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Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Pickups Week 13

November 27, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

For me patients is always the name of the game and for the 7th season in a row it is paying huge dividends.  My starting running backs in a week #1 were Ben Tate and Trent Richardson with Ray Rice as the back-up.  So you can imagine that the season started off on the wrong foot considering where those three are today.  However I enter the final week of our regular season powered by the likes of Justin Forsett and Josh Gordon.

Sitting, waiting, and not panicking has turned my subpar team into playoff juggernaut that will not only give me bragging rights 2 years in a row but also make my pockets a little fatter in the process.  With all that being said I am also kind of sad that this season is coming to an end.  Fantasy Basketball does just enough to get me to summer when I can start planning for next season.  Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read this blog of the last three months, sorry to those who didn’t succeed with my advice and your welcome for those of you who are in a better place because of me.  Without further ado, let’s see what this week has in store.  This blog is coming a little late due to all the early games and my holiday prep, so my apologies ahead of time.

Quarterback:

Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins- Not many people had Tannehill on their list for draft day and it appears that even after an amazing fantasy season he is still flying under the radar.  Tannehill is 58% owned as his stock has been slowly rising this season.  Who would have picked Tennehill to finish the season a top 10 QB ahead of names like Stafford, Newton, and Ryan.  You shouldn’t need any stats for this guy, the bottom line is that he is putting fantasy points on the board.  At #8 and healthy he should be starting for your team if your starters are not named Brady, Manning, or Brees.

Kyle Orton, Buffalo Bills- After a down week vs Miami, Orton bounced backed with a dominate performance against the helpless Jets.  With his weapons getting healthy, look to Orton to score more than the 10pts he is projected.  Robert Woods has stepped up to be a legitimate threat and Fred Jackson seems to be back from his injury scoring a TD last week.  The emergence of Dixon as serviceable compliment to Jackson is going to give defenses a lot to think about.  Orton is a slinger and looks like there are a few more gun fights on the schedule.  If you are really hurting for some help at QB, Orton will serve you well.

Zack Mettenberger, Tennessee Titans- At the start of the year a Titan’s QB was picked to have a breakout season but Mettenberger wasn’t his name.  Titan fans finally have something to be excited about as Metterberger (he needs a nickname) has thrown 7 TD’s in 4 games.  This is your wild card for the week but Mettenberger has a number of decent receivers and last week showed some real chemistry with Delenie Walker.  Playoffs or not, Mettenberger is probably not going to be getting an rest to close out the season as the Titans are going to want him to get as much experience as possible.

Running Back:

Daniel Herron, Indianapolis Colts- When Bradshaw went down I expected Richardson to finally show us what he could do but the Colts let us know at the last second how much they trust Richardson.  Herron was announced as the starter informing all of us that Richardson is not the guy in Indy.  It is hard to not get excited about a guy who totaled 96 yards on 17 touches in his first week as a starter.  Starting running backs in high powered offenses are often times a safe bet as they have the best chance to score points.  Herron is a strong #2 starter or flex in all leagues.

Tre Mason, St Louis Rams- Most experts are calling Mason a strong flex option, however I would argue that with the shallow depth at RB he is a must start #2 for most teams.  Averaging over 90 yards that last 3 games and dominating the carries, Mason is probably the most reliable options left on the board.  The Rams are not going to make the playoffs but they will have an opportunity to be a spoiler in the NFC West and Mason probably won’t be resting.

Latavius Murray, Oakland Raiders- Murray literally broke out last week against the Chiefs.  We know nothing about Murray at this point but you have to like what you saw out of his limited work.  He did suffer a concussion so his status for this week is up in the air but if he is ready to go he should be on your team.  Let’s face it, the Raiders have nothing to lose so it’s a good time to let the young guys get some real snaps in to get prepared for next season.  The Raiders are going to give Murray a shot and I am thinking you should too.

Wide Receiver:

Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins- Always a difficult positon to predict, Odell Beckham has shown us that if we predict right it could change the face of your team.  Landry is the obvious #2 in Miami playing for the #8 fantasy QB this season.  24 catches for over 200 yards and 4 TD’s in 4 games shows that this isn’t a fluke.  He is a perfect complement to Mike Wallace giving Tannehill a tandem of receivers to torcher defenses with.  With the running game up in the air they are going to be relying on the passing game to keep them near the top of the division and drive them into the playoffs.

Kenny Stills, New Orleans Saints- Everyone knows the Saints are a pass first team and Brees is still an elite QB.  Outside of Jimmy Graham, Brees has yet to show us who is “go to “receiver really is.  It seems like it’s a new guy every week.  Last week Stills caught 9 passes for almost 100 yards and the passes will keep on coming.  Even with a losing record the Saints are still in the hunt for the playoffs which means they are going to need everyone on offense to step up.  I will tell you that I am taking a chance on Stills this week.

Robert Woods, Buffalo Bills- Woods is quietly moving up the fantasy watch board.  Watkins and Jackson get the most credit for making the Buffalo offense go but time and time again Woods has shown that he is worthy of fantasy consideration.  9 catches on 11 targets for 118 and a TD.  What most people don’t know is that he has the potential to do that every week.  Again with defenses firmly focused on Jackson and Watkins, Orton will be looking at Woods.

Tight End:

Tim Wright, New England Patriots- You just never know what you will get with the Patriots so Wright is definitely a gamble.  The good news is that so are all the other TE’s on the waiver wire.  If you are going to gamble, why go all in on a guy who plays for a QB who threw him 2 TD’s lasts week.  If you pick up Wright you are doing it because you believe in Brady and there is nothing wrong with that.

Brent Celek, Philadelphia Eagles- The same logic for Wright can be applied to Celek as well.  For the second time in 3 weeks Celek has caught at least 5 passes which means he isn’t dead.  Like New England the Philly offense doesn’t care who catches passes, just that the passes are caught.  At any given week it can be any given player.  Sticking with the theme of gambling, why not go with a guy who is in an offense of will always try to score.

Jermaine Gresham, Cincinnati Bengals- Another non-reliable TE equals another gamble.  Just like the previous guys on this list, you picking the system and not the player.  Gresham has been in Cincy for quite a while and knows Dalton well.  He has not done much this season but he has had a few moments.  Dalton looks to be back on top of his game with the return of a healthy Green and Bernard which will either limit or increase Gresham involvement in the offense.  It’s hard to put money any TE this week but Gresham should be good for 3-4 pts which, at this point is all you can ask for

 

NFL Week 12 Recap and Week 13 Predictions

November 27, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

  • I am not one to be a fan of most of the shenignans and “fluff” that happens in the NFL but I was quite amused by Richard Sherman and Doug Baldwin’s performance’s the other day. If you haven’t watched the conference it’s worth it. Just search “Richard Sherman and Doug Baldwin cut-out” and you’ll find what you’re looking for. Sherman and Baldwin decided it was best to give the NFL what they wanted. You want us to be mandated to talk to the media? Okay we will do just that. Sherman and Baldwin then proceeded to discuss their current endorsement contracts combined with the ever growing and glaring hypocrisy of the league. Part of this was anger from the two men at the ludicrous fine against teammate Marshawn Lynch for not speaking to the media ($100,000).
  • Sherman continually lashed out at the leagues double standards about talking to the media and preaching player safety but yet continuing to have some teams play two times within 5 days. Sherman’s antics were funny with the card board cut out of Baldwin but they increased the glaring double black eyes that the league had this season due to off the field issues involving Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson. Sherman poked fun at a league where if you are caught wearing the popular Beats by Dre’ headphones at the stadium, you are fined $10,000 for wearing unauthorized equipment by the league. A league that has set in stone rules about apparel had no set plan in place for criminal or off the field antics similar to Rice or Peterson?
  • Don’t give me that bull that there wasn’t a “precedent” for those actions. It pains me to say this but domestic violence is way, way too prevalent and common place in today’s society and in the NFL. You are telling me this never crossed anyone’s mind about possible punishment? Oh but some suit making 7 figures a year sure as hell notices when a player wears pink outside the month of October and levies a 10K fine for that with 48 business hours. Lynch was fined an astronomical $100,000 for not talking to the media last week and Sherman will most face the same penalty. Why? Because NFL, that’s why. The league needs to stop with antics of enforcing the smaller rules when they can’t even handle the major issues.
  • How about Legarrette Blount everyone? Quits on the Steelers, arguably signs with a better team and better chance, scores 2 touchdowns and has a great re-debut for the Patriots? Yet another shining example of talent will always outweigh any on or off the field issues. I mean he was literally cut and signed within 24 hours of his release. But hey, the NFL has long been about “winning above anything else”. That’s why you see coaches terminated within 2 years of signing huge deals. That’s why you see quarterbacks being pulled quicker and quicker in today’s league. The league is not about setting examples of great employee conduct or morale. It’s all about “what have you done for me lately” and “what can you do for me now?” The immediate signings of Blount (Patriots) and Ben Tate (Vikings) will now, more than ever, show other players that these antics are okay. I expect a full slew of more quitting and diva antics once teams miss the playoffs and or fail in their bid for a Superbowl.

Recap from Week 12:

Bold Prediction from Week 12: Giants over the Cowboys. – WRONG – UGH so close! I predicted that Eli Manning would have a huge bounce back game and he did…sort of. In the end the Cowboys got the in.

Guaranteed Lock from Week 12: Broncos over the Dolphins. – RIGHT – Sheeesh…..could you have made this any closer Denver? Thanks for bailing me out.

Picks for Week 13:

Bold Prediction for Week 13: Falcons over the Cardinals. Look, I know first-hand that the NFC South is the worst division in probably the history of the NFL. But, they all at least know what’s at stake. Every team is still in the hunt for the division title and even with a poor performance against the Browns at home last week, I like them to rebound this week and upset Arizona.

Guaranteed Lock for Week 13: Eagles over the Cowboys. Mark Sanchez will not let the “Butt Fumble” game define his Thursday NFL career. Huge game for the Sanchise and Eagles come out on top. 

I kept it short and sweet for you guys this week so you’d have more room for turkey! Have a safe holiday and travels.  

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NFL 2014-15 Season Q3 Analysis

November 26, 2014 By: Category: NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

I want to start by wishing everyone at Camelclutchblog.com, and all my readers a Happy Thanksgiving weekend. I hope that everyone has a wonderful time with their families and friends, including their four legged ones. Be careful traveling, and if you decide to go shopping on Black Friday, please be safe. There are enough nutcases out there, so don’t get into a fight over a TV. It’s not worth it.

In speaking of Thanksgiving, the NFL 2014-15 season has just 5 more weeks to go. In horse racing terms, the 32 teams have hit the top of the stretch. It’s after Thanksgiving, when the proverbial whips start to appear, and we fans see which teams are real playoff contenders or pretenders. As four weeks have passed, some teams have put themselves in a position for a playoff push, while others took steps backwards. Of course, there were teams that were never in contention, and will wind up finishing up the track. Many reasons why include drama and ineptitude.

In this blog, I will be discussing the events of the third quarter of the 2014-15 NFL Season. I will delve into the playoff front runners. I will be looking at teams fighting for wild card spots. I also will be discussing some crazy off field issues as well.

Again, I will be using the “Thumbs Up” and ” Thumbs Down” literary device. I hope my readers will enjoy the blog. Without further ado, here is my analysis of the third quarter of the 2014-15 NFL Season.

THUMBS UP:

The Baltimore Ravens:

Watch out for the Baltimore Ravens. The team has been on a roll. They’ve been on a hot winning streak lately. They’re on the outside looking in, as the 7th seed. The team has a pretty favorable schedule, and should they qualify for the playoffs, they won’t be an easy foe. Former North Carolina Panthers WR Steve Smith has been lights out. After a shaky start to the NFL season, QB Joe Flacco is starting to adapt to offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak’s system. Needless to say, the Baltimore Ravens have a very good defense, led by Terrell Suggs.

The Green Bay Packers:

What can you say about MVP candidate Aaron Rodgers that hasn’t been said? He has been awesome. Before last Sunday’s game at Lambeau Field against the Vikings, Rodgers and the offense put up 50 plus points a game against the last two opponents. LB Clay Matthews has been terrific playing both inside and outside linebacker. I realize the team has some questions on defense, but so far, Dom Capers, Packers Defensive Coordinator has been doing a great job.

This Sunday’s tilt on November 30th against the AFC East leading juggernaut New England Patriots should be an awesome game. I’m very excited to see how Coach Bill Belichick game plans against Aaron Rodgers and that high powered offense. I wonder if Packers WR Jordy Nelson is going to be covered by Darelle Revis. I can’t wait to see what Packers Coach Mike McCarthy comes up with to try to out coach Belichick. Of course, can the Packers defense stop the Patriots offense led by Tom Brady?

The Arizona Cardinals:

I remember the days when this team was a joke. Well, not anymore. Over the years, they started getting talent and started to improve. The Cardinals, under QB Kurt Warner, made it to SB43 and gave my Steelers a run for their money.

Now, under (ironically) former Steelers Offensive Coordinator Bruce Arians, who is now the Cardinals Head Coach (my pick for Coach of the Year) , the Cardinals are 9-2, and leading the NFC West. Now that QB Carson Palmer is out for the season due to his ACL injury, it remains to be seen how far QB Drew Stanton can take them.

Nevertheless, this is a good sign for a franchise that was 5-11 when Arians took over in 2012. They were 10-6 last year and missed the playoffs. Barring a collapse, it looks like the team will make the playoffs this year. How far they will go without Palmer is anyone’s guess. I am very happy for Bruce Arians and his success.

THUMBS DOWN

The Denver Broncos

I give Denver a mild “Thumbs Down .” QB Peyton Manning had a string of games (New England, Oakland, Rams) where he had thrown multiple interceptions. In the past few games. The Broncos have been starting games a bit slow, and have been having trouble running the ball due to issues on the offensive line and injuries to their top running backs. Having C.J. Anderson helps that issue.

The Broncos have been 2-2 in their last 4 games. They’ve had some injuries to key players, some of whom should be back in the coming weeks, so that’s why I don’t give them a total thumbs down. Don’t worry. They will be fine.

The Pittsburgh Steelers:

Why are the Steelers here? The Steelers have yet to understand that every game is important. I hope they have learned that while on their bye week. How on earth do you lose to the hapless New York Jets? That team had ONE WIN!!! Never underestimate ANY opponent!

The Steelers nearly blew it again against the Tennessee Titans on Monday Night Football. However, they managed to win that one. The team has to be prepared for all your opponents, no matter what their record is. No team is going to roll over and lay down just because you are the Pittsburgh Steelers. They get paid also.

The NFC South:

What a mess in the NFC South. Does anyone want to win the division? The Saints blew a chance to have sole possession of first place in their loss to the Ravens. They are tied with the Atlanta Falcons (both at 4-7). The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are 2 games back in last place with a 2-9 record. The Carolina Panthers are in striking distance at 3-7-1.

What has happened to this division? The Saints can’t win on the road or even at home. The Saints used to be unbeatable at home. What’s happened to QB Drew Brees? The Falcons are a dumpster fire. The Panthers have no physicality. The Bucs have a great rookie receiver Mike Evans. The idea that a sub 500 team from this division is going to make the playoffs really rubs me the wrong way, as there will be teams will good records that will miss the playoffs.

Coaches on the Hot Seat:

It’s also that time of year when discussions of which coach might or might not be getting fired start warming up. I have a few that I suspect will be gone. I also sense that there will be some General Managers that will be on the outs. Mind you, I am just speculating.

It looks like Rex Ryan, the head coach of the New York Jets, is going to be out of a job by year’s end. I honestly think Coach Ryan’s season has been undermined by the ineptitude of GM John Idzik. Idzik is a cap guy. All he cares about is keeping spending down. I mean, I know that Ryan is a defensive guy. However, he did lead the team to two straight AFC Championship game appearances with Mark Sanchez as quarterback, so Ryan has success as a head coach.

I realize that lately the team’s been mediocre, this season has been a disaster. Hard to put it all on Ryan when he doesn’t have much of a team. The team signed Eric Decker, when Emmanuel Sanders was available. The team left the secondary cubbard bare, and the QB position is nonexistent. Geno Smith has just been named the starter. What a joke. Rex Ryan is a “dead man waking,” so to speak.

The Jets organization wouldn’t let him discuss his visit with his ailing father, the legendary Buddy Ryan. ( http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/11/26/jets-wouldnt-let-rex-talk-about-buddys-health-situation/ ) How petty is that? If/when Ryan goes, I think Idzik needs to go also. The entire Jets organization needs cleaning up from top to bottom. Will owner Woody Johnson do it? I don’t think so. I would dump Idzik over Ryan.

The New York Giants have been a dumpster fire as well. I am thinking that this will be coach Tom Coughlin’s last year with the team. I don’t see the team putting in a lot of effort. The new Offensive Coordinator is not very impressive. The defense can’t get a pass rush. In this past Sunday’s game against the Cowboys, QB Tony Romo had all day to throw.

I also feel that GM Jerry Reese needs to go also. The reasons are bad draft picks, outside of Odell Beckham, Jr. and bad trades. Both Coughlin and Reese have done great things for the Giants, but I think it’s time for them to go. As patient as the Mara family is, I am not sure if they will get rid of Reese.

Mark Trestman, head coach of the Chicago Bears, needs to go. Wow. I am still wondering why the Bears dumped former coach Lovie Smith. Smith got the team to a Super Bowl, and in what would be his last season, a 10-6 record, and he’s gone? What has this Trestman guy done? He’s been a disaster.

The once vaunted Chicago Bears defense is playing like the Bad News Bears. They can’t cover anyone. They gave up over 50 points to the blood rival Green Bay Packers, and to the New England Patriots the prior week. The offense has playmakers, but QB Jay Cutler is so erratic, and I am being kind. I don’t see that team being inspired by him at all, or even wanting to play for him. Trestman need to go.

Miscellaneous (DC issues, player safety inconsistency, clock management):

I realize that this is getting long, so I will wrap this up with a few items that deserve a huge “Thumbs Down.’ I will start with the issue of player safety involving Detroit Lions Center Dominic Raiola and New England Patriots rookie LB Zach Moore. After last Sunday’s game, Raiola admitted that he dove at Moore’s knees in retaliation for the Patriots going in for a score instead of taking three knees. ( http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/11/23/lions-dominic-raiola-admits-going-at-a-patriots-knees/ ) Raiola was not punished by the NFL. The NFL may not have seen a need to fine him, but I do wonder why the same NFL is so quick to fine players 10 grand for uniform violations, 100 grand for not having the right headphones, but won’t fine a guy who ADMITS he tried to take another player’s knees out. This is coming from a league that emphasizes player safety? Right.

Mr. Raiola, your Lions had 60 minutes to stop the Patriots from scoring. The Lions were the #1 defense right? You boasted in the article that you were “playing football” when you purposely dove at Moore’s knees. Well, what were the Patriots playing, solitaire? You and your team got beat. No need for the cheap shot. Your defense had chances to stop the Patriots and didn’t do it. Just be glad that the NFL looked the other way.

Looks like the Nation’s Capitol is going to have gridlock on its NFL team. What a mess. I mean, Coach Jay Gruden announces to the world that RGIII is basically a project. I was stunned. Look, I was tired of hearing RGIII throwing his teammates under the bus, but Gruden really pulled the trump card.

Now that RGIII has been benched for Colt McCoy, it will remain to be seen what the future brings for RGIII. Will owner Dan Snyder trade him? Will RGIII ever regain the promising talent he had? Stay tuned. This is far from over.

I have to say something about that clock management mess in Atlanta. Coach Mike Smith, another coach who I think is gone, had one of the most idiotic explanations after the game. I mean, he was afraid that Cleveland would use a time out, so that’s why he called timeout? I just shook my head.

That is exactly what you want the other team to do. You want them to start burning their timeouts. I could not believe that Mike Smith handed that game to the Browns like that. Owner Arthur Blank should have come down to the field and fired Smith on the spot.

I hope my readers enjoyed the blog. I’m looking forward to the post – Thanksgiving push to the playoffs. I think the last few games will be very interesting. Each game gets a little bit bigger. Enjoy the holidays and the games. Feedback is welcome. See you next time.

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Brock Lesnar Leaning Towards A UFC Return

November 20, 2014 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

The rumors of Brock Lesnar back to the UFC have taken on a whole new meaning. These tidbits are no longer rumors as it does appear that Lesnar could be returning to the UFC in 2015…or elesewhere according to one report.

Dave Meltzer dropped a bombshell on his latest F4Wonline.com podcast. Meltzer not only confirmed Dana White’s statements earlier this week about Brock wanting back in, but Dave reported that Brock is leaning towards a return to the UFC. The former UFC champion could return to the octagon at age 38 in 2015 in what could be one of the biggest returns in UFC history.

Meltzer also mentioned that Brock may have another option. According to Dave, Bellator is very aggressive right now, especially coming off a monster rating for the Ortiz vs. Bonnar fight. Meltzer speculates that Bellator will get in the Brock Lesnar game and could make Brock a very enticing offer. Meltzer did point out that as of his podcast, there had been no talks between Lesnar and Bellator.

Brock will become one of the hottest free agents at the perfect time next spring. While Brock has always had plenty of leverage to negotiate the WWE and the UFC against each other for his services, he now has a new suitor in the mix. Brock is not known for his company loyalty so it will come down to what Brock Lesnar’s goals are in 2015 and whether UFC, WWE, or Bellator can meet them better than the others.

The timing of this story couldn’t come at a worse time for the WWE. The economics of the company have completely changed with the network. The money and incentive to sign Brock back in 2012 just don’t make sense under the new business plan. Could they outmatch the others? Sure, but it makes no fiscal sense to do so. In 2012 they had much more leverage with better finances and a Brock who was coming off his worst fight in UFC history. Those advantages won’t exits during these negotiations.

Making matters worse is that Brock is currently walking around with the WWE title. The working plan was to leave the belt on Brock through WrestleMania and have the Beast Incarnate drop it to Roman Reigns. I think that changes with these stories. If these stories are out now, imagine how hot these rumors and stories will get by Mania. Remember the last time Brock worked a WrestleMania on the way out? It didn’t go well. I would be shocked if Brock leaves the Rumble with the title in light of these latest developments.

I think if Brock is getting back into the MMA game that there is no question he is signing with the UFC. Brock is a guy that appears to want the best competition in whatever sport he is competing. He could have played football or tried out in the CFL but instead went to the NFL. He could have went to Strikeforce but instead went to the UFC. This is a guy that wants to fight the best and the UFC is the only place that is going to happen.

Let’s be frank. The UFC needs Brock Lesnar more than Brock needs the UFC. He is the biggest draw in company history and has yet to be replaced. I have no doubts that the UFC will do everything in their power to bring him back. I don’t think he is beating Cain or JDS but you never know. Maybe he gets lucky against a couple of guys and catches someone like Werdum in transition? It can happen.

Nobody ever expected him to win the heavyweight title the first time. I won’t bet against Brock Lesnar.

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WWE: Can We Just End This Madness Now?

November 20, 2014 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Can we just get this over with already? Can Brock Lesnar finally leave the WWE so John Cena or Seth Rollins or Judy Bloom can win the damn WWE World Title and put an end to all this madness? Do we really have to endure another four months of lousy pay-per-views, “go home” Raw programs and the sight of John Cena clinching his fists like he is the only wrestler in the world that thinks he can save the entire planet with one punch?

Monday Night’s “Go Home” show with Survivor Series right on the horizon was about as excited as watching Florida Gators football. The addition of Ryback to Team Cena does nothing for me and the surprise addition of Erick Rowan to counter the Authority’s ad of Luke Harper is as bizarre as the latest infatuation with Kim Kardashian (that’s a story for later).

The latest news around the horn is that Lesnar has the itch for get back in a octagon which should set the wrestling world ablaze about how he should not be at home with beer and chips watching all the shenanigans go down with the company that signed him to a contract that pays him tons of mullah and allows him to be a part-time champion.

What in the name of Lou Thesz is going on?

UFC President Dana White revealed that the current holder of WWE World Heavyweight Championship belt is now “interested” in returning to MMA, and it’s possible the switch could come shortly after WrestleMania 31.

This would all work and flow together as a storyline, given the fact Lesnar can leave the WWE after March.

“This would leave Lesnar a free agent and it’s believed that Brock has a been a negotiating beast with Vince McMahon and Triple H, using the possibility of his return to the UFC as leverage for getting a better deal. The question is whether the WWE considers him worth the price of doing business, and whether or not this bargaining chip holds any weight. After all, Lesnar is set to turn 38-years-old in 2015, which is quite advanced in years when it comes to the MMA world.”

The only thing that this does right now is leave the current state of the WWE World Title in limbo.

There has not been a situation like this that the WWE Champion has been in this kind of limbo. Even with The Rock’s short title reign, he did promos, made appearances on Raw and kept the fans in suspense – wanting more. Where there was heat on the company, the idea that “Superman” would sve the WWE was a major part of the company’s angle.

It’s time to bring back the WWE World Title and for it to be defended at every single pay-per-view. But the lure of potentially getting back into a ring with the UFC combatants sours the fans’ impression of not only the wrestler, but also the title – as if it does not mean anything to the company right not.

Weren’t the days of CM Punk and John Cena getting in a ring and trading verbal abuse before they tore down the house grappling more fun than this?

No WWE Champion and 10 wrestlers (11, if you count Cesaro, who is the best jobber the WWE has ever had).

Now, with Survivor Series ready to mellow us all out, isn’t it time for the WWE to demand that its champion be present and accounted for since the final pay-per-view must tantalize you before it puts us all to sleep? No reversal of power is going to do that and at this moment, the WWE champion may not be able to do that either.

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NFL Week 11 Recap and Week 12 Picks

November 19, 2014 By: Category: NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

I’m fairly certain that the one thing I find absolutely infuriating in sports is when athletes quit. This past weekend we had 3 examples of football players quitting within 2 days of each other. 49ers linebacker Ahmad Brooks started the theme on Sunday when he took himself out of the 49ers game due to what he felt was inadequate playing time.

The 49ers have had an emerging star in Chris Borland at Linebacker and he has been given his fair share of opportunities this season. A lot of his chances come because of Aldon Smith’s suspension and Navorro Bowman’s recovery from knee surgery. Bowman has found his plays down this season and reacted on Sunday by sitting on the bench, pouting. A multi-millionaire baby…..sat there….on the bench….in front of thousands in attendance and millions watching around at home…..and he pouted.

He pouted like a 2 year old when they spill their milk. And then, in a bizarre game of “whatever you can do, I can do better,” Legarrette Blount and Ben Tate quit on their respective teams Sunday and Monday. During the 2nd half of their Monday Night Football game, Steelers Running Back Le’Veon Bell was stomping the Titans into oblivion. Back-up Running Back Legarette Blount decided that the 4th quarter was the opportune time to go check his fantasy lineup score and proceeded to leave the bench, shower and get ready to leave the game….with it still going on! Blount was unhappy with his usage (no pun intended) and proceeded to get on the Brooks cry train and left the field.

Thankfully the Steelers cut Blount promptly the next morning and now the man who once punched another player in the face at the end of the game and was lucky enough to even have a job in the first place, finds himself looking for his 5th team in as many years. How about Ben Tate, formerly of the Browns and now of the Vikings? Tate had some solid years as a back-up to Arian Foster in Houston and that led to him being one of the hottest Free Agents this past off season. Tate had a few personal injuries and the emergence of a trio of great rookie Running Backs led to the “pout train” taking a trip through Cleveland before its trip down to Nashville. The Browns would cut Tate on Monday morning.

I have no sympathy for these guys who put themselves over their team. The 49ers, Steelers and Browns are all winning currently and look like they can cause some major noise in their respective conferences. You don’t want to be here? Fine, pack your bags and don’t let the door hit you on the way out. What happened to the days when players would do whatever it took in the name of winning a game? The Steeler game was close at the end. What if Bell would have suffered an injury in the middle of the 4th quarter?

“Hey ah…anyone see Legarrette?”…..”Hold on coach, he’s in the middle of this crucial mission of Call of Duty and it couldn’t wait”.

“Hey ah…anyone see Legarrette?”….”Hold on coach, he thought he left his stove on back in Pittsburgh, he went to go check on it”

It’s ridiculous! I saw reports that one vocal Steeler player didn’t even want Blount on the bus on the ride back to the hotel / airport after the game. I wouldn’t either, I’d toss him 50 bucks and a Mega-Bus schedule. The 49ers should have reacted in this same way that the Browns and Steelers did. I am tired of these multi-million dollar athletes who put themselves above other guys over a silly thing as their plays being reduced or things just not going their way. Kudos to the Steelers and Browns. Hopefully this sends a message to the other players in the league thinking about taking a seat for their own better good.

Week 11 Recap

Bold Prediction from Week 11: Texans over the Browns. – RIGHT – Pretty simple result here. I don’t believe in the Browns. I am happy that one of the worst teams in the history of the NFL seems to be on the rise but until they get into the playoffs and have some major wins, I more or less will always favor the opponent.

Guaranteed Lock from Week 11: Raiders over the Chargers. – WRONG - 0-16 here we come Raider Nation! Their remaining schedule has them facing the Chiefs, Rams, 49ers, Chiefs, Bills and Broncos. The ONLY game I think they have a remote chance of winning would be the final against Denver (due to Denver resting starters for playoffs). However, I’m fairly certain Peyton Manning will have something to say about potentially losing to a 0-15 team.

Week 12 Predictions:

Bold Prediction for Week 12: Giants over the Cowboys. – This is what Eli Manning does. He brings all us suckers in close with poor play, lulls us to sleep like little babies and then boom, he throws for 300, 3 TD’s, no picks and the team wins. I like it to happen against the Cowboys Sunday night.

Guaranteed Lock for Week 11: Broncos over the Dolphins. – Denver has been fairly mediocre the last 3 weeks. It would not be surprising that the red hot Dolphins could pull the win off but I believe Manning ends any questions to his play on Sunday with an absolute beat down of the Dolphins.

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Fantasy Football Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups

November 18, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

In light of the Adrian Peterson verdict, I am pretty fired up this morning. Stay tuned for a few thoughts on the NFL and what this guy thinks about the AP and the Ray Rice situation. As usual there are more questions than answers as we enter playoff season. Sure there are a couple of weeks left but there is no doubt that many of us are thinking about our road to the championship. All year long I preached trust in your starters and don’t worry about matchups, just let the good players play.   Well that playbook is getting ready to head out the window as real team start to think about real playoffs. Time to guess who is going to play and who is going to rest. Let’s not waste any more time on this.

Quarterback:

Brian Hoyer, Cleveland Browns- No one wants to admit it but the Browns are pretty good. Everyone predicted that Johnny Football was going to be running this team by the end of the year and look at what has happened. Hoyer is a top 20 QB who is a lock for 13pts each week. The running game seems to be working itself out and the Josh Gordon’s return is looming on the horizon. These guys could be fighting for a playoff spot all the way to the end which means there could be a lot of value in Hoyer.

Drew Stanton, Arizona Cardinals- Another team that is better than people had expected. Yes, we knew the Cardinals were tough but we didn’t expect them to be in the “best team in the NFL” discussion. At least not a serious part of it. 2 touchdowns and over 300 yards taking over for the injured Palmer. Stanton is going to get you the same 13pts each week you will see with Hoyer but he is going to have more opportunities to blow up the score board with the weapons he has at his disposal. Also that Cardinal defense is going to keep the ball in Stanton’s hands. This might be the one team that doesn’t need to ride Stanton too hard to finish the season, however they may have him play the whole way just to get the reps. Either way he is going to get you something. And no I am not worried about him in Seattle.

Kyle Orton, Buffalo Bills- Here I am looking at quantity over quality. Orton loves to throw the ball and has proven time and time again that he can rack up the yardage through the air. It looks as though Fred Jackson is finally going to make is way back. That will free up some pressure from the rest of the offense to have Jackson catching passes out of the backfield. Yes he did go without a score against a tough Miami defense and he is questionable to start. I still think Orton has a lot left in his tank this season and we will that against the Jets on Sunday.

Running Back:

Isaiah Crowell, Cleveland Browns- Here is this week’s HOT free agent pick-up. Crowell was already going to be on this list, but the release of Ben Tate earlier this morning puts the spot light on Crowell. Everyone is looking at Gordon to make a huge impact and that is really good for the Browns running game. I would keep my eye on West as he will get some of the carries but right now Crowell is firmly in the driver’s seat. The Browns are going to be fighting to stay near the top of the tough division, Crowell might be the blue light special that brings home the gold.

Jonus Gray, New England Patriots- This is probably the name on the top of everyone list. He appears to be the lead back in New England which means he should be picked up, there is no doubt about that. He has not shown the consistency we would expect from a #1 back on a top team but he is a threat all the time. Running for 199 yards and 4 TD’s is going to get everyone’s attention. Those who started him last week probably walked away a winner. Maybe you get lucky and history repeats itself.

Tre Mason, St. Louis Rams- Mason has been the lead back in Stl. for several weeks now but his impact has not always been a huge one. However I am wondering if his 113 yards against a good Bronco’s team is the spark that will ignite a fantasy inferno. Like everywhere else, if you are the lead back you are going to get the carries which leads to the scoring and yardage opportunities. I guess the Chargers get to find out if he is the real deal. Personally I don’t think you can go wrong with Mason this week.

Alfred Blue, Houston Texans- I guess there is extra room on the list this week or maybe I just don’t want to leave any man behind. Foster was out and Blue finally did what owners had hoped he would do earlier in the season, BE PRODUCTIVE! I am not sure of Fosters status this week, I know they want him back. However, in the event he is unable to go I would take a shot on Blue. The Texans have a decent offense and like to balance their attack. Without Foster, Blue is a big part of that.

Wide Receiver:

Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles- There are only two things for certain in this life, death and taxes. Well I think that it is time to add Matthews to that list. 4 TD’s in 3 weeks to go along with 15 catches for 285 yards, those are Maclin type numbers. It is hard to find much consistency in Chip Kelly’s offense but Matthews seems to have found himself a niche. He might be one of the hottest receiver pickups this season.

Kenny Britt, St. Louis Rams-With Quick down someone has to step up and fill the void. Britt did that this week after he was on the receiving end of 4 passes from Hill including a TD. He only gets targeted a few times each week but he is making the most out of his targets averaging over 10 yards per catch in the last 4 games. Knee injuries slowed what looked to be a hall of fame career but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have something left in the tank. There are no guarantees here, but Britt could capture some of that magic he had a few years ago in Tennessee. If he does he will help you out.

John Brown, Arizona Cardinals- Statistically Brown is the 2nd best receiver on this team behind Larry Fitzgerald. In fact he is 2nd in all categories except for TD’s where he is 1st. Not a whole lot of secrets here, the guy gets targets and he finds the end zone. He has breakaway speed and will see a lot of single coverage as teams have to account for Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd. This rookie might be a guy to target if you are in a keeper league.

Tight End:

Coby Fleener, Indianapolis Colts- The Colts took a whooping at the hands of Tom Brady and Patriots this week losing Bradshaw and possibly Dwayne Allen in the process. I guess you could call this a case of addition by subtraction. The loss of 2 key recievers brings Fleener to the front of the line. Fleener has put together a few good weeks and this could be the breakout opportunity he needs. As much as I would like to see Richardson value increase this week my money is on Fleener. The loss of Bradshaw means more passing and the door is open to Fleener. Coming off 7 catches for 177 yards, this could be someone to get excited about.

Heath Miller, Pittsburgh Steelers- No it isn’t grandparent’s day. Miller has proven once again that he has a little life left in his old body. I don’t even know how old he is but he has been around a while. Big Ben is still throwing a lot and Mille is quietly bringing in what he can. TE is a very shallow position and Miller isn’t a threat to get huge points but he might just get you the few points you need to come out on top.

Mychal Rivera, Oakland Raiders- I should just direct you to my blog from last week. Rovera took a little step back totaling 4 pts on only 40 yards but that shoudn’t scare you too bad since that is 2 more points than Jimmy Graham. Rivera isn’t Graham but he is a good TE who is allowed to have a down week. The upside here is that GM’s who scooped him up last week might have dropped him in their disappointment. Now is a good time to grab this guy, he is going to score in bunches the rest of the way.

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UFC Prez Says Brock Lesnar Wants To Fight

November 18, 2014 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

The quarterly Brock Lesnar to UFC rumors have reared their ugly head again. Thanks to UFC boss Dana White, the hot topic is back in conversation and according to the UFC president, it is a real possibility.

The UFC held a big press conference on Monday to announce…well nothing of note. UFC president Dana White took questions from the media and the name Brock Lesnar popped up. White told the media that while Lesnar is under contract to the WWE right now, he is healthy and has expressed interest in fighting again.

This isn’t a new story. The Brock back to UFC story has popped up several times in the last couple of years. The irony is that as much as Dana White says he hates rumors, he is generally the one to start the talk. That said, I certainly can’t blame him when you look at the void Brock has left in the UFC.

Brock Lesnar was the biggest draw in UFC history. There are certainly a variety of reasons but it is not coincidence that the UFC has not been the same since Brock left. No, he didn’t single handedly kill the momentum of the company. However, his departure took money away and attention away from the UFC that they haven’t gotten back.

As Dana said, Brock is still under a WWE contract. Brock’s contract expires with his WrestleMania 31 match. There are no rumors at all indicating that Brock and the WWE are in talks to re-negotiate. Several pro wrestling pundits have raised concerns about Brock being a lame duck champion heading into Mania. This UFC talk certainly won’t help quell those concerns.

A year ago it was a given that Brock and the WWE would agree on a new deal. Yet the economics are much different today for the WWE. With pay-per-view revenue off of the table and the emphasis on WWE Network subscriptions, an objective look at the landscape says that it will be very hard for the WWE to justify giving Brock a new deal.

I am a big Brock fan but the bottom line is the bottom line and he hasn’t been the draw for the company that most thought he would be. He hasn’t brought new viewers with him. His last PPV appearance against John Cena drew a disappointing buyrate. In the ring and on television he has been solid, but there is no indication he is moving any needles under the new business structure. It would certainly be in Brock’s interest to drum up these rumors because quite frankly I don’t know what kind of leverage he is going to have this spring when it comes to negotiating a new deal.

I suppose there is always the potential for the WWE and UFC to work out some kind of arrangement. There is all kinds of buzz about the WWE wanting Ronda Rousey for a match or appearance. There is always the possibility that Dana and McMahon could work out some kind of swap allowing Brock to fight in the UFC and Ronda to appear or wrestle a WWE match. I don’t foresee that ever happening but the deal would certainly be advantageous to both sides. Especially if the WWE could keep Brock yet lease him out the UFC to offset some costs.

Who knows what will happen in 2015. The UFC is desperate for stars and would likely make Brock a deal, giving Brock one last huge MMA payoff as he enters his forties. At 37 and with a history of injuries, I can’t imagine Brock being competitive in the current UFC landscape. The heavyweight division was much different when Brock came into the UFC in 2008. The UFC could always give him a favorable fight against a Big Foot Silva or even Mark Hunt. If Lesnar wins, I would expect the UFC to thrust him right into a title fight. If he loses, everyone wins with a big payday and a ride off into the sunset for the Beast Incarnate.

2015 could be a very interesting year indeed.

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NFL Week 10 Recap and Week 11 Chatter

November 13, 2014 By: Category: NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

Week 10 Recap, Week 11 Questions / Predictions

  • Week 10 had its fair share of disappointing showings. Here’s a headline that has become all but routine: the Pittsburgh Steelers losing to a far lesser opponent. Let’s not forget the Bears were destroyed and embarrassed on national TV Sunday night. And we certainly can’t forget to start the week off it was the Bengals, who yet again, crumbled…..I mean absolutely crumbled in the primetime lights when it mattered the most. I look at all these games and there is one that sticks out the most to me. It was the Buffalo Bills going down at home to the Kansas City Chiefs. This was a huge let down. The Bills have battled all season through position changes, key injuries and still found themselves at 5-3 through 8 games. They faced off against a mirror image of themselves in the Chiefs and needed to capitalize with a victory to keep pace in the division and against a team that a potential Wild Card battle could be had at the end of the season. The Bills lead most of the game and kept Jamaal Charles contained for the most part, minus a 40 yard TD run but this game was theirs to have. Leading 13-3 in the 3rd quarter, the wheels of the infamous Bills wagon fell off. 2 TD’s late it was game over and I think it could have dare say ended a 5-4 teams playoff hopes already. Every team in the AFC north is 2 games above .500. 3 teams in the AFC West are over .500 and 2 other teams in the AFC east are as well. This is going to be one of the tightest playoff races in AFC history and the Bills needed to win this home game more than anything. The Bills next 3 games have them facing off with the Dolphins in a huge divisional game, then the lowly Jets come to Buffalo, then capped off with one of the NFL’s pleasant surprises, the Cleveland Browns. Buffalo needs to pick it up in the coming weeks or they will soon be out of the playoff picture.

Week 11 Questions / Preview / Quick Hits:

  • Has there ever been a more important game between two 3-6 teams? The Panthers and Falcons are matching up Sunday in Carolina in A BATTLE FOR SOLE POSSESSION OF 2ND PLACE in the division. How AWFUL is the NFC South? I predicted that the NFC East was going to be the worst division in football to start the season but I couldn’t have been more wrong. No matter what happens from this point on till the end, the NFC South will be by far the worst division to end the season. Someone is going to win this thing at 7-9 or 9-7 and then probably upset one of the best teams in the playoffs. Why? Because NFL, that’s why.
  • Every Steeler nation fan is going to be glued to the TV on Monday night against the Titans. The Steelers yet again disappointed their legion of fans by laying a dud against a much inferior opponent last Sunday. Arguably the Titans are even more inferior to the Jets and are next up for the Steelers. History shows that the Steelers should dispatch the Titans but from now until the rest of the season I have no faith in the Steelers to win a football game against teams with below .500 records. If they were playing the Eagles this week? Steelers win by 30. But they are playing the Titans, so they will more than likely lose on a last second field goal similar to a few years ago to the very same opponent.
  • Former NFL Quarterback Chris Simms was recently on the Jim Rome Radio Show (CBS Network). Simms never really got off the ground in the NFL as a Quarterback but did hang around for close to 10 years in the league. There is no doubt that Simms is one of the toughest men to ever play any sport. It’s a shame I have to refresh your memories but Simms was battered and beaten (literally) by the Panthers in a game during the 2006 season. Simms would leave with discomfort and then return in the same game to lead a successful scoring drive. Simms was in so much pain after the game that he stayed in Carolina and went to the hospital. What did the doctor’s discover? A ruptured spleen caused hours earlier. Simms had lost 5-6 pints of blood and doctor’s even brought in his family to say goodbye to him as he wasn’t supposed to make it. Simms would recover and even come back and play sparingly in the league for a few more years. Chris Simms = MAN. I sort of digressed off my original point so here goes: Simms commented on the Jim Rome Show that he would put Russell Wilson in the Top 5 NFL Quarterbacks currently playing. Who’s not on the list? Tom Brady. After Rome rephrased the question making sure Simms didn’t think it was a question about the “best future quarterback”, Simms stood tall and said “No” he would take Wilson over Brady as a Top 5 QB. Simms could not be more wrong with that. Wilson has looked rushed this season, panicked and allegedly rattled from a locker room deteriorating around him. I do think Wilson is good but if you swap Brady and Wilson right now, the Patriots are as bad as the Jets and Seattle would probably be 9-0. No chance and no scenario I take Wilson over Brady (this season). But kudos to Simms because he threw something out there and did get people talking about it. Just sad that he couldn’t be more wrong.

Recap from Week 10 predictions:

Bold Predication from Week 10: Titans over the Ravens. – WRONG- This game started in favor of the Titans. However, ever since the NFL instituted that pesky “4 quarters of play” rule the Titans have been doomed. They completely shelved the game after the 1st and the Ravens got a much needed win.

Guaranteed Lock from Week 10: Saints over the 49ers. – WRONG – Great job to Kaepernick and company continuing to scratch and claw in the NFC West and pull out the massive road victory. The Saints continue to be one of my biggest let downs of the season but yet, at 4-5, they are in complete control of the NFC South. Why? Because NFL, that’s why.

Week 11 predictions

Bold Prediction for Week 11: Texans over the Browns. I don’t know how shocking a 4-5 team beating a 6-3 team would really be but since the world has ordained Brian Hoyer as the biggest savior in Cleveland since LeBron and then the sequel, LeBron: Returns, Cleveland is bound to have a letdown soon. I’ll take that to happen this week against Houston’s savior, Ryan Mallet

Guaranteed Lock for Week 11: Raiders over the Chargers. Here, let me type it again. Raiders over the Chargers. Oakland has to win this game, you just can’t go 0-16. If they go 0-16, that franchise will crumble from the top to the bottom. San Diego has come down to earth in recent weeks, mainly since the Chiefs knocked them off. I believe in Derek Carr to lead this team to their first win of the season.

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Fantasy Football Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups

November 12, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

At the beginning of the season I wrote a blog titled “Fantasy rules to live by.” If you asked me I would describe it as the Fantasy Football equivalent to Sun Tzu’s book “The Art of War.” The basic theme is don’t overreach, don’t overreact, and finally don’t overthink. It requires a bit of discipline and a lot of patience, but it always pays off, even if it doesn’t always look like it on paper. You might remember last week I was licking the wounds from the 3 game losing streak only to come back this week with the highest score of the season.

Even though I am in 4th place my team is the one that everyone is watching. My team is the one hitting its stride when it matters most. It’s hard to sit on your hands after back to back losses and not blow up your team for the “next big thing.” Most of us are in leagues of at least 10 people which means someone is going to make a mistake and if you wait long enough you can capitalize on it.

Enough about me, this blog is for you. The end is near with only 3 or 4 weeks left in the season. That means there are only 2 types of waiver watchers left out there. Those of you who are trying to make the playoffs and those of you who are already in the playoffs. One group is looking to for a boost while the other is just trying to keep the advantage. Either way the next 3 weeks are possibly the most important of the season.

Quarterback:

Mark Sanchez, Philadelphia Eagles- Sanchez makes the top spot for the second week in a row because he is still only 40% owned. Don’t expect that to be the case next week, in fact I don’t expect that 40% to last the next 24 hours. Sanchez is now playing in one of the most QB friendly offenses in the league and he is surrounded by more weapons than he can shake a stick at. Vegas is predicting this game to be a shootout and it will have to be if the Eagles are going to stand a chance. Chip Kelly is going to rely on Sanchez to put points up on that board. Even if you don’t believe in Sanchez, I think this season has proved that you can believe in Chip Kelly.

Josh McCown, Tampa Bay Buccaneers- In his 1st week back Bucs fans finally saw the McCown they thought had signed over the summer. His “almost tears” after last week’s tough loss I will chalk up to passion for the game. They have a favorable match-up this week against the Redskins. Evans has emerged as a legit threat that defenses have to account for who knows how to get into the end-zone. Jackson is still a top receiver in this league. If the running game can carry its part of the load I would look for McCown to score big numbers again this week.

Ryan Tannehill, Alex Smith, and Ryan Fitzpatrick should have honorable mention this week. All 3 have been good “replacement” players however they all have difficult matchups.

Running Back:

C.J. Anderson. Denver Broncos-   I expected Monte Ball to underachieve since week #1 which is why I didn’t draft him. He was slated to be the starter last year and lost out to Knowshon Moreno and then this year he was outplayed by Hillman. I don’t buy the injury excuse. Face it, Ball just isn’t the back we hoped he would be. Enter C.J. Anderson who had 163 yards from scrimmage with a touchdown. He averaged almost 7 yards per carry which is incredible. Not sure how long Hillman is out, but if you are looking for a fill in this week, I expect another big game out of Anderson.

Terrance West, Cleveland Browns- Here is another name that we have seen here before but I am thinking that this will be the last time. It appears that he has taken the lead back role away from Ben Tate who has underachieved as the Brown starter. If that trend continues West will be good for 10pts which is plenty if you looking for a one week boost. They are going up against a tough Houston defense but if he gets the carries I look for West to be a top 15 back this week.

Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers- I don’t think it has quite clicked with everyone that he is going to be taking his starting job back in an offense that needs a boost after a difficult loss. He is active in both the running and passing game and has the potential to score big points. He should be starting in all formats and is still readily available. Similar to Sanchez, once these waiver blogs and articles start hitting websites he isn’t going to last very long.

Wide Receivers:

Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants- With all eyes on Ruben Randle it appears the Beckham has taken over the #1 receiver spot. Maybe not in targets or on the depth chart but statistically he is looking strong. Jennings is supposed to back this week and Giants showed they can move the ball on a tough defense after staying close for a while in Seattle. Jennings will give Beckham some single coverage opportunities and Manning will find him. 15 catches for 164 yards over the last 2 weeks are fantasy starter numbers. Keep your eye on this guy.

Cecil Shorts III, Jacksonville Jaguars- BYE WEEK ALERT! He is not playing this weekend which is the reason he is on this list. This guy was supposed to be the man this year, picked up and dropped multiple times because of high expectations that never worked out. Last week he finally stepped up. If that was a sign of things to come he is worth a stash. Remember with playoffs coming up you may need to rely on some “unproven” players to carry you to the end. Shorts might be a steal.

Preston Parker, New York Giants- The down side here is a rookie who has really only had one strong week. The upside is that it came in the form of 7 catches for 79 yards and a touchdown against the Seahawks. That is an impressive resume. Manning will continue to throw so there is a good chance that Parker will continue to get passes in his direction. If he continues to haul them in he will be a trusted force to be reckoned with.

Tight End:

Mychal Rivera, Oakland Raiders- Seems like there is at least one “must have” player in each of the categories this week. I have posed this questions a few times this season but let’s try it again. How many weeks does a guy have to perform before we actually buy into him? 21 catches, 185 yards, and 3 touchdowns in 3 weeks. During his hot streak he is averaging 12 pts per week. That puts him in the top 3! One more note if you are not already buying. He did this against Cleveland, Seattle, and Denver.

Charles Clay, Miami Dolphins- Here is your run of the mill fantasy fill in. The Dolphins have been a decent team and Tannehill has proven to be able to get the ball to his receivers. He is getting 4-7 catches a week so there is always potential for a few points maybe a touchdown on a good day. They are playing the Bills which means short passes might be on the menu and Clay might see a little more action that he is used to.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers- If you are like me you are asking yourself, who? I figured that we needed a little fresh meat this week and maybe this Jenkins character will be something special. Is it a coincidence that he pops up on the radar the same week McCown returns? Maybe. He is on the field about 85% of the snaps so again with that word “opportunity.” This is probably a stretch but there isn’t much out there for TE this week.

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Top 10 Fantasy Football Busts This Season

November 07, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, lists, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

We are heading into the tenth week of the Fantasy Football season and I think it’s time to start holding people accountable. Several of the top ranked players entering this season have failed to deliver and it is time to start calling them out.

Fantasy football owners spend weeks preparing for drafts. Owners research stats, explore trends, and rely on experts to point them in the right direction. While there are many players that the experts got right, both experts and owners came up short when it came to the top picks. What makes matters worse is that a failed top draft pick is all you need to ruin your season.

We have ten weeks of stats to analyze as we head into the fantasy playoffs and I think we have enough to declare a player a bust. Now I’ll be fair and say that many of these players under-performed due to injuries, but as the old saying goes, “You are what you are,” and every single one of these players have failed to meet the expectations that come with being a top fantasy draft pick.

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles - McCoy may be the biggest bust on this list for one reason. McCoy was not hurt, or at least reportedly. There have been rumors for weeks that McCoy was playing hurt but nothing has been confirmed, thus we have to conclude he is fine.

McCoy finished the 2013-14 season as the second best RB in fantasy standard leagues behind Jamaal Charles. Nothing changed in the offseason to give you any indication that he would fall off. Unfortunately nobody could have predicted how badly the offensive line problems would impact Shady. However, many great running backs have gotten it done with shaky QBs and bad lines, even Shady in the past so those are no excuses.

McCoy currently ranks 20th in fantasy RBs in standard scoring leagues. To give you a better perspective, Justin Forsett, Jeremy Hill, Matt Asiata, and Chris Ivory are all having better seasons. You could have gotten every one of those guys off of waivers, yet the only way you were getting McCoy was with a top five pick. That hurts!

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions – The warning signs have been there. Johnson finished the 2013-14 season hurt and saw his numbers go from four weeks of double-digit games to three weeks of single digit games, sitting out the final game. While we were all told that he was fine heading into the season, some had doubts, but nobody predicted this kind of a drop off.

Johnson is not even ranked in the first page on ESPN if you look at fantasy wide receivers in standard scoring leagues. Johnson opened up the season with an expected big game putting up 28 points with 2 TDs. It looked like Megatron was back. Then came an 8 point game in Week 2, an injury, and four straight doughnuts if you owned him due to him missing games or playing as a decoy.

Johnson was ranked 6th overall on Fantasy Pros coming into the season. You don’t own Calvin Johnson unless you took him with your first pick. Unless you drafted well, you are hurting. Fortunately wide receivers pop up weekly on the wire, yet you will never find someone to deliver those 28 points regularly that Johnson did in Week 1. Injury or not, he’s a bust.

Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions - See Calvin Johnson. Stafford was ranked in the top five by the Fantasy Pros consensus picks heading into the season. Why wouldn’t you have those kinds of expectations from Stafford? He finished in the top five last season and could have finished in the top 2 if Johnson didn’t go down those last four weeks. Those last four weeks however should have been a warning.

While Stafford has gotten hot lately with Golden Tate, it is clear that he is not nearly as valuable without a healthy Johnson. The warning here is that if you take Stafford, you better be confident that Johnson stays healthy. That is a lot to ask, yet that is the reality here. Last year’s number four QB is not even in the top ten at this point, behind guys like Ryan Tannehill, Joe Flacco, and the struggling Matt Ryan.

Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons - Jones had a lot of hype coming into the season. He was on fire last season until he broke his foot and missed the final eleven games. Fantasy analysts and owners looked at those first four games, placing those as expectations of a healthy Julio Jones. They have been disappointed.

What analysts and owners never accounted for was how bad the Falcons offense was going to be this year. Jones has also had some minor injuries but for a guy expected to finish well within the top five or six WRs, he has only three TDs on the year, and those came in a two-week span in Weeks 2 and 3. He ranks fourteenth right now and there are no signs that I can see of the Falcons turning it around. Sure, he will have some big weeks like Week 3 but he has no shot at this point of meeting the high expectations set on him coming into the year.

Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers - Lacy is a tough one because there were a few signs here that said to proceed with caution. The biggest sign was injury-history yet none of Lacy’s struggles seem to be as a result of any injuries. In other words, this guy is just a flat out bust.

Lacy finished seventh in fantasy RBs in standard scoring leagues last season. Lacy was ranked fifth among all RBs at Fantasy Pros who all saw big numbers ahead for the Packer. Lacy is out of the top ten and ranks sixteen among RBs today. There is some hope here as Lacy has turned it around in recent weeks, yet he killed you early on with a combined 51 points through the first six weeks. He has put up 30 in the last two weeks so it may be a bit early to call him a bust, although it may be too late for Lacy owners who are out of the playoff hunt.

Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers - It is funny in retrospect how one preseason game fooled the entire fantasy football community of experts and owners. A late preseason outing shot Martin right up to the top of fantasy RB rankings heading into the season. Martin was ranked ninth in the consensus Fantasy Pro rankings with many claiming Martin could finish even higher.

Fast-forward to Week 10 and Martin is now number-three on the RB depth chart behind Bobby Rainey and Charles Sims. Martin has a total of 23 points through 10 games…23 points! Carlos Hyde, Shonn Greene, and James Starks all have more than 23 points. Yes he’s been hurt but that doesn’t excuse his performance all season long. It’s been pitiful.

AJ Green, Cincinnati Bengals - This is a tough one because Green’s lack of productivity is attributed to his injuries but again, that doesn’t make a difference if you are a Green owner. This guy was ranked in the top 15 overall by most experts and had big expectations coming into the season. 3 TDs through Week 10 is not going to cut it.

Keenan Allen, San Diego Chargers - After taking me to a title last season I fell for the Keenan Allen hype. I took him early like most did who drafted him and was rewarded with one of the biggest sophomore slumps for a wide receiver I have ever seen. Allen has only one TD on the season and only two double-digit games in one of the most potent offenses in the league. Most experts had him ranked right outside of the top 10 but the numbers are a big disappointment from a guy that was within the top fifteen last season.

Giovanni Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals - Oh Gio, how you let your owners down. Gio was a hot name coming into the season. Many experts predicted big numbers in the run-heavy Hue Jackson offense for the Bengal. Through three weeks it looked like he was the real deal, but one week does not make a season.

Gio has missed two games with an injury and has been in and out of the lineup in weeks prior to that. Gio has given his owners a mere 39 points since Week 5 while his backup has given his owners 30 in just two weeks. My hunch is that Gio is going to be hampered by these injuries all season long and while the potential is there for a healthy Gio, that Gio won’t be back until next season.

Vernon Davis, San Francisco 49ers - I had to throw a tight end in here and it was either Davis or Jordan Cameron. I’d say that Davis is by far the bigger disappointment. Most people forget that Davis finished number two overall in tight ends last season ahead of Julius Thomas. Davis is not even in the top 20 tight ends in standard scoring leagues and has a total of 25 points through Week 10 with 16 of those coming in Week 1.

Nobody could have predicted the reduced role that Davis has taken in the offense. He is a non-factor. I also think that he is a victim of bad QB play. Colin Kaepernick has not progressed at all and has even regressed a bit at times. The team is in disarray thanks to a lame duck coach and their running game is just non-existent.

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Fantasy Football: Mark Sanchez Returns to the Waiver Wire

November 05, 2014 By: Category: Fantasy Football, NFL | NCAA Football, Sports

The Sanchize is back! Mark Sanchez has taken his familiar seat on the waiver wire after snagging the Philadelphia Eagles starting job. With only a few weeks to go Sanchez could bring you many rewards but what is the risk of rolling with the former Jets QB?

It’s a familiar theme every season. Mark Sanchez has a good game or two and he becomes the waiver wire darling of fantasy football experts around the globe. We have seen this show since 2009 but this time is different. While his colors are the same, the situation and team around him could be the missing pieces Sanchez has been looking for.

Let’s look at this realistically. You aren’t going to get a better QB off of the waiver wire this week. Your other choices are probably Josh McCown and maybe Michael Vick. Most of the good QBs are taken and there is a pretty good chance that you have a decent QB if you are in the playoff hunt. Do you really want to risk your fantasy season in Week 10 by making such a drastic change?

There are some good reasons to pick up Sanchez. He is in one of the most fantasy-friendly offenses for a QB in the NFL. Chip Kelly isn’t going to change anything for Mark Sanchez. Kelly produces the number five passing offense in the NFL. Sanchez has also never had this much talent around him, although he had a nice supporting cast his rookie season. He has never had the deep threats that the Eagles give him, and never had a receiver with the skills that Jeremy Maclin has. This situation is set up for Sanchez to succeed.

It is fun to pile one Sanchez but he had a ton of potential when he came into the NFL. He was young and I think his immaturity did him in (remember Sanchez eating hot dogs on the sidelines?). People are quick to forget that Sanchez was one game away from the Super Bowl his rookie season. I always thought the departures of Alan Faneca and Thomas Jones in Sanchez’s sophomore season really hurt him, specifically Faneca. The running game he was able to utilize was out of town and all of the pressure was on the passing game. A passing game mind you that featured selfish receivers and an offense that just never seemed to click.

There are also some good reasons not to take Sanchez. He is still new to this offense. He hasn’t had a full season in Chip’s offense and I think you are expecting a lot from a guy taking over a team in Week 10. He mentally breaks down quickly. When Sanchez is on, he is on but when he is off, he is really off. Sanchez has never been able to work himself out of a funk. His arm may not have the juice to take advantage of his new weapons.

Finally it should be noted that Sanchez has a really rough schedule when the playoffs begin. He will be playing teams weeks 12-15 that rank within the top 15 defenses against fantasy QBs. He has the Titans, Cowboys twice, and the Seahawks. You probably wouldn’t play many QBs outside of your top 8 against those defenses. So if you expect to make a savvy grab with Sanchez and use him for the playoffs, you better understand that the schedule is one of the worst against fantasy QBs at a time when you need a QB you can count on. The schedule alone would have me thinking twice about Sanchez.

Was Sanchez that bad or was he overcompensating for a weak offense in New York? We will find out shortly. Whether you should get Sanchez or not entirely depends upon your needs. If you are desperate or have a guy on a bye week, you may want to take a shot with him against Carolina. Just understand you are only going to get two fantasy QB-friendly defenses with him before you run into problems. Otherwise take your shot but I would proceed with much more caution than those proclaiming Sanchez as the second coming are willing to admit.

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