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20/20 Hindsight - Week 12

As we all know Hindsight is 20/20. This weekly column is devoted to learning from common mistakes and serves as FFToday’s “Fantasy Football Confessional.”

I have Joseph Addai and Marion Barber on one team, but did I choose to play either one of them? You guessed it. This didn’t cost me a victory, but it did cost me the division in the last week of the FFTOC’s regular season. Although I lost out a hundred bucks, I did well enough to advance to the final phase of the tournament and a chance to play for much more.

Here’s a look at my week 12 in the FFTOC as the regular season portion of the tourney winds down:

FFTOC Update
 Pos  Player  Pts  Comments
QB J. Delhomme 12.72 I considered Romo—not hard enough, though.
RB M. Drew 18.5 Glad I used him now, because knowing who is best between him and Fred Taylor isn’t easy.
RB F. Gore 22.5 My RB’s performances at least insured me the opportunity to advance.
WR S. Holmes 3.1 A complete bust despite the Ravens’ having a favorable fantasy pass defense.
WR P. Burress 10.4 Pretty mediocre stuff from a #1 quality fantasy WR.
WR B. Edwards 2.9 Better to disappoint me know than in the next few weeks.
TE D. Clark 0.0 Sprained knee in the first half.
K J. Scobee 6.0 Eh…
DEF Patriots 6.0 Ditto.
  Total 82.12 Congratulations to Hogan’s Alley in Division 079—it was tight all year. You made excellent picks last week to overtake me.

Now that the second phase of the tourney is underway, here’s my remaining pool of prominent players for weeks 13-16. The highlighted players are likely choices for the remaining four weeks:
Remaining Players
Peyton Manning Shaun Alexander Reggie Wayne Desmond Clark Nate Kaeding
Brett Favre Joseph Addai Larry Fitzgerald Chris Cooley Lawrence Tynes
Tony Romo Fred Taylor Darrell Jackson Owen Daniels John Carney
Tom Brady Willie Parker Javon Walker Heath Miller Adam Vinatieri
Steve McNair Willis McGahee Jerricho Cotchery Jermaine Wiggins Joe Nedney
Joey Harrington Deuce McAllister Devery Henderson Bo Scaife Mike Vanderjagt
Eli Manning DeAngelo Williams Donte Stallworth Vernon Davis Olindo Mare
Ben Roethlisberger Laurence Maroney Eddie Kennison Ben Utecht  
JP Losman Mike Bell Marty Booker Marcedes Lewis  
Brad Johnson Ladell Betts Mike Furrey George Wrighster  
Vince Young Cadillac Williams Samie Parker Bryan Fletcher  
Plummer/Cutler Reggie Bush Antonio Bryant    
David Carr Dominic Rhodes Keyshawn Johnson    
    Arnaz Battle    
    Wes Welker    
    Brandon Jones    
    Drew Bennett  
    Matt Jones    
    Ernest Wilford    
    Santonio Holmes    
    Antwaan Randle El    
    Reche Caldwell    
    Patrick Crayton    
    Bryant Johnson    

From purely the standpoint of talent, I’m in great shape at quarterback, decently stocked at running back, better off than I expected at receiver, and not too shabby at tight end or kicker. I think I have enough players to fair well, but as always, it comes down to my weekly lineup choices. Here’s hoping Hindsight is a B---- for the opposition.

Would've (From The Who Would Have Known File)

Tony Romo Would Be An Impact Player Down The Stretch
Sorry, I just didn’t see it despite all the talk in late September. Chris Collinsworth earns more points in my book for calling it ahead of time. Romo’s accuracy on the run has been the difference for the Cowboys. I feel sorry for Drew Bledsoe—tough player, some good but not great years, and Wally-Pipped twice over. With a division game (Giants) and conference game with playoff implications (New Orleans) in the coming weeks, this is probably a great time to play the hot hand. Once Dallas gets Atlanta and Philly, Romo could be playing in meaningless games, making him a tenuous option for those fortunate enough to earn a championship appearance in their fantasy league.

Could've (From The Who Could Have Known File)

Vince Young Would Be An Impact Player Down The Stretch
I’m not so surprised because of Young’s rookie status as much as I am shocked he’s performing well without David Givens, Ben Troupe, and Drew Bennett relegated to a role player. Young has demonstrated his leadership, toughness, and poise will translate to the pro level. Did you see him take that shot to the head on the sideline in the 4th quarter and continue to bring the Titans back? This kid is going to be the next player on the level of McNair and McNabb. I’d love to have Young in a keeper league because his running style is effective but not as reckless as Vick or McNair.

Which Jaguars Runner To Start From Week To Week
I guess the simple answer is “both,” but don’t you get that shaky feeling every week when you look over your roster with one (or in my case both) of them sitting there. I strongly suggest you check out Doug Orth’s new feature. He hit the nail on the head with these two (as well as Westbrook, Thomas Jones, Gore, and Jackson…not as well on Addai, but I can’t blame you for my poor choice—as much as I wish I could) and you should seriously start checking out his analysis for the remaining weeks of the season. I’ve been starting Drew over Cadillac in the SOFA League, but I’ve opted for the safe, yardage play of Taylor in the Fantasy Auctioneer Experts Invitational . Honestly, your guess is as good as mine—I’m listening to Doug.

Should've (From The I Knew I Should’ve File)

Started Addai Or Barber III Over Bush This Week
This one just kills me because I couldn’t control my tendency to pick the long shot (and accurately predict the breakout game) over the surer things. As a result I missed two breakout games that could have further solidified my points lead in my ultra-competitive local league. Fortunately, my opponent’s #2 RB was Mike Bell so the typical LT game didn’t hurt me. Does this mean Addai will be the featured back from here on out? I don’t think he’ll get Larry Johnson-LT-Shaun Alexander carries, but he should be good for 15-20 touches per contest. That works for me.

Marion Barber III is one of my favorite players to watch because he plays smart football. It’s even better he plays for a coach that appreciates his game. The numbers just don’t lie when it comes to Barber’s outlook for the rest of the year. Unless Romo goes down or the offensive line falls apart, don’t let Barber’s non-starter status fool you. It’s Addai or Barber for me down the stretch—Bush gets the bench unless the Deuce has an extremity that gets loose.

Started Devery Henderson Once Colston Was Ruled Out
This was a good FFTOC play that could be seen from a mile away. Too bad I wasn’t even casually looking in that direction. The one thing Henderson has in abundance is speed. The other is the fact Joe Horn and Bush occupies enough defensive backs to provide Henderson single coverage all day long. Colston should be ready to return next week so the time to play Henderson is likely over. Still, you have to believe he’s a good dynasty option with Joe Horn nearing the final years of his career. I’m not as enthused with Henderson’s all around game, but with Brees behind center, he’s still worth keeping on medium-sized to deep rosters.

Nagging Feelings—Week 13

Mark Brunell’s career as a starter is over—the Jason Campbell era has begun. The thing I like about the former Auburn quarterback is the fact he performed well despite learning three offensive systems in college. This was something most overlooked in lieu of the RB depth chart that included Cadillac, Ronnie Brown, and Brandon Jacobs but trust me, you need to be able to throw the football to be better than a 4-loss team in the SEC.

I think Jay Cutler is going to show why I thought he was the best impact rookie. I think he’s going to make the impact when it counts most. If you are a risk taker, pick up Cutler and start him over those mediocre, but safe options. Defenses will test him, but there’s a corollary worth considering: defensive backs will be overconfident and try too hard to make the big play—often at the expense of a big play if they fail. Cutler has the kind of arm that defensive backs will have difficulty gauging (or expecting).

I just watched Hasselbeck throw his first interception of the game out of a five wide receiver set where Mack Strong was split wide and didn’t have a defensive back within 15 yards of him. I guess you could say the snow was in the quarterback’s eyes, but talk about missing a great opportunity. Oh, the joys of being an armchair quarterback! He found Strong on the same player twice later in the quarter.

Cleveland needs a bona fide, premiere runner. Reuben Droughns is a great role player or solid starter on a great team, but the Browns aren’t that kind of squad. Cleveland has a really good shot at landing Adrian Peterson if the OU back declares for the draft. As a childhood fan, it would be divine justice for this team to get a shot at this undeniable talent that will supply a level of toughness and game breaking skill versus the physical defenses of the AFC North. A 1-2 punch of Droughns and Peterson could do wonders for this offense in 2007.