100 Fantasy Football Tips in 100 Days, Day 29: Pay the cheapest possible price.
Fantasy football is all about value, so it follows that cheaper is usually better. From my new book Fantasy Football for Smart People: 25 Mysteries Solved to Help You Draft a Better Team:
In daily fantasy football, my strategy is more or less to locate production at its cheapest possible point. So if I like wide receiver X at $8,000, I’ll see how easily I can replace that production with a cheaper player, normally by targeting those who have underachieved lately, thus offering long-term production at a price that represents faux short-term struggles. In almost every case, cheaper equals better because it allows for flexibility elsewhere.
Well, the same is true in season-long fantasy football. When possible, you want to identify the cheapest possible price you can pay for certain levels of production. You could argue that Zac Stacy circa his 2013 rookie year was a very close approximation of Doug Martin, for example. Martin was a top three pick in every draft, however, while Stacy was drafted after the 10th round. Much of that had to do with projected workload, but take a look at their measurables and college stats:
Zac Stacy: 5-9, 216 pounds, 3,143 yards, 5.4 YPC, 4.55 40-yard dash, 6.70 three-cone drill, 4.17 short shuttle, 27 reps
Doug Martin: 5-9, 215 pounds, 3,431 yards, 5.6 YPC, 4.55 40-yard dash, 6.79 three-cone drill, 4.16 short shuttle, 28 reps
Stacy is Finkle! Finkle is Martin! Martin is Einhorn! Wait, what?
Read more in 25 Mysteries Solved to Help You Draft a Better Team.