The NPC is in full swing, and without the big names of the All Blacks in the mix there are Fantasy bargins to be had in all positions.
Taking a look down the performers from the competition so far it's pretty obvious that the Super 12 performances (or lack of) of many of the first division players has not been forgotten, either by the Fantasy Rugby boys (when they set the predicted level of ownership of the players, and therefore their base price) and the FR playing public, who have jumped on the proven performers.
A few names in the top 10 players overall were also on the list for the Super12, Glen Marsh, Inoke Afeaki, Paul Tito and Andrew Blowers all had standout fantasy Super12s due to their huge work-rate and you can pretty much guarentee (barring injury) that they will do the same in the NPC comp.
It's the guys who spent the Super 12 on the bench or didn't even play at that level who are the real bargins. Here's a few names to take a closer look at. Keith Lowen, Neil Crowley, Brett Waaka, Hayden Taylor, Kristian Ormsby, Scott Mcleod, Malili Muliaina. With the exception of Lowen all these guys are worth under $2 million and all are in the top 25 players overall.
One struggle I have had is trying to pick guys that I am certain will get some game time. I was a bit slack in the first round and picked a couple of guys who I figured would be playing who actually didn't. This seriously hurts your team, especially when you consider that the top fantasy teams have so far averaged over 450 points a round, that's an average of 45 per player (which is huge), there is no way you can keep up with that when you have dead weight on your team.
This point is especially important if you are thinking about gambling on picking up some of the returning All Blacks this week, given that none of them are expected to play (although it wouldn't surprise me if at least some of the AB bench players get a run this weekend) you are really taking a big risk if you grab them this week. Safest bet is to steer clear of them for now, and then get in quick after the deadline and snap up as many as you can afford, you are bound to make some $$ at least!