Friday, December 31, 2010

Week 17 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good Week 16? If you’re still in it, then this is truly your last chance to make fantasy noise. This is the most odd week of the entire season, so be careful of who needs their game and who doesn’t.

Who to Start:

QB Matt Schaub (HOU) vs. JAX: Even if Andre Johnson doesn’t play, this is still a wonderful matchup for Schaub. He threw for over 300 yards the first time the 2 teams played, and look for him to do that once again.

RB Shonn Greene (NYJ) vs. BUF: I would look to see LT and other Jets being rested, and Shonn Greene, whose been trending up for the past 3 weeks, to see a lot of carries and turn that into a lot of yards against a bad Bills D.

WR Mario Manningham (NYG) vs. WSH: The Giants won’t have Hakeem Nicks on Sunday, and with the Giants other injuries, look for Manningham to be the feature target for Eli Manning. The Redskins D is still very bad, so look for Manningham to make the most of it.

WR Danario Alexander (STL) vs. SEA: In this win and in matchup, look for Alexander to shine for the who’s who of the Rams receiving corps. The Seahawks don’t defend the pass very well, and look for Sam Bradford to look Alexander’s way often.

TE Owen Daniels (HOU) vs. JAX: The Jags more often than not don’t defend the Tight End, so Daniels, who has seen great games of late, should have a big game for Houston.

DEF Atlanta vs. CAR: The Panthers as we know have a terrible offense, and with Atlanta still having something to play for, look for their D to smother Jimmy Clausen and the hapless Panthers.

Who to Sit:

QB Josh Freeman (TB) vs. NO: As great as he has played this season, don’t look for him to perform very well against a Saints D that stopped Matt Ryan on Monday, and forces plenty of turnovers.

RB Peyton Hillis (CLE) vs. PIT: Where has he gone in the past weeks? Far down the list of desired starts. The Steelers run D has been great and still will be, so don’t look for Hillis to do very much.

WR Santonio Holmes (NYJ) vs. BUF: As he’s dealing with a bum toe, he may not see full action on Sunday. Even so, the Bills pass D has been a bright spot for that team, only allowing 15 passing TD’s all season, so don’t look for a big stat line for Holmes regardless.

WR Mike Williams (SEA) vs. STL: With Charlie Whitehurst starting, don’t look for him to have a big stat line, as Whitehurst hasn’t looked great in any of his starts this year.

TE Jermaine Gresham (CIN) vs. BAL: The rookie from Oklahoma has great potential to be one of the best Tight Ends in fantasy next season. But don’t expect that to start on Sunday against a Ravens D that is well, the Ravens D.

DEF Chicago vs. GB: The Bears D didn’t look good against the Jets, and with the Packers likely throwing in all their chips for this game, and with the Bears also likely having nothing to play for, the Bears D is not a good start.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 17:

QB Sam Bradford (STL) vs. SEA: Bradford had a good stat line in Week 4 when these 2 teams met, and again look for Bradford to potentially tear it up for the Rams who I think will win the NFC West.

WR Jacoby Jones (HOU) vs. JAX: As I think I’ve mentioned plenty of times, the Jags pass D is very bad. Jones could see more targets if Andre Johnson is out, and if that’s the case look for Jones and his speed to cause problems for the Jags secondary.

TE Rob Gronkowski (NE) vs. MIA: He’s the Tight End to look for due to the injury to Aaron Hernandez and for the fact that the Pats will still go all out, even though they have nothing to play for.

Good Luck in Week 17 and have a happy new year! This column is done for the season, but next week at the same time, look for my analysis of all of the wild card matchups from head to toe, and that will continue all the way until the Super Bowl.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010: A Year in Review

When people who cover sports look back on the year 2010, what will they remember the most? 3 teams ending long championship droughts and lifting their respective cities in the process? Americans gravitating toward sports they never particularly liked before? July 1st becoming the most important day of the year for the NBA? Controversies, with stars falling from grace like stones? The milestones reached, and the greats we lost? All of it was amazing, but this proves a point I've been writing about all year, and will write about for years to come, you just never know what could happen.

The year had so many great things happen, I don't know where to start. We can start with the city of New Orleans, being lifted from the doldrums by one team, and one goal. Super Bowl XLIV will be one we remember for quite some time, not even for the result, but how and why it was important. An onside kick to start the 2nd half; we'll never see that again, never mind a Super Bowl. Even if the Saints don't hoist another Lombardi Trophy for 40 years, that one will always be special, and America was taken along for the ride. How could you not feel uplifted?

In Vancouver, Canadians wanted to "Own the Podium", and they sure did. As much as they love 13 of them, only 1 was of the most importance, the men's hockey gold medal. They were expected to easily take it, but along came the plucky Americans. A young fast group they were, and in their 1st game against the Canadians, in SD, they stunned us all by beating them. Canada was on the brink of missing out on their most important medal. But as with all comeback stories, they persevered, spanking the Russians, a team many thought they'd play for the gold, and it set up a matchup for the gold with the U.S. Canada had won the gold on American soil in 2002, and the Americans so wanted revenge. We all know that the Canadians won in OT, in one of the most tense hockey games you'll ever see. We'll probably never see something like that again. If something can nearly eclipse the 1980 hockey tournament, then it had to be great, and it was.

There were 2 other teams that were lifted from long championship droughts. The Chicago Blackhawks had waited 49 years for a Stanley Cup, and the San Francisco Giants waited 56 total years for a World Series. Both droughts ended with a flourish, and both cities were exiled from the long cold waits. Repeats are of course possible, but nothing will be like the ones that removed the cities from the waits for a title.

In June, eyes turned to South Africa for a World Cup, and many before hadn't the slightest bit of interest in it, except for the cult-like group of devout soccer followers. But this one was different, after the U.S's stunning job in the 2009 Confederations Cup, the country waited with baited breath. Their first opponent was England, and we know what happened in that game. A draw, but that put the U.S in the eyes of the soccer world. And with Landon Donovan's last second goal against Algeria, the U.S again had captured the imagination of the entire country. Controversies aside, and even though the U.S was eliminated in the Round of 16, soccer was back in the mainstream eyes of the country.

The controversies this year were numerous. From Cam Newton to Brett Favre and back to the old venerable Tiger Woods, 2010 wasn't without its share of controversies. The Brett Favre- Jenn Sterger case dragged on until the 29th of December, and between the start and end of the controversy Brett Favre's start streak ended, he was injured twice, and the Vikings played a home game in Detroit, outside for the first time in 30 years and on a Tuesday. Tiger Woods was in the eye of the media for a long time, until he admitted to what he had done, and it seemed like everything was about Tiger, when it probably shouldn't have been. It overshadowed Phil Mickleson winning another Masters, a European winning the U.S Open, and a club grounding that cost Dustin Johnson a chance at a PGA Championship. When those who look back on this year in golf see these events, they will remember Tiger first, and last, and it breaks the stigma that athletes may hold, that they are the best in society, and that they cannot wrong. Cam Newton's brought back the notions of the "death penalty" case to SMU, and again questioned the NCAA and its endeavors.

In between all of these events, we lost the best coach of all time in any sport, John Wooden, and he will be sorely missed, but his teachings still live on with us, as the UCONN women have won 90 in a row, eclipsing Wooden's 88. We've seen some amazing plays that we'll never see again. We've seen surprise teams surprise us, and major ones disappoint us. We saw something that only ever happened once before, a no-hitter in the postseason, and baseball had its own year of the pitcher. This was the year that had it all, and again shows that you never know what you'll see when you buy a ticket. 2011 looks to be a year of uncertainty. All 4 major leagues CBA's are expiring, and grueling talks are forthcoming. I hope none have major lockouts, but it seems as though one will. Which one, I cannot say. Some teams viabilities in their current markets may be put in question. And while next year may not have the Olympics or World Cup that this year had, it will be special in its own right. 2010 will be remembered as a year when amazing things happened, and for all of us, it was amazing to experience it all. Here's to a great 2011, and the amazing things that may come.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Week 16 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good Week 15? It’s Super Bowl Weekend for many this weekend, and therefore you need your best performance of the entire season! For everyone else, there’s still hope, so don’t despair.

This column won’t include the Thursday Night game CAR/PIT.

Who to Start:

QB Matt Schaub (HOU) vs. DEN: The Denver pass D is terrible, and Schaub is looking to get back on track after a subpar 2 weeks. With the Broncos having allowed 25 passing TD’s all year, the Texans QB should have a monster week.

RB Ryan Torain (WSH) vs. JAX: After Donald Brown (yes a Colts running back), torched the Jags rushing D, and with Torain averaging 6 yards a carry since his return from injury, he should see a big game on Sunday.

WR Vincent Jackson (SD) vs. CIN: Last Thursday he had 3 TD’s and has proven to be a big weapon for Philip Rivers. Against a shaky Bengals pass D, V-JAX could have a monster day for a team in chase mode.

WR Lance Moore (NO) vs. ATL MON: Atlanta as good as they are, still has a shaky pass D, and Drew Brees will attack that early and often. Moore had 6 catches for 149 yards and 2 TD’s against Atlanta in September, so there’s no reason why things won’t be different on Sunday.

TE Kevin Boss (NYG) vs. GB: He’s had an on-again, off-again season thus far, but he’s been great against teams who don’t defend the Tight End very well, and the Packers are one of them. Look for Boss to have another big game on Sunday.

DEF Dallas vs. ARZ SAT: Even if they give up yards and points, no doubt will they have plenty of sacks and turnovers of John (Red) Skelton. That should offset the yards and points for you, shouldn’t it?

Who to Sit:

QB Jay Cutler (CHI) vs. NYJ: Even though Cutler has been playing very well this year, start with much caution against the Jets D, who except for Tom Brady has been great this year. And no foot fetishes also, so that’s a good sign.

RB Peyton Hillis (CLE) vs. BAL: I know he’s hard to sit by this point, but he hasn’t been as amazing as he was in the last 3 weeks. America’s RB could struggle against Baltimore, who despite their D struggling, it’s been more through the air than on the ground.

WR Sidney Rice (MIN) vs. PHI: Unless Brett Favre starts, which could happen knowing him, avoid him. Joe Webb is pretty bad, and that should be of bigger importance than Philly’s weakened and injured secondary.

WR Braylon Edwards (NYJ) vs. CHI: He’s been very inconsistent this season, and don’t expect good things from him against a very good Chicago pass D, despite his over 100 yards against Pittsburgh.

TE Brent Celek (PHI) vs. MIN: With Mike Vick at the helm, Celek is oft not even a thought in Vick’s progressions. Since week 11, he’s been targeted (thrown at) only 4 times a game! Not enough times to make a big impact I’m afraid.

DEF Oakland vs. IND: I know the Raiders have a great pass rush, and superb secondary, but against the Colts, who look to be getting Joseph Addai back from the injury report, look for the Raiders D to struggle.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 16:

QB Rex Grossman (WSH) vs. JAX: Sexy Rexy threw for over 300 yards against the Cowboys last week making the Shanahan’s look very smart. That could continue against a Jaguar secondary that is pretty terrible, allowing the 3rd most fantasy points to QB’s.

TE Jimmy Graham (NO) vs. ATL MON: Who? The Saints new preferred go-to Tight End, who made some pretty amazing catches last Sunday in Baltimore. With a favorable matchup against the Falcons, look for Graham to perform well.

QB Tim Tebow (DEN) vs. HOU: Yes, I am suggesting Tim Tebow could have a big day. He looked OK, nothing amazing or awful last Sunday, and he’s facing a terrible Houston secondary. He could perform large if you have no other option.

Good Luck in Week 16 and have a Merry Christmas! 2010 year in review comes next week.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Week 15 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good Week 14? You’re either in the playoffs or out by now, and again you need your best performances. I’m here to try to help you out with that.

This won’t include the SF/SD Thursday Night game.

Who to Start:

QB Josh Freeman (TB) vs. DET: The Lions don’t have a very good D, and don’t let last week fool you. That was Matt Flynn, and Josh Freeman isn’t Matt Flynn, and the Bucs have a playoff chase.

RB Brandon Jacobs (NYG) vs. PHI: With the Eagles losing Brandon Graham and Stewart Bradley for the year, the Giants will have a bit of an easier time running against Philly. After Jacobs has had 2 great games in a row, he should continue his pace.

WR Pierre Garcon (IND) vs. JAX: With Garcon now healthy after a 10 day break, he should be in prime condition. The Jags pass D is very bad, and with the Colts not being able to run the ball, Garcon should have a big game.

WR Miles Austin (DAL) vs. WSH: With Dez Bryant out for the year looks to Austin for plenty of targets. It should help that he’s facing the Redskins pass D that is pretty terrible.

TE Zach Miller (OAK) vs. DEN: Denver can’t stop the Tight End, and with so many of them on the shelf due to injury, look for Miller to have a big game.

DEF Arizona vs. CAR: I know the Cardinals D statistically is bad, but when they play Carolina, who has little to no offense, they should have a big game.

Who to Sit:

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ) vs. PIT: The savior of the Jets? I think not. He’s not thrown a TD since Thanksgiving, and with the Jets facing the Steelers, these troubles will likely continue.

RB Marshawn Lynch (SEA) vs. ATL: He had a big game 2 weeks ago, but he reverted back to Buffalo’s Marshawn Lynch last Sunday. With Atlanta stopping the run very well of late, don’t bet on Lynch to have a good game.

WR Sidney Rice (MIN) vs. CHI MON: Joe Webb will be throwing him passes in the frigid cold. Wait, who is their QB? A rookie who didn’t look too good against the Giants, and with the Bears D looking to restore some dignity, look for Rice to do very little.

WR Greg Jennings (GB) vs. NE: I know he’s hard to bench, but if Matt Flynn starts, I don’t see him doing very much. The Pats D has looked awesome in their last 2 games, and that probably will continue, and look for Jennings to do very little.

TE Aaron Hernandez (NE) vs. GB: Nobody truly knows who the Pats number 1 tight end is, but Hernandez is seeing fewer and fewer snaps. Rob Gronkowski is seeing the bulk of the snaps now, so don’t be surprised if Hernandez does little.

DEF Baltimore vs. NO: Choking away a 21 point lead to Houston? And then they have to play New Orleans on a short week after that? Not a good combination for the Ravens. They will force turnovers, but will allow some serious points though.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 15:

DEF Oakland vs. DEN: After the Broncos terrible performance against the Cardinals, look for Oakland to rebound from a bad game against the Jags. Oakland’s D has had its moments, and look for them to have more of them Sunday.

TE Jacob Tamme (IND) vs. JAX: Even though he’s a bit banged up, look for him to have a huge game against Jacksonville. The Jags don’t defend the Tight End very well, and knowing how much Dallas Clark has torched the Jags, Tamme should have a big game.

RB Rashad Jennings (JAX) vs. IND: After his 109 yards last week, and 3 TD’s in 3 games, look for Jennings to be a nice offset for MJD in a game where the Jags will run the ball plenty often.

Good Luck in Week 15!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Week 14 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good Week 13? Now it’s definitely playoff time in some leagues, and for others it will be your last chance to get in. You have to make this week count, and I hope some of the matchups will help you out. Extra guys this week because it’s playoff time.

Who to Start:

QB Joe Flacco (BAL) vs. HOU MON: He had a pretty good game against a much better Steeler D on Sunday Night. On Monday he’ll play the well-rested, yet still pretty terrible Houston pass D which is still dead last in the league.

QB Josh Freeman (TB) vs. WSH: He has not played well against the better teams on Tampa’s schedule, but the Redskins aren’t one of those teams. Statistically, they are very poor on pass D, and that should allow Freeman to tear them up.

RB Knowshon Moreno (DEN) vs. ARZ: Arizona’s run D is horrible, and with former RB coach Eric Studesville now at the helm, expect to see more rushes for Moreno, and he should benefit from those.

RB Felix Jones (DAL) vs. PHI: Even though Tashard Choice saw a good chunk of the action last Sunday, still expect Felix Jones to perform well. The Eagles allow about 17 fantasy points a game to opposing running backs.

WR Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. SEA: Despite the QB situation in San Fran being in flux, Crabtree has caught a TD in 5 of his last 8 games. Look for that success to continue against Seattle, whose pass D has been struggling of late.

WR DeSean Jackson (PHI) vs. DAL: Despite maybe being disgruntled, he should play well against a bad Dallas secondary who despite having 4 INT’s of Peyton Manning gave up tons of yards as well.

TE Zach Miller (OAK) vs. JAX: The Jaguars struggle to defend the Tight End, and with the Raiders pass protection being as bad as it is, Jason Campbell will need a safety blanket. Here he is.

TE Brandon Pettigrew (DET) vs. GB: The safety blanket factor could also be in play here with Drew Stanton to Pettigrew, and that should add to his value considering how much trouble the Pack have had stopping Tight End’s this year.

DEF Atlanta vs. CAR: The Panthers offense is abysmal, and the Falcons should take full advantage of that. Poor Jimmy Clausen.

DEF New York Giants vs. MIN: Whoever is starting at QB for the Vikes will be under siege against a suddenly resurgent Giants D. Since that 1st half against the Jags, they have allowed 10 points, and forced 8 turnovers since then.

Who to Sit:

QB Sam Bradford (STL) vs. NO: The should-be offensive rookie of the year could have some troubles against a Saints defense who despite last week still allow very few fantasy points to opposing QB’s.

QB Carson Palmer (CIN) vs. PIT: Shouldn’t this be a given? Oh well, the Bungals (intentional), have lost 9 in a row and have looked horrible doing so, and the Steelers should take full advantage of a hapless offense.

RB Marshawn Lynch (SEA) vs. SF: Despite his big stat line against Carolina, he should be avoided this week against a ‘9ers D that has allowed a total of 5 rushing TD’s all season.

RB Ronnie Brown (MIA) vs. NYJ: Despite the running game being Miami’s best option to generate offense, the Jets D has to take its frustrations out somewhere, and unfortunately, it will be on Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams.

WR Steve Smith (CAR) vs. ATL: I know Atlanta’s pass D is shaky, but he had 3 catches against the Seahawks. No offense, but that should be a red flag barrage for all his owners,

WR Deion Branch (NE) vs. CHI: He has found the going easy with the Pats, but off a 6 day break solely and with the Bears D being 3rd in the NFL, I would avoid Branch this week.

TE Owen Daniels (HOU) vs. BAL MON: Such a shame for a great potential Tight End with all of his injuries this season, and facing the Ravens D doesn’t help too much either.

TE Dustin Keller (NYJ) vs. MIA: He’s seen fewer targets since the offense was opened up with Santonio Holmes now in the mix, and I can’t see him doing well on Sunday with all of those factors against him.

DEF Chicago vs. NE: This is more of a risk pick then it is a flat out sit, but with the Pats riding high ever since the bad loss against the Browns, the Bears D may be under siege at Soldier Field.

DEF Dallas vs. PHI: Also a potential given, but considering the points this unit put up last week, you may consider starting them. It’s Mike Vick, on a 10 day break though.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 14:

QB Jon Kitna (DAL) vs. PHI: Again, this is for players who don’t have good options before they look at the waiver wire. With Asante Samuel not at 100% and Kitna on fire, look for him to maybe light up this Eagles D.

RB James Starks (GB) vs. DET: My new trademark for this column is now, “who?” And again, this is true. He is the new “feature” back” in Green Bay, and he should have success against the Lions D who time and again have trouble stopping the run.

WR Jacoby Ford (OAK) vs. JAX: Here’s your true sleeper this week. Ford has been a playmaking machine, catching the ball and returning kicks. Against a Jags secondary who doesn’t defend the pass very well, and is missing their starting strong safety, look for Ford to shine.

Good Luck in Week 14 and in the Playoffs!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Week 13 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 12? This may be your last week to get into the playoffs, for others, it may be the penultimate. Either way: you’d best be ready for the toughest fantasy week of the year. I’m here to lend a helping hand of course.

Writer’s Note: This column will not include the Thursday game HOU/PHI.

Who to Start:

QB Matt Cassel (KC) vs. DEN: There are many great QB matchups this Sunday, but this one is the best. Denver’s pass D, and D overall, is horrendous, and Cassel threw for 467 against Denver in Week 10. Granted most of that was in garbage time, but still he remains a must start for anyone with QB issues.

RB Felix Jones (DAL) vs. IND: With Marion Barber sidelined due to a nagging calf injury, Jones will see the bulk of the workload. It helps that he’s facing the Colts and their banged up, porous run-D.

WR Steve Johnson (BUF) vs. MIN: If he can get over last week soon enough, Johnson should be a good start against Minnesota. Minnesota allows tons of yards to wideouts, about 152 yards a game, so Johnson should be started.

WR Mike Williams (TB) vs. ATL: What a nice surprise he’s been for Tampa this year. On pace to finish with over 1000 yards receiving, he has found success against the many a bad D Tampa has faced this year. Atlanta does give up a ton of yards to opposing wideouts, so Williams is a good start this week.

TE Jacob Tamme (IND) vs. DAL: Who? The new Colts starting Tight End, who has seen a good chunk of passes thrown his way since Dallas Clark went on IR. That should continue against a bad Dallas pass D, and Peyton Manning may need a safety blanket because of his O-Line (did I just say that?)

DEF New Orleans vs. CIN: The Saints D has been off and on this year, not nearly as productive as last season. But, that should change against Cincinnati’s pretty poor offense which also turns the ball over plenty.

Who to Sit:

QB Donovan McNabb (WSH) vs. NYG: Even though he’s on pace to break his own single-season pass records, try to avoid him against the Giants. One, the Giants D is revamped and played much better, and 2, McNabb doesn’t have much of an O-Line to help him out.

RB Benjarvus Green-Ellis (NE) vs. NYJ MON: The New England starting RB job is a carousel, one’s in, the next week he’s out. Even though Green-Ellis has been a great pickup off waivers for those who needed him, avoid him against the Jets great rush D.

WR Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. GB: Even though he’s getting TD’s, he isn’t getting many yards. Once the TD’s go away, he may not do much at all. That could start against Green Bay, whose pass D is pretty good, and is playing pretty well right now.

WR Hines Ward (PIT) vs. BAL: Not only is this a bad matchup for Ward and the Steelers, Big Ben has a broken, not a sprained foot as was once believed. That could provide problems for all Steelers offensive players, Ward hurting the most. Avoid if possible.

TE Todd Heap (BAL) vs. PIT: Heap is quietly having a great year for Baltimore, but watch out against Pittsburgh. In his last 5 games against the Steelers, he has 7 catches for 102 yards only.

DEF New England vs. NYJ MON: This defense has been victimized by plenty of great offensive teams this year, and with Mark Sanchez having 10 days to prepare, and the Jets O having success against New England this year, the Pats D should be avoided this week.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 13:

QB Jay Cutler (CHI) vs. DET: As much as he turns the ball over, he should feast on a bad Lions pass D on Sunday. After his great performance against the Eagles, his success should continue.

RB Mike Tolbert (SD) vs. OAK: The Chargers are a lot like the Colts with the amount of injuries and players they’ve affected, yet seem to keep rolling along with success. Tolbert has been a great find off the waiver wire, and he should continue to impress against an Oakland rush D that struggles to defend the run.

DEF St. Louis vs. ARZ: After that Monday Night debacle for the Cards offense, the Rams D should be licking its chops. They had a good game against the Cards in Week 1, and with the Cards fading fast that should hold true once again.

Good Luck in Week 13!

FIFA Brings a Power-Qatar to U.S World Cup Hopes

Qatar is a country many have probably never heard of before. It's about the size of Connecticut, and as many people live there as people live as in Idaho. Yet, it will host the 2022 World Cup. Over the U.S, Australia, South Korea and Japan, 3 of those who have already hosted a World Cup before. Maybe this is homerism, but why did this happen? Why did the safest most accountable bid lose to such a gamble? There are many reasons why this is a risk, but this may show much more of what's going on at Soccer's highest organization.

Compared to the rest of the candidates, Qatar provided the most risk for FIFA. As mentioned, the country is the size of Connecticut and has as many people live there as in Idaho. The FIFA guideline for a good attendance is about 3.5 million people. That's double the amount of people that live in Qatar. The home country's fans provide the majority of the attendance at these World Cups, and the people while willing to go, probably can't, or enough can't go. Another issue is of course, weather. The average high in the capital Doha, in July is 115 degrees Fahrenheit. And soccer is safe to play in that right? Not so much. Qatar's campaign said that they could provide temperatures in the stadiums at around 66 degrees. That's a tall order, for a country that doesn't have those kinds of stadia right now. They lead the world in Carbon Dioxide production, and even though they have very liberal laws regarding Islam rules and culture, religious laws in Arab countries still take precedent. Alcohol sales are banned, but that will be lifted for the World Cup. As much as they want to try, it seems a bit implausible to walk over Islamic law that easily for a month. Where should the many fans from other countries stay? The players? The media? The FIFA officials. All of that would need to be built. The U.S had all of that, easily and readily available today. And all of that is just logistics. That would seem enough to turn voters off. But, it didn't. Which begs the question, how did Qatar win the bid over 4 better countries for this hosting?

Qatar is a wealthy country, yet most of that is held by the royal family in charge. The family, plus the bid committee paid many stars, including Zinedine Zidane, to lobby for them. They were able to convince the already questionable leadership of FIFA, that the futuristic stadia that they could provide and the prospect of an untapped soccer area would be enough to overtake the U.S. FIFA has been rocked by scandals of bribery among the highest members for years, and when you connect the dots, you see what may have happened behind the scenes. These scandals and this selection put a black mark on the already corrupt organization. But, this doesn't even come close to what many in the U.S are calling a major knock against soccer in the States.

Many powerful people in the U.S soccer community have voiced out angrily against this choice. President Obama called this, "the wrong choice". Tweets ravaged twitter expressing discontent for this choice. "Qatar? Time to stop playing along. They can come to us when they want us to care about soccer again. They can bribe us next time," wrote one fan on twitter. "USA Soccer is set back another 20 years" wrote another. Many in the U.S media played up the many problems that Qatar may have, and Alexi Lalas, former U.S great, brought up the idea that the U.S should be a back-up host in case Qatar fails. All of that is fine, but the fact that the U.S wasn't picked outright is still shocking, and humbling. In the 1st round of voting, Qatar was 1 vote away from an absolute majority, meaning they would have won in the 1st round of voting. Something seems odd about that, but the decision is still final (for now).

This is not meant to bash Qatar at all. When the world looks back on the decision in June of 2022, we may see ourselves as naive nay-sayers if the bid proves to be successful. But, the vote was made in December of 2010, and in the 2010 world, this just doesn't make logistical sense. The U.S bid committee put together as squeaky clean of a bid as possible, but evidently it wasn't enough. You can read many articles and watch many videos on FIFA scandals, and you'd be 30 years older by the time you finished. But this still begs the question, why Qatar? Only FIFA voters could tell you that right now, and the answer bring up more questions. Even the IOC controversy in the mid 90's can't upstage the potential corruption behind the scenes. However it happened, Qatar is the host for the 2022 World Cup, and the world's eyes will turn there 12 years from now. U.S fans will be left to wonder what if, and why, for a long time coming.

Writer's Note: Watch this video on youtube to get an idea of FIFA scandals. Great job by the BBC.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Week 12 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good Week 11? I did, somewhat. Now as we get close to playoff time, wins are everything, and you need contributions from everybody. Before you chow down on your turkey and the fixings, read up fast, some of my best may be from Thursday.

Who to Start:

QB Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) vs. BUF: Buffalo struggles to defend the pass, as evident in the 1st half from last week, and Big Ben continues to get better and better. With Buffalo allowing near 16 fantasy points a game to opposing QB’s, get your Big Ben fix this week.

RB Brandon Jacobs (NYG) vs. JAX: Brandon Jacobs looks to get the bulk of the carries on Sunday, and the Jags have allowed 11 rushing TD’s this year, 3rd most in the league. They stopped both Arian Foster and Peyton Hills, but the going will get tougher this week.

WR Nate Burleson (DET) vs. NE THU: With the Lions throwing the most passes in the league, and New England’s pass D continuing to struggle, and Burleson becoming a major part of the Lions passing attack, go for him on Thursday.

WR Santonio Holmes (NYJ) vs. CIN THU: After what the Bengals allowed to Steve Johnson last Sunday, Santonio has to be licking his chops. The hero from the past 2 weeks should see major success against the same poor Bengals D.

TE Jacob Tamme (IND) vs. SD: Tamme has become a legit number 1 tight end due to Dallas Clark’s injury, and despite San Diego’s D being one of the better statistically in the league, they do give up fantasy points to Tight Ends.

DEF Cleveland vs. CAR: Last week the Browns forced 6 turnovers, and had 3 sacks. They’re trending up when facing Carolina and Brian St. Pierre.

Who to Sit:

QB Matt Ryan (ATL) vs. GB: Ryan has been one of the most consistent fantasy QB’s all season, but he could be in for a speed bump against the Packers D, which despite injuries, has allowed 9 passing TD’s all season.

RB Fred Jackson (BUF) vs. PIT: A good spot starter for many owners in the past 2 weeks, but remember, Buffalo faced Cincinnati and Detroit, 2 horrible run defenses. Against Pittsburgh, he should struggle, as the Steelers D is and always had been great against the run.

WR Brandon Marshall (MIA) vs. OAK: I feel sorry for him. Due to a gimpy hamstring, plus Tyler Thigpen starting, and not to mention maybe facing Nnamdi Asomugha, avoid him if possible.

WR Jeremy Maclin (PHI) vs. CHI: The Bears D has been one of the most underrated units in all of football and should give Mike Vick some headaches. It should also be said that the Bears have allowed only 5 TD’s to wideouts this year, limiting what Maclin could potentially do.

TE Marcedes Lewis (JAX) vs. NYG: Here’s your high risk, high reward guy for fantasy all year. He’s either done big things, or nothing at all. This week looks to pose some problems, as the Giants defend the Tight End better than almost anyone in the NFL.

DEF Baltimore vs. TB: Sit the Ravens D? You must be crazy right? No, I’m not. The Bucs are no offensive slouch and despite what they’ve done against the 3 teams with better than .500 records this year, the Ravens D isn’t what it used to be.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 12:

QB Sam Bradford (STL) vs. DEN: Maybe you’re desperate and have no better option, but Denver’s pass D has been horrendous this year. I know the Rams haven’t played well on the road, but this matchup is too tasty to deny.

RB Mike Tolbert (SD) vs. IND: If Ryan Mathews is out this Sunday, watch out for Tolbert. The Colts run D is terrible, and Tolbert looks to be a great play if you need one.

WR Mario Manningham (NYG) vs. JAX: The Jags pass D is pretty bad, and with both of the Giants top 2 WR’s out due to injury, Manningham will see the bulk of the receptions.

Good luck in Week 12, and have a very happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Week 11 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 10? Well, I did, until Michael Vick started for my opponent. And, in my other league, the guy had DeSean Jackson. Oh well. Now, there are no more bye weeks, and we’re in it for the stretch run, and the playoffs start soon, so you’d best be ready.

Writers Note: This column won’t include the Thursday night CHI/MIA game.

Who to Start:

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ) vs. HOU: He’s either been hot, or he hasn’t done anything this year. He’s on a bit of a streak now, and that should continue against a Texans defense that is last in the NFL against the pass, and gave up 342 yards and 2 TD’s to David Garrard last Sunday.

RB Jamaal Charles (KC) vs. ARZ: I know the Chiefs were out of last week’s game very quickly, so we didn’t get a chance to see how good Jamaal Charles could be on the ground. But, we did see him catching screens, and boy is he good at it. Against Arizona’s porous run D, his success should return.

WR Dez Bryant (DAL) vs. DET: Welcome back Cowboys offense! I knew we’d see your return someday! And because of that, expect the potential offensive rookie of the year to light up the Lions secondary, and continue his great season.

WR Mike Williams (TB) vs. SF: This rookie, not to be mistaken with the Mike Williams in Seattle, is having a very nice year for the surprising Bucs. That success should continue against a relatively weak San Francisco secondary.

TE Todd Heap (BAL) vs. CAR: As with a lot of players this year in fantasy, they’ve either been great, or terrible. Todd Heap is one of those players. But, he should find the going easy against a terrible Carolina team who gives up tons of yards to Tight Ends.

DEF Baltimore vs. CAR: Now, technically, shouldn’t this be cheating? I know, but this matchup is so awesome that I just have to talk about it. Carolina is starting journeyman Brian St. Pierre (again- who?) at QB, and have their top 3 running backs consigned to the bench due to injury. Even though the Ravens D has been struggling, this is a must-start for this week.

DEF New Orleans vs. SEA: Because I think the last option was cheating, I’ll give out another. New Orleans is well rested off of their bye, and Seattle struggles to do anything away from Quest Field. The Saints D is back, and should be started this week.

Who to Sit:

QB Donovan McNabb (WSH) vs. TEN: Well then, what does $78 million buy you? 31 point losses on Monday Night and to your former team no less. He shouldn’t perform well against a very good and aggressive Tennessee pass D.

RB LeGarrette Blount (TB) vs. SF: This year has been the year of backs coming out of nowhere to be successful. We all know what Blount is famous for last year, but this year he’s been a consistently decent fantasy option. He should be a benchwarmer on Sunday because the ‘9ers have allowed 3 rushing TD’s all season.

WR Steve Smith (CAR) vs. BAL: Again, isn’t this a given by now with Carolina’s QB troubles? I feel for Steve Smith owners this year. This week should ease your pain, with Smith facing the Ravens D.

WR Donald Driver (GB) vs. MIN: If he is able to return from his gimpy quad, he may not do very well against the Vikings. In his last 7 games against them, he’s averaged 46 yards a game, and only 4 catches in those games.

TE Brent Celek (PHI) vs. NYG: One of the biggest fantasy disappointments lie in Philly. Brent Celek has done next to nothing when Michael Vick has been the QB, only 11 catches for 109 yards.

DEF New England vs. IND: Despite the fact that they played very well, they still gave up 26 points. Even though logic dictates that Peyton Manning will struggle against the Patriots as he commonly has, last year, he threw for 327 yards a 4 TD’s against the Pats.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 11:

QB Colt McCoy (CLE) vs. JAX: I understand that the Browns pass offense hasn’t been great under Colt McCoy, but when he faced a bad New England pass D, he performed well. Jacksonville’s pass D is pretty terrible, so I expect a decent game from the rookie from Texas.

WR Nate Washington (TEN) vs. WSH: Despite the presence of Randy Moss, Washington still caught a TD last week against Miami. If you saw what happened on MNF to the poor Redskins’ D, you’ll know why Washington is a potential major player this week.

TE Zach Miller (OAK) vs. PIT: Starting someone when they’re playing Pittsburgh seems like taboo right? Even though he’s injured, if he starts, he could see plenty of targets with many other Raiders on the shelf due to injury.

Good Luck in Week 11!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

An Unbiased Summary of the BCS

It's near the end of the college football regular season, and it's now the time to hear constant complaints about the BCS. People will talk about how it isn't fair to non-AQ schools, and how 1 loss teams from BCS schools are better than teams like Boise State or TCU. Few people talk about the positives of the BCS (here's looking at you Tim Cowlishaw) and why it's actually not that horrible. This is meant to bring all of those arguments together. Why is this being done? To tell everyone that the BCS is going to be stuck with us for awhile, and that we can't do a thing about it. This isn't your typical BCS rant.

One of the overwhelming positives of this system is that it makes every game in the regular season matter. This is a common point, but here's another way to look at it. Would you care more about a college basketball game at midnight between Ohio State and Florida, or a college football game between Boise State and Virginia Tech in the way beginning of each season? Probably the latter. The BCS forces every game to be interesting, and it forces the "BCS Busters" to schedule tough games in order to look better in front of the American public, and coaches of college football. The ratings for Boise/ Virginia Tech were much higher than Ohio State/ Florida, each in the beginning of their seasons. Every game in the college football regular season matters, and carries much more weight than a game between two top 10 teams in college basketball in November.

Another way to think of this is how much better this system is at getting a National Title game than say, the Bowl Alliance or Bowl Coalition. In the 3 Alliance Bowl national title games, the average margin of victory for the winners was about 32 points a game. Yikes. And, Bowl Alliance didn't include the "Grandaddy of 'em All", the Rose Bowl. Only 1 at-large team was able to qualify for this system, whereas now up to 4 can. And, the possibility of split National Titles was rampant with the Rose Bowl not being included in the Bowl Alliance. The Coaches Poll and AP Poll had 2 different #1 teams after 1997 because of this system. Now look at the BCS. Boise State, Utah, and TCU would have had no shot at a national title under the 2 bowl systems of the '90's. Even though they have a small shot now, it's still a shot. The BCS is light years away from where the previous systems were, and few people look at that as a major positive.

Finally, for the pro side, even though the BCS Buster likely can't compete for a national title, the way that the national title contenders and participants in the BCS is no different from how college basketball teams are picked to play in the field of 68. The same discussions are had about quality of wins, bad losses, records against better teams, etc, just with different people, and a different sport. The same thing holds true if a lock for the BCS loses say, in a conference title, and 1 at-large bid goes away. Just like in the build-up to the NCAA tournament.

Now, that last argument probably sparked many of you to say, "Well, in College Basketball there is a tournament to play out, and in the BCS, it's pre-selected games." This brings up the negatives of the BCS, and though there are many, only a select few jump out.

The first one of those is the possibility of a team with 7 or 8 wins playing a much better team in a BCS bowl game. This issue is very prominent when talking about the Big East champ, which is locked into a BCS bowl game, and therefore takes away an at-large bid from a much better team. For example, in 2004, the Big East champs, the Pitt Panthers who were 8-3, took a spot away from either Iowa, LSU, Boise State or Louisville (when they were in C-USA). Boise was 11-0 that year, but because of the bad Big East champ, Boise lost that spot. This year, the same problem may come up with the Big East champ taking away an at-large bid from a potentially undefeated team. The Big East leader right now is Pitt, and they are unranked in the BCS. According to CBS Sports, their projected Big East winner, USF (6-3 overall), takes a spot away from Oklahoma State or LSU, and they could come in with one loss. This problem isn't readily fixable, but here's a suggestion. How about having all of the BCS teams have a win requirement, or BCS average requirement. Even though that may undermine conference titles, it means that the best 10 teams in the country will play for the BCS bowls, not some chump change champ to get sacrificed to Nebraska or Stanford. The Big East is an example, but the ACC of late has had this issue too.

And onto the major issue with this system is of course, no playoff. The playoff is instituted in every other NCAA sanctioned sport in every division, except here. It's common place now to know why the BCS needs a playoff, or plus 1 system in order to let all the teams have a chance to compete for a National Title. If college basketball can have 68 teams possibly win a title, why can't 8 or 16 teams compete for a national title in football. 8 teams compete for D-2 and D-3 national titles, so why can't D-1 teams? Give Boise State a chance to beat the big boys, or TCU, or a 1 loss Stanford or Wisconsin. The selection process of these 8 or 16 teams would be problematic, but at least it would give every team a shot to win.

There you have one of the only unbiased summaries of the BCS ever. Sure it has its positives and negatives, but, the fans of the college world are stuck with it, at least until 2014-2015. Congress can't change it, so what makes us think that the college presidents would change it? Money still drives this world, and it sure as heck drives the BCS. If the world hasn't ended by the time that changes can happen, something will likely change, but until then, the college football world will be left to watch every Saturday to see teams chances at a crystal trophy smashed because of 1 loss. As much as change is needed, nothing can be done right now. OK, a new AQ conference could be added at the end of next season, but that still won't change the entire system, it will just tweak this one. The drama that surrounds the BCS, on and off the gridiron is what makes college football so interesting. A Saturday with no interesting matchups could smash a teams hope. And for the Saturdays where interesting games abound, there is so much drama, and America is sucked in by it. High drama: who doesn't love that in sports? That's what the BCS brings, and we're stuck with it.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Week 10 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 9 (and 8 for that matter)? Sorry I couldn’t write last week, things happen. But, at least the NFL hasn’t turned completely upside down in that time (here’s looking at you New England).

Writers Note: This column won’t include the BAL/ATL Thursday Night Game.

Who to Start:

QB Eli Manning (NYG) vs. DAL: I have missed the Cowboys epic collapse, and teams are now feasting on that horrible secondary. Eli Manning has been red hot, along with the rest of the Giants, and this game could turn very ugly, very quickly, as Eli may rack up huge numbers, along with his wideouts.

RB Jamaal Charles (KC) vs. DEN: Even though Thomas Jones got the bulk of the carries last week in Oakland, Charles has been the one racking up yards. He had big numbers against Denver last year, 315 yards and 3 TD’s to be exact, and Denver’s D is pretty abysmal.

WR Steve Johnson (BUF) vs. DET: Who is he again? The Bills new go-to guy through the air, that’s who. He should feast on a bad Lions secondary, as he continues to rack up numbers that perennial fantasy stars haven’t yet reached this year.

WR Mike Wallace (PIT) vs. NE: When Colt McCoy has a good game against you (no disrespect), you know you’re in for trouble against better pass offenses. Pittsburgh is one of those. So, Big Ben will look to his deep threat early and often, giving him the potential for a big day.

TE Marcedes Lewis (JAX) vs. HOU: He’s been this year’s feast or famine guy in fantasy, either having great games, or doing nothing. I expect the former to happen this week, against a Houston pass D that is last in the league, and has allowed 6 TD’s to Tight Ends, 2 of which came against Randy McMichael(who?).

DEF Tampa Bay vs. CAR: Poor Panthers. So many injuries and so little offense all year for them, it’s been pretty painful to watch. With both of the Panthers great running backs nursing injuries, and their pass offense being dreadful, look for the Bucs to capitalize, once again feasting on a bad opponent.

Who to Sit:

QB Carson Palmer (CIN) vs. IND: I know that he had a good game against Pittsburgh on Monday, but Indy despite its problems stopping the run, have defended the pass pretty well with all of their injuries. They’ve only allowed 9 TD passes all year.

RB Felix Jones (DAL) vs. NYG: Not only does the Giants stop the run very well, the ‘Boys have almost completely abandoned the run. So, don’t expect Jones, or Marion Barber, to do anything against the Giants on Sunday.

WR Steve Smith (CAR) vs. TB: I’ve already said that the Panthers offense is offensive, and Steve Smith has done nothing when Jimmy Clausen is starting, which Clausen will on Sunday. 5 catches for 33 yards is all Smith has done in that time.

WR Santana Moss (WSH) vs. PHI MON: He typically does nothing against the Eagles, averaging 26 yards a game in his last 5 against Philly, and only scoring 1 TD against them in that same span. He should again struggle, because the Eagles did a great job stopping Peyton Manning last week.

TE Greg Olsen (CHI) vs. MIN: Other than the fact that the Tight End is sparsely used in the Mike Martz offense, which has been proven all year, the Vikings have allowed 298 yards TOTAL to Tight Ends in 8 games this year. That’s 37 yards a game. Avoid.

DEF New England vs. PIT: It’s been awhile, but now New England doesn’t have a great D to compliment that offense. New England may hit the skids defensively against the aforementioned Steelers offense.

5(Technically 6) Super Sleepers for Week 10 (2 extra because I missed you guys so much):

QB Josh Freeman (TB) vs. CAR: Mr. 4th quarter this season should have a fun matchup against a bad Carolina secondary, of whom he had a good game against in week 2, throwing at 70% completion and having 2 TD’s.

RB Tim Hightower (ARZ) vs. SEA: If Beanie Wells is out and injured on Sunday, look for Hightower to have some success against a Seattle Rush D that has been pretty poor of late.

WR Mike-Sims Walker (JAX) and Kevin Walter (HOU): I have these guys put up in the same line for the same reason: they’re facing each other’s truly terrible pass D, and both could have breakout games.

WR Blair White (IND) vs. CIN: Well, with the Colts rash of injuries to wideouts, it looks like it’s time for Blair White to step up in the slot receiver role. He should perform very well against a poorer than expected Cincy D.

TE Brandon Pettigrew (DET) vs. BUF: Even though Matt Stafford has probably been lost for the year, look for Shaun Hill to target Pettigrew often, who is starting to get his season back on track.

Good Luck in Week 10!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

52 Giant Years Waiting

I was wrong. I was dead wrong. I was horrible at my 2010 MLB playoff predictions, but that is not what this article is about. I am congratulating the 2010 World Champions of baseball, the San Francisco Giants.

All of the great players that once played for this organization, Orlando Cepeda, Robb Nen, J.T Snow, Barry & Bobby Bonds, Juan Marichal, Willie McCovey, never got to hoist the Commissioner's Trophy in the Giants Orange and Black. But this gang of misfits, guys that were castoffs from other teams, came together in Arlington Texas and won the World Series.

This team doesn't have the major offensive weapon that the Braves had in Jason Heyward, that the Phillies had in Utley, Howard and Werth, the Yankees had in A-Rod, and Robby Cano, and finally, the Rangers had in the potential AL MVP, Josh Hamilton. They had guys like Cody Ross, Pat Burrell, Andres Torres, and Edgar Renteria. Most teams put the weight of the series on one guys back. The Giants asked everyone to contribute something, small or something you can't see on TV, but something nevertheless. In the NLCS, it was Cody Ross hitting 2 homers off of Roy Halladay in Game 1. And in this series, it was Renteria, evoking moments of 1997 Game 7 for the Marlins, when he hit a walk-off base hit with his 3 run homer off of Cliff Lee in the 7th. He joins a select group of players, who have hit game-winning RBI's in 2 World Series. Guys like, Lou Gehrig, and Yogi Berra are part of this exclusive club.

Duane Kuiper, the esteemed Giants broadcaster, coined this phrase about the Giants season. "Giants baseball... torture!" And a child at the park held up a sign that said, "Torture has ended". Maybe the "torture" was watching the great closer, Brian Wilson, work around major trouble to record a save. 2 runners on in Game 6 of the NLCS, but he did it. Not as much trouble in World Series Game 5, but he did it anyway. The torture sure couldn't be from the starting rotation. Tim Lincecum beat Roy Halladay once and Cliff Lee twice. Matt Cain had one of the greatest pitching performances in playoff history every time he stepped onto the mound. He shut out the Phillies and Rangers. And 21 year-old Madison Bumgarner put on a show in Game 4 in Arlington. It all came together for this team, this gang of misfits.

It may seem like I'm sucking up to this team, but why would I? They were the best team in these playoffs, and I doubted them. Shame on me for doubting them 2 times. The Texas Rangers had a great season, one filled with distractions and troubles, and for them to make the World Series was shocking in its own right.
But these San Francisco Giants haven't only won the World Series for all of the fans in San Francisco that have been waiting 52 years. They won it for all of the great players that have worn the orange SF on their cap, and couldn't bring it home.

Giants' fans: you can erase the bad memories of the Earthquake in 1989. You can erase memories of the rally monkey, and Scott Spezio. Now you have your own moments to hang your hat on. Congratulations, you have won the World Series. Let that thought sink in, if it hasn't already.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Week 8 Fantasy Advice

How was your week 7? For me, it was bad, very bad actually. These next 2 weeks are going to be tough with the 6 teams on byes, so your waiver wire pickups will be huge for these next 2 weeks.


Who to Start:

QB Matt Cassel (KC) vs. BUF: He’s been a good spot starter for those who’ve needed him against porous secondaries in the last 2 weeks. He’ll be useful in that same position this week, against Buffalo, who gives up tons of points to fantasy QB’s.

RB Ryan Torain (WSH) vs. DET: Who again? The new Redskins running back, and he’s been a great starter against bad rush D’s. That will continue against Detroit, who doesn’t stop the run very well, and gives up tons of fantasy points to RB’s.

WR Pierre Garcon (IND) vs. HOU MON: He’s been bitten by the injury bug this year, and with Dallas Clark and Austin Collie out of commission, he should see tons of action against a very bad Houston secondary.

WR Dez Bryant (DAL) vs. JAX: Ignore the Jon Kitna factor for a moment to see that the Jaguars secondary may be one of the worst in league history. 6 different safety combinations in 7 games have provided tasty matchups for wideouts, and that will stay the same for Dez Bryant.

TE Brandon Pettigrew (DET) vs. WSH: With Matt Stafford seeing his first action since week 1 due to injury, Pettigrew should finally see a bigger share of the Detroit passing pie, and it does help that Washington’s D allows a ton of yards.

DEF New England vs. MIN: Either way if Brett Favre is out or not, the Patriots D has looked pretty good all year as a fantasy option, and with Favre turning it over and limping or Tarvaris Jackson starting, this matchup is very enticing.

Who to Sit:

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ) vs. GB: He’s had his bye week, and he did have a great stretch from weeks 2-4, but he has struggled of late in his last 2 games, and that won’t help him much against a Green Bay pass D that has allowed 8 pass TD’s all season.

RB Ryan Mathews (SD) vs. TEN: I know he’s a great running back, and has star written all over him, but he’s seen less than 10 carries per game since week 4, due to Mike Tolbert and Jacob Hester. Until he sees more carries, bench him.

WR Donald Driver (GB) vs. NYJ: He’s been nagged by an injured quad and his streak of 135 games with a catch was broken last week against Minnesota. It should be noted he’s facing a rested Jets pass D also, which doesn’t help.

WR Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. DEN LONDON: He has either been awesome or awful for fantasy owners this year, with 1 game showing up and another seeming like he was injured. Now that he lost Alex Smith and David Carr to injuries, he now has Troy Smith to help him out. You can see why he should be benched.

TE Jeremy Shockey (NO) vs. PIT: He hasn’t had big games for New Orleans since week 5, 81 yards in that stretch, and it doesn’t help him that he’ll be facing the Steelers. Only way he does well if New Orleans voodoo affects that Steelers D on Halloween.

DEF San Francisco vs. DEN LONDON: This was a highly touted fantasy D in many drafts this year, and they’ve been the only part of the Niners team that has been somewhat decent for fantasy this year. Avoid them in London, because points get put up gangbusters at Wembley.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 8:

QB Jon Kitna (DAL) vs. JAX: Remember I mentioned the Jon Kitna factor earlier? That may turn you off if you have no other option this week. But remember this: he made Roy Williams a pro bowl receiver in 2007 with Detroit, and he is facing Jacksonville.

RB LeGarrette Blount (TB) vs. ARZ: He’s seen a lot more action in the Tampa backfield in the past couple of weeks, and as long as he doesn’t punch anyone in red, he should be a good option, against a bad Cardinals rush D.

WR Steve Johnson (BUF) vs. KC: Who is he? He’s Buffalo’s 2nd receiver now, and he’s played very well in the last 2 games for the Bills. He’s scored 1 TD each of his last 4 games. Despite the cries of “It’s Buffalo!” crooning in my ear, he is a very favorable option this week.

Good Luck in Week 8!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

My World Series Prediction

After my fails at predicting the other 2 rounds, I will try to do much better for this World Series.

San Francisco vs. Texas:

Hitting: Advantage Texas:

It has been proven that Texas has a very potent offense, and the Giants have more of a situational offense. Who would have expected Cody Ross to be the NLCS MVP for pete's sake? Even though San Francisco did a good job pitching to the Phillies offense, which is arguably better than the Rangers', I still believe that the Rangers will find a way to hit the Giants starters at least. The Rangers O gets at you early, and often, so minimizing damage early in the game will be huge for the Giants. With the Rangers batting being much better, and having grounded threats, like Josh Hamilton or Elvis Andrus, the Giants hitting will have to keep up. They only have Buster Posey, and someone we don't know yet will step up, while the Rangers entire line-up is threatening. The Rangers hitting is much better.

Starting Rotation: Advantage Texas:

You may be shocked that I picked them, but the Rangers had to pitch well to beat the Yankees, and they did that. C.J Wilson is a better pitcher right now than Matt Cain, Colby Lewis is better than the inconsistent Jonathan Sanchez, and Cliff Lee in all of his playoff dominance is better than Tim Lincecum (yeah, I said it). Even Tommy Hunter is pitching better right now than Madison Bumgarner. I think this series will ultimately come down to starting pitching, and while the Giants had the best starting rotation during the regular season, it only matters who is pitching better now, and right now the Rangers starters are absolutely dominant.

Bullpen: Advantage San Francisco:

It's a well known fact by now that the Rangers bullpen is very weak, and that is a major hindrance to the team if they are in close games. They haven't been in many close games because their starters and offense are clicking early, giving their bullpen a large enough cushion (except in ALCS Game 1). The Giants bullpen has been lock down in the playoffs. Brian Wilson is one of the best closers in the game today, and if he has a lead, he likely will not blow it, although he will make it very interesting. The Giants set up guys are also very dominant, and the Rangers set up guys are not very good. If the Giants have a lead, their bullpen will very likely keep it in tact.

Prediction: Texas in 6 Games.

The Rangers hitting and starters are better than the Giants hitting and starters, and that is the main reason why I think Texas will win this series. If the Giants offense produces enough, then they can win this series, but when the most runs you've scored in a game is 5 in these playoffs, that won't help them enough. I believe the Rangers after 49 years of agony; will be holding up the commissioner's trophy.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Week 7 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 6? I didn’t. Both of my fantasy teams lost, and so did my real time. I had a bad weekend, but that’s what my picks are for, and they were pretty decent. I wonder if I can get better luck from my fantasy and real teams, if I sacrifice my picks. No, because that would sacrifice my integrity.


Who to Start:

QB Kyle Orton (DEN) vs. OAK: Boy has he been a major surprise this year. He is one of the NFL’s leading passers, and he gets assisted by the fact he’s facing Oakland, who has allowed the last 4 QB’s they have faced to throw 2 TD’s a game.

RB Peyton Hillis (CLE) vs. NO: He’s now the feature back in Cleveland, and with their QB carousel spinning furiously, expect him to see a lot of action. He’s facing the Saints, who give up an average of 18 fantasy points a game to opposing backs this year, which gives him an advantage.

WR Dwayne Bowe (KC) vs. JAX: He has fixes his drop issues after a great game against Houston, and his success should continue, as he is facing the Jaguars pass D, which is 28th in the NFL against the pass.

WR Terrell Owens (CIN) vs. ATL: He has become the best fantasy wide out in the Queen City, and has become more than reliable as an every week fantasy starter. He should have more success against an Atlanta secondary that will be without its best corner, Dunta Robinson.

TE Todd Heap (BAL) vs. BUF: Despite the fact that Buffalo is coming off a bye, he should still have a big game for 2 reasons: one, the Bills have given up the most TD’s to Tight Ends this year, and 2 , Baltimore needs to take out its frustrations from last week on someone.

DEF Kansas City vs. JAX: The Jags may be down to a street QB starting this week. Despite the fact that the Chiefs D struggled last week that was against Houston, they should have a field day on Sunday.

Who to Sit:

QB Kevin Kolb (PHI) vs. TEN: He had a great game against Atlanta last Sunday, but he likely won’t against the Titans who lead the NFL in sacks, and normally shut down opposing QB’s.

RB Fred Jackson (BUF) vs. BAL: Despite the fact that his value went up after Marshawn Lynch was traded, he should be avoided this week because he is facing Baltimore’s D.

WR Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. CAR: Be weary of starting him this week. Despite Carolina’s 0-5 record, they are great at home defending the pass, just ask Todd Collins.

WR Mike Sims-Walker (JAX) vs. KC: He could be without his 2 top QB’s, and his fantasy numbers were already very low this year. Don’t expect numbers out of him this Sunday.

TE Greg Olsen (CHI) vs. WSH: He has done nothing, and I do mean that literally in his last 2 starts. He seems to be falling off in use in Mike Martz’s system. Avoid.

DEF San Diego vs. NE: They have played very well in their 2 home games, but that was against Arizona, and Jacksonville. New England played pretty well against a great Baltimore D, so this matchup is not good for owners.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 7:

RB Chris Ivory (NO) vs. CLE: The pride of Tiffin College (what?), he has been a great replacement for the injured Pierre Thomas. If Thomas is out, Ivory is a great start against a pretty bad Cleveland run D.

WR Patrick Crayton (SD) vs. NE: The Chargers are down to their last 2 wideouts, due to injuries to Malcolm Floyd and Legedu Naanee. So, Crayton, who had 117 yards last week, should see the majority of pass targets, with Antonio Gates also a bit shaken up.

DEF Denver vs. OAK: Oakland thought that they would be getting Jim Plunkett with Jason Campbell. They got more JaMarcus Russell. The offense has been a complete disaster, and that should mean good things for the Denver D.

Good Luck in Week 7!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Week 6 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 5? My picks may not have been as good as they could be, but hey, my fantasy teams won! It’s not about me though, it’s about my picks.


Who to Start:

QB Vince Young (TEN) vs. JAX MON: The Jaguars pass D is 29th in the league against the pass, and due to Chris Johnson taking up a lot of attention of opposing defenses, Young can and will perform well.

RB Ahmad Bradshaw (NYG) vs. DET: The Lions rushing defense is not very good, and the Giants who like to run the ball plenty often, will see to it that Bradshaw will have a great game, despite a bum ankle.

WR Mike Wallace (PIT) vs. CLE: With Big Ben’s return to the Steelers huddle, all of the Steelers wide outs are now very viable players. Mike Wallace is the Steelers’ deep threat, and due to that, Ben will target Wallace often. It helps to play Cleveland also.

WR: Dwayne Bowe (KC) vs. HOU: I know that Dwayne Bowe has been dropping the ball way too often for Chiefs fans, but on Sunday, he’ll be facing the Texans who have the worst pass D in the league.

TE Tony Gonzalez (ATL) vs. PHI: Despite the Eagles D playing better of late, they still always seem to struggle to defend Tight Ends, and Tony Gonzalez is still one of the best around.

DEF Chicago vs. SEA: The Seahawks have been truly dreadful on the road this year, looking bad in both games at Denver and St. Louis, and they’ll struggle against a resurgent Bears unit.

Who to Sit:

QB Sam Bradford (STL) vs. SD: After a very bad game against Detroit of all teams last week, he won’t be able to rebound easily against a San Diego pass D that has been causing trouble for all opponents this year.

RB Ronnie Brown (MIA) vs. GB: Despite the Pack being battered and bruised, they’ve still allowed the 3rd fewest fantasy points to opposing backs this year, which makes this matchup not appealing for Brown’s owners.

WR Braylon Edwards (NYJ) vs. DEN: If you have better options, use them because Edwards is going up against one of the best cover corners in the league, Champ Bailey.

WR Deion Branch (NE) vs. BAL: Despite him being traded to New England over the past week which improves his fantasy value greatly, I would recommend sitting him against Baltimore, who still has one of the best D’s in the NFL.

TE Marcedes Lewis (JAX) vs. TEN MON: His (few) owners have been well rewarded with his 5 TD’s, 2nd in the NFL amongst Tight Ends behind Antonio Gates. However, this matchup doesn’t favor Lewis, as he only has 1 TD against the Titans in his 8 career games.

DEF Washington vs. IND: Last week the Colts were held in check by the Chiefs, but this won’t continue against a Redskin D that hasn’t been too great against opposing QB’s this year.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 6:

DEF Miami vs. GB: Watch the injury reports to see if Aaron Rodgers is healthy enough to play. If he isn’t, the Dolphins D becomes instantly much more attractive as a fantasy option.

TE Tony Moeaki (KC) vs. IND: I talked about him last week, and he is becoming Matt Cassel’s favorite target. The Texans as mentioned don’t stop the pass very well, or opposing Tight Ends for that matter, making Moeaki a good pickup for those of you who have lost Jermichael Finley (me!)

WR Kenny Britt (TEN) vs. JAX MON: I’ve already mentioned that the Jaguars don’t stop the pass very well, and Kenny Britt will reap the benefits of this.

Good Luck in Week 6!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

LCS Previews

Well, my ALDS and World Series picks failed miserably. So now, I must remedy this situation by doing a much better prognosticating job.

ALCS: NYY over TEX in 6 games.

The New York Yankees shocked me a bit in the way they beat up on Minnesota. Maybe it was the Twins psychological feelings that they couldn't beat the Yankees in the playoffs, or their overall losing streak, I don't know, but whatever it was, the Yankees took advantage of it. They came back in both games in Minneapolis, and soundly beat the Twins in the Bronx. Their starting pitching, a major question mark coming into the series, was great. Andy Pettitte continues his playoff dominance, despite his injuries, and the Yanks look like a team that can win the World Series again. Texas on the other hand, really shocked me. Cliff Lee continues his playoff dominance, and C.J Wilson provided good pitching for the Rangers in game 2. They won on the road, which they don't have to do in this series, but will bode well for the World Series. However, Cliff Lee won't pitch until game 3 in New York, so the Yankees have a chance to jump out in the series early. Both teams have good offenses, but what tips the scales for me is the Yankee bullpen, which has way fewer question marks. Neftali Feliz blew both games in Texas, and Mariano Riviera continues to be his normal, dominant self. That is what tips the scales for me. The Rangers didn't fare well at home, and they have 4 games in Arlington. The Yankees look so good right now, so it is impossible for me to pick against them.

NLCS: PHI over SF in 6 games.

I did already talk about this series before, but I will enlighten you a bit more on why I believe the Phillies will win. Both teams have amazing pitching, and both are amazingly consistent. But, the Phillies have a much better offense. The Giants O didn't really show up against the Braves, but their pitching was enough to send them to their first NLCS since 2002. I don't think the Giants can win if their offense was like that.  The Phillies have shown some vulnerability, mainly Roy Oswalt, but I think the Giants can exploit some of those weaknesses if their offense shows up. This series is really about whose offense is better, and the Phillies O is much better right now. The Giants have the pitching to make this a series, but the Phillies offense is just too good for the Giants to overcome.

Here's hoping that these picks do better, and FOX likes them!

Brett Favre: Such a Distraction

It seems every time we can calm down with the Vikings, something new pops up. Whether it is Randy Moss returning to his first team, or whether it's their 1-3 record, we can never move on from them, and what surrounds the team. They've always been a source of distractions for a long time. And, we can now add another one to that list. That is the Brett Favre textgate saga, crazy as that sounds. Wherever Favre has gone since leaving Green Bay, he seems to bring more distractions than promise with him.

How crazy is this story. Allegedly 2 years ago, Favre sent tons of racy texts and images to a former New York Jet sideline reporter. At the beginning of this saga, Favre addressed the report by saying, "I'm not getting into that. I've got my hands full with the Jets and am trying to get some timing down with our guys, so that's all I'm going to discuss." At the beginning, it seems like it won't become a major distraction for a Vikings team who just acquired Randy Moss. But then, as the week progressed, things got worse and worse for Favre and the Vikes. It was not known of the connection between Favre and the texts, until recently, when Favre dodged the entire issue in his press conferences. What to make of these statements is up to everyone to interpret for themselves. It got worse when the league announced it was aggressively investigating these allegations, and if it was true that Favre was found guilty, he'd be suspended.

What a way for Favre to break his ironman streak, a suspension. He has played through almost every injury under the sun, and started every game since Don Majowski got hurt in 1992, and he'll lose his streak, by a suspension. What a hit to his career. We still have no clue as to if this is true or not, and it may be awhile until we find out. But, this is just another of the distractions Favre has brought along with him since his Michael Jordan moves in August of 2008, 2009, and 2010. The tearful press conference when he retired the first time could melt your heart with sadness that we would never see this legend play again. And then, he comes back to play with the Jets, and it didn't go as well as the Jets had hoped (it cost Eric Mangini his job). Then, he retires again, and tempts the Vikings until the end of training camp in Mankato, until he shows up. We endured another entire offseason of wondering if Favre would come back again. He did, and we know how that ended up.

And this summer, we went through the same shtick again. We waited patiently for his answer, and it seemed he was actually going to hang it up. But of course, that wasn't true. And then, the Vikings started very poorly, and it seemed that Favre may have overstayed his comeback. And finally, this comes up. He's been taking questions from the media for it seems all of his life, and he dodges this question. What has this done to everybody who has done it before? It only made the situation worse. Brett Favre's supposed breakdown in the locker room prior to the Jets game has only heightened the suspicion surrounding Favre. He broke down because he was sorry for being a distraction and yet in the game where he passed the 70,000 yard passing marker, and threw his 500th career TD pass to Randy Moss of all players, the biggest story was textgate.

Brett Favre has done many amazing things in his career, many shocking and stupefying things (He did what?), and those which we've never seen before in the NFL. This is one of those shocking things. Whether it is true or not, this whole story never ceases to amaze me. Even in Brett Favre's ultimate triumphs outside Green Bay, he still is brought down by his own actions. Last year, it was his ankle, this year, Textgate. Maybe Favre should have retired after all.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Week 5 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 4? One of my teams did (I had the New England DST). If you only care about baseball right now, your team will suffer. My advice: read up!


Who to Start:

QB: Eli Manning (NYG) vs. HOU: The Texans pass D has been less than stellar this year, allowing the most passing yards per game, and the 2nd most fantasy points per game to opposing QB’s. This is an extremely good start this week, in the face of Houston’s pressure.

RB: Jamaal Charles (KC) vs. IND: Boy has the Colts run D been playing badly. Last week they allowed 174 yards to the Jaguars, and the Chiefs have a great 1-2 punch at RB. Thomas Jones gets the bulk of the carries, but Charles gets the most yards, so he’s the one to start.

WR: Mark Clayton (STL) vs. DET: I know, a Ram to start? What’s the world come to? Well, Sam Bradford has looked very good, and that makes Mark Clayton a good starting option. He’s facing Detroit, who isn’t known for their pass D, so keep him in your starting lineup.

WR: Marques Colston (NO) vs. ARZ: I know he hasn’t had a good start to the year, but Arizona’s D is playing awful right now (see 41 hung on them by the Chargers). New Orleans has to have a good offensive game eventually, so why not against a bad pass D like Arizona.

TE: Dustin Keller (NYJ) vs. MIN MON: I know the Vikings have a good defense always, but they don’t stop the opposing Tight End very well. Keller has had the 2nd best season for all TE’s this season, so he should be starting in every league this week.

DEF: Atlanta vs. CLE: The Falcons may have gotten a break seeing that Jake Delhomme will be back under center for the Browns. He has turned it over plenty often in the last few seasons, so look for the Falcon D to be opportunistic.

Who to Sit:

QB: Donovan McNabb (WSH) vs. GB: Outside of his great game against the Texans, McNabb has done little for his owners this year. Against a pretty good Packer pass D, that will continue.

RB: Marion Barber (DAL) vs. TEN: The Titans have been very stout against the run this year, so look for Dallas to try to throw the ball against the Titans this week, leaving Barber with fewer carries, and therefore, fewer points.

WR: Malcolm Floyd (SD) vs. OAK: The perennial starter in my lineups for the first 3 weeks and now he’s here. Why? He’s going up against Nnamdi Asomugha.

WR: Larry Fitzgerald (ARZ) vs. NO: I’m not saying sit him always, but with a rookie now under center for Arizona, look for Fitzgerald to see fewer balls thrown his way, especially against a good New Orleans secondary.

TE: Tony Moeaki (KC) vs. IND: Who? The new great Tight End for the Chiefs, that’s who he is. He’s a good player for the Chiefs, but don’t start him against the Colts, who have allowed the fewest yards to Tight Ends this year.

DEF: Tennessee vs. DAL: Tony Romo has had 2 weeks to prepare for the Titans, and he looked good against Houston 2 weeks ago. Look elsewhere for a D to start this week.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 5:

QB David Garrard (JAX) vs. BUF: Why would I ever say to start Mr. Inconsistent? Well, he’s playing against a pretty bad pass D, and an overall pretty bad D. Not a starter every week, but this week, he’s not a bad choice.

QB Shaun Hill (DET) vs. STL: Another case of not-so-great QB, against not-so-great pass D. Hill lit up the Packers last week, and there is no reason to think he won’t do that this week.

TE Jeremy Shockey (NO) vs. ARZ: He had a bad start, but in his last 2 games, he has 14 catches for 136 yards plus a TD. Arizona’s D is bad, so look for Shockey to have a good game.

Good Luck in Week 5!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

My 2010 MLB Playoff Predictions

TB over TEX in 4 games. Rays have too much offense for the Rangers and despite the 1-2 punch that the Rangers have with Cliff Lee and C.J Wilson, the Rangers overall don't have much playoff experience. The Rays do. They should have little trouble winning this series.

MIN over NYY in 5 games. I think the Yankees decision to go with only 3 starters will bite them early and often. They will be worn out if they do make it far, but I don't think they'll get there. Despite the fact the Yankees own the Twins in the playoffs Minnesota has a great home field advantage, and a less shaky starting rotation. Yanks have enough to make it close, but Twins win.

PHI over CIN in 3 games. The Phillies are too good to lose here. They went 5-2 against the Reds in the regular season and no Reds player has substantial playoff experience. The Phillies do, being there 4 years in a row. Too much pitching by the Phillies will doom the Reds.

SF over ATL in 4 games. We can say that Atlanta backed into the postseason, and they have not looked good in September and October. But, the Giants have looked great. Their pitching has been awesome, and with that, their offense doesn't have to do too much to lead them to victory.

TB over MIN in 6 games. Here, Minnesota doesn't have the home field, and that will hurt them here. The Rays pitching is much better than the Twins pitching, and despite the fact that Minnesota does have a good offense, they won't cope well with the Rays great pitching. From top to bottom, I think Tampa is just a better team overall.

PHI over SF in 6 games. The Giants pitching will keep them in this series but the fact that the Phillies have the much better, and much more productive offense will give them more games than the Giants pitching will get them. If San Francisco can get some production from guys like Buster Posey, Pablo Sandoval, and Aubrey Huff in every game, they can beat the Phillies. But, I don't think that the offense will be there every game. The Giants will pose the biggest threat to the Phillies in the NL, but not big enough to take the pennant away.

2010 World Series:
TB over PHI in 7 games: Rematch of 2008 goes the other way here. The Rays are better than they were in 2008, and now they have the experience to boot. The Phillies have the home field, but as we saw in '08, that didn't matter. The Rays have enough starting pitching and offense to keep them in games, and their middle relief is much better. By this point, teams will know how to beat up on the Phillies great starting pitching, and the Rays sure have the speed, and power to do so. This will be an extremely entertaining series, but when it comes down to game 7 in Philly, I really do think that the Rays are the better team. They will win the 2010 World Series.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

My Week 4 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 3? My fantasy teams did, but my real team didn’t (if you know me, you know who that is). Hopefully the momentum continues this week.

Byes: TB, MIN, KC, DAL

Who to Start:

QB Bruce Gradkowski (OAK) vs. HOU: He didn’t get Oakland a win in Arizona, but he opened up the Raider offense. And against the worst pass D in the league, who will be without one of their starting safeties that will make this matchup only more enticing.

RB: Matt Forte (CHI) vs. NYG: He has only averaged 36 yards rushing this season, but due to his contribution in the passing game, he still remains a viable option to start. Against the Giants, who had trouble stopping Chris Johnson, he should continue to have success.

WR: Donald Driver (GB) vs. DET: With Aaron Rodgers being under center, and him throwing against the Lions, Driver should have a great game. Enough said.

WR: Mark Clayton (STL) vs. SEA: He is Sam Bradford’s favorite target, and due to this, he’s caught 17 passes, and 2 TD’s this year. Get him while he still is being targeted, and Steven Jackson is injured, because matchups like Seattle’s poor pass D don’t come around too often.

TE: Dustin Keller (NYJ) vs. BUF: He’s been better fantasy wise than any other Tight End in football not named Antonio Gates, and he should be licking his chops, because he’s facing Buffalo.

DEF: Indianapolis vs. JAX: Boy did the Jags O look horrid last week, with less than 100 passing yards, and allowing 7 sacks to the Eagles. Against the 2 best pass rushers in the league, this trend will continue, so start the Colts.

Who to Sit:

QB: Joe Flacco (BAL) vs. PIT: For the 1st time all year, he looked half-way decent last Sunday. But against the Steelers, who have allowed only 2 TD’s all season, avoid starting Flacco.

RB: Jerome Harrison (CLE) vs. CIN: Boy, how far he has fallen. From being a fantasy hero last season, to a bench warmer this year, he’s fallen a long way. And, with Peyton Hillis emerging as a big back, Harrison’s time will continue to dwindle.

WR: Steve Smith (CAR) vs. NO: With Jimmy Clausen under center now, Smith’s value has taken a hit. And against New Orleans, who has done a reasonably good job stopping wideouts this year, he should be on the bench, despite how good he is.

WR: Calvin Johnson (DET) vs. GB: This is more of a warning than a stern edict. Shaun Hill has struggled somewhat in his time, and with Johnson matched up against Charles Woodson, start with extreme caution.

TE: Heath Miller (PIT) vs. BAL: Despite the safety net factor for Charlie Batch, he should be avoided, because, well, it’s Baltimore.

DEF: San Francisco vs. ATL: One of the highest drafted D’s coming into the year, and now one of the most disappointing D’s around. Against the Falcons, who laid a 41 spot on Arizona 2 weeks ago at the Georgia Dome, they will continue to struggle. They have given up 62 points on the road so far.

3 Super Sleepers for Week 4:

DEF Seattle vs. STL: Because of the special teams’ factor, with Leon Washington now being Leon Washington, they are a nice sleeper if your D is on a bye. Also, facing Sam Bradford without Steven Jackson doesn’t hurt either.

WR Louis Murphy (OAK) vs. HOU: I guess once I recommend someone once, they must be recommended twice, right? Same goes for Murphy, who had a nice week with Bruce Gradkowski under center. And, against a porous Houston Pass D, the trend should continue.

WR Blair White (IND) vs. JAX: Who? The Pierre Garcon of 2010 for the Colts, and that should bode well for him. He will perform well with Garcon and Anthony Gonzalez nursing injuries. Facing Jacksonville doesn’t hurt that much either.

Good Luck in Week 4!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

My 2010-2011 NHL Season Predictions

I wasn't even remotely close last year. This year will be different.

Northeast: 1) BUF 94 Pts 2) OTT 90 Pts 3) BOS 85 Pts 4) MTL 82 pts 5) TOR 79 Pts
Atlantic: 1) PIT 115 Pts 2) NJ 98 Pts 3) PHI 93 Pts 4) NYR 85 Pts 5) NYI 80 Pts
Southeast: 1) WSH 110 Pts 2) TB 89 Pts 3) ATL 84 Pts 4) CAR 78 Pts 5) FLA 75 Pts

Central: 1) DET 100 Pts 2) CHI 98 Pts 3) NSH 95 Pts 4) STL 87 Pts 5) CBJ 82 Pts
Northwest: 1) VAN 105 Pts 2) COL 95 Pts 3) CGY 89 Pts 4) MIN 87 Pts 5) EDM 81 Pts
Pacific: 1) SJ 110 Pts 2) LA 100 Pts 3) PHX 94 Pts 4) ANA 89 Pts 5) DAL 85 Pts

Playoffs: East: 1) PIT over 8) BOS
                      2) WSH over 7) TB
                      6) OTT over 3) BUF
                      5) PHI over 4) NJ

                      1) PIT over 6) OTT
                      2) WSH over 5) PHI
                      1) PIT over 2) WSH

West:  1) SJ over 8) PHX
           2) VAN over 7) COL
           6) NSH over 3) DET
           4) LA over 5) CHI

           6) NSH over 1) SJ
           2) VAN over 4) LA

           2) VAN over 6) NSH

2011 Stanley Cup Finals: 1)PIT over 2) VAN in 6 games.

Any questions, comment below.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Week 3 Fantasy Advice

Did you have a good week 2? I won in one league, failed in the other, but here this week we have good matchups to behold. Read up, and let the controversy reign.

Note: I’m not putting any Patriots, on the list, because you’d start them anyway against BUFFALO.

Who to Start:

QB Michael Vick (PHI) vs. JAX: I would know better than a lot of people (hint), as to how bad the Jaguars pass D is, 30th in the league against the pass for example. Because of how well Vick is playing, he is an absolute must start, as with all other Eagles offensive players.

RB Darren McFadden (OAK) vs. ARZ: He has played so well in the last 2 weeks, why would the Raiders want Michael Bush back? The Cards got torched against the run against Atlanta last week, making McFadden a good option this week.

WR: Malcolm Floyd (SD) vs. SEA: I know I’ve mentioned him like a broken record for the last 2 weeks, and against a pass D that had trouble against Denver last week, he will have success now that the Bolts are back on track.

WR: Santana Moss (WSH) vs. STL: He’s had a renaissance of sorts with Donovan McNabb under center, with 16 catches this year, and going against the Rams, he should continue that trend.

TE: Visanthe Shiancoe (MIN) vs. DET: We have learned in the last 2 weeks that Brett Favre really trusts his Tight End, as he has 18 catches in his first 2 games. Against Detroit, who struggled last week defending the pass, he should have a great game.

DEF: San Diego vs. SEA: The Chargers forced 6 turnovers last week, and with Matt Hasselbeck being a turnover machine, the Chargers D should capitalize.

Who to Sit:

QB: Chad Henne (MIA) vs. NYJ: Logic would dictate that wouldn’t start anyone against the Jets D, and with Henne, its business as usual. The Jets have allowed only 24 points in 2 games, and the Dolphins have scored only 29. Avoid Henne.

RB: Jamaal Charles (KC) vs. SF: With Todd Haley electing to start Thomas Jones in front of a talented back in Charles, only use him as flex starter this week.

WR: Michael Crabtree (SF) vs. KC: Crabtree has been non-existent in the first 2 games, and even though he’s playing a shaky Chiefs D, he worries me, so don’t start.

WR: Bernard Berrian (MIN) vs. DET: He is nursing a sore knee, and with Brett Favre struggling to find his wide outs in the first 2 games, I would avoid starting him this week.

TE: Jeremy Shockey (NO) vs. ATL: He hasn’t scored a TD in the last 11 months, and is now an afterthought in a very good Saints O. Only start him if you’re desperate.

DEF: Denver vs. IND: The Broncos had a great week against Seattle, but to be brief, Indianapolis is no Seattle.

3 Super Sleepers:

TE Marcedes Lewis (JAX) vs. PHI: The Eagles have documented problems defending the Tight End, and with Lewis having 2 of the Jags 3 TD’s on the season, expect him to see some action on Sunday.

RB/FB Mike Tolbert (SD) vs. SEA: With Ryan Mathews out with a high ankle sprain, Tolbert will see the bulk of the carries against Seattle. He had a good week last week, without practicing with the first teamers. He is a prime sleeper this week.

WR Louis Murphy (OAK) vs. ARZ: An Oakland wide out on anything other than the sit list? What has the world come to? He has a good rapport with new starter Bruce Gradkowski, and with Arizona struggling to defend the pass, he is a good sleeper candidate this week.

Good Luck in Week 3!