Fantasy Football: Preparing for a dynasty league startup draft


Training camp is only a couple of weeks away. That means it is time to begin getting ready for fantasy football drafts. This year, I’ve been invited to join a type of fantasy league I’ve never played in before, so preparing will take extra effort.

Traditional fantasy leagues, known in the fantasy community as redraft leagues, have you drat a completely new team every year. Dynasty leagues are the opposite of that. Most players are kept from year to year, which adds a long-term-outlook aspect to the strategy.

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Veteran quarterbacks like Peyton Manning and Drew Brees are going to be more valuable in 2015 than youngsters like Teddy Bridgewater or Marcus Mariota. The problem with drafting the vets is that next year I may have to trade away valuable assets in order to acquire a new quarterback.

At the same time, prioritizing youth could hurt my ability to compete this year. A team centered around Bridgewater and Todd Gurley isn’t likely to be able to compete against a team centered around Tom Brady and Mashawn Lynch. The goal is to compete every year; not just in 2015, and not just in the distant future.

One mistake I’ve seen people making when discussion dynasty on twitter is investing too much capital in “breakout candidates.” These players can make help make a dynasty team successful for years, but missing on them can cause major issues in the short term as well.

Seattle’s Christine Michael was a popular player to invest in a year ago. That clearly didn’t work out. Miami’s Lamar Miller was the guy two years ago. While that investment still has potential to provide dividends, but it hasn’t exactly been worthwhile so far.

I’ve also seen people selling too low (at least in my opinion) on aging vets. It might be nice to get something in return for Peyton Manning before he retires, but that ham sandwich isn’t likely to help you win in the long term either. Finding proper value seems to the true challenge in dynasty.

The end result of all of this is a fantasy football strategy that is very intriguing. I’ve put a lot of thought into my strategy, but I’m not sure how the other team owners will value players during the startup draft.

What I’ve decided to do is to try and stock my team this season with a nice mix of old, prime, and young players. i’m also going to avoid the older players that I think will be overvalued.

Veteran Players to avoid: Calvin Johnson, Adrian Peterson, Marshawn Lynch, Drew Brees

Veteran Players to target: Tony Romo, Matt Ryan, Phillip Rivers

Prime player to avoid: Julio Jones, DeMarco Murray

Prime players to target: Alfred Morris, Golden Tate, Russell Wilson

All young players are worth targeting in dynasty if the price is right. Looking at various sites around the web that that only about fantasy football, I’m guessing that I’ll value rookies lower than most.

Overall, I expect this to be an interesting experience, even if I am going into it rather blind. If any Dynasty veterans have any advice, or see any mistakes I’ve made in my assumptions, please leave leave it below in the comments. I’m curious to hear what all of you have to add.

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