Archive for August, 2005

Fantasy Football: The Florence Sasquidgets

August 31st, 2005 Comments off

So here’s a post that probably doesn’t hold any interest for anyone but me. But it’s my blog so, you know, it’s my blog. Drafted the first of my two fantasy teams last night. The Florence Sasquidgets. I’m feeling very good about the chances of taking the league this season. (I finished second last season — was in first place until week 17 — and third the season before. It’s a cumulative points — as opposed to head-to-head competition — league.)

Here’s a rundown of whom I drafted, when and why.

1. Peyton Manning, QB, (fourth overall pick in the draft) — Predictably, LaDainian Tomlinson, Shaun Alexander and Priest Holmes, went one, two, three. That left me with the choice of going into a RB panic knowing I wouldn’t be picking again until the 17th overall slot (it’s a 10-team league), and grabbing someone just to make sure I’d have a top RB, or picking the best player still available. I went with Manning, who I had rated exactly fourth (after the three RBs who’d been picked). Picked him in the second round last year (12th overall pick; first QB drafted) and, as I hardly need to say, was amazing for me. So, there you go.

2. Corey Dillon, RB, (17th overall) — Again, the best player still on the board when my pick came around. I bet he has a better year than some of the RBs picked ahead of him. So I’m counting myself very fortunate that he survived this deep. And, in fact, I’m sort of feeling like I had a hand in that (though there was no strategy involved). I think if I’d taken, say, Ahman Green in the first round, the run on RBs would have kept going right to the end of the round and Dillon would have been picked by number six or seven overall. But after I went QB, so did some others. Then Randy Moss and T.O. went, which left some RBs on the board as the order came back around to me.

3. Clinton Portis, RB, (24th overall) — Another value pick. (I’m gonna stop pointing out that I picked the best player available at the time — to which I’d add the qualifier “who filled a need on my team” — and just point out the three instances, in late rounds, where I didn’t do that, OK?) If the Redskins get it together, Portis could have a fantastic season. If they don’t, he’ll still get lots and lots of carries (so long as he stays healthy). I’m actually a tad worried about this pick, but I had a plan, and I wasn’t ditching it in the third round.

4. Andre Johnson, WR, (37th overall) — I think the Texans are gonna come on in a big way this season. And even if they don’t, I’d be surprised if Johnson didn’t have a big year. I certainly expect him to catch more than the 79 balls he caught last season. If he can get it up to 90 (and maybe get his TDs up to 10), I’d be a very happy guy.

5. Reggie Wayne, WR, (44th overall) — I don’t know about this pick, honestly. I needed a second starting wideout. And Reggie was without question the best still available. And if Peyton throws him lots of balls, I’ll be beyond psyched (twice the fantasy points for every completion). But if something goes wrong with the Colts, I’ll be regretting having put two big-ass eggs in one basket.

6. Brett Favre, QB, (57th overall) — When Brett Favre is available at the end of the sixth round, and you’ve got two RBs and two WRs, you don’t think about what else you need. You take him and relax knowing you’ve either got the best backup QB in your league or some amazing trade bait.

7. Ced Benson, RB, (64th overall) — I don’t care how long he held out, the guy’s gonna be Chicago’s only offensive weapon, and rookie RBs can play. And I’m only allowed to start two RBs in this league, so I probably won’t even think about him until week four or five anyhow.

8. Deion Branch, WR, (77th overall) — I’ve gotta start three WRs in this league by virtue of the fact that the swing starter has to be a WR or TE and you’d have to be an idiot to start two TEs on a fantasy squad (unless they were Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzalez — and even then), and while I wouldn’t look to any WR in the Pats system that spreads the ball around so effectively as my number one or two, having Branch as my number three feels pretty damned good to me.

9. Chris Brown, RB, (84th overall) — Might never start for me. Might only come in on bye weeks. And, no, I’m not at all concerned about Travis Henry taking away carries. It’s not like the guy’s my top RB, you know.

10. Heath Miller, TE, (97th overall) — I had to draft a TE eventually. And, yeah, technically, there were “better” TEs (read: veterans) available when I made this pick. But you know what? After, like Gates, Gonzalez and maybe Witten, they’re pretty much all the same. And I’ve had LJ Smith on my team in the past. He did shit for me. So why not take a chance that this guy breaks out? Worst that happens is that he’s as worthless, in fantasy terms, as pretty much every other TE and I dump him and grab someone else, which is what I do with this position all season every season anyhow.

11. Michael Bennett, RB, (104th overall) — Either he doesn’t come on (or stays hurt) and sits on my bench until I need to waive him to pick up another player, or he comes on and either sneaks into one of those starting slots or ends up going somewhere else in a trade. Either way, I’m willing to take the shot in round 11.

12. Sebastian Janikowski, PK, (117th overall) — A decent kicker on a high-powered offense. Should get the job done.

13. Braylon Edwards, WR, (124th overall) — The odds that Edwards will stick on my roster are about the same as the odds that a rookie wideout on a rebuilding team will have a breakout season. Actually, make that exactly the same.

14. Indianapolis Colts Defense (137th overall) — My strategy with defense is pretty much to switch week to week based on matchups. Indy is holding a place for now. If they pull in the kind of takeaways they did last season, they may stick. But probably not even then.

15. Eli Manning, QB, (144th overall) — When I realized that whomever I picked here wouldn’t be on my roster by kickoff Sept. 8, I decided to have fun. I opened and closed my draft picking Mannings. Yeah, that’s the kind of thing I think is (mildly) funny. What’s it to you?

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