In most of my 2-QB fantasy football league drafts this year I employed the ‘Studs and Streaming’ draft strategy, and up to this point it has been successful, to varying degrees.
Even if you have a great draft, you still have to be a proactive manager all season long, and not rest on your draft day haul. No matter how nice on the surface your August or September draft looks, come early November, it could be in shambles.
Luckily the waiver wire and trades are available to us as options to help tinker with our teams, in our attempts to trot out the best possible 2-QB line-up every week.
The purpose of this weekly 2-QB trading series on XN Sports is to make you aware of how important trading is in fantasy football, and to help craft potential trade scenarios in your head you can use in your actual 2-QB league.
With the majority of the bye weeks out of the way, and the trade deadline in most 2-QB leagues coming up, I wanted to highlight a recent trade in a 2-QB league that’s a classic “bye week” trade.
In this league, I was employing the “Studs and Streaming” approach with Russell Wilson and Mike Glennon, after losing Sam Bradford to injury, and trading away Alex Smith.
I also have Josh McCown on my bench, but with a healthy Jay Cutler back in the fold, McCown held no current starting fantasy value for me, going into the start of Week 10.
One thing my roster did have was plenty of running backs, and one name that was drawing some interest was the soon-to-return Andre Brown.
Looking for a simple bye week fill in for Russell Wilson’s Week 12 bye, I looked at the rosters of my fellow 2-QBers, to see who I could set my eyes on. The first name I was immediately drawn to was Case Keenum, but the price tag was too rich for my blood.
When trading, I try to inquire about certain players before making a trade offer, as to expedite the trade talks, or cut them off before they even start.
Every fantasy football owner has different values on players, and if the price is not going to cost me more than I can afford, I’ll move onto the next step of the trade discussions. If I’m uncomfortable mortgaging away part of my team, I simply walk away.
This is something that should be remembered by owners entering trade talks, and especially those who enjoy sending out low-ball offers, because low-ball offers are easy ways of ending not only current trade talks, but cutting yourself off from future trading partners, who deem your low-ball offers too insulting.
Once my initial trade target of Case Keenum was shot down, I dug through my quarterback research to find one quarterback I would not only feel comfortable starting in Week 12, but would also be relatively affordable, in terms of 2-QB league trade currency.
We’ve already seen how different quarterback values are in 1-QB leagues compared to 2-QB leagues, and once you come to terms with that, it will make trading easier.
The quarterback I settled on in this instance was Jason Campbell, and his Week 12 match-up versus the Pittsburgh Steelers. In two starts, Campbell has been a QB1 fantasy quarterback, and scored 21.42 and 24.48 standard fantasy points in his two respective starts.
While the Steelers are giving up an average of 15.44 standard fantasy points per game, which is the eighth fewest, a look under the hood shows a defense that’s been hit or miss against quarterbacks this season, with their two recent pass defensive performances showing just how hit or miss they’ve been.
In Week 9 versus Tom Brady, they allowed the Patriot quarterback to throw for 432 yards, four touchdowns, and zero interceptions. In Week 10 though they only gave up 155 yards and a touchdown to EJ Manuel, while also intercepting him once.
To read more about the deceiving Pittsburgh Steelers defense make sure you check out this numberFire.com piece by Tony DelSignore.
Campbell’s not in Brady’s league of course, but since taking over for Weeden, Campbell has thrown 71 pass attempts, while the Browns have only rushed the ball a total of 44 times, with Campbell accounting for seven of those rushes.
Take away Campbell’s seven rushes, and that’s a 71:37 pass to rush ratio. The Browns have enjoyed passing the ball with Campbell under center, and when you’re running backs are Willis McGahee, a man with a hard-to-pronounce last name (Chris Ogbonnaya), and another who has a first name of Fozzy (Whittaker), and it makes sense to pass more than run.
Targeting Campbell as a one week bye week fill-in might turn out to be a bad move, and now that Cutler is week-to-week, McCown would have been an adequate fill-in option, as well. I also dropped Scott Tolzien early Sunday morning, who also happens to be a starting quarterback right now.
But the research led me to Campbell, and heading into the week, McCown and Tolzien were both real-life NFL back-ups.
With Andre Brown as my trade bait, the Campbell owner was willing to listen to offers, as he had a surplus of quarterbacks, and a need at running back. His initial offer of Campbell/DeAngelo Williams for Andre Brown/Dennis Johnson was rejected by me, as I had no interest in acquiring a running back in Williams, who is part of a three-person RBBC.
I let him know Brown for Campbell straight up would be fine with me, after he rejected my idea to replace Williams with Chris Ivory or Michael Floyd, and after a while of mulling the offer over, it was agreed upon.
My roster had four starting running backs (Andre Brown, CJ Spiller, Darren Sproles, and Matt Forte), and another running back that’s only a broken rib set-back away from starting (Dennis Johnson), so it was an area I could lose some depth.
The trade was consummated Sunday morning, and after I traded him away, I saw Andre Brown run the ball 30 times for 115 yards, and a touchdown. I had no idea that would happen, but I knew it wasn’t going to happen for my team. Watching a player perform well after you trade him is something that will happen in any fantasy trade.
You just have to be able to accept it, and even if Campbell starts one game, or none for my 2-QB team, it was a trade that was made based on the research process.
Sure, Brown might outscore Campbell the rest of the season as well, but how many of those points would he have scored for me?
With, Campbell, at the time of the trade talks, I knew he would start at least one game for me, and that was worth making the trade. It shouldn’t matter how many points Brown won’t be scoring for my team, as you can only control who does start for your team.
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