But once again this is going to come down to personal belief, and if you can nab the Tyler Lockett or Jeremy Langford of 2016, you’ll have done quite well.
7.I was offered this deal by an owner in my League: receive Kelvin Benjamin, Demaryius Thomas, and 2017 first and third round picks, and give Odell Beckham, the Vikings defense and a 2017 second round pick. Would you do the deal? – Pat in MD
In a heartbeat. I know I spoke above about how OBJ is one of the top receivers in all of dynasty, but the dirty little secret that people are ignoring is that Broncos’ pass catcher Demaryius Thomas is right up there with him. I’m aware he’s “over the hill” at 28, and had a “bad” season (by bizarrely irrational standards), but this is a guy who has been a PPR WR1 for the past four seasons. There are a lot of quality receivers right now, many of them younger than Thomas, but that doesn’t mean he should be devalued – the guy remains a top-tier asset in my eyes, and he’s already 85 percent of the way to Beckham. Adding in the returning Kelvin Benjamin, who was a PPR WR2 in his rookie season, and the swapping of your second rounder for his first, and this has the makings of a big time win for you.
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