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Trading/Valuing IDP assets in Combination leagues - Part 1

As with any dynasty league, trading is part of the fun. Combination leagues are leagues where both offensive and defensive players play together, hopefully equally, or in full combination leagues. This means that however many offensive players start every week, is matched by the defensive starters. For instance, start 10 offense/ start 10 Individual Defensive Players (IDP).

Now, I will say that seeing IDP assets traded is pretty rare. I might be one of the few people who will use IDP assets to balance a trade, whereas most others will use draft picks to balance a trade. I will use draft picks as well, but I will also look at IDP assets for balancing. I will use some examples of trades I have made later on, but for now I just want to reassert that offensive players have more value in a vacuum than any IDP asset.If you read my 3 part series on the ABC’s of IDP, you will note that in part 3, where I showed the Wins over Replacement (WoRP) chart, that WR, QB, and RB all had more WoRP value than DL, LB, and DB positions. So trading offensive players straight up for IDP rarely is a good strategy.

    To start, we need to understand how to value IDP assets in fully balanced combination leagues. In such leagues, the top 15 or so IDP assets may be worth as much as a late 1st round pick in SF rookie drafts, to a mid-1st round pick in 1 QB league rookie drafts. That is about maximum value for the best IDP. Players like Micah Parsons, TJ Watt, Maxx Crosby, Nick Bosa, Roquan Smith, etc. you should equivalate with a late rookie 1st round pick, somewhere in the 1.09-1.12 range in SF leagues, maybe as high as 1.06 in 1 QB leagues.Then there are roughly 40-50 more IDP assets that have 2nd round values in rookie drafts.

To start with, we should understand how to value IDP assets within a standard rookie draft.

Just as the 1st IDP asset does not come off the board in a startup draft, in a rookie draft it is extremely rare to see any IDP asset get drafted in round 1. Normally, the top IDP asset does not come off the board in a rookie draft until the middle of round 2. That is assuming all things being equal.

Looking at this 2024 draft class, it seems like offense is very strong, but no IDP asset stands out as an obvious top choice. I would not expect to see the top IDP asset in 2024 to come off the board until around the 2.10, or probably later.

Usually, the top IDP asset will be a top 5 pick in the NFL draft, and I do not expect to see any defensive player selected in the top 5 picks in 2024 NFL Draft.

In part 2, we will discuss trade values, and I will show some trades that I have actually made involving combination assets.

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