I’m back. More questions, seemingly better answers than before. This week we tackle auction drafts, the 1st Round wide receiver situation, and the “lack” of running backs – and even Brett Favre. It’s late and my knees are acting up, I’ll try my best not to take it out on the question askers. But that doesn’t mean all that BS about no question being a stupid question is true – there are tons of stupid questions – try me next week.
Graham “Big Worm” from Lower Columbia, WA asks, “What is your take on Brett Favre. The guy gets more coverage than an Anna Kournikova sex tape, which quite honestly chaps my ass, but if he can play he should play, right?” From a fantasy perspective should I dump Trent Edwards, my current back-up, and snatch up the old man?
You got it right on the button Big Worm. The way I see it is pretty simple. Brett Favre threw around retirement like he throws underhand backwards pitches to running backs. He wasn’t quite sure, but didn’t want the Packers relying on him being around so he called it quits, thinking that if he wanted to come back they would obviously welcome him with open arms. The trick was on him. The Packers decided to go with Aaron Rodgers (good move, because the youngster is legit) and did all they could to convince Favre to stay retired, even going as far as offering him money to do nothing. I’m not positive, but I bet that pissed Ol’ Brett off something fierce and it probably made him want to play even more. But the Packers didn’t want to face Brett, and trading him within their own division to help an opponent out made absolutely no sense to them. But Brett’s a competitor, so surely, right off the bat, he wanted to play against his former team and jam it right up their backside. Since he couldn’t, he toughed out a year in Jet-land, gave it all he had, ups and downs, just missed the playoffs, and thus retired again. Giving him exactly what he wanted, the Jets released his rights. That gave Favre the freedom to play wherever he wanted. Brett’s not the first guy to run right back to his old division and sign up with a rival. When let go, lots of guys take it personally, and some have even been known to give up some money for a couple chances a year at their old team. I think that’s freaking awesome. So now he’s in Minnesota and he’s going to give it his all to try and make the Vikings a championship level team. Will he? I’m not sure either way, but I’ll be watching, that’s for damn sure. Now a bunch of people are pissed that he retired and came back and retired and came back, but those people are stupid. Some people think it’s terrible that he went to the Packers’ rival. But it’s that same competitive spirit that made him as great a player as he is. So those people aren’t thinking past go either. Basically, I like it. If he wants to play, can play, and can get someone to pay him to do so, by all means, play until your shriveled up my man!!! As for all the coverage. Blah. I’m sick of it, and my TV is out. I can only imagine how you feel. Fantasy-wise, of course he’s going to have some value. That team is pretty stacked. Peterson is obviously a beast. Berrian has elite speed and Brett can get him the ball. Percy Harvin is dynamite. Even Shiancoe is a solid TE. That line will keep Brett standing. So all things look good except all those rushing attempts should keep him from big yardage. But he’ll still a decent back-up. However, I’d stick with Edwards. I know you don’t have much time, but Edwards is in that new hurry up, with lots of passing, two very good receivers, and some running backs that are solid catching out of the back-field. He’s very accurate, and you never know, this could be a big breakout year for him. But it’s close to a wash, so if you’re feeling one way, go with your gut. I have to listen to my gut, the thing is enormous.
Paul the Perv writes, “I’m in an auction draft and I was wondering if there’s any plan of attack that you try in these kind of drafts? I’m brand new to them and I’m not sure if nominating a guy gives me a better or worse chance in getting him on my team. Any ideas?”
Why are all Paul’s pervs? Hopefully your last name is Pervis or something like that, or maybe you’re just cleverly named as a common man. Regardless, I have answers to your dilemma. I’ve found all auction drafts to be a little different, and have become a big fan of them over the last few years. What I’ve found works best is nominating high-hype guys early in the draft. Guys that you think are a little overrated and currently getting loved on by the public. Now usually what this will do is get your league-mates to overpay for these overvalued players, leaving you with good money to get good value. That’s always my goal. Now sometimes I do this and as it turns out, everyone believes me that a guy is overrated and I end up bidding on the guy because his new value is much better. I almost never cross a guy off my list, everyone has value, but my goal is to make people overpay so I can underpay. Guys like Chris Johnson, Matt Forte, Drew Brees, and Larry Fitzgerald are all guys I’d love to have, but they are all getting overvalued. (Even my nephew ranks Forte #2, which I think is too high) So if it was up to me, I’d call their names early if I got the chance, and see if I can’t get people overpaying for services. Hope that helps Perv!
Too Tall Tom from Onalaska asks, “I know you’re a big running back guy in the first couple rounds, but every year is different, is it okay for me to go WR in the first couple rounds this year?”
Sure man, in fact, I think going WR as early as 6th overall isn’t too ridiculous this season. Once you get out of that top tier of running backs, there’s a lot of equality there. And while I don’t buy this whole “the receiver cupboard is bare” BS that seems to be milling around draft rooms, I do think that there is a quick drop-off from elite to good to worth a shot. There are seemingly hundreds of receivers worth a shot. There’s a lot of guys I’d consider good options. But there’s very few ELITE #1s out there. Not enough for everyone to have a couple, that’s for sure. With RBs, there’s a lot of guys that I would be fine starting, and I’m talking about guys you can get in rounds 3-8. So, I’ve had some drafts in which I went WR early, the earliest being the 6th. I had Steve Slaton as my next best RB available, but he wasn’t too far ahead of a lot of the solid backs left, so I went with Larry Fitz and his elite consistency and overall numbers. On the way back (it was a 10 team league, which are the ideal type of leagues to go WR early) I still got Steve Slaton. With my 3rd pick I grabbed Steve Smith, and with my 4th pick I went with Kevin Smith, another guy we like here within the fantasy staff. So I got two number 1 receivers, and two young running backs that had solid years and possess lots of upside. If I went RB with my first two picks, I wouldn’t be much better in my backfield, but I would be worse at WR. That’s the kind of thing you have to think about during the draft, where’s the value? Sure, I went WR a lot earlier than usual. But I got the guy I think is the best player at that position – at a position with fewer elite players. So yes, in short, sometimes it’s good to be different.
Noah, from “just outside the ark” thinks out loud, “All the things I read are saying that WR is shallow this year and RBs are deep, do you actually believe this?”
No, and yes. I don’t believe that either position is actually shallow, but in a way, both are kind of shallow in the “elite” category. In years’ past there are lots of guys getting 80% of their team’s carries, at least. This year, there are fewer of those type running backs. Fewer proven carry-horses. So that makes getting one of those main guys a bonus, if you can. At WR you have the same type of thing, lots of guys with lots of upside, but not so many guys that can get drafted without at lest a little question mark by their production. Now nothing is guaranteed. Vince Young could get pouty in Week 1, feel bad that people are booing him, and never start another game the rest of the year. But those crazy things being written off as just crazy, I think you can find great options all over the draft at any of these positions. Would I rather have Roddy White, Larry Fitz, and Andre Johnson than Dominik Hixon, Anthony Gonzalez, and Nate Burelson? You bet. But should all 6 guys be owned? Definitely. Could all 6 be starter worthy during the year? You bet. I actually think, that with all the “sharing is caring” going around the NFL, having specialty players do certain things, carry in certain situations, and having 3 and 4 WRs, this is actually one of the “deepest” seasons in fantasy football that I’ve ever researched and took part in. There are so many players at all the positions, even TE has a grip of valuable guys. I got Tim Hightower and Julius Jones as 4th and 5th running backs, in rounds 11 and 12, for a league I’m in. That’s two starters. Hightower is young and scores touchdowns, and even though Beanie Wells is there, he’s still starting. And Julius Jones is in a scheme that should use his running ability well, and he’s done well when getting 20 carries a game. So while they are not starters in terms of top fantasy backs, they are still two actual NFL starters that could produce for me this season. Don’t believe the hype, shallow and deep are very arbitrary, especially this year.