Playing Redraft as a Dynasty Owner

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Playing Redraft as a Dynasty Owner

Today marks the 6th year since I made the leap from redraft into the dynasty fantasy football universe. That was one of the best decisions I ever made, as it enriched my fantasy life by 50-fold. Because of dynasty football, I am now this fantasy footballer machine that absorbs any type of information. This is truly a fascinating world!  I enjoyed and continue to thrive and grow in it.

But…the story doesn’t end here. I have not completely abandoned the world of re-draft. After spending so much time settling in the dynasty world, I often ventured back to re-drafts, just so I can beat up on my local buddies…or at least that is what I thought I would be doing. An area that is not often talked about (or at least to the extent of my knowledge) is the disconnection from the re-draft world once one has migrated to the dynasty one. Many expressed disappointment when they did go back to re-draft world for a visit. The re-draft world just doesn’t seem as much fun anymore. Where are the bold strategies to shape your team? Where is the satisfaction of identifying rookie sleepers? Why is the season only 16 games and then the happiness fade away; beginning another trudging 8-9 months until you slowly get back into football? THAT’S LESS THAN HALF A YEAR OF FOOTBALL

When I went back to the re-draft world, I was overconfident, over prepared and over analyzing just about everything. Even my personal tiering board was laden with young hopefuls and potentials. So, for the past years, I had inconsistent results; some years I was in the playoffs, followed by a year in the cellar. It was maddening, and I couldn’t figure out why at first. That is why many ex-citizen of the re-draft world decided to apply for full-time dynasty citizenship…never looking back ever again.

Is this Home?

When I wrote for SundaysAreForFootball.com I wrote an intro article where hammered on the point that it takes a whole new perspective and outlook about football players to thrive in the dynasty realm. Who knew that it would need a mental re-adjustment to get back into the re-draft world. But this is actually very natural. If you were an immigrant, you may understand this phenomenon of acculturation. Spending so much time in a different context, society, environment, one would begin to lose a little bit of the former identity and competence. For example, your language competency from your country of origin would be slightly less proficient compared to the time you were still living there. Fortunately, just by spending a little bit of time back in your original place, you can gain a spontaneous remembering. However, it would definitely still need some practice. So, perhaps you will need your own version of a pre-season to shift your mind from dynasty back to re-draft. Here are some following tips to help you not only readjust back to re-draft world, but perhaps even taking some newly learned Dynasty Experience with you.

NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at New Orleans Saints

Mock Drafts (Your Pre-season)

Start participating in standard mock drafts. Whether it’s ESPN, CBS, or draft calculator, it doesn’t matter. What helped me to get readjusted is to play in at least 2-3 mocks/week leading up to the month of August. This is where your pre-season begins. Learn to be comfortable taking the old guy again or understanding the proper value of rookies/high-potential guys. It is very tempting to take Allen Robinson or Tevin Coleman with a 4th round pick (assuming 12 team standard league; PPR) in a draft, but these are high-potential players that may be served better as depth rather than spending a starter capital on them. While you don’t necessarily have to follow the draft ranking given to you, you do have to understand why they some of these older low ceiling guys are ranked “in your opinion” so high! Mainly because, high/mid floor guys give you more bang for your buck. So, before you write off Chris Ivory in favor of the next hot guy, ala Kenneth Dixon, remember you’re not in Dynasty anymore.

Keep a separate list of Dynasty Talents (Roster trim down to your “Final 53″)

Even though I hammered on the point on skipping the high ceiling guy in favor of the seasoned vet, you still need to have a short waiver/watch list in handy. It’s easy to forget who the high potential guys are once you’re in-season. Redraft leagues often mean short roster (avg. 15-16 man roster – Kicker – DST = 13 roster spots w/ 5 bench players), and that means a lot of talent will be on the waiver wire. Having this short-list is what helped me scooped up Jordan Matthews and Odell Beckham Jr from the waiver wire during their years. People forget these talented players when they have a cold start to the season. Don’t waste those bench spots on long shots or depth chart guys early in the season. Stashing high potential players early in the season will make it emotionally difficult for you to cut that player, because you’ll have the “what if this is the week he takes over” mentality. Don’t be that guy. For example, I stashed Christine Michael for 6+ weeks, because each week is the potential for Marshawn Lynch to get hurt or miss time (and even when he did, it was Robert Turbin who took over).

allen hurns

via FanSided.com

Trade to your advantage

One of the strategies as an avid dynasty owner is the knowledge of deep roster. In standard size rosters, I often see a deep FA pool, whereas my redraft counter parts always complain that there is nothing on the waiver wire (all the while as they were writing off Allen Hurns as a fluke). As a dynasty owner you also have the eyes to see trends, understand flukes, and have deeper knowledge beyond players (i.e., schemes, coaching history, etc.). In a re-draft mindset, it is almost unthinkable to trade Jamaal Charles for anything less than Eddie Lacy + AJG early in 2014. So, I went ahead and sold JC for Jeremy Hill and DeAndre Hopkins. The snickering or uproar will be gone once you’ve proven your mettle. Conversely, having too much of a dynasty mindset can sometimes inhibit you from making sensible trades. For example, I made a strong push last year by trading Amari Cooper and TJ Yeldon to get Adriel-Jeremiah Green for a championship run (got eliminated 1st round btw, but that trade helped me solidify my playoff spot by week 10; so you get the point).

I will leave you here with these short strategies. Perhaps you can think of more and be creative. The last thing to remember is to maximize your fun for THIS season, when you’re playing re-drafts. There really aren’t any long-term consequences to worry about when playing re-draft, so why not have fun and experiment?

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