Fantasy Football: Ten Dynasty Tips & Tricks
For those that are new to the concept of dynasty, welcome. Redraft leagues are by far the most common structure to participate in when it comes to fantasy football, but dynasty formats continue to grow in popularity. As an avid player and host of “The Dynasty Dude” podcast, I have been exposed to the format for quite some time and personally find it to be the most entertaining option available. Below, I will share some of the strategies that I have implemented or learned from regarding dynasty in hopes that they help you succeed in your leagues in 2018 and beyond.
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1. Monitor League Member Activity
Depending on what website a dynasty league is hosted on, league member activity can be monitored at virtually all times. For example, on MyFantasyLeague a setting can be enabled which shows the last time a user visited a league’s homepage. More often than not, this can lead to trade negotiations if more than one person is logged in at one time. If an individual signed on within the past 24 hours, it is also that much easier to communicate with them in order to see what brought them to the website in the first place.
Another feature to utilize if available are email notifications after every transaction takes place in a league. Once again, MyFantasyLeague offers this to all users. By monitoring league activity, an owner can gain a competitive advantage over others by simply paying attention and identifying areas of opportunity or interest from fellow league members.
2. Communicate, Then Trade
Instead of sending a random trade offer out to an owner in hopes that it is accepted, be sure to initiate a conversation beforehand. In doing so, team needs can be addressed on both ends and eliminate a lot of back and forth in terms of unreasonable offers.
There’s nothing worse than receiving a lopsided trade offer, as it cuts off communication before it even begins. Creating a dialogue builds relationships, which in turn makes trading on a routine basis that much easier with other league members.
3. Regularly Update Trade Bait
More often than not, trades are constructed after a team updates trade bait for a roster. This promotes league activity, while simultaneously alerting fellow owners who are actually available to deal at a given time. Even more, it usually translates to fewer low-quality offers since only a select number of players are listed on the trade block as opposed to an entire roster.
4. Routinely Check Waivers
Albeit rather obvious, those who routinely check waivers in dynasty are often more successful. The key is to do so both during the regular season and offseason, as hidden gems can be claimed at any point of the NFL calendar year. For competitive dynasty owners who are constantly looking for ways to improve a roster, there truly is no offseason. For example, consider an owner drops a player set to become a free agent in real life towards the end of the fantasy playoffs in order to stream a position with a favorable matchup. While most people are eliminated from championship contention at this point and are likely tuned out, a savvy owner will capitalize on the opportunity and stash the player that was dropped in hopes that the individual lands in a favorable spot during free agency. It’s not discussed enough, but waiver wire acquisitions can win leagues.
5. Create A League Communication Channel
Whether it be on a league’s hosting website or social media, it is imperative to create a league communication channel for a dynasty league. Without one, a lot of information can be lost in translation. This is especially true for a commissioner, as it can be rather difficult to keep track of league commentary and requests if the dialogue is coming from people individually as opposed to one main group chat.
6. Trade for Injured Players
Unlike in season-long leagues, trading for injured players is a recommended strategy in dynasty formats. With a long-term outlook in mind, investing in someone via trade who is forced to miss time can be advantageous from a pricing standpoint. After a player suffers a serious injury, a significant portion of fantasy owners become frustrated and seek immediate alternatives. This is fairly common if an injured reserve designation is not an option in a league, as it then forces a dynasty general manager to waste a roster spot on an inactive player.
7. Stockpile Rookie Draft Picks
Regardless of depth on a roster, it is crucial to stockpile rookie draft picks in dynasty structures. Due to unforeseen problems that can arise in fantasy football like injuries or a lack of production, a roster is never too deep. In other words, do not be afraid to collect rookie draft picks even if they are projected to be a later selection. All picks matter as they can turn into premier talent or traded for a proven asset, plain and simple.
8. Remember, Age is Just a Number
Time and time again age is overvalued in the dynasty realm. Remember, age is simply a number that does not necessarily define a player’s output in the NFL. As a rule of thumb, WRs tend to offer long shelf lives than RBs in terms of career paths. As a result, experienced dynasty owners usually assemble a roster around a young core of receivers. The same logic does not have to apply to the remaining pieces of a team, as a blend of veteran and ascending talent typically result in annual success. Those who build a team for the future often find it difficult to compete if prospects fail to pan out.
9. Don’t Build a Roster from ADP
One of the most common mistakes made by dynasty owners is building a roster from an ADP list. This philosophy is based on utilizing data from mock drafts that have no monetary or individual rewards at stake. In other words, people participating in exercises intended for ADP could draft differently than in an actual league to test various methods of roster construction. Hence, it is best to use personal or professional rankings and merely reference ADP in an actual startup draft.
10. Zig When Others Zag
This logic applies to all facets of fantasy football. In order to separate a roster from others, a contrarian strategy is often required. This could consist of fading a skill position like RB or WR in the beginning stages of a draft or even trading a player after a career-season for an unproven but enticing prospect. There is no mathematical formula for success in dynasty leagues, so following a blueprint is far from foolproof. Notice trends of groupthink in a league, and make adjustments where necessary in order to differentiate a roster from others in hopes to win a championship.