Fantasy Football Diary 10: Lucking Out

If you read my entry last week you may remember that I was a little pessimistic going into the week. My team was riddled with injuries and I was taking on the 2nd-ranked team in the league. I also was, and continue to be, neck and neck with about half of the league for the six playoff spots.

I wasn’t happy.

So what happened?

I won.

Somehow.

And by somehow I pretty much mean, my team did just enough to beat out my opponent, who had some major letdowns last week. But more on that later.

I sit at 5th in the All Pro League at 6-4. I share my 6-4 record with three other teams (the Kalamazoo Killer Kangaroos, The Cuban Raft Riders and The Trumpeting Platypi) and that pretty much makes up the playoffs. I sit precariously on the edge of obscurity with three quality fantasy running backs (Darren McFadden, Darren Sproles, and Demarco Murray) all still fighting injuries.

The All Pro league is a 12-team league with, for our purposes, standard NFL.com scoring. We also have a couple extra bench spots and start a QB, two RBs, three WRs, one TE, one K and one DEF. We don’t play a flex spot… at least this season. Other league information can be found in my first entry here.

Current standings:

My roster has changed a bit this week. I decided to be active on the waiver wire, drop some players I wouldn’t use, hopefully, and add some guys to help me for the long haul. I dropped QB Matt Schaub, TE Delanie Walker, WR Ryan Broyles and RB Rashad Jennings for the Redskins D/ST, TE Dwayne Allen, RB Chris Ivory and RB Felix Jones respectively.

Walker was worthless, Broyles wouldn’t ever start on my team, Jennings was very much expendable and Schaub was a backup to Brady. I needed the Redskins defense to fill in with the Vikings on a bye, Allen was needed to cover for another “no-show” by TE Aaron Hernandez, and Ivory and Jones hand-cuff Sproles and Murray, who are still recovering from injury. I also need to find someone to fill-in for my K Blair White, so I may drop the Vikings defense just for the week to pick up…well… someone. I’m open to suggestions.

Nevermind, I picked up K Shaun Suisham.

Here’s my roster as of November 18th.

Last Week…

Last week I played Scoregasm and somehow won, 87.38-69.80. There’s a reason why I called this “Lucking Out”. Take a look at the Gamecenter below and you’ll know what I’m talking about. How else do I beat a team with QB Eli Manning, WR Victor Cruz, WR Miles Austin, RB Michael Turner and, heck, even TE Rob Gronkowski?

Every one of those players underperforms.

Cruz and Manning were worthless against the Bengals, of all teams, and Turner did nothing in one of the most favorable matchups a running back can have. Austin and Gronkowski also didn’t do enough to make a difference. Throw in my sorry performances from Jennings, RB Shonn Greene and Walker and, wow, I should not have won this one. All of my wide receivers putting up over 13 points and my kicker, Blair Walsh contributing 14 points on his own were just enough to pull out the victory.

The Gamecenter:

For this week…

Last week I watched the intro to Madden 13 before picking my lineup and I decided to let Ray Lewis give me continued motivation this week. On the plus side, I now feel like I could take on the world.

This week I play against the ginger snaps. The ginger snaps are 3-7 and on a five-game losing streak, but last week, they just lost to the Platypi despite putting up 112.66 points. While the ginger snaps are struggling, they have a bunch of talented players who should put up good numbers this week.

QB Matt Stafford is playing against Green Bay, and while Stafford has struggled this season, he has been playing better lately. Stafford could potentially put up solid numbers.

RB Jamaal Charles is playing Cincinnati. For me, that is a bad combination because Charles has immense talent and Cincy has been allowing points to running backs. RB Vick Ballard is in a tough matchup.

Wide receivers Dez Bryant and Mike Wallace have big-time ability and aren’t in bad matchups, while WR Armon Binns simply hasn’t been very productive lately.

TE Greg Olson is coming off a great game last week, scoring 22.20 points (over 100 receiving yards, two touchdowns). Kicker David Akers and the Ravens D/ST should put up solid numbers in what figure to be defensive showdowns.

My team doesn’t look bad this week. QB Tom Brady is in a matchup against a Colts defense that should struggle to stop him.

My running backs are still a bit of a mess. I’m rolling with RB Felix Jones against the Browns. Jones has put up double-digit points in back to back weeks and has the potential to be successful this week against the 27th-ranked rush defense. RB Shonn Greene is playing against the Rams defense, and while I am very skeptical of Greene, he does get a large portion of the carries. I was considering RB Darren Sproles, but I’m thinking he does only a little bit as he still works his way back from hand surgery.

Wide receivers have been my team’s strength in recent weeks and the matchups could make that a reality once again. WR A.J. Green is playing against Kansas City, who could struggle stopping the top receiver in fantasy land. WR Demaryius Thomas is a must-start against anyone, including San Diego. I was up in the air between WR Denarius Moore and Randall Cobb. Both are considered by many to be must-starts. Moore is playing against the awful Saints pass defense and Cobb is against Detroit, but has scored five touchdowns in his last three games.

Not bad.

I’m going to roll with Cobb.

The rest of my team is just fill-in on a bye/injury. Allen is filling in for Hernandez. I hope Allen does something after I watched Delanie Walker do absolutely nothing last week. Suisham has a decent matchup, if there is one for a kicker, and I actually think he will do well without Roethlisberger playing. The Redskins are purely playing for me because of their matchup against the Eagles and rookie QB Nick Foles.

If I win this week, I would move to 7-4 and further legitimize my playoff spot. If I lose, I have quite the scramble to turn things around with two more weeks before the playoffs begin. What concerns me, is that whenever I have favorable matchups and should win, my team falls flat on their face, the other team puts up huge numbers and I am left wondering what happened on Tuesday morning. If I’m left for dead, at least in my opinion, my team puts it all together. For that reason alone, I don’t like my chances this week.

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