Last Week: 6-1
John McCain suggested suspending WVFL play until his campaign was through the crisis of being run by people who don't know what they're doing, but that idea was shot down like Sarah Palin personally shooting down Vladimir Putin's MiG invading Alaskan airspace, and so we shall play the games. Whether McCain shows up for the ceremonial coin flip before the first game, nobody knows.
Lake Balboa Ladybugs (1-2) at Crafton Tough Kids (2-1)
I thought my team might be okay this season until I heard John McCain say the fundamentals of my roster were strong. At that point, I knew it was a lost season. But with Addai's bye closing him down like the credit market and Colston and Shockey crippled like big banks, a large bipartisan lifeline bailout to liberate Lake Balboa has been laboriously birthed. The 13 other WVFL owners will contribute $2 each for an 8% stake in my team, with the remaining $1 serving as my golden parachute. And I'll need it, because I'm going to get killed this week.
McNabb might be okay because Philly will have to pass against Chicago and I don't loathe Boldin against the Jets, but quite literally, every one of my other starters is maybe worthy of a flex position gamble. Five flex players do not a winner make. Selving Young is clearly Denver's best runner, but unless he breaks off a 60-yard touchdown, I don't think he'll put up points. Hell, Shanahan might try to sub in Pittman when Young hits the 10-yard line with only open field in front of him.
I brought Crafton into the West View world, but they are going to take me out. This is the first week Palmer looks like a good play, former Ladybug Chris Perry will love running untouched through the Cleveland defense and even though Ward, Miller and White will be bottled up by good defenses, the Tough Kid starters will be taken out of the game by the middle of the third quarter. On the plus side, I'll probably won't witness it in real time because we're going to the beach in Malibu with friends. I hope it rains in all of Pennsylvania, you dicks.
The Pick: Crafton Tough Kids 71 - Lake Balboa Ladybugs 50
The People's Elbow (2-1) at St. A's Crusaders (1-2)
The Crusaders have broken out a new uniform and logo this week, but they should be more concerned with winning as opposed to marketing. Ryan Grant hasn't hit the end zone yet this year and faces a tough Tampa defense. Santana Moss is enjoying a resurgence on par with that of the New Deal, and an iffy Dallas pass defense gives him a good shot at points. But Crayton, Thomas Jones and Michael Bush are mostly good for filling up roster spots. Which is a type of skill, I guess. As usual, Drew Brees will be passing early, often and late against the Niners, but both the Saints and the Ladybugs are missing two of their best targets.
Jerry Porter somehow found his way into the Elbow lineup, which is amazing, because he's yet to find his way into the Jaguar lineup. Perhaps Nate is too busy trying to figure out how to rig the WVHL draft so he gets Crosby to pay attention to the boring old NFL injury report. Yahoo! has Roethlisberger down for 12 points this week, but unless QBs now receive points for getting sacked, that's going to be a tough one. Yet the struggles of Ben & Jerry won't matter much this week because what Brandon Marshall and Frank Gore do to Kansas City and New Orleans will be will as painful as watching Sarah Palin without her talking points.
Hey, did you guys hear there's an election coming up? No, seriously! I'm still undecided, but I have a pick in this game.
The Pick: The People's Elbow 80 - St. A's Crusaders 68 - Nate's Lowest Possible "Random" WVHL Draft Spot 3
Newbomb Turk (1-2) at LetsGoPens (2-1)
On the last three Sundays, Old Man Tony has been burning up the internet like these ladies did when they found out Clay Aiken gets pumped harder than an oil well in Riyadh. Living in Los Angeles for almost 10 years, I have learned that there are tops and bottoms and Clay is most definitely a screaming bottom. Speaking of bottoms, Newbomb Turk will be at the bottom of the standings in December no matter how many roster moves he makes. I mean, the guy picked up Correll Buckhalter before Brian Westbrook even hit the ground. Chansi Stuckey didn't last a week in Newbomb City. He even bought a house, the poor guy! And now Le'Ron McClain is the answer, it seems. Whatever question he is the answer to, I don't want to hear it.
But let's not worry about December, let's worry about Sunday. Especially because this Sunday could turn out great for TK. A WVFL win and the WVHL draft. A win, I say? I sure do. If Chris Chambers draws DeAngelo Hall in coverage instead of Nnamdi Asomugha, he could have a good day. And if Braylon Edwards doesn't do something this week, he never will. Scheffler and Pittman should hit the end zone and even though the Bear defense will crush Buckhalter, Newbomb has the Bear defense.
On the other sideline, Darren McFadden has turf toe, a tough defense and an insane owner to contend with. Joey Galloway is most likely out, Calvin Johnson is definitely out (bye week) and Kevin Curtis is still out, so barring some roster shuffling, the Pens are thinner at WR than the actual Pens are on defense.
The Pick: Newbomb Turk 75 - LetsGoPens 66
Brookline Bucs (0-3) at Vanduhlay industries (2-1)
Let's look for a silver lining in the Brookline September. Um...well...the Pirates are just about done and the Brookline Bucs will definitely crack the 200-point barrier Sunday. I mean...there's no way they just score 6 points, right? Right? So that's the silver lining. The giant dark cloud, however, is the fact that Isaac Bruce is Brookline's #1 receiver this weekend. A situation like that is so toxic almost qualifies for Superfund cleanup dollars. What's even worse, Randy Moss has a bye this week. How is Brookline going to make up those 2 points? With Edgerrin James? Bitch, please!
Even with Brandon Jacobs not playing, Yahoo! thinks Vanduhlay will win. As terrible as Steven Jackson has been this season, he has to be an improvement over a guy on vacation, right? Right? But will Jackson even make the starting 9 on Sunday? I mean, Vanduhlay still starts Fargas, who's been hurt for three weeks, and they still have Tatum Bell on the bench even though he isn't on an NFL roster. Have I mentioned that Vanduhlay is 2-1 after squeaking past Newbomb and Stringfellow in the last two weeks? Mainly because Jay Cutler is the CEO of Vanduhlay industries.
The Pick: Vanduhlay industries 61 - Brookline Bucs 55
Atlas Shruggz (0-3) at Purple Swirls (3-0)
The Swirls might be just a tad vulnerable this week. Westbrook is probably out, Chris Johnson faces the best run defense in the league, Robert Meachem is an all or nothing flex play and the bench doesn't really have any better options. But, as Caulen's luck would have it, he's facing one of the worst teams in the league for the second week in a row. And in a case of the apple landing right next to the tree, Chris Johnson faces the Viking defense, which Caulen has.
Philip Rivers is going to destroy the Oakland defense to the point where Al Davis will finally fire Lane Kiffin, even though his pet Rex Ryan runs the defense. Every time Houshmacantwaittobeafreeagent catches a pass, it'll be double pain for Atlas, who can only watch Chad Johnson flail about with a lot of noise and gold fronts. Deuce McAllister is still too hurt to play, but Atlas literally has no other option. The word literally gets tossed around too much these days, but in this case it's apt. All three Atlas bench riders have byes.
You know what? Half the league is in horrble shape this week for various reasons, and I'm playing a team that in heavyweight fighting shape, ready to run up the score. Nietzsche said god is dead, but I know the schedule gods are alive and they are as deviant as the old Greek gods. Fuck you, schedule gods, you calendar-hugging dildos.
The Pick: Purple Swirls 88 - Atlas Shruggz 75
Lowcountry All Stars (3-0) at Iron City Pounders (1-2)
Allow me to recreate a week's worth of IM conversations with Mr. Jeffrey Webster.
NiceKroggy: Hey man, you gonna join hockey?
IKnowAll: Eh. Maybe. I unno. It's boring. You're boring. Do you like my new hair?
NiceKroggy: Come on, it'll be fun.
IKnowAll: LOL. You suck.
NiceKroggy: You sign up for hockey yet?
IKnowAll: Eh. All I'm thinking about right now is this grilled cheese sandwich I just gruffled.
NiceKroggy: Hey dude. WVHL is full. 12 guys signed up already.
IKnowAll: WHAT?!?!? I WANTED TO PLAY!
NiceKroggy: You took too long, I guess. I told you to sign up two weeks ago.
IKnowAll: SHIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS IS YOUR FAULT! KICK SOMEBODY OUT!
How is this relevant to football? Well, the best team in the league (so far) has no distractions as we move into fall. So look out, league. The All Stars are another squad with three bench guys byeing out this week, but nice for them, it won't hurt them too badly. Yeah, Kerry Collins went to Penn State, but the Viking pass defense is about 1/5th as good as the run defense. And that's not just a random fraction. I studied numbers! (Note: I did not study numbers)
Lynch and Bush have dream matchups, and Bush might catch 25 passes this week with Colston and Shockey out.
For the Pounders, Trent Edwards might be hurt by the fact that Buffalo should be up 14-0 by the second quarter and Buffalo will no longer be passing. That means more handoffs for Lynch, which will further drain the Pounders. Carolina will hold Turner under 100 yards, and although Brett Favre constantly threw to Donald Driver, he's now only occasionally throwing to Coles, which screws both Pounder receivers.
The All Stars are going to win this week. The only way to hurt Webster will be to tell him how much fun the WVHL draft was. Oh man, I got Martin Havlat in the 6th round!
The Pick: Lowcountry All Stars 95 - Iron City Pounders 83
Stringfellow Hawks (1-2) at Deathfromabove (2-1)
Is there anybody in the league who wasn't offered Dallas Clark in a trade today? If not, you should know that your team truly, truly sucks, because DFA was trying to move Clark like he was an ARM mortgage on a $2 million home. I guess that's what happens when you're the only team in the league with two TEs on the roster and you can't bear the thought of parting with Owen Daniels.
Kurt Warner should be okay against the Jets in the oldest quarterback battle in league history, Antonio Bryant should be nice with Al Harris out with internal injuries and Jamal Lewis might even toe tap his way to 90 yards and a score. Although Peterson against the Titans will be a tougher matchup than facts versus GOP voters.
Here's a little Hollywood story. A couple of years ago, I interviewed Bryan Cranston, who knew Jan Michael Vincent from the Airwolf days. We ended up talking about Jan Michael Vincent's car accident, which basically left JMV as a homeless drug addict. I bring this up not because I'm some Hollywood hot balls, but because the Hawks are on the same career path as their mascot, JMV. Minus the initial success. Parker is hurt, McGahee got his eye gouged by the Browns and the Hawks are starting two running backs from the same team, which might be an unprecedented fantasy strategy. Add in the fact that Brett Favre is just having fun out there throwing picks for the Jets and the fact that it is completely impossible to tell if Bernard Berrian or Matt Jones is worse and you have one bad team.
But here's the thing. I actually think Stringfellow wins this week. Week 4 is Airwolf. Good times. The rest of the season is the rest of JMV's life. Bad times.
The Pick: Stringfellow Hawks 75 - Deathfromabove 71
By the way, y'all don't have to just passively read this thing. Feel free to light up the comments section with pithy remarks.