The rights and wrongs of fantasy trading

On October 4, 2012

Sometimes fantasy players are like your new workout program or a new girlfriend. You tried it out for a little bit, but who are you kidding? You wanted three-day results, and nothing special has happened. Production is low, and they haven't brought you a lot of pleasure yet. You're pretty sure there are other good options out there. This is when you know you're ready for a fantasy trade.

There were a couple words that came out of my mouth last Monday night that are probably frowned upon in most countries. I was forced to sit and watch Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo blow it - not only for America's team, but also for three of my fantasy teams. It's performances like this one that can cause fantasy owners to give up on players.

So whether you're ready to dump nuisances like Romo or you just want to snag some of the blooming players out there, you're going to need these things in mind when making a trade.

Rip your opponent off

It's a basic concept really. Your aim in a trade should be to not only gain, but also ensure the other party loses. This usually will take some sweet-talking. It's also best to target the new guy. Here are two ways to rip someone off.

The first is what I call stat-marketing. It's still early enough in the season to do this. Take a guy who is clearly out-performing his abilities. A good example is Cardinals wide receiver Andre Roberts. He is leading the league with four touchdown receptions. Point this fact out to your friend and tell him you would be willing to take the Lions' superstar receiver Calvin Johnson, who has only scored once, off his hands. Pretty soon this Roberts guy will be on the practice squad, and Johnson will set the record for most TDs.

The second principle is what I call the Green Panda. The name has no significance, but the concept is simple. Pick up somebody who had an above-average previous week. Then work a trade with the league noob where you both trade two players. Be sure one of the guys you give away is the scrub you just picked up. You will be sure to get something for almost nothing, kind of like fourth grade when you found a peanut butter sandwich in the hallway and traded it to your friend for his Oreos.

Avoid threesomes

Like my mama used to always say: one at a time. Of course, she was talking about the pancakes I was eating, but this philosophy holds true for trades. Getting three mediocre players does not make it OK to give away your best player. Believe me, a couple years ago I traded MLB star Ryan Howard for five other players. My team was terrible and barely broke even on the trade. So even though Robin Sparkles says two beavers are better than one, they're not.

Trading is one of the keys to winning fantasy football, but only if executed correctly. Timing is everything and deception is a good weapon.

Flex plays for Week 5:

Bye weeks are here, and you may find yourself stuck. Look out for some of these guys.

Jackie Battle (RB/SD), Confidence Rating: 9/10

This guy has to be picked up in all leagues. Former starter Ryan Mathews was benched last week and it is extremely unclear if he's going to get a lot of touches anymore. Battle runs like a moose, and New Orleans (his next opponent) has given up the most fantasy points to running backs this year.

Kyle Rudolph (TE/MIN), C.R. 7/10

Here's a guy who is owned in just over half of fantasy leagues. His matchup this week against the Titans' weak front seven has touchdown written all over it. A couple good tight ends are on byes this week. This guy is a good pickup.

Any San Francisco Receiver, C.R. 7/10

San Fran is up against the Bills this week, and honestly I don't know if the Bills really have a secondary. Again, these guys are not owned in all fantasy leagues, and it is common to see them on the bench. But if you do have any of them or they are available, they have a good chance of getting a score this week and giving you that extra boost.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis, C.R.  2/10

If you can avoid him this week, please do. Miami actually has the fifth-best run defense in the league, despite the Dolphins' other woes.


Eliminator/Survival Pick:Green Bay over Indy

Bye Teams this week:Cowboys, Lions, Raiders, Bucs



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