Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Tuesday Hangover: Steven Jackson did WHAT to the Saints?

While attending the monthly poker game to which I generously donate a small sum of cash, I ran into two fantasy owners who I happened to be playing this weekend. And though they were nicely at 6-1 and I was DOA at 1-6, I mentioned to them that with Aaron Rodgers on bye this week and Wes Welker playing the Steelers he was in for a traumatic beatdown, and don't they wish they had taken Calvin Johnson rather than Steven Jackson in the first round.

It occurs to me now that the moment I declared Jackson a bust I should have picked up my phone and posted a message to all interested fantasy owners and gamblers that Jackson was about to rape the Saints for more than 150 yards and 2 TDs. They fact that he was playing against me may or may not have been enough to bring the aging Ram his biggest fantasy game since the great winter of aught 8 (though so far this year I have have managed to shake Ahmad Bradshaw, Darren McFadden and Marques Colston out of their slumps) but the trash talking guaranteed his success.

This phenomenon puts me in a tricky spot, since I value trash talk as highly as I do winning. Sure, in an important situation I can tone it down for the sake of good karma, but if I had to stop all demeaning comments for a season I'm not sure if the game would be as much fun. Besides, the best laid fantasy plans easily get derailed by injury (Jamaal Charles) generally crappy performance (Chris Johnson) and just plain bad luck (Reggie Wayne). So even when wins are hard to come by trash talk is a constant reminder that there's more to fantasy football than money. There's the camaraderie that comes from telling your opponent you would rather catch the clap than lose to him. The joy of sharing pictures of Arian Foster's X-Rays with the weepy owners who drafted him minutes before he took to twitter. The fellowship of forcing your arch rival to perform menial and possibly degrading draft day chores simply because he failed to come come through on some random wager.

When you are in the cellar there is nowhere to go but up so you might as well talk up a storm.


-Maybe Anquan Boldin can play a little ball after all? 145 yards is handy no matter how you slice it. The end zone would have been nice, but let's not be greedy.

-My friend and I have been involved in a fairly heated debate about Tony Romo. I've had Romo on my team for years and I tend to stand behind him especially in the face of a rabid Redskin's fan who hates everything about the Cowboys. So I can't tell who the bigger loser is this weekend? Romo for sucking the life out of the Cowboys offense or the Redskins who are clearly fighting their way back to the bottom of their division where everyone thought they would be when the season started. Since I'm not a Cowboys fan I think he's more bitter. I can shake off a Cowboys loss as long as the 49ers are winning, and no one says I have to draft Romo in the future, he's stuck with the skins until he dies.

-Speaking of the Redskins, I have to admit that on their rapid descent into the depths of the NFC East they have at least made Fred Davis a valuable fantasy start. The same, however, cannot be said for Ryan Torain or Roy Helu.

-When your fantasy game is on the line and you need a mere 12 points for the win, how many wide receivers do you currently place above Vincent Jackson on a list of players likely to come through in the clutch? 20? 30? By any metric his performance has been miserable. Yardage Bonus? Miserable. PPR? Miserabler. Standard format? Miserablest. I can't tell if he's destroying Philip Rivers or if it's the other way around. But I know that Rivers insisted on forcing the ball into double coverage to find Gates. In case you cared, the answer is 84. Over the past 4 weeks he has been outscored by 84 other receivers in the NFL. Sure, he had a bye, but so did lots of other players. Over those 4 weeks he's totaled 8 fantasy points in standard formats. Dead to me.

-Michael Vick on the other hand has turned into king Midas, including a bye week he's turned in the 7th best QB performance over the last 4 weeks, the only comparable player to do better is Aaron Rodgers.

-Is there anyone not starting Cam Newton at this point? My brother owns Vick and Newton and is somehow having trouble unloading Newton in a trade for guys half his value. At this point in the season you've pretty much seen everything you need to to know that Newton is going to produce points. The guy who picked up Cam in the 15ht round of my keeper draft is sitting on a pure goldmine.

-The one nice thing about drafting in the top four of my keeper league next year is that I'm assured to walk off with LeSean McCoy, Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice or Arian Foster. The question is do I keep Jamaal Charles or is he done?

-Considering it's the year of the quarterback, why isn't it also the year of the receiver? Once you get past Calvin Johnson, Wes Welker and Steve Smith (wow) you get pretty quickly to Greg Jennings who shares the ball with half the city of Green Bay. Pierre Garcon sneaks into the top 10 in WR scoring in some leagues and the Colts aren't even trying to win games. Where is Desean? Roddy? Fitzgerald? Dez? Why are Victor Cruz and Dwayne Bowe in the upper echelon of receivers.


It's been a highly competitive season but it's looking like we are down to 2 finalists. Indy, the presumptive favorite to figure out how to show a negative number in the win column for the first time in NFL history. I don't see nay way the Colts are going to be talked in to winning a game. They don't even care. Indy GM Bill Pollian says he sees no flaws in the coaching job being done by Jim Caldwell which is like Oscar the Grouch finding no flaws with a steaming pile of rat dung. If what you want is rat poop, Caldwell's performance has been a masterpiece. Could you possibly need more evidence than that?

But just because Miami is keeping up appearances by staying close in games does not mean they are not just perfectly content to go 0-fer, but are in fact commit ed tot he cause. All I need in the way of evidence is that they lose at home to the Broncos, and the Broncos might very well be worse team in the game. I'm not sure how they are going to figure out which of these winless teams will earn the right to propose to Luck, but watching them stumble toward their unstated goal is remarkably entertaining. It might be pathetic to watch one team flail helplessly about incapable of winning a game even against other cruddy teams, but watching two moderately talented teams try to lose games without openly declaring that they are tanking brings a level of competition to it. There can be only one worst team in the league after all. At the moment my money is on Indy. Even though the Colts have a slightly tougher SOS (which might make Miami's winlessness more valuable at the end of the year) they're commitment to letting games get safely out of reach is impressive. And Miami won't always have Tim Tebow to pull them from the fire if they get too close to actually winning a game.


I believe in justice, and while I believe that while Tebow has ridden his verve about as far as he can in the sport of football and ought to justly be put out of his misery, I think the bigger dose of justice needs to be saved for the Bronco's fans who begged for this situation. First the didn't listen to the coach who said Tebow didn't have the stuff. Then they failed to pay attention to his atrocious play against a Miami team dead set on losing. Then after this week's putrid performance they are claiming that Fox didn't call the right plays for Tebow to have success - which is like Jimmie Johnson fans demanding that he compete in the Coca-Cola 600 on a Segway then wonder why he wasn't able to maneuver for the victory. The fans wanted this, they booed Kyle Orton onto the bench so they could have it, no they've got it and I hope they enjoy they rest of a very Tebow season.


J said...

The Owners said, "Where is Desean? Roddy? Fitzgerald? Dez?"

As for Roddy and Dez, they are on my roster. No further explanation needed.

I spent the first part of this past weekend in the ER finding out I have a kidney stone, which was just slightly more painful than my fantasy season so far. This week, I was going toe-to-toe with my opponent, right up to the SNF game. I had Dez. He had Vick. Game over.

The fact that I am 3-5 is a miracle on the level of US Hockey 1980. I can mainly thank Schaub and Sproles for that. Yeah, Sproles is my best performer so far.