Wagstaff Still Alive in McGee Survivor League

by Eddie Mayrose

I know, I know.  I’m the guy that loves the Fantasy Football wide receivers before the running backs in a Fantasy Football Draft so, as I’m hanging on by my fingernails in the McGee Survivor League because of a lack of production in the backfield.  There has been very little help from Ahmad Bradshaw and Jerome Harrison and, too make matters worse, Andre Johnson has an ankle problem and will be a game time decision.  Could be the end for Wagstaff’s Home Alone 2 squad.

RB Steven Jackson has a groin injury; his status won’t be determined until Sunday… Joseph Addai could be held out of Sunday’s contest because of a knee… A hamstring will likely keep Knowshon Moreno out of Sunday’s game with the Titans… Colts WR Austin Collie’s heel has healed enough for him to go on Sunday…Things are desperate in San Fran, and they’ll be using their version of the spread offense this week.  Look for a big game from WR Michael Crabtree… RB LaDainian Tomlinson seems to have emerged as the Jets’ primary option in the backfield.  Bad news for owners of Shonn Greene… The Ravens say RB Ray Rice will be a game time decision with a knee but it looks pretty certain that he’ll be in the lineup. Continue reading »

“Attention Fantasy Football Shoppers…”

By Eddie Mayrose

To most Fantasy Football Owners, the key to a successful season is a stable of capable ball-carriers.  Given the amount of touches they receive, it’s a logical concept to spend early round picks on running backs.  In most Fantasy Football Drafts, they dominate the first round; often taking up the first five slots.  However, there is significant, year-to-year turnover on the list of elite backs, something owners don’t always take into account and the reason bargain hunting could lead to a championship.

Last season, many Fantasy Football Players were all smiles after landing Matt Forte and Marion Barber in the first two rounds.  That was likely the only happiness enjoyed by those owners as both of the supposed studs failed to fire.  Yet, discount rushers like Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles delivered top shelf numbers at a much lower price.

Heading into the season, there are two running backs that, because of the circumstances of their teams, are newcomers to the “Elite List”.  There are two others, in similar situations, who are not as highly regarded but could become productive members of your championship squad at a fraction of the cost.   Just remember to shoot the old Professor a thank you note as you celebrate your title. Continue reading »

McGee Survivor League Loses Commissioner

It was once just a dream; merely a conversation over a family dinner. Until our Staten Island cousin and Horsefeathersnephew Terrence, took the reins and created a Fantasy Football giant known as the McGee Survivor League. We don’t know where we’d be without him but we’re about to find out as his Bayside Tigers went down in flames last week. Still alive heading into Monday Night Football, Terry was done in by one long pass from Donovan McNabb and the hideous Bears’ defense, which registered a fatal -10 points. “Should have played another D”, said Terry. “Jenny told me that nothing good comes from Chicago.” Dr. Pete barely survived his own pitiful showing but returns four playrs from their bye weeks. Waggie is still around, courtesy of Thomas Jones and his offensive line. Made it to November, “woo-hoo!”

Fantasy Football News and Notes

Falcons allowing 250 passing YDS PPG so play any and all New Orleans skill position players on your roster…Panthers‘ QB Jake Delhomme, already with 13 INT, returns to Arizona; where he threw five picks in last year’s playoffs… Jets’ RB Thomas Jones should see his carries increase significantly with Leon Washington out. While rookie Shonn Greene will get some touches, he can’t do a lot of what Washington did so, Jones’ll be the guy… RB Ahmad Bradshaw has told the Giants he can play through the pain of a broken bone in his foot. We’ll see… Vince Young takes over for Kerry Collins at QB for the winless Titans… Rams’ RB Steve Jackson, posting 100 YD games on an almost weekly basis, might actually find the end zone this week vs. Detroit…If you saw any of the Jets-Raiders game last week, you’ll play the Chargers’ DST as they host Oakland this weekend… Not buying into the Alex Smith renaissance just yet but he does have significantly better receivers now than when he was strating before… Ravens are at home, coming off a bye and truying to stop a three game losing streak this week. I’d think twice before starting Denver RB Knowshon Moreno against them… Seattle Rb Julius Jones missed practice on Wednesday due to personal reasons but returned Thursday and will play Sunday… The Chiefs suspended RB Larry Johnson for two weeks because whenever he opens his mouth, stupid things come out. Should be a bonus to Jamaal Charles, who’ll get the start… Vikes’ WR Bernard Berrian is nursing a sore hamstring and is questionable for Sunday at Green Bay… Lions wideout Calvin Johnson practiced on Thursday after missing the Lions’ last game before the bye. He was limited and is questionable for the Rams… Minnesota Wr Percy Harvin has battled migraines all year and missed practice on Thursday… Jericho Cotchery should return to the Jets this week after missing a game with a bad hamstring… Colts’ RB Donald Brown is doubtful for Sunday vs. San Francisco with a strained groin…Eagles’ RB Brian Westbrook will be a game time decision after suffering a concussion last week… Colts’ WR Reggie Wayne has been hampered by a strained groin but should go Sunday.

Fantasy Football Stars

- Dolphins’ RB Ricky Williams is coming off his best game of the season, culminating a three game hot streak that began when he and teammate Ronnie Brown ran all over the jets from Miami’s Wildcat formation. Look for more of the samwe this weekend, as the Jets will now try to stop the Wildcat without NT Kris Jenkins… The Seahawks are coming off their bye; having had two weeks to prepare for the Cowboys’ porous pass defense. Look for Matt Hasselbeck to turn in a big game this week vs. Dallas.

Fantasy Football Stiffs

- WR Greg Jennings hasn’t found the endzone since Week One and won’t exactly be facing soft competition on Sunday when the Vikings visit the Packers. That Aaron Rodgers has still performed well is an indication he’s become comfortable with his other receivers; more bad news for Jennings… After Alex Smith’s stellar relief appearance last week, QB Shaun Hill’s out of a job in San Francisco.

Fantasy Football Sleepers

- New Orleans’ TE Jeremy Shockey posted his first 100 YD game of the season last week and is due for another solid game vs. Atlanta. The Falcons have allowed quite a few TE’s to perform well, mailnly because they stretch their secondary too thin to cover WR’s. They’ll be in that mode again on Sunday, facing the best offense in the league… Durning the 49′ers bye week, WR Michael Crabtree and QB Alex Smith developed good chemistry while working with each other on the scout team. That chemistry blossomed on Sunday when Smith got his chance. Look for another big game from Crabtree.

Fantasy Football Slippers

- Eagles QB Donovan McNabb has been terrible the last two weeks, throwing for just one TD and actually losing to the Raiders. His luck won’t improve this week, either, as he’ll face a Giants’ defense that’s held six QB’s under 200 YDS… RB Marshawn Lynch has struggled since his return from suspension in large part due to Buffalo’s terrible pasing game. That won’t change this week as Lynch goes up against a Houston defense that has stuffed Cedric Benson and Frank Gore over its last two games.

McGee Survivor Fantasy Football League Loses Another Holmdel Franchise

After a one week reprieve, the Holmdel division of the McGee Survivor League suffered another casualty as affable,Horsefeathers4 young Edward saw his LeGarrete Blounts go down in flames. If you’re scoring at home, that’s the fourth of six from Old Mill Lane to bite the dust. Things look dicey on Long Island, this week, however, as Dr. Pete’s Samurai Shortbus must replace a number of starters on their bye week. Wagstaff rode the coattails of Thomas Jones to his best week of the season and might actually make it past the year’s halfway point. We’ll see.

Fantasy Football News and Notes

Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson says his ankle is fine and he’ll start Sunday vs. Pittsburgh… LaDainian Tomlinson, plagued by injuries all year, missed time this week because of the flu… Anquan Boldin’s ankle kept him out of practice this week but he’s expected to be in Arizona’s starting lineup… Bills’ RB Marshawn Lynch, who missed the season’s first two games due to suspension, may have his first big game against Carolina, whose run defense is terrible… Colts’ WR Anthony Gonzalez, out since the opener with a knee injury, is close to returning to practice… While Greg Jennings’ hip injury kept him out of practice on Thursday, he will play on Sunday according to Packer coach Mike McCarthy… The Broncos refuse to mess with success and will continue to have Correll Buckhalter and Knowshon Moreno split carries; disappointing Fantasy owners of both players… Eagles’ WR Kevin Curtis will not play Monday vs. Washington… Jets’ WR Braylon Edwards has been bothered by a sore quad all week but is expected to play… Clinton Portis is dealing with multiple leg problems including knee, calf, ankle and plantar fascitis but will play Monday.

Fantasy Football Star

- Things line up extremely well for Laurence Maroney this week as the Patriots fly to London to face the Bucs. An injured Sammy Morris did not make the trip, leaving Maroney as the Pats’ go-to back, Tampa Bay’s run defense is one of the league’s weakest and he’s coming off a 123 yard effort last week.

Fantasy Football Stiff

- If you were waiting for Pittsburgh RB Willie Parker to return to your lineup, you won’t be happy to read this. Head Coach Mike Tomlin announced this week that Rashard Mandenhall, successful during Parker’s absence, will get the bulk of the work in the backfield.

Fantasy Football Sleeper

- Those Fantasy Football wners who drafted 49′ers WR Michael Crabtree may actually get some return on their investment this week. He’ll be used a s a slot receiver which may give him a few opportunities for yards after the catch. He’s an explosive player who should bump Josh Morgan from the starting lineup before long.

Fantasy Football Slipper

- Bad enough that the Jets have had their vaunted defense slapped around over the last few weeks but now they must continue without the services of NT Kris Jenkins, thought by many to be the unit’s best player. He’s lost for the season to a knee injury; severely jeopardizing the Jets’ ability to stop the run while sending waves of pressure at the QB.

by Professor Wagstaff

Well, here we are.  The first NFL training camp opens on Saturday in Buffalo, Horsefeathersperhaps because the Bills can’t wait to immerse themselves in the glow and warmth of newly acquired Terrell Owens.  Whatever the reason, the first whistle will also serve to alert Fantasy Owners that their drafts are just a few weeks away.  In most of those drafts, running backs will dominate most of the first two rounds so; the position seems as good a spot as any to start our 2009 previews.

Fantasy Football Running Backs

Studs

Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson carried the ball 363 times last year.  363!  The NFL’s leading rusher probably won’t carry the same load this season but will still be the first pick in your draft… Michael Turner emerged from LT’s shadow in San Diego and became a superstar in Atlanta.  He ran for 220 YDS on Opening Day and never looked back. Ironically, he’ll likely go before Tomlinson in most Fantasy drafts…  It took a year but DeAngelo Williams finally showed the panthers the talent they expected when they drafted him.  His 1,500 YDS were a team record and 20 TD boosted him to an elite Fantasy ranking…  Jaguars’ star Maurice Jones Drew ran for less YDS than anyone in this group but made up for it with better than 500 YDS receiving.  Look for his rushing total to increase in ’09 as he’ll no longer be splitting time with the departed Fred Taylor… Not a bad rookie year for Matt Forte, who quickly became the focal point of the Bears’ offense.  The addition of Jay Cutler won’t hurt him at all since he’s probably Chicago’s best receiver, as well.

Stars

Talk to Fantasy owners that drafted Marion Barber in the first or second round in ‘08 and they’ll tell you they were somewhat disappointed.  Slowed in the final four games by a toe injury, Barber’s production fell off.  Healthy now, don’t look past the fact that he still managed 1,300 total YDS and 10 TD… Frank Gore, slowed in the latter part of the season by a concussion, had 1,500 total YDS and 8 TD.  A new O Coordinator with a reputation for running the ball will give the 49’ers star a huge boost…  Houston’s Steve Slaton went undrafted in many leagues last year (including mine) and was happily grabbed as a FA early on.  He’ll be the starter out of the gate this year so, expect bigger numbers… Brian Westbrook suffered through a litany of injuries last season yet, the Eagles star still had 14 TD and 1,300 YDS.  He’s had off season surgery on his ankle and knee so, be careful but the risk reward for drafting him is huge.

Sleepers

How does one of the greatest RB in the history of the game end up on a Fantasy sleeper list?  When he’s coming off an injury riddled season and he’s over 30, that’s when.  San Diego’s LaDainian Tomlinson is Wagstaff’s pick for steal of the draft in ’09 as he’ll probably go late second or early third round in a year where he’ll show everyone how great he is when healthy… Injuries and the emergence of LeRon McLain made for a tough rookie year for the Ravens’ Ray Rice.  However, McLain will be moved to fullback while Rice will split time with Willis McGahee…  We’re going out on a limb here with Arizona’s Beanie Wells, as he’s slated to split time with Tim Hightower.  The thought, however, is that Wells has more breakaway potential; enough to give him the bulk of the carries and some late round value… Given the history, how can you not want a Denver RB?  Knowshon Moreno will quickly become the Broncos’ go to guy, especially as they gently work Kyle Orton into the offense.

Slippers

A decent sleeper pick in ’08, LenDale White became nothing more than a short yardage specialist for the Titans as the season wore on with Chris Johnson taking the reins.  Don’t get sucked in by his TD total… Age and the Browns’ ineptitude have conspired to rob Jamal Lewis of his Fantasy value.  His totals last year were his lowest in four years and the Browns don’t look like they’ve worked out too many of their problems…, Willis McGahee seems to have hit the infamous RB wall; and the Ravens apparently think so, too.  They’re looking to work Ray Rice into the rotation… The Colts’ Joseph Addai was a first rounder in most Fantasy leagues last year but struggled mightily.  So much so, that Indy used its first pick on Donald Brown, who will definitely take touches from Addai.

Stiffs

  Larry Johnson has asked the Chiefs for a trade and will lose touches to Jamaal Charles and Kolby Smith… In Tampa Bay, Earnest Graham is returning from an ankle injury that cost him the last five weeks of an already disappointing season while battling the newly signed Derrick Ward for playing time… In Baltimore, LeRon McLain became a viable option when Willis McGahee went down.  However, he’s being moved to FB, making him the Ravens’ third option at best.

Fantasy Football Picks: Wagstaff’s Top 20 Running Backs

  1. Adrian Peterson                            
  2. DeAngelo Williams                    
  3.  Matt Forte                                         
  4. Michael Turner                             
  5. Maurice Jones Drew                  
  6. Steve Slaton                                    
  7. LaDainian Tomlinson               
  8. Brian Westbrook                         
  9. Marion Barber                              
  10. Frank Gore                                     
  11. Steven Jackson
  12. Clinton Portis   
  13. Brandon Jacobs   
  14. Knowshon Moreno
  15. Thomas Jones
  16. Marshawn Lynch
  17. Ryan Grant
  18. Joseph Addai
  19. Kevin Smith
  20. Willie Parker                                    
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