Trade Explorer - Week 2
By Zach Owen
This week, we’re going to look at some trades involving a couple of the top RBs. These are managers who have received offers of 3 or more players/picks for their one RB. These types of trades can be deceptive, especially if you live by trade calculators, which I don’t recommend in general. They’re good to gauge player values but I highly recommend referencing different sources to make decisions (like articles or writers talking about trade values *wink wink*).
Dalvin Cook for Keenan Allen, Chase Edmonds, and Damien Harris
So the first trade here is a 3-for-1, trading Dalvin Cook for multiple depth pieces. In this league, you only start 1 RB, 2 WRs, and there are 3 Flex positions. Here is the manager’s current RBs and WRs for some context as well (at least the relevant ones).
RBs: Dalvin Cook, D’Andre Swift, Miles Sanders, and Myles Gaskin
WRs: DK Metcalf, Terry McLaurin, Tee Higgins, and Jaylen Waddle
Now at first glance the idea of this trade makes sense: trading away a star player in a position you have depth (RB) for a position you could use help in (WR). On top of that, if you plug this into some calculators it will say it’s a pretty fair deal. So this doesn’t seem too bad on the surface but I was pretty quick to say keep Cook. The biggest thing that gave me hesitation, is that this manager isn’t really getting many starters in return for Cook. That’s the problem with a lot of these types of trades. Are you realistically planning to ever start Edmonds or Harris over Swift or Sanders? There’s a case where you could start Harris over Gaskin but in a 1RB league, you hope to never have to play your 3rd RB. So this ends up being Cook for Allen plus some bench players (even if they’re decent bench players). That is definitely NOT worth it in my book.
The idea here is good given the RBs and WRs this manager has. If you’re going to trade a star for depth though, you want it to be depth that you actually need. I don’t know what the other manager has but I’d much rather replace the two RBs with another WR if possible. Someone like Courtland Sutton, DJ Moore, or Chris Godwin (all with similar value to Edmonds + Harris). One side or the other might have to add a future 2nd round pick to even it out but you’d be in a much better spot than trading for benchable RBs.
Alvin Kamara for Chase Claypool, Tony Pollard Adam Trautman, 22 1st, 22 2nd, & 22 3rd
The only thing we know about this league is that it’s a PPR league. More context is better when trying to make trade decisions (see Trade #1) but there’s enough here in my opinion to make a decision. So similar to above, we have a trade where a manager is getting a lot of pieces for their one star RB. Plugging it into a trade calculator gives you the same result, favoring the bulk side. Again, I’m standing pat on Kamara for the same reasons as before. Pollard, Trautman, and the 3rd are basically non-factors to me when dealing with a valuable piece like Kamara. If you are a big fan of Pollard or Trautman, that could swing the trade that way, but personally I am not. I don’t see Pollard, Trautman, or a 3rd round rookie as potential starters. So to me, we have Kamara for Claypool, a 1st, and a 2nd which isn’t very appealing. If I’m moving a star like Kamara, I want real pieces.
If I’m looking to rebuild, which is the case for this manager, Claypool and the 1st is a good start. Turn all those extra parts (Pollard, Trautman, 2nd, and 3rd) into another 1st and I’d be more interested. If you want a player instead of a first you could try for one of the young injured RBs that a manager is wanting to move (Cam Akers, JK Dobbins, or Travis Etienne). Either the 1st or the RB are similar in value to all the random pieces but you’ll hopefully end up with an eventual starter.
The moral of the story here is when dealing with high value pieces, 4 quarters is not always worth a dollar. When doing these types of trades, you have to ask yourself how many players or pieces are you actually going to be able to use or get future value from. A trade calculator would tell you that 20 3rd round picks could buy you a star player but that’s never going to happen. Though it would be impressive if someone somehow ended up with that many 3rd round picks. I do want to be clear though that I’m not necessarily saying someone has to offer me the moon to trade my stars. I’m just saying that I don’t want to trade elite, proven performance to gamble with dart throws.
I also want to add that your opinions on the individual players involved will affect these types of trades. If you think Kamara is washed after two weeks and you’re trying to sell while he still has some value (I do not agree but that’s another article) then sometimes you have to take what you can get. Or if you think Pollard is the next RB1 in Dallas, buying low now could work out. Trading is tricky and there are a lot of variables in trades like this. That’s why I emphasized at the beginning that you don’t want to base your decisions on just one source. Read articles, talk to people, etc. Exposing yourself to multiple sources of information can help remove any biases or preconceived notions you have about a situation. It’s an important habit to adopt not only in the fantasy world but in the real world as well.
Feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @NeutralZoneFF if you have any Fantasy related questions.
Zach has background in data analysis. That coupled with his interest in sports made this the perfect hobby. Zach is always looking to learn more and try new league settings and scoring. His main interests right now is mastering the ins and outs of IDP.