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The DLF Dynasty Fantasy Football Mailbag

We open up the mailbag to answer your latest dynasty questions.

Trey Lance

Hey, loyal Dynasty League Football universe. I’ll be answering your mailbag questions this off-season and couldn’t be more excited to do so. The off-season is when dynasty league managers get to sit back and relax.

Wait. That’s completely incorrect.

The off-season is when we refine our strategies, look back at the year that’s past, the year to come, and everything in between. For this week’s questions, I asked the Twitterverse for some help. Going forward, you can send your questions to the DLF mailbag. Let’s dig in!

Our first question is one that I have been pondering myself for the last couple of months.

By default, I want to say that 2023 firsts are overvalued, but that’s based on what I’ve experienced in my own leagues. For example, I play in a league where I attempted to trade D’Andre Swift for a 2023 first and Damien Harris (as well as several other variations of the same deal) and was roundly rejected by every manager I sent an offer to, quickly and with no counter offers.

Just for a frame of reference using the Dynasty Trade Analyzer to rate that offer, and even bumping the pick value by 20%, the Swift side still came out ahead by a wide margin. Based on that valuation I can see someone stating that the 2023 pick hype is out of control. But that’s just one league. Using the Dynasty Trade Finder App and setting the filters to 12 teams, superflex or 2QB leagues brings up 200 trades during May involving 2023 first-round picks.

Some of these appear like the manager trading away the 2023 first didn’t value them enough…

While in other trades it seems the manager acquiring the pick overvalued its worth in relation to the player they gave up.

But on a whole, after looking through most of the trades involving the 2023 first-rounders, I have to say their market value doesn’t seem especially out of whack. Again, this refers to the community as a whole. You may play in a league of the sharpest sharps who have been talking about the 2023 class for two seasons now and would rather give up their first born than a 2023 first, but just based on what the trade finder shows I’d say the prices are fair. Remember picks only increase in value over time, and as the 2023 NFL Draft approaches, we could find these picks almost impossible to obtain.

What’s important for you to determine is how these picks are valued in your individual league/s, and then adjust accordingly. In the league where I attempted to trade Swift for nearly any 2023 first I could, yes those are picks are overvalued. If I were a contender in that league I would look to trade my 2023 first for a player in Swift’s general tier, preferably a wide receiver. And that would be my advice in your leagues. If the picks are overvalued and you know you have one of the stronger teams then go shopping with that pick, if you are less likely to be a contender next year then hold. Obviously, there is a ton of time before the start of the season, so don’t feel pressured to make a decision today.

Patience is most certainly a virtue, but sometimes it’s okay to speed up the rebuild process. With 15 (!) first-round draft picks over the next two seasons, including seven in the hyped 2023 class, I would look to package some of these picks to get an elite quarterback. While you could wait until 2023 and hope that you land CJ Stroud, Bryce Young, Tyler Van Dyke, etc, there’s no guarantee that any of the quarterbacks will be elite (please refer to Trevor Lawrence).

Look for any rebuilding rosters in your league and then flood them with picks for their best quarterback. I would have no issue with trading away three of your firsts for any of Josh Allen, Justin Herbert, Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson, or Kyler Murray. I might even go four, yes I said four firsts, in order to get one of those players, though if I did so I would attempt to push so that two of those firsts are from the 2024 class.

The next tier of quarterbacks, Dak Prescott, Joe Burrow, Russell Wilson, or Deshaun Watson would fetch at least two of my first-round rookie picks. Quarterbacks, specifically elite quarterbacks, are the biggest edge in superflex leagues and it’s the one position that you should feel emboldened to “overspend” on.

We’ll assume the question refers to non-premium tight end leagues, since the obvious answer in premium leagues is yes, roster two elite tight ends. In non-premium, though I don’t subscribe to this strategy. What makes a tight end elite, is the positional advantage they give you against other rosters’ middling tight ends. Rostering Mark Andrews last year, the TE1, gave you a 7.8 points per game advantage over the TE12 in fantasy last year. That’s an advantage. But when you compare Andrews scoring to the WR12 last year, Keenan Allen who scored 16.1 points per game, you only see an advantage of just 1.6 points per game for Andrews. As another example, George Kittle finished as the TE4 last year with 14.1 points per game, which would have only been good enough for WR25 last year.

Without the positional advantage, elite tight ends are just kind of ‘guys’, from a scoring aspect. For example, in 2021 the only tight end to score at least 17 fantasy points per game was Mark Andrews, while nine receivers and nine running backs scored 17 points per game or more per game.

It only gets worse as you slide down. I am speaking strictly in terms of scoring. From a value perspective, if you can acquire/draft an elite tight end for the same cost you would a back-end RB2, or WR2 then I’m fine with making that move.

In current DLF mock drafts, Zamir White is going off the board as the RB41, while Alexander Mattison is going off the board as the RB51, White being drafted two and a half rounds before Mattison. White was a five-star recruit to Georgia who suffered two torn ACLs, one as a high school senior and another as a college freshman. For mere mortals that would end their careers but for the Zeus god, it’s safe to say after blazing a 4.4-second 40-yards dash at 6’0” 214 lbs, he is fully healed with the last ACL injury being nearly a full four years in the past, and his workload increased every season of his college career.

Statistics from Sports-Reference.

While Josh Jacobs is the starter in Las Vegas, the Raiders did not pick up his fifth-year option, and the current front office has no ties to him, so White should have every opportunity to carve out a significant role in the Raiders offense.

Where White is largely projection, Mattison is a largely known asset. When Dalvin Cook misses time, Mattison has stepped right in and been able to produce as an RB1.

Despite going into his fourth season, Mattison will only be a year older than White at the start of the 2022 NFL season. Mattison is an unrestricted free agent after the 2022 season, but there’s a chance the Vikings decide to move on from a then 27-year-old Cook and save them $8 million in cap space and bring back Mattison in 2023 as a starter.

Considering that Mattison and White are in similar situations, I’m going to lean on the cheaper acquisition cost and the fact I have seen Mattison produce as a fantasy asset, and lean towards Mattison for 2022 and beyond.

I don’t like either option, but I’ll go with a volcanic blast given these choices. I might be cheating a bit here, but I’m going to take a volcanic blast to mean a volcanic eruption, which could refer to the lava flow. On the slow end of the scale, uphill, lava flows can be as slow as 6 miles per hour. I can probably outrun that, at least for a short time.

The DLF Dynasty Fantasy Football Mailbag
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Mark Boutot
3 months ago

I do not understand the White – Mattison mismatch. Compare their college production. Wait, I hear some saying it now: “but Mattison ONLY played in the Mountain West Conference while White was in the SEC”. Then I’ll tell them, look at Mattison’s production (in the NFL) when he had a chance to play. So does conference (and “status” or “lineage”) weigh THAT heavily? I think the Zamir White love over Mattison is symptomatic of the “shiny new thing” syndrome.
In a vacuum, I could see a player vs. player comparison favoring the player from the more notable conference but every case is different and we actually have real, live production from one player.

Jonathan Ingram
3 months ago

Terrible advice to suggest trading 4 1st rounders on a rebuild for Kyler, Lamar, etc. just terrible. Hold on to those picks dude! At least see where they land. You don’t need a QB right now. You can always trade them later. But way, WAY too much for Lamar or Kyler. Mayyyyybe Allen or Herbert. Maybe. But definitely not now!

6gummybearsandsomescotch
3 months ago

So I drafted both Pitts and Friermeuth last year in a single TE non-premium league with the thought of being able to use Pitts as my elite TE but also be able to flex the Meuth since we can flex a TE if I have a bad WR situation. I also have Brevin Jordan. I know it’s not two elite TE’s yet but should I be trading the Meuth if he rolls out hot this season based on not rostering two elite TE’s? Thanks as always! Great stuff!

6gummybearsandsomescotch
Reply to  Shane Manila
3 months ago

Thanks Shane!

Gregory Massa
3 months ago

Shane, while I appreciate your optimism, may I submit this as evidence to the contrary…

https://imgur.com/gallery/VTziroE

6gummybearsandsomescotch
Reply to  Gregory Massa
3 months ago

Ha! Super fast CGI lava flow!

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