Monday, September 14, 2009

NFL Week One Postmortem

We fantasy football geeks spend way too much time studying who went where, which coaches and coordinators have moved to new teams and who is recovering from off season surgery. We pretend we have all the information we need when drafting and crow all about our teams to anyone that doesn’t want to hear it.

The cruel fact is this entire enterprise is a crap shoot. Just ask anyone who drafted Tom Brady last season. Or anyone that watched Donovan McNabb get crushed by two 300 pound defensive linemen. Or anyone that drafted Jay Cutler only to be tortured by his opening day.

While we plan to do great, the football fates have different plans. That's why when things go right we all walk around with that extra hop in our step. When it wins us money, it’s provides an extra measure of glee and gloating over our angry opponents.

My LTM (League That Matters) provides the highest scoring team $50. Thanks to Mr. Drew Brees (thanks for the comment, Rob) from the New Orleans Saints, I have a legitimate shot at winning that money the very first week. There are two people that still have a shot. One has Brady starting tonight, but is over 50 points behind me. The other is 45 points back and has Tomlinson starting against the Raiders.

Anything is possible. I still have my kicker (Nate Kaeding for the Chargers) going so even if Tomlinson scores a TD, it will add another point onto my total. Or should.

Laugh if you will, but running a fantasy team certainly makes watching and following the NFL more fun. And – if you have Drew Brees running your team – much more lucrative.

Some random thoughts from the games:

- Apparently not even Adrian Peterson running all over the Cleveland Browns and single handedly winning the game for the Vikings prevents ESPN from putting it all on Favre’s shoulders. Go their home site and there is Sir Stay In The Limelight. It should be Peterson and his vicious stiff arm pictured. That was something else.

- Week one and already we have the ending that probably won’t be beat for the rest of the season. If you haven’t seen the ridiculous catch by Brandon Stokley at the end of the Broncos – Bengals game, then you are missing out. Good luck, rest of NFL in topping that.

- They (evil network executives) televised the Jets – Texans game in Boston and I have to admit Sanchez looked good. Not scary, but efficient and deadly when opportunities presented themselves. Let’s see if that has to do with his abilities or if Houston’s defense just sucks.

- The Eagles defense racked up a whopping 40 fantasy points against Carolina yesterday. That's more than most running backs earned. What the hell?

- Best quarterback performance from a man not named Brees: Joe Flacco. Now let’s see what he can do against a real NFL defense.

- Most impressive win that may be meaningless in the long run: San Fran over Arizona.

- Final score that raises more questions than it answers: Atlanta 19 – Miami 7. Is Atlanta’s defense that good this year? Is Miami’s offense that inept? Is Michael Turner worn down? Does the guy that took Chad Pennington 3rd overall in our fantasy league feel better or worse about that pick?

- Bear fans take comfort. At least you don’t have Jake Delhomme destroying your team’s season. Three interceptions and a lost fumble now make…what? 10 turnovers in his last 2 games? Is that right? On the plus side, he only threw the ball 17 times.

- Who is the backup QB for Carolina, anyway? Maybe I’ll pick him up.

- Fox was showing our area the Minnesota – Cleveland game probably because they think everyone wants to blow Favre as much as they do. They’re wrong, for the record. However, it was interesting watching Brady Quinn. He showed some signs he could be a very good player, but then moments like this happen:

Brady drops back, finds nothing available, feels pressure and starts scrambling. While running to the sideline he sees a receiver open, brings his arm back to make the throw and it simply falls out of his hand. It flips up, bobbles around on the ground and the Vikings recover. This makes me laugh and glad I worship at the altar of Brady. It would also make me feel bad for Cleveland fans if they didn't get to watch LeBron James all winter.

- Game that told us nothing about either team: Colts 14 – Jaguars 12.

- The Cowboy offense looked good yesterday, but they gave up 21 points to Tampa Bay and nearly 100 yards rushing to Cadillac Williams. I’m probably wrong, but this tells me more about Dallas’ defense than Tampa’s offense.

- There is something intrinsically enjoyable rooting against Eli Manning. He was starting against me in fantasy which added an extra layer of joy when he pouted around like a fifth grader. Does everyone in New York (or New Jersey, actually) realize how good their Giants team could be if they had a real quarterback? The defense is incredible again, but having a spoiled, trust fund kid running your offense must be frustrating. Do New York fans even like Eli?

- Supposed fantasy studs who disappointed: Andre Johnson, Steve Slaton, Matt Forte, Jay Cutler, Stephen Jackson, Brandon Jacobs, Chris Johnson, Braylon Edwards, Willie Parker, Steve Smith (Panthers one), Michael Turner, Roddy White.

- Fantasy surprises: John Carlson, Chad Ochocinco, Jeremy Shockey, Joe Flacco, Byron Leftwich, Julius Jones (or basically the entire Seattle offense), Mike Bell

- Random Monday Night Predictions: Tom Brady will not blow his knee out in the first quarter of tonight’s game but will not have a spectacular game, either; Terrell Owens will be booed mercilessly then have a sucky game; the Patriot defense will give notice that losing Seymore has had no effect.

Until next week. Glad to have you back, NFL. My life feels complete.

Today’s distraction: Finally! Proof that ‘The Matrix’, ‘Harry Potter’, ‘Star Wars’, and the new ‘Star Trek' are all the same movie.


A Tribute: deer a train and basketball said...

Slaton killed me. I have a feeling my team is going to blow this year.

BeachBum said...

Houston could be really bad this year. Like really really bad. Let's hope it's just a one game slump because I need Andre Johnson back in last year's form.

Hammen said...

Yup, I need Andre Johnson to perform as well, especially if I'm gonna get a combined 11 points from my running backs next week again.