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’ve been offered Odell Beckham for Allen Robinson and pick 1.08. I also have picks 1.02 and 1.06. Although I think Robinson will have some touchdown regression, I am wary of giving up the pick for the swap. Is this a trade worth making? – Luke in VA
Allen Robinson was one of the NFL’s breakout stars in 2015, rewarding owners who had faith that his injury-shortened rookie season was a harbinger of things to come. He showed more dynamic than he did in year one, playing well down the field and getting in the end zone so much that he actually led the league in doing so. Expecting regression is fair, but as I believe I highlighted in my exposé on the young stud, his all-around play should keep him insulated from any sort of major drop-off.
With that said, I think I’d make the deal. Odell Beckham is currently rated as the top dynasty asset according to the February ADP, and Robinson checks in at number five overall. The eighth overall rookie is well down the list with an ADP of 70, essentially suggesting you’re paying the equivalent of a late sixth-round startup pick to bridge the gap. You could always ask for a little bit extra on your end (perhaps a mid-to-late second round pick), but all told the value seems fair to me.
- In this 8-man dynasty/empire league I hold the 1.02, 2.02 and 2.03 picks, so I have three of the top 11 players to choose from. Ezekiel Elliott will be taken with the 1.01 pick. I am stacked at receiver, tight end and quarterback,but need the help at running back with only CJ Anderson, Carlos Hyde, Melvin Gordon, Danny Woodhead and Buck Allen. In an 8-man league we need studs to win. With the 1.02 pick do I take Laquon Treadwell, try to trade for a current starter, or reach for a running back like Derrick Henry? I am also not opposed to trading out of the pick for a 2017 first rounder either. – Corey in MN
Though I agree with you that stud win smaller league formats, there’s really never reason to reach for a player in a rookie draft. If you’re really, truly considering Derrick Henry at pick 1.02, I believe it would be more prudent to try and trade back a spot or two, pick up a sweetener along the way, and still get your guy. I agree that you could also trade the pick for a veteran, potentially targeting players like Doug Martin, Lamar Miller or Eddie Lacy, and probably even getting some more back on your end due to the devaluation of the position outside the top couple of guys. All told though, if your trade options dry up, I think you have to go with the best available when your pick is up.
- I traded away my 2016 first rounder for Calvin Johnson during the 2015 playoff push. It paid off and I won my league. However, with Calvin most likely retiring and no first rounder I have Brandon Marshall, Randall Cobb, Nelson Agholor and Devin Funchess for my receivers. At running back I have Mark Ingram, Latavius Murray, Alfred Morris and Rashad Jennings. I also have Rob Gronkowski. Would you try and deal any of these players to bolster another position and/or get into the draft? There are many question marks. – Alex in Canada
Unfortunately, nearly all the players (sans Rob Gronkowski, who I see no reason to sell) you listed are being devalued amongst the dynasty community for one reason or another, be it age, injury, or a poor 2015 campaign. As such, it’s tough to see you getting market value on any of them. However, the one player I’d like to see you try to move is Raiders running back Latavius Murray. While he started off strong, he definitively tailed off down the stretch, and it’s fair to wonder if he’s meant to be a bell-cow at the NFL level. At the very least, recent comments from the Oakland coaching staff are suggestive that they don’t believe that to be the case, hoping that a reduced workload will aid in his efficiency. If you could sell him to snake back into the end of the first round, I think you’ll have done well for yourself.
- I have an offer on the table to give up Le’Veon Bell, plus picks 1.03 and 1.07 this year for Odell Beckham, pick 2.05 and his 2017 first round pick. I feel pretty set at running back, with Todd Gurley, Carlos Hyde, Jeremy Langford, David Johnson, Dion Lewis, Jay Ajayi, and Matt Jones. At receiver I have Kelvin Benjamin, Mike Evans, Randall Cobb, Jordan Matthews, Allen Hurns, Tyler Lockett, and Chris Conley. As you can see, injuries didn’t miss my team this season. Also, Laquon Treadwell or Ezekiel Elliott will likely be available at 1.03, because the guy with the second pick has already announced he is taking Derrick Henry if he is there. Should I take Beckham or work with the draft picks? – Morgan in GA
While it’s true you’re pretty set at running back, and you could use the help at receiver, I think you’re giving away too much. The fact is as the draft comes closer those picks are going to appreciate in value, so I just don’t see the sense in shipping them off now before they hit their apex worth. Since you know either Treadwell or Elliott is going to be available at pick 1.03, I’d instead try to revise the deal by taking it off the table, and adding Jeremy Langford in its place. Much like with Murray above, I’m nowhere near sold Langford is the Bears future starter, and would seek to cash out on his current value. Something like Le’Veon Bell, Langford and pick 1.07 for Beckham and a 2017 first round pick would suit your team a lot better than the current deal.
- How do you see the hiring of Chip Kelly affecting Carlos Hyde’s value? Does this help or hurt his dynasty value in your opinion? Similarly, do you think the addition of OC Ken Whisenhunt bodes well for Melvin Gordon’s sophomore campaign? Which one (Hyde or Gordon) would you rather own for next year? Who would you rather own long-term? – Kyle in SD
I don’t love the fit for Carlos Hyde. While Chip Kelly’s schemes initially worked, and he rode workhorse LeSean McCoy into the ground, I believe much of this was due to McCoy’s transcendent talent and proven pass-catching ability. With McCoy out of town, the Eagles running back workload was split amongst three ball carriers, with none of them truly ever taking over. Perhaps Kelly learned his lesson and will choose to lean on one guy (and actually use him correctly), but that’s not something I want to bank on, even with the ‘Niners backfield currently only stocked with impending free agents. Hyde isn’t “Chip’s guy,” and he’s far from proven at the NFL level – I’m not a fan of the situation.
As for Melvin Gordon, no, he wasn’t good last year, but he kept getting work despite that. His aggregate numbers were certainly deficient, but the positives are he showed flashes in the run game despite a porous offensive line, and he played a lot better in the passing game than many likely expected. I’m honestly not concerned or enthused about the arrival of Ken Whisenhunt, since I expect head coach Mike McCoy to call a lot of the offensive shots, especially since this could be his last year at the helm if things don’t pan out. Giving him the benefit of the doubt as a first-round pick by the current regime, and Gordon is the guy I’d rather have – both for now, and the future.
- I’m in a 12-man, half-PPR league. My keepers are CJ Anderson, Jarvis Landry, Jeremy Maclin, Jordan Matthews, DeVante Parker and Kevin White. We only have to start one running back, but I’m obviously quite thin there, and I’d like to improve that position either prior to our rookie draft or in our rookie draft. I pick at 1.06, 1.08 and 3.08. I know the 3.08 is a flier at best and the talent drop after Ezekiel Elliott and Laquon Treadwell is pretty nasty, so I put together the following deal to guy that has been verbally accepted – Parker, my 1.06 and my 1.08 for Matt Jones and his pick 1.02. Should I go through with this? If I did I’d likely take Treadwell at 1.02 and move him for a startable running back before week three or so, and then just hope that Jones pans out as at least a FLEX option moving forward. What are your thoughts? – Neil in Canada
If this deal is still on the table I want you to take it off, then chop the table up and feed it to a colony of termites. Yes, that was blunt, but in my opinion you’d be making a big mistake by following through here. To me, Miami receiver DeVante Parker would go as pick 1.01 in this year’s draft, meaning I like him quite a bit more than Treadwell, who you’re just looking to flip anyhow. Continuing, while Redskins runner Matt Jones has certainly accrued value in the past year, even if he winds up as the starting ball carrier (no guarantee), there’s no chance in my mind that he’s worth two mid-first round picks. I just don’t see the value, and don’t think Jones is going to appreciably help your ball carrying corps behind CJ Anderson. In the words of Cher, if you could turn back time, it would be in your best interests to put the kibosh on this potential trade.
- I have the 1.02 and 1.03 picks as well as Thomas Rawls, and I am looking to package Rawls with the 1.03 pick to get a top tier receiver. Who do you think I should be targeting with that package? I am hoping to get Ezekiel Elliott with my 1.02 pick, and currently have Alshon Jefferey, Kelvin Benjamin, Kevin White and David Johnson as the main core of my roster. – Paul in NC
I like where your head’s at. The Thomas Rawls hype train is certainly gaining steam, and rightfully so given how well he showed in limited activity as a rookie. But these are the Seattle Seahawks we’re talking about, and they’re never afraid to bring in competition, and subsequently upset the apple cart in the process. While some of these guys are always going to pan out, there remains concern with young, unproven ball carriers who see a spike in value – I’m find with cashing out.
By pairing Rawls with pick 1.03 I think you can essentially pick any receiver outside of the top 8-12 guys, and even that could change depending on your prospective trade partner. Owners appear down on veteran stalwarts such as Dez Bryant, Demaryius Thomas and AJ Green, and I’d consider any of those three as a coup for you in such a deal. If that fails, you could look towards guys like Keenan Allen or Brandin Cooks, who might be obtainable. If you’re looking to gamble, you could seek a guy like Josh Gordon, and probably get another piece back in return. These are the upper-echelon guys I’d seek out, and I don’t see much of a reason to settle for less.
- In year one of a new dynasty startup I finished fifth. Players are given contracts of 1-5 years, contracts decline each off-season, and owners are given waiver dollars to re-sign free agents in declining amounts with the least amount to the winner and the most to the “toilet bowl champ” (last place). Years matter, as players are often lost in free agency after contracts expire.
I’m stacked at running back but weak at receiver, and I’ve taken offers on Bell (four years remaining). Are any of these three offers tempting to you: DeVante Parker (taxi squad, so no years assigned) and a 2017 first rounder likely in the 1.04-1.07 range; the 2016 2.01, and two 2017 first rounders (both 1.05 or later); or Sammy Watkins and a 2017 second rounder (likely 2.02 – 2.06)? – Trevor in Canada
Right off the bat I think you can throw out the second deal – Bell is the bird in the hand, as a stud running back with four years remaining on his contract. The side you’d be receiving is nothing but hopes and dreams, and there’s no way of knowing if you’ll even get the pass catching help you desire. No thanks.
The remaining two deals are relatively fair, but I’d lean towards Bills receiver Sammy Watkins here. He was arguably the most efficient fantasy receiver in 2015, and the only thing standing between him and perennial WR1 status is the trainer’s table. I valuate him relatively similarly to Bell, so getting the future second round pick stands as the cherry on top. The Parker deal is pretty good too, but I just think Watkins is the better player, and better able to help you in an immediate manner, which is important in a contract league.
- I’m in a 12 team, half-point PPR keeper league. We only keep six offensive (non-rookie) players, and we can also keep three rookies. I have picks 1.01 and 1.02 and I am thin at running back with Carlos Hyde being my only keeper, so I’ll be taking Ezekiel Elliott at 1.01. My brother, who is in my league, offered me picks 1.06 and 1.08, plus DeVante Parker for pick 1.02 and Matt Jones. Would you make this trade? – Kyle in Canada
Kyle, I hope you read this article before your brother…
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