Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Keeper League Confidential: The Best Offense (Is a Good Defense)

One thing I notice about most novice fantasy football owners is that they focus almost exclusively on offensive players (QBs, RBs, WRs, TEs) and treat defense like an afterthought. In fact, some of them go as far as to worry about kickers more than defense (don't even get me started). Well, I put a lot of stock in defense, but they let me down this week, so the winning streak--all two games of it--is over.

Demarcus Ware sacked the Zombies almost single-handedly!

My team actually did all right overall, but my defense was outscored 67-34 by my brother's team. Since the Zombies lost by 12 points, I'd say the defense was the big difference maker. But really, my brother's defense was propelled by career games by Demarcus Ware (11 tackles and 4 sacks) and Reggie Nelson (5 tackles and a pick-6). Those two guys alone scored 38 points!

Anyway, those are the breaks when you play a fantasy version of a real game. In one week, my team fell from 2nd place in the division to last (or 5th) place. Ouch!


Week 9 Tip: Keep Trying

Luckily, I'm not mathematically eliminated from the playoffs yet. If you are, however, keep trying. You probably won't feel the urge to invest money in trades or pick-ups--unless you're trying to build your team for next year (if you're in a keeper league)--but you can still try to play spoiler by making sure you start the best line-up you have to start. That means benching guys who are on byes and starting guys who aren't--and then putting the best players back after their byes. Just keep trying!


Waiver Wire Watch: Week 9

QB: Tarvaris Jackson, Sea. Quick admission: I've been a Tarvaris Jackson fan since his days at Minnesota. When I first heard of him heading to Seattle with Sidney Rice and the Minnesota offensive coordinator, I thought, "Jackpot!" But then Seattle's O-line got banged up severely and Sidney Rice too--and even Mike Williams. But now, Seattle's found Doug Baldwin and Ben Obomanu--with Rice returning. So maybe now it's time!

RB: Somebody from San Diego maybe? On Monday night, everybody started writing the name Curtis Brinkley on their cheat sheets, but then, he was tested for concussion symptoms after the game. Mike Tolbert and Ryan Matthews are banged up, which means there's the possibility that one of my long-time favorite sleepers, Jacob Hester, could be a surprise waiting to happen next weekend. Stay tuned.

WR: Kevin Walter, Hou. I mentioned the Seattle WRs above, but Walter is also getting a lot of love while Andre Johnson's been out. Another person to consider is Early Doucet in Arizona.

TE: Joel Dreesen, Hou. Speaking of Houston receivers, Dreesen has caught 3 TDs in the past 4 games (and one of those was a 100-yard effort).

Jarret Johnson, is there anyone on the Ravens defense not worth picking up?

DL: Jarret Johnson, Bal. It's always a good idea to grab a LB who also counts as a DL. Hello, Jarret Johnson, who's made 21 tackles, 2 sacks and a TD in the past 4 games. If he's available as a DL, snatch him up and start him.

LB: Leroy Hill, Sea. He started off slow, but during the past 5 games, he's recorded 41 tackles and a sack. Not too shabby.

DB: Brandon Flowers, KC. Flowers had a great game on Monday Night, but it could've been even better had he not dropped an interception that literally hit him in stride. With Tamba Hali putting on the pass rush, Flowers will continue to get interception opportunities.

My kicker scored one more point than kickers who were on their bye. Makes me wonder why I even bother picking up kickers for the bye week.


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