The Green Light: Take Advantage Of Those Trade Offers

By @GOATdistrict

Posted May 16, 2017


There is nothing more frustrating then spending time putting together a trade offer, thinking it through, tweeking it; losing sleep over it, then finally deciding to click submit, only to have to wait…and wait…and after three days, finally your email notification goes off; there it is, a simple “Your Trade Offer to Butt Bowl Raiders has been Rejected”. No Counter Offer, no follow up email saying “hey, I am not really into that player, but I would consider if you included this player…” Give me something…just something, give me SOMETHING!!!

Take advantage of the situation

One of the biggest mistakes I think dynasty owners make over and over is not taking advantage of being offered a trade.  It’s easy to just look at the offer and click Reject right away without batting an eye. Especially when the other owner is not offering players you desire. Why waist our time taking a closer look at a trade offer if we’re just not interested in what’s being offered?  I’ll tell you why; they are obviously interested in a player or players on your roster, and/or they are trying to move players from their roster.  Therefore, this is the perfect time to spark up some real trade talk and improve your roster.  WARNING!: Unless the other owner is only targeting players on your roster that you just don’t want to move AND offering players that you simply don’t want, there is always a way to take advantage of the situation.

The Green Light

Let’s face it, nothing feels better then completing a trade for a player your really wanted.  Just clicking refresh on your Team page and getting to see his name on your roster is sheer Nirvana in itself.  That’s why when you get a trade offer, see it as a green light to spark up some trade talk and intend on getting a deal done that will improve your roster.  The beauty of dynasty is that it goes all year around, however not all leagues allow trading all year around, and even more, not all owners are always in trade mode.  That email you get in your inbox with a trade offer is basically a traffic light switching to green, so buckle up and get ready to negotiate.

Analysis of your opponent’s roster

The first thing to do when you receive a trade offer is go to the team that is offering the trade and look at their roster.  Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are their roster weaknesses?
  • What are their roster strengths?
  • What positional needs do they have?
  • Do they have draft picks?  Do they look like they are collecting draft picks?  Or trading them away?
  • What players on their roster would I be interested in acquiring?
  • If you had his team, who would you want from your roster?

The reason you want to gather this information before moving forward, is to be strategic in your counter-offer.  Meaning, you don’t want to just throw out an offer with some dud from your bench in exchange for one of their studs.  You will just shorten the process and maybe scare your fish away.  The point here is to put yourself in the other owner’s shoes, and look at the situation from his perspective.  Try to figure out who he would want to trade for based on his roster, and how a deal could benefit his team, while getting you what you want and shipping out players you intended on moving.

Analysis of your own roster

Next, go back to your own roster and look for your weaknesses, strengths, positional needs and draft pick situation.  If you obsess over your dynasty teams like I do, you will surely already know this information; if you don’t for whatever reason, take a few minutes to make an analysis.  It is crucial to be honest with yourself about the strength of your team and value of your players.  What we are trying to figure out here is can we make our team better with the players we’ve identified as trade targets from our opponents roster.  If the answer is yes, then we can move forward with putting an offer together.

The Counter-Offer

In my experience, the closer to a fair trade you can make your counter-offer, the higher the chance it gets accepted.  Ideally, you want to send your second-best offer right off the bat; to show the other owner that you are serious about completing a deal and not just sending offers to kill time.  But at the same time, it gives you room to negotiate if the don’t like that first counter, while not turning them off with a super lopsided offer in your favor.  Again, be honest with yourself when evaluating both rosters and assigning values to individual players.

Completing a Trade

With two decades of negotiating dynasty trades, I’ve learned some valuable lessons along the way that I find help me make the right decision when trying to complete a trade:

  1. Don’t accept a deal you are not excited about:  whenever I am not excited about getting a specific deal done, I usually end up regretting it afterwards.  The whole point of making a trade is to feel good about it, not live in regret kicking yourself.  That leads to my next rule…
  2. Don’t rush the deal: sometimes we feel like if we don’t get the deal done now, we won’t get another opportunity to move a certain player, or acquire a player we really want.  This is true especially just before your league’s trade deadline. If you don’t feel like you’re getting fair value, or at least what you want out of the deal, then keep negotiating.  There is always another deal around the corner.   What’s that saying, “if it’s meant to be…”
  3. Don’t be afraid to over-pay for your guy:  Sometimes it’s ok to over pay if it means getting your guy.  I’m not saying give the kitchen sink, but sometimes you will have to over pay to get the player you want, and that’s ok.  Don’t feel like you always have to “win” the trade.  Is that even quantifiable?  The owner who wins the trade in my opinion, is the owner who get’s what he/she needs or wants to improve his/her roster. Which leads to my next rule…
  4. Get guys that you like on your team: I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times on all the fantasy football podcasts our there, but fantasy football, especially dynasty, is way more fun when you own players that you actually like and believe in.  Don’t just go after players or make deals because some trade calculator tells you in it’s in your favor, or because it’s what the masses are doing…
  5. Make your own decisions: Yes it’s fun to talk fantasy with friends and people on Twitter, but at the end of the day, you love fantasy football if you’re playing dynasty.  And if you’re playing dynasty, you try to listen to as many hours of podcasts as possible, read as many articles online as you can and watch every second of NFL anything you can; the NFL Draft, NFL Combine, Pre-season, MNF, TNF, SNF, NFLN…you catch my drift.  Point is, you educate yourself tones and learn so much about each player, that you should trust your own opinions and make your own decisions.  If you believe in a guy, trade for him; if you think a player is going to regress, trade him away.   Just don’t ignore your own voice, to listen only to others.  It’ll make winning that title even sweeter.

Hopefully next time you get a trade offer in your inbox, you’ll think twice before simply clicking “reject”.

Happy Trading!



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