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FF In The Groin
Week 13

Since when did 150 yards become the new measuring stick for a good receiving day? I missed that memo.

Groin Shot of the Week Candidates

Brian Westbrook (11-156, 3 TD) - Oh, and apparently he chipped in a few rushing plays too for 37 yards. He is a RB in case it isn't apparent from the stat line. I don't know what to think about this guy. Back in preseason I was high on his prospects and drafted him on a few teams. He proceeded to do pretty much diddly for 9 weeks. I traded him (I really should put up a huge sign in my office all fantasy season that says, "No Trades Today!") and now he has rattled off 7 TDs in the last 3 weeks. Typical.

Drew Bennett (3-124, 3 TD) - So much for that new and improved Colts defense I heard a few different sources talk about last week, at least for the first quarter on this game. They shutout the Titans the rest of the way, but it is still pretty annoying to see the 3 catches for 3 TD stat line for Bennett running across the bottom of every football telecast all day, starting from what seems like 5 minutes after you sit down, when you know your opponent has him in.

Kevin Jones (26-196, 1 TD) - Finally some return on investment from Jones who has slowly been creeping up the rankings the past few weeks. Let's keep it rolling through the fantasy playoffs here Kevin! Boy, am I surprised the Lions knocked off a team led by John Navarre and Larry Croom. Not!

150+ Yard Receivers (7 of them, plus Westbrook makes 8) - Since when did 150 yards become the new measuring stick for a good receiving day? I missed that memo.

 Player  Rec  Yds  TD
Muhsin Muhammad 10 179 1
T.J. Houshmandzadeh 10 171 1
Chad Johnson 10 161 2
Terrell Owens 8 161 1
Joe Horn 8 160 2
Torry Holt 10 160 1
Brian Westbrook 11 156 3
Brandon Stokley 8 153 1

And this doesn't even include a couple players who just missed the cut, like Eddie Kennison and Ronald Curry, or the guys who chipped in a multiple TDs with more traditional 100 yard totals like Bennett, Lee Evans and Antonio Bryant. Year of the TE indeed, but week of the WR!

Groin Mail

Hey Mike, don't hate on the Steelers and Big Ben because if they played your Bills, the Steelers would kick them so hard you would wish Jim Kelly would come out of retirement so you would have a decent QB. Beating up on the pathetic NFC West is not the kind of thing you brag about.

- Russ

Oh, believe me Russ I was wishing for Kelly to come back more than once early this season, and I know the NFC West is pitiful beyond belief. I'm pretty sure I mentioned that. I love Big Ben. I'm envious you guys are in a great spot to watch him lead your team for years to come. Truthfully, it might be better in the long run if the Steelers do lose one soon to take the pressure of "the streak" off him. Or if you want to wait until week 17 at Buffalo, I'm fine with that too.

Mike, I enjoy your column. Regarding your comment about watching games on tape rather than live, if you want the ultimate: TIVO!!!! I've programmed in a 30 second skip button perfect to blast through an entire game in about 30 to 45 minutes. You watch a play, hit the 30 second skip, and the next play appears instantly. Four quick pops on the skip button takes you instantly through a 2 minute commercial break. Tivo is the greatest consumer electronics invention ever. My wife was initially skeptical and even now she is a believer (not because of the football benefits mind you). Highly, highly recommended.

Best, Stuart

Pack your bags Sarah, you, me and Megan are moving South!

Comments From The Couch

  • Only 3 TDs Peyton? What's with that, ya bum!

  • I was doing well spinning the Brandon Stokley start or bench roulette wheel the past couple weeks. I sat him down against the Bears (1-7, 0 TD) and then started him on Thanksgiving (5-57, 3 TD). Sat him this week though. That's why they call it gambling folks.

  • Everyone who benched Clinton Portis this week raise your hand. Okay, now I'm going to type the remainder of this article with my nose as I actually benched Portis in two leagues. Sometimes good depth is a curse I tell you. A curse!

  • Not only has the AFC kicked the crap out of the NFC this year in head-to-head games (32-18 advantage AFC), but how about even this week with all in-conference games from an entertainment perspective? The headline NFC games in my area, ATL-TB - Yawn! and GB-PHI - Blowout! Plus any of NYG-WAS/SF-STL/ARI-DET - Boring! Meanwhile DEN-SD came down to the wire, KC-OAK went back and forth, PIT-JAC was a nail biter and BUF-MIA was just nutty.

  • Went out Sunday morning with the family to get some portraits done for Christmas, which involved an hour and a half wait so I missed all the late breaking news before kickoff, and then later in the day (while taping the DEN-SD and GB-PHI games), put up the Christmas lights in freezing cold weather. Is it just me, or do you find yourself swearing a lot more during the holiday season? Merry Christmas!

  • Last week I played against Kelly Holcomb (413, 5 TD) as my deep dynasty league opponent suddenly pulled a starting QB out of his hat where he would have normally taken a zero. This week, same league my opponent chooses 2 from Drew Bledsoe, Chad Hutchinson and Billy Volek, the 2nd, 6th and 10th ranked QBs for the week. These friggin' guys? Nice!

  • In one of my other leagues there is a unique backup QB rule, whereby if your starter leaves the game for any reason, then you can add points for your backup from the next quarter forward. So yesterday I lose Marc Bulger as my starter after he mustered only 1.78 points before his shoulder injury. A lot of good this rule did this week though, as my backup Drew Brees had a grand total of 2.44 for the entire game.

  • Based on these last 2 points, maybe I should have less disdain for kickers and focus more annoyance towards quarterbacks.

  • John Kasay kicks 6 FGs plus 2 XPs on the day, including a 50 yarder attempted after he refused to come off the field when the punt team was called in. This was originally a 40 yarder but pushed back due to penalty. Never mind.

  • Tatum Bell is going to start getting more carries. He quick.

  • Isn't it funny how the Eagles are clearly the class of the NFC BUT no media outlets or websites (that I've seen) are ready to predict them all the way to the Super Bowl? Every time you see the Eagles mentioned their playoff path is qualified as, "should host NFC Championship game", and nothing more due of course to their recent failures in that game. Well, I tell you, they are going to the Super Bowl this year. There you go, I said it. The Eagles get over the hump this time around...

  • Of course, I bet the last thing the Eagles want is the Panthers back in the playoffs this year...

  • But then either one of them would subsequently lose to the Patriots anyway...

  • I reserve the right to change my prior to end of the regular season playoff predictions at any time, so if anyone emails me saying I'm way off base, I'll probably just agree with you.

  • Hey, no mention of Nick Goings in this article so far. What's with that? He topped 100 yards for his 3rd straight game and scored his 4th TD in that time. Between all the available waiver pickups like Nick Goings, Derrick Blaylock, Reuben Droughns, Mewelde Moore, Michael Pittman, Julius Jones, etc., etc., is it really necessary to draft RBs at all?

  • Of course it is. You'd be 0-4 out of the gate before you got your backfield settled, plus what else are you doing to draft, a QB early like Manning or McNabb? Oh, right...

  • I'd love to see the Chargers go the distance as this year's out of nowhere upstart team. It only took 4 long years and plenty of carries, but we can finally (almost definitively) say, welcome to the playoffs Mr. Tomlinson.

  • Another Bills win! In all honesty, they didn't look good, but it is pretty damn difficult to lose a game in which you win the turnover battle 7 to 1. I think I'm going to send A.J. Feeley a nice gift basket. That Pat Williams interception and return for a TD is the funniest thing I've seen in a while.

And The Winner Is…

So many choices, only one award. Can I really give it to Bennett with only 3 catches? In fact, I'm giving it to Bennett because he only had 3 catches. Only 3 catches and all 3 are TDs plus over 120 yards, all earned before 2:00 pm Eastern Sunday so I could sit and stew about it the rest of the day. That is frustrating.