Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

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Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Heraldo » Wed Aug 15, 2012 11:36 am

Okay, I have a theory and I'd like the Razzball Community's take on it.
Some facts for your reference, 10 team H2H Redraft (ESPN 2 RB, 2 WR, 1 Flex) league, 13 week regular season, 3 week playoffs (6 teams make the playoffs, Byes for Division Winners).

Due to waiver priority resetting every week based on the opposite order of the standings, I am considering intentionally losing the first two weeks of the season.

I believe the benefits of having waiver priority week 1 and 2 outweigh the disadvantage of starting in 0-2 hole.
It's a bold strategy, but based on a little research it seems the pick-ups with the biggest full season impact are picked up with the first 4 weeks.
You would have the first shot at a breakout performance in the first two weeks, and you'd also get a slight advantage if a great pick-up pops up in the first 4 weeks because at best your record could be 2-2.

I know that this this will require a great deal of luck and this isn't the best plan for every league, but considering the number of team that make the playoffs, what are your thoughts?

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby metswc » Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:15 pm

It's bold for sure, I assume you'd accompany this with a draft strategy targeting guys like AP, MJD, and Mathews who are all ?'s for the first few weeks. As a side note are tie-breakers point based? That could get tricky in the middle of the pack w/ a 7-6 record

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Cubes10 » Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:58 pm

I would always go for the wins whenever I could get them. You can't predict when players will get injured or when back ups will get opportunities. Someone might break out in week 2 or week 9...I wouldn't risk it.

Who knows, perhaps you lose the first two weeks anyways and will be able to test it out...

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Heraldo » Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:56 pm

That's exactly what I was thinking. Targeting MJD, AP, and Mathews with little concern over their production during Weeks 1 & 2.
And as far as the Tie-Breaker it is "Total Points for", so that would not be in my favor.
I guess it would depend on the perceived strength of my team, I think the stronger I think the team I draft is the more likely I would be to intentionally lose Weeks 1 & 2. Because it would make my team theoretically that much stronger with the waiver wire pick-ups.

I agree that you can't predict wins and that's why I think it's worthwhile to lose initially. To give myself ever chance to manipulate luck onto my side. When you're drafting you're picking "lottery tickets", after Weeks 1 & 2 you should have a better idea of "known quantities" and have a larger (albeit not by much) sample size to draw from.

If anyone else wants to weigh in, please feel free. I'd like to hear if there is something that I'm completely overlooking/ignoring with this idea.

Last edited by Heraldo on Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Jdavidson12 » Wed Aug 15, 2012 10:12 pm

With a 10 team format I think the value of a waiver pick up goes down. The rosters are so shallow that even a guy from the waivers may not have as much of an impact as those "impact players" are making in a normal league. With h2h, part of it comes down to luck. I'd go for the wins, try to get a bye, and who knows, maybe you'll lose anyway. I wouldn't try to lose though. Also, RB is very shallow this year. If you didn't have two quality starters I may reconsider this theory...have you drafted yet? What does your team look like?
10 Team Roto HR, RBI, Runs, SB, AVG, W, SV, K, WHIP, ERA.
C Castro
C Arencibia
1B Goldy
2B Brandon Phillips
SS Rutledge
3B Zimmerman
OF Mcchutchen
OF Joyce
OF Markakis
OF Pence
OF Austin Jackson
MI Kendrick
CI Encarnacion
Bench: Frazier, Rajai Davis, Alcides Escobar, Uggla
Bumgarner, Cashner, Greg Holland, League, Sergio Romo, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Huston Street, Moore, Milone, Uehara,Kluber

* This was just the roster position for the day I changed my signature.

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Lucc » Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:01 am

I've done this, and have this done to me, I can say in a 12 team league with 6 bench spots, it has proven to work. The key really is an injury. Nothing worse than some asshole on autodraft who gets to grab the key Free Agent Skill player because someone got hurt.
13 Tm Mixed 11 Major 3 Minor Keeper "Midnight Crazies" (Est. 2003, 2014 Champion, 2015 runner up)
1B Abreu, Jose (Keeper) (trade jones, Lester, Joe Ross & Brantley)
2B Altuve, Jose (Keeper)
3B Frazier, Todd (Keeper)
SS Bogaerts, Xander (Keeper)
CI Donaldson, Josh (Keeper)
OF McCutchen, Andrew (Keeper)
OF Cespedes, Yoenis (keeper) (trade puig)
OF Grichuk, Randal (Keeper)

P Bumgarner, Madison (keeper)
P Archer, Chris (Keeper)
P Rodon, Carlos (Keeper)

Minor - David Dahl
Minor - Max Kepler
Minor - Sean Manaea

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby A Hill O' Beans » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:48 am

So after you intentionally lose week 1 there will be 4 other teams with the same record as you. So unless you are lucky and have priority via tiebreaker, or there are 4 or 5 great WW pickups available I don't see how this helps you enough to justify intentionally losing.

Even after intentionally losing week 2 there could still be 2 or 3 other teams with the same record as you, so again unless there are multiple great WW pickups, you may still be out of luck.

What is the tiebreaker for WW priority when 2 teams have the same record? Unless you can guarantee you are going to win this tiebreaker and get the first waiver priority, I don't think it's really worth it. An interesting idea though.

(RCL Champions League) My Mustache Has A Mustache
C - Ramos
1B - Goldy
2B - Kinsler
3B - Pedro
SS - Zobrist
MI - Rendon
CI - Napoli
OF - Ellsbury, Victorino, A.Jackson, Cruz, C.Carter
UT - Sandoval
BE - A.Guerrero
SP - Yu, MadBum, Dickey, Haren, Buchholz, C.Martinez
RP - Rosenthal, Uehara, C.Janssen, Hawkins, Herrera

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Heraldo » Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:16 pm

I didn't consider the relative impact of a free agent considering the shallowness of the league. I was only considering "worst/best" case scenarios (Cam Newton '11 or Jamaal Charles '11) in which having waiver priority would be advantageous. (Breakout or Injury would make their pick-up advantageous). Draft is in 2 weeks. I'll post my team then to discuss the viability of it further.

My league is 10-Team, 6 bench spots (should have included that). So shallower than you league. And your example (injury replacement picked up by Waiver Priority #1) happened in my league last year, is what originally got me thinking (+ the Cam Newton pick-up). The asshole would be me in this case, but I would not have auto-drafted.

@A Hill O' Beans
Good point, I looked the tiebreaker up. The Tiebreaker for WW pic-ups according to ESPN's website "The last place team (with the fewest total points), will have the highest waiver priority ("1") each week during the season. " I would guarantee this the first week by either leaving a spot or two empty intentionally or forgetting to set my lineup all together. And I would be set for the remainder of the year to have the best waiver priority of anyone with my record because I'd be a week without any points.

After researching the tie-breaker (fewest total points), I think intentionally losing at least Week 1 sets your team up to have great WW positioning for the rest of the season. Because if there are any injuries/breakouts in the first couple weeks (you are prepared) and even later in the season you will have better priority than anyone with your record. And hopefully, if you are struck by in an injury later in the season this initial "loss" helps you get the replacement because the people better in priority don't care at this point in the season or your competitors that might take the replacement player to spite you (or for the betterment of their team) have worse priority.

Originally, I thought the determining factor for Waiver Priority (amongst those with the same record) was point differential that week, which is what originally drove me to consider losing the first 2 weeks. But considering the "total points" tie-breaker, losing Week 1 has long term benefits/drawbacks that would extend the entire season. However, tiebreaker at the end of the season tied at 6-7 or 7-6, "Total Points for" would work against you.

So I'm definitely going to intentionally lose Week 1, now the hard part will be "selling" it (Which is more believable, emptying my roster and just "forgot" to adjust it? I felt bad for the dude I was playing against and wanted to give him at least "one" win for the season? The options are endless).

Still unsure about Week 2, though.
Last edited by Heraldo on Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:46 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby AceUpMySleeve » Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:24 pm

I don't like the strategy. But If youre set on doing it in week one, just bench your QB minutes before his game starts. And put one of your "flier" picks in your flex.

You can claim the QB was an accident, and you were trying to hit a homerun with your flex. You will be almost certain to lose without a QB, but you won't have to sacrifice those important tie breaker points for later in the season.

I already can't wait for football to start. Now I want it to be over to see how this worked out for you.

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Re: Genius or Crazy? (Intentionally Losing the First 2 Weeks)

Postby Heraldo » Mon Sep 03, 2012 9:39 am

So, we finally drafted, here's my team (10 Team Redraft League, 9th Pick):

QB Eli Manning, NYG QB
RB Maurice Jones-Drew, Jac RB
RB Marshawn Lynch, Sea RB
RB/WR Doug Martin, TB RB
WR Roddy White, Atl WR
WR A.J. Green, Cin WR
TE Jacob Tamme, Den TE
D/ST Bills D/ST D/ST
K Greg Zuerlein, StL K
Bench Antonio Brown, Pit WR
Bench Kenny Britt, Ten WR
Bench Robert Griffin III, Wsh QB
Bench Ryan Williams, Ari RB
Bench Denarius Moore, Oak WR
Bench Rashad Jennings, Jac RB
Bench LeGarrette Blount, TB RB

With Week 1 two days away, I am still going forward with losing. I have enough confidence in my team that it will be able to win that I want to lose for the benefit of my waiver wire position. As @AceUpMySleeve suggested, I will bench my QB, I also plan to leave MJD/Jennings both on the bench saying I couldn't determine who I wanted to play. And think I may leave out Doug Martin as well. Now, the difficulty in selling this is the Wednesday night game. Forgetting to put in Eli is one thing, but to not even play RG3 will come off as plain idiotic, but I guess I'll just have to deal with it.

Beyond that my only concern is that my irrational thinking that my team is SO GOOD that I will not have a lowest score. Because I think the key to this strategy succeeding is that I score some points (in the 50 point range), so as to get last place, but not completely sacrifice the end of year total points.

Do you think my team is capable of winning (even if I lose Week 1)? Does this strategy have any chance of succeeding? Am I genius or crazy?
Last edited by Heraldo on Tue Sep 04, 2012 9:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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