By: Colton Linnertz
Making adjustments is the key to winning a fantasy football championship. Whether you are 0-3 or 3-0, you need to start adjusting to the 2012 season. Every season is different and your preseason strategy may not apply anymore. Even if your team is 3-0, you still need to stay on top of things and do some tweaking. Evaluate your roster, find your weaknesses and address them. Make moves, work the waiver wire, buy low, sell high or just simply add depth. Here are some tips & strategies for making those adjustments:
- Making a 2 for 1 trade is a great move if there is a quality player available to add off the waiver wire. It could possibly be an overall upgrade.
- Take a look at the bench players on the other teams in your league, these players are most likely either undervalued or that owner has a surplus at a certain position.
- Maybe you ended up with a team loaded at the WR position and you can use one of them to upgrade another position.
- Don’t let injuries get you down. Having several injuries on your team can actually make you a better fantasy football player, forcing you to pay attention and scout players a bit more closely.
- Play the matchup game with your defense. This can gain you just a few points each week just by adding the best matchup off the waiver wire.
- Look to trade away guys that have name value, but are not performing. They will get you more in a trade than a lesser known player with the same production.
- Maximize your total points: Having 3 or 4 players from one team limits the potential of your fantasy team. Say you have Brady, Gronk & Lloyd. What happens if Ridley runs in 4 TDs? You’re going to have a hard time winning that week. Spread your talent out as much as possible. This will make your team more consistent and help you avoid low scoring weeks.
- If you have the bench space, take a risk on a high upside guy off the waiver wire, like a Bryce Brown or a Phillip Tanner.
- Later in the season, rookies and backups tend to see more playing time as some teams fall out of contention.
- When setting your lineup each week, only use the weekly rankings as a guide. They are always biased towards the previous week.
Buy Low: Target these players in a trade
QB – Cam Newton: The Ultimate buy low candidate. Carolina’s defense is just awful, so they will be throwing to catch up most of the time. Cam has an offense loaded with weapons as well. The schedule gets much easier in the second half for the Panthers.
WR – Hakeem Nicks: His foot injury may have his owner worried. He had his surgically repaired foot stepped on and it was sore, but I believe the Giants were being cautions, realizing they didn’t need him to beat Carolina. He will only get stronger as the season goes on.
WR – Jordy Nelson: Three sub-par games so you might be able to steal him away. GB should be foaming at the mouth the rest of the season after that debacle in Seattle.
RB – LeSean McCoy: This one will be harder to pull off, but if his owner is frustrated with his 1st rd pick, now is the time to strike.
Sell: Bail on these players before it’s too late:
QB – Jay Cutler: You just can’t trust him enough to plug him into your fantasy lineup. The Chicago offensive line is in shambles. Defenses are taking Marshall away and leaving him nowhere to go with the ball. Cutler is droppable in a 12-team league.
QB – Philip Rivers: If you go back and look at his stats, he has been declining for 2 years and off to an awful start in 2012. Vincent Jackson is gone, Gates is getting older and Rivers will only be a matchup play or a backup the rest of the year.
QB – Michael Vick: Struggling and his health issues are a huge headache. Trade him away while he still has some value. He will have a big game here and there, but he is not consistent enough to rely on.
RB – Ahmad Bradshaw: Will the emergence of Andre Brown, 1st rd pick David Wilson lurking and Bradshaw’s health issues, I doubt he will be consistent the rest of the way.
Fantasy Gold: Add them, keep them or trade for these players before their owners know what they have:
TE – Jimmy Graham: Obviously he isn’t a secret, but he gives your team a huge advantage. He is the best TE in fantasy and no defense can shut him down. If he scored 2 TDs a week from this point on, I wouldn’t be shocked. If you can acquire him in a trade, do it. Gates owners should package him with another player and make an offer.
QB – Ben Roethlisberger: The Steelers essentially have two #1 WRs, a quality #3 and a TE in Health Miller that Ben trusts. The defense is no longer great, combine that with the fact this team can’t run the ball to save its life and it leads to huge games from Ben, like Week 3.
RB – Mikel Leshoure: I’m all in on this guy. There was all kinds of hype coming out of the draft about Leshoure, but then he was injured and missed all of 2011. With defenses focusing on some guy named Calvin Johnson, Mikel should be running wild all season.
QB – Andrew Luck: This is much like Roethlisberger’s situation, only with a defense that is much worse. Reggie Wayne, Donnie Avery & T.Y. Hilton will give Luck all the weapons he needs to be starter in a 12-team league. Luck has a very sneaky running ability that will only add to his fantasy value.
Top Adds for Week 4:
QB – Shaun Hill: We have seen him produces in this offense before and if Stafford misses time he is a great start.
RB – Ronnie Hillman: McGahee has a rib injury, but no word if he will miss time. If you need a RB to fill in and start in Week 4, then go with Lance Ball, but if you are looking for long term upside, Hillman is your man. Explosive, powerful and the ability to become a workhorse back. Once Denver trusts him in pass protection his playing time will increase.
WR – T.Y. Hilton: This guy is a playmaker. Indy is trying to get him more touches and for good reason. The Colts are on a BYE this week, but keep an eye on him or add him now if you have room.
TE – Health Miller: 4 TDs already and Roethlisberger looks for him in the red zone. Steelers also have a Week 4 BYE.
D – Arizona: The 2nd best defense in fantasy right now and they have great matchups coming.
D – Seattle: We saw them destroy both Dallas and Green Bay, they will be a consistent play each week.
WR – Andrew Hawkins: Simply the fastest man I have ever seen on the football field. The Bengals have increased his snaps each week and realize he needs more touches.
If you pay close attention, make quality moves and follow the NFL news, I guarantee you will have a terrific shot at making the playoffs in your league.
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