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Mike MacGregor | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer

HTH Mailbag
Week 10

Here is a mix of interesting questions I received from fantasy players this past week, and the response provided. If you have a question for the HTH Mailbag, just drop me an email.
Note that not all questions will be answered because it just isn't possible to respond to them all. Also there are no certainties in fantasy football. The responses represent one opinion to consider in your final decision managing your fantasy team. Overall, I just Hope This Helps...

Mike, With the trading deadline in my league being this week, I wanted to get your opinion on some trades possibilities. First, I am heavy at WR, but not so good at TE. I have: Randy Moss, Derrick Mason, Eric Moulds, Reggie Wayne, Brandon Lloyd, and Donte' Stallworth at WR and Dallas Clark at TE. Normally I would just try to trade a WR for a TE, but my problem is that with Moss being out for possibly two more weeks, I don't know if I can afford to trade one right now. I'm 5-4 and I can't give away any games, so I'm wondering if you think that I should just sit tight or do you think that I can get enough out of the remaining WRs and my new TE to make a trade worth making now. If so, which WR should I trade?

Second, I was considering trading for a new quarterback. My league gives 6 pts for TDs, but only 1 pt for every 50 passing yards (heavy emphasis on TDs and not yards). I can probably get Trent Green or Brett Favre (both are backups on their teams). I currently have Aaron Brooks. Is it even worth trading for one of these QBs or should I stick with Brooks? I just feel that Green and Favre have a much greater potential for a 3 or 4 TD game. Brooks throws for yards, but you can never expect more than 2 TDs from him, if that.

I know this was a long one, but thanks for the time. Dan
Hey Dan. Didn't we already discuss the TE situation before? In all honesty I'd be happy with Clark. Even though he is splitting with Pollard, Manning is throwing their way enough right now so they are both productive and you can almost count on a TD at least every other week. Not bad for a cheap TE.

If you do a deal for a TE, then I would look to trade Mason from that bunch. If you start 3 WR then it is tenuous but you should be able to hold on until Moss returns assuming no more injuries. Whether to do a deal or not will entirely depend on what kind of bargain you can swing. In a TD focused league though, like I said, Clark ain't bad.

I agree Brooks has been frustrating, but how much better Favre and Green will be is uncertain. If those teams have their way (Packers and Chiefs), then they will run the ball more then pass, so games with either one getting 0 or only 1 TD will happen. I'm not sure it is much of an upgrade to have to pay for one of those guys.

Maybe it would be better to target a higher upside guy who is playing well and the owner may have (a) not paid a lot for him, (b) not have full confidence in yet, and (c) still has as a backup but needs roster help elsewhere (WR). Players I'm thinking about in this category are Drew Brees, Tim Rattay, Jake Plummer, Jake Delhomme, Brian Griese (okay, I never thought I'd be saying to someone think about acquiring Griese). I'd put them in that order of preference too.

Honestly, I think I would be more willing to take a chance on Matt Hasselbeck (who's owner has to be frustrated to date) as well then targeting Favre or Green. Not that you should eliminate them from consideration, but I'm just not that confident in them over Brooks. If I'm way off on what different owners are demanding in return, and you can get Favre or Green (preferably Favre) cheap then do it.

Good luck!
Question: I have Chad Pennington (out 2-4 weeks), and the free agent field is thin. Do I take:

Carson Palmer
Miami QB
David Garrard
Quincy Carter

Tim Rattay is my back-up, so I need to really consider planning if he goes down again. I am intrigued by Garrard's potential.

Thanks, Pat
Thankfully you have Rattay Pat, because he has been putting up starter quality points most weeks, and let's keep our fingers crossed he does stay healthy. I'm intrigued by Garrard too but he could perform at either end of the spectrum and it wouldn't surprise me a bit. I'd go with your instinct and take Garrard. Both Palmer and Carter have bad matchups this week, so should Garrard falter they will likely be available again the following week.
Hi Mike, I loved your stat chart of production by position to this point in the season. The one category I found missing was FGs. I haven't been able to locate any data, but the number of 50-yard plus FGs seems high so far this year. Also, the number of 3 or 4 FG games, but I don't think that is excessive. Anyway, keep writing.

Dan M., Avid but Average Fantasy Player
You may call yourself an average fantasy player Dan, but you've made some astute observations. Here is the data I was able to pull together:

Number Of FGs Scored By Distance
 FG Distance  2001  2002  2003  2004 (9 Wks)
0-29 261 252 276 127
30-39 228 241 228 107
40-49 202 194 207 98
50+ 38 44 45 36
50+ Missed 35 41 47 19

Multiple FG Games
   2001  2002  2003  2004 (9 Wks)
5+ FG games 7 5 6 1
4+ FG games 29 22 23 10
3+ FG games 82 96 87 38
2 + FG games 229 220 234 114

More or less we are at the halfway point, and the number of 50 yard FGs connected on this year is way ahead of the pace from the prior 3 years. There have been 36 already, compared to a low of 38 and high of 45 a season since 2001. The interesting thing is the number of misses from 50+ yards is not any higher then the prior years. So, this tells us that coaches are sending in the kicker for more chances from 50+ then in recent history, and the kickers are getting better at hitting from that distance. Successful FGs from the other shorter distances do not seem drastically different from prior years through the first 9 weeks of this season.

As for multiple FG games, if anything they seem a little less then in the past 3 years. Certainly the 5+ FG games are way off with only 1 so far this year by John Carney back in week 3 against the Rams. Also the 4+ and 3+ FG games are less then half the norm. Off the top of my head, I'm not sure how to explain that, especially in light of more 50+ yard FGs. I'd better go back and check the data. Does it seem like there are more blowouts this year? Or perhaps, more accurately, high powered offenses (Chiefs, Colts, Vikings) scoring TDs early and often so other teams abandon the FG option and try to score TDs to keep up to them? That could be one theory to look into.

I'll have to give this some more thought. Any theories you might have upon consideration of these stats, please send them over.