Sunday, August 5, 2007

Make it Rain

Here's a few players that I'm targeting in my fantasy drafts. Every year I like to make my short list of guys that I'll do absolutely anything within reason to get 'em on my team. If you draft auction style, then save some extra green for these players. And if you draft the old fashioned "serpentine" way, don't be shy about going after these guys a little earlier than you normally would.

Marc Bulger - QB (St. Louis): I'm very high on the Rams offense this year. Bulger put up points like gangbusters last year, and I expect even better production with an improved offensive line, a fully healthy Torry Holt, and new targets in the passing game (WR Drew Bennett, TE Randy McMichael). If you can get me excited about Randy McMichael, something good must be going on. We all know that Steven Jackson will be one of the top three guys drafted in your league because of the same offensive potential, so why not move his QB up your list a little bit? If he stays healthy (and that improved O-line should help him do it), I expect Bulger to finish the season with numbers only behind Manning and Palmer. Make it rain for Marc on draft day.

Tony Romo - QB (Dallas): Around Thanksgiving last year, no one would have thought that Romo wouldn't crack the top 10 at his position going into 2007. But that's exactly where this placekick-holder extraordinaire finds himself. Yeah, his numbers declined by the end of the season, but where's the love? Dallas has a well-balanced offense with a strong running game and good pass catchers in Owens, Glenn, and Witten. Romo will come back this season a little smarter and some good experience under his belt. Expect 5 or more 300 yard games, and 25ish TDs. With that supporting cast, Romo's definitely weekly starter material in a 10-team league, so don't be shy.

Joseph Addai - RB (Indy): We know how good the passing game is -- but we also know that it can't survive without the running threat to keep defenses off-guard. Last year, two players shared the load at RB -- Addai and D. Rhodes, and Rhodes left this offseason for crappier pastures in Oakland. In 2006, the two of them combined for 13 TDs, 1722 rush yards, and 576 receiving yards. Now, I don't expect Addai to get all of that this year, but even if he gets 80%... as the Fonz would say, "Ayyyyyyyy!"

Maurice Jones-Drew - RB (Jacksonville): What's that? Did you say something about Fred Taylor? Fear not, true believers. Taylor had a solid season last year, but that was mostly thanks to MJD spelling him in games and keeping him from getting hurt. If I was a gambling man (and obviously I am), I would not expect Taylor to last another full season like that. He's 31 years old, and he has more of an injury history than one of the Three Stooges. MJD touches the ball on kick returns, and in both the passing and running game. How do you pass on a guy who scored 15 TDs? Draft MJD as a #2 RB, and watch him finish the year with RB1 numbers once Fred is out of the picture.

Roy Williams - WR (Detroit): I'm not excited about too many WRs this year, but I wouldn't mind adding Roy to my crew. Those numbers he had last year? Over 1300 yards, and 6TDs? I'd say that's the minimum you can expect this year. I know Calvin Johnson will take away some looks, but remember -- rookie receivers are no sure thing, even if they are built like someone who was created in a scientific laboratory exclusively to play WR. If anything, Johnson will alleviate some of the double teams Roy saw last year. Playing for the Lions is never a sure thing, but our boy Roy is more of an intriguing #1 WR option to a Javon Walker or Donald Driver. Give him a chance; he shan't disappoint.

Reggie Brown - WR (Philly): I kinda had to talk myself into this one, but on paper, it all adds up. For some reason, most "experts" don't even have Brown in their top 20 WRs. Why not? He plays for Donovan McNabb in an offense so pass-happy that you would think you were watching Arena ball. Plus his QB doesn't have many other options. The old sheriff, Donte' Stallworth (725 yds, 5 TDs), put up good numbers even with an injury-plagued season, then he left town. Reggie Brown is ready to fill those shoes and then some. Oh, and did I mention that he's entering his third year, which is the year that many receivers tend to break out and put up monster numbers? Best of all, Brown should be had fairly cheap in most drafts. The stars are falling into alignment for Brown, so draft him as a #2 and watch him earn a spot in your weekly lineup.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Nowhere to go but up!

Hey! In some barely-relevant fantasy news, Daunte Culpepper signed with Oakland last weekend. Seeing as how Culpepper serves as his own agent, I guess no one else was there to talk him out of joining the train wreck that we call the Raiders.

If Daunte "Fumblerooski" Culpepper is healthy (big if), he will probably be the starter in Week 1. But don't kid yourself -- after he drops a few farts to keep the seat warm, JaMarcus Russell will take over the QB job. Oakland could be eliminated from serious contention early on this season, so it'll be a great time for Russell to take his lumps and learn the NFL game the hard way -- in regular season games.

Culpepper might provide you with an interesting performance here or there during the first 4 to 8 games of the season, but that's pretty much his upside. Remember last season when people were actually drafting him as their starting QB because they were hoping for a Culpepper resurgence in Miami? Yeah... don't be one of those guys this year. I have him ranked around #30 on my QB cheat sheet, and you should too.

What's so great about...

Vince Young? I can't believe all these "experts" who have VY finishing in the top 5 or 6 quarterbacks. Now, if you play in one of those ricockulous leagues that only award 4 points for a passing TD, then disregard this. But for the rest of you -- let me spoon feed you a quick dose of bitter reality -- he's not going win as many games for your team this year like he may have last year. Why? 1) Defenses know what to expect. He's not going to take the NFL world by surprise this year. If they force him to throw more often, how much do you like his chances of putting up 19 TDs like last year? 2) His supporting cast has gotten weaker in the offseason, not stronger. Travis Henry and the steady running game has been replaced by fatboy Lendale White and rookie question mark Chris Henry. His best receiver is... um... Brandon Jones. Where do you have those guys ranked on your draft day cheat sheets? It doesn't quite add up if Young is in your top 10 but the rest of those guys aren't cracking the top 20 or 30 at their positions. 3) I know the guy can run, and I know he'll rack up some yards and scores on the ground, but don't be fooled by a few big games in 2006 when the Titans were playing as if they had nothing to lose. Look for the coaches to pull in the reins a little this year. Give me Phillip Rivers or John Kitna any day (did I just say that?). They have better supporting casts and just as much upside. Oh yeah -- did I mention Vince Young is on the cover of Madden '08? Let someone else gamble on this guy, you have a championship to win.

Jerious Norwood? Yeah, I love the potential, but let's look at the current picture. I know it's hard to believe, but the Atlanta Falcon offense will be even more inconsistent without Michael Vick at the helm. Will he play half a season? All but four games? Too many question marks for me. Joey Harrington is not a horrible backup, but when you combine his limits with a group of receivers that drop more balls than a hooker with Parkinson's, I think Atlanta will find itself hard-pressed to move the chains as often this season. Bottom line: defenses will be keying in on the run game. Then, if you throw in a little Warrick Dunn, who at age 32 is still hovering around like a buzzard, I don't like Norwood's upside this year. I've heard him called a "sleeper" in many other places, but I think he'll finish the year outside the top 25 RBs. If Vick returns and Dunn goes away, however... that's a different story.

Anquan Boldin? There's not much to complain about when it comes to Boldin. That's why I can't figure out why he under-produces in the TD category every year. Sure, Larry Fitzgerald is lined up on the other side of the field, taking away a lot of looks. But if you can only post 11 TDs on 185 receptions in 2 years in a Denny Green offense, you underperformed (1 TD per 16 receptions). I can't argue with the yards, but his stats overall do not warrant top 10 WR consideration. And with Ken "why do we need to throw the football" Wisenhunt at the coaching helm this year, I expect a decline in those yardage numbers owners have come to rely on these past three seasons -- I don't care how much Wisenhunt claims to like the guy. If you want to draft Boldin in the third round of your draft, may I suggest going with Marques Colston or Lee Evans instead? Let someone else overpay for Boldin.

Thursday, August 2, 2007


Are you in a fantasy football league? Are you competitive as hell? Do you disdain losing fantasy matches to the other chumps in your league because they spend all week reading fantasy articles and you don't have that kind of time? Do you laugh at exceptionally inappropriate jokes?

Then you're home, my friend. The Fantasy Minute has your back when it comes to fantasy football. I want you to win your league in just minutes a day. Let those other fantasy fanboys get all hot and steamy over the hours of web content out there each week that pertains to fantasy football. While they spend all night geeking around online for fantasy news, you can spend five minutes on your league, and the rest of the time nailing your girlfriend/wife. Or eating. Or watching "So You Think You Can Dance." (Go ahead! I won't tell anyone.)

The point is: you can get quality fantasy football input in 5 minutes or 5 hours. It's your choice. Who isn't into instant gratification these days? Stick with me and the Fantasy Minute, and I will hopefully have you standing victorious at the end of the season. Then you can laugh and laugh at the rest of the chumps in your league who wasted all that time online every night for nothing. Suckers!

Hope to enjoy.