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The Handcuffing Myth

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Postby Dazedncnfz » Fri Jul 25, 2003 9:40 am

This is the first year that I have tried it...i took C-mart in rd 2 and later on got Jordan...i think its worth it if you have a deep roster and you now the player who is backing up the starter is set to take of say LT or Ricky I wouldnt bother ....Faulk, C-mart I think you almost have to do it....IMO

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Postby Trainer of Dolphins » Fri Jul 25, 2003 9:59 am

I only think its worht it if the player would be a good player if he started. Like Johnson and Lamont Jordan are worth it, but thats about it. Maybe Gordon
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Postby springfield atoms » Fri Jul 25, 2003 9:59 am

a good 'strategy' if you will is to never tie yourself to just one strategy.

i think that there are some players that it makes sense to do.

for example, in a keeper league one guy was weak at rb....emmitt smith and curtis martin are his starters and his only backup going into the season is correll buckhalter.

i recommended he trade for marcell shipp....not so much to ensure smith against injury, but because i think that shipp might wind up winning the job over the course of the season.

i had also suggested jordan to the guy, but i told him at some point, he does not want to tie up four of his roster spots on what could be at most two jobs.

i drafted duece mccallister as a rookie to back up ricky williams, and now that i have williams, faulk and mccallister that has worked out pretty well.

now, of those three, i have CONSIDERED lamar gordon and made on offseason trade for robert edwards (who i will likely cut by our cutdown day), but going into the season i would rather pick up a backup to another nfl RB who i think is either more injury prone or has a shakier hold on the job.
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Postby hwaterboys » Fri Jul 25, 2003 10:29 am

I have benifitted from handcuffing and also been hurt by handcuffing.
two years ago when faulk got hurt I had handcuffed canidate to him. As many of you probably remember canidate put up almost faulk like numbers. That year I benefitted greatly.
Last year I had canidate as faulks backup and was burnt.

I think that handcuffing is a good theory IF it is done in the last couple of rounds in the draft. I don't feel bad at all handcuffing when others are picking up the likes of jamel white, justin watson, Kevin Faulk etc what is the chance of those guys doing anything. I think that this article is right on target if you think about handcuffing in the early to middle rounds. However if you can handcuff with your last 2 picks I don't think that you are hurting yourself. The league that I play in is a bigger league also (14 teams) so by the time the last two rounds come by most other owners are stabbing in the dark.
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Postby PaulRosik » Fri Jul 25, 2003 10:54 am

The article makes all good points but I don't believe any good fantasy player is using mid round picks for backups.

Of course you don't take a backup over any for sure starting player. But once the position is down to all backups or players in a committee situation than there is merit to taking the backup for one of your studs.

The fantasy player who takes Ricky William's backup when a starter even the likes of James Stewart or Stacey Mack is available is hurting himself. But chooing William's backup over someone else's backup makes good sense.

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Postby Hawk022499 » Fri Jul 25, 2003 11:10 am

I think it depends on the teams depth chart and your depth in your fantasy roster.

In my league you draft 4 QBs, 6 RBs, 6 WRs. You start 1 QB, 3 RBs, 3WRs. So I have plenty of room for 2 "starter" backups for bye weeks and a handcuff player if needed.

As to the team's depth chart part, if the player your drafting has 2 or 3 average/rookie backups sitting behind them on the depth chart. You 'll never know which is going to start any given week. Thereby your chances of being wrong are quite saignificant. This includes having coaches who change their "favorite flavor" of the week.

I only grab handcuffs if there is a clearcut backup and a coach with some consistancy.
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Postby 9er Fan » Fri Jul 25, 2003 11:46 am

Looks good on paper, but if the author ends up with Kurt Warner, lets see him pass on Marc Bulger.
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Postby Arlo » Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:24 pm

For one thing, backup QBs and backup RBs are completely different issues. In average leagues (non-keeper), I definitely agree that backing up your QB generally isn't a good idea (although there are exceptions, such as when you're using a QB-WR combo strategy).

With RBs, on the other hand, it's not a matter of whether to draft backups, but, as Guttpuppy and hayes mentioned, whether to back up your own players or to grab another team's backups. Assuming all other factors are equal (which they usually aren't :-) ), I think I'd go with the RB backing up another team's starter rather than my own more often than not, but it's a very tough question.

Do the majority of backup RBs wind up being useless? Yes, but so does every other player you'd pick at that point of the draft...

Sure, you can add, say, a second bench WR to your roster, who will definitely put up stats, unlike the backup RB. But what are the odds that WR will wind up helping your team? And even if he does, the improvement over your other WRs will most likely be minimal. If that backup RB pans out, your reward will be much greater, potentially enough to tilt the balance in your league.

Last year, Priest Holmes might have been the clear-cut fantasy MVP, but it was Clinton Portis, a late-round flyer who looked like a backup (at least in relatively early drafts), who wound up being the difference-maker in most leagues. Even in 1999, when Kurt Warner wowed the fantasy world, Olandis Gary wound up being the key to many fantasy titles...
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Postby Vixtor » Fri Jul 25, 2003 9:14 pm

I never did buy the 'handcuff' theory. If a star player goes down, generally a free agent worth is picking up rather than said players backup. At quarterback, in particular.
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Postby Slingblade » Fri Jul 25, 2003 9:18 pm

Vixtor wrote:I never did buy the 'handcuff' theory. If a star player goes down, generally a free agent worth is picking up rather than said players backup. At quarterback, in particular.

whats the deal with your old guy and knownothing dont have something goin on do you?
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