By Jay Hathaway, FFC Columnist
Hey there again, fellow fantasy dorks! We are now fully all up in week 12, which means for many of you that playoffs are right around the corner, and for others, well, I dunno, go outside and do something productive. I myself have a few teams that aren't going to be around much longer, so I have been trying to pay more attention to my 5-5ish teams, making last minute desperation moves in order to make the final cut. For example, I was severely lacking at RB for one team a couple of weeks ago, so I took a chance on Pats RB Benjarvus Green-Ellis while Sammy Morris was out, and it paid off, until last week, when my benched and forgotten Kevin Faulk got most of the run work. Very annoying. Anyway, I've dropped 'em both now in favor of Bucs RB Warrick Dunn, being that Earnest Graham is done for the season. Also, I can finally start Detroit RB Kevin Smith to fill in some voids as well. It only took 10 weeks for him to get going. Luckily, patience is one of my better virtues.
Week 9 is over and many of us are finding ourselves half-crazy, halfway to gone, half-drunk on the drama that has been the 2008 NFL season. Ah, it seems like just yesterday that the Heartbreak Kid Tom Brady broke the hearts of many a fantasy owner that took him with their oh-so important first pick, going down in the first game with a season-ending injury. Then there was Willie Parker looking like this year's LT right out of the gates, only to fall to injury for most of the first half. Some of you thought that this would be the breakout year for Vince Young and the Titans. Well, you were half right. Then, there were those of us that took the Lions' 4-0 preseason start as a sign of a fantastic year. I believe I actually said to someone, "Our road to the Super Bowl starts in Atlanta!" Sigh. My delusions aside, there have been some really incredible and incredibly dreadful performances that warrant some recognition, an award if you will. Being that I think each player is unique, I have named these awards to personally match the players themselves. I have no actual trophies to hand out, but being mentioned on the pages of a website of such high repute as the FFC is a fine prize in itself. So congrats to those of you savvy owners who found success in the first half, and to those who didn't: There is still time to draft a fantasy basketball team.
Welcome to Week 5’s Pickups/Drops. I’m basing my analysis on Yahoo! League stats as well as my own intuition. This week I’m taking some chances and recommending some risky drops and adds, so here we go.
Week 2 is in the books. That means it’s time to take a look at some guys that are moving up and some that are dropping. I've listed a few players who have rising values and others that are falling. We have players to pick up, bench, and look to trade for.
Moving on up!
QB Donovan McNabb – McNabb is on fire! He has 642 yards in his 1st 2 games. The rookie Jackson is going to keep getting open and Donovan is going to keep finding him. McNabb can only get better as Brown and Curtis come back. I look for Donnovan to be in the top 3 and possibly the top rated quarterback at the end of the season.
QB Trent Edwards – Trent Edwards looks like he could end-up being a top 10 quarterback. He looks poised and confident and he has a strong arm. He has the 7th best QB rating at 107.7. He’s 12th in yards per game at 227. He’s 4th in completion percent at 70.9. If you need a QB and Edwards is still available, go get him right now!
QB J.T. O'Sullivan – It looked this week like the 49ers are starting to get the Martz offense. They still have a way to go. With Bruce and Gore though, all they need is the quarterback and another receiver to get it and they could be off and running. Make sure to keep an eye on this guy and if you're having quarterback troubles in a large league, you may want to pick him up.
RB Jonathon Stewart – Stewart had 14 carries for 77 yards and 2 touchdowns. DeAngelo Williams had 11 carries for 31 yards and no touchdowns. This guy is the complete package. He's much better suited to be the guy on 1st and 2nd and Williams is better suited for 3rd down. I think Stewart will be starting sooner rather than later.
RB Michael Bush – Bush wasn't expected to do much as the 3rd back in Oakland. He didn't have a carry in week 2 until Justin Fargas went down. He then played second fiddle spelling McFadden and had 16 carries for 90 yards and a 32 yard touchdown. This boy can run. If Fargas is out for any length of time, Bush could make an impact. As it is, he should play a lot in the next few weeks. The Raiders are going to run a bunch and with the other back being a rookie, he should get plenty of carries to make an impact.
RB Darren Sproles – This guy has shown that he can handle the load. LT has an injured big toe and Sproles may be doing more running than anyone thought. In week 2, with LT in and out of the lineup, Sproles ran 7 time for 53 yards and had 2 catches for 72 yards and a 66 yard touchdown. If LT is down for any length of time, Sproles will be the man. Even if LT plays, he might not be 100% for a while.
WR Anthony Gonzalez – I think we may have a changing of the guard going on in Indy. Anthony Gonzalez had 9 catches for 137 yards in week 2 while Marvin Harrison had 1 catch for 16 yards. That just about says it all. Look for Gonzalez to be inconsistent, but he should have some big days.
WR Isaac Bruce/Bryant Johnson – They had 10 catches and 231 yards between them. I just keep thinking, “this is Mike Martz! Even if it IS the 49ers, if they buy into it and learn it, they could be huge.” I don't know if I buy it yet, but I've got my eye on them just the same.
TE Tony Scheffler – Scheffler had 6 catches for 64 yards and 2 touchdowns. Jay Cutler is having a break out year. With Marshall and the rookie Royal for defenses to have to contend with, look for Scheffler to have a big year. If this offense if half as good as it's been so far, Scheffler will finish in the top 5, especially in PPR leagues.
TE John Carlson – I was wondering who Hasselback was going to throw to with all of his receivers out. I thought it was going to be Taylor, but he only caught 2 passes for 20 yards. Carlson caught 6 passes for 78 yards. If you need a bye week fill-in or spot starter, he may be your guy. The match-up has to be right, as it is this week when Seattle plays the Rams.
Rams opponents - Anybody in the passing game that plays the Rams. They've given up 655 yards and 6 touchdowns in just 2 games! Start anyone they play until they show they can stop someone. Seattle and Buffalo are up next.
QB Carson Palmer – Palmer and the Bengals offense has been horrible. Palmer only had 134 yards with 2 picks in 27 attempts. That's not too good. They can't run the ball at all. When all you can do is pass and your wide receiver core is banged-up, you're going to have problems. I think they'll get better as the season goes along, but it's going to be a long season overall for Cincinnati.
RB Justin Fargas – Fargas has a pulled groin. He also has Darren McFadden behind him. He would have started for a while, because the Raiders wanted to bring McFadden along slowly, but know he's in the tub. McFadden is a beast and I don’t think Fargas will be getting his starting gig back anytime soon.
RB DeAngelo Williams - Stewart had 14 carries for 77 yards and 2 touchdowns. DeAngelo Williams had 11 carries for 31 yards with no touchdowns. Stewart looks like the real deal and should get more and more of the carries. Williams will be back to 3rd down duties before too long.
RB Fred Taylor – The Jaguars line is just too banged-up. The line is just not opening holes. Drew can still get his in the pass game, but Taylor doesn't get too many passes. I just don't think Taylor will be worth much until the line gets some guys back.
WR Marvin Harrison – See Anthony Gonzalez above. We knew it was coming, we just didn't know it would come this fast. I don't think he's done, I just think that Gonzalez is younger and quicker and is a better compliment to Wayne right now.
WR Chad Johnson – See Carson Palmer above. Chad also has a bum shoulder and he's wearing a harness. It's tough to play receiver with one arm. I think Chad's in for a very tough season. I don't think he'll be any better than a middle of the road receiver this year.
Let me know what you think!
Author: Brad Hess (soflraiders)
Welcome to Pick Ups and Drops - Week One.
If you did not own Tom Brady, feel free to skip below and begin reading. If you did own Tom Brady, take a few deep breaths, breathe, take a walk, buy some ice cream, kick a trash can, pet a puppy... Better? Okay... Let's begin. Caveat – If your league was dumb enough not to draft WR Brandon Marshall (because of his week one suspension), or WR Steve Smith (because of his week one and week two suspension), then run, don’t walk to your waiver wire and pick them up. Now.
That said, here are the post week-one players to look at.
Get off the Ledge
Don’t worry about QB Carson Palmer and his anemic Cincinnati Offence. He looked terrible, but hasn’t had the benefit of much practice time with his favorite weapons as they shook off preseason injuries – not to mention a broken nose and new visor of his own. Give him a mulligan on week one. He’s too good, and so are his receivers, to stay as crappy as he looked. If someone in your league has an itchy trigger finger, see if you can pull a couple moves for either Palmer, WR Houshmandzadeh, or WR Ocho Cinco.
Get on the Ledge
Worry about TE Todd Heap. The perennially injured TE got injured again when he landed funny (not ha-ha funny) on his back. His stat lines 1 catch, 5 yards accurately reflected how he looked on the field. It’s not time to jump yet, since the Ravens will likely be very conservative on the pass and Heap makes a great security blanket… But if the chemistry with rookie QB Joe Flacco isn’t there, and Heap is injury prone… Not good.
QB Tom Brady. Ok… take a deep breath. (Remember? Re-read the start of this article...). Your season isn’t over, but it did just take a kick to the nuts. Life sucks. Give yourself a moment of anger against the gods for forsaking you, and then let it go. If Brady played, he was going to screw you anyway when Billicheck was going to bench him in week 16, after making it look like he’d start, and you were stuck with a zero in your QB column during your playoffs or finals. See? Feel better? Lots of people still win with a crappy QB. Scout the waiver wire, if you need to, make a fair trade - not a crazy trade. You’ll be fine. You probably lost your week, so maybe you’re first on the waiver wire this week and you can grab Cassel. See if you can trade for Carson Palmer after his terrible week one. JT O’Sullivan may be a decent player… Trent Edwards looked ok. Chad Pennington might be available. Just don’t panic and do something stupid like trade Clinton Portis for Marc Bulger. Keep your wits about you, and you’ll be fine. Never say die.
Me? I was playing the guy who had Tom Brady, in one of my leagues. So... it worked out great for me.
Author - Rob Pashko, FFCollective