Monday, September 27, 2010

WVFL Week 3 Review

THE NEV-R-WINS 113.48 - BROOKLINE'S FINEST 76.94
I tell you what, it's going to be a lot of fun owning Adrian Peterson for the next five years. I mean, it is a true joy. And 9th-round pick Santana Moss is starting to look pretty good. Starting him in place of Bowe even woke sleepy old Dwayne up. Made me not even notice that picking up Maroney was a waste and Witten got hurt.

Mendenhall and Gore did great work, but nobody else chipped in. Schaub was useless and though it would've been funny if Janikowski's missed chip shot cost Brookline the win, we can only imagine how funny it would have been.

Owning McGahee is looking pretty nice right now, though.


THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW 136.40 - HAWKS 109.86
Here's something to nibble on. If Nate started Spiller over Hightower and Roy Williams over Colston, he would've put up 169.50. His leading scorer this week was Austin Collie! This app he used to draft his team is probably the single greatest use of an Apple product in history. Except for that one brochure somebody did one time.

The Hawks would've won 3 other games this week handily, but they drop to 1-2 anyway. The coverage on Boldin's three touchdowns looked like some sort of experiment to see if a guy could get TOO open, but having three Jaguars in your lineup is too much to overcome in most weeks, particularly one where they put up 3 points at home.


WHIZ-BANG GANG 91.94 - IRON CITY POUNDERS 67.22
All you can do is play the team in front of you, and this week the Whizzers got to play a team taking a nap. Andre Johnson has the dreaded high ankle sprain, Larry Fitzgerald has the dreaded shitty quarterback, Matt Forte has the dreaded non-blocking line and Michael Bush plays for the Raiders. This could be where things start heading downhill for the Pounders.

Clinton Portis has been relegated to a 3rd down back, teams will eventually triple-team Roddy White and David Buehler might get cut soon. Enjoy it while it lasts, bucko.


PURPLE SWIRLS 94.20 - FIREROCK ROCKERS 78.10
So...uh...hey, we all bench the wrong guy in the wrong week. But Lee Evans hasn't been good in like 6 years. The good news is, Tony is currently touring the country, seeing beautiful people everywhere. The bad news is, he checks in on his team from some $1 a minute truck stop internet kiosk twice a week.

Now, just because the Swirls only have the 5th-most points in the league and have had the fewest points against by a 31-point gap, don't call them the fakest 3-0 team east of Kansas City. Because they are now the fakest 3-0 team west of Kansas City.

Question is, when Caulen finally gums up the gumption to start Vick over Brees in Week 4, is that when Vick falls apart? Only one way to find out...


DEATHFROMABOVE 125.96 - ST. A'S CRUSADERS 118.54
At the end of the San Diego/Seattle game, a delay of game moved San Diego back to the 17. On 3rd and 4th down, Rivers threw at Gates in the end zone twice, both were broken up. If Gates caught either one, it would've been another 7.7 points and a Crusader win. How 'bout them apples?

Of course, if you're going to have two defenses on your roster, don't start the one that is absolutely terrible. Start the good one instead. That would be another way to win.

Question. Are Peyton Hillis' 24 points the most ever by a white tailback? Somebody go look up Craig James' stats. All I know is, Hillis and Collie combined for 51 points this week and Jon Gruden called John Kuhn an old-style Packer running back, gritty and hardworking just because he couldn't come right out and say white with no moves.


LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 84.98 - ATLAS SHRUGGZ 81.54
The one black mark on my latest chance at a 6-0 week, this game is also the league's black mark. It's almost unfair that teams with 109 and 118 lost this week while the All Stars get a win just for the being the biggest turd in a small bowl.

If they gave bonus points for throwing off your back foot down the middle, Cutler would've secured a victory for the Shruggz. But as it stands, they're only left to wonder why they would even have Brandon Lloyd on their roster, let alone on the bench for his biggest game in 3 years. Knowing full well he won't score another 24 points the rest of the year.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

WVFL Week 3 Preview

LAST WEEK: 4-2
SEASON: 9-3

Elementary trending would tell us that this week's picks will go 3-3, but let's see if we can't do a little better.

Of course, I stumbled upon a realization today that it's so obvious that it's probably not that original. The germ of it was when I put in a waiver claim for Demaryius Thomas and was beaten to the punch. See, information overload has turned fantasy football into professional poker. We all have the same info, same stats, same advice and more or less the same approach. All we can really do is set up our team to give us the best odds, but the turning of the cards is what decides who wins and loses.

Which makes a 9-3 picks record all that much more incredible!

THE NEV-R-WINS (1-1) at BROOKLINE'S FINEST (2-0)
The last time Skip Henry started off 2-0, he won his first 5, got to 10-1 and won the title. That was in 2007. Eli Manning, Dallas Clark and Baltimore are the holdovers from that championship squad.

As for this week, if Pittsburgh held Chris Johnson to 33 yards, they should be able to hold Cadillac Williams to 3.3 yards. However, Baltimore going against Seneca Wallace should more than make up the difference. Look for Clark and Garcon to be slightly down, as Denver pulls off the emotional upset.

In one day, I went from mocking up "13-0, Here We Go!" t-shirts and bumper stickers to wondering if I'll ever win again. Matt Cassel is so stunningly bad that I'm benching Dwayne Bowe for Johnny Knox, and I want Greg Jennings to catch a touchdown to shut up Caulen and Larry more than to help my team at this point.

Fortunately for me, Adrian Peterson should have 35 carries for 198 yards against Detroit and Tom Brady treats Buffalo like a practice squads.

THE PICK: THE NEV-R-WINS 111 - BROOKLINE'S FINEST 105


THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW (1-1) at HAWKS (1-1)
The Hawks are going to lose this game. I'm not sure how long I should talk about them to feign politeness, but really, they are going to lose.

Which means that come Tuesday, The People's Elbow app will be 2-1, the least intimidating 2-1 team of all time. You know what? Screw these two teams, this game should be in the WNBA. Christ. If we're running with my poker analogy above, and I certainly am, Benson and Hightower are pocket fours.

THE PICK: THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW 89 - HAWKS 67


IRON CITY POUNDERS (2-0) at WHIZ-BANG GANG (1-1)
Yahoo is projecting only 11.83 points for Carson Palmer this week, which is incredibly low for a quarterback. They actually put Shaun Hill and Sam Bradford ahead of him. It might be time to stop thinking Carson Palmer is good. Fitz is getting the Nnamdi treatment and might not score half as many points as Welker.

(Side note: For a team that hasn't really been good since 1981, Pitt has churned out Fitz, Revis, McCoy, Otah and Palko in the past decade. A lot of talent there.)

I'm picking Atlanta as my 5-gold star upset of the week, so be happy about having Roddy White on your team. Rodgers will be involved in a 31-28 shootout Monday night and Ahmad Bradshaw will receive every single Giant carry this week so Brandon Jacobs learns his dumb lesson to not be dumb.

THE PICK: WHIZ-BANG GANG 99 - IRON CITY POUNDERS 88


PURPLE SWIRLS (2-0) at FIREROCK ROCKERS (0-2)
Papa Kress is touring the country in a tricked out old school bus just as younger Kress is preparing to move to the Bay City. It's like Pops is sweeping the country for safety before the boy hits the road. Wednesday, TK checked in from Eugene in order to pick up Matt Hasselbeck and Jason Snelling. Unfortunately, he hadn't heard the news that Michael Turner is fine and Hasselbeck is old.

Owning a Carolina back can't be any fun this year. It just can't be. Not that owning Justin Forsett is much better. And Caulen still doesn't have the courage of his convictions (or Andy Reid's convictions) as he continues to staple Vick to his bench. Free Michael Vick!

THE PICK: PURPLE SWIRLS 91 - FIREROCK ROCKERS 70


ST. A'S CRUSADERS (2-0) at DEATHFROMABOVE (0-2)
DFA took a chance on Vincent Jackson, underestimating just how goddamn stubborn A.J. Smith can be. Now Jackson isn't playing all season. On the other hand, Peyton Hillis is playing against Baltimore this week and DFA is starting him, so it's not like their active players are much help either.

You're not going to believe this, so I encourage you to check for yourself, but the St. A's bench is Vince Young, Ben, Santonio, Sidney Rice and James Jones. In other words, 2 guys who aren't league eligible for two weeks, one guy who might be out all year and two guys who are worthless.

If DFA is smart enough to get Marshawn Lynch in the starting lineup, I'll give them the win.

THE PICK: DEATHFROMABOVE 82 - ST. A'S CRUSADERS 76


ATLAS SHRUGGZ (0-2) at LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS (0-2)
St. Louis played Oakland last week and now this. Louis Murphy is actually a part of this matchup. I think there's no way Minnesota loses this week, but starting Favre over Cutler would be a tremendous mistake. And why does a team have two kickers?!!?

If there's any justice in the world, this game will end in a tie since neither team deserves a win ever.

THE PICK: ATLAS SHRUGGZ 90 - LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 60

Monday, September 20, 2010

WVFL Week 2 Review

Our shared dream of an all 1-1 league didn't come to pass this week, thanks to the grass roots efforts of the Tea Party, who hate an even distribution of anything. Maybe after week four we'll have our utopia.

THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW 105.60 - THE NEV-R-WINS 74.52
My dream of an undefeated season burned up on the launch pad like Apollo...whichever one burned up on the launch pad. 11? At least I didn't waste a good week from anybody. Though I went to a notary public to get my concerns about Dwayne Bowe officially certified. And I lost once again on flex roulette.

Tim Hightower still sucks, 80-yard TD run be damned. He had 10 carries for 35 yards and added one heaping pile of bullshit. Things went so well for Nate that Anthony Dixon had a TD on the bench and Sanchez outscored Peyton. Bah. It's early.


BROOKLINE'S FINEST 111.08 - LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 93.86
Webster was hoping that the Saints would hold Frank Gore in check, and in a way, they did. They kept him under 30 points. And Matt Schaub was so incredible that Brookline had Garcon post a 1.1 and Owens a 5.7 and they still put up 111. Thank God Brookline resisted whatever temptation there might be to start Eli after Schaub was so quiet last week.

The Great Waiver Order To Do of 2010 ended with Brandon Jackson getting 11 carries and eventually being replaced by a white running back, John Kuhn. John Kuhn is the name of a guy who goes to Packer games, not plays in them. Randy Moss didn't receive any bonus points for his incredible one-handed catch, and Jerome Harrison continues to play for the Browns.


WHIZ-BANG GANG 108.20 - HAWKS 91.46
What an adorable win. The WBG must be so proud of themselves. 38 points alone out of the Green Bay trampling and Wes Welker seems like he might have 800 yards and 20 TDs this year. And, even better, Ahmad Bradshaw will probably get every single Giants carry the rest of the year after Brandon Jacobs' spectacle Sunday night.

If Ryan Mathews just doesn't get hurt...


IRON CITY POUNDERS 109.80 - FIREROCK ROCKERS 85.94
Hopefully TK is in a Tacoma Motel 5 and didn't check in on this one. And if his quarterbacks are going to be Derek Anderson and David Garrard, he might as well just stay out on the road. Those two combined for 11.26 points this week. Jahvid Best had 45.20, almost as much as every Rocker (including bench players!) did.

The Pounders must have been freaking out with every Best update until they consulted TK's lineup and realized there was nothing else to worry about. I mocked the Mark Clayton waiver wiring, then he went out and made two TD grabs and nothing else. Now I am positive he's done for the year.


PURPLE SWIRLS 111.66 - DEATHFROMABOVE 57.66
Caulen made a big deal about really wanting Vick, then didn't play him and now Kolb is back. And Kolb will stay back because Big Andy dumped McNabb for him and he can't dump Kolb now. The Steelers D turned in one of the most incredible performances I've ever seen and it seems like they deserve more than 22 points. Lastly, I was so, so wrong about Miles Austin.

What can you say about this DFA game? Brandon Jacobs got 8 yards, then threw his helmet into the stands. He demanded a trade Monday which the Giants rejected. He probably won't do much more this year. DFA started a white tailback who plays for Cleveland. About the only good news is that Chris Johnson's complete annihilation by Lawrence Timmons isn't the reason DFA lost. Every single other thing in this matchup was.


ST. A'S CRUSADERS 98.28 - ATLAS SHRUGGZ 56.10
Last year, DFA and Atlas finished 4th and 5th. This year, they're already battling for 2011's first pick. Brett Favre looks older than Melanie Griffith and Cutler has thrown for 700 yards already, so look for a change at QB next week. Shonn Greene, bust.

Kyle Orton is secretly good. Vince Young had -.16 this week. And that concludes this week's episode of Six Blowouts.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

WVFL Week 2 Preview

LAST WEEK: 5-1
SEASON: 5-1

I'm beginning if chasing the 6-0 week is like when my dad sent me snipe hunting as a kid. I've never seen one and really don't even know what it looks like, but I'm still dumb enough and enthusiastic enough to keep chasing.

THE NEV-R-WINS (1-0) at THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW (0-1)
My team name, once a painfully accurate admission, is threatening to take on the irony levels of calling a fat guy Slim. Or Sarah Jessica Park attractive. As for this week, if Dwayne Bowe only has 3 targets again I'll officially be concerned, and I can already tell that I'm going to pick the wrong flex player week in and week in. On the other hand, Tom Brady has a personal mission to destroy the Jets this year since they dared to be on TV instead of him, and Yahoo fell in love with Arian Foster so hard and so fast that they're already predicting more points for him than AP.

For the Elbow, I don't know how DeSean Jackson is going to get the ball except on an end around, and the Ravens just spent Monday reminding us that people don't run on them. And Tim Hightower still sucks, as usual. Peyton threw 57 passes last week and will need at least 75 for Nate to pull this one out.

The timing is interesting, though. Thanks to scheduling, I should have an enormous lead while grilling dinner Sunday night, then I'll sweat out Peyton's game and he'll make up some ground before Colston and Hartley go to work Monday night. Lucky for me, Hartley's misses count as 0 points.

THE PICK: THE NEV-R-WINS 91 - THE PEOPLE'S ELBOW 79


BROOKLINE'S FINEST (1-0) at LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS (0-1)
The battle to finally decide who Marlin likes more. Speaking of PR savvy, Webster hit the phones and internet all day Tuesday to make sure he got waiver priority to land Brandon Jackson. Caulen adroitly argued that the last place team after Week 1 isn't necessarily the league's worst, but there's enough prima facie evidence on hand to think maybe the All Stars are. One staged press conference with Gloria Allred later and Webster was coming off more sympathetic than Bayou shrimper with one hand and a tar ball on his goatee.

Unfortunately, Brandon Jackson is only one player and when the media went on to the next story, the anti-sex Senate candidate in Delaware, the All Stars still had Jerome Harrison and Knowshon Moreno starting in the backfield. Oh, and Revis blanketis Randy Moss. Put Moss down for 3 catches, 24 yards and the All Stars down for 2 losses.

As for Brookline...still starting Michael Crabtree, huh?

THE PICK: BROOKLINE'S FINEST 79 - LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 73


HAWKS (1-0) at WHIZ-BANG GANG (0-1)
Like a child with a rag doll, I have grown tired playing with the Whiz-Bang Gang and tossed them aside to move on to more interesting things. Now that I'm done with them, however, things are looking up. I think they're going to win this week. Sure, that's like a major leaguer hitting .390 in a AAA rehab stint, but at this point a win is a win.

Rodgers and the Green Bay defense will really enjoy hosting Buffalo, and Tom Brady really enjoyed watching Kyle Wilson not cover anybody on Monday night. I'm saying it here, Wes Welker will have a minimum of 15 catches Sunday, and maybe as many as 18. 15 catches, 135 yards and 1 TD. Book it. Ronnie Brown isn't going anywhere against Miami, but since Indy's run defense debuted a revolutionary 4-gap technique, look for Ahmad Bradshaw to pick up the slack.

God, Philip Rivers is a bitch. Can you even imagine the agony of being on his high school team. The best part is, he claims he doesn't swear, so each petulant foot stomp is paired with a "DANG IT!" I was that was miked up every week.

THE PICK: WHIZ-BANG GANG 115 - HAWKS 80


IRON CITY POUNDERS (1-0) at FIREROCK ROCKERS (0-1)
Last week, TK made a to-do about taking a month to drive through the States, from Pittsburgh to Seattle, then down to Arizona. It's possible that he's rounding up illegal immigrants from the heartland's agribusiness factories and then dropping them off at their choice of borders. I really have no idea.

Anyway, come Wednesday, there he is on waivers dropping Berrian for Derek Anderson and Kolb for Garrard. So not only did he manage to hear about the games in some sports bar in Terre Haute, he then found wi-fi in Bismarck and jumped online to make some meaningless moves.

Happily, he'll be somewhere outside of Helena on Sunday, because his team is not looking good. Detroit will be down 14 to Philly before you know it, so Best's carries will be limited, and starting McCluster is literally hoping for a kick return TD from a guy who doesn't return every kick. And Dennis Dixon doesn't throw downfield, wasting Mike Wallace's abilities. (Side note: Cortland Finnegan says he wants to be the dirtiest player in the league and take away that title from Hines Ward. So that should be interesting on Sunday.)

I knew somebody would be rushing to add Mark Clayton this week. I also know now that it's a bad idea to start him against Asomugha. Luckily, the other Pounders will pick up the slack.

THE PICK: IRON CITY POUNDERS 89 - FIREROCK ROCKERS 77 + 1 MOUNT RUSHMORE SNOW GLOBE


PURPLE SWIRLS (1-0) at DEATHFROMABOVE (0-1)
Caulen claimed he played the role of agitator this week just to get more attention in the preview. I feel like Don Rickles and people are intentionally wearing clothes and sitting in the front row. Should I go along with it or retain control of my act? Well, he also claimed that he really wanted Michael Vick. Except...he already has Brees and can't play Vick at flex. Yet. Vick is like the deep-fried Klondike I had at the county fair last week. Sounds like a good idea, looks good when you put it in the lineup, halfway through you wonder what you were thinking.

Though, interestingly, Vick is possibly a better play against Detroit this week. So! I guess this was increased attention, but none of it was particularly funny. Call our positioning battle a push.

Johnson vs. the Steeler D takes on added significance with Caulen playing the Steeler D, but Brandon Jacobs against Indy carries no significance for anybody anywhere. This one is going to come down to Monday night and Brees vs. his own defense. With Alex Smith involved, that's a pretty tricky matchup.

THE PICK: PURPLE SWIRLS 85 - DEATHFROMABOVE 84


ST. A'S CRUSADERS (1-0) at ATLAS SHRUGGZ (0-1)
Our 6th straight game pitting 1-0 vs. 0-1 means the entire league could be tied for first come Tuesday, taking parity to a ridiculous extreme. Also ridiculous is starting Kyle Orton at quarterback. Also ridiculous is Percy Harvin's hip now hurting as much as his head. Also ridiculous is Kansas City breaking out the quadruple team to stop Antonio Gates.

Hakeem Nicks will have 3 points this week since he had 3 touchdowns last week, but Steve Smith always destroys the Bucs. Destroys 'em bad. Turner will feel much better running against Arizona, and if Shonn Greene could have a good day, except Tomlinson will steal carries and the Jets will be trailing the whole game.

And, as usual, I ran out of jokes two games in and the 6th preview gets short shrift.

THE PICK: ATLAS SHRUGGZ 101 - ST. A'S CRUSADERS 90

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

WVFL Week 1 Review

Almost as fun as the season-opening draft, the Week 1 waiver wire rush is always a fun madhouse. Sure, Brandon Jackson should and will be added, but let’s not wear treads in Brandon Lloyd’s driveway just yet. Let sense carry the day for once.


THE NEV-R-WINS 118.62 – WHIZ-BANG GANG 97.72

I certainly wasn’t expecting 230 yards and 3 TDs, but I definitely drafted Arian Foster on purpose. Of course, I also drafted Peterson on purpose and Childress benched him. Luckily, Foster went off and Brady recovered from having his hair messed up in a car crash to throw 3 TDs. Anyway, people are refusing to give me credit, much like they refused to give me credit for a fantastic playoff run last year. I asked Hines Ward what to do about this and smiled that 50-tooth smile and said, “Motivation, baby! Nobody outside of this locker room believed in us!”

The silver lining for the WBG is that Foster and the Texans beat the Colts, which means there will possibly come a time one day when the WBG beat me. Right now, they have Week 12 triple circled on their calendar.


BROOKLINE’S FINEST 80.08 – THE PEOPLE’S ELBOW 72.72

C.J. Spiller only contributed 1.5 points to the effort, which…if we can’t count on a rookie running back sharing carries with two other guys on a terrible team to average at least 5 points a week, what can we count on in this life? Kevin Kolb couldn’t get the ball to DeSean Jackson and then he got hurt, so Vick started not getting the ball to Jackson. And the Minny defense somehow only had 2 points even though they held the Saints to 14. At least Manning’s huge day made this one look respectable.

Michael Crabtree is terrible. Alex Smith is terrible. It’s not a good combo for fantasy points. In fact, I wonder if any other team in other league throughout the universe in perpetuity had Schaub, Crabtree and Gore all starting and still won. Seems unlikely.


HAWKS 73.42 – FIREROCK ROCKERS 69.36

With Rivers, Boldin and Mathews all playing Monday night, the Hawks certainly did save the best for last. Nothing quite like a 30-point comeback spread out over six hours. Especially nice for the Hawks that Rivers scored 5 tantrum points for flailing his arms, ripping his chinstrip off and kicking the ball after a delay of game. On another note, I try hard not to jump to conclusions after Week 1, but I said Mike Sims-Walker wouldn’t follow up last year and he had a nice, round 0 Sunday.

Clay Mathews, Jr. wrapping up Kolb’s arms and then piledriving him into the turf face first is basically what cost the Rockers the win. Surely Kolb had another 5 points left in him when he went out. Because with Stewart and Best only combining for 32 yards, the Rockers certainly needed more Kolb.


IRON CITY POUNDERS 106.00 – DEATHFROMABOVE 102.68

Well, let’s just say that if I was DFA, the recap of my game would be as long as a magazine and as unfocused as the Tea Party platform. Scoring the 3rd-most points and losing? Losing by 3.32 because Ryan Grant got hurt in the first half? Finding out Ryan Grant is done for the year? I would not be handling any of that well. At all.

The Texans lit up Indy, but Andre Johnson and Schaub combined for about 10 points. Odd. Meanwhile, the Pounders managed to get 26.3 points out of Larry Fitzgerald and the Arizona D in an uneven, 17-13 win. Also odd. And that Marion Barber bust ceiling is looking pretty high. Though I’m sure Matt Forte will have a 70-yard TD catch every week.


PURPLE SWIRLS 91.38 – ATLAS SHRUGGZ 83.54

The 20th pick of our draft, Shonn Greene, had two fumbles, a dropped pass and today Rex Ryan says he’ll now be splitting time with Tomlinson. Which means Brady, Calvin and Best, the 3 guys picked between Greene and Grant in the Curse Corner, should start to panic. San Francisco miraculously scored 3 points even though Seattle hung 31 on them.

When Jimmy Clausen is under center and you have a Carolina back on your team, that is a bad feeling. By the way, Greg Jennings had a touchdown and the much, much, much lusted after Jermichael Finley had none. Finley, clearly, is a total bust.


ST. A’S CRUSADERS 91.86 – LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 68.92

Well, this is uncomfortable. It’s like a buddy who refuses a beer while watching football so you keep ragging him and calling him a puss and waving beers at him until he finally explodes “I’m a recovering alcoholic and my dad just got a DUI!” It’s just like that. And thus, I won’t be mocking the All Stars for a while.

Darren McFadden had 21 points? When did that happen? So…how many teams lost by 8 points when Calvin Johnson’s 30-yard TD catch was ruled a drop? None in this league, of course, but still.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

WVFL Week 1 Preview

LAST SEASON: 50-32

While part of me wonders how many people spent Labor Day watching FOX News and getting excited about voting for the pro-business Republican Party when the richest 1% of Americans control more wealth than in even the robber baron days (irony alert!), another part of me is putting my seersucker blazer in mothballs.

And a third part of me is gearing up for football!


THE NEV-R-WINS at WHIZ-BANG GANG

The WBG has a chance to “avenge” last year’s title game destruction with a regular season win, if they want to believe both games are of equal importance. Of course, they won’t receive $200 for winning this one. (Minus my entry fee and minus the one person who didn’t pay)

First round pick Aaron Rodgers (official theme song here) probably won’t have much trouble putting up 20 points, but for every touchdown he throws to Greg Jennings (minimum: 2), the WBG will actually lose ground.

Conversely, Tom Brady intentionally doesn’t throw touchdowns to Wes Welker because he secretly hates this coaches’ son-like player. And even if the WBG keep things close in the QB and WR categories, I’m going to outrun him in the RB grouping by at least 30 points. Arian Foster is hotter and more Googled than a Nick teen star, whereas Beanie Wells sucks. Although the Ricky vs. Ronnie dynamic will be fun in this one.

THE PICK: THE NEV-R-WINS 132.16 – WHIZ-BANG GANG 59.68

(Wait, hang on, that was the WVFL Bowl score)

THE NEV-R-WINS 105 – WHIZ-BANG GANG 98


THE PEOPLE’S ELBOW at BROOKLINE FINEST

The battle for control of the ‘S, winner take all.

Some running back news coming out of this one, bad for both teams. Mendenhall will be losing goal line carries to Ike Redman and CJ Spiller has been named the #1 back…for Buffalo. Tough break for each team.

In Houston, that game is going to go one of two ways. Either Indy gets up 24-3 and hangs on for a 31-30 win…or Houston gets up 28-10 and loses the game 31-28 on a Dallas Clark TD catch with 00:30 remaining. Either way, expect big points for Manning, Schaub and Clark.

Which is the exact opposite of what you should expect from Tim Hightower.

THE PICK: BROOKLINE’S FINEST 91 – THE PEOPLE ELBOW 83


HAWKS at FIREROCK ROCKERS

This like when the California Angels became the Anaheim Angels. I didn’t like that and I don’t like the missing Stringfellow.

Kevin Kolb has had a shaky preseason, which means he’ll probably be booed at some point Sunday by the Philly fans, who always think things through to their logical conclusion. Lee Evans just plain sucks, though I’m sure Mike Wallace will get the Rocker start by Sunday.

Of course, none of that should matter since Maurice Jones-Drew should outscore the Hawk receiving corps by himself. Anquan Boldin goes up against Darelle Revis, which should keep him to about 4 points, and Mike Sims-Walker is a fluke who is going to spend this season proving his flukiness.

THE PICK: FIREROCK ROCKERS 88 – HAWKS 71


IRON CITY POUNDERS at DEATHFROMABOVE

I’m so old that I remember when you could buy hit singles on cassette and Carson Palmer was good. Those were the days. Speaking of remember the good times, this week is Matt Forte’s time to show he is actually going to be good again this year. If he can’t roll through Detroit, he’s done for good. Like Marion Barber.

Larry Fitzgerald is going to get wide open on a deep route Sunday and Derek Anderson will overthrow him by four yards. The Pounders will not get any points for that.

DFA is hoping the preseason trend of Palmer throwing exclusively to Terrell Owens was just a guy being polite to the new guest, as DFA has Ocho. And it’s not my team, but I’d be starting Jeremy Maclin over Brandon Jacobs. And I’d also be highly concerned about Mike McCarthy openly discussing how good Ryan Grant’s backup is and how ready he is for every-down duty.

THE PICK: IRON CITY POUNDERS 81 – DEATHFROMABOVE 65


PURPLE SWIRLS at ATLAS SHRUGGZ

Jermichael Finley is going to have 80 yards and 2 touchdowns in Week 1 to justify Caulen loving him and picking him early. Justin Forsett, however, will suck, justifying Seattle line coach Alex Gibbs’ decision to quit a week before the season starts. And when Carolina only manages 6 points against the Giants, “Acceptable trade value for DeAngelo Williams” will make the Top 5 on Google Trends.

Of course, those 6 points won’t help Steve Smith (old one) much either. Combine that with Turner and Greene (starring Shelley Long and Muriel Hemingway, coming to TNT this spring!) getting shut down by stout defenses, and it will seem like the creatives have indeed gone on strike for Atlas Shruggz. (Seriously, how many more references can I make to book I haven’t even read?)

THE PICK: PURPLE SWIRLS 97 – ATLAS SHRUGGZ 59


ST. A’S CRUSADERS at LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS

Coach Webster is using the season preview as bulletin board material in the Lowcountry locker room. Now his team has motivation, yet they still lack the talent to do anything with it. But I’ve said enough about this team, it’s time to let the anemic lack of points do the talking for me.

Oh wait, one last thing. When Randy Moss told The Boston Globe that he was unhappy with his team yesterday, he wasn’t referring to the Pats.

Jamaal Charles is going to have a surprisingly good game when Kansas City upsets San Diego on Monday night. That will be the only good performance for St. A’s.

THE PICK: ST. A’S CRUSADERS 60 – LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS 59

Saturday, September 4, 2010

WVFL 2010 Season Preview

WVFL 2010 PREVIEW

Like a Vassar English lit professor who complains about the coarsening of American culture and our growing idiocy as a country, but caught two minutes of Jersey Shore and now doesn’t miss an episode, I have a shameful hypocrisy in my life.

For years, I raved about my smarts and railed about all the luck involved in fantasy football...and then I went out and won the whole league. Now I don’t know what to think. Pretty sure it’s still mostly luck, but if I win again this year, then it’s definitely my smarts heroically overcoming the whims of the universe. Time will tell.

Presented without further ado, since the above was enough ado, here is the 2010 WVFL season preview, now with keepers!


DEATHFROMABOVE

Last season’s #2 seed was wasted in the second round of the playoffs, but that pain was eased with the draw of the #1 pick and getting Chris Johnson for the next five years. Sort of like popping a Vicodin four months after spraining your ankle.

DFA is like almost every other WVFL team this season, not overly intimidating but certainly not terrible, either. Parity has finally come to our mediocre league. Though not every team has two defenses and a two tight ends on the roster.

This should the most up and down team because, outside of Johnson, everybody on this team is capable of both 3- and 30-point games. Romo, Ocho, Smitho, Granto, you take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have an average team, oh, an average team.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 4th

2011 KEEPERS – Johnson

THE NEV-R-WINS

The New Orleans Jazz moved to Utah, the Minneapolis Lakers moved to Los Angeles, the Atlanta Flames moved to Calgary and they didn’t change their names, so I’m not changing mine. Plus, we have five gross of team logo pens sitting around and no need for them to go to waste.

Last year’s championship team was built in the fourth and fifth rounds and I’ll need to do the same this year to repeat. That said, the buzz around Dwayne Bowe and Arian Foster is getting so buzzy that they basically have no chance of being good. I was still defending Cedric Benson in Week 8 last year and trying to trade Ray Rice in Week 3 when McGahee was the goal line back. Like Hines Ward and the Tea Party, I thrive on the me against the world because the world is against me mentality.

Every single guy on my bench is either going to be a complete bust or the breakout candidate of the year. I didn’t mean to hoard scratch and win tickets, it just happened that way.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 1st

2011 KEEPERS – Peterson, Brady, Foster


ST. A’S CRUSADERS

The Crusaders had the 6th-most points last year, but dropped the last 4 games to finish 5-8. This year, they have one of the most interesting teams in the league. Interesting because they have two defenses, both ends of the Super Bowl XLIII game-winning touchdown pass (who are both suspended for four games), Sidney Rice as a possible keeper assets since he’s out at least six weeks and possibly all season, and San Francisco’s third running back.

But they also have the two young rushers everybody wants in Rice and Charles and Calvin Johnson. Since nothing in this world makes any sense, look for the Crusaders to have the 5th-fewest points this year and go 8-5.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 2nd

2011 KEEPERS Rice, Charles, Johnson


FIREROCK ROCKERS

The Rockers had the 5th-most points last year and atually dropped the last 5 games to finish 5-8. Point of order, either team would’ve made the playoffs at 6-7 based on points. Yet another casualty of Matt Forte’s swath of destruction in 2009.

But that was then! And this is now! And now they are not at all concerned about the rumors that Maurice Jones-Drew had some sort of vague knee procedure, and they’d thank you to stop asking about it.

Last year, the Rockers had Shady McCoy a year too earlier and TK liked being on vanguard so much that he went out and got Kevin Kolb, Kareem Huggins, Dexter McCluster and Mike Wallace a year too early. Oh, and Brandon Marshall a year too late and Larry Johnson five years too late. Johnson has since been dropped like…well, like a running back who is very slow and petulant.

This is a not all that great team that is going to have a couple of insane weeks where they destroy their opponent with 113 points. But only a couple.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 8th

2011 KEEPERS Jones-Drew, Best


ATLAS SHRUGGZ

People who read Atlas Shrugged wish it was still 1951 and Atlas Shruggz drafted like it was 2001, opening with three straight backs, the old Steve Smith and then Brett Favre. Favre, by the way, is already feeding the media tidbits about doctors draining cups of fluid and bone particles from his ankle, since he’s such a gutty hero. He's more annoying that a frat boy who saves his bottle counts so he can tell everybody how many beers he's had tonight.

The Shruggz also set themselves up for confusion by drafting Hakeem Nicks, who becomes the teammate of both Steve Smith in the NFL and Steve Smith in the WVFL. This will be hard to keep track of.

By the way, Shonn Greene is a good back, but he’s going to be seeing 11 men and 2 coaches stacking the line of scrimmage because Sanchez is so awful. Atlas has has two tight ends and two kickers. The two TE, two K, or two DEF move is a fairly common one in the WVFL, and one that I’ve never understood. And I never will!

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 7th

2011 KEEPERS Turner


IRON CITY POUNDERS

If you’ve ever needed a sure sign that fantasy football information is no longer a commodity but a utility, look no further than Andre Johnson going 6th overall with nary a batted eyelash. We all know the same things and we all have the same moves. Fantasy football has turned into NASCAR, basically.

The Pounders followed that one up with another receiver, Larry Fitzgerald, obviously enamored with me riding the WR-WR start to the title last year. Of course, I was in the 12 spot, which is a little different. Still, they managed to grab Addai and Forte next year, and I’d say except Addai’s annual injury, the Pounder backfield is probably on par with the Shruggz backfield.

The only down marks for the Pounders, really, is that there’s no way Vernon Davis catches another 13 touchdowns, and they have no depth on the bench whatsoever.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 3rd

2011 KEEPERS Johnson, Fitzgerald, Forte


BROOKLINE FINEST

After winning the title as Brookline’s Finest, then slogging through two terrible seasons as the Brookline Bucs, this team is now Brookline Finest, a name that sounds like the opening of a slogan. Brookline, Cleanest T-Stops in Town!

But 2010 is already a success for Skip Henry, because he gets to watch Mendenhall churn out runs for his team. And besides that and Matt Schaub constantly throwing the ball in the fourth quarter in vain comeback attempts, that’s all that Brookline will enjoy this season.

I mean…their #1 receiver, Michael Crabtree, was just yelled at in practice by Vernon Davis for being lazy and having a bad attitude. That’s like being yelled at by Glenn Beck for being paranoid and melodramatic.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 10th

2011 KEEPERS Mendenhall, 5 year deal


WHIZ-BANG GANG

The 1990 Denver Broncos went 5-11 after losing the previous Super Bowl by 45 points. In fairness, it’s hard to play football when you’re wondering the point of life is. The Whiz-Bang Gang would do well to study this cautionary tale after losing WVFL Bowl VII by 73 points.

The WBG were in a no-win spot with the #8 pick, so Aaron Rodgers is a pretty decent grab there. That’s where the compliments end. The WBG backfield consists of Ronnie Brown, who gets hurt every year, Beanie Wells, who isn’t good and is named Beanie, Clinton Portis, who died two years ago, Leon Washington, who is the 3rd down back on a terrible team, and Ahmad Bradshaw. Bradshaw is pretty good, actually.

Oh, and Welker is in his first year back from a procedure everybody says it takes two years to recover from.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 9th

2011 KEEPERS – Rodgers, Bradshaw


THE PEOPLE’S ELBOW

Nate’s team was automatically drafted by his iPhone, which means it won’t be as good as everybody hopes when the season finally starts. And like most Apple products, it came with a few bugs. Like drafting a second tight end and that tight end being New England’s fourth tight end and not the one everybody is talking about. Or the wrong bad Cardinals back. Or Mark Sanchez as a backup QB. Or Austin Collie, Indy’s 6th option, before other teams’ 1st or 2nd option.

This app is clearly not the Deep Blue of fantasy football.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 11th

2011 KEEPERS – Manning


HAWKS

The Stringfellow is superfluous, it seems. Also superfluous was the hype surrounding Ryan Mathews, who finds a second T superfluous for his surname. Mathews is a good back and San Diego is good team, but every year some guy shoots up draft boards solely because he’s a projected starter. It doesn’t always work out. (See: Slaton, Steve)

Of course, if the Hawks took Steven Jackson 10th and Mathews 15th, they would have the same backfield, so whatever. And they can always trade McNabb for a decent WR2, since there’s no chance Mike Sims-Walker lives up to anything.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 6th

2011 KEEPERS – Mathews


PURPLE SWIRLS

There’s just no way Miles Austin repeats last year, right? I mean, he just…can’t. And Jermichael Finley would have to score 15 TDs to match the enthusiasm people have for him.

That said, this is a pretty nice team, and stealing LeSean McCoy in the 4th round was a pretty slick move. Assuming McCoy is able to fit through the miniscule holes the Philly line struggles to pry open. Maybe he’ll just run wide all year.

And, now that I think about it, Carolina might only score five touchdowns all year, so DeAngelo should have some troubles. Justin Forsett is competing for carries on a terrible team that will never be running out the clock, Robert Meachem is a study in frustration, Jacoby Jones is the fourth option by now and I don’t know who Jermaine Gresham is, except that he’s Caulen’s second tight end.

Maybe I don’t like this team so much after all.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 5th

2011 KEEPERS – Brees, McCoy, Austin


LOWCOUNTRY ALL STARS

Nate and I twisted Webster’s arm for about a week to get him to return to the WVFL. We were like Steve Hutchison and Ryan Longwell flying down to Mississippi to cup Favre’s nuts. But in looking at the team he pulled together, I feel like I talked him into some real estate investment and the land was too sandy to build or farm on and now he’s been wiped out.

Going WR-WR in the 12/13 boomerang is hotter than hating Justin Bieber right now, and Moss and Wayne are solid…but then it got ugly in a hurry. Knowshon is hurt, Felix Jones is splitting carries and injury prone, Michael Bush is hurt, and Housh and Derrick Ward were both released.

But here’s the good news! It’s a keeper league now.

2010 REGULAR SEASON FINISH – 12th

2011 KEEPERS - None