With fantasy football drafts in full swing this weekend, I wanted to offer you a few pointers to aid you in your selection process.

-  Be prepared.  Do your homework.  Know who’s hurt, including lineman who help your QB/RB/WR succeed.

-  Stay calm.  Part of being prepared is knowing ahead of time who you want to take.  If there are three picks until yours, decide on three guys you’d be happy with.  When it comes your turn you’ll be able to calmly select your guy.

-  Don’t get sucked into a run.  If the Tight Ends are going like hot cakes don’t snag a guy that isn’t in the tier that’s being drafted.  For example, if Antonio Gates and Jason Witten have been taken, it’s OK to take Kellen Winslow.  It’s not OK to take Chris Cooley though when he’ll be available a round or two later.

-  Don’t draft a Kicker early.  They are such a crap shoot.  There is a difference between the top Kicker and the average kicker, but uncovering the top Kicker can be tricky.

-  Don’t get too drunk.  It’s OK to have an adult beverage (assuming you’re of age and not driving over the limit) or two.  However, don’t get to that goofy stage when you’d just as soon take David Garrard in the third round as you would hit on your friend’s slighly unattractive sister.  You have to live with this team all year.  Wait until after the draft to booze it up.

-  Eat before hand.  Again, you want to concentrate on your draft.  You shouldn’t be hitting the taco dip or thinking about how Taco Bell will be on the way home.  Limit your distractions.

-  Don’t tip your hand.  I know you want to talk fantasy and impress your friends, but they don’t need to know your sleepers.  Keep your info to yourself.

-  Listen.  There will be information available if you listen to your leaguemates.  Let them tip their hands. 

-  Avoid being too much of a homer.  It’s OK to take one of your guys as a tie-breaker.  However, don’t go taking Sidney Rice in the 5th round because you’re a Vikings fan.  Use your head.

OK, there you have it.  These tips won’t guarantee you fantasy success, but they put you in better position to succeed this year.

It’s time to take a look around the league and see what’s happening on the injury front.

Derek Anderson – Suffered a concussion vs. the Giants (Sack by Osi Umenyiora ) on Monday.  He’ll likely sit out Saturday’s game against Detroit for precautionary reasons.

Tom Brady - It’s the Patriots so it’s not worth analyzing, but Brady will likely miss this week’s preseason matchup with the Eagles.

Reggie Brown - Reggie will miss the rest of the preseason to be ready for the opener vs. the Rams.

Kevin Curtis - A sports hernia will likely sideline Curtis for a couple of months.  Fortunately for Curtis a couple of the weeks will be before the season starts.  He could miss 4-6 games.  The Eagles have a bye in Week 7 so he could possibly be out until Week 8.  Here’s further proof while drafting early isn’t recommended.

Antonio Gates - Gates has finally began to get some work in.  He’ll probably take it slow going forward with a target of Week 1 for his full return.

T.J. Houshmandzadeh - Housh continues to be sidelined with a hamstring injury.  While it would be nice for him to get some work in, I’m not too worried yet.

Steven Jackson - There’s no injury to report (yet), but now S-Jax has to get up to speed.  Hopefully he doesn’t rush himself because that’s how you hurt a hamstring.

Tarvaris Jackson - Brad Childress continues to be hush hush on T-Jack’s status.  Like anybody cares.  They are preparing him to be ready to play to test his moxie, but in the end it’s not worth sending him out there against the Steelers.

Greg Jennings - His knee injury looks to be past him, and he’ll likely return to action this week vs. Denver.

Rudi Johnson - Last year Rudi dealt with injuries and Kenny Watson was clearly the best back on the Bengals.  This year Rudi is dealing with injuries and Chris Perry is looking to assume that role.  I’ve lost some confidence in Rudi.

Kevin Jones - Jones will likely get some work tonight vs. the 49ers.  He’s trying to come back from an ACL injury suffered last December.

Peyton Manning – Should start to practice next week.  He’s on pace to return for the season opener.  I doubt he’ll try and get any work in vs. Cincy at the end of the month.

Willis McGahee – McGahee was quoted in the Baltimore Sun saying “”I will be ready for the regular season, but I don’t know about playing in the preseason.”  There you have it folks.  Nobody likes the preseason.

Time for another Fantasy Football Cage Match.  We have a new challenger, Majesty, to mix it up with Awesome.  Today they debate Marion Barber III.

The Fantasy Cage Match (of the Century, Decade, Day, or Minute, etc.) 
Awesome vs. Majesty

In a no holds barred – they may even rip on each other’s children—contest of wit and sarcasm (or lack thereof), in a 15 foot tall steel cage laced with barbed wire and surrounded by super-hot, scantily clad Terrorist chicks ready to douse the loser with anthrax. (Pause for mental image to set in).

Who will win? I think it was JFK or Jesus who said: It’s not whether you win or lose, but how many people you step on and offend during the course of the game.

“I may not be right, I’m not politically correct, and I’m probably going to offend you in some way, but I’m always AWESOME.”

The Fantasy Football Cage Match:
Position:  Running Back
Player:  Marion Barber III
Stance:  Pro
By:  Awesome

New challenger, same result: meat. Ok meat, let’s go.

Does this guy belong in the top 10 RB’s?? The answer is…NO.

HE BELONGS IN THE TOP 3!!!  So, I guess, technically, the answer is “yes,” but I had to do that for effect. Anyway, the only two I would rank ahead of him are LT, and Addai. And because this is the first thing you’ll want to spew at me, let’s dismiss the other “candidates” before we go on to Barber (don’t worry, this won’t take long).

Adrian Peterson:
You’ll get the full frontal nude attack on Peterson from me in a few days, but here’s the abbreviated edition for those of you have trouble talking to the opposite sex. He’s played less than 1 full year in the NFL because he was injured; he has a history of being injury prone (see where this is going? Yeah, 1 + 1 = YOU’RE STUPID); ankles and knees help you run, and your collar bone… never mind) ; out of the 14 games he actually did play, he had 2 really great games( won your fantasy matchup for you), 4 good games (at least 100 yds & TD, or equivalent), 3 average games (100 yds or less, 0 TDs), and 5 really terrible games (you counted on him, and he lost you the game, including week 16). Hmmm, which one of those numbers is biggest? We’re done here.

Larry Johnson:
Or should I call him “The 1-1/2 Year Wonder”? That’s right, and I won’t get into as much detail because there aren’t as many people on his bandwagon this year, but guess what? Without an Offensive Line, the RB sucks. That’s it.

Brian Westbrook:
Also known as “Captain Injured”. He has NEVER, repeat NEVER played ONE FULL SEASON!!! True, he’s come close, and when he plays, he’s good—really good. But like Peterson, he’s all or nothing. And however good you think he has been, his TD totals for his career read like this (from most recent): 12, 11, 7, 9, 11, 0. Yep. I’ll let that sink in for a second. WOW! Or, as my two year old just learned to say: THAT’S AMAZING!!! That’s actually very average, maybe slightly above average. Either way, he’s a headache and you’ll get burned a few times every year.  You can have him.

Steven Jackson:
Give me a break. The guy had one year of really good numbers, and guess what? During that year, 9 of his “THAT’S AMAZING” TDs all came in weeks 12-17 (yes, 3 TDs in week 17), which means he didn’t even get you into the playoffs, so it doesn’t matter that he won them for you — unless you aim to win the toilet bowl every year, because that’s the trophy he won you.

Who else…Frank Gore? Sure, why not:
TDs (again) most recent: 6, 9, and 3. THAT’S AMAZING!!!. And it’s not like you’ll have to worry about him getting hurt, or playing is a game time decision. ‘Nuff said.

Ok, now let’s get to Barber.

If you like fantasy football, you should also like players who score touchdowns, also called “TDs” (and no, this isn’t the same thing your girlfriend/wife/ex-wife gave you, those are “STDs”). And TDs are worth 6 points. BAM! POW! ZAP!  Just like that! 6 points! Yep, that’s how it works. And don’t whine to me about “well, I get 1 pt for every 10 yards blah blah blah, and so Frank Gore is worth more because blah blah blah,” I don’t care. 6 is worth more than 1, period. At least that’s how my league scores it. And if your league scores it differently, sign me up and increase the entry fee.

And  over the last two years, he racked up 26 TDs, and he did it while sharing time with Julius “not Peppers” Jones, who had (stole) 267 and 166 carries in 2006 & 2007, respectively (not really). Give Barber most of those carries (I’m sure Felix will get some of them, especially in blowouts), and you’ve got your yardage totals that put him in the top 3 by the end of the year.

Let’s remember, the best thing that happened to Marion Barber owners was “The Big D” getting rid of that fossil Bill Parcels.  Parcels is one of those ancient white guys who just hates, HATES to admit when he’s wrong. Sure, he’s a great coach and all, or at least he was; and yes, he deserves a certain amount of respect. But I’ll give him that respect when I see him standing behind my Grandfather in the cafeteria line at the old folks’ home, balancing his tray full of strained peas in one hand, and his oxygen tank in the other. Parcels is the only reason Barber had to share the workload the last two years, despite Julius Jones making a very strong case for his own dismissal. And make no mistake, Julius Jones was his guy. That’s why they kept trying to work him in, Parcels didn’t want to admit he drafted the wrong guy; or possibly, if Jones does what he looks like he’s going to do in Seattle, Parcels just wasn’t willing to write his playbook around Jones’ particular skill-set(s), and the mesh didn’t fit.

Regardless, Barber is the only car in the garage now, and it’s his race to win or lose. He’ll be given the chance. Sure, Felix Jones is there to remind Barber that he may not have much room for error, but really, there’s no way the Cowboys are going to willingly give the running game to a rookie. Not with this team; this team is EXPECTED to make a run for the Super Bowl (if not win it outright), and you don’t go into Vegas or Dallas or anywhere in Texas for that matter with that swagger, confidence that borders on cockiness, with “??s” about your running game. Especially in Dallas, where, historically, they won each and every ring with a great Running Back leading the way. And the Cowboys were confident enough in Barber to let Jones move to the Northwest. Given who’s run for the Jerry Jones in the past, if he’s comfortable letting Barber take the reins in this year’s quest for a ring, then so am I.


The Fantasy Football Cage Match:
Position:  Running Back
Player:  Marion Barber III
Stance:  Con
By:  Majesty

A reporter from the Dallas Morning News had this to say about a Dallas running back: “They’re going to get him the ball in space and give him opportunities to make one guy miss and take it to the house. He gives Dallas a game-breaker in the backfield like they haven’t had in years because he has such big-play potential.”

That player was not named Marion Barber III. Thus, Barber’s claim to his team’s #1 RB position is not without question. Whether or not he should hold your team’s #1 RB spot has a simple answer: No.

What you want out of your top RB is performances that will lead to victories week in, week out. Let’s check out Mr. Barber’s consistency.

In 2007, he averaged 12.75 carries per game with a standard deviation of 4.78. That is, you’d expect him to get anywhere from 8 to 18 carries per game. Compare that against guys like Thomas Jones (19), Fred Taylor (15), Edgerrin James (20), Justin Fargas (16) and LenDale White (19). What you can see is that his better games for carries are sub-par for most of those others. Notice that I’m not comparing him to guys like LT, Adrian Peterson, Steven Jackson, Brian Westbrook, etc.

In 2007, he averaged 60.94 yards per game with a standard deviation of 31.97. So in a given week, him getting 30 yards is just as likely as 90 yards. Comparing against the same people:

Jones (70/game, sd of 32)
Taylor (80/game, sd of 34)
James (76/game, sd of 26)
Fargas (72/game, sd of 53)
White (69/game, sd of 34)

So he’s not quite as consistent as James, and on par with Taylor, Jones and White. He does appear to be more consistent than Fargas, but note that Fargas had two games in which he had a total of 3 carries and 13 yards, which elevates his standard deviation and lowers his average. The problem is that while he matches their consistency, it shows that he consistently has fewer yards than them.

Now, the biggest reason his numbers are lower is the running back by committee system. One might wonder why he hasn’t been handed the lead role. Well, the rap on Barber is that he runs really hard. Admittedly, the perk of this is the ability to get the tough yards in either red zone. His most impressive run last year was for two yards, and it was in the end zone, though he didn’t get a touchdown on it. The downside of it is that when you run that hard, you wear yourself out. The team wants you to still have some fuel in the tank for those short yardage situations late in the game. Translation: A limited number of carries.

The most evident reason to not name Marion Barber your #1 RB is because of that dreaded running back by committee. After getting rid of Julius Jones (164 carries last year vs. Barber’s 204) in the offseason, it looked like MB3 would have things all to himself. Yet it looks as though he still might share carries with Jones. Not that Jones, the other Jones! Felix Jones played second fiddle to Darren McFadden in college, and still put up solid numbers there. Clearly he knows how to make most out of the second spot.

Speaking of McFadden, before the NFL draft there’d been some talk about Dallas wanting to trade up to get McFadden, even if it meant dealing Barber. The fact that they even considered a move like that illustrates that the team just isn’t sold on the guy as their top back. If his employer isn’t ready to depend on him to be their #1 player, neither should you.

Lester’s Ruling
Well, this is basically a draw to me.  I don’t see MB3 as a top 3 RB, but I do feel he is worthy of being a #1 RB.  The thing I like about Barber is his TD production.  He’ll still have to share carries with Felix Jones, but the red zone is his.  Barber basically has a free pass when he gets down there because you have to worry about T.O. and Witten.  Jones will have to break off a long run to reach paydirt.  If pressed to choose I’d say Awesome wins this by a hair.

One thing I can’t wait to do is make my fantasy football Out on a Limb picks again when the season kicks off.  I scour the rosters to select a player who I feel will outperform a higher profile player in that given week.  I base my decisions on matchups, how the players are trending, and the ever-important hunch.  To mix things up I’ll occasionally do some two on one matchups or even pit RB or WR duos against each other.  Sometimes I’ll spot a player some points. 

Since the third preseason game is the closest to an actual game, I’ll use this opportunity to get prepared for the season as well.  I’m going 1 Quarterback, 1 Running Back, and 1 Wide Receiver. 

6 points for rushing or receiving TD
4 points for a passing TD
0.1 points per yard for rushing or receiving
0.05 points per passing yard. 

Brett Favre
over Aaron Rodgers +6
This won’t be the last time I pair up these two forever linked QBs.  Brett is going to do a bit more throwing this week to get him in tune with the new offense.  If he’s not on his back from a strong Giants pass rush, he should be able to get rolling.  Meanwhile, Rodgers will go into Denver, which is not a fun place to play even in the preseason.  I’ll spot Rodgers six points and roll with Brett.

Running Back
Larry Johnson
over Brian Westbrook
LJ has been getting more work the Westy, and I see that trend continuing this week.  Plus, LJ gets to face Miami while Westbrook goes up against New England. 

Wide Receiver
Brandon Marshall
over Randy Moss
With Marshall out the first couple weeks of the season, it is important he gets his work in now with Jay Cutler.  He torched Pacman Jones last week.  This week he goes against the Packers.  They have great DBs, but I’m guessing Marshall gets his.  Alternatively you have Randy Moss, who won’t be catching balls from Tom Brady, and has little to no motivation to get up for this game.  Moss has been known to play when he wants to, and this won’t be one of those weeks.

Pay the Fan Update

20 August 2008

I previously mentioned Pay the Fan (www.paythefan.com) weekly fantasy football game.  I have an exciting update.  Now you can join The Fantasy Sports Forum‘s Pay the Fan League and receive a $5 discount.

As I mentioned it’s a weekly game that allows you to pick your lineup out of the entire fantasy football pool. The catch is you can only use each player twice during the course of the year so you can’t mindlessly plug in Tom Brady, LT, and Adrian Peterson every week.  A starting lineup consists of a QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, a TE, a K, and a DST.  Pretty standard lineup so fantasy footballers will be familiar with it. 

The scoring looks like this:

Join the Fantasy Sports Forum League (for a $5 discount) before the season kicks off to be eligible for the Grand Prize of $250,000.  

What would a fantasy football game be without the ability to stir the pot against your rivals?  Well Pay the Fan has that covered with their Smack Board.  You can taunt your opponents as you dominate them. 

So you get to play a simple fantasy football game with $10K weekly payouts and a $250K Grand Prize.  That’s got to cost a pretty penny, right?  Not exactly.  The full season cost is $64.95.  If you break it down, that’s $3.82 per week (17 week seasons).  That’s like playing $0.55 a day in the lottery.  Only, your odds are much better here, especially when you consider your fantasy football knowledge will give you an advantage.  Here is a look at the Full Season Prizes:

Here’s a look at Last Year’s Winners:

Sign up today and it could be you collecting the riches!

 | Posted by | Categories: Fantasy Football, NFL | Tagged: Fantasy Football, NFL |

With the 2008 NFL Season ready to kick off in a few weeks, I decided it was a good time to get my predictions out there.

MVP: Adrian Peterson
I think the Vikings will win the NFC North and All Day will run for 1800 yards and 12 TDs.
Runner Up:  Peyton Manning

Offensive Rookie of the Year: Jonathan Stewart
It is Darren McFadden’s Award to lose, and I think he’ll do just that.  Oakland won’t fully tap into Run DMC’s potential.  Meanwhile, Jonathan Stewart will run wild for the Panthers.
Runner-up:  McFadden

Defensive Rookie of the Year: Jerod Mayo
Mayo will pile up the tackles and big plays for the Patriots.
Runner-up:  Glenn Dorsey

Comeback Player of the Year: Ricky Williams
He could be the feel-good story of the year in the NFL.  From Riches to Rags to Riches again.
Runner-up:  Deuce McAllister

Defensive Player of the Year: Jared Allen
With Pat and Kevin Williams taking attention away from Allen, he could challenge Strahan’s Sack record.
Runner-up:  Patrick Willis

Most Improved Player: Robert Meachem
Meachem could explode on the scene for the Saints to the tune of 80 catches for 1000 yards and 6 TDs.
Runner-up:  Ted Ginn, Jr.

Coach of the Year: Jack Del Rio
The Jags just keep improving.  They nearly knock off the Colts in the AFC South.
Runner-up:  Mike Tomlin

All-Lester First Team
Peyton Manning
Adrian Peterson
LaDainian Tomlinson
Reggie Wayne
Terrell Owens
Jason Witten
Neil Rackers

Postseason Predictions:
AFC Division Winners:
Indianapolis Colts
New England Patriots
Pittsburgh Steelers
San Diego Chargers

AFC Wildcards:
Jacksonville Jaguars
New York Jets

NFC Division Winners:
Dallas Cowboys
Minnesota Vikings
New Orleans Saints
Seattle Seahawks

NFC Wildcards:
Philadelphia Eagles
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Super Bowl:
New England Patriots over New Orleans Saints

Week 1
Colt Brennan (WAS) – 9/10, 123 passing yards, 2 TDs
Marcus Mason (WAS) – 18 carries, 98 yards & 16 carries for 80 yards
Calvin Johnson (DET) – 4 catches, 78 yards
Brett Ratliff (NYJ) – 14/20, 252 yards, 2 TDs
David Clowney (NYJ) – 4 catches, 163 yards, 2 TDs
Martin Rucker (CLE) – 5 catches, 70 yards
LaMont Jordan (NE) – 19 carries, 76 yards, TD
Robert Meachem (NO) – 4 catches, 129 yards
Garrett Wolfe (CHI) – 9 carries, 64 yards, 1 catch, 25 yard
DeSean Jackson (PHI) – 5 catches, 51 yards
Seneca Wallace (SEA) – 15/20, 165 yards, 3 TDs
Louis Rankin (OAK) – 8 carries, 91 yards
Josh Morgan (SF) – 4 catches, 68 yards
Billy McMullen (WAS) – 6 catches, 55 yards
Jared Lorenzen (INDY) – 12/23, 117 yards, 2 TDs
Decori Birmingham (CAR) – 17 carries, 70 yards
Jacob Tamme (INDY) – 5 catches, 57 yards
Roddy White (ATL) – 5 catches, 47 yards, 1 TD
Michael Bennett (TB) – 19 carries, 74 yards, TD, 4 catches, 16 yards
Quinton Ganther (TENN) – 8 carries, 115 yards, 2 TDs
Chris Johnson (TENN) – 6 carries, 77 yards, TD
Dane Looker (STL) – 4 catches, 73 yards
David Anderson (HOU) – 6 catches, 67 yards
Jacob Hester (SD) – 13 carries, 49 yards, 2 TDs
Miles Austin (DAL) – 5 catches, 64 yards

Week 2
Trent Edwards
(BUF) – 9/11, 104 yards, 2 TDs
Robert Royal (BUF) – 2 catches, 20 yards, 2 TDs
Tony Hunt (PHI) – 5 carries, 79 yards, TD
DeSean Jackson (PHI) – 7 catches, 71 yards
Adimchinobi Echemandu (OAK) – 3 carries, 77 yards
Lavelle Hawkins (TENN) – 2 catches, 70 yards, TD
Brett Ratliff (NYJ) – 13/19, 148 yards
Rock Cartwright (WAS) – 6 carries, 90 yards
David Clowney (NYJ) – 4 catches, 59 yards
Chad Henne (MIA) – 17/26, 133 yards
Todd Bouman (JAX) – 9/13, 126 yards, TD
Ricky Williams (MIA) – 10 carries, 43 yards, TD
Ted Ginn, Jr. (MIA) – 4 catches, 58 yards
Ryan Hoag (JAX) – 3 catches, 71 yards
Ray Rice (BAL) – 8 carries, 77 yards, TD
Martin Nance (MINN) – 3 catches, 74 yards, TD
Michael Turner (ATL) – 4 carries, 113 yards
Jacob Tamme (INDY) – 3 catches, 57 yards
Larry Johnson (KC) – 14 carries, 61 yards
Tim Castille (ARI) – 4 catches, 45 yards, TD
Jacob Hester (SD) – 12 carries, 59 yards
Antonio Pittman (STL) – 9 carries, 67 yards
Randy McMichael (STL) – 3 catches, 54 yards
Matt Schaub (HOU) – 14/16, 187 yards, 2 TDs
Drew Brees (NO) – 12/17, 147 yards, 2 TDs
Kevin Walter (HOU) – 6 catches, 100 yards, TD
David Anderson (HOU) – 3 catches, 61 yards
Lance Moore (STL) – 3 catches, 65 yards
Brad Johnson (DAL) – 9/12, 114 yards, TD
Jay Cutler (DEN) – 16/20, 178 yards, TD
Brandon Marshall (DEN) – 6 catches, 59 yards, TD
Eddie Royal (DEN) – 2 catches, 67 yards
Josh Morgan (SF) – 5 catches, 114 yards, TD
Justin Forsett (SEA) – 15 carries, 136 yards, TD
Jordan Kent (SEA) – 4 catches, 50 yards
Kellen Davis (CHI) – 3 catches, 55 yards, TD
Ryan Fitzpatrick (CIN) – 11/14, 111 yards, TD
John Standeford (DET) – 4 catches, 85 yards
Calvin Johnson (DET) – 3 catches, 76 yards, TD
Jerome Simpson (CIN) – 5 catches, 114 yards
Ken Dorsey (CLE) – 9/11, 143 yards, TD
Brady Quinn (CLE) – 7/12, 124 yards, TD
Eli Manning (NYG) – 4/7, 52 yards, 2 TDs
Danny Ware (NYG) – 10 carries, 97 yards
Domenik Dixon (NYG) – 4 catches, 63 yards, 2 TDs
Syndric Steptoe (CLE) – 3 catches, 80 yards, TD

You’ve seen the Sleepers.  Now it’s time to explore the players who I feel will be disappointments to fantasy football owners. 

Ben Roethlisberger – Will he have a good year?  Probably.  Will he have a great year?  Not likely.  I don’t put Big Ben on another 32 TD, 11 INT year.  Sorry.  He was 3rd in TD Passes last year and 14th in Passing Yards.  That bothers me a little.  Pittsburgh is traditionally a Run First team.  WIth the addition of Rashard Mendenhall to compliment Willie Parker, I think you’ll see a deeper running attack next year.  As for the flurry of TD passes?  I’m just not buying it.  He still should be a good QB next year, but don’t expect him in the Top 6 again.

David Garrard – I like Garrard a lot.  I really do.  I think he does what it takes to win in this league.  There will be owners taking him ahead of Jay Cutler, Philip Rivers, Eli Manning, and several others.  The problem is, Jacksonville is a Run First team as well.  He averaged 209 yards passing and 1.5 TDs per game last year.  What saved him was the low INT total (3).  Do I see another 6-1 TD:INT ration from Garrard again?  Nope.  Sure don’t.

Tom Brady – Brady will have another fantastic year, but if you are expecting even 4500 yards and 40 TDs you may come away disappointed.  A more realistic season for Brady would be 4200 yards & 36 TDs.  If you can live with that from a late-first/early-second round pick, then by all means take him.

Derek Anderson – I like Anderson, but I need to see proof that it wasn’t a fluke before I invest an early pick in him.  I know this.  He (or Cleveland) won’t be sneaking up on anybody this year.  They will be better equipped to deal with what’s coming.  Just looking at his splits is enough of a reason to raise some red flags for me.
Games 1-8:  91.7 rating, 2108 yards, 17 TD, 9 INT
Games 9-16:  73.7 rating, 1679 yards, 12 TD, 10 INT

How about his performance in the fantasy playoffs (Weeks 14-16)?  He averaged 191 yards, 1.3 TDs, and 1.7 INTs.  Are those numbers that are going to bring you fantasy glory?  I didn’t think so.  What’s worse is they came against the Jets, Buffalo, and Cincinnati.  Not exactly your Powerhouses last year.  One contributing factor is the weather.  Cleveland is cold.  They get a lot of wind and snow.  Next year they play in Philly Week 15 and at home against Cincy Week 16.  You think they could have some weather to deal with?  Yeah, me too.

Running Backs
Steven Jackson
– Up until a couple weeks ago I would have said S-Jax is in line for a big turnaround.  His holdout scares me though.  After being burned by Larry Johnson last year, I have little faith in RBs who hold out.   They don’t get in game shape and then they get hurt.  I won’t be party to that again this year.

Brandon Jacobs – He’s big.  Real big.  Shouldn’t he be the one hurting DBs and LBs?  He’s also in a crowded backfield.  Ward and Bradshaw both looked good last year.  I’m afraid there will be too much sharing for the G-Men.

Ryan Grant – Take Brett Farve out of the mix.  Add basically a rookie QB.  Can you say “eight men in the box”?  That’s what I’d do until Aaron Rodgers proves he can handle the load.  Taking away Brett Favre from the mix leaves a lot of questions.  Until they are answered I’ll be taking a comparable back.

Ricky Williams – If you are taking Ricky because you think he may still have “it”, then I’d say you’ve been using the very stuff that got Ricky in trouble in the first place.  He hasn’t played in the NFL (besides 6 carries last year) since 2005.  That’s a long time, especially in Running Back years.  I’d rather take someone with a little more upside than Ricky.  Not to mention the constant threat his season goes “Up in Smoke”.
Update:  He’s looked good so far, but I’m not fully convinced.

Wide Receivers
Anquan Boldin
– Boldin isn’t happy about his contract.  He has also had a hamsting issues thus far.  That’s a recipe for disaster in my book. 

Santana Moss – The Redskins brought in a couple of high-profile rookie WRs in Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly.  I wouldn’t be too keen on that if I were a Santana Moss owner.

Javon Walker – He nearly retired.  Extreme Buyer Beware!

Derrick Mason – There is no way he can match last season numbers.  No way.

Greg Jennings – No way do I see him coming close to matching 2007 production with Aaron Rodgers instead of Brett Favre.

Reggie Williams – He won’t come close to 10 TDs like he had last year.  Look elsewhere. 

Tight Ends
Donald Lee
- Lee is another Packer that is going to miss Brett Favre.  He had 575 yards and 6 TDs a season ago.  I’d be shocked if he came close to those lofty numbers.

Chris Baker – Let’s see, Favre is reunited with Bubba Franks and the Jets took Dustin Keller in the first round out of Purdue.  He missed eleven days of camp with a bad back, as well as some offseason programs as he was mad about his contract.  Those negatives are beginning to add up.

Desmond Clark – With the emergence of Greg Olsen, Desmond Clark won’t be leaned on as much.  I don’t see another 545 yards from him this year.

 | Posted by | Categories: Fantasy Football, NFL | Tagged: busts, Fantasy Football, NFL |


The results are in for RotoNation and The Big Lead’s top Fantasy Football Team Names Contest.  There were plenty of entries.  Some were creative.  Some obscene.  Some lame (let’s put Ron Mexico and the dog fighting jokes to bed).  In the end five names stood above the rest.  They were:

Kim Kardashian’s Reggie Bush
Pimpin’ Aint Brees-y
Two and Half Mendenhall
Children of the Zorn
2 Guys 1 Cup

For their creativity these entrants won a complimentary copy of the Draft Analyzyer to help prepare them for their fantasy drafts.  The top vote getter (Kim Kardashian’s Reggie Bush) also earned a guest post on RotoNation

Don’t worry you if you didn’t enter or your team name didn’t get picked, you won’t be left out.  Just enter the Coupon Code:  ROTONATION and you’ll get yourself $15.00 off the Draft Analyzyer.  So everyone’s a Winner.


I have an exciting site to share with you today.  It’s called YouBeQB.com, and it allows you to see if you have what it takes to call the plays to propel your team to victory. 

Here’s a description of what the site has to offer:

Fantasy Playbook (http://www.youbeqb.com/playbook), is a new spin on fantasy football.  In Fantasy Playbook, players take control of teams, create the offensive plan, and compete head-to-head with friends on a weekly basis for cash prizes.

Fantasy Playbook offers both Single Player and League Play. In the Single Player game, you pick your favorite team and test your football knowledge against all other players for the same team.   League Play pits you against five other players by drafting NFL teams, creating playbooks, and setting match-ups.  Cash prizes are part of Single Player and League Play.  In League Play, there’s always a one in six chance to win a prize.

YOUbeQB also offers a real-time version of the game — Fantasy PlayCaller. (http://playcaller.youbeqb.com).   In Fantasy PlayCaller, players interact during live professional football games, matching play for play with the real players on field. 

Go over to YouBeQB.com today and see if you have what it takes to be an Offensive Coordinator in the NFL.

 | Posted by | Categories: Fantasy Football, NFL | Tagged: Fantasy Football, NFL |

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