There is no right or wrong way to way to win in dynasty. If the season ends in a championship then every move up to that point can be justified. However, there are strategies which significantly increase your chances at sustained success, and each of these strategies involves maximizing value in different situations. Trading is one of the most important ways of upgrading a roster in dynasty. However, knowing when to hold a player and when to trade a player can be challenging, even for the most diehard owners. The best time to trade a player is when they’re at their maximum value. The next eight articles are going to focus on the Most Valuable Dynasty Asset (MVDA) on each team. For the purposes of the discussion, the values will be based on superflex leagues, where quarterbacks are more important. I’ll take into account consensus rankings as well as average draft position (ADP) data. Identifying these players can help you extract maximum value out of other owners in your league via trades.
Buffalo Bills - Josh Allen, QB
Coming out of Wyoming, Josh Allen was known for being a large human being (6’5”, 237 lb) who could throw the football very far. While far from a finished product, he possessed all the physical tools NFL teams fall in love with. He ended up playing in 12 games in 2018 and became fantasy relevant not because of his big arm, but because of his legs. In 12 games, he had 89 rushes/631 yards/8 TD. If we remove Week 1 (didn’t start) and Week 6 (left with injury), it extrapolates out to 936 yards and 8 touchdowns over 16 games, which are good numbers for most running backs. Allen even had a 3 game stretch last year from Week 12-14 where he racked up 335 yards, breaking a record held by Michael Vick...in his prime. His biggest weakness right now (and it’s a big one) is his passing. He averaged under 200 yards per game and threw only 10 touchdowns to 12 interceptions to go along with 8 fumbles. Still, he’s still only 23 years old, and Buffalo spent the offseason devoting significant resources in free agency and the Draft to fixing the offensive line and surrounding their young quarterback with weapons. Regardless of how you feel about the players they brought in (Cole Beasley, John Brown, Andre Roberts, Frank Gore, T.J. Yeldon, Devin Singletary, Tyler Kroft, Jake Fisher, and Dawson Knox), they should help the young signal-caller, which will only increase his value moving forward.
Miami Dolphins – Josh Rosen, QB
This is probably the least exciting of all of the assets on this list. I’m sure many would have assumed the running back, Kenyan Drake, to be more valuable, but in a superflex Rosen is actually ranked and being drafted higher. The Miami Dolphins are expected to have one of the worst rosters in the entire NFL this upcoming season as they tank towards a franchise quarterback in Tua Tagovailoa/Justin Herbert/Jake Fromm. The thing is...they might already have their quarterback in Rosen. The Cardinals gave up on him after drafting Kyler Murray and the Dolphins were there to pick him up for the cost of their second round pick. He’s still just 22 years old and should have a slightly better offensive line in Miami than he did in Arizona. His age and position make him valuable in a SuperFlex league, but he’s more of a watch-and-wait asset at the moment, which I think says more about the entirety of the Dolphins’ roster than it does about Rosen.
New England Patriots – Sony Michel, RB
Rarely do you talk about the Patriots and Most Valuable Assets without bringing up Tom Brady, but the guy has got to fall off or retire eventually…right? While some may not agree with Sony being the MVDA on the Patriots, it’s hard to argue with what he was able to do as a rookie. In 13 games he amassed 209 rushes/931 yards/6 touchdowns. Removing the game where he got hurt, this extrapolates out to 1212 yards/6 TD. He comes with some lingering injury concerns (knee), and his biggest red flag comes in the passing game where he’s basically an afterthought. He only had 11 targets/7 catches/50 yards/0 touchdowns on the season. The receiving role is largely reserved for James White and to a lesser extent Rex Burkhead. Notably, White has out-snapped Michel in all but one game they’ve played together. Additionally, the Patriots just drafted another running back in Damien Harris, who may cut into Sony’s role moving forward. So why is Michel still the most valuable asset on the Patriots? Because they run the ball so damn much. In 2018, they ran the ball 45.09% of the time, which is the seventh highest percentage in the league and a significant increase from 2017 (40.22%). The fact that they have a fullback on their roster who plays 20-50% of the snaps each week coupled with their stable of running backs in Burkhead/Michel/Harris suggests the Patriots want to continue to run the ball. Michel has already shown in his brief career that he can be successful running the ball for this team.
New York Jets – Le’Veon Bell, RB
The most anticipated fantasy-relevant free agency signing came to fruition when the Jets signed Le’Veon Bell. The former-Steeler sat out all of 2018 in the hopes of signing a lucrative new deal. When Bell last played in 2017, he racked up 321 rushes/1291 yards/9 touchdowns to go with 106 targets/85 catches/655 yards/2 touchdowns. He was an absolute BEAST. In 2017, the Steelers threw the ball on 59.70% of plays and Bell proved to be a do-it-all back who excelled as a receiver. Can we expect the same production in New York? Well, in 2018 the Jets threw the ball on 57.78% of plays and Bell might be the best receiver on the team. The 2017 Steelers ran 80 more plays than the 2018 Jets (an extra 5 plays/game(, which could limit the opportunity . This cough suggest slightly fewer opportunities for Bell in New York. More importantly though, the biggest difference will be the change in offensive line play. In 2018, the Jets ranked 32nd according to footballoutsiders.com based on adjusted line yards, which factors in how well the offensive line blocks for the running back. By comparison, the 2017 Steelers ranked 7th. Le’Veon Bell will still be a volume runner for the Jets, but he may not see the same level of success he did in Pittsburgh barring a major leap in the offensive line play or from the entire offense.