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Mike Vick with Philadelphia

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Guest writer: Eric Yeomans

When embarking on my first every dynasty football experience, I came in with a plan in mind, as any good team manager did. Lots of it didn’t pan out the way I had anticipated, which meant that my draft contained some disappointment as well as great opportunities.

My first plan: I WOULD own Beanie Wells, and made sure I snatched him up at 82nd overall. I absolutely love that kid, and I will make sure that this gets linked to the love ballad that I write about him in the near future.

Second: I wanted to own an élite QB. Given how long a QB’s career lasts, I wanted to make sure that I had no question marks.

Third: I wanted to create a solid young nucleus of WRs.

Fourth: I wanted to own at least one or two solid young TEs, especially with the 1.5 PPR

Fifth: I would build a group of RBs that were upside plays or bridge the gap type players. Reason being is if there’s any position to build through future rookie drafts, it’s RBs.

Sixth: Wait until my offense had starters and solid backups until I started to draft defensive players.

Seventh: Punt DLs, and just grab a group of potential high-tackle types.

I also made three trades during the draft, with two different owners. These deals involved a total of five players and nine draft picks, so for simplicity’s sake, I will just discuss these trades, and then list my team by position.

My first trade was with Bryan, where I received his 2nd and 8th round picks for my 3rd and 4th round picks.  I pounced on the offer to draft Michael Vick. I know the risks associated with him, and all that, but to own the player who scored 5 points per game more than anyone else with my 3rd overall pick was just too great to pass up. Given that I didn’t see too many difference makers in that second tier between the 3rd and 5th rounds, I was happy to pay the price. That trade basically ended up being Mike Vick and Zach Miller for Sam Bradford and Mark Ingram, which I think is fair value for both teams in a dynasty format, and I’m sure both teams would have gladly made the deal post draft.

My second trade was with the Richardson Hornfrogs. It took place in the 23rd round after my lottery ticket QB targets, Cam Newton, Blaine Gabbert, and Jake Locker had all been taken. At that point, my only backup QB was Mark Sanchez, who is young and does have some upside; I wasn’t really comfortable with as heir to my QB throne. So I inquired about my other QB  man-crush, Joe Flacco, and I decided to trade for him and picks for James Starks and picks. Given how bleak my RB situation was, I admit I was hesitant, but I wanted to have my future QB, and could not have gotten a better one. The trade ended up being Flacco, Ray Edwards, and Kory Biermann for James Starks, Johnny White, and Ryan Mallett. The X-factor there is how good James Starks can truly be if given the full load after this year.

My third trade was again with Richardson at the end of the 35th round. Given that I had Aaron Hernandez and a questionable running game, and he had four tight ends (Vernon Davis, Rob Gronkowski, Lance Kendricks, and Kellen Winslow), and had just acquired James Starks from me, I offered Kyle Rudolph and Alex Green to hedge his bet on the RB future of Green Bay, and in return got Gronkowski to hedge the New England TE future, as well as take full advantage of the 1.5 PPR, and his 35th round pick, the last pick overall. And with the 420th overall draft pick, I snagged LaDainian Tomlinson, who should give more than enough flex/Bye-week value for me in a PPR league.

QB:  Michael Vick, Joe Flacco, Mark Sanchez

I have potentially the top QB and player for the next 3-5 years, and I paired him up with a player who could be a future star, and is every bit and more than overrated Matt Ryan, in Joe Flacco. However, I would rather have a QB lottery ticket as my QB3 than a low upside player like Mark Sanchez, and there’s always the risk associated with Vick. And for that, I penalize my QBs. Grade: A-

RB:  Knowshon Moreno, Beanie Wells, Pierre Thomas, Shane Vereen, Stevan Ridley, LaDainian Tomlinson

I have Beanie, who will have a breakout season, and the New England future backfield in Vereen and Ridley. Then there’s Knowshon Moreno and Pierre Thomas. Both are pretty fragile, and definitely will be in some  time share to stay healthy and productive, but both have been extremely effective in those types of roles the last two seasons (30th and 20th per game RBs in ’09 and 13th and 14th in ’10, respectively). Finally is Tomlinson, who is going to lose a bunch of carries this year, but has been a top 30 RB the last two seasons, and could still give close to that type of value if he continues to catch 50+ passes. There are question marks surrounding my running game, although I definitely feel more than comfortable with the situation, I am attempting fairness with my grading.  Grade: C+

 WR:  Hakeem Nicks, Dez Bryant, Michael Crabtree, Mike Sims-Walker, Torrey Smith, Julian Edelman

Nicks and Bryant are WR1s for the next decade, Crabtree is a WR2 with WR1 upside, Sims-Walker has upper level WR2 potential depending on where he lands, Torrey Smith appears as Flacco’s go-to receiver for the next decade, and Edelman could be the next Wes Welker as soon as next year. There are few teams that can match my combination of age and talent here.  Grade: A-

 TE:  Zach Miller, Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkwoski

All three finished within the top-20 per game at the TE position, two were rookies, and the other one played hurt through the second half of the season. At an average age of 23 years old, there is tons of potential here with an extremely high floor as well. There are only one or two teams on my level at TE.  Grade: A

Editor’s note, Eric tried to talk about his kickers and that is not allowed here at

 DL:   Ray Edwards, Kroy Biermann, Ahtyba Rubin, Mike Devito

All of these guys are pretty much sleeper picks that I started drafting in the 27th round. I only need to start two, and this scoring system means that is the most I will start on non-Bye weeks. It also means that I could easily handle the risk associated with taking sleepers here. But now, they’re nothing to get excited about.  Grade: C

 LB:   Brian Cushing, Jamar Chaney, Daryl Washington, Geno Hayes, Rey Maualuga

I’m a lot higher on this group this most. Cushing is a tackling machine, Chaney is intriguing after his ridiculous finish last season, Washington is an athletic freak who should see a spike in playing time now that he’s not a rookie, Hayes is a playmaker on the weakside, and Maualuga is the MLB of the future for Cincinnati, maybe even as soon as this year. At the end of the day, all are almost locks for 100+ tackles, and none have yet to reach their 25th birthdays. Their best days are still ahead of them, and they should all have 5+ years of solid numbers.  Grade: B

 DB:  Patrick Chung, Joe Haden, Earl Thomas, Antoine Cason, Jaiquawn Jarrett, Craig Dahl.

IDPers the world round rejoice at this coup. Despite punting IDPs, I somehow managed to assemble this group. Although the PFF rankings are based on slightly different scoring, their dynasty rankings at the time of the draft still offer an idea of how well I did (12th, 4th, 10th, 22nd, 23rd, and 46th among DBs). All but Dahl are true studs, and Dahl is simply insurance for Jarrett during his rookie season.  Grade: A+

 To bring this all together, I ended up accomplishing all of my goals, got a lot of players that I wanted, and had some pleasant surprises along the way. I like the theory having a team whose floor has playoff potential and ceiling has a championship as soon as this year, as well as the amount of youth on my team, with an average age of 23.8 years old. Although I’m a rookie at this whole dynasty thing, that to me seems like a recipe for success, and a great dynasty strategy.  Team Grade: B



One Comment

  1. For those wondering about what my kicker section said:

    Sebastian Janikowski, how I love thee,
    Let me count thy ways,
    You’re always in field goal range,
    You can kick the ball for days,
    And when I’m down by a couple points,
    Sebastian comes to the rescue,
    With seconds left, from 70 yards out,
    I know he’s putting the ball through.

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