Category Archives: Blurbs

NFL Week 1 Picks Against the Spread

Lines via Las Vegas Hilton

Green Bay @ Seattle (-5.5)

New Orleans (-3) @ Atlanta

Minnesota @ St. Louis (-3.5)

Cleveland @ Pittsburgh (-6.5)

Jacksonville @ Philadelphia (10.5)

Oakland @ N.Y. Jets (-5.5)

Cincinnati @ Baltimore (-2)

Buffalo @ Chicago (-7)*

Washington @ Houston (-3)

Tennessee @ Kansas City (-3.5)

New England (-5) @ Miami

Carolina @ Tampa Bay (-2)

San Francisco (-5) @ Dallas

Indianapolis @ Denver (-7.5)

N.Y. Giants @ Detroit (-6)

San Diego @ Arizona (-3)

Season Record: 0-0-0

*Lock of the Week

 

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2014 NFL Season Predictions

NFC

 East

  1. Eagles (10-6)
  2. Redskins (7-9)
  3. Cowboys (6-10)
  4. Giants (4-12)

West

  1. Seahawks (12-4)
  2. 49ers (9-7)
  3. Rams (7-9)
  4. Cardinals (5-11)

North

  1. Packers (12-4)
  2. Bears (10-6)
  3. Lions (7-9)
  4. Vikings (6-10)

South

  1. Saints (12-4)
  2. Tampa Bay (9-7)
  3. Falcons (7-9)
  4. Panthers (7-9)

AFC

 East

  1. Patriots (13-3)
  2. Jets (7-9)
  3. Dolphins (6-10)
  4. Bills (4-12)

West

  1. Broncos (13-3)
  2. Chargers (10-6)
  3. Chiefs (6-10)
  4. Raiders (5-11)

North

  1. Benagls (9-7)
  2. Ravens (8-8)
  3. Steelers (8-8)
  4. Browns (6-10)

South

  1. Colts (10-6)
  2. Texans (9-7)
  3. Titans (6-10)
  4. Jaguars (6-10)

Regular Season Awards:

MVP- Aaron Rodgers

OPOY- Peyton Manning

DPOY- J.J. Watt

OROY- Carolos Hyde

DROY- Aaron Donald

COY- Mike McCoy

Playoffs:

NFC

  1. Saints
  2. Packers
  3. Seahawks
  4. Eagles
  5. Bears
  6. Buccaneers

 

AFC

  1. Broncos
  2. Patriots
  3. Bengals
  4. Colts
  5. Chargers
  6. Texans

 

1st Round (Winners Bolded)

Buccaneers @ Seahawks

Bears @ Eagles

Texans @ Bengals

Chargers @ Colts

 

2nd Round

Bears @ Saints

Seahawks @ Packers

Chargers @ Broncos

Bengals @ Patriots

 

Championship Games:

Seahawks @ Saints

Chargers @ Patriots

 

Super Bowl:

Saints 30 Patriots 27

Super Bowl MVP: Drew Brees

 

 

2014 Four Round Mock Draft

Mock drafts, while fun, are fairly pointless.  There is always someone who skews the results by taking Johnny Manziel in the 3rd round or teams on auto-pick end up allowing user drafted teams to become way too stacked.   However, mock drafts do have there uses if the individuals involved are serious.  They allow you to plan out what type of player you expect to be there when you are picking. Going any further than 4 rounds is fruitless as well, because around this time is starts to be much more about hunches than sound logic.

An anonymous Owner and myself decided to do a 4 round mock draft with the actual draft order for our league.  If some picks look strange, you may want to check who was a Future from last season or our unique rules.  I drafted the Orange teams and the anonymous Owner drafted the blue teams.

Untitled

Three Things I liked:

  1. The amount of really good players available at the end of round 2 and the beginning of round 3
  2. The ability to get an elite running back/wide receiver combo with picks 4-9
  3. Cribb getting Adrian Peterson at 4th overall

Three Things I didn’t Like:

  1. Brandon Marshall going before A.J. Green and Julio Jones
  2. I think Sankey has a lot of upside, but I don’t know if I could take him in the 4th round
  3. Julius Thomas over Morris/Martin/Bernard is a stretch considering the dearth of running back talent

 

Road to the Draft

As draft day is quickly descending upon our Showtime Fantasy Football League, preparation becomes more strenuous. Or at least it should. Here’s why your preparation might be/probably is lacking to the point you’re going to butt-fumble your Draft picks away:

sanchez

Common Belief: I can just show up on draft day with a printed copy of ESPN’s Top 200 Projected Fantasy Football Players of the year, pick the next best player available for each pick, and put together a Championship worthy squad…..

…Don’t lie, this is EXACTLY what you did as a newbie to the Fantasy Football game. And Hell, you might actually end up putting together a decent team. More likely, however, is your team will Mark Sanchez all over the place (See Above). It’s the easy way out. How could you be proud of a team you drafted like that? I’ve learned that going “chalk” rarely ever pays off in the end whether it’s FF or an NCAA Tourney Pool.

Luke Kuechly

This is why preparation is so important. Put in the time beforehand and find out what works for you. Do countless mock drafts, view trends, read blogs ;), and most importantly, go with your gut (Unless your gut is to draft Luke Kuechly in the 3rd Round, Jordan). I will say, I love my prep. routine. It’s thorough, fun, and it has been proven worthwhile: Reigning Champ over here. I can’t reveal my routine, but I can say it involves mock drafts, an entire college ruled notebook, and a fine point sharpie. Not to mention, a pretty good amount of time. So come up with your own plan and stick with it on draft day. Just make sure you have a Plan B and C as you never know for sure what curveballs will be thrown your way.

This is what I have found to work for me. It can for you too. Build your routine. Prepare. Plan. Draft. Win Championships. Don’t take the easy way out, unless you don’t take FF seriously. In that case, I wouldn’t want you in my life and you probably wouldn’t even be reading this.

Take the X’s and O’s Over the Jims and Joes

You are building a Fantasy football team. Not a real football team. A Fantasy football team.  When I starting getting into playing fantasy, I notoriously sucked.  I was the fantasy version of Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder with a Jacksonville Jaguar budget.  In a real football game, you were toast.  In a Madden football game, you were toast that was attacked by one of Kahleesi’s dragons.  What’s the most valuable lesson to learn? Real talent does not translate to fantasy production. Here’s a list of talented guys whose systems could hurt their value.

Sammy Watkins:

hi-res-460443917-sammy-watkins-of-the-clemson-tigers-runs-with-the-ball_crop_north

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Freak athlete and one of my favorite college football players to watch last year.  We’re talking about a guy that was the best WR on his team with Deandre Hopkins.  Not bad.  Here’s the deal. If you’ve been doing your homework, you probably already know that there are even better rookie options than him.  We’re dealing with a situation where EJ Manuel is the starting quarterback (PS: Talk to a Florida State fan about EJ Manuel for a minute and see if they think he’s going to be a superstar). His season averages? The math had him averaging 197 passing yds and 1 TD a game.  That’s not enough for Sammy.  He made Tahj Boyd look good, but this is the NFL.  Avoid his training camp highlight reel and understand the offense he is going to be in.

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Humble Pie

Every year, while sitting in Mikey’s basement, we critique every pick. Some people get made fun of while other players get applause with a late round steal or a risky, but well thought out pick. Every one of us leaves the draft room thinking one thing: championship.

Little do we know, that at some point throughout the first month of the season, we’re in for a big slice of humble pie. This slice can come through injury to one of our stars, a high pick not producing, or getting beat out on the waiver wire after bidding on a player who shakes up the whole league. Last year, we laughed at Alex’s “rookie” draft and then he laughed all the way to the championship. We questioned Jordan’s early pick of the Panthers defense and they ended up helping his team to multiple wins throughout the year. Each of us enter the draft and leave the draft thinking we are experts on fantasy football; and rightfully so; we do run the best league this side of the Mississippi.

My taste of “humble pie” came really early last year. I realized that Stephen Jackson is playing like he’s 75 years old, Doug Martin had a sophomore slump, and “The Hoodie” has a huge love/hate relationship with Steven Ridley from week to week. My genius draft idea of drafting three starting running backs with my first three picks blew up in my face by the middle of October. Coming off of a championship year, I, like everyone else, thought I had the winning formula on my team.

While we encourage you to take notes on how a great fantasy football league is ran and how we’ve been working to perfect this league since we were in college watching Sunday football on tiny TVs, I also want to acknowledge how fantasy football, especially “Showtime” can make you feel like a genius and an idiot in a span of a few short months. When we throw our money in on draft night, we’re convinced that we’re going to be getting that money back in six short months. By February, we again realize that we just gave a huge loan to one of our friends in an effort to, for five or six months, show that we somehow have more knowledge than the other nine members of the league.

Lets Go Bargain Shopping

Fantasy Football is all about finding the best value.  Anyone can draft Adrian Peterson in the first round, but it takes a smart player to pass on a big name player because the same value can be found later in the draft.  Everyone, myself included, is more inclined to draft players who are talked about often on TV broadcasts and in the run-up to the game, but drafting big names doesn’t win you fantasy championships.  Bargain shopping wins you fantasy championships.

In this article I will discuss 1 bargain at the 4 major positions compared to a player that is being over drafted based on a variety of reasons.

Overpriced:  Matthew Stafford

If you do not include Stafford’s amazing 2011 season (5000 yards and 41 TDs) his production has been only been slightly above average.  Over the past two seasons, Stafford has averaged 4808 yards, 25 touchdowns, and 18 interceptions.  The yards total is very good, but the touchdowns and interceptions pose a problem to Stafford’s fantasy value.  The main reason he is overpriced is because he is one Calvin Johnson injury away from being a below average fantasy QB.  Johnson accounted for 15oo yards and 12 TDs last year, while lacking a serious 2nd option in the passing game.  If he goes down with an injury, Stafford’s value plummets.

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Draft Him So I Don’t Have To

Fantasy football isn’t always an actuarial science.  In fact, some of the riskiest picks have paid off the most in our league.  Our scoring is a little unorthodox, but I specifically remember how much we laughed in the draft room when Tov drafted the Panthers in round 10 as the first defense. I also specifically remember losing to a team named Spectacles Testicles by about 30 points.  That said, I always have a group of players starred on my sheet that I do not want to pick because of risk.  It doesn’t mean I won’t pick them if they’re the best available, but I’d rather not deal with the risk over the reward.  Here are some players I’d hate to draft if it follows the ADP trends.

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It’s Crunch Time…How Do You Decide Between Closely Valued Picks?

Everybody has their own pre-draft rankings, but what happens when a ranking is too close to call?  You have two minutes left to decide…what are you going to do?  I’ve seen some rookies flip coins in crunch time.  Others go by website rankings.  Then, there are those that may phone a friend. In this post, I will share the ultimate decision making tool in a toss-up draft pick.

I call it the James Franklin Rule.  Let’s be honest, I love James Franklin.  He won at VANDERBILT. Do you know what winning at VANDERBILT IN THE SEC means? It means that James Franklin can identify talent.  While other SEC coaches fought for five star recruits, my favorite coach had to identify a mixture of talent and character (See Two Star Recruit Jordan Matthews). To find his assistant coaches, James Franklin was quoted as saying, “I’ve been saying it for a long time, I will not hire an assistant coach until I’ve seen his wife. If she looks the part, and she’s a D-I recruit, then you got a chance to get hired. That’s part of the deal.”  If James Franklin says it AND it was quoted in Moneyball, you can take it to the bank.

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Most Important Part of Fantasy Football

The best thing about Fantasy Football is draft night.  All of the preparation, mock drafts, and conversations with friends all come to a head that night.  Now, it is impossible to predict who will win the league after draft night, but you can usually spot a few trends that will play out over the season.  For example, in our 2013 draft Paul decided not to pick RBs high in the draft due to the risk level, and instead opted to draft elite players at all other positions.  This decision had him chasing running backs on waivers and in trades all season and ended with him trading Calvin Johnson.  Now this plan was flashy and absolutely before its time since many people are now considering a draft strategy similar to this one, but it may not be the most efficient strategy.

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