As we all know Hindsight is 20/20. This weekly column is devoted
to learning from common mistakes and serves as FFToday’s “Fantasy
Last week was great in my
local league, but this week was good enough to post the scores
once again. It may seem like gloating, but you might as well enjoy
consecutive weeks of 165+ point outings for as long as they last.
||#1 QB-worthy stats this week for a late
||Not like last week, but if I get even
80% of this total every week, I’ll have no complaints.
||Addai is beginning to get more consideration
as the #2 RB.
||Wow, I don't think I've ever had such
a good waiver wire pick.
||Admittedly, I almost replaced him with
Jennings prior to kickoff.
||More on him later…
||Almost scored on his second reception.
||I'm expecting this to continue with
McNair/Billick at the helm.
||Back to early-season form.
||If he could only play the Saints every
||#2 RB-in training.
||Reliable #3 RB in a pinch.
||Trade bait I couldn't deal, but decent
depth if Portis can’t go.
||When healthy, he's like Barber III with
||Couldn't resist adding him two weeks
||Could be a great fantasy playoff option
if SD rests LT down the stretch.
||Excellent depth at this point.
||Gives me room to shop on the waiver
If Joseph Addai can continue producing as a reliable #2 RB, my fantasy
squad could be in for a special season. Last week I dropped from
81st to 128th overall in the FFTOC, but I rebounded with a nice
game thanks to smarter choices at running back.
||Not like the past two weeks, but those
rushing yards contributed to a respectable effort.
||I figured Barber was due for a score
and it was nice the game was close enough for Tiki to
get enough attempts for my benefit.
||Not spectacular, but much after last
week’s RB choices, no complaints here.
||Went for the risk-reward choice, but
ended up on the bad side of the deal.
||An even more impressive effort considering
the absence of Joe Horn.
||Big-time player…Big-time game…
||Just a poor choice when Atlanta, Detroit,
and Jacksonville were all available.
||Decent day, despite Strahan leaving
the game due to injury.
||As long as I keep following up bad weeks
with these efforts, I’ll be okay.
Ronnie Brown Would Tear Up The Chicago
What a game for Brown—nothing like 29 carries for 157 yards
from a player that most owners probably didn’t want to start
by choice this week. What was even more impressive is Brown did
it with his longest carry coming at the tail end of the 4th quarter
for 27 yards. Brown has quietly amassed top ten worthy fantasy
totals at his position:
|2006 Game Log Stats
Although Brown had good production against tougher strength of
schedule defenses such as Pittsburgh and New England, his actual
performance from a yardage standpoint was paltry—no real
indicator that the second year back would explode versus a defense
of Chicago’s caliber. In fact, there aren’t too many
stats that would support a numbers-based prediction for this type
of game. Looking at the play by play, it appears Brown’s
game was bolstered by Harrington’s effective play. Nothing
creates more problems for a defense than a balanced offense, and
that was exactly what Miami had on Sunday.
I believe Miami’s offense will continue to gel as they face
some vulnerable defenses and get to play at home down the stretch.
The key is Joey Harrington’s ability to develop a rapport
with Chris Chambers. I believe Harrington will and part of the
reason has to do with the former Lion getting a chance to play
without any pressure. What does Harrington have to lose? He’s
no longer supposed to be the franchise player, the team’s
record has been in the toilet, and Daunte Culpepper’s play
has been the focus of the media’s ire. It’s quite
conceivable that Harrington could be one of those surprise stars
of the fantasy playoffs.
David Garrard Could Have A 3-Touchdown
The East Carolina product entered the league with the confidence
that he could become an NFL starter. If you remember, he caused
a bit of a stir during his first training camp after telling the
media he thought he had a shot at unseating Mark Brunell (in hindsight,
that might not seem like such a big deal based on the Redskin
starter’s play since that statement years ago), but he never
got a true shot to be the starter in Jacksonville. The thing about
Garrard is that his individual stats are rarely gaudy. Even with
Sunday’s performance he barely completed 50% of his passes
and didn’t crack the 200-yard mark through the air. Although
the media characterizes Garrard as an excellent runner, it is
not as if he’s on par with Vick or even McNair in his prime.
His best game on the ground during his starts in 2005 was a 61-yard
effort versus the lowly Cardinals.
Garrard’s game is about efficiency. When you combine his
strengths with an improved rushing attack in 2006, you get an
opportunity to see better production. Yet to predict a 3-touchdown
game from a quarterback that has only had more than one passing
score in a game just once prior is unlikely.
Stuck With Chris Chambers
Did you read the second
half splits column on Friday? The Gut Check told you to take
a chance on Chris Chambers. While I doubt most of you had Chambers
available on your league’s waiver wire, I’m sure some
of you have been letting the Dolphins receiver rot on your bench
after he’s been such a disappointment to start the year.
While I didn’t have Chambers in any of my leagues, I wouldn’t
mind trying to acquire him.
The key stat for Chambers has been the fact he has averaged 9
targets per contest leading into Sunday. The guy is due for some
big games if Harrington can improve his accuracy. Considering
the cast of characters posing as franchise quarterbacks for the
Dolphins prior to 2006, you should feel hopeful about Chambers
second half prospects. Last year, Chambers had only two games
with more than 80 yards receiving prior to week 8—and no
Chambers actually has one more touchdown at this point than he
did last year. Chambers had three, two-touchdown games after week
8 in 2005 and five games with at least one score. Just like I
said to stick with Kevin Jones, I believe all the factors are
favorable for Chambers to resume his place as a quality #1 receiver
for the next two months.
Kept My Mouth Shut About Javon Walker
Both Walker and Deuce McCallister are exploding the theory that
you can’t be incredibly productive just a year after an
ACL tear. I spent all summer talking about McCallister so I had
no wiggle room there, but I was blind to Walker. Three touchdowns
versus Pittsburgh later, and it shut my mouth. I like how the
Broncos are using Walker in the red zone, but the most impressive
thing about this game was Walker’s touchdown run off the
end around where he displayed explosive cutback moves. Prior to
this game, Walker was on his way to cracking the fantasy top fifteen
at his position. After 200+ yards from scrimmage, Walker is sure
to crack the top ten and he’s probably just getting started.
Nagging Feelings—Week 10
I don’t know whether it’s the old AFC Central upbringing that
has me wanting to say, “I told you so,” but a month ago I said
it looked like the Steelers were headed for a rough year. After
watching them fall behind early to Denver only to fumble away
their chance to get back into the game after a long completion
to Cedrick Wilson, I’m convinced Pittsburgh is done. Speaking
of this game, if you want an early prediction on a 2007 breakout
receiver, my sleeper pick is Denver rookie Brandon
Marshall. The former defensive back out of Central Florida
is a guy I’ve talked about in this summer’s Rookie
Impact Series. He has shown flashes in small moments this
year. The one receiver missing from my July preview was Marques
Colston. Like most everyone else, I thought he was on his way
to becoming a tight end.
One last thought on the Steelers. Despite Santonio
Holmes’ miscues in this game, I’m convinced this guy is going
to be a big factor in elevating the Pittsburgh passing attack
to greater heights in 2007 due to his hands and skills after the
catch. In fact, I believe in hindsight Pittsburgh won’t miss Plaxico
Burress over the long haul as much as it appears right now that
On a different note concerning the Steeler-Broncos game, did you
hear someone hack up and spit out that lung cookie on national
television in the second quarter? Based on the audio and timing,
I have a feeling Jim Nantz forgot to turn off his microphone.
It’s moments like these where you wish TIVO could save short
clips you can separate from a longer recording. Then there’s
the Direct TV commercial with Jessica Simpson holding the bar
patron down with her high heel. Did you notice they digitally
insert her lips onto the movie clip to portray her telling her
captive audience the message? How freaky and cheap is that? This
is not something I want to be watching after a few beers.
What I want to watch every weekend is Marvin
Harrison catching footballs from Peyton Manning. Number eighty-eight
is my choice as the best receiver in the NFL. Harrison’s second
touchdown reception on Sunday night was one I’ve seen him make
several times in the past decade and it is the perfect example
of how a great pair of hands and body control beats size and speed.
I heard Sterling Sharpe talk about Marvin Harrison as if he were
more of a role player heading into the game and that Reggie Wayne
was the main guy. Unless you define role player as the guy the
Broncos shadowed with Champ Bailey, the best cornerback in football,
while Reggie Wayne got to beat Darrent Williams like a bass drummer
in a marching band, then I don’t know what Sharpe is talking about
The Colts-Patriots game was like one of those old-fashioned heavyweight
bouts. One rainy day in May or June of 2007 when “juice ball”
is in full swing, I’ll pop in my DVD of this game, turn down my
thermostat, and pretend it’s early November for a few hours. As
long as Bob
Sanders can play, the Colts defense will have a fighting chance
to be competitive. Although fantasy football is still primarily
and offensive game, you have to appreciate the quality of safeties
in today’s NFL like Sanders. Ed Reed, Troy Polamalu, and Adrian
Wilson are at the top of the list. You still have Brian Dawkins
playing quality ball in the nadir of this career and Sean Jones,
Roy Williams, and Shaun Taylor on the ascent.