My First Season of Devy is over. Now what?
By Joe Goodwin
This article is taking a first person approach to how to manage your devy league team through my lens of managing my own team. This league began its startup draft last year and we are in our first off season of moves. First of all, you need to evaluate your roster and determine areas of strength and weakness and how to approach them during the off season.
Be sure to check out our Devy Rankings
My QB situation is definitely in flux. I have Aaron Rodgers as my starting quarterback. The information being released to the public does little to inform us what his future holds in Green Bay or anywhere else. His retreat leads the way??? I’m in trouble if Rodgers thinks sitting in the dark for 4 days is coming to enlighten him on his NFL future.
My other two QBs are Derek Carr (not a starting QB at the moment) and Jimmy Garoppolo (also not a starter). With this, I will need to either devise a plan to trade for a quarterback that has a stable starting job to cover my superflex position, or draft a young QB in my devy draft and wait for reinforcements to come in a few years. My quarterback situation is not a great one. As I head into next season, I do not have a lot of confidence in the position until Jimmy G and Carr find starting jobs. If they both find new homes as starters, I can plan for the future and hope both sustain Top 24 status.
However, if Rodgers retires and one or both of Carr and Jimmy G do not secure a starting position, I will need to trade for a bridge quarterback like Geno Smith or Kirk Cousins until I can establish a younger core of quarterbacks.
With most devy leagues, CJ Stroud, Bryce Young, Will Levis, Hendon Hooker, and Anthony Richardson are most likely rostered. And, since I don’t have any of those QBs on my devy roster, I will look toward taking a late round flier on Max Duggan, Tanner McKee or Jaren Hall; each offers some upside as a player that could possibly find a niche in the NFL.
And with this instability at the quarterback position, I will do a lot of homework on the current college quarterbacks as I focus my attention on how to best you my devy draft picks for this year.
My QB group is an area of need during this off season and I will be an active manager in the QB department until my depth rivals my next position group.
The following players are on my roster:
I currently love Mixon, Taylor, Williams and Pacheco with Gibbs joining that group. Both Mixon and Taylor provide me with top tier starters and all Williams does is score touchdowns. In addition, I have Pacheco and Gibbs as younger, buddening stars ready for prominent roles. And, I still have Donovan Edwards on my devy roster that will most likely elevate next year. During my devy draft, I will look to draft at least 1, maybe 2 running backs to ensure I have some long term depth at the position. And will look for a “high upside” running backs during our Rookie Draft (Chase Brown or Tyjae Spears). With the startable depth right now, I can afford to take a big swing during the rookie draft and hope for a lottery ticket. With Joe Mixon and Johnathan Taylor as my mainstays, I feel comfortable at the position currently. I will continue to add depth through the rookie and devy drafts, but I do not anticipate any major move this off season unlike my next position group.
My next position group is probably my weakest.
The following players are on my roster:
Obviously, the start of Lamb and Olave are strong and should hopefully provide many years of success. Bateman, when healthy, will be a great 3rd receiver. However, the depth falls off after that. With no receivers being elevated from my devy roster this year, my only way of addressing the position is through the rookie draft or trade. I am in luck, because this year’s rookie draft is full of “potentially” good receivers with upside that are not already on rosters like Jalin Hyatt, Rashee Rice, or Zay Flowers.
In addition to the rookie draft, I also want to evaluate my current developmental players at the position. I currently have zero wide receivers on my devy roster. This is a position that I will target with at least one, but more likely, two picks during our next devy draft. I want to create a pipeline of players that will continue to fill in my roster every few years. In general, I try to find receivers from programs that have had a track record of developing NFL receivers (Ohio St, Alabama, LSU). Even though some freshmen and sophomores from those schools aren’t seeing a lot of playing time now, those schools have demonstrated an ability to bring along talent slowly, but impactful when asked to contribute.
If I am not successful addressing my depth issues through the draft, I will need to start talking with other managers about potential trades. One word of advice for any novice devy player:
Do not trade rookie or devy draft picks for a player that will only provide you one or two years of moderate statistics. For example: Do not trade a 3rd round rookie for Adam Thielen. Instead, look for players that may take a step forward in their role with their team that can be solid additions to your roster. A few players I believe that fit that criteria are: Donovan Peoples-Jones, Brandon Aiyuk, or Khalil Shakur.
Or, take that rookie pick and find a player with a ton of upside and swing for the fences. Do not waste assets for a player that is about to fade away from fantasy relevance. My wide receiver group lacks depth, but does have impact at the top. My next position group may not have any elite players, but has depth I mix and match depending on matchups.
My Tight End group has a lot of solid players, but no game changers.
I currently have:
Again, the group isn’t remarkable, but I only need 1 to start and I have enough choices to make that happen. I am also hopeful that Sean Payton can reignite Russell Wilson and the Broncos and potentially place Dulcich into top 12 territory with a more efficient offense that will utilize Dulcich’s abilities.
Although the tight end position may need work, I currently have Brock Bowers on my devy roster. He, most likely, will elevate next year and provide more depth to the position group and may even be my starter right away.
I will also look to draft a tight end in this year’s rookie draft. Some of my current tight end fliers are: Dalton Kincaid, Tucker Kraft, Luke Musgrave, Zack Kuntz, and Sam LaPorta. Each, in the right situation, will offer bye week replacements and possibly more.
I will also look at this position group during my devy draft. Although I have some other areas of need, I try to never let need overtake value. If a highly rated tight end falls in the draft, I won’t reach for a position of need and pass up insane value on a tight end. In the end, your roster needs to be filled with players that score points, not necessarily position dependent.
After evaluating my roster and potential needs, I need to go through and determine what players are currently rostered but could be cut. Please keep in mind: I am not cutting any players yet. I am going through my roster to determine if any player’s current roster spot could be better utilized by a rookie or free agent that has a better path to playing time (and ultimately, more fantasy points).
The following is a list of players that are currently on my roster that could potentially be cut to make room for players selected in the rookie draft or added from the free agent wire.
All of the above players are expendable. And, yes, some do have some possible value. Hunter Renfrow and Greg Dortch have some WR 5 or 6 value if their current situations improve; Renfrow needs a quarterback and Dortch needs an offense. As I make my rookie selections, I can stock my taxi squad or make the necessary cuts above to allow a player with potential time to find a role on his team.
With some of the “prep” work completed, I can now enter the off season of my first devy league and begin to build a dynasty through wise rookie draft picks, using developmental picks to swing for the fences, and always be willing to talk with league mates on potential trades.
Always remember to keep flexibility with your roster and picks.
Be willing to pivot for value, not need.
Never be afraid to make a bold move if you truly believe in a player/team.
Never crush “accept” or “decline” on a trade within the first 30 seconds. Alway evaluate the trade from many angles.
Be willing to negotiate with all league mates.
Your rookie and devy draft picks are your lifeline to continued success and should be valued accordingly!
I will continue with updates as my off season progresses and my roster improves!
Reach out to me on twitter at: @JGoody77 for any questions, advice, or general fantasy chat.
Full time teacher, full time fantasy sports enthusiast. I try to look at fantasy sports through my own lens and share that vision with my readers I love to explore and find new, and exciting fantasy football options including: C2C, dynasty, IDP, and Devy. See me on Twitter @JGoody77
Always willing to give advice, reach out via Twitter