Fantasy Football: What Did We Learn?

We learned stuff from Week 1 right? Don’t let any amount of beer, chicken wings, blackjack or Ladies of the Night distract you. That’s why you pay all that money for your big TV and the Sunday Ticket. Sure we learned stuff that we already knew. Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Drew Brees are good. Kerry Collins is not. So what did we learn?

You don’t waste an early draft pick on a kicker or D/ST. I say it every year. In my main league, the Steelers were the 32nd ranked D/ST with -3 points. The first kicker drafted was Nate Kaeding. He tore his ACL on the opening kickoff and is out for the season. But that’s ok. Because THERE’S ALWAYS A KICKER OR D/ST ON THE WAIVER WIRE! Unless you play in a very deep league, in which case, what do you need me for? You must be pretty good at this already. Going into this season I tried to figure out what the effects of the lockout would be on the actual NFL games. In the end I figured that there would be a ton of injuries and that offenses would struggle more than defenses after such a long period of inactivity. I got the injuries thing right. But after one week it looks like the offenses are way ahead of the defenses for the most part. Perhaps the new limitations on padded practices have had an effect. Or it could be that defenses generally play more rookies and younger players who really needed the off-season programs to get them ready. Maybe this kickoff thing isn’t a big deal after all. After all of the complaining, it seemed every kick returner was returning kicks from five, six maybe even EIGHT yards deep in the end zone. And they had more success than failures. It was actually kind of exciting watching guys try to return kicks from so deep. It looks like while the length of the average kickoff return might decline, the total number of kickoff returns for TD’s should actually climb. Punt returners also went wild in Week 1. Some of this has to be attributed to the number of rookies that play on special teams. With so few practices, it’s not surprising that special teams units across the league were struggling. You wait to draft a quarterback in fantasy football. Sure the Big 5 (Rodgers, Vick, Brady, Brees & Rivers) were great in Week 1. But so were Cam Netwon, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Rex Grossman. Not to mention Matthew Stafford, Jay Cutler and Kevin Kolb. There are ALWAYS quality QB’s available in the middle-to-late rounds of fantasy drafts. You always start your studs. There were owners out there who tried to get tricky and bench Ray Rice. Not a good idea. When you draft a player (especially in the first few rounds) you are drafting his production for THE ENTIRE SEASON. The only way to ensure that you get that production is to PLAY HIM EVERY WEEK HE IS HEALTHY. It’s a good idea to handcuff RB’s you draft in the early rounds, if possible and/or practical. Ben Tate and Cadillac Williams stand as Exhibit A and Exhibit B at this point. Good luck fighting the rest of the owners in your league on the waiver wire. When you’re in a Survivor/Eliminator pool (picking games) don’t get cute in Week 1. Pretty much half of all entries everywhere got eliminated by picking the Chiefs or Browns. Had the Cardinals lost, it would have been closer to 2/3 of entries. Nobody knows very much in Week 1. Go with the best possible team early in the year. Even if that means using the Patriots in Week 1 and the Packers in Week 2. The Sunday Ticket on Playstation 3 was an excellent idea, poorly executed. Nothing worked correctly until the late games were nearly over, and even then the quality was not nearly what you would hope for $340. Sony and DirecTV acknowledged the problem but it’s unknown if they will compensate customers. If you were affected, use the Google to find out who to contact. Rookie QB’s are wildly unpredictable. Cam Newton starred in Week 1 and could do so again in Week 2. Or he could literally get you no points. Newton’s running ability should make him safer than most rookie QB’s, but don’t go crazy. He should be owned in all leagues, but if you can sell-high, I would do so. Ron Jaworski dropped an s-bomb live on Monday Night Football (MNF) and it was great. Can’t we get a football game on HBO or something? Do you have any idea how many f-bombs Gruden would drop if given the chance? Can we at least get a director’s cut with Samuel L. Jackson calling the games. Or Dave Chappelle doing his Samuel Jackson calling the games? Donovan McNabb did not look good. In a new team, in a new offensive system, he probably shouldn’t have looked very good. But he’s a veteran QB and he looked every bit as bad as Kerry Collins. Both of these guys are going to present problems to their offensive teammates. Well, expect Adrian Peterson. McNabb might be able to keep Percy Harvin relevant while Collins just locks onto Reggie Wayne every play. You can’t go selling the farm yet, especially with the Colts. But it doesn’t look good. I don’t know how you start Austin Collie or Pierre Garcon, much less Michael Jenkins or Visanthe Shiancoe.

Feel free to follow along on the Twitter. More to come as the preparation for Week 2 continues.

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