Monday, 24 February 2014 00:00

Terms & Abbreviations

138k – This is the basement price for a player. Occasionally, coaches will refer to a position they haven’t yet filled as being a 138k. Basically, some rookie cash cow they haven’t found yet.

Auto-Emergency (AE) – If you have a player in your 17 (13 on field and 4 reserves) who doesn’t take the field for his club (this includes staying on the bench for the whole game), you get an AE to cover that player’s position. The AE is the lowest scoring player (greater than 0) who you have in your remaining NPRs. Also, you only get one!

Booted: Getting removed from the group. Crimes include, blocking a fellow Renegade, deleting posts/comments, making up shit about last minute team list changes, and sharing Renegades info with other groups.

Break Even (BE) – the approximate score required for a player to hold his value. If he scores less, his value will drop. More, and it increases. Approximate BEs are kindly provided right here at RFS.

Byes – Because the NRL insists on putting State of Origin over many weeks in the middle of the season, the competition has an 8 week period where some clubs have a bye. Every club gets two byes over this period, during which time your players in those clubs will not score you points. For H2H teams, this isn’t a big problem as most of these rounds are also H2H byes. For Overall players, this 8 week period is the most import part of the season. You will need to work hard to keep 17 players on the field over this time to keep the points rolling in. On top of the byes, State of Origin will make certain Fantasy guns unavailable. It’s the toughest part of the season, requiring spreadsheets, post-it notes and a lot of booze. But, it’s also the most exciting time of the season.

Captain (C or Cap) – Your captain scores double points. Choose him wisely. If you need to make up ground you can take the high-risk winger playing against a weak club, and then watch him get rested by the coach when his club builds up a big lead…

Cash Cow – a player who starts very cheap and increases in price over the course of the season. Cash cows are normally players you wouldn’t run in your scoring 17 if you had a choice.

Dual Position Player (DPP) – A player who can be placed in two different positions. Common examples are players who can fill both CTR and WFB. This is useful for DPP trades. For example, you could trade a WFB out, bring one of your CTRs into WFB, and then purchase a new CTR. You can do multiple DPP switches per trade.

Ghost Cow (also, MCK) – A cash cow with great potential who never plays.

Gun – A non-stop fantasy point-scoring machine. Gun status is often argued about, but players like Cam Smith, Corey Parker, Daly Cherry-Evans and Greg Inglis are undeniable fantasy gods. Importantly, a gun in a position like WFB and CTR doesn’t need to average as much as a gun in a high point scoring position like HOK or 2RF. It’s all about what players are available.

Head-to-head (H2H) – By getting your mates together you can play head to head matches over the season, with a final series at the end. The bye rounds are mostly unimportant with personal matchups and rivalry the source of the fun. It’s entry level stuff and all the glory is in playing overall.

Keeper – a player who is good enough to not trade out of your team by the end of the season. The definition of a Keeper is unique to every team, as the number or trades, available cash, and other problem positions may lower or raise standards.

Loophole – Made available by the introduction of rolling lockout in 2013, the loophole (or, Captain’s Loophole) was a strategic maneuver to get two bites at the captain cherry. Unfortunately, because some people didn’t understand how to use it, it is lost in the past…

Mid-ranger – A player who’s not a cash cow and not a keeper. He’s scoring mid-30s and if you listen to your mate, he’s about to go huge. Normally your mate is wrong, as 70% of players are mid-rangers, and stay that way for their entire careers. But, you have to pick a few…so they better be the ones that turn into keepers…

Non-playing Reserve (NPR) – A NPR is a player who is in your 25, but not selected in your scoring 17.

Nuffie (occasionally, 138k nuffie) – At the end of the season, coaches will trade out their cash cows to make cash for big upgrades. However, to avoid bringing in potentially shit AEs, they bring in basement price (i.e., 138k) players who will never play. Maximum cash, minimum risk. In the injury crisis of 2013, this strategy left many teams with less than 17 players.

Overall – Overall coaches are those that are aiming to accumulate as many points during the season. Initially, this is to win the major prize. Most overall coaches realize they cannot win the prize from very early on. But, this isn’t an excuse to give up. Your end of year rank is a badge of honor (or shame) that will give you cred in Renegades and will need to be beaten next season.

Points-per-minute (PPM) – The average scoring rate of a player.

Reverse Trade – Before the first game of the round starts, you can trade and then reverse that trade.

Rolling Lockout – Because Tuesday team lists tend to be a bit unreliable, NRL Fantasy gives you the opportunity to keep trading and adjusting your team through the round. As a player starts a game, they get locked in and you can’t change them. NOTE: if you want to trade during rolling lockout you cannot reverse trade.

Sideways Trade: a trade where the player being taken out is likely to have the same net benefit on your team’s weekly scores over the whole season. For example, trading Tolman to Graham (assuming both are fit and getting similar scores). As they both play for the Dogs, their byes are identical, and are FRFs, they are equivalent. Trading one to the other (other than in the case of injury, or if Tolman is selected for Origin) is a wasted trade. It is often difficult to identify a sideways trade as many features have to be weighed up, including; bye cover, average, price, position, injury/suspension prone-ness, and job security.

Smokey or Point of Difference (POD) – A player, who most other coaches haven’t selected, that may score well. This is a good strategy if you need to play catch-up. But remember, there is often a reason that most coaches haven’t selected that player.

Source (or sauce) – One of the great benefits of belonging to the Renegades family is the access to information. People who find articles online, or tweets will normally share them in the group. But, occasionally, someone will share some gossip without acknowledging where it came from. Not sharing the source can be because there is no source and it’s just someone trolling. Otherwise, it could be privileged inside information. Get to know the insiders, they are important people.

Trolls who lie about team changes just before lockout will be abused and booted.

Team List Tuesday (TLT) – Every Tuesday, clubs will release their team lists, which will be progressively posted up in Renegades through the day. Take them with a grain of salt, they are just a guide. The NRL Fantasy website will also show which players are selected to play with green lights next to player names. These are based on Tuesday team lists, and may not reflect who actually takes the field.

Trade Rage – Many coaches will follow a bad round by making rash, ill-considered trades in an attempt to improve their team. This will normally leave rookie coaches with no trades well before the finals. Patience is the most important skill in NRL Fantasy.

Troll – A complex term. Some trolls will get booted (people making up shit about last minute team list changes), while some will get applause (baiting an origin fan into a rage). See here for some background –

NOTE: Saying “I was just trolling” or “hook, line and sinker” after someone publicly humiliates you in an argument is not cool. Real trolls never admit to being trolls. So, just take it on the chin, accept you were wrong, and slink away.

Vice-Captain (VC) – If your captain fails to take the field for his club, your VC scores double.

Some common player abbreviations
DCE – Daly Cherry Evans
CS9 – Cameron Smith
CP13 – Corey Parker
PG13 – Paul Gallen
JWH – Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
RTS – Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
SKD – Shaun Kenny Dowall
SBW (SBW OMG, $BW, Money Bill) – Sonny Bill Williams

Published in NRL Fantasy
Monday, 24 February 2014 00:00

Setting Up Your Team

Many strategies exist for setting up your team. And, much disagreement revolves around how much cash you should have left over, how many guns to buy, what positions to stack with cash, and is Cam Smith worth the cash.  This is how I set a team up, so hopefully it will help.

This is my strategy for “overall”. I will add some H2H notes at the bottom.

Quickly, I will outline the objective of an overall team. You want to start making big scores as quickly as possible. Unlike H2H, where your team should be peaking when the finals start, you want 900+ scores as early in the season as possible. To do this, you may burn a lot of trades through the season and your team may fizzle out when late season injuries hit. But, to win, you need to start strong. This requires a careful balance between the three categories of player: cash cows, mid-rangers and guns. You can’t afford 25 guns, so compromise is the game. In an ideal world, you will recruit a team where all the cash cows and mid-rangers explode and turn into guns, but it just won’t happen. Instead, you will need to recruit cash cows that turn into mid-rangers, who can be cashed out for more cash cows, or upgraded to guns. Ideally, any mid-rangers you start with will become keepers, or even guns.

First, pick Cam Smith. He’s your captain. Doubling his reliable points every week will set you up for a solid score.

Second, identify the cash cows. Some will be obvious, such as rookies starting at $138k and holding down a starting position. Some will be less obvious, requiring hours of study, some guess work and a bit of luck. Importantly, don’t pick a player who isn’t named in the Round 1 team lists. Every year there is some rumored superstar cash cow that everyone recruits, but doesn’t end up playing for the first half of the season. You need every position available to generate you cash.

How many cash cows should you have? – As many as you can get who will get reliable minutes and game time. Beware the cash cow that is covering for a soon-to-return star. Remember, to increase in value, the player must play 3 games.

Next, get some guns. I like at least one in every position. Prime candidates are -HOK: Smith, FRF: Fifita, 2RF: Parker, HLF: Cherry-Evans, CTR: (not sure this year), WFB: Greg Inglis. An important consideration when thinking about guns (and mid-rangers) is how they will be affected by the byes. If they are origin certainties and their team has byes when origin isn’t restricting availability, they will miss more games than some other guns. Look into it.

Finally, pick the good mid-rangers. This is where the high risk is. Will that player returning from injury play well, or will his knee explode again? Will that rookie from last year keep improving? Will that workhorse forward get the minutes required to score big at his new club. Remember, mid-rangers need to do better than their price predicts they will, otherwise you just have a player who averages less than 45 who hasn’t made you any money.

So, once you have locked down these players, you should have a few positions left over that you haven’t filled yet. You don’t have the cash for guns, there are no more obvious cash cows left, and the remaining mid-rangers look too risky. There are three remaining strategies: 1) Pick some cash cows and hope they play (bad idea, see above), 2) Buy some reliable mid-ranges who will keep scoring 40 all year (better, but not great), and 3) Take a gamble on some exciting mid-rangers who will improve.

Personally, if you want to win Overall, you have to take option three. Sure, Mannering is mister reliable, and will not get injured. But, someone else will pick that player who is the same price as Mannering and ends up scoring 15 pnts/round more. You have to find that player.

These final selections are where all the hard work goes in. Taking players in and out. Tweaking, adjusting, reading articles, making spreadsheets, asking questions on Renegades – make all the work count!

For me, I like to spend all my cash when setting up my team. But, if there is a mid-range player who is too risky to snap up straight away, but could be a must-have once his true form is obvious, than some spare cash may be advisable. Because, before the price rises too much, you will want to get that player, and as none of your cash cows will have made anything yet, you need the money. Last year, I did this to keep an eye on SBW, and it paid off.

H2H notes:

H2H is difficult to give advice for, as your strategy really depends on how good the coaches are in your league. If there are enough noobs in your league (you know, the guy from accounting who follows AFL and is in the league to make up numbers) your position in the top 8 will be assured. In that case, go for lots of cash cows so you have plenty of cash come finals. If it’s a gun league, expect the competition to be tight and making the 8 a difficult proposition. In that case, you may want to start with a more balanced team, such as one aimed to win overall.

Published in NRL Fantasy
Monday, 24 February 2014 00:00

Setting Your Lineup

Every Friday afternoon, you need to set your lineup. Assuming you have already made your trades, this involves selecting your starting 13, 4 reserves, a captain and a vice captain. This may seem straight forward, but it isn’t. These are the things you need to remember.

First, do some research. Tuesday Team Lists will be out of date, so don’t trust them.

Your Captain choice should be easy, the highest averaging player in your team. Thanks to the power of the stupid majority, you don’t have to worry about the Captain’s Loophole. But, remember that your captain will be locked in, so if he is any chance of a late withdrawal, it may be worth captaining another player to avoid a shitty AE.

Now, who should be in your starting 13? This may seem obvious; your best players in each position! But, it’s not that simple. First, it is important to note that it makes no difference to your score if a player in in the starting 13, or one of the 4 reserves. So, it is more sensible to set your line up to maximise flexibility.

For example, put players on the bench who play last in the round. This way, they are available to switch onto the field if a player is a late withdrawal, and the reserve can be switched if needed. If your player is locked onto the field (because the reserves in that position have all played) he cannot be taken off the field if needed.

Also, take advantage of rolling lockout to protect yourself against injury prone players. Put them on the bench if they play late in the round. For the same reasons as above, this will enable you to switch a reserve if they are a late withdrawal.

H2H: Look at your opposition’s team and set a team to suit the matchup. If you can see you will need to make up ground, run PODs and a risky captain.

- The Defensive Centre

Published in NRL Fantasy
Monday, 24 February 2014 00:00

Taking a Screenshot & Sharing Your Team

Sharing your team with others online is useful to get feedback and suggestions. However, if you take a bad screenshot, you’ll probably find that most people will just give you shit about your screenshot, rather than help.

Another important tip is to give people some background (H2H or Overall, and trade ideas you had). No one likes a leech.

Finally, don’t spam.

Common mistakes include -

* Posting the entire screenshot, rather than cropping to include just the screen. Remember to not crop out the number of remaining trades and salary cap. This info can help people help you.

* Trying to crop to just the image, but actually just erasing the unnecessary space, leaving a massive white border around your team.

* Taking a blurry photo of your team with a smart phone.

* Posting a team up every day, asking for help. Spamming will just lead to abuse.

Here are some helpful screenshot guides.




And, here’s how you crop.


Mobile devices:


Once you have the photo, share it!

Important: If you can’t work out how to do this, just type your team out (in an easy to follow format).

- The Defensive Centre

Published in NRL Fantasy