In Dynasty Owner, understanding where you need to spend the most significant portion of your salary cap during drafts (and with trades/waiver acquisitions) is by far the most important element of the overall strategy. With normal fantasy football leagues, you simply draft best available talent at whatever draft slot you have, especially in the early rounds.
Dynasty Owner is much more in-depth for the more advanced fantasy players. Not only do you want to draft for elite production but you need to consider salary, length of contract and roster make up. If you spend big on your QB and draft an elite stud WR, chances are you'll have to look for cheap or young talent at RB or TE to stay under the cap.
So this post looks at positional value, using our primary measure of effectiveness, $Dynasty Dollars per Point or $DD/PT. Simply stated, it's how expensive is each fantasy point from a player or position. The lower the $DD/PT the better.
First, let's take a look at the top 10 scorers at each position, and the average salary for that group of 10 for each position. This will help give us a 20,000 FT view of the positional effectiveness.
Quarterbacks (Avg points per game): Average Salary | $Dollar cost per point
- Andrew Luck (38): $5.5mm yearly | $145k per point
- Peyton Manning (36): $19.2mm yearly | $533k per point
- Aaron Rodgers (30ppg): $22mm yearly | $733k per point
- Drew Brees (30): $20mm yearly | $666k per point
- Philip Rivers (29): $15.3mm yearly | $528k per point
- Russell Wilson (29): $750k yearly | $25k per point
- Carson Palmer (28): $8mm yearly | $285k per point
- Ben Roethlisberger (27): $14.6mm yearly | $540k per point
- Jay Cutler (26): $18mm yearly | $692k per point
- Tom Brady (26): $14.1mm yearly | $542k per point
Total QB $ per point Avg: $470k per point
Looking at the top 10 QBs, you can expect to pay close to $500k for top-10 production at the position in Dyansty Owner. And that number should be considerably higher next year as two of the guys bringing that number down are Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson, both on the final year of their rookie contracts and expected to be amongst the highest paid QBs in the league.
- Demarco Murray (29): $743k yearly | $25k per point
- Arian Foster (28): $8.7mm yearly | $310k per point
- Matt Forte (26): $7.6mm yearly | $292k per point
- LeVeon Bell (21): $1mm yearly | $48k per point
- Mark Ingram (18): $1.8mm yearly | $103k per point
- Marshawn Lynch (17): $7.5mm yearly | $445k per point
- Ahmad Bradshaw (17): $850k yearly | $50k per point
- Gio Bernard (16): $1.3MM yearly | $82k per point
- Andre Ellington (16): $565k yearly | $35k per point
- Branden Oliver (16): $465k yearly | $29k per point
Total RB $ per point Avg: $142k per point
You can see that there is a clear cut difference in the average price you need to pay for an Elite RB this year versus an elite QB. Part of that is variance as this has just been a very strange year for the top Tier of running backs. From Adrien Petersen getting suspended to McCoy and Charles inexplicably not on this list, the only guys in the consensus top of the rankings who are performing at par is Matt Forte and Arian Foster. Most of the other elite RBs this year are young RBs still on rookie contracts establishing themselves this year. Next year, in redraft leagues, it will be interesting to see if owners decide to spend high picks on elite RBs on rookie deals like LeVeon Bell or spend at the quarterback position to give themselves the best chance at a top 10 QB.
At WR, because there are so many that are used in fantasy rosters we will do the same production average using the top 20 WRs for a more representative sample size.
- Antonio Brown (26): $8.2mm / yearly | $315k per point
- Deymarius Thomas (24): $2.8mm / yearly | $117k per point
- Golden Tate (21): $6.2mm / yearly | $295k per point
- Jeremy Maclin (21): $5.2mm / yearly | $247k per point
- TY Hilton (20): $660k / yearly | $33k per point
- Jordy Nelson (20): $9.8mm / yearly | $490k per point
- Emmanuel Sanders (19): $5mm / yearly | $250k per point
- Randall Cobb (18): $800k / yearly | $43k per point
- Julio Jones (18): $4mm / yearly | $222k per point
- Dez Bryant (17): $2.7mm / yearly | $150k per point
- Mohammed Sanu (17): $680k / yearly | $40k per point
- Steve Smith Jr. (16): $3.5mm / yearly | $205k per point
- Sammy Watkins (16): $4.9mm / yearly | $305k per point
- DeSean Jackson (15): $6mm / yearly | $400k per point
- Kelvin Benjamin (15): $2mm / yearly | $133k per point
- Calvin Johnson (15): $16mm / yearly | $1mm per point
- Alshon Jeffery (14): $1.2mm / yearly | $85k per point
- Mike Wallace (14): $12mm / yearly | $850k per point
- Brandin Cooks (14): $2mm / yearly | $143k per point
- James Jones (14): $3.3mm / yearly | $238k per point
Total WR $ per point Avg: $282k per point
Elite WRs slot right in between QBs and RBs in terms of how much each point will cost you. What is most notable here, however, is how there is a lot more bust potential with WR than say QB. Take Calvin Johnson for instance, who has obviously been hurt for a lot of this season. But when he has played, every point he scores costs $1MM dollars each week as a function of his contract. That's absorbable if you were fortunate to land Russell Wilson or Andrew Luck as your QB (this year) but not sustainable if you have high priced options at QB or RB. In general, we think the best approach is to load up on QBs first, then draft talented WRs on rookie contracts as there are plenty of them. And missing on a high-priced WR can be really damaging, moreso than any other position.
TE Rankings (Avg PPG)
- Rob Gronkowski (18): $9mm / yearly | $500k per point
- Martellus Bennett (17): $5.1mm / yearly | $300k per point
- Julius Thomas (16): $420k / yearly | $26k per point
- Antonio Gates (16): $7.3mm / yearly | $450k per point
- Greg Olsen (15): $4.5mm / yearly | $300k per point
- Jimmy Graham (14): $10mm / yearly | $715k per point
- Delanie Walker (14): $4.3mm / yearly | $307k per point
- Larry Donnell (12): $450k / yearly | $37k per point
- Travis Kelce (11): $780k / yearly | $70k per point
- Dwayne Allen (11): $770k / yearly | $70k per point
Total TE $ per point Avg: $277k per point
With tight ends, as we alluded to in our positional previews, there was a clear cut distinction between Julius Thomas (and at the time Jordan Cameron) and the other TEs. Even the 2 elite TEs Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham were in Tier 2 because their salaries were so much higher than the aforementioned Thomas and Cameron. We always advise waiting to draft TEs, because as you can see the guys on this list, especially the cheaper options near the end, could have been had in the late rounds or in free agency after the draft. This year proved that theory to be true - TE is the easiest source to get cheap and elite production.
At the halfway mark of this season, the main takeaways in Dynasty Owner from a positional cost effectiveness standpoint are that Running Backs are the cheapest source of elite production, mostly due to the fact that so many low-paid backups end up getting significant playing time and the turnover at the position is extremely high. This means in Dynasty Owner, unlike most standard fantasy leagues, the first round of drafts should not be dominated by Running Backs. On the contrary, elite Qbs and WRs who are proven and still on rookie contracts should be the top of re-draft lists each year.