Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Week 9 Postmortem

A few quick notes before we get to football.

1: Second weigh in was yesterday and I’m down to 206. I told myself that if I got to 205 I was treating myself to an Al’s chicken salad sub (simply awesome if you aren’t from Boston). Alas. If I can get to 202 next week, same deal applies.

2: Today I went to the gym, voted, found a new bus route that takes me to the train (although there are a LOT of stops along the way and I’m wondering if it’s any quicker than walking) and wrote this blog entry. Army’s got nothing on me!

3: I wanted to address Hammen’s post from yesterday about not caring or investing himself in politics. I think a lot of the younger generation feel the same way and I think I know why. Because all objectivity regarding politics has gone out the window. All the talking heads on television and in newspapers have some slant or agenda regarding one candidate or issue and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to figure out what’s fact and what’s political ‘truthisms’. It’s becoming near impossible to figure out what one candidate actually stands for any more.

Add to this that a majority of Americans are strongly (often fervently) associated with one party or another. This leads to biased opinions. It doesn’t matter what qualifications or opinions one candidate has, if they are Republican or Democrat then most party people will defend them to the death. People I consider intelligent and level headed become adamant that Sarah Palin would make a great President one day? Seriously? Are they watching the same woman I am?

We have a die hard conservative in our office and when I asked him what he thought of Palin after she had been named McCain’s running mate, he replied ‘I had my doubts, but she knocked it out of the park at the RNC.’ If she was on the Democratic ticket, he would be trashing her for the same things she is now saying under the Republican ticket.

Anyway, Hammen, I agree with you. When a political discussion pops up, I head to the other side of the room. Nobody cares what I think, anyway, so I just head over to the beer supply and tell dirty jokes.

That said, everyone in the younger generation should really be taking notice of who is getting elected and what is going on. Even if you don’t vote. Because it will be you guys, who in 10 or 15 years will be paying off this ten trillion dollar debt we’re ringing up. When you guys are in your 40s and you’re paying taxes out the nose because the government has no money left, you’ll care.

You’ll care a lot.

On to football.

Reason number 35 why fantasy football is more aggravating than playing golf:

I was up against the only undefeated team in my league. Drew Brees is on bye, so I’m forced to play Jay Cutler. Fine. Cutler has a decent game, but only because Denver is desperate and behind, which forces Cutler to throw about 98 passes. He does a respectable job for me.

My receivers are Roddy White and DeShaun Jackson. Both have been spectacular for me. (note: Chris Chambers was on bye, other wise I would have started him over Jackson). Running backs are Brian Westbrook (a no brainer) and Willis McGahee. McGahee is listed as questionable, but all reports are that he’s going to play. Dude’s been hampered by one injury or another for the entire season, but he’s been putting up solid numbers the last few weeks.

And he’s playing Cleveland. How can I not play him?

Dallas Clark, Arizona’s defense, Atlanta’s kicker round out the rest of my roster. Except for my flex spot.

In this ‘The Only League That Matters’ (meaning major cash on the line), we have our choice of starting a third running back or a third wide receiver. This makes for much gnashing of the teeth when it comes time to set lineups.

I – being boy genius that I am – use that spot for Tim Hightower. I’ve had the guy on my roster since the beginning of the year, but have never used him. After watching him for the first time a few weeks ago I thought ‘Damn, Arizona would be crazy to keep him on the bench’ and placed him in my flex spot. He was going against St Louis so even if he split time with Edgerrin James (also on my team) he should get plenty of touches.

Sure enough, he kicked ass for me. Arizona’s even named him their starter! Score one for me! You’ll see why this is highly important in a minute.

My undefeated opponent had Tony Romo, but we all know a broken pinky and Jessica Simpson sucking the life out of him (quite literally, I’d bet) has him on the shelf. So he’s been starting Matt Schaub for the last few weeks and been doing fantastic with him. He has Brandon Marshall and Andre Johnson for receivers, Mewelde Moore and Justin Fargas at running back, Kellen Winslow and his staph infection at tight end, the Rams kicker and Vikings defense.

For his flex option he puts in Anquan Boldin. Yeah, I know. Boldin catches two touchdowns and Johnson catches one. Fortunately (VERY!) for me, Schaub leaves his game with a leg injury and Justin Fargas shit the bed. I’m looking very good for a few moments until the check on the Ravens – Browns game.

I use the ESPN box scores to see how players are doing and Sunday was no different. Oh, look Ray Rice is having a killer game.....

Wait…..

Where’s McGahee’s name?

It’s nowhere to be found!! ANYWHERE!!! Nothing under Rushing, nothing under Receiving. I do a quick search and find nothing. Go to my fantasy team page and find no news.

It becomes apparent that I’ve been hosed. McGahee isn’t playing at all and the friggin’ ‘questionable’ status was either a ruse to confuse the Browns (which is redundant) or a legitimate last minute decision. I didn’t find out until well after the game was over that he had dressed and was active but was only being used in case of emergency. Well, fuck me! I get a big fat zero under one of my running backs, thank you very much Baltimore Ravens.

Oddly, this same exact thing happened to me last year when I played this same guy. I had Addai on my team and he was listed as probable. It turned out that my best buddy’s wedding was on a Sunday and I was nowhere near a computer to check any last minute news. The guy I was playing walks up to me halfway through the wedding and says ‘Addai isn’t playing’, then smiles and walks away as I let loose a steady stream of stunningly creative expletives.

Perhaps I take this too seriously. It turns out I won and handed this dude his first loss of the season, but it wasn’t easy. I like easy.

Other football thoughts.

- Despite their loss, I really like the Green Bay offense. A lot of weapons to open up the field.

- Was Chris Berman really the best guy to interview Obama and McCain one last time on national television? This is the best we could do?

- Al Davis thought Lane Kiffin was the problem with the Oakland Raiders? They had negative yards in the first half. Man alive! Just terrible.

- For the first time all season, Detroit didn’t start out a game down 20 points. Amazing! They still lost, but baby steps. Step one: don’t get blown out and have the game over in the first half.

- I know, I know, he’s a Super Bowl winning quarterback and he’s definitely better this year, but signs of the old Eli still pop up from time to time. Like when he threw right to the Dallas safety for an easy TD return. Or when he went to pass the ball and it just fell to the ground. Sorry, but I can’t take Eli seriously until he stops pulling shit like this. How many elite quarterbacks can you name that simply lose the ball as they’re bringing their arms back to pass? Obviously if he or the ball was hit it would be one thing, but this was a contact free play.

- What is going on with Jacksonville? Last year in the playoffs they scared the living hell out of me. This past weekend they lose to the Bengals. Right, the previously winless and atrocious Bengals. Those Bengals.

- My buddy – who last week had the crap duo of Terrell Owens and Antonio Bryant – decided to sit both of them for….wait for it…..

Devin Hester and Plaxico Burress. Burress I can understand (although he's becoming a major attitude problem), but Bryant was going against Kansas City. You play anyone on your team if they’re playing Kansas City.

So, total score for his two starting wide receivers: 10 points

Total score for Owens and Bryant sitting on the bench: 31 points.

Total of loss: 20 points.

Ouch! Explains why he’s 2-7 at this point.

- Is there any fan base more anxious for MRI results than Bear fans? Either Orton comes back fairly quickly or they’ll have to resign themselves to another stint of Rex Grossman games.

- Speaking of quarterback changes, Brady Quinn will be starting for the Browns this weekend. Only 8 games too late.

- Dallas looks abysmal. How long do they stay with Wade Phillips? The team has regressed every year under him. I say they fire Phillips and hire Lane Kiffin. At least the Raiders played hard for him.

- The three best defenses in the league right now: Giants, Steelers, Titans. The Ravens are a close fourth, but giving up 27 points to Cleveland and 31 to the Colts makes it tough to put them in the top three.

- Denver’s offense has gone straight into the crapper after a great start. What gives? Can we stop putting Mike Shanahan’s name on the list of ‘genius’ coaches now? The Broncos’ defense sucks, now their offense sucks and they’re sitting at a nice even 4-4. On the bright side they’re still in first place.

- Lastly, I know Belichick and the Patriots keep saying that they have complete faith in Matt Cassell, but it was odd they didn’t draw up a game plan that had Cassell picking on the young Colt safeties throughout the game. The first half was run heavy with the passing plays focused on short or swing passes. That’s not a plan of a team that trusts it’s own QB very much.

That said, Cassell did make two fantastic long passes that were both dropped. Sure touchdowns to Gaffney and Moss were muffed. Moss’ in particular was right on the money and would have been a game changer if he didn’t fumble it and kick the ball into the stands.

That’s all for today. Get out and vote as long as you’re informed and not just filling in random circles.


Today’s distraction: Some entertaining pictures ‘taken at just the right angle’. The girl reading a book on the bus is bizarre.

1 comment:

Hammen said...

You expanded on some of my thoughts and explained them better than I did. Thank you sir.

All the same, I was mauled by the MOM Squad today at work when they found out I wasn't voting. And not mauled in the good kind of way to be mauled by Moms.