Football has begun! Well, sort of. It’s the pre-season. Usually a time that only die-hard fans pay attention to, but because of the lockout – it’s really the only thing us die-hard fantasy football fem-agers have to gain an advantage above the boys who seem to get their football news intravenously. So here’s a wrap-up of pre-season takeaways from this weekend. Hope they help!
1. Keep an Eye on Ben Tate. In a deep league? Lousy drafter? Keep an eye on Ben Tate, junior running back for the Houston Texans. The Texans have some big name players – Andre Johnson, and of course Arian Foster, but they’re also like junior Saints – they like to pass the ball around, they like to get everyone involved – it’s very communal, I love it. That is why Ben Tate may not be a bad option – he’s fast, he’s cute, and he just scored his first touchdown. This weekend Benny Boy showed off his charisma, and he might just be the sleeper you need to impress the pants off those nay-saying boys.
2. The Cowboys Still Suck. I hate the Cowboys, but more than that, I hate Tony Romo. It really has nothing to do with that sham he pulled with Jessica Simpson, because I am not a fan of her either. I just think Romo’s got a huge chip on his shoulder, and that he’s an over-valued a-hole. And he throws picks. Tony Romo is just one of those built up, overloaded players – half the time he performs, but half the time he chokes. He’s probably got the same record in the bedroom. But regardless of his bedroom habits, he’s not a stable quarterback pick, which does not bode well for his fellow Cowboys. Players on a team without a true leader stink; like the saying goes, birds of a “feather flock together,” and unfortunately with Romo, you’ve got a pretty big turkey. Drafting a quarterback late? Stick with Schaub, Flacco or Orton. Jeez, even that douche Cutler’s better than Romo.
3. Dan Carpenter Should be Your Kicker. No one really cares about the kicker position – it should be your last pick, but who you pick last does matter. Generally, my philosophy in kicker picking is the opposite of my general strategy – go with the kicker on the worst team. The worst team is also going to be the team that takes field goal attempts so that they get points on the board. The worst teams aren’t trying to win; they’re trying to stop the embarrassment. Case in point – Miami. They often let Carpenter kick from the 50 yard line – and most of the time, he gets it in. That’s 5 points right there. His performance was pretty solid this weekend, as it was last season, as it will continue to be all season long. So while I would stay away from Brandon Marshall, Chad Henne, and Reggie Bush (see #2 for reasons why) – picking Carpenter wouldn’t be the worst thing you could do.
4. The Eagles Defense is Way Overrated. If you’re in a team defense league, don’t waste a 9th round pick on the Eagles. Their defense is way too young, and judging from that downright awful playing Thursday night, they have some serious sh*t to work on. So let some other sucker pick this defense early, and then trash talk to him endlessly. It’ll feel really good.
5. Watch Out for Those Pre-Season Injuries. If you’re relying on Draft Kits from Sports Illustrated or ESPN, proceed with caution. While Draft Kits give good advice, once they are posted on the Internet they rarely get edited to reflect pre-season injuries, and that could lead you to fantasy football shame. Case in point: Jahvid Best – top 20 running back, should have been a second round pick – already has a concussion. So does Rashad Jennings. TE Kevin Boss is sidelined because of a sprained knee, and is week to week. Poor old Peyton won’t even get the chance to test his chops this pre-season. And while no one was going to draft Jason Campbell anyway, he suffered a pretty big hit on Saturday.
Keep reading Jockess for your player updates and you’ll be (a little more) ready to go on draft day!