Week 3 in the NFL is when we know some things for certain, when we feel fairly certain about other things and we're completely uncertain about the rest of the things. It's a great week!
Lake Balboa Ladybugs (1-1) at Purple Swirls (2-0)
By going into the Yahoo! archives and requesting the relevant microfiche on past West View seasons, I see that I am 5-10-1 lifetime against Caulen in football and hockey. I am Oates and he is Hall. For me, this is a circle the calendar game every year and for Caulen it is basically a bye week.
Speaking of frustration, watching the Steagles game this Sunday is going to be absolutely brutal for me. If McNabb does anything good outside of garbage time, it'll be tempered by the hurt that he's beating the Steelers. If Westbrook does anything, the pain will be tripled because Caulen has him. I know you think it would only double, but Caulen's guys doing anything against me is already double pain.
I'm going to bench DeSean Jackson and start new Ladybug Jerricho Cotchery in his stead. He's already familiar with our intricate 1,100-page playbook and this way I won't have to make any Faustian bargains like, "It's okay if Jackson catches two TDs as long as the Steelers win 28-14." It's called integrity, people. Google it sometime.
(NOTE: This is what comes up when you Google integrity.)
The Jacksonville defense is down this season, but the Colts line is way down, even with Jeff Saturday limping/rushing back into action, so I probably still cannot count on Addai. Shockey is due for a touchdown, but whether Selvin Young or Tim Hightower starts at RB2, the result will probably be 7 points. Not too awesome. Also, Anquan Boldin will probably not score another 32 points this week. Chester Taylor may start at W/R because of Peterson's hamstring troubles, but against a Carolina defense and with a Gus Frerotte offense, who knows what he can actually do.
I think Caulen is possibly overthinking things by starting Irish pub proprietor J.T. O'Sullivan against the Lions. Even with the discount he'll get on jalapeno poppers. Not that it isn't a good matchup, but fickle fantasy fate probably portends that Trent Edwards will have a better game against the Raiders just because Caulen cut him. Man, I just had the English language singing with alliteration right there.
T.J. Houshmyteamisterrible probably won't do too much, but Steve Smith has a lot of pent up energy to let loose on a bad Vikings pass defense. Julius Jones is going from a bad defense last week to an even worse one Sunday, so even the worst running back in the league might put up some points this week. Especially since his quarterback needs back surgery and his #1 wideout is a recovering alcoholic.
The Pick: Purple Swirls 91 - Lake Balboa Ladybugs 77
The People's Elbow (2-0) at LetsGoPens (1-1)
Yahoo! has pencilled in Frank Gore for 20 points against Detroit this week. If that doesn't get Matt Millen fired, the only thing left is being caught getting a knob polish from William Ford's wife in the backseat of a Corvette. Frank Gore didn't score 20 points in two games last year. Speaking of 2007, the Saints had the worst corners in the league then and they haven't gotten better in 2008. And their top two guys are hurt. If Brandon Marshall could torture a decent corner last week, the only thing that can stop him this week is if Jay Cutler gets tired of throwing to him. Or various law enforcement agencies.
Nate is going to need Ben, Brandon and Frank to carry the team in Week 3, but Clint only can count on Terrell and Calvin, so maybe it's not so bad for the Elbow. While Caulen is collecting and cutting quarterbacks like Brian Billick, Clint seems like he's going to gut it out with Marc Bulger no matter how terrible the Rams are. Maybe Clint also went to Central Catholic. McFadden is hurtish and Ronnie Brown is splitting carries against a strong defense. Clint is going to be hoping for some Monday night defensive magic against Brett "Four Plays" Favre, but unless he gets a point for every time Kornheiser gushes about the Golden Manchild, he's probably going to come up short.
The Pick: The People's Elbow 85 - LetsGoPens 68
Newbomb Turk (0-2) at Brookline Bucs (0-2)
A brief history of weird trades. In 1962, the Indians traded Harry Chiti to the Mets for a player to be named later. After two months of .195 hitting, the Mets named Chiti as the later player. In 1973, fellow Yankees Mike Kekich and Fritz Peterson traded wives, children and dogs. In May of this year, minor league baseballer John Odom was traded for 10 bats. And just this week, Scott Henry and Tony Kress exchanged Braylon Edwards and Fred Taylor for Roy Williams and Edgerrin James.
This trade is odd for a couple of reasons. One, of the four players involved, none are shaping up to be too great this season. It's like two neighbors exchanging blue recycling bins and inviting the other to keep whatever garbage they like. Look at this milk carton! It would make a perfectly good bird feeder! These plastic grocery bags can be used for scooping kitty litter! Two, TK and Skip play each other this week. The chances of somebody beating his former team are about 104%. And that former team will be staring at an 0-3 record and wondering why they didn't wait five more days for an utterly meaningless trade.
After seeing Edgerrin James go this week, Larry Johnson has started keeping his stuff in a small box in the Turk locker room. On top of the box is tape gun. He is ready to go at a moment's notice. Tony Scheffler will be able to get as many points against the Saints atrocious pass defense as Jay Cutler feels like giving him, and Michael Pittman should be able to get a touchdown, though not too many yards. Fred Taylor might be able to have a decent day against of porous Colts defense, much to the chagrin of his former owner.
If Randy Moss doesn't do anything against Miami, you know he's done for the year. The Selvin Young trade would be a rip off in the opposite direction in that event. Roy Williams should do more against San Francisco than Edwards will against Baltimore, but he'll also complain more so it washes out. Edgerrin James is not going to do a damn thing against Washington and will go right back on the trade block after only five days in Brookline. Warrick Dunn against Chicago? Pass. But won't the Sunday night game be fun as Romo and Rodgers go head to head for the Turk and Bucs?
The Brookline Bucs are reeling right now. The fewest points in the league, the most roster moves...I don't see what's going to change for them this week.
The Pick: Newbomb Turk 70 - Brookline Bucs 69
St. A's Crusaders (1-1) at Crafton Tough Kids (1-1)
Crafton is so desperate to get Carson Palmer going that they traded for Chris Perry, hoping that having a fellow Bengal in the shed will inspire Palmer. Though it's more likely to inspire Larry to hate the Bungles even more. The hardest thing for Crafton to do this week will be to hand in the lineup card, because Ward, White, Brandon Jackson and Vincent Jackson all have decent matchups. Without question, the two guys left on the bench will be the two guys with the most points. Crafton is also starting the Giant defense, so Palmer's interceptions will actually help since it's -1 for the QB, but +2 for the DST. This will be the first time ever a fantasy owner hopes his own quarterback throws eight picks.
Drew Brees has a dream matchup because Denver's offense will light up the Saints, meaning Brees will be passing all game. And the Denver defense isn't exactly the Rocky Mountains, so Brees can torch them. But after that...the rest of the lineup would test even Christ's patience. In fact, after Brees, it's entirely likely that the best Crusader will be Sarah Palin. Excuse me, I mean the New England defense against Miami. Simple mistake to make, since Tedy Bruschi is about as qualified to be Vice President.
The Pick: Crafton Tough Kids 81 - St. A's Crusaders 65
Atlas Shruggz (0-2) at Iron City Pounders (0-2)
Here's the good news. Whoever loses this game will have company at 0-3. They will not be down in that cold, dark basement all by themselves. But who will it be? Well, if these two teams were on the staircase together, the Pounders would be facing up and Atlas Shruggz would be facing down. Because after Philip Rivers and his perfect matchup against the Jets, the other Shruggzers are either bad, have a bad matchup or both. Oh, except Greg Jennings. Chad Cero has been completely invisible this season unless a microphone is in front of him, Maroney is hurt against and nobody runs against Minnesota, not even Jon Stewart.
Vernon Davis will never be as good as he was at the draft combine and if Dallas Clark comes back, not only is he better than Davis, he's taking all of Anthony Gonzalez' targets away. The Shruggz were incredibly unlucky the first two weeks of the season, but in Week 3 they're just regular bad.
I will guarantee Santonio Holmes DOESN'T catch a touchdown for a basic reverse jinx. And now he will catch a touchdown. You are welcome, Pounders. If MoJoDo's ankle isn't bothering him, he should be able to run on the Colts, who are missing fellow medicine ball Bob Sanders. Even if MJD32's ankle is broken, what Michael Turner does to the Chiefs should be enough to carry both backs. And if Kevin Smith is ever going to do anything, this is the week. I know Ben Affleck is pulling for him.
The Pick: Iron City Pounders 93 - Atlas Shruggz 55
Lowcountry All Stars (2-0) at Deathfromabove (2-0)
If the preceding game is red, this one is violet. At the other end of the spectrum, you see. Whoever triumphs puts an early hammer lock on first place. Problem is, in the Death backfield, one guy has a hamstring issue and the other guy has a Baltimore issue. Plus, Lewis also has a hamstring issue. This team's running game will be...wait for it...fucked. You thought I was going to say hamstrung, didn't you? DIDN'T YOU?! Stop thinking some commonly, man. On another note, I bet if Peterson pulled his hamstring, it would make a crack like a line drive into the gap. Eddie Royal and Plaxico should be all kinds of silly in the points department, but they probably won't be enough to carry the entire Death squad.
If Reggie Bush played receiver, he would be just so lovely against Denver. But as long as he's in the backfield, he's not so great. He'll probably catch a pass in space and turn it into a touchdown, though. Manning, Evans and Lynch are all just chomping a bit against terrible defenses and if Sammy Morris is indeed the main Patback against the Dolphins, I think you'll agree that he's a nice play. Webster has to sell a little piece of soul to pull for the Eagle D against the Steelers and that's a significant statement, because he started with very little soul to spare.
If you would've told me that Nate and Webster would be 3-0 and I'd be 1-2, I probably would not have shown up for the draft.
The Pick: Lowcountry All Stars 100 - Deathfromabove 67
Stringfellow Hawks (1-1) at Vanduhlay industries (1-1)
Despite my proclamation, they have still not capitlized the I in industries. They paid a marketing and design firm good money to come up with such an insouciant corporate identity and they're not going to let it go without a fight. They also aren't going to let the idea of benching Steven Jackson go without a fight, because Justin Fargas still has his spot in the starting lineup as of this writing. Despite the fact that Fargas has already been ruled out for Week 3. Maybe this is just subterfuge to mess up the Hawks' gameplanning. Although holding on to Tatum Bell when he's not even on an NFL roster is an attempt to mess us all up, because nobody in the league can explain that one.
Point of order - This team is currently ahead of me in the standings.
Jay Cutler honestly might have 300 yards and 4 touchdown this week against the Saints, plus another two-point conversion for good measure. And if Tyler Thigpen (who is white, incidentally) isn't atrocious, Dwayne Bowe should post points on the Falcons. (Problem: Tyler Thigpen will be atrocious) Brandon Jacobs and Antonio Gates have comic mismatches against their opponents this week.
The Hawks are benching Tomlinson. We are witnessing fantasy football history, people! The Hawks are currently flipping a Sacagawea dollar 1,000 times to determine whether Matt Jones or Reggie Brown starts at WR2. I personally think that's a lot of effort to choose which receiver scores 2 points, but it isn't my team.
This is going to be brutal. Tatum Bell is not on an NFL team, but he is on a 2-1 fantasy team. Oh, what a world.
The Pick: Vanduhlay industries 88 - Stringfellow Hawks 65