Archive for the ‘Fantasy’ Category

Fantasy Football Tiers

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

Yet to Draft? Take a look at the exclusive fantasy football tiers list. I know a lot of leagues drafted this weekend, but I couldn’t post these until now or else my friends would always know who I was going to take! These tiers are geared toward non-PPR leagues, so adjust accordingly if receptions earn you extra points. They are meant to balance all circumstances, however. Brandon Marshall, for example, is a Tier 2 or 3 player with a Tier 17 maturity level, so this list takes the risk of him missing the season for some reason into consideration. Regardless, this list should serve as an interesting time capsule to review for accuracy after the season. Enjoy.


Tier One: Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady
Tier Two: Kurt Warner, Aaron Rodgers, Tony Romo, Matt Schaub, Philip Rivers
Tier Three: Donovan McNabb, Jay Cutler, Carson Palmer
Tier Four: David Garrard, Matt Ryan, Trent Edwards, Matt Hasselbeck, Matt Cassel
Tier Five: Brett Favre, Jason Campbell, Ben Roethlisberger, Kyle Orton, Eli Manning, Shaun Hill, Jake Delhomme, Kerry Collins, Joe Flacco, Byron Leftwich
Tier Six: Mark Sanchez, Chad Pennington, Matthew Stafford, Brady Quinn, Marc Bulger, JaMarcus Russell


Tier One: Adrian Peterson, Maurice Jones-Drew, Matt Forte
Tier Two: LaDainian Tomlinson, Michael Turner, DeAngelo Williams, Steve Slaton, Brian Westbrook, Marion Barber, Frank Gore, Ronnie Brown, Brandon Jacobs, Steven Jackson
Tier Three: Pierre Thomas, Chris Johnson, Clinton Portis, Ryan Grant, Darren McFadden, Kevin Smith
Tier Four: Marshawn Lynch, Cedric Benson, Ray Rice, Willie Parker, Larry Johnson
Tier Five: Reggie Bush, LenDale White, Beanie Wells, Johnathan Stewart, Jamal Lewis, Felix Jones, Knowshon Moreno, Joseph Addai, Thomas Jones, Julius Jones, Derrick Ward
Tier Six: Darren Sproles, Leon Washington, Fred Jackson, Donald Brown, LeSean McCoy, Jamaal Charles, Edgerrin James
Tier Seven: Earnest Graham/Cadillac Williams, Ladell Betts, Chester Taylor, Le’Ron McClain, Rashard Mendenhall, Laurence Maroney/Fred Taylor/Sammy Morris, James Davis, Michael Bush, Tim Hightower, Jerious Norwood, Glen Coffee, Tashard Choice, Shonn Greene, Ricky Williams, Willis McGahee


Tier One: Randy Moss, Andre Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Calvin Johnson
Tier Two: Reggie Wayne, Anquan Boldin, Marques Colston, Steve Smith (CAR), Greg Jennings, Roddy White
Tier Three: Chad Ochocinco, Terrell Owens, Vincent Jackson, Dwayne Bowe, Wes Welker, T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Roy E. Williams
Tier Four: Lee Evans, DeSean Jackson, Eddie Royal, Antonio Bryant, Santana Moss, Bernard Berrian, Brandon Marshall, Braylon Edwards, Chris Henry (CIN), Santonio Holmes, Jerricho Cotchery, Donnie Avery
Tier Five: Hines Ward, Donald Driver, Anthony Gonzalez, Torry Holt, Derrick Mason, Kevin Walter, Lance Moore, Steve Breaston, Chaz Schilens, Laveranues Coles
Tier Six: Josh Morgan, Earl Bennett/Devin Hester, Ted Ginn, Jr., Hakeem Nicks, Percy Harvin, Patrick Crayton, Steve Smith (NYG), Justin Gage/Kenny Britt/Nate Washington, Muhsin Muhammad, Domenik Hixon, Robert Meachem


Tier One: Jason Witten, Antonio Gates, Dallas Clark
Tier Two: Tony Gonzalez, Owen Daniels, Greg Olsen
Tier Three: Jeremy Shockey, Kellen Winslow, Chris Cooley, Visanthe Shiancoe, Dustin Keller, Vernon Davis
Tier Four: John Carlson, Anthony Fasano, Tony Scheffler, Kevin Boss, Martellus Bennett, Zach Miller
Tier Five: Heath Miller, Bo Scaife, Brandon Pettigrew

In case anybody out there cares, I mentioned my fantasy drafts took place this weekend. Here are my draft-day rosters heading into the season:

– 10-team $30 buy-in league:
Start: 2 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR, 1 WR/TE, 1 K, 1 DEF, 1 DL, 1 LB, 1 DB

QB: Kurt Warner, Matt Schaub, Byron Leftwich
RB: Adrian Peterson, Frank Gore, Ray Rice, Julius Jones, Laurence Maroney
WR: Calvin Johnson, Vincent Jackson, Bernard Berrian, Chris Henry, Torry Holt, Josh Morgan, Robert Meachem
TE: Antonio Gates, Kellen Winslow
K: Ryan Longwell (Minnesota)
DL: Mario Williams
LB: Patrick Willis
DB: Oshiomogho Atogwe

– 10-team $20 buy-in league (bonus points for each completion, reception, and rushing attempt):
Start: 2 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR, 1 WR/TE, 1 K, 1 DEF

QB: Drew Brees, Trent Edwards, Brett Favre
RB: Clinton Portis, Larry Johnson, Cedric Benson, Knowshon Moreno, LenDale White, Ladell Betts, James Davis
WR: Reggie Wayne, Terrell Owens, Dwayne Bowe, Chris Henry, Torry Holt
TE: Martellus Bennett
K: Nick Folk (Dallas)

And finally, for what it’s worth, the three players I didn’t get in either league that I find myself coming out of draft weekend really wishing I had? Anquan Boldin, Kevin Smith, and Vernon Davis.

College Fantasy Football

Sunday, August 9th, 2009

Thought I’d try this on for size.  I don’t follow college football nearly as closely as the NFL, so I figured joining a league might help me pay more attention to it.  10-team league, draft round in parentheses:

QB [1]: Taylor Potts, Texas Tech (3); Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State (10)
RB [2]: Jahvid Best, Cal (1); DeMarco Murray, OU (5); Chris Brown, OU (11); DuJuan Harris, Troy State (14)
WR [3]: Dez Bryant, Oklahoma State (2); Ryan Broyles, OU (6); Kevin Jurovich, San Jose State (8); Phillip Livas, Louisiana Tech (9)
TE [1]: Cody Slate, Marshall (7)
K [1]: Ross Evans, TCU (12)
DEF/ST [1]: USC (4); Texas (13)

Opening a topic on this in the forum since I’d love to know more about this team’s strengths/weaknesses. Before you even say it, I agree that taking USC so high was a mistake. I saw a couple of other people draft a defense so I thought maybe that was the way to go in the college game.

Three examples of free agents that could be picked up (not sure who I’d want to drop, but I guess DuJuan was my last pick. Obviously Texas is my reserve defense, but USC has two bye weeks … ) are QB Riley Dodge (North Texas), WR Brandon Collins (Texas), and TE Weslye Saunders (USC).

Fantasy Football Breakout Candidates

Friday, August 7th, 2009


-Tony Romo, DAL: I often hear people defend their claim that so-and-so is not going to be a great fantasy QB this year because he plays in a “run-heavy offense.”  Whether a team runs 40% or 60% of the time hardly matters as much as whether that offense is good and sustains drives.  Consistently moving the chains means that team will run more total plays and also will be in scoring position more often.  I’m not even sure Terrell Owens was that big of a problem for this team, but whatever negative effect he may have had on Romo (and others) is gone.  And as for the positive effect he had?  Romo is not lacking for explosive weapons in the passing game with Roy Williams, Jason Witten, Martellus Bennett, and Miles Austin.  “Smash, Dash, and Tash” will keep defenses very honest, and this team should be lethal when operating out of the two tight end set.  Throw in the fact that everyone around training camp this year feels the intense desire radiating from Jerry Jones to open the new stadium with a highly successful campaign, and, yeah, this team will score.  A lot.

-Trent Edwards, BUF: Terrell Owens and Lee Evans?  That’s hard to cover.  Everyone has seen what Evans can do as a deep threat, but defenses have been shading enough help to his side the last couple of years to contain his game-breaking ability.  Would you have been overly concerned about Josh Reed?  But now, Owens will demand the same treatment, and defenses simply won’t be able to provide it to both sides with the backfield duo of Marshawn Lynch/Fred Jackson also looming.

-Jason Campbell, WAS: The guy is not that bad.  Owner Dan Snyder may fantasize about Brett Favre, Jay Cutler, and other big ticket names, but this is a solid player in a solid offense who is being overlooked.  He has demonstrated consistent improvement (both statistically and “to the eye”) each year he’s been in the league.  He is in a contract year.  And this will be his first time entering training camp without a new offensive coordinator/system to learn.  There’s a lot to like here.

-Sage Rosenfels, MIN: Should win the battle with Tarvaris Jackson and defenses will have to focus on stopping AP.  But it’s always a concern that his head coach looks like a child molester.

-Jake Delhomme, CAR: Oh he’ll make bone-headed mistakes, but this is another guy on a good team with explosive weapons around him.

-David Garrard, JAX: Bounce-back year.

-JaMarcus Russell, OAK: Not saying they’ll be good, but Oakland will not be nearly as embarrassing as in recent memory.  Don’t forget, he’s a former #1 overall pick.


-Julius Jones, SEA: Going quite late in drafts, yet he is a featured back!  T.J. Duckett might steal some goal-line snaps, but with Maurice Morris now out of the picture, JJ will man the backfield most of the time for the Seahawks.  And this Seattle squad is looking like one of the league’s biggest comeback stories, with their receiving corps now healthy and bolstered by the addition of new #1 T.J. Houshmandzadeh.  Factor in a healthy Hasselbeck, a solid defense, and a fiery coach in Jim Mora, and this team could end up being a nice place to be a RB.

-Johnathan Stewart, CAR: DeAngelo Williams proved his worth in a huge way last season, but all along the coaching staff was trying to evolve the Panthers’ running game into a “thunder & lightning” attack that featured their two distinct backs.  Stewart’s nagging injuries were the only thing that prevented this from happening in full force.  DeAngelo will still be the lead back, but don’t let his huge 2008 dispel the notion that Stewart will do even more this year than he did during his rookie campaign.

-Jerome Harrison, CLE: I don’t doubt Jamal Lewis’ heart, but I do doubt that Eric Mangini will want to watch him plod along for 16 games while Harrison is ripping through holes in practice.


-Torry Holt, JAX: Not finished yet.  He withered last year amongst the imploding mess in St. Louis, but his precise route-running will make him the apple of David Garrard’s eye.  Keep your eye on WR Mike Walker as well.

-Justin Gage, TEN: With a reliable deep threat opposite him in Nate Washington, Gage should have a slightly easier go of it this year as Kerry Collins’ #1 receiver.  And with their running game firmly established, the Titans will be looking to throw more to keep opponents off-balance.

-Chaz Schilens, OAK: Big, talented, and more ready than the other Oakland wideouts.  Oakland’s defense will get them the ball, and making sure they have at least a respectable passing attack will be priority #1 for new head coach Tom Cable.

-Devin Thomas, WAS: Promoted to the #2 receiver spot over Antwaan Randle El.  And while finding A.R.E.’s replacement was becoming a need for the ‘Skins, this is clearly an indication that Thomas showed up to training camp looking ready to make things happen.

-Earl Bennett, CHI: Devin Hester is fast, but he’s not a natural receiver.  And Jay Cutler is not the most patient person in the world.  Cutler and Bennett lit it up as college teammates at Vanderbilt, and you can bet the Bears’ new QB will be looking Bennett’s direction every time his Hester has run himself out of the play.


-Vernon Davis, SF: Mike Martz does not think tight ends are meant to catch the ball.  Davis certainly needed to improve in certain areas upon entering the league (e.g. focus, route running), but Martz was his chief obstacle to success last year.  New offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye says, “We would like to use him not as much in blocking in pass situations as we would running routes.”  Looking at the other receiving options in San Fran (especially with Michael Crabtree making sure that he’ll be behind from the get-go), Davis is primed for numbers.

-Martellus Bennett, DAL: I’m not sure he’ll catch as many balls as some people are projecting, but he will be on the field a lot and he will have plays called for him around the goal line to take advantage of his basketball frame.


I’m not that bored.


This includes Cedric Benson, Roy E. Williams, and Vince Young.  I personally watched all these guys play in college, culminating in Young’s 4th-and-5 scramble to win the 2006 Rose Bowl, and trust me (it’s not just all the alcohol speaking here): these are some incredible football players.  Now Benson may be a dumbass – I don’t really know.  But he is the unquestioned RB on a revitalized CIN team.  1,000 yards and 7 scores is the floor here barring injury.  Williams played his high school state championship game in Texas Stadium and he has got to be thrilled to be the go-to WR for the Dallas Cowboys.  And Vince may not get a chance to play much this year, but just don’t count him out.  He is special.  After all, he is now two covers removed from the Madden curse so maybe he’s fianlly getting back on track.

(By the way, other NFL players on that UT team: Jamaal Charles, Brian Orakpo, Michael Huff, Selvin Young, Cedric Griffin, Aaron Ross, Limas Sweed, David Thomas, Quan Cosby, Ahmard Hall, Lyle Sendlein, Tony Hills, Michael Griffin, Johnathan Scott, Justin Blalock, Tarell Brown, Rashad Bobino, Chris Ogbonnaya, Franklin Okam, Kasey Studdard, Brian Robison, Henry Melton, Rodrique Wright, and Marcus Griffin.  Colt McCoy will soon join that list.  Wow.)

Technical Difficulties

Saturday, August 1st, 2009

I know we promised more regular posts. I assure you that plan has not been scrapped like the Pirates’ 2009 season.

When you’re building a house, the foundation is the boring part that nobody will see but nonetheless is worth the most effort. Same deal with maintaining a website. We’re trying to get a few tweaks done behind the scenes before we really graduate to content.

I can tell you, however, that I am officially dialed in to fantasy football. Depth chart following my first draft:

QB [1]: Warner; Hasselbeck
RB [2]: Slaton; Barber; Benson; FJones
WR [3]: RMoss; Roy E. Williams; Gage
TE [1]: Winslow; VDavis
K [1]: Folk
DEF [1]: DAL

This is subsequent to a draft-day trade of RBush + Braylon for Slaton. So I’ve got one free agent spot (need to find a WR2/3 – I wish FA Miles Austin was good enough to do the trick) to play around with and the team is already Cowboy-heavy. What a beautiful time of year.