Now that we are a third of the way into the college season, most teams have a pretty good idea of where they stand. At least on the college side. It may be a bit more difficult with only three weeks of the NFL complete. But you still have a pretty good idea of the direction it’s headed.
If you want to make a run at the college championship in your Campus 2 Canton league, now is the time to pounce. If you are a bit unsure about making an NFL run, a week or two wait wouldn’t be the worst idea. But you may end up missing a college window.
Time To Go for a NCAA Title!
I was at the breaking point in a league this week where I was one of the top college teams, and my NFL team is aging and also starting to suck. I won the NFL title last season, but it was mostly on luck. The right people hitting at the right time.
Let’s break down my NFL and NCAA team, how I attacked this league, and the moves I made to go for broke.
The NFL Team
This particular league is a Dynasty Nerds “staff” league, as most of them work or have worked at the site. Many of us at Campus2Canton have many connections with people who run the Nerds and work there.
My NFL team is limping to a 1-2 start, but sometimes, the writing is on the wall. I could probably have treaded water this year and been in good shape next year. Losing Aaron Rodgers left me with only Mac Jones and Baker Mayfield at QB.
My running backs were Saquon Barkley, Derrick Henry, Josh Jacobs, and Jerome Ford. Next year could have been very ugly in that area. With Henry underperforming and Barkley’s injury, it was getting bleak.
The wide receivers were in decent shape but getting old quickly. Mike Evans, Christian Kirk, and Odell Beckham are the “highlights,” and it drops off quickly. TJ Hockenson mans my tight-end spot, but I have Pat Freiermuth and some solid young options, too.
The NCAA Team
My college team wasn’t a shoo-in by any means, but with a little depth and another stud or two, it’s got the potential to be nasty. I just moved to 3-1, fourth in the standings and fourth in points.
My quarterbacks were in good shape, with Jordan Travis, Spencer Rattler, Jacob Zeno, and John Rhys Plumlee in reserve. I would have liked to have another solid option with all the byes coming up, and I was thinking of targeting one. Dillon Gabriel was my hope.
Running backs were solid, with Jawhar Jordan, LaQuint Allen, Ashton Jeanty, and Cameron Skattebo headlining the depth chart. Again, I was hoping to acquire another stud, as Kevonrian Barnes and Damien Martinez have not been all I hoped for.
For wideouts, I was missing the stud but loved my roster with a bunch of receivers that average about 20 points a game. Will Sheppard, Smoke Harris, Keon Coleman, and Jahmal Banks give me good depth. Tanner Koziol was my best TE option, and I really needed another one there, too.
The Plan of Attack.
So, I threw out a message on the league chat that I was pushing in the chips on the college side. I was selling Henry, Jacobs, and Evans initially. After one of our teams posted that he was selling college producers, I pounced on that immediately.
My first move was a tiny bit aggressive, but I went to him first and offered my second and fourth in the supplemental draft next season for Georgia State running back Marcus Carroll and UTSA’s receiver Joshua Cephus. Carroll has been PHENOMENAL this season and gives me that running back I can just lock in and get nearly 30 points a week. The team countered with a second and third-round pick for Caroll and Cephus, a bit more than I wanted to pay, but I took the shot.
After that move, I wanted to stay away from draft capital and focus on my aging NFL players. I had also dangled Arch Manning, one of the few college players I would be willing to move, and that was the next bait taken. It was tough to broker my future; as you will see, my college team is about to get pretty old. Manning was moved for Washington State’s Cameron Ward, Cincinnati’s Emory Jones, BYU’s Kedon Slovis (three QBs!!!), and BYU’s tight end Isaac Rex.
First, I am not the biggest believer in Manning. And that was probably a bit of a roster dump, it felt like. Ward and Rex are the big ones I wanted in that deal, and Jones could start in a pinch.
I wanted to get back to the NFL attack, and that quickly manifested itself. I went back and forth with an owner to move Jacobs next, and I was targeting Kansas’ running back Devin Neal and Washington’s receiver Jalen McMillan. Two guys with BIG college production but also NFL potential. Which I needed after pushing so much in with more emphasis on NCAA production.
It wasn’t my intention to move Hockenson, but I realized with how I was attacking this, my NFL team wouldn’t be overly competitive for a few years. We agreed on Neal and McMillan for Jacobs and Hockenson. I love Neal and think he’s a potential RB3 in the 2024 Draft class. With Caroll, it gave me a really strong starting RB duo. McMillan also gave me a WR1 with NFL potential, although the uncertainty of his injury almost stopped the deal.
One more move presented itself, as I was really intent on moving Evans. But the other owner also wanted Christian Kirk, and I was hesitant. The offer was initially Oklahoma’s QB Gabriel and Notre Dame RB Audric Estime for Evans and Kirk. I felt like that was a little light, and I don’t see much NFL potential in Gabriel or Estime, but at least Estime could have another season of college production. I countered with an offer, including Stanford’s TE Benjamin Yurosek, and the deal was struck.
The Dust Settles
Mind you, all of this happened in approximately two hours. The iron was hot, and owners struck. I would still love to move Henry and possibly Aaron Rodgers, and both could go fairly cheap.
My NFL team is barely competitive now but shouldn’t get absolutely rolled every week. I have trouble stripping down teams that far; I think it hurts the league to have a team getting throttled 150-40 every week. Now, I will still lose 150-90, but it doesn’t feel as bad to me!
On the college side, I am now one of the favorites, if not the favorite. I can weather injuries at every position. And I have depth enough that if I am down several key guys at each position, my team isn’t going to feel it much.
The hardest part to see when looking back is who will make it from college to the NFL. I don’t have many great options, but I didn’t move any either. McCarthy, Travis, and possibly Rattler could end up drafted next season.
For the running backs, I love Neal a ton and think Jeanty is going to be an NFL back, but beyond that – I have to hope for anyone else to make a mark. McMillan will play on Sundays, as well as Coleman, and then I have a slew of guys with a shot, but none I feel are locked in. Yurosek should be an NFL tight end, too, but I doubt he’s an elite one.
The Verdict… We Will See
In a week or so, I am going to attack a team from the other angle. I have a few in contention for the NFL title with NCAA teams on the downslide. I want you to see how that looks and the strategy I take.
I also hope to do a team where both sides are contending. It’s possible to attack both fronts, but definitely trickier. I did it last year and ended up finishing second in both leagues. It was tough, and both teams are still in contention.
Thank you for reading; any feedback would be awesome and appreciated!