Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Fantasy Football Week 5: That was almost a disastrous decision

Or better titled: I'm starting Romo and T.O. and Nick Folk against Buffalo. How can I go wrong?

Which, really, I'm still asking myself. Starting that trio against Buffalo should have been the best plan ever, and yet it took Folk's last second (and for that matter, second) 53-yard field goal for me to win my fantasy matchup. The one week I decided to start Romo over Brady, and Romo nearly self-destructed with five interceptions and a fumble. Brady, of course, had his usual near-perfect game. This is what I get for taunting my friend who wanted me to trade Romo to him for Donovan McNabb.

I like Romo, though. One of the post-game interviews with him went something like this:

Reporter: How were you able to pull yourself together after you threw those four interceptions in the first half?

Romo: I had four interceptions in the first half?

Reporter: Yes. Well, actually, you had five overall, but only four in the first half.

Romo: Oh, I thought I had like seven in the first half.

Yes, the usually dismal Buffalo defense had five interceptions, two of which they ran back for touchdowns, and a fumble recovery. Special teams ran in another touchdown. Which means that the Buffalo offense, even with "the media drools all over me" Trent Edwards, mustered a mere three points. My husband was quite infuriated when he realized that he would have won his fantasy matchup had he started Buffalo's defense over Chicago's defense. Go figure.

Vinny Testaverde, yeah...

...He's the best quarterback in the American Football Conference Eastern Division...

Okay, so the song is a little outdated, but with the way David Carr has looked thus far this season, I might be willing to sing it loudly and proudly.

I'm also beginning to think that Carr likes getting sacked, because, well, he gets sacked all the time. Sometimes he gets sacked because the line doesn't protect him well enough, and sometimes he gets sacked for reasons that I haven't quite figured out. I applauded the Panthers when they acquired Carr during the off-season, figuring that his lackluster performance in Houston was due to the fact that he was, well, playing for Houston. But seeing as how Houston doesn't look quite so horrible with Matt Schaub, and Carr has not looked significantly better playing for Carolina, I'm beginning to think that I should stop making excuses for him.

So...Vinny Testaverde, yeah...

Sing it!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

UNC v. Miami: Everyone takes the blame

I love the unwritten understanding amongst sports fans that each person--no matter how removed from the playing field--has the ability to affect the outcome of games. It's something that is acknowledged by seemingly all sports fans, and not understood at all by people who couldn't care less about sports.

Yesterday's UNC-Miami game played at Kenan Stadium is a perfect example. UNC was leading 27-0 at halftime after playing a nearly flawless first half. Then, disaster struck. My brother and his girlfriend moved down from their seats in Section 209 to sit with me and my husband in Section 112. The daugther of the people sitting next to me came over from the student section to sit with her parents. I moved down one row so I could sit next to my husband instead of behind him. And boom. 27-0 turned into 27-20. Really fast. So, my brother and his girlfriend moved back to Section 209. The other girl moved back to the student section. I moved up one row and sat behind my husband. Crisis averted, we won 33-27. So you can clearly see how the people in my section were responsible for this near collapse, only to readjust so UNC could pull out the victory.

Right. It sounds oh so ludicrous. But almost everyone I talked to after the game had their own story about how they were responsible for what had happened. I love sports fans.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

It would have been nice... have been able to watch the Carolina Hurricanes' season opener on TV. But hey, whatever.

Someone explain Notre Dame's troubles to me, please.

We all know that Notre Dame football is awful this year. They've started their season 0-5, a program first. Experts think it's pretty much a given that they'll go at least 0-8 before seeing their first win, and many think it's possible that they'll go 0-12. It's a common story for, say, Duke, but at this point, it seems entirely likely that Duke will beat them when they play on November 17.

How did the Fighting Irish come to hit rock bottom? I've discussed Carolina's disastrous 8-20 baketball season on this blog before. I know about the perfect storm of circumstances that brought about that challenging year: Gutheridge had done a poor job recruiting because everyone knew he was going to retire; Doherty then took over a mediocre team who didn't like his interpersonal skills. And got the season that every Tar Heel fan loves to sweep under the carpet and every Duke and NCSU fan loves to rehash every chance they get.

But are those the circumstances surrounding Notre Dame? Weiss is in his third year as head coach, is coming off a 10-3 season with a Sugar Bowl appearance (albeit a loss), and has a strong recruiting class coming in next year. Compare to UNC: the 8-20 year was in Doherty's second year as coach, coming off a 26-7 season (albeit with a disappointing second half of the season and a second round loss in the NCAA tournament), and with a great recruiting class coming in.

Hey, I don't know much about Notre Dame football, so I'm asking someone to please explain to me how this is happening. Inquiring minds want to know.

No, I'm not trading Romo. Or Brady.

Still undefeated for the time being. I got an email from my Fantasy League informing me that another manager had proposed a trade:

Donovan McNabb and Chris Cooley for Tony Romo. Or if I couldn't part with Romo, Tom Brady.

I had to tell him that:

1) Donovan McNabb had been on my "no draft list" before the season started,


2) his performance against the New York Football Giants didn't exactly make me rethink that decision,


3) Chris Cooley doesn't sweeten the deal as I already have Kellen Winslow and Donald Driver,


4) giving him Romo or Brady would just mean that he would beat me with whichever one I parted with the week that I play him.

So, as you have probably already figured out, I rejected the trade.

But his proposal has made me wonder about what I should do with Romo on a weekly basis. Don't get me wrong, I'm not going to get rid of him, but it seems like an awful waste to bench him the entire season except for New England's bye week. What to do, what to do? It might end in a coin toss this weekend.

I also realized that I have managed to build a bench that can outperform my starters. With the exception of Romo, both of my defenses, and Shayne Graham, I have acquired my entire bench off of waivers since Week 2. I think I did a good job, but it makes my decision-making tougher.

Decisions that will not end in coin tosses are as follows:

1) Cedric Benson: benched. I don't think I need to explain this one.

2) Sammy Morris: starting. I don't think I need to explain this one, either.

3) T.O.: starting, as usual, although it amazes (and frustrates) me that Dallas scored 35 points and T.O. racked up an anemic 33 yards. But HEY, I hear he threw an amazing block enabling Patrick Crayton to score. More on Crayton in a minute...

4) Joe Jurevicius: benched, as usual, although in retrospect, I should have started him over T.O. last week.

Decisions that probably will not end in coin tosses but who knows:

1) Donald Driver: benched. Green Bay's playing against Chicago, who still concerns me despite their poorer than expected performance thus far this season. Ah, expectations.

2) Shaun McDonald: starting. He's playing against Washington, and Detroit loves to throw.

Now back to Crayton...based on last Sunday's performance, 31,055 Yahoo! Fantasy Football managers added him to their teams this week. This reminds me of a few years ago when seemingly every other manager added DeShaun Foster to their teams after he had one great game. Being an avid Panthers follower, I could have told all of them that the move was probably futile, seeing as how Foster is dreadfully inconsistent. And I'm sure many of them figured that out a week or two later, and perhaps ended up dropping him in the end. Now, I'm not saying that Crayton is the same type of player as Foster, but it does surprise me that so many people are willing to pick a guy up after one good game.