Fantasy Sports Chat

Thursday, August 31, 2006

NFC South Preview

The NFC South, this is known for highly competitive football and a lot of bloodshed on the field.
This to me the one of, if not the most challenging division in all of football.

My predicted order of finish is as follows...
1) Carolina
2) Atlanta
3) Tampa Bay
4) Saints

Now, I know people are going to have my head on a platter for thinking the Bucs are the third team in the standings, but there is a method to my madness.

Carolina is one of two teams, I see coming out of the NFC and playing this year in the Super Bowl. There were not many glaring needs that needed to addressed, however Carolina stepped up to the plate and filled those needed holes. They added a solid 2 WR in Keyshawn Johnson, which hopefully will open things up a little bit better for Mr. Automatic (Steve Smith). They got arguably the best running back NOT named Reggies Bush in the draft (DeAngelo Williams) and beefed up a strong defense to begin with.
The running game needs to stay healthy, which is quite the challenge in Carolina and Steve Smith needs to be healthy. If those happen, then Carolina will be on my mind deep into the playoffs.

The Falcons have a good core of talent. I like Michael Vick, but I like Matt Shaub even more as his back up. Duckett is now gone and Ashley Lelie is in town. Yeah, another underachieving receiver. It's the defense that needs to credit though, they choked last season and caused headaches for many a fantasy owner. However, veteran leadership has been brought in with Lawyer Milloy and John Abraham. These two guys will help energize a defense that will return to being a top 10 defensive unit in the NFL.

The Bucs, yes Cadillac Williams is 'nasty', when he's healthy. But, Chris Simms? I just don't see it this year, I need to see a full season out of him for me to become a believer. Also, where in Tampa Bay is Michael Clayton? Fantasy hero in 2004, Fantasy goat in 2005, who shows up in 2006? I hope hero, becuase I have him on many teams. The Buccanneers have done more with less, but they are a feast or famine pick right here.

Lastly, the New Orleans (wait San Antonio, wait Baton Rouge) Saints. Last year, the team without a home after the devestation of Hurricane Katrina had a challenging time focusing on football and who can blame them. I wouldn't be focused if everything around me was in thousands of pieces and under water. The good news is that, the Saints are coming home, they did find a quarterback who understands that you need to throw the ball (Drew Brees) and they picked up, arguably the most dynamic player to come out of college in decades in Reggie Bush. I think Bush will be used a little bit of everywhere, including receiver as Duece McAllister is recovering from surgery, but has performed well in pre-season. Bush will be in the slot and take over a little bit of the #2-receiver role since Donte Stallworth is now in the city of Brotherly Love. With a new coach and new star in New Orleans, it is just a matter of time until things turn around in the Big Easy.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

AFC South Preview

Hmmm....the AFC South the story of two have's and two have-not's.
Real big suprise here, actually not really.

Predicted Order of Finish
1) Indianapolis
2) Jacksonville
3) Houston
4) Tennessee
* I flipped a coin and held a series of potato sack races to determine 3 and 4 between Houston and Tennessee. I will explain that later though.

Indianapolis manhandled everything in their path last season had a streak of consecutive victories that had the '72 Dolphins a little nervous. But, then came the playoffs, then came the emotionally high-Steelers, cue "The Fumble" and "The Tackle". But don't forget Vanderjagt and his big mouth, shanking a kick that would have kept the Colts alive in that game.
They have had an entire off-season to fix some glaring ommissions. The Colts send Vanderjagt and his ego packing, while swiping Adam (Mr. Clutch) Vinatieri from the Patroits causing a power shift West from Foxborough to Indy. Edgerrin James ran to the Land of Sun and Millions to play for the Cardinals. The Colts quietly draft LSU stud Joesph Addai to replace him and he could be a starter by mid-season.
The Colts have to 'maintain' and if that can be achieved, then the playoffs will have the Colts penciled in.

The Jacksonville Jaguars are determined to knock Indy down a step or two. This cocky, young, energetic team upgraded the corner with Brian Williams. However, it really needs to be time for Byron Leftwich to step up. (My friend can tell you I am the biggest supporter of Leftwich outside of the Jacksonville area.) He needs to be healthy and he needs to be a force for the Jaguars. He lost Jimmy Smith (who finally retired), but can Matt Jones, Ernest Wilford, and Reggie Williams become more reliable.
Lastly, Fred (I stubbed my toe and I am questionable for the rest of the season) Taylor is back, but his backup and one of my sleepers (Greg Jones) is out for the season with a torn ACL. If Taylor goes down, rookie Maurice Drew takes over. Frightening.

Houston was number 3, but then Domanick Davis decided to be the spawn of satan himself and screw over the money league team! I am livid and this further solidifies that money leagues shouldn't draft in early August. They did make the right move, in not drafting Reggie Bush, because they have...oh wait Domanick Davis. Yes, the defense will be improved as will the passing game with Eric Moulds and Gary Kubiak running the show.

Tennessee also makes number 3, let's say (3.5). They draft Vince Young, and Lendale White. They got David Givens, but let the franchise go in Steve McNair. I just don't understand it. But wait it gets better, because we have Kerry Collins. (Who was unemployed until about 4 days ago.) Tennessee has made one thing distinctly clear. They are in the rebuilding mode this season. I say let the kids play and see what they can do.

Later the NFC South, with teams that are geographically in the South. (I am talking to you Indianapolis)

Monday, August 28, 2006

NFC North Preview

Lions and Vikings and Bears, oh my.
(I just couldn't resist)
The NFC North, the old-time, pound out the football, bloodbath that true football fans love.

The predicted finish is as follows...
1) Chicago
2) Detroit
3) Minnesota
4) Green Bay

Da' Bears. Quick who would win in a fight Ditka or a hurricane? Trick question, the Hurricane's name was Ditka. (I had to do it, I couldn't resist.) The defense is there, but is the offense there. That's the big question leading up to the season. No, Brian Griese is not the answer like most of you Bears believers would like to think. The Bears need to figure out who i the 2 receiver with Mushin Muhammed and who is going to be their running back. Benson or Thomas Jones. Everyone is Chicago and everyone playing fantasy football are dying to know.

The Lions are 2nd. What the hell? The (yawn) Lions. Mike Martz thinks he can save them, the truth is he cannot save them at all. Joey Harrington run out of town. Oh wait, you mean he's really bad. Get an offensive line and give him time to throw the ball. No running game, everyone covers the receivers. Look, to completions. Harrington also can't help the fact that the management of Detroit couldn't find their way out of a paper bag.
I liked Harrington and thought that he got a raw deal. Martz will earn his paycheck this season, because Jon Kitna and Josh McCown are no Joey Harrington.

Let's all hold hands and become one with the team. The Vikings need a spiritual retreat to get everything back on track. The Vikings are a mess both on and off the field. They have tons of problems and thought that trading away Daunte Culpepper would be a good idea. Yeah, it wasn't. Brad Johnson is the second immoblile quarterback in the entire league. (Bledsoe is number 1). They overpaid for Chester Taylor who isn't going to do much, with a porous offensive line (Yes, they take Steve Hutchinson away from Seattle but does that really matter, when the day is over?
The Vikings are at least a year away, but actually two years because the players are not the brightest around.

Lastly, let's all ask ourselves what the hell is Brett Farve still doing in the league. Didn't Farve want to have a winning team around him, but Javon Walker is gone and the 3-headed monster at running back can't be a good thing. Yes, the defense is upgraded with Charles Woodson and AJ Hawk, but how are they going to score points? Farve will gaurantee one thing. He will put fans in the stands by playing out his 'last' season.

Counting the days til opening night in the 'Burgh.
Juba

AFC North Preview

Continuing with the preseason predictions and their fantasy implications. Today we will get caught up a little bit and look at the AFC North.

The AFC North is projected like this....
1) Pittsburgh (they are still the defending champs and deserve to be on top because of that)
2) Baltimore
3) Cincinnati
4) Cleveland

First in the AFC, this division historically is "a last man standing wins, no holds barred, grudge match." Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Cleveland. Pittsburgh the defending champs may have lost some personnel off their title winning team (Randel El, Hope, Bettis) however, they landed Santonio Holmes is the draft and typical Steelers style football let's replace within. Pittsburgh doesn't burn up the headlines by getting the top free agent on the market, they have their system and the players understand the concept of "Steeler Football."
The big question is will Willie Parker be able to withstand the full season of being the primary back or will guys like Deuce Staley and Verron Haynes step up and try to replace the immortal Bettis. Roethlisberger, needs to stay focused this season and after the near-fatal motorcycle crash I think that he is more focused than ever.

Next we find the Baltimore Ravens, who last season couldn't move the football down the field to save their lives. That apparently will all change as Steve "Air" McNair comes in from Tennessee and reunite with wide receiver Derrick Mason (he suprisingly had over 1,000 yards receiving last season.
This has quickly turned into a veteran team and the question will be if they can maintain the intensity over a full season. Also, a side note here Jamal Lewis will not be a full-time starter my money is on Mike Anderson to take over.

Now the Mighty Cincinnati Bengals (now many Cincy fans are irate) over the prediction of 3rd place. They won the division last year not the Steelers and Carson Palmer is improving with each and ever snap from surgery. They did add big Sam Adams (always a good thing, oh wait the football player not the beer.....anyways) to clot up the middle and let the linebackers run a little more freely. I think that the defense overachieved a little bit last season and that the offense will struggle because no one is afraid of the mighty bengals anymore.

Lastly, the Browns (now don't get me wrong I think that the Browns will be improved) are a good team playing in a bad divison. If the Browns played in the NFC North or AFC East I might be able to predict a few more wins out of them and a possible playoff hope (maybe 5% percent instead of 2%). However, Channing Frye is their permanent starting quarterback, which may or may not be a good thing for the Browns imfamous Dawg Pound. I like what Romeo Crennel is doing but he is a year maybe two from shaking things up in the AFC North.
One final note, Reuben Droughns went 8th overall in my moeny league draft. 8th! and no, the owner is not directly related the Droughns. (Excuse me, but thanks for your donation to the eventual champions.)

Until next time,
Juba

Friday, August 25, 2006

Fantasy Sports Chat

NFC EAST PREVEIW (more like massacre)

So far this division has been the craziest from the most competitive, most psychotic, and most annoying.

The Cowboys, Giants, Redskins, and the Eagles. (Does someone really have to win this division?)
I suppose I am jaded because only the Eagles didn't manhandle those Mighty Bills in a Super Bowl, but Westbrook is evil and has cursed every fantasy team he has been on. (Therefore, my hatred of the Eagles.)

Anyways the predicted order of finish looks as this....
1) Philadelphia
2) Dallas
3) Washington
4) New York

Now first off, didn't the Giants win this division this past season. I think that they did. Don't they have a Manning at quarterback? I didn't think that this team has regressed to being predicted in the bottom of the division, but then again it's the NFC East and I can't focus my attention on that for very long.
I have this theory that every New York Giant fan in the tri-state area is currently driving to Sportsline and beat them with all their might. Every thread from the predictions were irate Giant fans. So, irate I was happy that I wasn't at college in New York State because I would have had to listen to this crap. All the f*ing time. I am an AFC boy and honestly, if I have to listen to how the Giants are the best team in football on Super Bowl weekend again (especially when the Seahawks and MY Steelers are playing) I will have to do something I truly regret.

Okay, stop angry lunatic rampage. Anyways, The Eagles are at the top and the Cowboys are 2nd for one simple factor. Terrell Owens. For the Eagles it's addition by subtraction and the distraction is something that the Cowboys brass should be able to keep in control (if not Parcelles will reitre). McNabb is in control of this team and rightly so, it is his team. Andy Reid will find a way again, the road of the NFC no longer will go through Philly but the Eagles will be clawing all season.

The Cowboys made a good move and a bad move recently. Good - Getting Owens , Bad - Getting Owens, Vanderjagt (punk kickers need to kick or they will be released), not getting a solid veteran backup for 'Statue Drew' Bledsoe. Don't be suprised if Bledsoe is knocked out of more than a few games early this season. At these the "Behind the Star-E True Hollywood Story" will be entertaining coming out of Dallas.

Washington - News Flash. Antawn Randle El is not worth the money you spent on him. Neither is everyone on your roster. Welcome to the L.A. Dodgers or N.Y. Mets (before they turned things around) of Football. Washington is the funniest team this side of the Mississippi. Let's keep Brunell and surround mediocre targets around him. Yes, Santana Moss had a great season last year, but I think that he is 1) the product of a system and 2) so happy to be out of New York that last season was a fluke.
I am not impressed with the Redskins. It will take time and this team doesn't stop and reflect they throw money around like idiot college students buying every iPod accessory on the planet. Newsflash- Brunell hurt and in comes, Jason Campbell (Yep, playoffs written all over there)

Lastly the Giants. Yes, the secondary wasfeatured on extreme home-field makeover. Oh wait, that was a dream. Their defense was a suprise to many in fantasy leagues, but this season they will show more of their true form. Also, Tiki Barber cannot keep up with his monster season from last year - can he? Eli is still growing up, but Sinorice Moss isn't going to be a factor much this season. Remember this - Plaxico Burress in playoff game = dropped passes and choke artist.

Next let's cruise to the Central.
Send me your thoughts.

Juba

Thursday, August 24, 2006

AFC East Preview

I saw today the CBS. Sportsline has already begun their preseason predictions for the actual football season and I am a little confused and wanted some clarification on things.

Sportsline, won't return my emails or phone calls and I believe they have completely lost their minds.....
Let's talk about the AFC East. Ah I know it well, being an hour from Buffalo and having gone to college with ignorant JETS fans for the last four years. (One advantage of graduating, I hate those J-E-T-S, JETS, JETS, JETS chants. I want to punch someone in the face when I hear it.)

Predicted order of finish
1) Patriots (Wait, let me regroup myself out of shock and awe for that.) (Yawn)
2) Bills (Am I dreaming? The Bills? Has Jim Kelly been revived and is able to guide them to victory again?)
3) Jets (Oh, how I loathe you)
4) Dolphins (Aren't they the 'trendy' pick this season?)

The Patriots they should win barring the plauge, apocolyptic disasters occurring.

The Bills in 2nd. This is the ONLY, place outside out Western New York who puts the Bills this high. The Bills, are a 3rd place team at best this season unless Lee Evans turns into Andre Reed and Willis McGahee become vintage Thurman Thomas. Just because Marv Levy is back in the helm, doesn't mean he is bringing back the old magic.
Wasn't it directly after the draft in April all the football experts were questioning what the Bills were thinking? The Bills were being talked about as a potential front-runner for a Adrian Peterson or Brady Quinn at the top of next year's draft.

The Jets, yep your qb is injury prone, your backup is too. The running back is long overdue for a breakdown, but hey Wayne Cherbet is still there (wait, what was that he finally retired too). I like what they did in the draft and they are going to be 'building' something special with POTENTIAL, but they are barely behind the Bills in my eyes.

The Dolphins, waht can I say about Miami. Ricky Williams loves hit pot so much he fled to the CFL (He is also currently out with a broken wrist.) This has meant that more people know who the Toronto Argonauts and Edmonton Eskimos are but in all seriousness. Ronnie Brown was drafted number 2 for a reason. He is that good. It's addition by subtraction in my mind and this guy is nasty. He is a top back and for fantasy players should be a favorite of many.
Culpepper has arrived and the Dolphins now has someone who can throw the ball to Chambers and McMichael. Joey Harrington is the back up there, but Culpepper is the important piece.
People have wanted to cut the Dolphins and give up on them for quite some time, but a buy low team ready to become playoff bound is Miami and those tricky Dolphins.

Until next time
~Juba

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Fantasy Sports Chat

Blog on Baseball....

The stretch drive is here and I wanted to take a quick moment and chat about some ongoing things I have noticed going on in baseball.

First Thing's First
In this corner weighing in at 180 LHP from the Toronto Blue Jays, Ted Lilly and in this corner weighing in at a robust 225 Head Coach, John Gibbons. (I mean...) If you missed this, what were doing? Lilly refuses to be taken out of the game and he and Gibbons go after each other in the dugout. I thought that their was lots of security at the Rogers Center, where are the mounties when you need them?
What is going on in Canada? The Blue Jays were the chic pick to snake a playoff spot from the Red Sox and/or the Yankees. Right now they couldn't find their way out of a paper bag. Roy Halladay is their saving grace and if he doesn't win the Cy Young this year it is a crime against baseball. Without him the Blue Jays are at the same level as the Orioles and Devil Rays. (That's tough to say as an Orioles fan.)

Mighty Mauer and the Minnesota Maniacs
Joe Mauer will win the AL batting title, the first for himself and the first for a catcher in ages. "Mauer Power" is all the rage in Minnesota, who again finds themselves back in the playoff hunt after a horrendous start to the season.
Justin Morneau is the first Twin to hit over 30 homers and 100 rbi's since 1987 (Yep, Gary Gaetti and Kent Hrbek both did it then). Johan Santana is in prime form, but don't forget about the suprisingly play of Michael Cuddyer, Jason Kubel, Jason Bartlett (once thought of as a AAA castoff), and Nike Punto.
The bullpen shuts the door almost everytime. I wish I had a bullpen like the Twins. Joe Nathan, could be the best closer this side of Rivera, and setup guys Rincon, Reyes, Crain, and rookie Pat Neshek (his quirkly delivery has made him nearly unhittable--- 3-0, 0.84 ERA, 32K-3BB, 21.1 IP after dominating in AAA--- 6-2, 14 SV, 1.95 ERA, 87K-14BB, 60 IP). Now those are results out of a rookie.

Oakland pulling away, again
Raise your hand if you gave up on Frank Thomas (I did). He is on pace for 33 HR, 94 RBI, .278 AVG. He is outperforming the last two seasons combined. Oakland will win the West if injuries and Milton Bradley don't cost them.
This next stretch is crucial as Huston Street is on the DL and the Rangers and Angels are still fighting for their playoff lives.

No Abreu, No Problem
Bobby Abreu goes to the Yankees. Okay, fine. The real story is the Phillies in the wild card race. My potential sleeper team is back from the dead. I thought the apocalpyse would happen first. Ryan Howard, Pat Burrell, Chase Utley, and Jimmy Rollins are leading the "Brotherly Love Phillies" back to contention and with Glavine aching for the Mets, the East may not be out of reach.

Wild, Wild, NL
Everyone is still alive for the playoffs, the NL Central and NL West are cat fights and will be until early October. I am smelling one game playoff scenarios. (No holds barred action)
The Cardinals, the Reds, who wants the Central. Will the Dodgers band together with their egos and drive towards the playoffs? Will the Padres, Giants, and D-Backs sneak in? Or could the Rockies move closer.
The Wild Card is crowded as ever in the National League and an interesting thought for everyone to ponder... Cincinnati is currently atop the Wild Card race with a 66-60 record (.524 winning percentage). However, they would be no where close to the playoffs in the AL the Chicago White Sox (.584), the Twins (.581), the Red Sox (.552), the Angels (.532), and yes the dysfunctional Blue Jays (.532) would be leading the NL Wild Card, but are in the wrong league.


Until next time.
Juba

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Fantasy Sports Chat

More for Gore

With yesterday's trade of Kevin Barlow to the New York Jets. Frank Gore barring injury is king of the castle in San Fransisco. He has already been on my radar screen as I am a founding member of the Barlow hurts and fantasy team he's on.
Remember Gore was supposed to start in front of two running backs named, I believe McGahee and Portis at the U in Miami. I think those guys turned out all right.
I think it is pretty simple to say Gore will be going for more.

Any thoughts, how's are the drafts going?

Until next time.
Juba

Monday, August 21, 2006

Fantasy Sports Chat

Fantasy Sports Chat

I had another draft over the weekend with friends from back in the states. It would have been better, but with everyone's schedule we had to do an automated draft, which sucks big time.

I dispise the automated draft, because it is so much more fun to read into the other players and their strategies and tyr to pysche them out.

I luckily ended up with the 5th overall pick (out of 10) so it really didn't matter where yo were, because there was going to be quality players everywhere. Also, the commissioner failed to tell me we also had to draft individual defensive players, which I wasn't prepared for I would have listed a few that I wanted, but I didn't. Therefore, I was subject to whatever crap Yahoo gave me.

My roster (Toronto Argonauts) shapes up like this offensively....
qb- Culpepper
qb- Farve
rb- Barber
rb- Cadillac Williams
rb- Frank Gore
rb- Chester Taylor
wr- Hines Ward
wr- Reggie Wayne
wr- Reggie Brown (someone has to catch McNabb's throws)
wr- Keyshawn Johnson
te- Tony Gonzalez
te- Mercedes Lewis
k- Nate Kaeding
def- Pittsburgh
individual defensive players are overall weak (I won't even waste the time by posting them)

Looking at this lineup without making any moves, I predict a middle of the road team here. I have my work cut out for me.

Until next time.
Juba

Friday, August 18, 2006

Fantasy Football 06

The leaves are starting to turn the 4th of July has come and gone and now it's time to get down to business. It's time for fantasy football and as millions have discovered it's an ugly addiction that just cannot be avoided.

This year I have cut back and I am only involved in four leagues.
My money league team shaped up like this:
(My co-owner and I picked 10th out of 12 teams this year)

qb- Tom Brady
qb- Jake Plummer
rb- Cadillac Williams
rb- Dominack Davis (he was a reach but the dropoff of backs after him were rough)
rb- Ryan Moats (westbrook hasn't had a healthy season in years)
rb- Deuce McCalister (he broke my heart last season, but I still managed to run away with the title thanks to Barber, Chris Chambers, Roy Williams, and Marvin Harrison)
wr- Hines Ward
wr- Lee Evans
wr- Mike Clayton
wr- David Givens
wr- Mark Clayton
wr- Michael Jenkins
te- Todd Heap
te- Jermaine Wiggins
k- Josh Brown
k - Josh Scobee
D- Seattle
D- Minnesota

it's a 12 team league. so notable suprises were Reuben Droughns going 8th overall. I had a toss up between Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams at 10. Brady falling to the 5th round. I was quite satisfied with that.

This year my league added a flex position of wr/te to our starting lineup. So the run on wide recievers caught me off guard and in a panic had to take Lee Evans early, because it was him or a low tier #1 receiver (ie-Eddie Kennison) Also, Deion Branch went with the pick right before mine and he was the player I was looking at.

You thoughts and let me know how your drafts went.

Until next time.
Juba