I’ll admit the 2015 NFL season has left me scratching my head a little bit. The Seahawks are 0-2 after this weekend, and the Jaguars beat the Dolphins. The Oakland Raiders decided to win a game before mid-season, and how in the hell did Washington beat the Rams. Likewise, I am currently sitting 2-0 in one fantasy league and 0-2 in the other.
In one league, I’m Charlie Brown laying flat on my back wondering how I had been bested again, and in the other I’m Patty laughing hysterically with the football firmly in my grasp. Today I am writing to you as the 0-2 Brent Patterson. In a world that seldom lends a hand to the downtrodden, and in a fake sport where encouragement is often hard to find here is a little week 2 pick-me-up.
This time last year Tom Brady was the 30th quarterback in fantasy points, and he didn’t crack the top ten until week five. Calvin Johnson started last season strong scoring 28 fantasy points week one, but he didn’t see double digit points again until week ten. He played weeks 2-5 with a combined total of 18.4 fantasy points, and then he missed weeks 6-9. By season's end, "Megatron" was a top 15 fantasy wide receiver, and I guarantee those who sold low on him were kicking themselves.
If Ferris Bueller had allowed panic to consume him, his glorious day off would have been cut short. In fact, Ferris would probably still be in detention today if he had lost his cool when the heat was on. If you are 0-2 right now, then you have to resist the urge to turn your fantasy roster into a used car lot. Trust me I want nothing more than to trade Mike Evans away after two weeks of tying Ray Rice in fantasy points, but what would I get for him right now?
This advice is sound advice for your bench players as well. This past week I didn’t follow that advice. On Thursday, I dropped Matt Jones for a player that scored 0.3 fantasy points in week two. I picked up Matt Jones right before week one because I had a feeling about him, and I figured he would be a good bench stash. Well, after Alfred Morris had a good week one I figured Matt Jones was probably taking up valuable space on my bench, so I dropped him. Now I have to try and use a waiver wire pick on him, but I’m currently sixth on the wire.
Treasure Your Waiver Priority…(Depending on your league settings)
I am going to try to pick up Matt Jones on the wire this week for two reasons. One, I believe he has the talent to take over as the team's number one running back. Secondly, my ego won’t allow someone else to profit off of my stupidity. With that being said, I am not going to put in a claim for anyone else even though I desperately need a number two running back.
My leagues waiver settings are set up so that as soon as you use your waiver priority you are automatically moved to last on the list. Some leagues waiver priorities are determined by standings and reset each week based on wins and losses.. If your league's settings are like this then your waiver priority is probably pretty good if you're 0-2, and it won't change until you start winning. In my opinion this is like fantasy football socialism, it works for everyone except the guys at the top, but hey to each his own.
For everyone else who plays the Merican' way listen up.
When dealing with the waiver wire it is far too easy to get caught up in the thrill of possibly landing the Season’s breakout player, but don’t let that excitement make you feel like you have to pick up someone every week. As I am writing this, there are articles flooding the Internet telling you whom you should target on the wire this week, and I’m not saying that they are wrong. What I am saying is that there are going to be similar articles next week, and the week after that, and so on until the season is over. You shouldn’t use your waiver wire pick just because someone told you to.
Do your research on the players and make a decision, but there is no need always to have a first, second and third option. If you gamble with your waiver priority every week, you could potentially loose out to some great talent later this season.
(Update: The bad news is I didn’t get Matt Jones off the waiver wire, but the good news is I’m currently 3rd in waiver priority...take that commies)
The Breakout Player Of The Year Can Still Be Yours…
Believe it or not, there are probably some diamonds hidden on your waiver wire right now that no one is paying much attention to. It is much easier to find these players after they have already scored a "spit" load of fantasy points, but it's still possible to find them before that happens. It is also a lot easier to grab these diamonds in the rough before your entire league is trying to get them.
There is no science to this, but a great place to start is to begin thinking about the 32 teams in the league. Try to find teams that are going to have to make a hard decision by replacing a player that is under performing. Maybe a team has a rookie or veteran that is returning from IR soon. If you are paying attention to the league, then you will be as prepared as possible.
For instance, as it stands right now the Miami Dolphins have an under performing starting running back in Lamar Miller and no real answer at the number two position. However, Jay Ajayi is expected to be off of IR around mid-season. If the Dolphins have to endure the 2.9 per attempt average that Miller has shown thus far during that time span they will probably be more than ready to give Ajayi a shot.
Finding the potential in players now will help alleviate some of the stress of keeping your waiver priority high every week. Think about it this way. This time last year Odell Beckham Jr. was just a talented receiver buried on the Giants depth chart.
The important thing to remember is that it is only week three, and things are just getting started. Continue to stay informed on what’s going on around the league, and keep calm. The league will find its rhythm in a few weeks, and you will have a better idea of what to expect or what not to expect from your team. The last thing you want is to be on your 5th different roster by week five and dead last on the waiver wire.