As most of you know, I’ve been lucky enough to have been on Comcast New England Cable CN8’s show Sports Pulse for the past few Thursdays talking about fantasy football. It’s been a lot of fun and at some point I’ll put together an article talking about how it’s gone from my perspective. Since it’s been a few shows, I think I’ve settled down…at least to the point where my daughter isn’t talking about my foot shaking like a leaf throughout the entire broadcast!
In any case, since many of you are unable to catch the show for whatever reason, I thought it’d be a good idea to go over some of the stuff that we talked about in last week’s show. In general, we talk about the following:
Guys to Pick up – This is a chance to hilight some of the players from Glenn’s “Waiver Wire” article.
Guys to Start/Bench – This is a chance to hilight some of the players from Ron’s “Start/Bench List” article.
We also discuss the top players at each position based on the weekly projections, as well as talking about where the Patriots players are ranked (after all, it is a New England show).
In addition, this week I brought up some “Midseason Strategies”, which is really the basis of this article here. So without further ado…
Rule One: Look in the Mirror
Get to know your team, its strenghts and weaknesses as well as short and long term needs. Know which players are getting hot, and which players are getting cold. Seven weeks worth of games is certainly a good enough barometer for you to measure your players against. Trends should be established by now and you should be in a position to make decisions on some fringe guys on your roster versus guys on the waiver wire.
Rule Two: Never Wave on the Waiver
Always be looking to upgrade your roster with what is available on the waiver wire. Be active every week, you never know when the hot player of the week will turn out to be the hot player of the season. It always gets me when guys forget to work the waiver, especially those with poor records and high selections. It never fails that one team in my league starts out as the laughing stock, then after four weeks of the top waiver selection, they are a team no one wants to play.
Case in point, look at some of the guys that have emerged from the waiver wire this year: Rueben Droughns, Mewelde Moore, Ben Roethlisberger, etc. Really the list doesn’t need to go much further than Droughns and Moore, those guys are studs right now, and Droughns probably will be for the remainder of the season. Don’t pass up the chance to get these guys if for nothing else than to keep them away from the other teams in your league!
Rule Three: Go for the Great White
Try to trade for players that are the best at their position, your “quantity” for their “quality”. While you always want to make sure you have depth on your roster to protect against injuries and bye weeks, the bottom line is that week in and week out, the eight or nine guys in your starting lineup go against the other guy’s eight or nine guys. The best starting lineup wins so if you can improve your starting lineup, then do so.
Case in point, one of the teams Tony and I share had a major hole at WR1 (thanks to Charles Rogers). Those things happen. On the flip side, we’re fortunate enough to have four viable RBs (Barber, Taylor, Marshall, Thomas Jones). We can only play 2 RBs per week, yet we have to start 3 WRs and we’re picking from Drew Bennett, Keyshawn Johnson, Terry Glenn, Jerry Porter, TJ Houshmandzadeh with Anquan Boldin waiting in the wings. We found a team that had no RB2 and had Chambers and Morgan as starters, along with Terrell Owens. Thomas Jones, Drew Bennett, and Keyshawn Johnson later we welcomed Terrell Owens to our squad. On the surface it may seem like we might have given up too much, but from our starting lineup we only lost Drew Bennett and I don’t think anyone out there will argue that Terrell Owens is an upgrade over Drew Bennett (by the way, we went on to record the highest weekly score of the year this past week thanks to the trade).
Rule Four: Prey on the Weak
Look to the struggling team that might be ready to “shake things up”. Every league has one, and if they don’t, surely you can coax the winless team in the league into “trying something”. Mind you, I’m not talking about fleecing that team and ruining the league. I’m talking about looking at a struggling team and starting a dialogue to see if they have some quality to give for your quantity. You never want to tear a league apart, that is above all these rules.
Rule Five: Swim in a School
Send messages/make calls to every team in the league to see who might be willing to make a trade. As they say, an injured Randy Moss gathers no stones…or something like that. You never know until you try. Send out a group message, say what you have available and you might be surprised at the results.
Another case in point, dynasty league I’m sitting on Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Tim Rattay and Chris Simms. My only viable RB is Willis McGahee and I need to start two. It’s not pretty. I was tired of struggling at RB, so I sent out a league wide message offering up Manning for an stud RB. I got 4-5 very good offers (Brian Westbrook, Corey Dillon, etc), but the one that I couldn’t pass up was Kevan Barlow for Tim Rattay. Bingo. I got a decent RB and I didn’t even have to give up Manning.
Rule Six: Get Tanked
As Ed said on the show, “…this has nothing to do with what you do before/during/after the game.” What I’m talking about here is to check out our sharktank message board for advice on any and everything. This is not news to those of you that are reading this, but there are over 15,000 registered users, most of which are extremely active in asking questions, giving opinions, etc. It never hurts to get as many opinions as possible.
So there they are. Hopefully something to help you out. If you’re a team at or near the bottom right now, it’s not too late – really. There are still bye weeks for teams to struggle thru, there are plenty of trades and waiver moves that can be made. And guys will get hurt so the front runner right now isn’t guaranteed even a playoff spot at this point in the season. If you’re in the middle of the pack, keep working to see if you can get some separation. And those of you fortunate enough to be on top right now, don’t get complacent since every team in the league is gunning for you.