Like Fred, I’ve been a bit lax in my fantasy football updates. After suffering the upset of the year Week 7 to Brian Fraley and the No Bid Contracts, I’ve been on fire, taking the regular-season title outright at 11-2, scoring the most points at 1536.69 (100+ 12 of 13 weeks) and earning a first-round bye in the playoffs.
I drew first blood on the Warriors (7-6), with Frank Gore dropping 144 yards rushing, 34 yards receiving and a touchdown on both the Seahags and the Warriors. The Warriors came out to play, with 7 players going into double digits, led by Ladell Betts’ 16.20 (119 yards rushing, 43 yards receiving), but they didn’t come out to win. The coupe de grace and my ticket to the championship game was delivered by LaDanian Tomlinson, who contributed 199 yards on the ground and 2 touchdowns to obliterate the all-time scoring record, the Chefs and my opponent 126.06 to 102.02.
Speaking of Fred, TheDebateTeam (11-3) pulled off a miraculous comeback on the strength of Peyton Manning’s 4-touchdown, 37.89-ponit performance to knock off the feel-good story of the year, Sanders’ Sabers (7-8), 106.09 to 100.23 and set up the rematch of the titans. Rex Grossman (26.03) and Steven Jackson (24.70) couldn’t deliver enough for Owen.
In the 5th-place game, the City Workers (9-6) used a dominating 26.60-point performance from Marvin Harrison to pull away from the Killer Boars (9-6), 82.06 to 70.30. Harrison’s teammate, Reggie Wayne, led the Boars with 14.40.
Up next: the third-place game between Sanders’ Sabers and Warriors, and The Cheddar Bowl featuring your humble host’s team, Spiraling Colby, against TheDebateTeam. Time for an extended look at the Rematch of the Titans:
QB – Matt Leinart (at San Francisco)/Alex Smith (vs Arizona) against Peyton Manning (at Houston) – The good news for me; both the Niners’ and Cards’ pass defenses (27th and 30th) suck. The bad; so does the Texans’ (24th). The ugly; the youngsters are nowhere near Manning in demonstrated ability, and I can’t play them both.
RB – LaDanian Tomlinson (at Seattle)/Willie Parker (vs Baltimore)/Frank Gore (vs Arizona) against Jamal Lewis (at Pittsburgh)/Brian Westbrook (at Dallas)/Reggie Bush (at the Giants) – The Parker/Lewis matchup is a stout defense wash (Parker’s better, but so are the OldBrowns; #2 against the rush versus #5 for Pittsburgh). All-World LT looks to run wild against #22 Seattle, and Gore faces a mid-pack (#16) Card defense. Westbrook can expect tough sledding on the ground against Dallas (#7 rush/#20 pass), and Bush can expect the same against the G-men (#11 rush/#28 pass).
WR – Terry Glenn (vs Philadelphia)/Lee Evans (vs Tennessee) against Andre Johnson (vs Indianapolis)/Chris Chambers (vs the Jets) – I’m hoping the Eagles (#12 against the pass) are too preoccupied stopping TO a second time to worry about She. Evans looks to continue his resurgence against a porous Titan pass defense (#25). Johnson will be going up against the strength of the Colts’ defense (#2 against the pass, but #32 against the run), while Chambers faces a middling Jets’ pass defense (#18).
TE – Randy McMichael (vs the Jets) against Owen Daniels (vs Indianapolis) – See the appropriate commentary in the WR section.
K – Jeff Wilkins (vs Washington) against John Kasay (at Atlanta) – Both kickers are in domes, so weather won’t be a factor.
Defense – Kansas City (at Oakland) against Buffalo (at Tennessee) – They’re next to each other in the middle of defensive rankings, but Oakland has NO offense.
The bench – Smith/Leinart (whichever QB I don’t start)/Greg Jennings (WR-vs Minnesota)/Marcus Robinson (WR-at Green Bay)/Ben Watson (TE-at Jacksonville)/John Carney (K-at the Giants)/Green Bay (Defense-vs Minnesota) against Philip Rivers (QB-at Seattle)/Wali Lundy (RB-at Indianapolis)/Roy Williams (WR-vs Chicago)/Reche Caldwell (WR-at Jacksonville)/Bo Scaife (TE-at Buffalo)/Philadelphia (Defense-at Dallas) – I know that the bench doesn’t score any points, but they’re insurance against injuries popping up midweek. Let’s review them anyway.
For the Colby, I’ll probably choose the wrong QB to bench :-) . Jennings has hit the rookie wall hard. Robinson and Watson missed Week 16 with injuries and face unfavorable matchups even if they were healthy. Carney’s kicking out of doors this week. I figure I rode the Green Bay defensive train as far as they’re good for, especially with the other matchup I put together with some post-season maneuvering.
For the Debaters, Rivers has the misfortune of backing up Manning. Lundy has disappeared from the Texans’ rotation. Williams faces his second tough defensive backfield in 2 weeks, this time with a real secondary coach back there. Caldwell appears to have fallen out of favor with Tom Brady. Scaife missed this past week with an ankle injury and is expected to be questionable for this week. Philly faces a potent Cowboys offense.