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Sean Mooney

Against FF Common Thinking

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There are a lot of things that are said year in and year out with fantasy football that become common ways of thinking. Are there any that you don't listen to?

 

For me, I've never been a "draft your handcuff" guy. To me there is a reason that someone is a backup in the NFL. Very seldom is that reason "they are just behind a great running back." Most of the time the reason is that they just are not very good. Case in point this week- Mattison had the absolute best matchup he could have just about and the Vikings were shying away from using him early and then got completely rocked in game script. Form there Mattison in the one week you needed him- gave you negative value almost.

Now you will have a guy like Mike Davis occasionally that goes nuts but he is the exception and not the rule.

I just never see the point of saying, "Well I have Cook but I want to make sure I have Mattison just in case Cook goes down." I am far more interested in either finding a dude in the backfield mix somewhere- like a Swift or Lindsey- or even swiping someone else's handcuff late in the draft. To me I want to be involved in as many backfields as possible. So if I'm carrying 5 RBs I want to be in 5 backfields. If I'm in 4 it slightly cuts down my ability to do things.

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I try to get the backup for my best player for the first five weeks. After that it likely does not matter and I will drop them for a better player or drop and pick them up again if I can swing it later for insurance. If one loses their best player and someone gets the backup early, I figure the odds of making the playoffs get extremely difficult. Like losing Kamara and no Latavius. But just one player. I never keep more than one backup.

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I think the it depends on the player and the team offense. Some handcuffs are obvious. It's the o-line and the team that really produce the numbers, and any average back can step in and perform. (Think 2015 Steelers Bell went down and D Williams stepped in and went nuts). Other times, there's no point as it's the player and not the team and the backup just doesn't have the talent. 

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I'm not a big handcuffer either.  I'd rather have another legitimate RB who can get me points in any given week, not just if one of my other guys goes down.

But to add to the topic, I'll throw in the practice of "stacking" a QB and a WR from the same NFL team.  Some players love to get the "double-dip" when their QB throws a TD to their WR.

But the fact is that having a QB and a WR from the same team tends to make your team scoring much more inconsistent--prone to huge big days and horrible clunkers--and will probably cost your team at least one win over the course of the season, compared to similar QBs and WRs from independent teams.

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The elf. 

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Not saying it's right or wrong to handcuff, but the last time I did, it was Michael Turner (LT's back up in San Diego) 2007

 

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50 minutes ago, easilyscan said:

Not saying it's right or wrong to handcuff, but the last time I did, it was Michael Turner (LT's back up in San Diego) 2007

 

 

Again- I think that's the exception rather than the rule

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21 minutes ago, Sean Mooney said:

 

Again- I think that's the exception rather than the rule

Right

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This article from Fantasy Pros is kind of what I am talking about as they discuss handcuffing a guy because they are in decline:

 

Quote

 

I would say that this is the Chicago Bears back in 2015. RB Matt Forte was an established player, but he was nearing the end of his Bears career and he was coming off a season where he averaged only 3.9 yards per carry in 2014. The Bears took Michigan State RB Jeremy Langford in the fourth round and it seemed likely that Langford would be given time that year, but it was not going to happen early in the season. Langford had only 15 carries in the first six games, before he had 12 carries in Week 7 against the Minnesota Vikings. He would see at least 10 carries until Week 17, carving out a timeshare with a declining star player. Handcuffing Forte with Langford helped fantasy owners that were worried about Forte continuing to decline and helped save the season. It did come with a heavy price though as Langford was unplayable for the first six games of that season.

 

 

Okay but I can't start both guys so it didn't really help me. 

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2 hours ago, weepaws said:

The elf. 

And here I thought you didn't respect me.

Yes, the Elf will lead you against the grain of common FF thinking.  That's how you get to be the one winner among the 11 common thinkers.

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I never ever look to handcuff, but in a non ppr 14 team league sometimes that’s might be ones best move, I don’t currently have a handcuff.  

But I don’ draft qbs and tes before round 8.  

 

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51 minutes ago, AxeElf said:

And here I thought you didn't respect me.

Yes, the Elf will lead you against the grain of common FF thinking.  That's how you get to be the one winner among the 11 common thinkers.

I respect everyone that post on this site.  

Everyone that post on this site  was created by God.  

I hope no one ever thanks that I don’t respect them. 

Thanks. 

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I don't ever handcuff, and if I do happen to have two RBs on the same team like that, it's by chance.

This season, I have Kamara and L Murray. It just turned out that way. Later in my draft Murray was there and I thought he was the best available RB. In certain drastic situations, I could even see starting both of them at once. Murray has a couple of huge games a season, and if Kamara is out, he's a good bet to have a solid game.

I think the handcuff thing though, comes from faulty logic many people tend to have about football in general. That is that a team's running game is all an offensive line and little to do with the RB. There are plenty of people that seem to think you can plug in your typical high school RB behind a top notch NFL offensive line and get similar results as you would with RBs like Kamara, Zeke, D Cook, etc.  IMO, nothing could be further from the truth. So I don't put a lot into handcuffing RBs. If it's a strong veteran RB like L Murray, then I think it's a good bet, but there are often RBs that nobody has ever heard of that get pushed up near the top of the weekly ranks just because a top RB on the same team is out that week. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn't. I would prefer to get a player that could potentially help me week in and week out, not a guy who is just good on a whim.

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4 hours ago, AxeElf said:

I'm not a big handcuffer either.  I'd rather have another legitimate RB who can get me points in any given week, not just if one of my other guys goes down.

But to add to the topic, I'll throw in the practice of "stacking" a QB and a WR from the same NFL team.  Some players love to get the "double-dip" when their QB throws a TD to their WR.

But the fact is that having a QB and a WR from the same team tends to make your team scoring much more inconsistent--prone to huge big days and horrible clunkers--and will probably cost your team at least one win over the course of the season, compared to similar QBs and WRs from independent teams.

You’re so full of yourself you forget to FACT check that there are 3 consistent winning combos this season. At least you were almost PROBABLY right lol keep on workin it bro

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1 hour ago, nospk said:

You’re so full of yourself you forget to FACT check that there are 3 consistent winning combos this season. At least you were almost PROBABLY right lol keep on workin it bro

I guess you never learned the difference between climate and weather, either, did you...?

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7 hours ago, Sean Mooney said:

This article from Fantasy Pros is kind of what I am talking about as they discuss handcuffing a guy ... 

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You have to find the strategy you are comfortable with. Some have a knack for the wire, some picking wrs  ... There are limits to handcuff strategy but the certainty having the next man up seems to help me more than the alternatives. 
Conventional wisdom is for mass consumption but does not typically lead to excellence.

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So in one of my leagues I have Ekeler/Kelly and Connors. I over offered a bit for Snell and Jackson and no bites  Neither owner has started them once. But in this league everyone hoards rbs so you have to adjust.

Plus if you expect to get in the playoffs you really do want the next guy up if your rb1 or 2 goes out.

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17 hours ago, AxeElf said:

I guess you never learned the difference between climate and weather, either, did you...?

I know what a clown is, AxeClown

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On 10/21/2020 at 11:18 PM, DrG said:

You have to find the strategy you are comfortable with. Some have a knack for the wire, some picking wrs  ... There are limits to handcuff strategy but the certainty having the next man up seems to help me more than the alternatives. 
Conventional wisdom is for mass consumption but does not typically lead to excellence.

Oh absolutely. I just always hear the handcuff thing and I bristle at it. To me if you do enough research you can have legitimate guys in enough spaces to cover for you.

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Yeah I’ve been mixed on handcuffing over the years but I think I’m gonna move away from it.  There’s just too much that has to happen for it to work

-Starter needs to get hurt

-Handcuff has to actually be the guy they give more carries to

-Handcuff has to actually be good

-You have to not have dropped the handcuff for a bye week filler or something, and are also keeping that roster spot that you might have been able to use for a WW pickup  (and another downside is that you now have 2 RB’s with the same bye week)

 

I took a couple years off FF, when was the last handcuff that truly worked out for the majority of the season?  DeAngelo Williams in 2015?  But that was different since Bell was suspended.  Does Kareem Hunt in 2017 count where Ware got injured in preseason?

Handcuffs are often decent for 1 or 2 game fill-ins (such as Ware himself in 2015), but that usually seems to be about it.   Now if those games come at the end of the season and you have managed to hang on to the handcuff that long it may be worthwhile, but what are even some examples of that happening recently?

 

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I guess i'll weigh in on this.

drafting your handcuff can be a good. strategy if the situation is right.   but only if you feel your hancuff would put up decent numbers while your player is out injured.

i'd say generally you are better off drafting another starting calibre RB on another team most times. Even if they are starting on a weaker team.

but in deeper leagues  or teams with 12+ teams.....RB's can be hard to come by once the first 20 or 25 are off the board.

That is when you may wish to look into RB's. who have a chance to break out or RB's who backup players who you own.  

But there are some teams whose. backup RB situation is poor .  other teams have subpar lines and the starter is good enough to overcome and perform with the subpar line, but the backup is not good enough to be productive in this situation.

These are situations to avoid.  all you are doing is. creating a dead roster spot when this is the situation.

whiile i generally dont like committees,  but a committee is a scenario where you can get a player capable of putting up numbers if another member of said committee gets hurt or underperforms.  San Fran is a prime example.  whoever has gotten the start has been okay.  not spectacular but okay.   if you have lost a starter having a player who is ok that you can. plug into your lineup may be your best case scenario.  especially if a second starter is out on a bye.

anyhow,  good luck

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When I first started playing ff back in the late 80es it seemed like a great ideal to me to handcuff, but so often i was left with a player that waisted a spot on my bench, like Canadianfan posted on this site, but that’s a whole different issue. 

And I would hold that player even missing out on taking a f/a that turn out to be more valuable l because I was waiting for that injury to happen to my rb1, and it never did, and it at times would cost me. 

So generally I don’t handcuff.  Unless I can see a rb1b situation l so I could use him as a flex, like with Hunt. 

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Maybe this is just impulsive and due to the year I'm having, but one thing I'm probably going to start going against the grain on is the idea that you can just ignore the QB position before and at the draft because nearly any one or combo of the top 20 QBs will suffice. I've been streaming QBs, with Stafford and Goff being my rostered options, while occasionally picking up an available streamer who has a great matchup. Every week I'm chasing points, and sometimes it's an amount that is nearly impossible to overcome. If you don't have a QB that can go out and carry your team to a win a handful of times a year, and consistently be a top option, I think you're team is probably struggling. I'm not saying I'm going to start drafting QBs  in the early rounds, but I've largely ignored QBs and just waited to see who fell to me, rather than targeting a couple guys and making sure I got at least one or two of them. 

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I draft other team's backups. There have been more than a few times over the years after injuries that I either needed them, or, had a stockpile of RBs that I could trade for other needs.

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1 hour ago, Serenity Now said:

Maybe this is just impulsive and due to the year I'm having, but one thing I'm probably going to start going against the grain on is the idea that you can just ignore the QB position before and at the draft because nearly any one or combo of the top 20 QBs will suffice. I've been streaming QBs, with Stafford and Goff being my rostered options, while occasionally picking up an available streamer who has a great matchup. Every week I'm chasing points, and sometimes it's an amount that is nearly impossible to overcome. If you don't have a QB that can go out and carry your team to a win a handful of times a year, and consistently be a top option, I think you're team is probably struggling. I'm not saying I'm going to start drafting QBs  in the early rounds, but I've largely ignored QBs and just waited to see who fell to me, rather than targeting a couple guys and making sure I got at least one or two of them. 

Goff has been good for me , but I did drop Michel , and picked up Hebert some time back.  No need to draft high with qbs. Sometimes a dead beat on a team is good to keep, if their is no upgrade, but when I read that the Chargers names Hebert their Qb for the rest of this season, I picked him up, right now I have two qbs, so I’ll probably let Goff go if there is a upgrade at wr or rb available, tough pickings right now in a non ppr 14 teamer. Nice thing is , Herbert just had is bye week also. 

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I targeted Edmonds late in my drafts. Not because of the handcuff, but I thought he was better than Drake. I think they both are useful in this offense, but i think Edmonds is very underused. I expected him to be a rb3, with mid rb2 in some shootouts.

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26 minutes ago, jackjohn said:

I targeted Edmonds late in my drafts. Not because of the handcuff, but I thought he was better than Drake. I think they both are useful in this offense, but i think Edmonds is very underused. I expected him to be a rb3, with mid rb2 in some shootouts.

Congrats, I really think that was a great move, I didn’t see Edmonds has a handcuff, more like a Rb1b. 

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After bugging me for 2 years, my friends at work convinced me to play FF in 2005.

I really messed up the draft that 1st year by taking Peyton Manning with the 1st overall pick, & 2 or 3 more top 10 QBs, thinking I could trade them later.

I'm lucky they didn't take me out behind the woodshed :) 

But I learned quickly & managed to finish 3rd.

 

By year 3 (2007) I was so in love with FF that I started another league. 

That was also the 1st year I went 'Against FF Common Thinking'

In researching FF, I saw several articles by 'experts' who said one thing you should always do, is watch who the other teams are drafting.

This way you'll know when the run is beginning on TE's, QB's, etc & know it's time to go after them. 

 

I did the exact opposite, & concentrated solely on my team. Won both leagues. 

It would be foolish to say that I was so successful simply because I ignored the other teams during the draft, but I believe it to be beneficial, at least for me. 

For the skeptics, here's 2007 championship week in 1 of the leagues.

Ironically, the incredible 1-2 punch of Tomlinson & Peterson severely underperformed that day & If I hadn't streamed Jacksonville's D, could have cost me the title.

http://www.imagebam.com/image/8e47281357408896

8e47281357408896.jpg 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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