Hi, Everybody. My name is Kevin, and I’m a Dynaholic.
Yeah, I know that’s not a word. Since this is my first article for Dynasty Football Factory I have to see what I can get away with, though right? I think way back to this time of year in 2016 when I didn’t have any dynasty teams. It was a much simpler time. I was putting together mock drafts and looking for value plays to target in my redrafts as the summer waned.
Then, I got invited to play in my first Dynasty League, and my entire world changed. Dynasty Leagues are an entirely different animal – where the planning, research and strategizing go on for a whole calendar year.
What do I know??!!!??
I know what you’re all thinking…this guy is in one Dynasty league, and I’m supposed to care about his thoughts on how to build a roster? The answer is yes! Not only did I win the championship in the first year of that particular Dynasty, but I’m also in an excellent position to continue winning over the next 5-years. Not to mention the fact that since that league began, I have joined nine other Dynasty leagues. I’m currently in the midst of three start-up auctions and two dispersal auctions. I also recently completed two dispersal auctions and have inherited two other orphans. So, while you may not want to take my advice this time next year you’ll wish you had.
Clearly, if you’re still reading, I’ve done a good job convincing you that you might glean some level of relevant information from this article. I will go through some of my thought processes for building a Dynasty team soon I promise. The number one thing I need readers to understand is: Every league is different. And when you’re talking Dynasty, it’s not necessarily just the roster size and construction that’s different. Everything from scoring, to roster limits, to bankrolls to drafts can be established differently for every league you’re in. If you do not know and understand the rules of the leagues in which you participate, you will fail. Notice I didn’t say you might fail. I said you would fail.
I have a plan!
Alright, now that we have that out of the way, let’s talk about some actual strategy. The first thing I like to do when setting up a plan for building a roster is to see if the league rules have created any positional scarcities that I need to consider. For example, if the league allows for starting two quarterbacks (i.e. 2QB or SuperFlex Leagues), even in 10-team leagues there is going to be significant scarcity at the QB position.
QBs are good:
I tend to favor QBs because I don’t want to depend on rookie or devy drafts to find a quality starter. So, in a league where you can start two, you better believe I’m prioritizing that position and hopefully getting someone like Andrew Luck, Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson – or one of the younger guys like Derek Carr or Marcus Mariota. Again, there are so few QBs coming into the league each year, and even fewer QBs that will play a down in an NFL game, that I want to make sure I have the position wrapped up with a stud for years to come.
I’m certainly not advocating that you take a QB with the 1.01 in a Startup draft. I wouldn’t suggest blowing your whole bankroll on a QB in an auction either. Because in my opinion there is a natural positional scarcity at another position you may want to focus on: running backs (RB).
As most savvy fantasy players know, an opportunity is one of the best traits (sometimes better than physical ability) to have. Just think about the free-agent bidding wars over backup RBs when a starter is injured. Because of this, one of the most telling stats for me when it comes to RBs is “total touches.” I define “total touches” as a combination of rushing attempts and passing targets. I use targets instead of receptions because I think it’s a better indicator of the potential for success. In 2016, there were only 24 running backs that had more than 200 total touches. Twelve of those RBs landed in the Top-50 overall in scoring in half-point PPR formats.
As a side note, most of my articles are going based on the premise of at least a half-point PPR format. I play, almost exclusively in PPR leagues.
My point here is I want to make sure I get one of those top 12 RBs. Preferably RBs under the age of 27, so I can get three or more years out of them. Pairing young RBs with a top QB option or two and build from there. In most Dynasty formats, rosters are 25 or more, the pool becomes progressively thinner. While I’m the type that says let your draft or auction come to you and don’t subscribe to trends like Zero Running Back or Zero Wide Receiver strategies, I do think getting at least one solid RB is key.
Always compliment the host!
Make sure you stay current on all rookies (and developmental players if your league allows them) by checking out DynastyFootballFactory. The Draft Scouting and Devy Watch sections are excellent resources. When you’re building your roster, you want to be aware of talented incoming rookie pools (like this year’s tight end class). This allows you to know where you might be able to leave a few holes in your roster to give you the ability to pay-up elsewhere.
Additionally, pay close attention to how your opponents build their rosters so you know who to target as trade partners, particularly if you decide you need to switch gears mid-season – or add a final piece to get your team over the hump.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, do not start any Dynasty league without a plan. Optimal you want to build your team with a good mix of aged veterans and young up-and-comers. This isn’t always possible though once you’re in the thick of the start-up. So, decide up-front if you are trying to win a championship in the first three years or are planning to go for the gold three years down the road. This will help you make those tough decisions when you’re faced with choosing between the vet and the rook.
Thanks for reading along. If you have any comments please leave them below. I can also be found on Twitter @WallyCentral. Good luck and go get em!