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Keeper League: The run for the championship falls short

This is a look back at my keeper money league 2006 season and an assessment of what I will do different in 2007.



I started playing in this league in 2003. The league has been around since 1999 and it expanded from 12 to 16 teams to add me and a few other people. The league is run by a co-worker who knows his sports and runs a good league.


The league is a 2 player keeper league that allows you to keep 2 players for one year. Staring line up is 1QB, 2 RB, 3WR, 1Flex (RB,WR, TE) 1K, 1DST. TE is not required to start but must be on the roster and used like WR’s. Scoring is performance based. 14 game season. Top 4 in the division make the playoffs, the rest are in the toilet bowl.



Having been in the league long enough to get a good feel for how to plan for it. I spent the summer formulating ADP, doing mocks, using drafting software and reading all I could to get an edge.


Draft day strategy was simple. I had kept M. Harrison & C. Dillon from the year before. I would add backs & receivers early, wait until 10 or so QB’s were off the board until I took one. Grab a defense late and only grab one kicker. (I always play a kicker on his bye to avoid having 2 kickers, so far I’m 4-0 in those games)



I thought I was so prepared that I showed up 30 min early and had the confidence that I was going to dominate the draft. I had planed out the whole 1st round and figured that Chester Taylor would be on the board when I picked at #13.


Here is how the draft went:


ROUND 1: My pick came, low and behold my man

Chester was waiting for me to greet him with open arms.


ROUND 2: Some QB’s came off the board a lot sooner then anyone thought. My division foe took Eli so when pick 2 came around I grabbed Plaxico before the Eli owner picked again. My thinking was Plax as my WR2 is a good weapon to have against that team since we play twice.


ROUND 3: Since we have a flex position I wanted to start 3 backs and picked up. D. Williams thinking D. Foster would get hurt and Williams would put up big numbers. Early Predictions was that the Panther running game would lead that team to the Super Bowl.


ROUND 4: At this point the QB’s are now 7 off the board with M. Bulger looking to land in my lap. But as it happened, he gets snatched up two picks before me by the LT owner. Not deviating from my plan I took T. Green who had one of the best SOS for the 1st 5 games and I thought I would get a jump on the competition.


ROUND 5: Took E. Kennison. With T. Green as my QB and Kennison as my WR3 I would score big!


ROUND 6 & LATER: I added depth to my squad. Taking Davenport & A. Peterson as Tony said to take a back from these teams. I added Deion Branch, My other division foe had Hasselbeck so I could start him twice when we played. Took a flyer on some other players. D. Carr as my back-up, grabbed

Miami D and K O.Mare.




The season and I started out the blocks hot, 3-0. Then

Trent went down game one and with D. Carr as my back-up I took A. Smith off waivers. I struggled through mid-season with a 3-5 record after dropping 5 straight and decided to wheel and deal to make a playoff run.


1st I targeted C. Portis. The owner was struggling also and weak at WR & RB. I offered him Reggie Williams (Tied for league lead in TD’s & the owner had Leftwich), C. Dillon & M. Smith.


2nd I targeted D. McNabb. I traded P. Burress, D. Carr & Bangles D.

I now had a line up of

D. McNabb, C. Portis, C. Taylor, A. Thomas, M. Harrison. D. Branch. E. Kennison. J. Carney & Miami D.


Result: Portis went into the bye and then got hurt the next week. McNabb tore his ACL and I thought I was toast.


3rd trade: Gave up M. Harrison for A. Johnson & J. Lewis. I was desperate to make the playoffs and needed something.


Result: I ended the season on a 5-1 run (8-6) and then was bounced in the 1st round by the team who won the championship. (Note: Champion went undefeated as he kept S. Jackson & F. Gore and gave up multiple picks to get LT overall #1. He also drafted M. Bulger & M. Colston.)




What I thought was going to be a dream season was hampered by injuries & running out of steam in the playoffs. I learned a few things that will help me in 2007.


1) I’m keeping McNabb & A. Johnson (I’m getting bad vibes from Portis plus I can grab him again in the draft if needed). I’m now set up to concentrate on building depth at the skill position.


2) I will always from here on out keep 3 QB’s. I will pick a defense earlier.


3) I traded down in the 1st and up in the 5th giving me 2 extra picks in the beginning of the draft. The studs have all been kept so I will build with good talent. having two 2nd round, two 3rd round, a 4th and two 5th round picks to build a solid starting group and grabbing a top back up QB in the process. (It’s making a division foe nervous that he may pull a stupid trade that will hurt him rather then help him.)


4) I will hold off on the next best thing. I took D. Williams way to early last year and it didn’t work out. I’m sure people will be looking at M. Lynch, A. Peterson & C. Johnson early but I’m going to focus on the best players available.


5) Build for the future. I will also try to target players I can keep for next year. If not in the draft then by trade. One year I got stuck keeping very average players because I didn’t plan ahead. A keeper league is in-between a redraft & a dynasty. You have to prepare using both strategies.

6) Luck is a funny thing when it comes to Fantasy Football. Last year I had both sides of it. Some bad injuries but still getting in the playoffs. I just didn’t have enough Luck when it came to wining it all.


This is my year! (again)

Good luck to everyone in their upcoming season.

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