Wagstaff and Son Reach Final Four of Survivor League

by Eddie Mayrose

After ten weeks, the good professor and his general manager, son Timothy, have outlasted ten family members and positioned themselves in the final four of the McGee Survivor League.  Riding the tails of the Johnson brothers, their two superstar wide receivers Andre and Calvin, Waggie and Tim have seen their Fantasy Football team, Home Alone 2, dodge every bullet thrown its way.  Now, with two brothers and a cousin standing as the only obstacles between him and the grand prize, Tim is feeling his oats.  ” I talked dad out of Carson Palmer last week and Joe Flacco came through.  This week, it’s Michael Crabtree in for Mike Williams. If we win again, dad’s paying for the Harry Potter movie.”  We’ll see, Tim. Continue reading »

Running Backs?  What Running Backs?

by Eddie Mayrose

Waggie and his partner, son Timothy, survived another week in the McGee Survivor League, actually turning in the highest total for the week, despite the gaping hole in their backfield that has been a problem all season.  Even their mainstay, Ahmad Bradshaw of the Giants, has been a problem. Even though he’s been piling up yardage, Brandon Jacobs gets all of the touches inside the 10 yard line.  Things are looking up, however, as the Professor and son woke up early on Tuesday and managed to beat the sleepy heads in their league to Chris Ivory of the Saints.  Fresh off a 150 yard game and likely to get most of the work with Pierre Thomas out, he’s a great acquisition for a team facing the joint bye weeks of Andre and Calvin Johnson.  It’ll be touch and go this weekend for Home Alone 2 but, if they survive, things are looking up the rest of the way.

Fantasy Football Studs

Love Philip Rivers this week in his matchup with the Patriots.  For that matter, Tom Brady deserves a stud ranking also as this game should be a shootout.  Rivers should feast on the Pats’ soft pass defense while Brady seems much more comfortable with Deion Branch than he did with Randy Moss. Continue reading »

by Professor Wagstaff

Wagstaff Still Alive (Barely)

The first week of the McGee Survivor League went almost Horsefeathers4precisely as the Professor expected as both girls, Team Minnesota and S.F. Col’s Guys finished atop the point standings by wide margins. The only prediction that went awry was that I actually survived the first week; much to my surprise. I did, however, manage to finish in the bottom three as my own “Wide Receivers before Running Backs” draft strategy blew up in my face. Could someone in Houston please inform Andre Johnson that the season has actually started? We said good bye to Team Lunz, as our nephew and cousin, Jim, failed to get out of the starting blocks. One down, twelve to go.

No Defense for the Defense

It was an interesting Week 1 as far as DST’s were concerned. No sooner than four teams considered to have solid defenses lost one of their top players for a large chunk, if not all, of the season. Troy Palumalo (Steelers) and Jerod Mayo (Patriots) could each be out for as long as six weeks with knee injuries while Brian Urlacher (Bears/wrist) and Joe Blow (Jaguars/knee) have been lost for the season. Keep them in mind as you set your lineup this weekend.

* * * * *

Fantasy Football Stars

Based on how well the Bucs ran the ball against the Cowboys last weekend, RB Brandon Jacobs should have a big night in Dallas; especially with Eli Manning still adjusting to life without Plaxico Burress… Atlanta’s RB Michael Turner should start to justify that #2 pick you spent to get him with a big game against a weak Panthers’ D Line… Speaking of weak lines, the Rams may own the worst in the league on each side of the ball. That’s why we love Skins’ RB Clinton Portis to run all over them and the Redskins’ DST to completely dominate.

Fantasy Football Stiffs

Could things be worse for QB Jay Cutler? His Chicago debut was marred by four INT in a loss to Green Bay, and now he faces the Super Bowl champs in the home opener. If the Steelers shut down the run, (when don’t they?), Cutler could be good for another couple of picks… If Jake Delhomme doesn’t have a solid first half against Atlanta, the Panthers’ QB may find himself on the bench. Based on their performance vs. Miami, the Falcons don’t figure to allow DeAngelo Williams a lot of freedom, putting even more pressure on Delhomme to come up big… If you hadn’t figured they’d be here based on our Stars report, we give you the Rams’ DST… A solid Vikings’ defense and the Lions propensity for falling behind make RB Kevin Smith a huge risk this week.

Fantasy Football Sleepers

Last year, the Cardinals allowed more TD passes than they threw and were a disaster on the road. That’s why the Professor moved QB David Garrard into his starting lineup this week… With the Jets shooting their mouths off this week, you have to figure they’ll focus a lot of their attention on New England’s Randy Moss; which should allow WR Wes Welker to have a big game… The Vikings should have no trouble throwing the ball against the Lions, who allowed 6 TD passes vs. Drew Brees in New Orleans last week. Look for TE Visanthe Shiancoe to reel in a TD from Brett Favre among his 8 REC… All of a sudden, the Ravens seem to have taken the shackles off of QB Joe Flacco, who threw for 300 YDS last Sunday. He’ll have another big game vs. San Diego…

Fantasy Football Slippers-

Bears’ RB Matt Forte will struggle vs. the Steelers; especially if Jay Cutler turns in another stinker… Have to be worried about Chargers’ QB Philip Rivers. He may be without LaDainian Tomlinson and two of his offensive linemen with the vaunted Ravens’ defense coming to town… I know you used a pretty high pick on Rams’ RB Stephen Jackson but it may be time to move him. The Rams look terrible, especially the O Line, and Jackson will struggle all year… Did you pick up Jets’ QB Mark Sanchez this week? Good. Now, wait at least another week to put him in your lineup as Pats’ coach Bill Bellichick will make life difficult for the rookie on Sunday.

by Professor Wagstaff

So, here we are. Week 1 for Fantasy Football Owners and the inaugural season for the members of The McGeeHorsefeathers4 Survivor League, a pressure cooker of a Fantasy Football League made up of Nieces, Nephews, In-Laws and Uncles; all vying for the bragging rights that will turn the family Christmas party into their very own championship locker room. In a brutal format that does not allow for trades or free agent pickups, the lowest scoring team of the fourteen that make up the league will be eliminated each week until only one is left standing. Or, simply put, don’t screw up your Fantasy Football Draft because you could be one and done. Advice that the good Professor should have followed in Round 6 when I got caught watching the Miami-Florida State game. I didn’t realize I was on the clock until after the computer auto picked Cincy TE Chase Coffman. Now, Wagstaff readers know I like the Bengals’ rookie but not that much. He was in my queue for a last round pick until he became my sixth. I spent the rest of the draft one player short as I scrambled to cover the mistake. It probably won’t matter anyway because, with two girls in the league, the guys don’t have a chance. The Fantasy Gods seem to love women and these two know what they’re doing; a double whammy. So, I’ll keep my fingers crossed that Beanie Wells can get something done and hope that Reggie Bush, the player Coffman should have been, doesn’t light it up in New Orleans. Good luck to all.

Fantasy Football Studs

Have to love San Diego’s Philip Rivers against any divisional foe but especially the Raiders. With Tomlinson and Gates healthy, Rivers has too many weapons for the defenseless Raiders to handle… Think Carson Palmer is anxious to get back on the field for the Bengals? He couldn’t ask for a weaker secondary to face than Denver’s. Chris Henry had a great preseason, the former Chad Johnson seems motivated and Wagstaff has to hope that Chase Coffman has a big year… Pity the poor Lions, trying to rebuild and having to face Drew Brees on opening day. Look for 300+ YDS and 3 TD from the Saints’ QB.

Fantasy Football Stars

Love the Texans’ and Saints’ DST as both will face rookie QBs. Four sacks each and a few INTs should be easy pickins’… With Terrell Owens in Buffalo, look for Dallas QB Tony Romo to rely heavily on TE Jason Witten in the season opener against a rebuilding Bucs’ squad with a lot of defensive problems…

Fantasy Football Sleepers

With a rookie QB facing a strong pass rush, the Jets’ will probably gear their passing game to a short, quick hitting style. Great news for owners of TE Dustin Keller… The Rams are undergoing a complete rebuild, especially on their D Line, which could make for a big afternoon for Seattle’s Julius Jones on Sunday… The Bills fired their O Coordinator during the preseason, cut a starting OT and will open vs. New England with three rookies on the O Line. Something tells me the Patriots D is licking its chops.

Fantasy Football Slippers

Injuries to QBs Kyle Orton and Chris Simms and the uncertain status of WR Brandon Marshall will result in a tough debut for Denver RB Knowshon Moreno, who may not even get the lion’s share of the carries… Not that Eli Manning isn’t a Wagstaff favorite, he is, but the Giants’ game plan this week will probably not be well suited for a big game from the QB… Cards’ WR Anquan Boldin has the Professor a little nervous. He’s got a bad hammy, is ticked about his contract and didn’t have a good preseason.

Fantasy Football Stiffs

You can blame Eric Mangini if you’re the owner of whoever starts at QB for the Browns this week. With Cleveland facing one of the top Defenses in the league, it was no time to let Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson twist in the wind. One of them will pay the price on Sunday… Still think that Matt Cassel’s success was a product of the talent surrounding him last year. He heads into the season with a trained knee that limits his mobility against the Baltimore Ravens; not a recipe for success… The Colts’ D will struggle this week vs. the Jags, especially with S Ed Sanders hobbled.

They’re the forgotten men; the filler picks at the end of any Fantasy Football Draft.  Tight Ends, Kickers and Defenses Horsefeathers4make up most of the final rounds with few exceptions.  The three or four elite TE on your draft list warrant mid round selections but, for the most part, its hard to pass on a productive WR or RB just to fill a required roster spot.  Defense/Special Teams is next in the pecking order with Kickers bringing up the rear.  Too many intangible factors determine the success or failure of these units to even consider taking any in the middle of the draft.  Don’t think so?  Ask anyone that drafted the highly rated Chargers last year before Shawn Merriman went down for the season.

Funny thing, though, championships are invariably won by the Fantasy Football Owner that pulls the winning ticket out of the hat: the kicker that becomes automatic from beyond fifty yards for an entire season, the tight end who suddenly finds himself with an aging QB coming out of retirement or the defense with the cornerback that starts returning every INT for six.  So, in order to put you in the best position to grab some of that good luck, take a look at the Wagstaff rankings.

Fantasy Draft Preview: Tight End

Studs

Tony Gonzalez was the Falcons’ biggest off season acquisiton and could be the last piece of the offensive puzzle in Atlanta.  He may not match the 96 REC and 10 TD he posted last year but the presence of Michael Turner and Roddy White should open things up enough for Gonzalez to remain at the top of the list… With the departure of Terrell Owens, Jason Witten becomes Tony Romo’s primary option in Dallas.

Stars

Dallas Clark sits on top of a lot of TE lists but not this one.  He’s too much of a possession receiver to bust into the upper echelon and doesn’t catch enough TD.  However, Peyton Manning makes him a valuable pick… Antonio Gates may be the best athlete at the position but is coming off an unproductive season due to injury.  The return of his own health as well as a productive La Dainian Tomlinson, should boost his stats back to their previous levels.

Sleepers

The Jets’ Dustin Keller had a stretch last year as Brett Favre’s favorite target before disappearing over the last month.  That probably won’t happen this year, as the Jets scale down their offense to accomodate rookie QB Mark Sanchez… Chase Coffman won’t even appear in some Fantasy Football rankings.  However, the Bengals’ rookie left Missouri as the all time receptions leader for TE.  If he wins the starting job in Cincy, expect a strong season.

Slippers

Denver’s Tony Scheffler registered just 3 TD last season with Jay Cutler under center.  Doesn’t seem like stardom is in the offing with Kyle Orton aboard… An uncertain QB situation in Oakland in addition to the Raiders’ home run passing philosophy make it difficult to foresee Zach Miller getting many touches

FANTASY FOOTBALL PICKS

Professor Wagstaff’s Top 12 Fantasy Tight Ends

  1. Tony Gonzalez
  2. Jason Witten
  3. Dustin Keller
  4. Dallas Clark
  5. Antonio Gates
  6. Chris Cooley
  7. Kellen Winslow
  8. Visante Shiancoe
  9. Owen Daniels
  10. John Carlson
  11. Heath Miller
  12. Chase Coffman

Professor Wagstaff’s Top 12 Fantasy Kickers

  1. Stephen Gostkowski
  2. Rob Bironas
  3. Neil Rackers
  4. Adam Vinatieri
  5. Mason Crosby
  6. Jason Elam
  7. Ryan Longwell
  8. Robbie Gould
  9. David Akers
  10. Nate Keading
  11. Matt Bryant
  12. Kris Brown

Professor Wagstaff’s Top 12 Fantasy Defense/Special Teams

  1. Vikings
  2. Giants
  3. Steelers
  4. Titans
  5. Jets
  6. Chargers
  7. Ravens
  8. Cowboys
  9. Eagles
  10. Patriots
  11. Dolphins
  12. Colts
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