Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Latest Bailout: Week 8 NFL & Fantasy Predictions

I took the week off and pawned off my work on a good friend (aka C-Go).
Okay, I can at least admit I added the pictures and (hilarious) captions.

Trust me, it's someone who has a more adept touch when it comes to the NFL and (especially) fantasy. But ESPECIALLY fantasy.

Even if he is a Redskins fan.
Although admittedly, one of the eight sane ones.

Now THIS is savvy!!!

Here we...go!!!

Read easy, as I’m popping my proverbial blog cherry with a guest spot on PHSports. Luckily we have a lot to talk about heading into Week 8 of the 09’ NFL season, so I’ll dive right in.

Time for the 10 Questions of the Week

One word: BEAST!

1) After back to back victories against the Giants and Dolphins, can the Saints remain undefeated by topping the Falcons on Monday night?
2) Which of the 3 undefeated teams, if any, will fall this week?

3) The Giants… contenders or pretenders?

4) Could the Cowboys actually be the class of the NFC East?
5) How did there come to be so many awful teams in this league?

6) Can the Jets keep pace in the AFC East with a win against the deceivingly decent Miami Dolphins?

7) What’s all the fuss about the Rams/Lions game getting blacked out?

8) Are the Houston Texans a legitimate AFC Wild Card contender, and can they play consistently for 4 quarters? Ever?

9) Can LaDanian Tomlinson prove, at least for one week, that he’s not running on fumes against a pathetic Oakland Raiders rush defense?

10) Will Brett Favre, on his old tundra, prove to the Packers brass that they should have waited just a little longer for the indecisive iron man?

Weekly Picks
Fresh start in Week 8… I like the sound of that.

How have I not seen this picture before?
More on Alex Smith (Niner-prediction & fantasy-wise) below.

St. Louis Rams @ Detroit Lions (Off)
These two teams are in the same realm of awful, so this one isn’t as easy as it looks. It’s actually an intriguing match-up to me, and more may be on the line than you think… the St. Louis Rams are on the clock! I’ll take the Lions at home, even though Stephen Jackson will come close to 150 total yards… and no touchdowns.

Minnesota Vikings @ Green Bay Packers (-3)
Favre always steps it up in big games, and this as big as they come for Brett Favre in the regular season. Take the Vikings plus the points.

San Francisco @ Indianapolis Colts (-12)
Call me old fashioned, but I just can’t picture Alex Smith (past or present) coming close to Peyton Manning and the Colts in Indy. The line is -12, I have a feeling it’ll be even worse than that… take the Colts.

Denver Broncos @ Baltimore Ravens (-3)
The Broncos are in for a big let down coming off the bye. I’m taking the hungry Ravens minus the 3. The Broncos have proven themselves, undoubtedly, but the Ravens are in desperate need of a win and emerging sophomore Joe Flacco will not let them down.

Wildcat thoughts BELOW!!! Clement shudders.

Upset Special #1
Atlanta Falcons @ New Orleans Saints (-10)
The Falcons are coming off of an eye opening loss in Dallas, and Matty Ice won’t lay down for the undefeated Saints. I’m not saying Drew Brees won’t lead New Orleans to their first 7-0 start since Jim Mora’s 91’ squad, but it’ll be closer than Vegas thinks. Take the Falcons plus the points.

Upset Special #2
Miami Dolphins @ New York Jets (-3)
It’s hard to believe the Dolphins are 2-4; playing as well as they have against quality opponents. The Dolphins will buck the trend this week by beating Mark Sanchez and the Jets on their own turf. The Jets defense will keep it close, but if Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams can continue their recent success, the Dolphins will roll.

Survivor Pick
Damn Philadelphia Eagles in Week 6 losing to the damn Oakland Raiders. Damn. This week’s mock survivor pick…San Diego (hosting Oakland). I bet you haven’t picked them yet!

The Iggles burned a TON of peeps in Week 6 (Clement and Goings, included). Beware the allure of the Green Man. Seriously, you need to be watching THIS SHOW immediately.

All players listed below would be considered 50/50 start/sits for this weekend in most 10-12 team leagues, taking into consideration bye weeks and injuries.

Don't hold it against Goings that he wants you to start a Ram. They are playing the Lions, you know.

Marshawn Lynch
Donnie Avery
Visanthe Shiancoe
Austin Collie
Darren Sproles

Just avoid this altogether.

Reggie Bush
John Carlson
Knowshon Moreno
Braylon Edwards
Alex Smith (either one, honestly)

Fantasy Lock: Steve Slaton
Fantasy Flop: Greg Jennings

Parting Thought…

Oh Danny Boy!!!

One team I have yet to mention during my first PHSports write-up is my beloved Washington Redskins. That’s right, I’m a Redskins fan. I’m sure like most Redskins fans this season, times are tough. During the bye week, I want to stay away from the on-field issues and look off-the-field for the latest debacle… well, technically off the field.

Reports have surfaced, and I can tell you first hand from attending ‘Monday Night BeatDown’ (as I like to call it), that the Redskins front office has banned Redskins signs from bring signs or posters into FedEx Field – anti-management posters in particular. Fans were tossed from the game and banned from the stadium for bringing in their “Vinny Sucks”, “Dumb and Dumber”, and “NFL Save Us!” posters and sentiment. One woman was reportedly forced to turn her “Trade Danny!” t-shirt inside out.

If this isn’t rock bottom, I don’t want to stick around for what rock bottom is. Dan Snyder has alienated his fan base with a laundry list of decisions and antics such as these. Since when can you be escorted out by security for calling the owner of the team out on all of his mishaps? Is this Nazi Germany? Is there not something written in that constitution thingy that allows people to speak about something, or something like that? What’s next? “The Star of Danny to be given (Forcibly) to the First 100,000 Fans in Attendance”.

Clement returns next week...unless I can talk Goings into closing out the season.
Wish me luck!!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Early Edition: Week 7 NFL Predictions

First off, fantasy gets the weekend off. Two reasons:
1) I stink at it.
2) Thursday is a little earlier than I like to predict and prognosticate.

So why the Early Edition? (Remember that show?) Simple. I'll be in Dallas this weekend with the family.

Yeah, I'll check this place out (Falcons @ Cowboys will be on the games being picked this weekend, btw) along the way.

Time for the 10 Questions of the Week


1) If (when) Sanchez struggles on Sunday in Oakland, does Clemens see any snaps?
2) Anybody outside of New York and Anaheim (aka LA) that has interest in the ALCS over the NFL weekend slate?

3) Is Cedric Benson ready to lead the NFL in rushing?

4) How will Frank Gore's return impact the 49ers?

5) Speaking of those Niners, what's the over/under on 1 reception for rookie wideout Michael Crabtree?

6) Does anyone actually watch Fox's Brothers? Besides Strahan's family, I mean?

7) Matt Ryan or Joe Flacco: who wins a playoff game this season?

8) Is Roddy White becoming a top-5 NFL receiver?

9) Is Marvin Harrison now officially done?

10) Does Jim Zorn survive after Monday night?

Weekly Picks
Last Week: 5-3 (I bet on the Skins and paid the price. As for the Iggles, more on that debacle later.)
Season Total: 20-13 (I made a target of 25-15 at this point. A 5 and 2 week means I need to pick an easy one or two. No dice!)
Upset Special: 2-1 (I went with three road dogs and got 2 out of 3. I would've won big on Arizona and Houston, but the Giants really let me down.)
Survivor Selection: 4-1 (Philly breaks my stranglehold on selecting the "easiest game of the week". Believe me, I wasn't alone. Nevertheless, it still stings.)

Minnesota Vikings @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-4)
I'm taking the Stillers, barely, and the home-field advantage. Minnesota can survive losing this game. In fact, you don't want too too much hype this early in the season. Seriously.

San Diego Chargers @ Kansas City Chiefs (+ 4 1/2)
I think this is the week the Chargers get back on track. But mark my words: they aren't winning the AFC West this season. The playoffs aren't out of the question though...yet.

Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins (+7)
In a last second change, I'm switching to Philly. I felt like the Skins might be troublesome; however, the reports from practice this week have been flat and uninteresting. No juice left in DC worth mentioning.

Buffalo Bills @ Carolina Panthers (-7)
Why do I believe in Carolina and the awfulness that is Jake Delhomme? Steve Smith pouts and responds with 2 TD receptions.

NY Jets @ Oakland Raiders (+7)
I am a negative negative man. The Jet wideouts are extremely banged up and this team can't travel west. If you find this above 7, take the money and run.

Upset Special #1
Atlanta Falcons @ Dallas Cowboys (-4)
My mom is a LEGIT die-hard Cowboys fan. I know, hate away. I sympathize with the team for her and for Troy Aikman (always a personal favorite). She bleeds the team colors and has never been to a game in Dallas. She missed out in the final year of Texas Stadium, so she deserves a win in her trip out to Big D. Ain't gonna happen. In fact, I question these odds entirely. Matty Ice on the road is enough to eeek out a W. Sorry mom.

Upset Special #2
Chicago Bears @ Cincinnati Bengals (- 2 1/2)
I had a feeling last week with Houston and it would've paid off handsomely. I don't want to sink the Bengals yet, but I think the Bears are a better team and can play well in this envrionment. In fact, I'm picking them to win outright in a rather entertaining matchup (who would've thought that earlier this season?).

I'm dead in the Survivor-pool. I'd love to target the following squad though: Indianapolis. Not the toughest pick in the world, right?

Thanks for the crappy London-matchup Goodell. Thanks.

Parting Thought of the Week


Let's play the "what-if" game. Crabtree may see 12-15 snaps this week and perhaps even double that next week. Some wild rumors have him starting (opposite Ike Bruce), but still not seeing too many snaps. If the 49ers are able to target Crabtree for a big play or perhaps in the redzone, how does Coach Singletary respond to his former holdout rook? I know I'd love to see it.

Enjoy the weekend slate...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Fresh off the Bye Week: Week 6 NFL & Fantasy Predictions

After taking a week off, I'm back!
Let's be nice and call it a bye week.
In case you didn't know, it came just at the nick of time. Whew.

Time for the 10 Questions of the Week...

Can the Broncos, fresh off of an impressive win against the Patriots at home, truly ready to step up with the NFL's elite and take down divisional-rival San Diego?

1) Can Dick Jauron save his dignity and upset the Jets?
2) Is there a major trade in the works, which is so unlike a typical NFL trade deadline (outside of the Edwards/Adams deals)?

3) Are people truly realizing the scope the Gaines Adams-deal may have on the Bears defense?

4) Are the Rams going 0-16?

5) If Washington loses to KC, is Zorn out even BEFORE the bye week?

6) The the Bengals truly a 5-1 team?

7) Jay Cutler or Matty Ice: who ya go this Sunday night?

8) Braylon Edwards feeling 2 for 2 with TD catches in his first two games with the Jets?

9) Ray Rice is second in total yards from scrimmage in the NFL. Trend or a telling statistic?

10) Seriously, are the Saints for real?

Weekly Picks
Last Week: 4-4 (Not my strongest weekend; however, I took a lot of risks. After a "bye week", I expect a stronger performance. Although there are way too many HUGE numbers out here to target too many games.)
Season Total: 16-10 (I'm putting a target out there. 25-15. It can happen. It can.)
Upset Special: 4-2 (Lost a little momentum. No sweat, 2 picks this week will help!)
Survivor Selection: 4-0 (It's just too easy right now with some of these horrid teams out there.)

Kansas City Chiefs @ Washington Redskins (-6 1/2)
Tricky tricky Vegas. Both teams stink. Skins, somehow, win by a touchdown.

Tennnessee Titans @ New England Patriots (-9)
Number still seems kinda big, even for an 0-5 road Titan team, until you realize two things:
A) New England doesn't lose back-to-back games.
B) Collins isn't long for this starting role, Vince Young or not.

Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+3 1/2)
I thought the Panthers would play better last weekend, although the Skins play everyone (bad and really bad) pretty close. The Panthers win, not big but big enough to cover this somewhat surprisingly tight number.

Upset Special #1
NY Giants @ New Orleans Saints (-3)
I wish I could find this number at -3 1/2, but it doesn't exist. The Giants are worth the risk; especially without putting real money on it.

Upset Special #2
Arizona Cardinals @ Seattle Seahawks (-3 1/2)
I refuse to believe in Seattle, even at home. Maybe I'm giving Arizona WAAAY to much credit. Who cares? I want to. So I will!!!

Upset Special #3
Houston Texans @ Cincinnati Bengals (- 3 1/2)
This prediction is gonna bite me in the ...

Survivor Selection [Gone: New England, Minnesota, Baltimore, & NY Giants]
Philadelphia is going to WAX the Raiders. Not too much brilliance needed to make this pick o' the survivor week.

I'm taking a new route on fantasy. I'm gonna whipe the confusing scoring system OUT and make things very very VERY easy. Start these 5 guys and sit these 5 guys. They're all 50/50 (often FLEX or last-resort) starts. Enjoy the wealth of knowledge!!!

Start (TE-edition)
1) Leon Washington
2) Greg Olsen
3) Mercedes Lewis
4) Devrey Henderson
5) Benjamin Watson
Extra: Josh Johnson (believe it BABY!)

Sit (WR-edition)
1) Lee Evans
2) Jericho Cotchery
3) Vincent Jackson
4) Washington D
5) Bernard Berrian
Extra: Larry Johnson

I know you missed me. See you next week!!!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

In Case You Missed Me...

After a week without predictions, I could make excuses left and right...but you deserve better. Like this kind of better (below)...

Happy Hour and Yankees beisbol took over Friday night. Time with the wife - mainly drooling over Kristen Bell in Couples Retreat (eh, iffy comedy) - took care of Saturday as well. My badness.

As for Sunday morning...I just plain forgot.

I'll definitely check in next week; especially with far improved matchups on a stronger schedule. I'll also return to dissect picks, prognostications, and some fantasy "advice".

Until then...

Parting Thought
Any day in which the Red Sox are eliminated from the MLB Playoffs AND Tom "Golden Boy" Brady & Belicheat lose...America wins.

Credit: AP

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Your Job's Your Credit!!! Week 4 NFL & Fantasy Predictions

Much like the opening two titles to this weekly column (Lightning in a Bottle, I’d Like To Touch Jennifer’s Body, Falling, Falling, Falling) and we’re sticking with the nonsensical title route. In fact, it's not going ANYWHERE anytime soon.

Time for the 10 Questions of the Week...

Is Cedric Benson truly a must-start in fantasy these days. Absolutely!!!

1) Which fantasy star will be missed most on Sunday rosters: Michael Turner or Larry Fitzgerald?
2) Can the Jets survive their trip to the Superdome down two corners (Sheppard and Strickland)?
3) Will Rashard Mendenhall take advantage of his opportunity this weekend in a primetime game?
4) Is LT going to be an injury nightmare each and every weekend?
5) Are Virginia Tech players naturally undisciplined in the NFL?
Seriously, check out the names and consider it.
6) Which Redskin back should've been traded MOST a few years back: Portis or Betts?
7) Might the Lions have a different type of streak (
winning?) in mind after this weekend?
8) Who's your post-4 Weeks MVP gonna be?
Does his name rhyme with Shmoo Schmees?
9) Which Saints wideout will see the most of Darrelle Revis?
10) How many INTs do you have for Derek Anderson this Sunday?

Weekly Picks
Last Week: 5-2 (Carolina played closer than 14 points - a late pick-6 doomed me - and Miami suffered from a Pennington injury on their trip out West. The game was brutal beforehand, although much closer. Still a solid week.)
Season Total: 12-6 (I'm picking tougher games, with fewer cupcakes than most. I'm gonna set a target of 20-10. It's gonna take a rock solid Week 3 to do so.)
Upset Special: 3-1 (The Phins had won 7 in a row in San Diego and were giving 5.5 points. I bit off more than I could've chewed. Colts big @Zona was an easy call, but far too many people made it.)
Survivor Selection: 3-0 (Picking the Ravens to annihilate the Browns wasn't exactly rocket science.)

Let's make these short and sweet...

Guess who is your NFL touchdown leader after Week 3. Yeah, Mr. McGahee.

Tennessee Titans @ Jacksonville Jaguars (+3)
Jack Del Rio sucks and the Jags have the worst "homefield advantage" in the NFL. Look for the Titan D to wake up and stack the box against MJD. Titans roll.

Baltimore Ravens @ New England Patriots (-1 1/2)
The game is in Foxboro. I want to see Joe Flacco drive his team down the field when they're trailing in a key game. Oh wait, he did that in the Divisional Round last year. Too bad Brady has done it a lot more. Pats win, barely.

Dallas Cowboys @ Denver Broncos (-3)
Denver could win this game and become a quasi-legit 4-0 game. Tashard Choice is the best RB in Dallas. Because he gets carries on Sunday afternoon, Dallas wins a close one.

Detroit Lions @ Chicago Bears (-10)
Same old Lions. Bears roll as Forte FINALLY gets on track. Although memo to fantasy owners, his rookie season may be his statistically best. Exactly how many Bear RBs have staying power in Chicago since Sweetness. Zippie.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Washington Redskins (-7 1/2)
They're teasing you to take the Bucs. Don't. Who the hell is Josh Johnson anyways? At least we don't have to hear teases about a 3-1 Skins team (which would be a complete fraud).

Upset Special #1
San Diego Chargers @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-7 1/2)
Not sure about LT, Polamalu, or why this spread is so big. What I do know is Phillip Rivers isn't intimidated by anyone. I like the Stillers, but not at this number to cover.

Upset Special #2
Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings (-4)
A-Rod typically doesn't win games like this, on the home or on the road. Ironically, it could be Ryan Longwell who walks away with the game-winning points (another former Packer). Notice who's name I'm not mentioning? This number won't be covered, one way or another.

…Survivor Selection… [Gone: New England, Minnesota, and Baltimore]
NY Giants @ Kansas City Chiefs
You can't pick on the Browns and Rams every week. Plus, both have divisional matchups. Give me the Giants, who reved up Jacobs quite a bit last week. Things are gonna continue to stink for Todd Haley and company.

Fantasy Studs and Duds
[Note: Scoring this week was a tricky as it has been in recent memory. Let me explain.]

...Last Week...[4-3-1, 15-11-1 on the year. Iffy iffy]

Boo Ya: Santana Moss was LARGE, Brett Favre was retro-Favrian in a GOOD way, while Watson and Maroney STUNK up the joint.

What the ???: Matt Cassell completed only 9 passes, but two were for TDs. Len Dale White barely got any touches, but in TD-heavy leagues...he did score one.

Meh: Manningham had less than 60 yards, Shockey didn't eclipse 75 but was over 50 as a tight end, and Berrian caught a season-high but was nowhere near 100 yards or a touchdown. White didn't have 10 touches not 30 yards though, so his TD was neutralized in points per touch leagues quite a bit. Tricky tricky to interpret. Gonna call it 1-1-1. for this week...

A big "holla" to all Santana Moss owners this weekend. Expect a back-to-back BLOWUP!!!

1) Earl Bennett will catch one of Jay Cutler's 3 TDs this weekend. A Chicago Bear QB is gonna toss 30+ TDs this season. His name is Jay Cutler.
2) Heath Miller will choose this weekend to catch one of his 3 TDs on the season. If you're in a pinch, waiver-wire the Steeler tight end.

3) Eddie Royal is breaking out of his funk this week with 75+-yards and a TD. Bank on it.
4) The Titans D is out there in a ton of leagues. The Jags will make them look good, with at least 1 pick-6 this weekend.

1) Don't expect much from Cadillac Williams or Derrick Ward this weekend. Not much at all.
2) Lee Evans is going to end up being the biggest loser in the soon-to-be TO melodrama in Buffalo.
3) Glen Coffee isn't going to be the fantasy-beast you expect this weekend.
4) Zach Miller isn't the only Oakland starter you should have in your fantasy lineup. No Raider should earn that honor.

Parting Thought of the Week


A two time winner of the NFL's Comeback Player of the Year award, Chad Pennington's career should be appreciated...even if it may be over. The guy has been discarded a few too many times (especially by the team I love) and he's responded with class, dignity, and more than a few wins. A few of my fondest memories...
A) Leading the Jets to a 41-0 dismantling of Peyton Manning and the Colts on Wild Card Weekend.
B) Following a preseason injury, he cheered on his team and worked the playcalling on the sideline (unlike Michael Vick, who was wheeled around in a wheelchair by his team owner).
C) Flexing his gun, with a torn rotater cuff, after a deep TD pass during a road win against San Diego on Wild Card weekend.

Chad...hope to see you back under center next year.