Our Ask the Arbitrator feature provides quick, unbiased trade review when controversy divides your league. Today's trade dispute comes from Michael Fitzpatrick's 14-team PPR keeper league:
Two trades for review:
Thanks for the submission, Michael. We'll address each trade in order.
Trade 1: This trade should be upheld, but only because it is a keeper league. Normally, the standard of review is simple: could a reasonable fantasy football manager make a case for this trade helping their team this season? Under that standard, this trade would fail.
But this is a keeper league. In a keeper or dynasty league, the standard of review is lower because the rationale and ramifications extend beyond this season. So, let's take a look at what is really happening here.
Team A is 3-1 with Golden Tate and Malcom Floyd. At 3-1, it's unlikely that Floyd is starting for their team, but Floyd has been serviceable. Tate is currently ranked 20th in PPR scoring for wide receivers with 24 catches for 317 yards. Tate and Floyd are keeper-eligible for a 12th and 13th round pick, respectively.
Team B is 1-3 even with Jordy Nelson, who had an ADP this season of second to third round. Nelson is the bigger name (as evidenced by his ADP), and is currently a top-three PPR WR. But Nelson is not keeper-eligible and Team B is 1-3 even with Nelson's Herculean efforts thus far.
Team A gets the bigger name here with the most potential for this season. Team B gets an opportunity to cash in on a big name to help build his team for next year. It may be too early to push the panic button for Team B, but that's up to him (or her) to decide.
Tate is actually scoring at a WR2 level even with Detroit's recent offensive struggles. Whether that is sustainable is up for argument. Floyd is doing decently well in a resurgent San Diego offense. There's a good possibility he wasn't good enough to contribute to Team A but is good enough to contribute to the 1-3 Team B. Kudos to Team A for not resting on its laurels.
Ruling: The trade should be upheld.
Trade 2: This trade should also be upheld due to the keeper nature of this league. Here, we have two 2-2 teams going in different directions. It appears one team thinks it has a shot this season while the other is already building for next year.
Team C would trade away Montee Ball (currently outside the top-30 in PPR scoring for RBs) and Dez Bryant (a top-10 WR in PPR scoring). Neither player is keeper-eligible. Team D trades away 25th-ranked WR Alshon Jeffery, who has been injured this season but can be kept next season.
From an outsider's perspective, it looks like Team D believes it can win this season. To that end, it is trading away a player who could help its team next season for a buy-low, one-season RB and a top-10 WR that may put him over the top this season . . . but will not be able to help his team next season. Team C appears to be looking forward to next year already, but it's not exactly holding a fire sale. It gives up on the disappointing Montee Ball and trades top-10 WR Dez Bryant for potential top-10 WR Alshon Jeffery (if he's healthy) with the understanding that he can go into next season already set at one WR position.
Again, this trade would be overruled in a re-draft league, but this is a keeper league and that raises more possibilities for trade rationale.
Ruling: The trade should be upheld.
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Michael Rogers is spending the 2014 season in scenic Afghanistan, but that doesn't mean he's neglecting his AmmoDogs. A user at Fiverr took his classic AmmoDog logo and turned it into a uniform worn by Ndamukong Suh. It's easy to see the influence of the underlying Detroit Lions uniform, but the design had nothing to do with the Lions.