HIT the LINKS: FF Trading











So we have reached the halfway point of the fantasy football season. It’s hard to believe. This is the time to take a hard look at your team to determine what you need to do to have a chance at the playoffs or what you need to keep you on your current path.

If you are in a dynasty league and have lost 4 or 5 games already maybe it could be time to start thinking about next year and load up on young talent that can win it all for you in 2014/15.

So how do you do this? Sure there is always the ones you can GET and FORGET off waivers and off the scrap heap, but the best way is through TRADES.  This article is all about the art of FF trading with tools and tips and to help you make the right moves for your team now and for the future. It’s followed by a great recipe for Grilled Beef Yakitori.

lets get to it!


Fantasy Football Trading 101


Trading is one of the most fun and potentially one of the most lucrative options a fantasy football owner has. A trade can make a mediocre team great, on the other hand however, it can make a great team mediocre. It’s always important to remember the whole reason you’re trading is to make your team better.

Trades are an extremely important part of fantasy football and, next to the draft, are the easiest way to make improve your team. But what method is the most efficient way to conduct a trade in fantasy football? There are a ton of trading strategies out there. Some like to come in with an offer nowhere near their potential best in the off-chance that they can fool another owner, while others give their best offer from the beginning and don’t budge.

If someone comes to you with a trade offer, they are obviously interested in improving their team or in something you have. But which is it? The savvy owner will see through a trade request to get to the real burning question in the heart of the other owner.

You always want to make sure you are not creating a weakness by replacing one, and you should always look at the waiver wire first to make sure a free agent won’t work just as well. Trading is the one of the best things about playing fantasy football. It can however, end a season during it. If you have solid depth at a certain position, you can trade your depth to improve a weaker position on your team. Having a strong bench is a nice luxury, but only your starting lineup can win you games.

Keeping all this in mind, there are 10 rules to follow to insure that you get the most out of your trading experience.

1. Never Pass up a Chance to Talk TRADE
2. Be Attentive
3. Know your League Rules
4. Perform a S.W.O.T. Analysis of your Team
5. Think About the Future
6. Be Proactive
7. Adapt and Overcome
8. Be Decisive
9. Patience is a Virtue
10. Act like you’ve Been There Before



1. Never pass up a chance to talk TRADE

It is always advantageous to approach trading partners in general terms, letting them know what you are looking for without letting them know who you are looking for. “I am looking to upgrade at RB#2” or “I’d like to move some WR depth for a better backup QB” You can see what they want without making any concrete offers, and often can end up getting a better player than you might otherwise get. Sometimes asking for a particular player can scare off a potential trader, as they feel that you know something they don’t.

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2. Be Attentive

Understanding the values other owners place on their players is imperative in negotiating a favorable trade. During the first few weeks of the season, pay close attention to waiver wire acquisitions, trades made, and players started. Every time you talk to owners, try to get a bit of information regarding how they value various players on their teams. Keep your own thoughts close to your vest, and never give up opinions about your players. Taking notes will give you the advantage of negotiating from a position of knowledge when you enter trade talks.

The key to obtaining value in a trade is to seek out those teams most desperate at a certain position, fill that hole, and obtain a player of greater value at another position (preferably one that is their strength). Look for owners who are very weak at a position because of injuries or byes.

HIT the LINKs: FF Injury Reports



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3. Know your League Rules

This is the key to good drafting as well as to making good trades. By “knowing your rules,” One can best take advantage of their situation by shrewdly analyzing the relative merits of any particular player within the confines of your league’s specific scoring rules. Knowing which players have value in your scoring system which exceeds their perceived or their NFL value can help you get a desirable player while giving up less than he is really worth. For example, in leagues where you MUST start four WRs, the value of the top WRs is elevated somewhat. Likewise, the trade value (and the value to you) of that third All-Pro RB on your roster is very different if your league starts one RB weekly versus his value if you are allowed to start three RBs each week. Does your league rewards pass catching RBs, either with 1 point per reception, or double points for receiving yards or scores? Then NFL backups may be much more valuable in your FFL than anyone in your league realizes.

On the other end of the spectrum you need to know which players are overvalued based on their actual skill set, and realize that they are prime trade bait to send away in order to get a player you truly can use. Does your league penalize for interceptions? Even though most people will fall in love with QB yardage and TDs, they are ranked much higher in scoring systems that do not penalize for INTs.



4. Perform a S.W.O.T. analysis of your team

It is often quite easy to see where your own team could stand a little improvement. However, the difficulty that most owners have is in realistically assessing one’s own strengths ; most every owner vastly overrates their own team’s assets, often never recovering from the love affair which started at the draft back in August ! But you must be brutally honest with yourself about what you really have on your roster, because any potential trading partner will be equally brutal when your roster gets evaluated for trading fodder. One has to deal from one’s own strength, as well as from your trade partner’s perceived strength of the guys on your roster.

Before any trade is proposed, it is imperative to know your team goals. Are you in a redraft or keeper league? What are the positional requirements and what is the scoring system?

Once you know your own strengths and weaknesses, analyze the other teams in your league. Which teams are weak at the positions at which you are strongest? These owners should be your targets. Suppose you have four very talented WR’s, for example, in a league that only starts two. Seek out the teams with the weakest wide receivers, as they will be most likely to deal.

Don’t ever assume that you have to get equal “draft day” value for a player, that has been sucking heavily and weighing down your lineup for the last 6 weeks. If you see that a guy has been underperforming his draft position – believe me, your potential trade partners know this too!

One the flip side; if there is an owner in your league that is exhibiting this same sort of unnatural fondness for a particular player on your team and is overvaluing him from a fantasy perspective…. then you have a potential trading partner that may give you a little more for your man than another team would. We are all guilty now and again of hanging onto a favorite player for one year too long. To be a good trader, you must know when to walk away from those sorts of players when they simply aren’t doing it anymore.

HIT the LINKs: Rate my Fantasy Footbal Team

fantasySP team analyzer



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fantasyPROS team player rankings



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5. Think About the Future

When it comes to your league, you need to know everything about everything. The first thing to do when proposing or evaluating a trade is to study it. Then, think about it from every angle possible. When you’re done thinking about it, study some more. Then, think about it again. The more perspectives you look at the trade from and the more research you do the better the deal will be for you. Study the remaining schedules of the players in question. Take a look at key injuries to other members of their teams that could effect their numbers.
Most fantasy coaches are so focused on the next game that they don’t plan ahead to avoid bye-week conflicts and poor matchups. By knowing the schedule and the upcoming matchups, you can make trades to avoid problems that could harm your team’s chances, and you can pinpoint teams that are headed for trouble.

HIT the LINKs: Player Value

CBS Sports



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HIT the LINKs: Keeper/Dynasty Player Value




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6. Be Proactive

In fantasy football, timing is everything. You must continuously evaluate and reevaluate players as the season progresses. Every time there is an injury, coaching change, slump, or streak an opportunity presents itself. Be the first to the trading table. Know what players are on other owners’ teams, your team, and waivers. Look for guys that have below average numbers up to that point in the year, and take into account situations that have contributed to those numbers. Make a list of players you think will outperform their current value and go after them. This is just the classic stock market “buy low, sell high” mentality. Chart out what other owners’ strengths are, and target those positions. Owners are a lot more likely to trade quality players to you if they have several other good players at those positions. Know your own strengths and deal from them without giving away too much depth. If you are strong at a position, other owners will be weak. Take advantage of this by disparity and improve your starters. The key is to be aware of situations and have enough confidence to pull the trigger as soon as they present themselves.

HIT the LINKs: Trade Analzers




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7. Adapt and Overcome

When trading, it’s important that you never allow yourself to be labeled. Be ever changing in your strategies, molding them to fit each individual owner in your league. Some owners will cave to pressure while others need to feel like they are driving the trade. You may be able to get an owner to feel sorry for you, or you may be able to ship another owner’s favorite player to him for a premium price. It all goes back to knowing the tendencies of your fellow players. Continually try new things, being creative and inventive. If you are looking for a RB2 make a proposal for another owner’s RB1then “settle” for his 2. Look for an advantage, and when the deal is in your favor close it as quickly as possible.

HIT the LINKs: Trade Info




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FFinsidenews Analyzer



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8. Be Decisive

Once you’ve done your research, thought through it, and know your how you feel about a trade don’t let a smooth talking fellow owner change your mind. Make your decision and stick to it. Indecision will tilt the scales to favor your opponent, and will at best prevent you from getting the best deal possible.



9. Patience is a Virtue

The hardest thing to do when negotiating a trade is to know when to walk away. Sometimes a trade just isn’t in your favor, and it won’t be. Don’t just trade for the sake of trading. If you are having a great season, why tamper with your starting lineup? Never allow yourself to become desperate. Always judge a trade on it’s value, and if you aren’t getting good value, walk away from it. If you are weak at a position or your number one guy just went down, field offers until you get an offer that adds value to your team. On the other hand, be willing to take “no” for an answer. If you make a proposal that you feel represents your best offer, but the other owner declines it. That’s fine.

You may not do not come in with your best offer, as you want room to negotiate, but do not come in too low either. This could just piss off your potential trade partner and they will just simply ignore your offer altogether. It’s best to come in with a strong offer that is not quite your most extravagant. That way, you can reasonably expect an immediate trade acceptance while also allowing yourself room to maneuver should that first request be denied.



10. Act Like you’ve Been There Before

Once you have completed a trade, it is important not to brag about how much you ripped the other owner off, even if you believe you got a great deal. Most trades simply make both teams better, particularly when you are not trading players at the same position. You are trying to create connections for future trades. You never want to isolate yourself other owners with post-trade antics.

If you are a team not involved with a trade, don’t be a crybaby that a trade is not fair. Just because at first glance a trade doesn’t appear fair doesn’t mean it’s not a fair trade. Take a step back and dig a little deeper. Consider strength of schedule, some players tendencies to perform better late in the season, and the all mighty injury. There’s always some unknown that you won’t account for which determines if the trade is fair. No matter how you much you analyze a trade you’ll never come up with the right answer. Many times we get caught up in who’s being traded instead of why they’re being traded. It doesn’t matter who is being traded for whom. What matters is does this trade improve all teams involved? If the answer is yes then it’s a fair trade.

If the answer is a resounding “NO” voice your opinion to your league commish and ask for the trade to be vetoed and voided by a league vote. Remember trades affect every other team in the league. You may not think so but when it comes right down to it there’s always a team that may not make the playoffs had this poor trade been allowed. This poor trade could cause your team or another owner a spot in the playoffs, and it is all on you if you do nothing about it. If for some reason your concerns go unanswered and the deal goes through, act like you’ve been there before and deal with it.

HIT the LINKs: Fantasy Football Arbitration

Resolve your Issues



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Bottom Line: The most important rule in trading is to make sure your team is going to be better after the trade.





Grilled Beef Yakitori

This little beef kebab is perfect as an appetizer or part of a main course. Yes, Yakitori means grilled bird, but this method and marinade is just to good to leave it to only chicken. If you really want tradition eat this with a cold beer.



1 pound beef sirloin, sliced into thin, long strips
2 green onions, finely chopped
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced



In a small mixing bowl combine soy sauce, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, oil, sesame seeds and onion. Set aside.

Thread beef onto bamboo skewers, pushing the skewer in and out of the meat as though sewing.

You should have enough meat for 16-18 skewers.

Place skewered meat in marinade, make sure it is well coated.

Place in a large pan, cover and allow to refrigerate 3-4 hours.

Preheat grill for medium high heat.

Take skewered meat out of pan and discard marinade.

Place on grill and cook for 3-4 minutes turning occasionally.

Remove from heat and serve immediately.




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