Trade Priorities | Round 8

We’re a third of the way through the season; it’s time to discuss the trade priorities as we head into another round of football.

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Done the job?

One of the better midprice players this season has been new Essendon recruit Will Setterfield. The former Carlton & GWS Giants midfielder has thrived with the opportunity and continuity provided to him at Essendon. Over the first few rounds of the year, he was putting up premium scores and was understandably someone that people traded into. However, off the back of a score in the 50’s last weekend, the question of the format needs to be asked, is it time to trade him?

You can hold him, but it’ll likely come with some immediate cash drop probability. We saw a slide in his price last week. Barring a return to the 120+ scores, he’ll fall again. He’s got a breakeven of 126 in AFLFantasy + DreamTeam and 117 in SuperCoach. He’s shown history this year that he’s got the capability of scoring this and more. But on the recent trend, the probability of having him kickstart his cash generation again. Therefore, the options are either tap out now while he’s arguably at his pricing peak or hold onto him until the round fourteen bye.

There are still plenty of other midprice options that can continue to stick around in our teams. James WorpelFinn Callagahan and Darcy Macpherson still have some cash to make. So there’s no need to consider moving any of these players on.

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Ripe for the picking

At the start of the season, most coaches would say that their ideal completed team would include Jack Steele and Jack Sinclair. For various reasons, both have yet to be at their previous peak. But after last weekend, they reminded coaches of all formats of their potential. The benefit of some early season challenges means we can pick up both at some value based on proven performances. They might not be bargains, but they are under compared to what you could have paid for entering the season.

I’ve been a big fan of Andrew Brayshaw, but his start to the season has been underwhelming. Thankfully, there’s a legitimate reason for it. He’s come out and shared that he’d been battling a knee issue during the preseason and early in the year. Thankfully, he’s now pain-free & believes he’s turned the corner. Last year he averaged over 110 across the formats, and if you believe his injury was the primary reason for a lower-scoring start to the season, then he’s a genuine option to be a buy low.

On the latest strategy roundtable, we discussed Jayden Short. If he had DEF status now, he’d be more highly discussed. But while he is only a MID, only he’s getting slept on. In the past two weeks, he’s scored 117 & 123 in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam plus 130 & 94 in SuperCoach. Barring a disaster, he’s certain to get DEF status heading into round 12, but even if he doesn’t, he’s got a plumb fixture and role that makes him a strong option now that, at worst, is moved off at his bye round. At best, he could match it with the scoring of Jordan Dawson, Tom Stewart, Nick Daicos, James Sicily and Jack Sinclair.

It’s an AFLFantasy play with high risk but has a huge potential reward. Does Aaron Hall have the potential to average 120+ from now until his round 15 byes? The answer should be yes! Equally, if I asked you who has the historical narrative of going down injured in the first five minutes of a game and cost you, he’d also make a list. Considering him as an option isn’t for a team with a strong rank position; rather, it’s a team looking to make up some ground and go unique. He’s got the capacity to be the #1 scorer in the game. Additionally, he’s about $50,000 more expensive than Will Day but has potential 30+ points on him every week. It’s not for everyone, but he’s ripe for the picking for the right coach.

Don’t lose focus

Have you ever heard the saying of short-term pain for long-term gain? Essentially, it’s absorbing the pain of now so that the long-term benefit is greater. It’s so easy to sacrifice our future for the immediate hit of an upgrade-heavy cadence that’s not thought out. Yes, we need to be aggressive, and yes, we need to maximise opportunities at present, but not be careless. Successful coaches across the formats do it by trading with a short, medium and long-term planning view.

Don’t make trades this week in the hope you’ll be able to do moves the following week. Each trade you make should support the next. The moves you make should also create a pathway for the following weeks. Know what you’re doing, the what, then when, the how and the why.

Making an upgrade and doing many quickly is one of the greater sensations for fantasy footy, but doing them carelessly, without planning or narrative, could end up being the thing that stalls the longer-term growth of your team.

For example. Two weeks ago, many thought Kade Chandler was a trade-out consideration. They did this by looking at the price point and breakeven and decided to move him on. Yes, they got a premium ‘early’, but they still need to hold onto a guy with proven 100-scoring potential, a remarkable fixture and the perfect parachute plan with where his bye-round sits. He should never have been a consideration to trade, but rather be the perfect runner to the bye. It’s not a hindsight commentary; it was evident then (and articulated by us on a podcast), but nobody should’ve considered moving him on then. However, in people’s eagerness to upgrade, they took immediate gratification and lost sight of the long-term best interests of their team.

The rank isn’t real

You might be looking at your ranking and not be thrilled with what you see. But the reality of where you’re placed (for better or worse) could be the net result of only 5-10 variables and decisions over the past seven weeks.

If you play AFLFantasy, heading into round one, plenty of coaches were tossing up one defensive spot between either Nick Daicos or Hayden Young. There was less than $10,000 between them, and yet now there are 232 points and over $150k the difference. For SuperCoach, some opted to start Sean Darcy instead of Tim English because they thought the $20k price gap would be negligible. However, after eight weeks, both have been good picks, averaging over 110. However, English averages 20 points more per game and outscored him by over 135 points.

It can also come through your captaincy selections. Last week alone, there was over a 55-point differential between placing the captaincy on either Rowan Marshall or Nick Daicos. Getting on the right side of this call weekly can accumulate a significant difference. Think back to round one; Kade Chandler scores a 104 in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam and 93 in SuperCoach. If you had him, let alone on the field, it significantly changed the outcome of your scores and possible cash generation.

And lastly, there is the element of luck. Or should I say bad luck? Two weeks ago, trading into Touk Miller was a strong play. But unfortunately, he got injured, forcing coaches to make an additional trade and find themselves not just with a poor score but a forced change to their upgrade cadence.

The point is your ranked where you are only off the back of a few decisions. Good coaches with good strategies, cash generation and clear thinking will excel over the coming weeks as we head into the multi-bye rounds. It will only be after the byes that we’ll get a true picture of where coaches are ranked and how well they’ve played the game.

Have you got a bad rank? Be encouraged; you might be closer to a good outcome post byes. Flying and ranked high? That’s excellent, but don’t get smug; you’ve got a pack of good coaches behind you planning and creating an all-mighty push.