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The Classiest Dynasty League Case Study Part 2: The First Rookie Draft

Have you botched a start-up draft or have a team in the dumps? You need to check out this case study over how @Jsnake_DFF turned a dumpster fire team to a 3rd place team in one year. Here’s part 2: The First Rookie Draft

Introduction

In the second part of my Superflex dynasty case study, I will discuss the trades and draft picks I made in the 2020 rookie draft. If you want to read part one about the start-up draft, click here.

After the start-up, the only rookie pick I had was the 2.11 in a 14-team league, and I knew I needed to acquire more rookie picks because I botched the start-up draft. I completed two trades (one before and one after the start-up draft) to end up with one first-round pick in the rookie draft, but it was a critical one.

Superflex Dynasty Regular Season: March-August 2021

Traded Michael Thomas & 2020 2.11 FOR Kenny Golladay, 2020 1.09, & 2020 1.10

This trade ended up turning my whole team around quickly. Getting two first-round picks and an up-and-coming player in Kenny G for MT was a SLAM DUNK! I could not be happier.

Traded Kerryon Johnson & 1.09 FOR Boston Scott & 1.07

This trade HURT initially because I moved Kerryon, who I drafted in the sixth round for nothing, but this trade ended up giving me Justin Herbert!!! Herbert led to my team’s value increasing exponentially, and when I drafted him, I was very nervous.

THE DRAFT

1.07 – Justin Herbert, QB LAC

Courtesy of AP Photo/Kyusung Gong

Herbert turned into a slam dunk draft pick at 1.07. I did not think he would explode in value as he has, but my fantasy teams are extremely happy! At 1.07, he was the easy pick. I also knew I needed a potential QB that could be solid for years to come with only having Sam Darnold, Brisset, and Trubisky.

Traded 2020 1.10 for Eric Ebron and David Montgomery

Courtesy of ProFootballNetwork.com

I do not know how to feel about this one. Montgomery was used in trades down the road, but I feel like the 1.10 would have ended up being the better piece. I could have drafted Justin Jefferson or Tee Higgins, but I could have ended up with Jeudy or Reagor. So long story short, I am going to call it even.

THOUGHTS ON DRAFTING ROOKIE PICKS IN START-UPS (or rookie players)

Fantasy Football Dynasty/Keeper rankings
Courtesy of Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

In part one, I talked a little bit about how I should have drafted the rookie picks instead of players MULTIPLE times, but I did not get into why. Here are three reasons why rookie picks/ rookie players are good to be aggressive with:

1- Rookies (first-round quality) have an average ADP rise of 23% from the draft to the end of the first season. You should still evaluate where you think rookie picks/ players should be picked versus known players. Do not be scared to take the plunge and pick rookie picks early and often.

Note: I am working on a project looking at rookie picks and ADP, and more info will come in the next month.

2- If you can draft rookie picks in a start-up, their value will only increase going closer and closer to the rookie draft. AND you can move them for known players if you want.

3- I already mentioned how rookies increase their value by 23% during their first year. This does not look at how much upside can come from drafting rookies. For example, Justin Jefferson was drafted in the fifth round in one league I was in, and now he is a first-round start-up pick. The counterpoint to this argument is Keshawn Vaughn, who was drafted in the sixth round and is now worth nothing. The key is evaluating players and pushing hard for those with safer upside while not going after players with risky profiles (like Vaughn).

The best way to think about rookie picks is investment stocks, not lottery tickets. In general, the value maintains and goes slightly up, but some can go way down, and others can go way up. Known players are like cash in a savings account with very little wiggle room and, in general, do not stay with inflation (aka loss of value with age).

START-UP TO ROOKIE DRAFT TEAM CHANGES

I like how my team changed going into the 2020 season. I had an upgrade at QB and RB, while my other positions stayed about the same! My team is on the right path, but I have a lot of work to do!

FINAL THOUGHTS

  1. Even after the start-up draft, ALWAYS be looking to make moves that help your team even if it means you must swallow your pride and realize you made a bad start-up pick.
  2. Be aggressive in trading up in rookie drafts especially if you see a tier drop about to happen. My example was trading up for Herbert.
  3. Remember that rookie picks/ players are an investment account that will most likely maintain value, but others will increase or decrease exponentially. My best teams were built by having a lot of rookie picks and going best player available.

In part three, I will discuss the trades and waiver adds I made in the 2020 season. Also, I will talk about how I picked Logan Thomas as my top waiver claim going into the 2020 season.  

Make sure you subscribe to the #NerdHerd, where you get exclusive content, dynasty/rookie/devy rankings, buy/sell tool, and a bonus podcast too. Dynasty Nerds also recently launched the #DynastyGM tool, which is a complete game-changer in the fantasy industry. Click here for a free trial. We truly are your one-stop-shop for all your fantasy football needs!

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