Scramble for the Ball: Let's Get Ethical

by Bill Barnwell & Ian Dembsky

Ian: For starters this week, Bill and I are going to touch on some ethics questions that affect all of us Rotoheads now and then. We encourage you to weigh in with your thoughts in this week's forum. By the way, we repeatedly refer to fantasy football owners as "he" or "him." This is to save space, but is not intended to say that you female Rotoheads don't deserve mention. If you're willing to break the male-Rotohead barrier, more power to ya!

Issue #1: The first place team in your league has just completed a trade with a team that is already out of playoff contention. The trade does help both teams, but is it fair for a "lame duck" team to help out one still fighting for a title?

Ian: My opinion is absolutely yes. As long as the season's still going, if the manager of a team that's already been eliminated wants to improve his chances of being a spoiler, who's to tell him he can't? Let's not forget that fantasy football is also about having fun, and the owner of the dead team signed on for that fun when the season started. If he wants to help his team so he can enjoy trying to win the few weeks he's got left, then more power to him.

Issue #2: Marques Colston is listed in your league as tight end-eligible, in addition to wide receiver where he actually plays. Is it fair for his owner to line him up as a tight end?

Ian: My default answer is definitely "yes." Sure, the guy's a wide receiver, but he was originally thought to be a tight end, hence the label. This kind of thing happens in other fantasy sports as well -- especially baseball and basketball. In baseball, an unusual substitution can leave you with a first baseman's bat at your catcher slot. In basketball, center eligibility is as coveted as just about anything else. We're subject to our league websites, but can certainly take advantage of what's offered.

One caveat, however. If your league's commissioner saw Colston unowned after his big first week, and also saw he was allowed at both tight end and wide receiver, it would have been reasonable for him to email the league before that week's waivers to say that whoever picked up Colston would only be allowed to place him at wide receiver. Establishing this before anyone tries to pick him up makes it a timely ruling. Once someone already has him though, it would be highly unfair to change his status at that time.

Bill: Doing so would open up a whole boatload of Pandora's Boxes. Hey, LT's great at quarterback! Let's allow him to slide in there!

Issue #3: A top team is matched up against one of the weaker teams in the league. In fact, the owner of the weaker team hasn't even noticed that his quarterback and two of his wide receivers are out injured. He also doesn't seem likely to care at this point. Is it ethical for a different owner in the league to email the guy and ask him to set his roster straight, so at least he's got a chance to take down the other team?

Ian: This seems to me to be one of the more debatable points out there. I'm a little undecided on this one, but I tend to lean toward "no, you shouldn't email another owner and tell him to set his roster properly." I know some people think it's very O.K., and do it all the time. I think it's clearly bad form on the part of the delinquent owner, but one team's idiocy is another team's gain. Telling that other owner to fix his roster just seems to be headed into the territory of conspiracy to take down another team. I guess I can't fault other owners for doing that if they feel it's O.K., but I can't say that I do.

Bill: I disagree, and this is coming from someone who does occasionally do this. In fact, I feel even stronger about this than Ian does. If a person has forgotten to set their roster for a week, or neglected to care about his roster altogether, the Commissioner (and no one else) should be able to insert his highest-drafted guys at each position who aren't on a bye at 12:00 PM EST on Sunday. If their kicker or defense are on a bye, the Commissioner should be allowed to waive them temporarily for the highest-rated active kicker/defense on waivers, with the understanding that the replacement will be waived immediately after the week is over for the previous kicker/defense. If you need this three times, you probably shouldn't be participating next year.

Issue #4: You're in a rotisserie league, battling for the top spot. You noticed that a team lower in the standings has a chance to pass the team one spot ahead of you in passing yards, so you basically give away to him one of your extra quarterbacks who happens to be better than his current starters. He passes the better team in passing yards; you gain in the overall standings. Is this fair?

Ian: Admittedly, rotisserie-style football is pretty rare, and this tends to affect other fantasy sports more. But it's an interesting issue that comes up now and then. The owner that pulls off this shrewd move is certainly proud of the creative steps he would take to move up in the world. But is it reasonable? I say no. The issue here is that you just "gave away" the player. It's clear that you're conspiring to take down the higher team, which I'm not a fan of. On the other hand, if you can find a deal where you get reasonable talent back for what you've given up, and it happens to help the other team so that it helps you, then more power to you.

Bill: So, in other words, pretend to get value. This seems eminently reasonable to me as well. Fantasy football is cutthroat, people. If you can get an advantage, do it -- even with the trade above.

Check out the Football Outsiders comics archive and Jason's wacky Gil Thorp blog.

Ian: Now, back to the gridiron. My, how things can change. The Colts have gone from potential undefeated team to seriously flawed in a rather short span of time. (Actually, they were always seriously flawed, but now people are realizing it.) Injuries are once again besieging the New England Patriots, but this time they're having trouble filling in the gaps. Carolina, thought to be a "good team with a bad record," is now pretty much officially a "bad team." Jeff Garcia could very well be leading the Philadelphia Eagles to a playoff berth. The Titans are a scary team to face. The 49ers' run at a division title fell waaaaaaay short. Denver's dominating defense is now getting dominated. The New Orleans Saints will probably have a first-round bye in the playoffs. And LaDainian Tomlinson is scoring touchdowns like crazy. O.K., so the last one has been going on all season long. It's never a bad time to mention what he's been accomplishing, though. But all the other instances are why ya gotta love the NFL. Nothing can be taken for granted. Not even my failures at picking games; I not only went 3-0 with Best Bets, but somehow managed to win my local picks pool. What's going on?

Bill: Tomfoolery? Chicanery? I have spun downward into an embarrassing mess. My picks suck. The Giants are terrifying. The sad thing is that the mediocrity has nothing to do with Ian picking before me; the only game I've wanted to choose was the Patriots-Packers game, which I was right on; it's just everything that was going right before is now going wrong.

Loser Leaguers of the Week

QB: Even the mighty can fall when they don't hold onto the ball. Tom Brady's mighty 3.1 yards per attempt and two fumbles earned him a -1 for the week. Rumor has it that each time Brady is the Losingest Loser of the Week, Bill Belichick cuts a Patriots wide receiver at random. This week, it was Doug Gabriel. Next week, Troy Brown might be lining up across from Ken Walter. David Garrard really does just win! Unfortunately, he doesn't appear to be much of a quarterback. 79 yards and an interception while beating up on Indianapolis works when you have some MJD to chase it with, but that's not going to happen every week.

RB: Where have you gone, ye of high success? Brandon Jacobs takes this category down this week with a single point -- ten yards on eight carries is a Ron Dayne day. On the bright side, he didn't fumble, blow any blocking assignments, or tip any swing passes to the opposing team with hands of stone, so he was slightly better than Dayne. I think the operative word for Ron Dayne catching passes when he got to the NFL was "groping." The NFC South comes up slightly behind, as Cadillac Williams and DeShaun Foster both finished with two points. I feel bad for Cadillac at this point -- every time I see him run, he looks powerful and for the half-second of free space he has, he's even majestic; it's just he gets swallowed up after two yards because Tampa Bay has no passing attack to speak of.

WR: Five guys, one point each. Roddy White, Peerless Price, Reggie Williams, Bobby Wade, and, yes, Chris Chambers. I'm not going to press the Chambers issue anymore. Roddy White would be a Loser League MVP if he could just manage to get two catches a week.

K: Shayne Graham tried. He really did. Missing an extra point is almost guaranteed to earn you a feature in this column -- unfortunately, he had to kick four extra points as well to sully his name. That leaves him with a -1 and ties him with Phil Dawson (who missed a field goal and scored a lone extra point).

Keep Choppin' Wood Award

Ian: There are plenty of worthy candidates for their overall effort this past week. The Indianapolis "run defense" surely deserves mention. Glad they gave up a second-round draft pick for Booger McFarland! New England's offensive line was atrocious against the Dolphins. Jon Kitna's four turnovers were rather detrimental to his team's chances against Minnesota. In Tampa Bay ... Who knows what's going on there. Maybe the managers from "Major League" decided to give them a series of fines for good play, or offered a bonus to the guy named Least Valuable Player this season. Regardless, they pretty much all stink.

Anyways, this week's Keep Choppin' Award winner is none other than ... Deion Branch. In what was one of the very few close games this weekend (only three were decided by less than 10 points), Deion cost the Seahawks a chance at a key divisional victory when he caught a 19-yard pass on fourth-and-20, and instead of diving forwards for a probably first down, instead ran sideways towards the middle of the field before being tackled a yard short. As Aaron mentioned in this week's Audibles -- and I agree -- it seemed pretty clear that he could've had the first down if he just caught the ball, then ran straight ahead. Instead, the Seahawks lost a pivotal NFC game that seriously hurts their chances for a first-round bye in the playoffs. Well done Deion; you're this week's Keep Choppin' Award winner!

Best Bets are BACK!

Ian: (3-0 last week, 17-22-3 overall)

After a 3-0 week last week, I'm feeling good, as I am about this week's bets. On to the picks.

CHICAGO (-13.5) over Tampa Bay

This might the biggest line ever where I'm surprised at how low it is. I thought it would be in the -17.0 range. Tampa Bay's offense has been inept against pretty much everyone; now they head to Chicago where the Bears will feed off their fans and end up eating the Bucs alive.

SEATTLE (-10.0) over San Francisco

Seattle just seems to play so much better at home. Total scores on the road: 131-173. Total scores at home: 150-117. The 49ers are headed in the wrong direction fast, and I don't see that slowing down in Seattle.

BALTIMORE (-10.5) over Cleveland

I guess I'm especially big on home favorites this week. The Ravens can just about lock up their division with a win, so expect them to be relentless in devouring the Browns offense and cruise to an easy victory.

Contractually-Obligated Bets

Bill: (1-2 last week, 24-17-1 overall)

If Ian actually beats me this season -- and it's possible at this rate -- I may swear off gambling forever.

NEW ENGLAND (-11) over Houston

I'll follow Ian's lead. David Carr on the road? Bill Belichick is going to have to wash his hoodie to get all the saliva off. Call me crazy, but I don't think Ron Dayne will be able to run as effectively this week.

NEW YORK GIANTS (-6) over Philadelphia

In much the same vein. Jeff Garcia (who I like more than pretty much anyone else at FO but can still understand the criticism of) on the road! It's a simplistic betting style, sure, but there's obviously more to it than that. In fact, the more I think about it, the more similarities these teams have -- speedy running back who loves catching balls out of the backfield, lanky, perpetually underachieving #1 wide receiver, injured star defensive end... I think the home field here will tip the scale in the Giants' favor and a late touchdown will give them the spread. And by think, I really mean hope.

ATLANTA (+3) over Dallas

Now, Tony Romo on the road? Am I crossing a line here? Atlanta's pass defense is acceptable if not incredible, and if Dallas has a weakness, it's their pass protection (23rd in the league according to Adjusted Sack Rate). In addition, Michael Vick is fast enough to freeze Dallas' outside linebackers on blitzes, which means he'll either burn them or create holes to pass into (theoretically, of course). I like Falcons here and -- gasp -- I'm bringing it back. She is 3-2 after the Giants game but she'll be 4-2 after the Falcons beat the Cowboys.


127 comments, Last at 21 Dec 2006, 1:43am

#1 by JasonK (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:19pm

Brandon Jacobs actually did fumble-- at the Carolina 1 yd. line, no less. (Shockey fell on it, though, after a good play by Eli to prevent a Panther recovery.)

Points: 0

#2 by Andrew (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:23pm

I just want to say thank you to FO for putting out the Kubiak system. Using it, plus my common sense, my first ever fantasy football team produced the second most points in the league (even with me having Addai on the bench when he scored 4 TD's :-( and picking up Charlie Frye instead of Vince Young after McNabb went down) and has propelled me into the playoffs.

Points: 0

#3 by Pat (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:31pm

I'd just like to point out that Bill's Bets put the Giants in the NFC East division lead.

Coincidence? I think not.

Points: 0

#4 by Jody (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:31pm

I don't exactly where to post this, or to find the info to answer my question. Is there anywhere in FO that shows a team's tendencies toward offensive fumbles (obviously not recovery, since that is chance), throwing interceptions and getting sacked? If so, where? Yes this is a fantasy football question. those, and yards allowed, are the only scoring categories for DEF, and I am in the playoffs having to choose between the inconsistently mediocre Carolina and the consistently mediocre Atlanta defenses.

Points: 0

#5 by Larry (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:35pm

Fantasy Lineup question: Scoring only league which QB Vick or Garcia? Which WR Mushin Muhammed or DJ Hackett?

Points: 0

#6 by Jon (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:39pm

I've got five players for a RB spot and a WR/RB spot (PPR League):

R Brown/S Morris (@ Buf)
J Addai (Cin)
M Barber (@ Atl)
J Griffith (Dal)
G Jennings (Det)

Who do I start for these two spots?

Points: 0

#7 by Ian Dembsky (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:41pm

Carolina vs Pittsburgh, or Atlanta vs Dallas, huh? Not a pretty set of choices. Do you get NFL Network? If so, if for no other reason, I'd use Atlanta because at least you'll get to root for them while watching the game. I can't give you a compelling reason to go either way; just go with your gut.

Points: 0

#8 by Ian Dembsky (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:45pm

5: Vick (hard to predict how Garcia will do on the road @Giants stadium, and with Dunn & Norwood probably out, most touchdowns will probably come through the air) and Muhammad (Chicago vs Tampa = plenty of points. Too many scoring options in Seattle.)

6: Sammy Morris and Joseph Addai, though make sure Addai is playing (he seems likely to). Seems like a high-scoring game on Monday night; should be plenty of TDs to go around. None of the other options are all that reliable. If Addai is out, I'd probably go Jennings at home vs Detroit.

Points: 0

#9 by Travis (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:53pm

Is there anywhere in FO that shows a team’s tendencies toward offensive fumbles (obviously not recovery, since that is chance), throwing interceptions and getting sacked? If so, where?

I'm not sure if they're on FO anywhere in one place (you could go through the individual position data and add them up for each team, I guess), but has team fumble stats here, and sack and interception stats here.

Points: 0

#10 by Ian Dembsky (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:53pm

How about I solicit your guys' opinions. Thanks to a plethora of running back injuries, I must choose 3 of the following RBs for a playoff matchup. 1 pt per 10 yds rsh/rec; 6 per TD.
S. Morris @BUF (he's pretty much a lock), C. Houston @MIN, Julius Jones @ATL, J. Fargas vs STL, C. Williams @ CHI, J. Griffith vs DAL

It ain't pretty.

Points: 0

#11 by ABW (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:53pm

Alright, I managed to squeak into the playoffs. I need to start:

2 of Rudi Johnson, Brian Westbrook, or Frank Gore
Either Chris Cooley or Kellen Winslow
One of Bernard Berrian, Patrick Crayton or Marty Booker

Any advice? Currently I'm going with Johnson against Indy, who I think is a must-start, Westbrook, Cooley and Berrian.

Points: 0

#12 by Brian (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 6:57pm

Brown is still hurt, and it looks like T. Jones will be questionable this week. That leaves me 3 RBs who have had 2 good weeks in a row all going against slightly-above-average run Ds. So who do I use?

Edge v. Denver
T. Bell @ Arizona
Betts @ N'awlins

Points: 0

#13 by Ian Dembsky (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:03pm

11: I couldn't agree with your choices more. You can't possibly bench Rudi against the Colts after what happened to them last week, and Westbrook over Gore is an easy choice. Anyone on Cleveland is a risky play @ Baltimore, and Berrian should have a nice game at home against Tampa.

12: Betts (he's been on a tear, and Washington will want to run a lot to keep Brees off the field) and Tatum Bell (much higher big play potential than Edge).

Points: 0

#14 by Fourth (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:09pm

Jones and Griffith. Houston has a bad matchup, Williams has the worst matchup imaginable, and could you really imagine needing an Oakland offensive player to come through with your playoff game on the line? Process of elimination.

Points: 0

#15 by Brian (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:14pm

Thanks Ian. Now I'll answer your question

Gotta use Morris and Jones. Morris seems to be putting up the same numbers Brown did, which are decent. Under no circumstances should you use anyone who isn't a top-tier back going against Minnesota, and I'd argue the same for Chicago. Fargas is tough because Oakland will a) be playing from behind and b) probably never get close enough to the end zone to be a TD threat (yes, I know they're playing against St. Louis). And last, I've been playing FF for about 6 years now, I watch ESPN every night, and I had to look up who "J. Griffith" is (Also, it's likely that either Dunn or Norwood will be back next week). That leaves Jones by default, especially since Barber III only took 2 of his carries last week.

Points: 0

#16 by emcee fleshy (… (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:15pm

5: Vick. - - Dunn and Norwood are hurt, so he doesn't have to share.

Also, ATL is home in a dome, Philly is on the road in the cold.

Points: 0

#17 by Brian (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:15pm

Oops, didn't see that you choose 3 of them. I guess I'd have to go with Fargas, just because playing STL means he has a shot of breaking a big run or two.

Points: 0

#18 by bryan (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:23pm

10: Morris / Jones. I actually expect the Dallas (11 ranked DVOA) to keep a hobbled ATL running game under control and force Vick to throw. This will have the same effect as if ATL decided to run a bunch of pooch kicks on 2nd nd 3rd down, giving the Dallas offense a lot of time with the ball. And then they will run a lot to rest their D, which is tired from running back interceptions or blocking on INT returns.

11: Rudi's a no-brainer - I'm going against him this week and I'm terrified. I think Gore also. He's going against a DVOA ranked weak Seattle D and you get the all-important psychological advantage of first points. :)

12: Sit Edge. I don't think I need to elaborate. I'm a Denver homer, too, though, so take it with a grain of salt.

I need assistance in a huge playoff game... I have Addai in to start alongside Willie Parker and G Jennings in alongside R. Williams. I also have Sammy Morris available and have a shot at Tatum Bell, b/c the guy I am playing inexplicably dropped him last week to make room for the Cinci D (against Oakland, but still...)

Anyway, should I keep Addai in there, keeping in mind that I can't wait past Sunday AM to decide to switch them out. Also, would D. Henderson be a better start than Greg Jennings? What about DJ Hackett?


Points: 0

#19 by bryan (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:25pm

I also missed start 3 and agree with the tastefully named, if not spelled, Brian.

Points: 0

#20 by Sean (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:39pm

#5 - Garcia. Vick could rush for 150, it doesn't matter, cos his receivers resemble a collection of amputees

Points: 0

#21 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 7:53pm

So thanks to FO, PFP2006, and Scramble for the Ball, I made the playoffs in my first ever fantasy football season. I even won my division and got a first round bye.

Sadly, Darrell Jackson is out this week. And my RBs are either injured, bad, or up against good rush defenses. And my opponent has LDT. And Wayne, Walker and Glenn.

Here's my team. I'm willing to listen to any and all suggestions:

1 QB, 1 RB, 1 WR/TE, 3 Flex (max 3 RB), 1K, 1 DEF.

QB - Hasselbeck, Rivers
RB - C. Houston, L. Washington (both vs. MIN), J. Norwood (questionable status), McAllister
WR - D. Jackson (reportedly out), A. Johnson, A. Bryant, V. Jackson
K - N. Kaeding, J. Brown
Def - Seattle

Little help?

Points: 0

#22 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:00pm

#4 - I'd like to see that too. I know they rate defenses on how likely they are to cause fumbles/interceptions, and I know they rate individual performances on that, but I know of nothing that says how likely a team is to turn the ball over.

Points: 0

#23 by Leo (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:00pm

Need help picking a WR. I have Andre Johnson, but he has SUCKED lately. Should I start any of the following instead of him? DJ Hackett, Moose Muhammad, Randy Moss, Isaac Bruce? None of them are very consistent for sure.

Also, Sammy Morris vs. Buff or Chester Taylor (given his questionable injury status) vs. NYJ?

Points: 0

#24 by RecoveringPackerFan (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:21pm

Do I get a prize for all of my loser league WRs drawing the penalty?

Points: 0

#25 by J.R. (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:23pm

Two fantasy questions, quarterback and running back:

QB- Rivers (vKC), Garcia (@NYG), Bulger (@Oak)
RB- Jones-Drew (@Ten), A. Green (vDet)

Points: 0

#26 by Geoff (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:24pm

re 23: Benching AJ for any of those guys would be grossly overreacting to two bad fantasy weeks(one of which came against an excellent pass D and the other of which was actually a 7-68 day).

I have a more long term question. In a dynasty league I'm in one owner is looking to unload Holt for a #2 RB or a top DE and a #3 RB. Do people think Holt's down year yardage/DVOA wise is the start of major decline or that he'll bounce back next year. What's an example of a RB(or two) you think would be a fair deal for Holt? Just looking for people's impressions of his long-term value.

Points: 0

#27 by Mnatr (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:32pm

Rule #1:

Ian is absolutely wrong. As long as the goal of your fantasy league is to win the championship (i.e. no cash, honor bestowed on those that finish 2nd and lower and it's not a keeper/continuous league) then teams eliminated from playoff contention are not playing the same game as teams in playoff contention. There is no payoff for making a trade to improve a non-playoff team. Your team may be better, but that means squat because you can't win the only thing that matters.

The reason you don't hear about this in real pro sports is because teams are playing for this year and next year, and the years after that. Their roster will not be wiped clean at the end of the year. Yours will.

Of course, this usually doesn't matter, because a most single-season leagues have a transaction deadline.

Points: 0

#28 by Mnatr (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:35pm

I should mention that fair is different from what's legal according to league rules. If your league doesn't have a rule, then you can do it.

This is why I encourage owners to talk about rules and dilemmas like this before the season.

Points: 0

#29 by ABW (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:46pm

Thanks Ian. FWIW, I think you should go with Sammy Morris and Julius Jones, but with my track record of picking who should start you should probably nail those guys to your bench now.

Points: 0

#30 by doktarr (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 8:46pm

Alright, you guys saved me last week with the Marty Booker pickup. Semifinals time. I have great matchups championship week, so I just gotta squeeze through one more iffy week.

Start three of:

Antonio Bryant @ SEA
Deion Branch vs. SF
Devery Henderson vs. WAS
Marty Booker @ Buffalo
(below are not on my team but can be picked up)
Keyshawn Johnson vs. PIT
Drew Carter vs. PIT
Eddie Kennison @ SD

Henderson is a no-brainer against my 'skins as long as either Horn or Colston is out (Horn listed as questionable, Colston at probable). I'm currently leaning toward benching Branch.

Matters are further complicated by the SF/SEA game being on Thursday. If Chester Taylor is a late scratch, then I'll have wanted to start four guys. If I bench Bryant or Branch, and Taylor is inactive, I'll have to grab one of the waiver wire guys.

Points: 0

#31 by Becephalus (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 9:04pm

The real solution to #2 is that yahoo espn etc. just need to grow the tiniest hint of backbone and change the damn classification. I cannot see anyone having a legitimate grounds for complaint, as clearly the only reason anyone would pick him up the first few weeks was as an exploit. no one was sold on him as a reciever for a bit.

Points: 0

#32 by asg (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 9:14pm

OK, some good problems to have...

1. Terry Glenn @Atl or Javon Walker @Ari?

2. Pick one: Dillon vHou, Barber III @Atl, Gore @Sea.

I am starting Romo at QB.

Points: 0

#33 by adwred (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 9:17pm

Hey all - seems like a lot of questions about mediocre WRs, so let me throw one by you. Standard scoring, I have Chad Johnson in one slot, and two slots to fill. Who should I play?:

Moose Muhammad, vs TB
Isaac Bruce, at OAK
Greg Jennings, vs DET
Drew Bennett, vs JAX

Thanks for your help I am going to need it.

Points: 0

#34 by asg (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 9:22pm

33: I'd go with Muhammad. The Tampa defense just ain't what it used to be. Jennings is the 2nd choice since Detroit has the worst defense in the league but Favre's accuracy also ain't what it used to be.

Incidentally, am I the only one who thinks Jason Beattie's comics aren't funny? At all?

Points: 0

#35 by Becephalus (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 9:29pm

Here is a fun one at WR.

H. Ward (Hurt possibly not playing)
L. Coles Starting (MIN pass def)
E. Kennison so inconsistent
D. Bennett ditto
D Henderson Thinking of running with him depite so much ocmpetition in NO
M Booker WW
DJ Hackett WW

Points: 0

#36 by Scott de B. (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 10:42pm

Ian is absolutely wrong. As long as the goal of your fantasy league is to win the championship (i.e. no cash, honor bestowed on those that finish 2nd and lower and it’s not a keeper/continuous league) then teams eliminated from playoff contention are not playing the same game as teams in playoff contention. There is no payoff for making a trade to improve a non-playoff team. Your team may be better, but that means squat because you can’t win the only thing that matters.

So do I have grounds for complaint if I am playing the last place team and he makes roster/waiver wire decisions that improve his chances of scoring points? If he is allowed/expected to put up the best fight possible, why not trade to do the same thing?

Points: 0

#37 by Justin Zeth (not verified) // Dec 13, 2006 - 10:59pm

Bill, it's nice to see you're trying to thwart the Catholic Match Girl Curse before it gets too firmly entrenched.

Really, the trends this year are making me think that getting first pick of games is a significant advantage, whether you guys' experience agrees with the notion or not.

Points: 0

#38 by VarlosZ (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:02am

This is neither here nor there, but Ian closed three separate paragraphs this week with variations on the phrase "more power to you."

I'm guessing this wasn't intentional.

Points: 0

#39 by Josh (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:23am

Appreciate any advice with this decision:
Need to start three of the following (I'm leaning towards the first three listed):
Cotchery @ MIN
Muhammad v. TB
Colston v. WAS
Henderson v. WAS
C. Houston @ MIN
D. Foster v. PIT
C Henry @ IND
Kennisson @ SD

Also decising for D between Jax @ TEN and NE v. HOU

Thanks for any input!

Points: 0

#40 by compucrazy (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:26am

Fantasy football playoff time. I have the Eagles D, and the Falcons D availible on my team. Should I play the falcons facing Dallas, or the Eagles at Giants? Or is neither matchup good and look to the waiver wire for, say the Packers D vs. Detroit or the Bills d vs. Miami. Any suggestions?

Points: 0

#41 by NF (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:10am

Are Buffalo (vs. Miami) and Pittsburgh (vs. ?) good plays as fantasy defenses?

Also, should I start Greg Jennings vs. the horrible DET #2 WR def and sit Eddie Kennison against Quentin Jammer? Last time I sat Kennison he caught a TD and over 100 yards. Also, Philip Rivers against Kansas City or Matt Hasselbeck vs. SF?

Points: 0

#42 by Randy S. (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:43am

After the McNabb injury, I ended up with three garbage QBs on my team. One of them needs to start in the playoffs this week.

Aaron Brooks vs STL
JP Losman vs MIA
Jason Campbell vs NO

I'm scared of the Dolphins defense after last week, but my other two choices aren't exactly pretty. Help?

Points: 0

#43 by Kyle Manning (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:09am

Alright, I'm perfectly set at WR, RB, TE, K, and my 5 IDP spots. I've completely dominated in total points thanks to this, but my QB spot is rather iffy. I drafted Culpepper and that blew up in my face and I've been searching for a QB since. Since the playoffs start this week I just dumped all my normal back-ups and picked up every QB I could fit onto my bench. So I need to choose from these guys. Completion % matters, but that's the only major difference from normal scoring. Anyway, here's the QBs:

Jay Cutler @ Arizona
Michael Vick vs. Dallas
Jon Kitna @ Green Bay
Vince Young vs. Jacksonville
Brett Favre vs. Detroit
Philip Rivers vs. Kansas City
Rex Grossman vs. Tampa Bay

I have LT so I'm a bit hesitant to start Rivers, but he's looking like the best bet at this point.

Points: 0

#44 by IzzionSona (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:50am

Kyle: The LT owner in my league has Rivers and Gates, and has been playing all three since week six, and averaging about 10 points more than anyone else in the league since that point (6 pt all TD, 25/10 yardage league)... So I don't think the "risk" of overinvesting in the SD offense is that big. I'd go with either Rivers or Favre if you feel the need to hedge.

Randy: My gut feeling would be to go with a "least likely to post a negative" option of Campbell, but I don't know how strongly I'd assert that opinion.

My question: trying to get back to my league's championship, and my opponent's lineup is basically the NO offense (Brees, Bush, Henderson) and filler... so, in a 2 RB, 3 WR, RB/WR league, which six to start?

RB: Gore, L. Johnson, M. Jones-Drew, T. Bell
WR: TJ Who's Your Daddy, K. Johnson, R. Wayne, G. Jennings

Also, is Hasselbeck really back for good, or should I play roulette with Roethlisberger versus Carolina? I'm feeling that I may need to play boom-or-bust to keep up with the Saints' offense.

Points: 0

#45 by Terry (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 4:02am

32: Glenn, Gore.
39: I think you have it right. I have a feeling Henderson might do something though.
43: I'd go Rivers/Favre, then Grossman.


Rushing Yards (20 yards per point)
Rushing Touchdowns (6)
Reception Yards (25 yards per point)
Reception Touchdowns (6)

Lee Evans v. MIA, Stallworth @ NYG, Maroney v. HOU, M. Bell @ ARI, Pinner v. NYJ, Sammy Morris @ Buf.

Pick 2 of the above-- or if you can, rank 3 or 4 just in case Thomas Jones (one of my starters) or Maroney (if you pick him) can't go.

Points: 0

#46 by David C (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 4:23am

35 - I'll assume you need three: Ward, Coles, Booker (Marty's on fire right now)

39 - Most "analysts" would probably disagree, but Henry is scoring touchdowns with such ease, I'd throw him in instead of Cotchery.

40 & 41 - Buffalo because Miami's offense sucks

41 - Hasselbeck over Rivers; Jennings has been worthless for too many weeks, Henderson's overrated right now, but start him after you've taken a good look at free agency.

42 - Go with Campbell, Brooks is too horrible to play, and Miami's defense is too good for Losman

43 - I'd go with the hot pick, Vince Young

My question, pick three:
Hines Ward
Bernard Berrian
Donald Driver
Chris Henry
Braylon Edwards

Points: 0

#47 by Jimmy Two Times (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 4:42am

In the hopes that people will contribute to answering my question, I have decided to put in my 2 cents on of these fantasy quandaries. Contributing to my decision is the fact that I really don't have anything else to do and I like bossing people around.

#5 (Larry) - I assume that by scoring-only you mean TD-only. I'd go Garcia. I think the Cowboys defense, which is pretty good against the run, is going to be fired up for the Falcons game after the Sunday night debacle. I'd also start Muhsin, as I think that Good Rex is going to be with us for at least another week. I don't love Muhsin, since I think the Bears are going to be doing a lot of running in the second half, but Hackett might be the 4th receiving option in Seattle, so Muhsin's the better bet.

#6 (Jon) - I agree with Ian that you should start Addai and S. Morris, though I think that if Addai is out you should start Barber.

#10 (Ian) - Ouch. Sammy Morris and Julius Jones is what I'd go with, but honestly it's razor-thin between Jones, Cadillac and Fargas. (I expect Warrick Dunn to play some against ATL, so Griffith should be out.) I'd go Jones because I think he's the only one who will still be getting carries in the second-half; Oakland and Tampa may be too far behind to do anything but chuck it.

#11 (ABW) - Nice RB options-- hard to go too far wrong. Assuming you're not in a PPR league, I'd start Gore and Rudi. Too much of Westbrook's value is tied up in his receiving yardage, and the Giants actually defend RB passes pretty well. I'd definitely go Cooley at TE. WR is a tossup between Booker and Berrian; I think I'd go Booker, because the Bears shouldn't have to pass the ball that much next week.

#12 (Brian) - Tatum Bell and Betts. Denver is going to clamp down on Edgerrin after being embarrassed by LT last week. Those guys need a win badly.

#18 (bryan) - Go get Tatum Bell. If you can't, then start Sammy Morris. Addai is not a great option this week. Also, start Devery. The Washington pass D is just so, so bad.

#21 (Xian) If I were setting your starting lineup, I'd go:
QB- Hasselbeck
RB- McAllister
WR- Andre Johnson
Flex- Bryant, Houston, Washington
PK- Josh Brown
Def- Seattle

But there must be some better options on your wire than Leon Washington. Can't you get Aveion Cason or DJ Hackett?

23 (Leo) - Don't overthink this. Start Johnson and Morris and don't look back. Frankly, I hate Johnson's matchup this week, but your backup options aren't good enough to justify sitting a stud like Andre.

This is getting long. More responses in the post to follow.

Points: 0

#48 by Jimmy Two Times (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:05am

#25 (J.R.) - I'd go with Garcia. Rivers and Bulger won't get passing TD's. I'd also go with Ahman Green against a very, very suspect Detroit D.

#30 (Doktarr) - Start Branch, Booker and Kennison. All good matchups.

#32 (asg) - Glenn and Gore for sure.

#33 (adwred) - Not great options. I think Jennings is the best start against Detroit, who can't cover anyone unless they put Dre Bly on him. I'd also go with Muhsin.

#35 (Becephalus) - I'd go Coles, since Min isn't that awesome against #1s. If you need another guy, I'd probably start Kennison-- KC is going to have to play catch-up against SD. I don't trust Hines to play the whole game against Carolina yet, and their pass D is pretty terrific anyway.

#39 (Josh) - I think you're right on. Cotchery, Colston and Muhsin. Defense is tough without knowing your scoring system, but in most formats I'd lean Pats.

#40 (compucrazy) - Go get the Bills. Miami's offense is teh sucks.

#41 (NF) - Start Buffalo, Kennison (Chargers Pass D isn't that great) and Hasselbeck.

#42 (Randy S.) - I can't believe I'm saying this, but start Brooks. If you can't bring yourself to do it, then Losman is your next-less-bad option.

#43 (Kyle Manning) - Start Kitna. I agree with Martz that the picks are more fluky than the result of bad play.

#44 (Terry) - Morris, Evans, Stallworth-- in that order.

#45 (David C) - Your question is a lot like mine. I'll be interested in your thoughts. I'd go with Driver, Ward and Berrian.

Points: 0

#49 by Jimmy Two Times (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:14am

So, finally, my question.

I have to start 2 of:

H. Ward (@ CAR)
D. Driver (vs. DET)
E. Kennison (@ SD)
R. Caldwell (vs. HOU)

All of these guys has warts. Here's my initial take:

Ward is still dinged and may not play the whole game. In addition, the Panthers do a great job against #1s. On the other hand, he is Hines Ward.

Driver is apparently also dinged, though I think he'll be fine. Bigger problem is that Dre Bly just owns him--Driver only has 100 total yards in their last 3 matchups. The Lions don't do much of anything well, but they do a great job of defending #1 wideouts.

Kennison has been so inconsistent, but he's got a good matchup. SD has been getting torched by #1s, and the Chiefs will likely be playing catch-up for much of the game.

Caldwell is the same as Kennison-- inconsistent, but with a good matchup. Problem with him is that Brady may just decide not to pass it to him and go with Daniel Graham or whatever. Also, the Pats probably won't pass that much late in the game against a Texans team they should dominate. Then again, they'll probably build their dominating lead through the air.

So, thoughts?

Points: 0

#50 by James, London (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 6:26am

Re #24,

If there's a prize for that, we're sharing.

Points: 0

#51 by Dagagad (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:41am

should i pick up the back up cincy this week? I already have Johnson but I have a third spot to fill.

Points: 0

#52 by Dagagad (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:41am

re#50 backup up cincy rb i mean

Points: 0

#53 by White Rose Duelist (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:49am

Tough playoff matchups this week. Could anyone help me get the egde (not James, my opponent is stuck with him) I need?

RB2: Addai vs. CIN or McAllister vs. WAS?

For two spots (WR and WR/TE flex): Winslow vs. BAL, Cooley @ NO, Evans, Furrey @ GB?

Points: 0

#54 by Jody (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:53am

Travis- thanks. The info was pretty eye popping. Pit has 20 INTS, 25 FUM (12 lost) and has given up 40 sacks. DAL has 17 INTS, 10 FUM (only 4 lost!) and 27 sacks. That shows me that PIT is much more turnover prone than is DAL and therefore the Panthers are more likely to benefit than the Falcons. Thanks again.
#24- I would start Driver, hoping he'll get a TD and 60-80 yds. I would wait until as late as possible regarding Ward. If you can change your lineup until that game, and he is marked to play, then I'd start him Sun morning (or whenever PIT is playing). Kennison is the clear #2 option against a very tough SD DEF. Brady has a tendency to spread the wealth, and if Caldwell has the misfortune of being guarded by Dunta Robinson (the Texans only good DB) he will be in for a rough day. I'd go Kennison, but yuck.

Points: 0

#55 by Jody (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:54am

correction. the fantasy 2 cents was for #48.

Points: 0

#56 by White Rose Duelist (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:56am

Evans vs. MIA, that is.

Points: 0

#57 by mactbone (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 10:00am

LDT has 100 more points than the second guy (LJ) in my league. LJ has about 2/3 the point total of LDT. That's insane. I don't know how other leagues are set up but that seems ridiculous.

Does anyone have a clue what's going on with Dunn and Norwood? How about Mike Bell? I know some Denver fan knows why he isn't getting much action.

Points: 0

#58 by PackMan (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 10:21am

I have a fantasy football ethics question. I have a league with some of the guys I work with, and we were a little short on people, so there are a few outside people as well, one of which is the brother of one of the guys I work with. The guy obviously just signed up because his brother asked him and didn't really care all year. And since he was in last place, he decided to put all of his players on the bench for the last few weeks. I noticed this during the last week of the season when he was playing the guy who was in 7th place (top 6 teams in the playoffs). Of course the guy in 7th won and I was in 6th and lost, putting him in the playoffs. I emailed the comissioner and basically said that he should go back and put in the last real roster that the guy had for the last few weeks. Some of the ohter guys in the league (including the brother that I work with) thought that was unfair. I think ultimately the comissioner should have locked the guy out after the first week, but I guess no one noticed until it knocked me out of the playoffs. Do you guys think it is okay to change past rosters if it is clear someone was being unsportsmanlike?

Points: 0

#59 by asg (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 10:36am

Thanks to all who answered my questions in #32. So, here's a curve ball. I start 1 of Rivers and Romo. I am also starting Glenn at WR, Tomlinson at RB, and Gates at TE. Which QB should I start? Right now I am leaning towards Romo due to KC's defense against WRs and Atlanta's lack of same. San Diego could put up 35 and Rivers not throw a touchdown.

Points: 0

#60 by mawbrew (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:01am

Playoff time, time to get serious.

QB - Romo (@ Falcons) or Hasselbeck (v. SF)
RB - T. Jones (v. TB), C. Taylor (v. NYJ), or C Bednson (v. TB) pick one
WR - D. Branch (v. SF) or G. Jennings (v. Lions)

I'm leaning toward Romo, Jones (assuming the injury risk doesn't becoming clearer), and Branch, but would be interested in other thinking.

Points: 0

#61 by asg (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:09am

#60: You have to start Hasselbeck. At home against SF? No contest. I'd also go for Jones at RB. Branch is probably the safer bet but honestly your WR thing is a tossup.

Points: 0

#62 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:32am

I'm not so sure about Hass. He's not totally great anyway, he'll be playing on 4 days rest, and the weather in Seattle is massively windy and rainy. It's not going to be a fun day for QBs.

Points: 0

#63 by adwred (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:35am

Pack Man -

I think in the scenario you describe, it could only have been remedied earlier in the season. Once it happens more than a couple of weeks, the interconnectedness of a few teams basically getting byes would effect a whole tail end of the season - had you brought this up much earlier than the week it directly affected you.

In my experience, leagues like you are describing do best with less fiddling than more - its obviously not a super involved crew of owners, and changing it now, with the playoffs underway/about to be would leave a very sour taste in many folks' mouths, hurting interest next year.

Points: 0

#64 by Eric (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:38am

Pick 4:

Reche Caldwell vs. HOU
Greg Jennings vs. DET
Donte Stallworth vs. NYG
Chris Henry vs. IND
Tony Scheffler vs. AZ
Marquis Colston vs. WAS


Marion Barber vs. ATL
Marice Jones-Drew vs. TEN

aside from last week, Barber has been smoking.


Points: 0

#65 by PackMan (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:48am

That is basically what we decided. I was pissed at first, but after talking to everyone we decided that it would have been okay after the first week he did it, but after that it was basically too late.
Another option that we discussed was going back and making his roster blank for the entire season, giving everyone a bye the week that they played him. But the only ohter teams he beat were out of contention, so we decided to just leave it be.
But I would have actually won my playoff game last week if I had made it.

Points: 0

#66 by Zonker (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:07pm

Ok, fantasy playoffs and I've got a couple of tough decisions. Any opinions would be appreciated.

QB: Tony Romo @ ATL or Vince Young vs JAX
RB: Sammy Morris @ BUF or Ladell Betts @ NO
TE: Vernon Davis @ SEA or Owen Daniels @ NE.


64 - I'd go for Colston, Stallworth, Jennings and Caldwell in that order, but obivously that depends on Colston being fit. Barber is sure to rebound against the Falcons, their run defense is poo.

Points: 0

#67 by Adam B. (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:12pm

64: MoJo, and all but Scheffler and Henry.
60: Romo, b/c Hass may not have to throw; Taylor (if healthy) else Jones; Branch.

Question: I'm playing the team with LDT, Ocho Cinco and the Bears D this week in my keeper league semis, so none of this may matter, but with Ronnie Brown and DJax out, I need to pick one RB/WR and one WR from among:
THenry v JAX
SMorris @ BUF
SMoss @ NO
GJennings v DET

Given that I likely need a miracle, do I go with Morris & Moss?

Points: 0

#68 by zlionsfan (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:33pm

PackMan, I would say absolutely not. If you notice that an owner has become (or has always been) an absentee owner and that it is affecting his ability to field a competitive team, in my opinion, the time to bring it up is prior to a game, not after a game, and certainly not at the end of the regular season.

Yes, his automatic loss to the 7th-place team helped to bump you out of the playoffs (although you could have made it by winning your last game, right?), but he lost to another team the week before. What do you do with that game? Or the one the week before that? Do you replay every game that he lost after he switched his lineup?

Another problem with after-the-fact decisions is that you can't even pick a reasonable starting lineup for him because you know how many points each player got. What if his best players overall wouldn't have given him a win, but starting a couple of bench players would have?

I think this goes back to what Mnatr said: the best way to handle this is to have rules in place before the season begins, and to intercede in a situation like that only as the rules permit. In the absence of any rules, I think you were just the victim of bad luck.

Points: 0

#69 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:36pm

#49, thanks for answering...unfortunately it's a little late for me to pick up DJ Hackett now, as I have to have my roster set by tonight (stupid Thursday games), and the claims are processed once per day. I attempted to claim either Justin Griffith or Ron Dayne (I know, I'm as shocked as you are), but apparently there's a max # of RBs per roster that I was unaware of.

In answer to your question, normally I'd say Driver, but you're right about Dre Bly. Kennison seems like the best bet to me. Good luck!

Points: 0

#70 by Wanker79 (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:49pm

Ok, I've got 2 tough choices; one at RB in one league, and one at WR in another league. Current starters are listed first.

Pick 2 RBs:
Rudi @ IND (duh)
Gore @ SEA

Pick 2 WRs:
Fitz v. DEN
Reggie Brown @ NYG
Colston v. WAS
Henderson v. WAS
Booker @ BUF

Points: 0

#71 by mawbrew (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 12:57pm

Re: 66

Romo and Betts seem like no-brainers. TE's (except for the top five of so) are always a coinflip. I'd go with Daniels just because he's played all year.

Re: 67

I'm not sure your situation is so desperate. LDT is a point producing machine, but with the TD record already in hand I'm wondering (hoping?) they may reduce his load the rest of the way. Another Johnson (Rudi) may steal some of CJs points. And the Bears D, well I can't offer much hope there - they figure to get their fair share and then some. That said, I also think Morris and Moss are the right choices.

Points: 0

#72 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:19pm

Minnesota defense at the Jets or Pittsburgh at a possibly Weinke-led Panthers?

Points: 0

#73 by Schrodinger_cat (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:21pm

QB and D/ST

Pick one of Bulger (vs OAK) or Leinart (vs DEN).
pick one of MIN (vs NYJ) or SEA (vs SF)

I'm leaning towards Bulger at QB, but he's been hit or miss, and I have no opinion about the DST at this point...can anyone give me some insight?

Points: 0

#74 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:23pm

Any more thoughts on the Romo v. Hasselbeck? It is rainy, windy and 40 degrees in Seattle tonight, but Romo has had two poor fantasy outings in a row. Has the league caught up with him? How is he going to do in Atlanta? Any ideas?

Points: 0

#75 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:24pm

#70 - Go with MJD...both Seattle & Tenessee's defenses are not super awesome against the run, but it seems likely that Seattle will be able to get ahead quickly now that Hasselbeck is mostly healthy, potentially negating Gore's usage.

Colston & Henderson vs. Washington might be good, but that's probably putting too many eggs in one basket. Maybe Fitz & Colston.

Points: 0

#76 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:25pm

Need 3 WRs:
Andre Johnson
Lee Evans
Donte Stallworth

Also 3 rb:
Shaun Alexander
Jamal Lewis
Travis Henry
Deshaun Foster

Any insights? Thanks.

Points: 0

#77 by Rocco (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:28pm

How do people here feel about starting the Rams D against Oakland? I did this a few weeks ago with Houston's D against the Raiders and it worked out- is it worth it to try out a crummy D against the worst offense ever again? I have on my bench Philly's D.

Points: 0

#78 by Eli (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:37pm

Fantasy playoffs, wouldn't have gotten this far without y'all, so help would be much appreciated:
Need 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, and 1 flex
QB: Hasselbeck (in 50mph winds) or Leinart (vs. DEN)
RB: Justin Fargas (vs. StL), Sammy Morris (vs. Buf), Frank Gore (vs. Sea)
WR: Marvin Harrison (vs. Cincy), Donald Driver (vs. Det), Larry Fitzgerald (vs. Den), Mushin Muhammed (vs. TB)

Points: 0

#79 by Schrodinger_cat (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:45pm

I'd start the Rams--brooks is usually good for a fumble or two and some sacks...Philly looked tired a couple of weeks ago.

Points: 0

#80 by Randy S. (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 1:55pm

#74 - I'm not sure about Seattle, but the weather here in nearby Vancouver is pretty terrible. We've been having these 'gale force' winds that are knocking power out, and it is supposedly continuing into tonight. If that gets anywhere near Seattle, then it could really affect both passing games. Plus the ball will be slippery from rain, so it might be a good night to bench Romo or even Hasselbeck.

Points: 0

#81 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:04pm

Good question about Hasselbeck + wind. Currently the forecast just says 20-30mph wind for Seattle, and it should be somewhat protected inside the stadium.

So it might not be as bad as all that.

Points: 0

#82 by Adam B. (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:24pm


73: Bulger, MIN.

77: Sure.

78: Leinart, because Arizona has to throw, and Hasselback doesn't (and lacks DJax); Morris, Gore, Harrison, Driver, Fitz.

Anyone else on #67?

Points: 0

#83 by T.J. (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:29pm

I'd like some advice. My league has basic scoring (1 pt for every 10 yds rush/rec, 1 pt for 25 yds pass, 6 for TD's) and has 2 RB slots, 2 WR slots and 1 RB/WR slot. I have LT, Addai, Julius Jones, Chester Taylor, Javon Walker, Larry Fitzgerald, Santana Moss, and Hines Ward.

I also have to choose between McNair and Kitna at QB.


Points: 0

#84 by Schrodinger_cat (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:38pm

#67: I agree with Morris and Moss.

Points: 0

#85 by Daniel (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 2:51pm

Which D do I start? NE at home vs. Houston, or Seattle at home vs. SF?

Points: 0

#86 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:04pm

#85: NE, NE, NE. This shouldn't be anything close to a contest.

#81 - I've been to Qwest field, and the winds get right in there, easy. There's very little protection. It's going to be a weird game. If you've got an alternative to Hass, I think I'd go with that, especially given that it's a Thursday and that DJax is out. Engram playing is nice, but not nice enough.

Points: 0

#87 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:21pm

Arrgh! Thursday night games. Maybe Romo is the way to go against Atlanta.

Points: 0

#88 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:38pm

#86 - I've just moved to Seattle recently, haven't been to a game yet, so thanks for the info. Hopefully I'll get to go at some point.

If only my other QB wasn't Phillip Rivers...he's good, but he doesn't really do that much passing, what with LDT on the team. Alternatively, if only my FF opponent didn't have LDT on his team, maybe I wouldn't be worried about it as much. Heh.

Points: 0

#89 by JC (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 3:58pm

I'd be wary of everyone but the running backs in the SF v. SEA game. Seattle weather has been horrible lately, and tonight it's supposed to get worse. The forecasts vary, but everyone agrees that there will lots rain, with winds from 20 to 70 mph. I expect both running backs (Gore/Alexander) to get 30+ carries a piece.

Points: 0

#90 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 4:46pm

Stupid Smarch weather.

Okay, updated lineup, with Hasselbeck, A. Bryant, and D. Jackson out (leaving the SEA defense in):

QB -P. Rivers
RB - D. McAllister, C. Houston, J. Norwood
WR - A. Johnson, V. Jackson
K - N. Kaeding
Def - SEA

Alternatives -
L. Washington, R. Droughns (@ BAL)

I can't believe I have 5 spots on my roster taken up by SEA & SF.

So do I put Droughns in for Norwood? And pray? Or keep Norwood in and pray?

Ah well, at least FO got me to the playoffs.

Points: 0

#91 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 4:49pm

Rivers shouldn't be bad - he was quite good against KC last time they played. He should be more consistent than Hass.

I'll say it this way - if you need a TON of points from your QB, you have to go with Hass. If you need at least an average performance, you've got to go with Rivers.

Droughns...ugh. What a horrible spot to be in.

Points: 0

#92 by Jon (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:09pm

If Hasselbeck (SF) is caught in his storm, but who should I start:

Roethlisberger (@Car)
McNair (Cle)
Harrington (@Buf)? isn't showing good news.
Who should be my alternative?

Points: 0

#93 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:21pm

How about Favre instead of Hasselbeck and Romo. Any thoughts on that? I'm a little scared of both these guys right now. Favre has Detroit this week. I see its suppose to be 40 and just a little cloudy in Green Bay sunday.

Points: 0

#94 by Xian (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:23pm

Re: #91 Yep. My team has been solid all year, but I don't think it's going to do it for this 2nd round game.

I don't know that I need a ton of points...Rivers was fine when I played him when Hasselbeck was out. I'd feel better if DJax was playing though. Well, without the rain.

#92, that's tough...McNair, I guess? CLE's pass DVOA is the worst. Wow, I wouldn't have expected Buffalo's to be higher than CAR. Hmm.

Points: 0

#95 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:29pm

Plus Carolina's two starting CB and #4 CB are all injured.

Points: 0

#96 by dbt (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:29pm

WR: Braylon Edwards @Baltimore, Andre Johnson @NE, or Santonio Holmes @Carolina?

Also, I have the same Hasselbeck vs. Rivers dilemna as apparently half the posters here. I've penciled in Rivers but I'll probably check the weather tonight before gametime.

Points: 0

#97 by dbt (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 5:51pm

btw, on my other site I have some breaking news regarding Bears DT Tank Johnson's house being raided in an apparent drug investigation this morning. Click my name for deets.

Points: 0

#98 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 6:09pm

Why does someone who got a $1.7 million bonus 18 months ago and is apparently on a pretty good salary sell drugs?

It just boggles the mind. Why do these highly paid athletes get involved with crime that doesn't pay nearly as well as their salaries? In 42 more months he would have another huge payday and another contract. If they want to deal drugs so bad, why can't they wait until they're out of football?

He might be totally innocent, but this is something that seems to happen over and over again.

Do you think he set himself up for a bust because he would rather play for the Bengals?

Points: 0

#99 by dbt (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 6:12pm

morganja: A man who was not him was taken away from the house in handcuffs. He may have a friend who is a complete moron.

Points: 0

#100 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 6:19pm

A warrant served at his house, though, that found what it was looking for. That's not a good sign. Unless it was a warrant for an autographed football from a very admiring Chicago Judge.

Points: 0

#101 by dbt (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 7:21pm

The update I've heard is that he is being charged with possessing up to 6 unregistered weapons, which would violate his probation if the preponderance of evidence indicates that he has done so.

His moronic buddy was charged with felony cannabis possession.

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#102 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 7:35pm

Ugh. God damn Bears. What, the horriblus Grossman wasn't enough? Or the loss of Harris and Brown? No, you've got to be INCREDIBLY stupid.


Points: 0

#103 by morganja (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 8:12pm

Six Handguns?

Wouldn't it be cheaper just to hire a bodyguard rather than get suspended from the NFL for a year while serving jailtime? It's ate least no more expensive than paying a lawyer to get him out of this mess.

Points: 0

#104 by calig23 (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 9:37pm

Click my name for this...

It's not Robo-Punter, but it's close enough...

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#105 by Eddo (not verified) // Dec 14, 2006 - 11:34pm

103: I doubt the guns were really for protection, probably more for the "attitude" that comes with owing six(!) guns.
The purpose doesn't matter, though; it was still an incredibly stupid thing to do.
And I really hate to look at it like this, but as my dad pointed out, by the time it ever gets to court, the season will be over. Combine that with the NFL's slow suspension process and Johnson probably won't miss any games this year.

Points: 0

#106 by Darth Goofy (not verified) // Dec 15, 2006 - 12:29am

Quick fantasy question...

I need to start one QB, Kitna at GB or Grossman vs TB. I am leaning towards Grossman... but does he have more -7 point games in him?

Points: 0

#107 by Wanker79 (not verified) // Dec 15, 2006 - 10:45am

Holy Crap! When I pick a team consisting of as many Raiders as I could it was just supposed to be a joke. I just checked the Loser League for the first time in a couple weeks and saw The Oakland Miasma of Suck tied for 5th. And that's with Andrew Walter and LaMont Jordan getting his with the penalty every week.

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#108 by Pat (not verified) // Dec 15, 2006 - 11:05am

I need to start one QB, Kitna at GB or Grossman vs TB. I am leaning towards Grossman… but does he have more -7 point games in him?

Grossman. Absolutely. Chicago's playing joke defenses for the entire rest of the year. He won't be as good as he was in the beginning of the season, but he won't be god awful. Evil Rex won't come out again until the playoffs (where he'll come out with a vengeance).

Points: 0

#109 by Yuri (not verified) // Dec 15, 2006 - 1:29pm

Re: 107
Wow--just chekced the roster, and it's quite a strategy for the Oakland Miasma of Suck! Would not work in 1st half LL due to buy week, but looks like will finish with at least an honorable mention in LL2.

I especially like the nice touch on the QB spot hedging Walter with Brooks :)

Points: 0

#110 by Rob (not verified) // Dec 15, 2006 - 2:04pm

QB question:
Romo or Grossman?

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#111 by Smartmonies (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 6:40am

Take the VIKINGS -3 & the RAIDERS -2.5 and thank me later

Points: 0

#112 by MDR (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 10:40am

M Jones-Drew or J Addai to accompany Rudi this weekend on the fantasy field? Thanks.

Points: 0

#113 by Darth Goofy (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 12:40pm

MDR - I would start MJD over Addai

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#114 by asg (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 3:54pm

Last chance -- Rivers or Romo? I am starting Tomlinson, Gates, and Glenn as well, so the question is whether starting Rivers means over-investing in the Chargers. Both face pretty bad pass defenses.

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#115 by Tom Kelso (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 6:23pm

I'm desperate here -- I need two out of these five:

Dom Rhodes, Cadillac, Travis Henry or the Carolina "De's" (Foster and Williams).

Believe it or not, I made the playoffs with these running backs. HELP!!

Points: 0

#116 by KillerB (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 7:45pm

Pick 2 of the 4:

Larry Fitzgerald
Terry Glenn
TJ Houshmandzadeh
Marques Colston

I'm leaning toward Glenn & Housh.

Points: 0

#117 by asg (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 8:14pm

115: Oof. Well, Caddy is out since he's @Chicago and Rhodes is a total boom/bust guy. I'd hold my nose and go with Henry and Williams.

116: I agree you have to start Housh. I'd also go with Fitzgerald since he's more consistently targeted than Glenn.

Points: 0

#118 by Sid (not verified) // Dec 16, 2006 - 10:22pm

I don't really like any of Ian and Bill's picks this week.

Points: 0

#119 by Richard (not verified) // Dec 17, 2006 - 2:20am

Should I start Reggie Bush, Tatum Bell or Cory Dillon this week? I can only start one of them as I already started Shaun Alexander.

Points: 0

#120 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 17, 2006 - 12:28pm

#119: I really like Bush to get some crazy yards/points of those three. I think Dillon will be hampered by not having a second back and by the Texans actually playing the run okay, and I think Bell will be hampered by playing on the Texans.

Points: 0

#121 by Richard (not verified) // Dec 17, 2006 - 12:57pm

120: Thanks Kal. I was leaning toward Bush because Washington can't stop passes to runningbacks.

Points: 0

#122 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 17, 2006 - 1:11pm

To be fair, Washington can't stop passes to anyone, nor can they stop runs. They really can't stop anything. Given how many touches Bush gets and how well he's been doing recently, I think you have to start him until they figure out how to deal with him - but right now, he's playing like Westbrook does, where you'll get 5-6 yard dunks and then some ridiculous 40-yard screen pass for a TD.

Points: 0

#123 by Eli (not verified) // Dec 17, 2006 - 1:56pm

last minute q--fitz (against Denver's #2 DVOA against #1s) or Justin Fargas (against the loo's 29th ranked D)? i have terrible fantasy playoff matchups, need all the help i can get...

Points: 0

#124 by Kal (not verified) // Dec 18, 2006 - 2:55am

Oh, I'm sorry about Bush. Ugh. Sorry sorry sorry.

Points: 0

#125 by Richard (not verified) // Dec 18, 2006 - 4:24am

124: No worries for now. I have a 30 point lead and my opponent only has Rudi Johnson left. At one point for 10 yards rushing/receiving and six points for a rushing TD, he could score that against Indy, but I'm still in it.

Points: 0

#126 by Pat (not verified) // Dec 18, 2006 - 11:21am

I don’t really like any of Ian and Bill’s picks this week.

Neither did reality, as Ian and Bill were a combined 1-5 this weekend. Picking 10+ point favorites to cover is always dangerous.

Points: 0

#127 by Sid (not verified) // Dec 21, 2006 - 1:43am


Points: 0

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