Friday, December 30, 2005

Fantasy Football Keeper League Review/Preview: WR's & TE's

One of the high points of my fantasy football keeper league team, my wide receivers and tight ends:

ANQUAN BOLDIN: One of the best things that happened to me in my draft last year was Boldin's injury. Because of his preseason injury, he dropped in the draft in spite of the fact he'd had a phenomenal year the previous season.

While he does tend to get injured a lot, when he plays, he is golden. If you count Terrell Owens, then Boldin ranked 4th in average points per week (excluding weeks he didn't play). In overall points, he was 6th.

It also seems that whoever is playing QB for the Cardinals doesn't seem to matter to Boldin. He's put up good numbers with a lot of bad QB's and a few decent ones.

Needless to say, he will be with me for years to come.

T.J. HOUSHMANDZADEH: That may be the longest word I know how to spell, but he's worth it.

Housh is a solid number 2 wideout. He won't blow your doors off most weeks, but the nice thing about him is he doesn't give you too many bad weeks either (he had two weeks with under 50 receiving yards this year).

He's a keeper.

CHRIS CHAMBERS: Chambers reminds me of Isaac Bruce a few years ago. He is VERY feast or famine. When he's hot, he's as good as any in the game (week 13 against the Bills: 15 catches, 238 yards, 1 td). When he's cold, welllll you get the idea (week 11 against the Browns: 3 catches, 12 yards, 0 td's).

If Chambers could get consistent, he could easily be a top 5 WR. I suspect a lot of that has to do with the QB problems the Dolphins have had the last couple of years (I think the last decent QB they had was some guy named Marino).

Even with bad QB's, Chambers is a keeper, but you have to expect some inconsistency until the Dolphins reel in a good QB.

DEION BRANCH: Branch has a plus and a minus, and they are both Tom Brady. Branch is clearly Brady's favorite receiver (contrary to the commercial). However, Brady spreads the ball around so much that Branch never puts up great numbers.

Add in the fact that Branch seems a little injury prone (although he has been healthy all this year), and Branch seems expendable. That would be the wrong analysis.

Branch is fairly consistent. He only had 4 games this year with under 5 catches, and in one of those he had 92 yards and a td.

Branch is a spot starter who can contribute from the bench as needed, just don't stake your season to him. I'll keep him as long as he can put up ok numbers.

ROY WILLIAMS: Williams is an enigma. I have seen him play games where he looked as good as any WR in football. I have also seen games where he seems to disappear from the gameplan (is Roy even playing today?).

The Lions have some HUGE problems that need to be fixed. Contrary to what a lot of people think, I don't see Matt Millen as the problem. I see Millen as a symptom of the problem, which is William Clay Ford, the owner. If there's a bad decision to be made, Ford will make it. But since you can't fire the owner, then Millen must go.

Until (or is that if?) the Lions can get their front office straightened out, Williams will probably continue to produce subpar numbers, with an occasional great game.

If I see a great WR in the draft, I might try and trade Williams to get him. Otherwise, he'll just sit on my bench until I see some consistency.

DERRICK MASON: When I drafted Mason last year, he was great, consistently putting up good numbers with occasionally outstanding numbers. But that was with the Titans.

With the Ravens, he has been consistently mediocre. Ten times this year, Mason did not break 70 yards receiving. Plus he has 3 td's on the season.

Mason is getting too old to be riding the bench. If I pick up a decent WR in the draft, Mason will be the first guy I think about dropping.

ANTONIO GATES: Three years ago, I was watching a Chargers game at the end of the season. The commentators were yapping about how psyched Marty Schottenheimer was about this young TE. Watching the game, I agreed. Gates looked like he could be another Tony Gonzalez.

Last year, I drafted Gates. He would be a decent starter at WR. At TE, he is solid gold.

One of my opponents tried to trade me for Gates earlier this year. He offered me Randy McMichael and his first three draft picks next year. I countered with Eli Manning, Chad Johnson, and Randy McMichael. He turned me down, but THAT is how much Gates is worth.

Gates is a start-and-forget player. Since tight ends don't normally put up great numbers, even his occasional bad game is no biggie.

Gates stays until further notice, which could be many years from now.

MARCUS POLLARD: Pollard is at the end of his career. But I only need a second TE for when Gates is on a bye week, or gets hurt (which so far has been never), or gets suspended (once).

I probably won't look for a TE in the draft, since you can never tell how they'll do until they start playing. More likely, I'll replace Pollard with a free agent TE sometime next year.

ERIC JOHNSON: Johnson spent most of this year on the IR. Last year, he was a solid number 2 TE. With his injury history, I don't expect him to repeat last year's performance.

I will probably cut him after this year. Period.

SUMMARY: I have great depth at WR. While I do have to play "Which WR will produce the most this week?" sometimes, it is worth it.

At TE, I have practically no depth, but I don't need it with Gates. Gates is NOT replaceable.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Fantasy Football Keeper League Review/Preview: RB's

Today, I look at the running backs from my keeper league:

CLINTON PORTIS: Portis has been the cornerstone of my offense. While he has been the 7th best RB in the league, he is fairly consistent. He stays healthy and puts up decent numbers, with the occasional great outing.

Is there a downside to Portis? Not really. He's not LT or Shaun Alexander, but he's good enough. He could have more touchdowns (9 through 15 games), but that's nitpicking.

He is a solid keeper until further notice.

WILLIS MCGAHEE: Willis was my other starter for the majority of the season. He was also one of the most disappointing running backs I've ever had. Weeks 3-8 he was solid. Most of the rest of the season he was a bust.

Obviously, the Bills' revolving door at QB did not help McGahee. Hopefully, things will settle down in that area next year and McGahee will return to being a stud RB.

He is still worth keeping, but keep an eye on him. If the Bills change coaches next year, McGahee might become a spot starter, or a superstar.

MIKE ANDERSON: Shanahan shocked everyone when he named Anderson his starter in the preseason. I quickly grabbed Anderson on waivers.

I made the mistake of starting Anderson the first week, and he got me squat. I didn't start him again until week 11 (I was fed up with McGahee's lack of production), which was Anderson's best week of the year (113 yards and 3 td's). Of course, I made the mistake of starting him again in week 12 (31 yards and no td's).

In hindsight, Anderson has been somewhat more consistent than McGahee. However, when Anderson is cold, he is REALLY cold (there were 5 games when he did not top 34 yards rushing with 0 td's).

Barring injury or a Shanahan mood swing, Anderson should be back starting next year. I will keep him until his situation changes, mostly because I have the next man.

TATUM BELL: I drafted Bell last year, and he gave me some good games towards the end of the season. I never started him this year because the 3 good games he had were never with more than 14 carries.

Bell is a very talented back, and could end up being as good as Portis. Before he can be a regular starter, he has to prove to Shanahan that he can carry the ball 20-30 times without getting hurt. This Sunday, he will get his first start of the season, so we'll see how he does.

Until Bell proves he can NEVER be a starter, and I doubt that will happen, I keep him.

CHRIS PERRY: Perry was dropped by another team before week 5, and I grabbed him. Although he is not starter material yet, I think he has the potential to be.

I plan on sitting on him for awhile.

LADELL BETTS: I only picked him up as insurance for Portis. He has shown he's not a bad back when he gets the carries.

I can drop him anytime if I think he won't be Portis' backup, or if something better comes along.

SUMMARY: Going into this season, I thought my RB situation was good, bordering on spectacular. I thought I would be able to spot start Portis, McGahee, and Bell. When Anderson was named starter, I thought he would switch places with Bell in my 3-headed monster. I was wrong. Portis was the only regular starter. My other backs were average to occasionally good.

However, I still feel good about my RB's going into next year. My depth leaves me a lot of options should any of them underperform. With up-and-comers like Bell and Perry, I also have some potential for pleasant surprises in the future.

I must admit I'm tempted to trade up in the draft to get Reggie Bush. I'd have to give up a ton to get him. First, I want to see where he ends up in the NFL draft.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Fantasy Football Keeper League Review/Preview: QB's

Now that the fantasy football playoffs have ended, and I won my keeper league championship, I thought I would share my views about the players on my roster. Starting with the QB's:

DAUNTE CULPEPPER: After a dismal beginning, Daunte showed brief flashes of his abilities against the Saints and the Packers (although you have to consider it was the Saints and the Packers). Then he got hurt, and he has been riding my IR since then.

I still think he can put up big numbers when he plays within himself, instead of trying to do too much. That said, I am not sure WHERE he will be next year. There are a ton of rumors flying around about possible trades to Arizona or Miami. However, Zygi Wilf seems to like Culpepper, so I am not sure.

No matter where Culpepper ends up, it may be another year or two before we see the old Culpepper, since he'll be spending the better part of next year rehabbing his knee.

All things considered, he is still a keeper based on potential alone. Just don't expect great things next year.

KERRY COLLINS: I picked him up last year only because I didn't think Rich Gannon would finish the season. Plus I thought Collins would be a good fit with the Raiders. I was right, and I was wrong.

Gannon retired. Collins stepped in and looked good, bordering on great. Randy Moss came to the Raiders this year, and for the first three weeks, Collins looked like he could be "da man" for me. Unfortunately, he was awful against the Cowboys and the Chargers. After that, he was a spot starter for me, and just barely a good one at that.

Going forward, Collins will never be a great QB. Stopping Collins is easy: Blitz him.

However, he does have good games occasionally. If he ends up starting next year (with Oakland or elsewhere), he is worth keeping just for spot starts or if your starter gets hurt (see Culpepper above). If he ends up with a team that has him as a 2nd stringer, consider the health of the starter before dumping him (and whether you have a better option at QB).

Current rumors have the Eagles and the Jets interested in him. If he goes to the Jets, he's worth keeping. With the Eagles, he might be worth keeping, depending on whether you have a better option.

MARK BRUNELL: After I saw how bad Culpepper was playing in the first week, I started Collins in the second week. My only other backup was David Carr (see below), so I decided I needed another backup.

After Brunell's game against the Cowboys in week 2 (291 yards, 2 td's), I decided to give him a shot. When Collins had a bye in week 5, I went to Brunell, who did not disappoint (322 yards and 2 td's vs. Broncos).

After Collins disappointed me in week 6, I tried Brunell as my starter. He was either very hot (252 yards and 3 td's vs. 49ers) or very cold (65 yards and 1 int vs. Giants). For the rest of the season, I ended up playing musical QB's between Collins, Brunell, Carr (just one start), and Mike McMahon (also one start).

Going forward, Brunell is getting old. He may be good for one more season in Washington. Even then, he is a spot starter at best. I'll keep him with an eye towards getting rid of him.

DAVID CARR: I still think Carr has the potential to be a great QB. WHEN HE HAS PROTECTION! The Texans offensive line is wretched.

I only started him once this year. Collins was benched, Brunell had looked bad for several weeks, and my only other option was Mike McMahon ('nuff said). The sad thing was Carr was the right choice that week with 116 yards and 1 td vs. Titans.

My main hope for Carr is that Dan Reeves does NOT get the Texans job. Reeves can make great QB's look mediocre (see John Elway).

MIKE MCMAHON: I picked up McMahon on the off chance he might do well in the Eagles system. WRONG!

He had a decent performance vs. Giants (298 yards passing, 31 yards rushing, 1 pass td and 1 rush td), so I gave him a start against the Packers. 91 yards passing and 29 yards rushing later, with no td's, I realized he was as iffy as any of my QB's, maybe more so.

McMahon will be gone at the start of next season. Even if I have to start Earl Morrall.

SUMMARY: My QB's next year will probably be Culpepper, Carr, Brunell (if he is still starting), and maybe Collins (if he lands in a good situation).

This is assuming I don't draft a QB, which is a possibility, although I draft 10th in the first round. The QB pickings will be slim. Even if I get a decent QB, odds are he won't be more than a spot starter at the end of the 2006 season, if that. More likely I'd have to wait until 2007 to see any production.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Bridge to Scandal: Part 5

Sorry folks. No news today as the media continues to ignore the greatest Republican scandal of the year.

The fact Congress is closing shop for the year may delay further news reports about Don Young's conflict of interest.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Bridge to Scandal: Part 4

Good news! Another media source picked up the Don Young scandal story.

The Vermont Guardian ran the story December 23rd. Here's the link:
Vermont Guardian

If anyone else sees the story, please let me know, either by commenting here or by email.

Why I hate Alaska

Let me state that I have NOTHING against the people of Alaska, EXCEPT they sent Don Young to Congress. Young, the Chairman of the House Transportation Committee, is robbing the American taxpayers (except those in Alaska).

This coming fiscal year, the state of Alaska will have over a $1 billion budget SURPLUS. Yet, we are still sending more pork to Alaska than ANY other state.

From Citizens Against Government Waste, Alaska was the 2005 pork king, receiving over $645 million in pork. That's $984 per capita. Second place in per capita was D.C., with $464. In overall pork, Hawaii was second with over $573 million.

By comparison, New York got over $393 million and California got over $237 million. That means Alaska got more pork than New York and California COMBINED!

I am NOT against pork for Alaska. I AM against pork for ANY state. I was against it when Robert Byrd made West Virginia's highways the pride of the nation. I was against it when Zell Miller bragged about bringing fire trucks to my state, Georgia (why the heck can't we pay for our own fire trucks?).

From my perspective, Alaska is gorging itself at the public trough.

To the people of Alaska: Don Young is up for re-election in 2006. Until he is voted out of office, I will continue bashing Alaska. I will also look for ANY dirt I can find on Don Young.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Radioactive Mosques

From (

"The FBI has been covertly monitoring mosques and Muslim homes and businesses in U.S. cities for abnormal radiation levels since 2002, several government officials confirmed Friday.

...A Muslim advocacy group has said that the program is "misguided" and targets "the wrong people."

"It is a waste of time, it is a waste of resources and it is causing us to be concerned about our citizenship, our constitutional rights," Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, told CNN."

Maybe I missed the part of the Constitution where you are allowed to have radioactive materials?

Checking for radioactivity is completely unobtrusive, so there is no privacy violation either.

These kind of comments from Muslim groups are why people question the intentions of Muslims when it comes to terrorism.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Dennis Green to the Raiders?

I was over at (a great website by the way, although the popups are deadly) today, and caught a little story they had on Dennis Green (head coach of the Cardinals) wanting to leave Arizona:

"As we hear it, the thinking is that Green wants to hit the market in a year when there are too many seats and not enough qualified rear ends to fill them. We also have a feeling that Denny might have his eyeballs on the looming vacancy in Oakland, where Norv Turner most likely will be out the door." (

As a Raider fan, I hated the Norv Turner hire from the very beginning. Turner proved he couldn't coach when he was with the Redskins. With a virtual pro bowl team, the best Turner could do was squeak into the playoffs and immediately lose.

As for Dennis Green? I doubt he would win a Super Bowl with any team. However, I also think he can win games and go deep into the playoffs if you give him enough talent. He had Minnesota on the doorstep. He has clearly improved the Cardinals.

I am willing to give Green a shot with the Raiders. I'm just tired of losing baby.

Don Young's "bridge to scandal"

For those of you who don't know me, the one politician who gets under my skin like no other is Don Young, Republican representative from Alaska, who happens to be the Chairman of the House Transportation Committee. If you've heard of the "bridge to nowhere", Don Young is the guy you can thank for sucking up your tax dollars on that one.

I did three posts over at on Don Young and the scandal of that bridge. The links are below (in order):
Link 1
Link 2
Link 3

Suffice it to say, due to Don Young's son-in-law's involvement with an investment group which stands to benefit from the construction of the "bridge to nowhere", I consider Don Young's actions to show a clear conflict of interest. At the very least, Young should be censured, although that would be a slap on the wrist.

Personally, I hope the people of his district in Alaska recognize him for the crook he is and boot him this next election. He clearly is NOT representing the people. He is representing his own interests.


Welcome to my blog!

This is my place for my two cent opinions and my 25 cent beliefs.

As you can tell by the title, my favored topics of discussion revolve around politics and pro football, although I do go into other topics occasionally.

I encourage all feedback, good and bad.