First Round Dynasty Picks Vs. Proven Commodities
Dynasty Picks Vs. Proven Commodities: The Raging Debate
If you are into fantasy football, then you are likely on Twitter. If you log on to Twitter, you can quickly find a heated debate of what is more valuable: a pick or a proven commodity. The argument is a legitimate one. It is also difficult to determine which side is correct. We are fortunate enough that dynasty has now been around long enough for us to gather more than a small sample size of draft results and try and draw some conclusions.
Agree to Disagree
Any fantasy football trade, regardless of league type, there is not always a winner and a loser. It is possible that both sides can win a trade and conversely, both sides can lose a trade. Fantasy football trades are usually formulated by multiple factors. It is usually rebuilding, having a position of need due to injury or simply looking to “buy low” or “sell high” on a certain player.
There are plenty of reasons to trade and if you are not actively doing it, you probably are not playing winning fantasy football. This article will discuss the potential value of first round picks. It will also let you know what they may bring you in return. This could be on the open market for a proven commodity in your dynasty league.
The 1.01 is a Lock to Produce
Using MFL’s ADP data from the past 10 years, it was determined that the 1.01 hit every year. A hit is defined as a top-12 quarterback, top-24 running back or receiver, and a top-12 tight end finish in at least one season in PPR formats. The draft results were for 12-team leagues with rookies only being drafted and a player being drafted in at least 25% of leagues (excluding mock drafts).
A running back was taken a whopping nine of the last 10 years with the 1.01. The one exception was Sammy Watkins in 2014. It is obvious the 1.01 is an extremely valuable piece in dynasty and it should be treated as such. If you are rebuilding, there really is no reason to trade it unless you can get a commodity and a solid pick in return. Otherwise, start young and grow your squad from there.
Suitable returns might be Leonard Fournette or James Conner. Both are young and are certainly RB1 players, but do come with some warts. In 2019, there is no true RB1 in the draft at this point, so it may be worth taking the plunge.
The 1.02 is Solid
Looking back at our chart, we see the 1.02 hit in seven of the last 10 years. The running back and receiver positions are a little more balanced here. The recent trend to go pass heavy in the NFL can contribute to that. Wideouts were taken at 1.02 in four of the past six years. If we dissect a new chart by position, we see that only half of the pass catchers taken here have hit over the past 10 years.
This is still a spot that can be traded out of this year for a Fournette, Connor or possibly even a Tyreek Hill if you find an owner nervous about his current legal situation. One big miss in this spot was Laquon Treadwell in 2016. This is not surprising however if we look at his combine spider chart. Fortunately, data and the industry has grown substantially since then and can be used to help us potentially avoid misses such as Treadwell.
Sell the 1.03?
Interestingly enough, the 1.03 has only hit 30% of the time. Players taken here over the past ten years include gems like Andrew Luck and Julio Jones. However, busts such as Bishop Sankey, Montee, Ball and Corey Coleman have been taken here. This could be a viable spot to sell at a high price in this year’s rookie drafts given the limited amount of clear studs in the class.
A trade back for more picks may be the sensible move here. You could still land a Fournette, Conner or Hill with this pick if you are in attack mode and want to be competitive in 2019. The 1.03 is also the earliest we have seen a quarterback taken over the past 10 years with Andrew Luck going here in 20.12
Running Back is Strong at the 1.04
Six running backs have been taken here over the past 10 years with a 66% rate. Carlos Hyde and Joe Mixon are two recent backs that have done well for those that had faith in them in this slot. Only one of the three receivers taken here have hit and that was Michael Crabtree all the way back in 2009.
The one quarterback that showed a touch of success was Robert Griffin III in 2012. This is a good spot to draft Josh Jacobs if you are running back needy or trade back for more picks if you are looking to rebuild. Jacobs appears to be the consensus RB1 in this year’s draft. As with most anyone covered here, landing spot will play a large factor in the value of the player.
The 1.05 to the 1.07
The success rate here holds at a solid 60% hit. It is still running back and wideout heavy in this range. This is a spot you can start to think about players such as A.J. Brown, Kelvin Harmon, Miles Sanders or even Noah Fant.
Sony Michel, Corey Davis or trading back are options in this spot depending on team needs. O.J. Howard is another potential target if you are needy at tight end and the current owner has a second option at tight end. Howard is primed for a breakout season given his point per opportunities and Bruce Arians arriving in Tampa Bay.
A Sneaky Good Spot (1.08)
A 70% rate of success has been found at the 1.08 spot over the past 10 years. Some recent young studs drafted here were Alvin Kamara and Calvin Ridley. Miles Sanders or Damien Harris could be this year’s Kamara at this spot depending on their pro destination. A solid strategy may be to sell the 1.03 and acquire a commodity and more draft picks. This, of course, depends on team needs.
There have also been two tight ends taken here over the last 10 years. This is the most of any slot in the first round, tying the 1.10 with two taken at the position. The two tight ends taken were Coby Fleener and Tyler Eifert. Don’t be afraid to target Noah Fant here as well. It is worth noting that the six tight ends taken in the last 10 years have hit 100% of the time.
The Best of the Rest (1.09 to 1.12)
The 2019 draft class is going to depend a ton on landing spots for many of the players involved. It’s not hard to find several different rookie rankings that are several spots apart on several picks. It is going to be difficult to predict the value for many until the NFL draft in April sorts everything out. If you are forced to do your rookie draft prior to the NFL draft, it is probably best to stockpile picks this year. There is an abundance of depth in 2019. The more shots you have to claim a hit this year, the better set you are for future success.
If we look at the success rate of first round picks in rookie drafts, we see that 58.3% of them have hit over the past 10 years. That may lean a bit to the picks are more valuable than commodities side, but it is honestly too close to declare a winner.
Positional hits are pretty even over the past 10 years with right around 50% of each position hitting. This is minus the tight end hitting at 100%. Only six of them have been selected however so it is not a large of a sample size to claim that you must take a TE in the first round. If you are rebuilding, this is the year to gather as many picks as possible. If you are in a competitive state then think of trading out for commodities mentioned above. One thing is for certain, it will be a blast as always come fantasy draft season.