This is one of my more recently-discovered tips. Some rookies come out on fire in their debuts and the first half of the regular season, but many of them start slowing down toward the end of the year. It’s likely due to never having to play so many games in college and against such elite defensive talent. It’s just something to keep in mind, especially for running backs. When they get to a point where they’re carrying the ball more times than they ever have in their career, fatigue creeps in, and they don’t have the same burst they had early in the season. Of course, this isn’t the case for every back, but it’s pretty common. The risk of injury also increases as the season goes on.
Before it gets too late in the season, start to look at trading these guys. Sometimes rookies do keep their full head of steam all the way through the fantasy playoffs, but usually they slow down a little bit or get a little banged up. The NFL is a different beast than college. Getting rid of a player when he’s at his peak is called selling high, and, if you do that, you can get a good return for what you’re giving up.
Just as you always want to seek out the opportunity for good trades, other owners will be trying to sucker you into bad ones. There’s always one owner in every league who thinks they can offer 3 average-at-best players for one of your best. Don’t fall victim to this. Be smart about trading. Basically, if someone is offering you a trade, it’s most likely going to be for their benefit only. If you get a trade offer, never accept it immediately. Instead, look over that owner’s entire roster to see which players you want from their team. Make counter-offers to include those guys. I love to wheel and deal, but you have to be smart about it.