Dynasty Fantasy Football Trading Post: Late First Round Picks

Russ Fisher

When this article drops we will be exactly one week from the start of the 2024 NFL draft. If you are anything like me then that means you will have some rookie drafts starting in about ten days. If you are anything else like me that means you might have some rookie picks burning a hole in your metaphorical dynasty pocket. Even if you are a rebuilding team, using rookie draft picks as trading chips is a very effective way to raise the value and quality of your dynasty team. The closer you get to your rookie draft those draft picks go up in value and they keep going up until your pick is on the clock.

This is a very fun year because the level and depth of talent of incoming rookies is higher than we have seen in the past few years. Of course when you hear people say “You will be getting first round players in the second round” it’s hyperbole or just over-excitement but there will be some very good players available later in the draft than you are used to. This means that if you are a rebuilding team you will be making good use of those late first round picks in bolstering the talent and value of your roster.

But what if you don’t like using draft picks? What if you just won your league or made a deep playoff run and you don’t want to leave it up to a rookie to improve your squad? The best part about dynasty fantasy football is that you don’t have to make that draft pick, you can trade it! The upside of this draft class being talented and deep is that other managers in your league will want your draft picks.

Let’s take a trip down DLF Trade Finder Way and make a turn onto DLF Trade Analyzer Boulevard to evaluate some real life trades that are going down involving later first round rookie picks:

32 team, 1QB, PPR, start 16 (including IDP)

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I checked out this league site and this league has two conferences with 16 teams each with each conference having their own rookie draft.
The analyzer has this pretty steadily in favor of Stefon Diggs but I am not really sure how much better of a deal you will be able to get for him right now. He has reached the dreaded age of 30, was just traded to a new team, and that team already has two very capable wide receivers on the roster. I still believe that Diggs is very talented and will definitely earn himself a strong target share but he will have much stiffer competition than he did in Buffalo.

Pick 12 in a 1QB rookie draft is definitely outside of the range of comfort with talent and hit rate. You are going to be looking at role player wide receivers, a running back (maybe even the running back one which shows how weak this class really is at RB), or if you are feeling saucy even a quarterback or the tight end two. If you are a rebuilding team I think it is the perfect gamble to take since you want to move Diggs off your roster. If you are a competing team this is a perfect gamble that Diggs can see a resurgence in his new situation.

12 team, 1QB, PPR, start 10

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I have to be honest, I thought the Analyzer would have this much further apart. We talked above about what pick 12 in a 1QB rookie draft can get you and moving one pick up to 11 doesn’t change much. So if you can get a young, super athletic, very talented tight end, who finally will have some competent quarterback play, and just escaped a head coach nightmare, I think you need to do that right away. If you wanted to sell Pitts off of the hype that I just listed I think you would need to pull in much more than this offer. I was really into Darren Waller coming into last season but the injuries and ineptness of the New York Giants offense has pushed me away from thinking Waller will be a dependable asset for my squads. This feels like someone biting very hard into rookie fever. If you have the picks to take advantage of that in your fellow league mates you should start sending offers immediately.

12 team, 1QB, PPR, start 10

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I love this trade from both sides. On one side you have the top tier pick and the later, riskier pick. You would take this side thinking just give me Marvin Harrison Jr or Malik Nabers then I can take a dart throw on a third tier WR or maybe the running back one. On the other side you get two very stable choices. I happen to believe that Xavier Worthy and Adonai Mitchell will be full time fantasy producers so let me trade back from the 1.02 and get two players I can feel safe with instead of one safe and one risk. Of course you can fill in whichever names you want for those picks, I was just using the first players that came to mind in those areas but the point stands. This is one of those nice trades that feels very fair and works out for both because both managers get to draft in a way they feel more comfortable.

Even in draft classes that are labeled as “weak” first round picks will still have value. There is something that glows in our brains when we see that number one at the front of a pick number. When you get lucky and we fall into a deep and strong draft class those late firsts hold a lot more value and are both easy to move and worth taking a shot at drafting. Take a minute and figure out how you feel about this class and how you feel about your roster. Then look around your league and throw out some offers to make moves to get your team in a better position to gain value.

2024 draft coverage 1

russ fisher