Tony Romo under Center
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I don’t have Tony Romo in my top tier of fantasy quarterbacks. In fact, I have six quarterbacks ranked ahead of him in my early 2011 fantasy football quarterback rankings. While I don’t think Romo will be as good as those six quarterbacks, I think he’ll be a better value.
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Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Michael Vick, and Tom Brady will likely be selected within the first four rounds of fantasy drafts. Meanwhile, Tony Romo will likely go in the fifth or sixth round. If he can stay healthy there isn’t much separating their ability.
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Romo had 36 touchdowns passes in 2007. In 2008 and 2009 he threw 26 touchdowns each year. He was on pace for 29 last year before breaking his collarbone. Romo has a lifetime completion percentage of 64.1 percent and a passer rating of 95.5. He has averaged 269.5 passing yards per game since 2007.
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Romo also has some of the best weapons in the entire league. Not many quarterbacks have a trio of options that can match Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, and Jason Witten. They are all big, fast, and powerful. Throw in Felix Jones and possibly Roy Williams and you have the makings of a very potent offense.
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Romo’s last four games before getting injured were all impressive.
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Week 2:  374 yards, TD
Week 3:  284 yards, two TDs
Week 5:  406 yards, three TDs
Week 6:  220 yards, three TDs
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Drafting Romo is ideal because it allows you to address your running back and wide receiver slots before adding your quarterback. With minimal dropoff from the likes of Rivers, Manning, and Brady, you put yourself in a good spot to compete for a fantasy championship.
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 | Posted by | Categories: fantasy baseball, NFL | Tagged: Fantasy Football, NFL, Tony Romo |


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The NFC East has three established quarterbacks and one messy situation.
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Michael Vick is the number one fantasy quarterback in the division. He’s a bit of a risk in part because of injuries and in part because he’s never had a season like last year. He has the tools to succeed and the weapons around him to flourish, but we won’t know if he still has the drive to be a better quarterback. He’s easily a top tier QB1, but he has more risk than the likes of Rodgers, Brees, Brady, and Manning. Kevin Kolb is one of the better backup quarterbacks in the league. He could find himself traded, possibly to Arizona. He makes a decent QB2 if he’s a starter.
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Tony Romo put up big numbers when he is healthy. Dez Bryant is immature, but he gives Romo another quality weapon. He’s averaged 2699.5 yards and 1.9 touchdown passes per game over the past four years (51 games). His lack of playoff success keeps him from the Brady, Peyton, and Brees discussions, but he is possibly the best value among fantasy quarterbacks because of it.
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Eli Manning reached 4000 yards for the second straight season. Not bad for a team that historically likes to run the football. His career high of 31 touchdowns gives him an average of 29 over the past two years and 25 over the past six. He really formed a nice rapport with Hakeem Nicks and remains a solid QB1 if you want to address other needs or a high-end QB2.
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Then there is Washington. Donovan McNabb is as good as gone, which marks the second straight season he’s been sent packing. I don’t know if he’s a starting caliber quarterback anymore. Even if he finds a new gig, his fantasy days are most likely behind him. Rex Grossman could be brought back, but it appears John Beck could get a chance to show what he can do. This is a situation to avoid. Not only are the QB options mediocre at best, but they are running thin in the playmaker department.
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Boser’s Tweetbeat –
Sifting through the hashtags to bring you the hottest trending Twitter topics in the Fantasy Football industry.
By Ryan Boser
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Clearing the Cobwebs
Austin Collie’s sagging ADP has sparked an impassioned debate throughout the fantasy community. Collie’s currently being drafted as the 20th wide receiver in early mocks, despite being one of the most productive per-game receivers in the league last season. Through six games, he was on pace for a tremendous 144 targets, and a 118CA/1,343YD/16TD bottom line. Obviously, such calculations must be taken with a grain of salt. But 20th? We’re clearly witnessing the power of the concussion risk factor. After those first six games, Collie only set foot on the field three more times in 2010. He was forced from each of those contests prematurely with concussions. Brain injuries. Three times in a seven-week span, Collie lay prone on the field as we held our breaths in horror. And so goes the dispute: Technically, one receiver is just as likely to take a big hit as the next. Conversely, the effects of said hit on a player with past concussions, as opposed to a player with a clean slate, may be very different. What complicates matters even further is that no two concussions are the same, and that we have no clue how many concussions have gone unreported over the last handful of years. Hence, formulating an accurate study for concussion recurrence rates is impossible. Ultimately, what we’re left with is a guy being drafted as a low-end WR2 who produced high-end WR1 numbers when healthy in 2010. Come draft day, how much weight should we be putting on past concussions? Is Austin Collie really more likely to suffer a concussion next season than someone like, say, Reggie Wayne? Right or wrong, our current ADP information suggests severe apprehension in drafting Collie. Personally, I haven’t had the cojones to pull the trigger on Collie in any of the five mocks (@TheDraftmaster) I’ve participated in.
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Smitten with Witten
Last season, Jason Witten had his most productive fantasy campaign since 2007. This offseason his bandwagon is brimming, as the common opinion seems to be that he can only get better when Tony Romo returns. Pump the breaks, folks. Somewhere near the end of Romo’s 2007 breakout season, the quarterback inexplicably began to ignore Witten near the endzone. Dating back to Week 15 of 2007, the road roommates have played 37.25 games together (Romo lasted one quarter of Week 6 last season before breaking his clavicle). In those 37.25 games, Witten’s scored just seven times, resulting in a disgusting touchdown rate (touchdowns/reception) of 3.5%. Enter Jon Kitna. The steam we’re experiencing with Witten was not generated until the 38-year old backup took over. In those next 10.75 games, Witten’s seven touchdowns equaled his total form the previous 37.25 with Romo. As a result, Witten’s touchdown rate spiked from 3.5% under Romo to 10% under Kitna. And while Witten’s looks (targets/game) and YPC didn’t experience much change, his catch rate (catches/target) shot up from 69% to 78%. Witten clearly flourished with Kitna under center, but Dez Bryant’s season-ending injury may have played an even bigger role. Witten scored five times in the Cowboys’ final four games without Bryant. Perhaps you’re beginning to see why I’m leery of Witten’s 2011 prospects. Bryant will be back, pass-catching back Felix Jones’ role is set to increase, and recent history suggests Witten is the latest in a long line of blondish southerners that Tony Romo has lost interest in.
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Future Phenoms
With the fantasy baseball hot stove heating up, and the NFL labor negotiations extending extended extensions, fantasy football speculation has been a bit thin in recent weeks. Amidst the seamheads and suits, however, the NFL Combine and individual pro days have provided dynasty league enthusiasts with plenty of conjecture. Dynasty guru Bryan Fontaine (@Bryan_Fontaine) of Pro Football Focus recently pegged his top five dynasty rookies for 2011. Of course, a lot will depend on where these kids land. With that said, here are Fontaine’s five favorite dynasty draft prospects to keep a close eye on come April 28th (in no particular order): Georgia WR A.J. Green, Alabama WR Julio Jones, Alabama RB Mark Ingram, Illinois RB Mikel LeShoure, and Virginia Tech RB Ryan Williams.
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Ryan Boser has contributed writing and analysis for FantasyVictory.com, KFAN AM 1130′s Fantasy Football Weekly program, and numerous other fantasy football outlets. Ryan’s own website, Out of My League, covers both fantasy football and the Minnesota sports landscape.

Tony Romo under Center
By Cy Holt
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Michael Boley’s collarbone-breaking hit on Tony Romo might have been the best thing to happen to his fantasy owners this coming year.
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Why do I say this?  Romo was lost for the year in week seven and underwent surgery to repair his shoulder. That could make fantasy owners look past him in their fantasy drafts. I mean why take a risk on a player who wasn’t healthy for more than half the year?  Why risk a pick on a quarterback whose shoulder could be damaged and could affect his throwing abilities this year?
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Good. Let them think that…
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Romo is an absolute steal in the fourth or fifth rounds of your draft. In the first  five games of 2010, the Cowboys quarterback threw for nearly 1600 yards and ten touchdowns. Romo averaged 18 fantasy points a game (ESPN standard scoring). Only one quarterback averaged more…the electrifying Michael Vick.
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Dallas QB coach Wade Wilson assured that Tony’s throwing motion was “back to normal”. He added that “he’s throwing great”. Wilson also stated that “his accuracy and acceleration are really, really good.”
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Also in Romo’s holster are three very talented wide receivers.  Miles Austin, Roy Williams, and sophomore Dez Bryant. Bryant is also coming off surgery, but he is expected to return for OTAs (assuming they have them). And did I mention one of the top tight ends in the game, Jason Witten.  Felix Jones, Marion Barber, and Tashard Choice form a three-headed monster at RB, which forces defenses to respect the run, opening up the passing game.
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The fact is many people won’t be willing to take a risk on him. But I know I will. And hopefully it will pay off.


Image courtesy of Icon SMI
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That may seem like a silly question for a player that is tied for eight with 524 receiving yards, but after losing his starting QB, it’s something to consider. That, and the fact that he has just 50 yards in the past two games.
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He really has been hit or miss this year+. When he’s good, like in Weeks 1, 2 and 5, he averages 151.3 yards per game. Unfortunately, when he’s bad, like in Weeks 3, 6, and 7, he averages 22.3 ypg. That’s some serious Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde stuff.
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Besides losing Romo, Dez Bryant is coming on. He has three TDs in the past two weeks, which gives him one more TD on the year than Miles (not to mention the two punt returns he took to the house). Plus, Roy Williams didn’t go away quietly. He has five TDs on the year, though he didn’t catch a ball last week. Through in Jason Witten, who is averaging 77 yards per game over his past three with 2 TDs after a slow start. It’s almost like there are too many mouths to feed.
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That’s before you even consider Felix Jones. The Cowboys desperately need to establish their ground game. Jones has been more active the past three weeks, a trend that will likely continue going forward.
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Obviously he’s too talented to bench, even with Kitna at QB, but if you are deep at WR, or play in a 2 WR league, it may be worth considering it. At least until he proves he’s more like the boon receiver rather than the bust.
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Also check out:

  • Week 8 Get ‘em or Don’t Sweat ‘em Waiver Wire Advice
  • Week 8 Fantasy QB Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy RB Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy WR Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy TE Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy K Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy DEF Rankings
  • Week 8 Fantasy IDP Rankings
  • Week 8 Start/Sit Advice
  • Week 8 Sleepers
  • Written by Eric Stashin of www.rotoprofessor.com

     


    Image courtesy of Icon SMI

     

    Miles Austin may have opened the 2009 season third on the Cowboys depth chart, but he finished among the elite receivers in the game.  The real question is, can he repeat his success or is he a threat for a major regression?

     

    Before we can talk about the future, let’s look at the past.  Austin didn’t start the Cowboys’ first four games, picking up just five catches for 81 yards.  In fact, in Week 3, he failed to catch a pass against the Carolina Panthers.

     

    When Roy Williams suffered an injury, Williams slid into the lineup against the Chiefs on October 11 and never really looked back.  He exploded for 10 catches, 250 yards and 2 TD.  He followed that up two weeks later against the Falcons, catching six passes for 171 yards and 2 TD.

     

    He finished with 81 catches for 1,320 yards and 11 TD.  Among the successes:

     

    • The yards were third in the NFL (first in the NFC)
    • He was tied for fourth in TD among receivers, behind the leaders with 13 (Vernon Davis, Larry Fitzgerald & Randy Moss)
    • He was second in the league in receptions of 20 or more yards with 21 (Andre Johnson had 22)
    • He was third in the league in receptions of 40 or more yards with 8 (DeSean Jackson led the league with 10)

    continue reading »

    Few teams are stacked the way the Dallas Cowboys are. Love them or hate them, you have to respect the talent they have on both sides of the ball. Fantasy owners will be clamoring for the ‘Boys. Here’s a look at how they stack up.


    Fantasy Playoff Schedule
    :  Slightly Difficult
    They are very talented and showed they can win down the stretch. The next step is proving they can do it in the playoffs, but that has no bearing on their fantasy rating. Dallas faces Philly and Washington at home and Arizona on the road. While the match-ups are difficult, the fact that they play two of the games at home help. Weather should not play a role in the games.


    Five Star Fantasy Options
    Tony Romo – He dates extremely hot women. When he’s not playing football, he’s an amazing golfer. He should be easy to hate, but his smile makes it hard to…at least until you face him in fantasy. He threw for 4483 yards last year with 26 TDs to 9 INT. He was good for a 63.1 completion percentage and a 97.6 passer rating. Throw in 105 yards and a score on the ground and you’re looking at one of the top fantasy QBs in the league. One that got another weapon via the draft.

     

    Jason Witten – I’d like to see more than two TDs out of Witten, but he’s easily one of the premier TEs in the league. Over the past six seasons he’s averaged 81.3 catches for 936.3 yards and 4.3 TDs.
    Update:  The Cowboys will make it a priority to get the ball to Witten in the red zone this year according to the Dallas Morning News, which further solidifies him as one of the premier fantasy TEs to target this year.


    Four Star Fantasy Options
    Felix Jones – If the Cowboys didn’t have such a crowded backfield I’d put him as a five star option, but he will have to share with Marion Barber III and Tashard Choice. That said, he is an explosive back that, when healthy, will help carry fantasy teams.

     

    Miles Austin – Clearly he had five star production last year wit 81 catches for 1320 yards and 11 TDs, but he’ll have to prove it before he gets a five star rating from me. Especially when you consider the other weapons at the Cowboys’ disposal. He’s a big, physical receiver that can impose his will on his opponents.


    Three Star Fantasy Options
    Marion Barber – Barber, assuming he’s healthy, will get plenty of touches. He’ll likely be the goal line back as well. Barber is leaner this year, which will give him a burst that was lacking last year. He’s a capable receiver and blocker. He would see increased value if Jones got hurt, but it would be a limited increase as Tashard Choice would be in line for increased opportunities as well.

     

    Roy Williams – I know he’s underachieved in Dallas, but I’m banking on Dez Bryant’s arrival to push Roy. He only had 38 catches for 596 yards last year, but did manage 7 TDs.

     

    Cowboys Defense/Special Teams - The Cowboys aren’t just loaded on the offensive side of the ball. They have a very capable defense. Unfortunately they have a tough schedule (Eagles & Giants twice, Texans, Titans, Vikings, Packers, Saints, Colts, and Cardinals).


    Two Star Fantasy Options
    Tashard Choice – No team in the NFL can boast about a trio of RBs like the Cowboys have. The only thing keeping Choice for three or four star rating is opportunity. He can handle the load if called upon. Unfortunately he’s third on the totem pole.

     

    Dez Bryant – He’s full of talent, but has a little baggage. Well, he came to the right place. Dallas can look past it, especially since it’s nothing major, and get production out of him. Unfortunately there will be a learning curve as a rookie. Not to mention a plethora of options he has to compete with for the football.


    One Star Fantasy Options
    Patrick Crayton – Crayton is almost certain to have a new home in 2010. Depending on where he lands, he could easily see his value jump up to the two or three star range. If he isn’t moved, he just won’t get enough opportunities.

     

    Martellus Bennett – Bennett would need a Witten injury to emerge, but he is a big, talented TE. In the least I expect him to be more of a red zone thread in 2010.


    Click here for additional 2010 NFL Team Previews
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    Roy Williams practice
    Image courtesy of Icon SMI

    Roy Williams changed his number hoping for a reversal of fortunes for the talented WR.  He has a full offseason to work with Tony Romo to establish a rapport that never got on track last year.  Aside from the midseason trade, he battled through a foot injury, had to live in the shadow of T.O. and the pressure of a huge contract for his hometown team, and had to play without Tony Romo because of his injury for three weeks.  Not exactly a smooth arrival to one of the biggest stages in the NFL.

    With all that he went through I’m going to give his 36 catch, 430 yards, 2 TD season a mulligan.  The key will be if he can play more like the WR we saw in 2006 when he had 82 catches for 1310 yards and 7 TDs, or the WR who hasn’t had 900 yards receiving in any other year.  My guess is it’s somewhere in the middle.  I love Roy as a WR3, and could tolerate him as a WR2 if I was loaded elsewhere.  I would take him in the 5th round.  Any sooner I rather go RB, QB, or elite TE.  A healthy Roy Williams should bring 80 receptions for 1100 yard, and 8 TDs.


    Written by
    Eric Stashin the Rotoprofessor

    Last season the Cowboys gave up a hefty bounty to acquire Roy Williams from the Detroit Lions, putting huge expectations on him that he may be able to propel them to the next level.  For the entire season he had 36 catches and 430 yards, but after the deal he had just 19 catches for 198 yards and 1 TD in ten games.

    That’s a huge disappointment, to say the least.  As we approach the 2009 season he enters as the team’s top receiving threat, with Terrell Owens being cut loose in the off season.

    There’s a lot of pressure on Tony Romo to succeed, as many pointed to Owens as one of his major problems.  The feeling was that he felt obligated to consistently force the ball to TO, detracting from his performance and that of some of the other receivers.

    While tight end Jason Witten may be the top receiver for the team, he already had 81 catches and 952 yards in 2008, exactly how much better could he potentially get?  The team is going to have to look to get the ball downfield, and Williams has proven in the past to be capable of doing so.  Let’s not forget his big 2006 campaign, when he had 82 catches for 1,310 yards.  That year he had 24 catches for 20+ yards.

    He’s not going to be a stud in the red zone.  He’s never had more than 8 TD catches in a season, with only 30 in his five-year career.  While the catches and yards are going to rebound, don’t look for the TD to be enough to carry him to the elite levels.

    The other big issue is his ability to stay on the field.  Only once as he played in all 16 games, certainly limiting his potential to post the monster numbers expected from the seventh overall pick in the 2004 draft.

    As for what I would expect from him this season:

    Receiving: 71 catches, 1,075 yards, 7 TD

    Those numbers would make him a solid #2 option in all formats.  I don’t see him as being one of the elite, but with a full training camp to adjust to the offense he should be able to get worked in and flourish as the top receiver in the system (albeit, potentially the second option).

    He said it himself, quoted on CBS as saying, “If I’m coached to do it the right way, I can do it. Just tell me what to do and I can do it, coach. Because, once again, I am a coachable wide receiver who does what he’s coached to do.”

    While he wouldn’t be my top choice to have as my second WR, he certainly is a player that I’d feel comfortable owning.

    What about you?  How do you see Williams performing this season?  Could he emerge as one of the elite?

    Tony Romo under Center
    Image courtesy of Icon SMI

    Tony Romo seems to be in the headlines quite a bit.  Whether he’s breaking up with Jessica Simpson, finishing second in a golf tournament, or watching his favorite ex-WR’s new reality show, Romo has kept his name out there.  In the fantasy world, it’s his game we’re worried about.  The Cowboys are hoping it’s addition by subtraction with T.O. moving on to Buffalo.  Roy Williams gets the opportunity to be the #1 WR with an actual QB.  His favorite target, much to T.O.’s dismay, Jason Witten is ready for another big year.  Patrick Crayton and Miles Austin are decent options at Wideout.  Plus, the Cowboys have a trio of solid backs in Marion Barber III, Felix Jones, and Tashard Choice.  With Jessica out of the picture, perhaps he’ll spend a little less time tending to her needs…not that I blame him.

    Playing in the NFC East he naturally has some tough matchups on his hands.  In addition to the pair of games against the Giants, Eagles, and Redskins he faces Carolina, the Packers and Chargers who I expect to improve dramatically, and the Raiders who are tough against the pass.  The only easy weeks appear to be Weeks 4 & 5 vs. Denver and Kansas City and Week 15 against New Orleans.  Fortunately for Romo and his fantasy owners, the Cowboys should have enough firepower to put up numbers regardless of the matchup.  I’m not thrilled of his playoff matchups against San Diego, New Orleans, and Washington, but not enough to dissuade me from taking him in the 5th or 6th round.  I think he’ll come in somewhere in between his amazing 2007 season and his somewhat disappointing 2008 season with 3800 yards and 28 TDs.  Oh, and he’ll probably add another hot, blonde singer as a girlfriend before the season starts.


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