Gloom, despair and agony on me.
Deep dark depression, excessive misery.
If it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all.
Gloom, despair and agony on me. – Roy Clark and Buck Owens
Feeling down because Jamaal Charles is done for the year? Losing Jon Beason or Thomas Davis destroy your linebacker corps? Draft Peyton Manning this year? So you are 0-2 after two weeks. So what? Time to panic? I think not.
But you should have started after week one.
Panic causes rash decisions. Rash decisions cost wins. Do not sacrifice the talent you have left to get a couple mediocre players.
Every year, players come out of nowhere to become fantasy stars. Hopefully, you built strength into one position so you can seek trades from a position of power.
If you drafted Manning, then you had a hint that there might be a problem when the Colts signed Kerry Collins. If so, you probably have a decent backup. If not, most leagues still have some QBs that might be serviceable or even potentially better than serviceable. Guys like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Cam Newton and Rex Grossman were probably available after week one.
Guys like Jason Campbell, Alex Smith and Andy Dalton are probably available now. And before you start laughing – check the rankings in your league. In one of mine Dalton has out-scored Josh Freeman, Matt Schaub, Ben Roethlisberger and Eli Manning – despite missing half of his first game.
Running backs are always tougher to replace. But because of that, you should have had at least three starting caliber backs on your roster. If not, your best bet is to look for backups to starters that might be replaced due to injury or poor performance or backs that have a partial role right now.
Wide receiver is always a position that allows for stars after the season starts. This year, David Nelson, Nate Washington, Danario Alexander, Brandon LaFell and Denarius Moore have all had surprising games and most of them will find a spot on someone’s roster before week 3 kicks off.
Even tight ends can be your friend. Fred Davis, Scott Chandler, Jeff King, Ed Dickson and Evan Moore are still available in most leagues and Davis is in the top 5 at his position. Chandler, King and Dickson are in the top 10.
But most of you are still waiting on Jermichael Finley, Greg Olsen, Antonio Gates or Vernon Davis to kick it in gear. While I would not cut any of the aforementioned “stud” tight ends, I would certainly pick up a backup that is hot. And traditionally I don’t recommend carrying two tight ends. But when a free agent (Fred Davis) is outscoring studs (Gates and Vernon Davis) by 10 – 13 points per game, well it is time to erase that scoring deficit.
People often grab a kicker and never think again. That is why Nick Folk, John Kasay and Jason Hanson are free agents in so many leagues and Matt Bryant, Ryan Longwell and Matt Prater are on rosters. Swap out Bryant for Kasay and you just picked up an extra TD (6 points) per game.
So many novice fantasy ballers get frustrated with a 0-2 record. When it gives them a much better shot at the emerging free agents and a chance to improve your team.
Everyone has good and bad years. Most “experts” are in multiple leagues – I was in 18 last year and 19 this year (not counting my four draftmaster leagues). I started slowly both years (4-15 after week one this year), but all that does is ensure I hit the waiver wire hard. A 12-7 week two hasn’t salvaged all my seasons but in 18 leagues last year with a slow start, I made the playoffs in 12 leagues, the championship game in six and won three championships – including the prestigious FanEx title.
I did it by not panicking and managing my teams every week. You can too. If you are visiting Pro Football Weekly, you already have a leg up on most of your league mates. If you find 3-4 sites that you trust to get information from, so much the better.
But the real key is to maintain control of your team(s). You know your leagues better than any “expert” so don’t just take their advice. Get their analysis, stir it in with yours and make your own decisions. And the more opinions you get – the better informed your decisions will be.
Greg Kellogg is a member of the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Hall of Fame and hosts a bi-weekly radio-styled podcast at http://blogtalkradio.com/Fantasy-Sharks. He is affiliated with Fantasy Sharks, the top fantasy site that is free all the time for all things the fanatic might need. Stop by and say hello!