Mid Season Trade Strategy Questions

  1. What time of the week is the best to send out trade offers?
  2. What are the most successful trade types? Most unsuccessful?
  3. What to look for in a potential trade partner?
  4. How to offer a compelling trade based on a person’s record? 5-1? 1-5?

Do more successful trades happen before or after the waivers go through?

How to establish healthy trade relations? Talk to the potential trade partner and don’t be afraid to compliment their players - I always start out with “I like juju a lot man what’s your price” and this usually at least in most cases allows the other person to put their guard down. This also allows for you to build a case for your own players because this tone is now discussional and you’ll come off as less of a salesman.

I would assume best time to trade is after waivers, because now people have a good idea of what their team has or lacks, and they understand their window of opportunity to trade is closing in on the week. Though always good to initiate trade talks early in the week.

Regardless, biggest factor here will always be how engaging is your league, and how competitive is your league. I’m in a league that is highly competitive, but teams are willing to trade based on their own perception and needs. I was able to acquire sanders from a team for deion lewis, and the owner knew he was basically giving him up. But his situation was dire, and he needed to adjust in a short period of time so he went for it.

Most successful trades are based off of team needs - take advantage of the byes, the injuries, and the lackluster performances that you think have room for a turnaround.

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  1. I try to execute a lot of my trades before waivers clear. Mainly cause I try to do a lot of upgrades and 2 for 1 or 3 for 2 trades so I can take advantage of waivers. And I find people are pretty receptive as well because if they receive a player in a trade that fills a void, they can reallocate their waiver $.

  2. IMO, all trades fall into one of the following 2 categories. Stud for depth, or positional need or a combination of the both. Stud for depth is probably the most common which is usually linked to positional need. In most of my leagues, I’ve spent most of the season trading up depth for studs because i drafted well in the later rounds to the point where I have a lot of start worthy players.

  3. Per the above, I go and try and identify a team with a need that I can address. If I have a lot of RBs, I find teams who don’t have any RBs. If I have a lot of WRs, I look for teams that don’t have a lot of WRs. And if you really want to take it to the next level, I am also constantly scanning my leagues and tracking in an excel the needs of every single team and the strengths of every single team. If I see a need on a team that I cannot address but they have a player I really want, I will then go to look at other rosters who have weaknesses I can address to trade for their players that address that weakness. So i can then go back and make a trade for the player I actually want. Prime example of this is in my main league of record, which is a superflex, someone had a WR I wanted but really needed a QB. I didn’t have QBs to spare so I went to created a trade with someone who did have QB depth, traded for Flacco and then used Flacco as a trade piece to get the WR i wanted.

  4. Pretty tough to trade with someone who is 5-1 unless they have an injury. Most trades for the top ranked guys are usually smaller trades in nature and to address bye week concerns. I did one of those recently as well. Looked ahead to my bye weeks in 9-10 and made some early trades to fill those weeks. 1-5 guys are much easier to target. And follow much of the same criteria I said above. You need to identify ways to make their team better, figure out if you can do that with your trade pieces or if you need to go out and acquire other pieces.

I don’t really target the 5-1 or 6-0 guys. Generally speaking, they are very confident in their teams given their record and probably think (perhaps rightfully so, perhaps not), that they were draft gurus and all their players are the bomb.com. Hard to execute favorable deals in those scenarios.

Also, don’t just throw out blind trade offers. I always open a line of communication first and see if what I think they need is in line with what they think. You don’t want to just start with hey, your WRs suck and start insulting their team if that’s not what they see or what they want to believe.


Communication is key. Be kind and respectful, look for opportunities that will make your team stronger, and look for trades that are mutually beneficial, like you trade away an RB for a WR from a team struggling with RB issues. And sell the story on why this is good for them. Mike kinda hit the nail on the head. There will always be reasonable people to talk and trade with, and then there are jerks that wouldn’t trade you Wendell Smallwood unless you were offering Antonio Brown…

This is the key. What I see way too often on these forums is people posting stuff like “I give up Lockett and Lynch for AB. Is this fair”? And I say no, that’s a joke and the response is “well they are 0-5 and need an RB”. Too many people only consider how the trade benefits them but not how it makes the other team better. Just cause they’re 0-5 doesn’t mean they start pawning off studs for mediocre fringe players which doesn’t even make their team better.

I do a crapload of trades in my leagues and try and instigate a lot. In my league of record, there’s been 16 trades so far and I am involved in 8 of them. I find the best way to approach a trade is to look at someones team and first ask “how can I make HIS/HER team better” and then ask “how can this make MY team better”. And if the answer to either part is no, probably no trade to be made there. Don’t force it, it’s fine to move on. This has been what I found to be the most successful way in not only making trades, but establishing long term trade partners.

Goal of a trade should never be, “how do i rip this guy off?”. Even if you pull a trade like that off, that person will likely never trade with you again.

I think what I have a hard time with is when i go into a trade for a stud player who has been underperforming. I don’t know how to value that guy. Especially when im in a couple of leagues where the people I want to trade with have no form of communication or don’t respond to trade proposals.

This is much easier to do when there is no trade review period right? In all my leagues there was a review period of 2 days but I finally talked them into a compromise of 1 day. I would love to trade from one guy to help another. My only concern is that no one seems as gung ho as myself about trading in my league of record which sucks. Have you ever gone to make a move like that and then get stuck because the second guy didn’t want to complete the trade with you?

Posts like this skew the value for viewers which also leads them to believe they can go get a stud like AB for pennies on the dollar because they saw what others are offering. It’s also the case when posts/ podcasts/ youtube videos are telling owners to go buy a guy “cheap”, or “buy low”. As I was saying before, these things confuse me a bit when trying to value the players I’m interested in. I wish communication was fluent across all of my leagues to help with that.

Yeah I would say in any situation this largely boils down to how well you know your league and then each player. I’ll usually have to go back and forth in the negotiations process and sometimes just back off and say maybe this trade isn’t in our best interest, our perceived values don’t align. This is the challenge in competitive leagues - getting a fair trade done. Too often one side wants to blatantly win a trade, and that just means that they probably are risk averse or simply are lazy. I’ve accepted the fact that in most cases, I’ll have to be the one taking the gamble in order to get something done, meaning I’m the one taking the perceived loss (of course in my mind, the trade benefits me).

I understand your struggle is communication within the league - this will handicap the process a lot. I would try to find a way to contact each individual team, whether it’s through the smack board on the apps, league chat, whatever - it makes the process actually flow.

But you can’t buy low or sell high on a player if you can’t guage the other team’s interest- you’re just shooting in the dark.

Find a new league. Trade review periods are stupid.

Also when people say buy low, it doesn’t mean offer trash. It just means you don’t have to give up what you would if they were performing well or how they normally would. For example, giving JuJu + an RB2 would have gotten you AB a couple weeks ago. That is buying low. If it was before the season, you would get laughed out of the building with an offer like that.

The key to buying low is thinking about how you value that player accounting for the risk that they may not recover or do as well as you think and paying a lower price accounting for that risk. BUying low is about you betting on a player that others are selling on hoping that your right. A lot of these low ball offers I see are laughable because even if the players don’t recover or hit, they still make out like a bandit cause of how much of the lowball the offers are.