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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 14 RBs

Posted on 03 December 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

If this week’s running back rankings prove anything, it’s that everyone had pretty much an equal shot on draft day at putting together a winner. In fact, it’s probably those who drafted in the top 5 in most leagues who are the ones disappointed. Regardless, the running back rankings are littered with guys who would have been available in the 5th round and beyond, even in the deepest of leagues. Furthermore, the top 20 has been changing up dramatically from week to week, so every week is a chance to catch lightning in a bottle.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 14. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 14 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 14 lineup decisions.

 

Week 14 Fantasy Running Back Power Rankings

 

RB Power Rankings Archive34567 - 891011 - 12 - 13

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Thomas Jones (4) – NYJ – 1088 yds 11 TD & 161 yds 2 TD rec

 

2. Michael Turner (1) – ATL – 1208 yds 13 TD

 

3. Brian Westbrook (11) – PHI – 657 yds 8 TD & 233 yds 4 TD rec

 

4. Matt Forte (3) – CHI – 1012 yds 6 TD & 358 yds 4 TD rec

 

5. Adrian Peterson (6) – MIN – 1311 yds 9 TD

 

6. DeAngelo Williams (10) – CAR – 955 yds 11 TD & 112 yds 2 TD rec

 

7. Brandon Jacobs (5) – NYG – 950 yds 12 TD

 

8. Clinton Portis (2) – WAS – 1228 yds 7 TD

 

9. Marion Barber (7) – DAL – 870 yds 7 TD & 366 yds 2 TD rec

 

10. Steve Slaton (16) – HOU – 904 yds 8 TD & 250 yds 1 TD rec

 

11. Reggie Bush (NR) – NO – 294 yds 2 TD & 298 yds 3 TD rec

 

12. Steven Jackson (NR) – ST.L – 619 yds 4 TD & 275 yds 0 TD rec

 

13. Chris Johnson (15) – TEN – 958 yds 7 TD & 227 yds 1 TD rec

 

14. Frank Gore (8) – SF – 926 yds 6 TD & 354 yds 1 TD rec

 

15. Marshawn Lynch (13) – BUF – 844 yds 7 TD & 283 yds 1 TD rec

 

16. LaDanian Tomlinson (12) – SD – 794 yds 6 TD & 371 yds 1 TD rec

 

17. Maurice Jones-Drew (9) – JAX – 552 yds 11 TD & 415 yds 0 TD rec

 

18. Ronnie Brown (14) – MIA – 690 yds 10 TD & 19 yds 1 TD pass

 

19. LenDale White (20) – TEN – 575 yds 13 TD

 

20. Larry Johnson (18) – KC – 657 yds 4 TD

 

Dropped From Rankings: Joseph Addai – IND; Willie Parker – PIT

 

RBs Who Should Be Better Than Usual In Week 14: Adrian Peterson @ DET; Larry Johnson @ DEN; Steve Slaton @ GB; LaDanian Tomlinson vs. OAK; Ryan Grant vs. HOU; Thomas Jones @ SF; Matt Forte vs. JAX

 

RBs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 14 Match Ups: Peyton Hillis vs. KC; Chester Taylor @ DET; Tim Hightower vs. ST.L; Ryan Moats @ GB; Cedric Benson @ IND; Leon Washington @ SF

 

RBs With Tough Week 14 Match Ups: Clinton Portis @ BAL; Brian Westbrook @ NYG; DeAngelo Williams & Jonathan Stewart vs. TB; Marion Barber @ PIT; Frank Gore vs. NYJ; Kevin Smith vs. MIN; Marshawn Lynch vs. MIA; Brandon Jacobs, Derrick Ward & Ahmad Bradshaw vs. PHI; Willie Parker & Mewelde Moore vs. DAL; Warrick Dunn & Cadillac Williams @ CAR

 

And here are the week 14 Fantasy RB start rankings; it’s my top 50 RBs in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s game, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Thomas Jones (11)

2. Adrian Peterson (12)

3. Matt Forte (18)

4. Michael Turner (20)

5. Steve Slaton (27)

6. Reggie Bush (33)

7. Brian Westbrook (37)

8. LaDanian Tomlinson (38)

9. Brandon Jacobs (39) *keep an eye on his injury status

10. Steven Jackson (39)

11. Chris Johnson (40)

12. DeAngelo Williams (42)

13. Larry Johnson (44)

14. Peyton Hillis (45)

15. Marion Barber (47) *keep an eye on his injury status

16. Clinton Portis (48) *drop him 5 or 6 spots if he’s worse than probable

17. Maurice Jones-Drew (53)

18. Ronnie Brown (54)

19. Frank Gore (56)

20. Marshawn Lynch (56)

21. LenDale White (56)

22. Joseph Addai (57)

23. Tim Hightower (61)

24. Willie Parker (62) *keep an eye on his injury status

25. Jamal Lewis (67)

26. Kevin Faulk (70)

27. Ryan Grant (72)

28. Sammy Morris (74)

29. Darren McFadden (76) *switch him with Fargas if he’s worse then probable

30. Derrick Ward (77)

31. Leon Washington (77)

32. Mewelde Moore (80) *bump him to Parker’s spot if Parker can’t go

33. Kevin Smith (81)

34. Jerome Harrison (82)

35. Warrick Dunn (83)

36. Pierre Thomas (83)

37. Dominic Rhodes (83)

38. Willis McGahee (86) *if he’s playing

39. Chester Taylor (86)

40. LeRon McClain (88) *bump him 5 spots if McGahee doesn’t go

41. Ricky Williams (98)

42. Jerious Norwood (102)

43. Mike Tolbert (102)

44. Deuce McAllister (103)

45. BenJarvis Green-Ellis (104)

46. Jonathan Stewart (108)

47. Justin Fargas (108)

48. Tatum Bell (109)

49. Mike Karney (111)

50. Julius Jones (113)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so check back tomorrow for the rest. And use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 14 QB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 WR Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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NFL Power Rankings – Week 14

Posted on 02 December 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

The top eleven teams in last week’s power rankings all remained in the top 11 this week, as all still seem to be pretty clearly in control of their own playoff destinies. The 12th spot, for now, goes to the Vikings who are on an impressive run, and now find themselves in the driver’s seat for the NFC North.

 

There may be a few noteworthy suspensions handed down in the next week or so, which could have a dramatic impact on the playoff races as the final quarter of the season unfolds. Also, because of the relative assuredness of the playoff picture at this early stage in the season, how teams are able to manage staying focused and staying healthy in the teams’ final meaningless games should have a lot of impact of the playoff picture, even after the pairings are locked in early.

 

Admittedly, Atlanta should probably be at 12 in this week’s rankings instead of 10, with both Denver and Minnesota holding on to stronger playoff hopes at this time. For Atlanta, it seems that the division is out of the question, and it’s wildcard or bust, with the Cowboys still very much on their heels. I just didn’t have the heart to drop Atlanta 2 spots after an impressive road win on the left coast. They’ve definitely been the toughest team to grade out over the course of the season so far. They deserve their respect, there’s no questioning that, but their playoff hopes are still very fragile at this point.

 

NFL Power Rankings Archive3- 4567 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12 - 13

 

Week 14 NFL Power Rankings (last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. New York Giants (1) – 11-1 – The Giants have easily been the most impressive team in the league so far, and appear to be without weakness. Even with the uncertain future of Plaxico Burress in New York, experts seem reluctant to concede that this will even be an issue for the Giants. Their schedule is full of tough teams from here out, but the Giants already enjoy a 2 game lead for the #1 seed in the NFC, a 3 game lead in their division, and a four game lead over Minnesota and Arizona for a first round bye. Next Week: vs. PHI

 

2. Tennessee Titans (2) – 11-1 – A Thanksgiving Day chance to feast on the Lions was probably the perfect remedy for Tennessee team that had lost it’s first game of the season the week before, and who had struggled to run for the last 3 weeks. The Browns and Texans in the next 2 games will probably either wrap up home field for the Titans, or make their week 16 match up with Pittsburgh for potential home field advantage. Also depending on what the rest of the AFC does in the meantime, Tennessee could have a chance to ruin Indy’s playoff hopes before they get started in week 17. Next Week: vs. CLE

 

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (3) – 9-3 – At 9-3, the Steelers have been a tough draw for everyone that they’ve played. You may not be able to say that about any other team in the league this season. The Steelers have positioned themselves for a chance at a bye in the playoffs, and with a game remaining against the Titans, they’re still in striking distance for the #1 seed, if the Titans should stumble, or let up down the stretch. Next Week: vs. DAL

 

4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5) – 9-3 – They’ve had a revolving door at quarterback and running back, and they’re playing a first place schedule, in the toughest division in the NFC, possibly the toughest in the NFL. The Bucs though, still find themselves in the driver’s seat for not only the NFC South title, but also a first round bye. They may not enjoy the cushion in the standings that they probably should at 9-3, and still have 2 tough divisional games on the road. But for now at least, the road to the NFC South title goes through Tampa. Next Week: @ CAR

 

5. Carolina Panthers (7) – 9-3 – If the Buccaneers are feeling salty about their relatively unsecured playoff hopes, despite their 9-3 record, than the Panthers have to feel outright frustrated with their standing in the playoff hunt, despite their strong performance thus far. A chance to beat Tampa head to head this week still leaves the Panthers somewhat in control of their own playoff destiny, but they’ll likely have to win out to have a chance at staying home for a playoff game. Next Week: vs. TB

 

6. Arizona Cardinals (6) – 8-4 – I’ve been feeling the need to justify ranking these Cards so highly all season, but even as the losers of 2 straight, the Cardinals are not a team that you want to sleep on. They’re still just an eyelash away from clinching the NFC West and at least one home playoff game. They’re also just one game behind Tampa and Carolina for a first round bye. In the playoffs, the Cards at home could be dangerous, especially if an east coast team has to travel to Arizona. Keep in mind that 3 of the Cards’ 4 losses came on trips to the east coast, the other was at home to the Giants. They’re front 7 is grossly underrated by most, and their running game still has a chance to get in gear. They’re unlikely to go across the country and beat anyone, but traveling to Arizona for a playoff game could be a lot tougher than it sounds. Next Week: vs. ST.L

 

7. New York Jets (4) – 8-4 – Success appeared to get to the Jets’ heads a bit last week, and they looked about as bad as they possibly could, just a week after dismantling the undefeated Titans. Brett Favre has been a rousing success for the Jets this season; clearly their playoff hopes would have been slim without him. But once the playoffs get here, I think that the Jets will have trouble finding their identity, a game manager would probably fit their formula a little better than a game breaker. Still, when the playoffs come around, there are few who can bring more experience to the table than Favre. The AFC East is still a dogfight, and with 2 west coast trips remaining, the Jets still have their work cut out for them in just getting to the playoffs. Next Week: @ SF

 

8. Indianapolis Colts (8) – 8-4 – If you took a poll among the AFC contenders and asked which team they’d most like to eliminate before the playoffs begin, my guess is that the Colts would be the team that’d be out. With that said, it appears that the rest of the AFC has missed their chance to bury these Colts when they were on the ropes early on. It’s still tough to imagine the Colts making a long run in this year’s playoffs, primarily because of their inability to stop the run. They can however, stop the run with their offense, in a manner of speaking, by jumping on opponents early in games and forcing them to play catch-up. The schedule looks like it could be pretty easy for the Colts from here, but don’t overlook their week 17 match up against Tennessee just yet. If Tennessee slips up and Pittsburgh keeps rolling, the Titans may need that one for the top seed. And if the Colts slip, just a bit in the meantime, the Titans may have a chance to send them home before the playoffs begin. I’m not so sure the Titans take that one off like everyone seems to think. Next Week: vs. CIN

 

9. Baltimore Ravens (9) – 8-4 – They’ve certainly been a great story so far, and the Ravens are starting to look more and more dangerous with each passing week. Their defense has adjusted to a lack of star power in the secondary, and despite the dominance of the run defense, the Ravens aren’t letting much go through the air either. Losses to Indianapolis and the Giants have shown that this team isn’t built for playing catch up, but with new wrinkles and guys stepping up every week, this team still appears to be growing into their prowess. The playoffs are by no means assured just yet, but they’re in sight. And the AFC North title could still be in the fold too. Next Week: vs. WAS

 

10. Atlanta Falcons (10) – 8-4 – The Falcons have taken the NFL by storm, but when it comes to their own division, not so much. There’s no shortage of storylines surrounding the Falcons this season. From moving forward without their jailed franchise quarterback, to finding a diamond in the rough in Matt Ryan; from being stepped out on by Bobby Petrino, to the meteoric rise of rookie head coach Mike Smith; this team is full of great stories. If they aren’t able to hold serve in their final four games however, the story will be about this miraculous rebound falling short of the post season. Someone with 10 or even 11 wins is likely to be left home in the NFC this season; Falcons fans are hoping that it’s not them. Next Week: @ NO

 

11. Denver Broncos (11) – 7-5 – The Broncos went a long way to locking up a playoff berth in week 13, and are quietly building a little head of steam too. If things keep going the way that they are, the Broncos could be looking at a first round match up with Indianapolis. They’ve had a couple of embarrassing post season blowouts at the hands of the Colts in recent years, but may be better equipped to go up and down the field with them this time around. Unless they can figure out how to play consistent defense, the Broncos will likely be short for the playoffs, but as long as their offense remains explosive, they should make it exciting while they’re in there. Next Week: vs. KC

 

12. Minnesota Vikings (16) – 7-5 – In yet another division where no one seems to be able to step up and grab hold of a playoff spot, the Vikings may be peaking at just the right time. Their two-headed backfield and stout defense could prove to be a formula for success once the post season rolls around too. The Vikings still have a very deep interest in pending suspensions of a number of key players, but are in good position for the playoffs despite a number of early season mishaps. Next Week: @ DET

 

13. New England Patriots (14) – 7-5 – The Patriots playoff hopes took a major shot on Sunday with their loss to the Steelers. They’re still very much in the hunt, and because of their experience and coaching have to be considered dangerous, but the Patriots have their work cut out for them too. Next up for the Pats are 2 straight games on the west coast, which has confounded a number of teams. The Jets did them a favor though by not taking advantage of a chance to bury them a little further in the AFC East last week too. Next Week: @ SEA

 

14. Dallas Cowboys (15) – 8-4 – The Cowboys look like they’re back in stride, the question now is, whether they’ll have enough time to make themselves a factor in the race for the playoffs. Their midseason stumble allowed a number of teams to pick up positions on them, but they’re not out of it quite yet. Games against playoff contenders in 3 of their remaining 4 will make the road bumpy, and the fact that two of them are from the AFC means that winning them doesn’t necessarily guarantee the reward of moving up in the standings. Next Week: @ PIT

 

15. Miami Dolphins (17) – 7-5 – I’m still not sure that people have started taking the Dolphins seriously just yet, and with the difficulty that they had in dealing with St. Louis on Sunday, I can understand why. One thing’s for sure though, opponents who’ve gone against Miami and given less than their best have paid the price this season. The Dolphins are more than flash and gimmick, they’re a pretty good football team, and they’re getting better too. They’ll need some help to get into the playoff hunt, but they still look like a factor at this point. Next Week: @ BUF *in Toronto

 

16. Washington Redskins (12) – 7-5 – It looks like the Redskins may have taken a couple of teams by surprise, especially with their improved offense early in the season. In recent weeks however, teams look less apt to let down for Washington, and they also appear to have adjusted to the Redskins new look on offense. Losing 3 of their last 4 has given a serious blow to the Redskins playoff hopes, and the schedule won’t make it any easier finishing up. They’re still in the hunt it seems, but fading fast. Next Week: @ BAL

 

17. Chicago Bears (13) – 6-6 – On one hand, you could say that the Bears let a golden opportunity pass them by against the Vikings in week 13. On the other hand however, you could say that the Bears never really looked like they belonged in the game in the first place. After playing everyone tough through the first 9 weeks of the season, the Bears have been blown out twice by divisional foes in recent weeks. Matt Forte has probably been too much of the offense this season, and looks to be hitting the rookie wall. Next Week: vs. JAX

 

18. New Orleans Saints (20) – 6-6 – Given the number of injuries that the Saints have been forced to deal with, and the tough games that they allowed to get away in weeks 2 and 3, they could consider themselves lucky to be at .500 with 4 games to go. When you look at the rest of the division staring squarely down at them in the rankings however, these Saints look like they’ll be playing for Dan Marino’s passing record, and something positive to carry into next season. The playoffs are pretty much out of the question for this bunch, but they could still affect the race. Next Week: vs. ATL

 

19. San Diego Chargers (19) – 4-8 – The Chargers playoff hopes are alive by the slimmest of margins, and fading quickly. It seems that week after week we look at the Chargers as a team with the potential of getting on a roll. The luxury of playing in the AFC West has kept them in the hunt for much longer than they probably deserve, and technically they could still get in. But the Broncos appear to be on somewhat of a roll lately, and the Chargers still haven’t been able to get things going. Next Week: vs. OAK

 

20. Buffalo Bills (18) – 6-6 – This season for the Bills will be one for the history books for sure. In addition to breaking new ground with a regular season game in Toronto, the Bills have gone from cruising to control of the AFC East early on, to a tail spinning mess of a team that has fallen into last place in the division that they controlled just a few weeks ago. It’ll take a miracle to rescue the Bills season, and  their playoff hopes with just 4 games remaining. Based on the way that they’ve played lately, simply holding up their own end of the bargain and winning out would be a minor miracle. Next Week: vs. MIA *in Toronto

 

21. Philadelphia Eagles (22) – 6-5-1 – Donavan McNabb responded to his benching in a big way with a Thanksgiving Day rally last week. Or maybe he just responded to a chance to play against a pretty bad Cardinals pass defense, traveling across the country in a short week. The Eagles are doing what they can to salvage a respectable record this season, but aside from a one-week infusion of confidence from beating the Steelers, the Eagles have never really presented themselves as a team that could be a factor in the playoff race. Next Week: @ NYG

 

22. Green Bay Packers (21) – 5-7 – Much like the Dow-Jones, the Packers have been either alarmingly good, or alarmingly bad from game to game, without any real warning. You truly never know which Packers team is going to show up from game to game, or as they proved last week, from quarter to quarter or even drive to drive. If the Jets make a sustained run into the playoffs, while the Packers are sitting home this post season, Ted Thompson may need to hire private security. (That is if he hasn’t already.) Next Week: vs. HOU

 

23. Houston Texans (23) – 5-7 – Media and PR types will try to come up with lots of reasons to make you believe that a lot of teams have the potential to be good really soon. When it comes to the Texans, they might be right. They’ve dealt with a considerable amount of adversity this season off of the field, and have had to struggle with injuries and a difficult schedule on the field too. Still, this week showcased a number of teams who look like they’ve already mailed in their seasons, and the Texans aren’t one of them. In fact they exposed one on Monday night against the Jags. Next Week: @ GB

 

24. San Francisco 49ers (27) – 4-8 – Mike Singletary has certainly made his impression on the Niners’ locker room, they’ve won 2 of their last 4, and showed well in a Monday night loss to Arizona. Clearly this team needs a pretty drastic overhaul in order to be competitive, but they’ve got some of the pieces in place already, Singletary looks like he may be one of them. Let’s not forget that they’re in the NFC West too, they could be closer than it seems to making a run at that division. Next Week: vs. NYJ

 

25. Cleveland Browns (26) – 4-8 – The Browns’ season may have been over before it began. Braylon Edwards was never able to establish a rhythm in the offense, Kellen Winslow Jr. has struggled to stay in the lineup, and Donte Stallworth was probably never really a good fit for this team, especially without Joe Jureviscius. The monumental letdown that the Browns have been overall, will probably steal some attention from the fact that their defense is vastly improved over last season. Their season is over now, but don’t sleep on these Browns for next year, they look like they have something that they can build on. Next Week: @ TEN

 

26. Jacksonville Jaguars (24) – 4-8 – The Jags are easily the most disappointing story of the season so far. There have been other teams that have failed to live up to high expectations, but few seem to have been as relatively healthy as Jacksonville. It looks like a slow start to the season derailed the Jags playoff hopes, and their hearts as well. They’re much too talented to be playing the way that they are, this team and its coaches should be outright embarrassed, on Monday night, they were. Next Week: @ CHI

 

27. Kansas City Chiefs (30) – 2-10 – Despite their 2-10 record, it’s not like these Chiefs are wasting a ton of young talent. To their credit, they have proven to be a handful for most opponents, but are simply overmatched on most Sundays. Unfortunately for the Chiefs, they don’t appear to have a lot of pieces in place to build around at this point either. At least they continue to play determined football. That at least, is a testament to Herm Edwards and the veterans on this team. Next Week: @ DEN

 

28. Oakland Raiders (25) – 3-9 – Fresh off of a stunning victory against Denver in week 12, the Raiders appeared to be set up for a mini win streak with the Chiefs on tap last week. Things didn’t work out that way however, and despite the flashes of talent that the Raiders youngsters have shown, they can’t seem to keep it together consistently at this point. Given the coaching carousel in Oakland in recent years, it’s no wonder consistency is an issue. Next Week: @ SD

 

29. Seattle Seahawks (28) – 2-10 – It seems that Mike Holmgren’s decision to take a year away from football may have inspired the Seahawks in an unexpected way. The team it seems has decided to take this season off, and Jim Mora may be wondering just what it is that he signed on for. Next week: vs. NE

 

30. St. Louis Rams (31) – 2-10 – Without their once vaunted offensive attack, the Rams leave a lot to be desired all the way around. They have some offensive talent, but can’t seem to keep them healthy, or to find a rhythm when they are healthy. It appears that the head coach wasn’t all that was wrong with the Rams this season, but it is the NFC West; so next year is still bright. Next Week: @ AZ

 

31. Cincinnati Bengals (29) – 1-9-1 – They found a pulse momentarily this season, but the Bengals look like another team that simply cashed it in when the odds stacked up against them early on. The Bengals, at this point appear to be in need of a major overhaul, both on and off of the field. Whether they’ll finally figure that out or not is another question altogether though. Unfortunately for the fans in Cincinnati, much like those in Oakland, you can’t fire the owner. Next Week: @ IND

 

32. Detroit Lions (32) – 0-12 – Even if they wind up winless, the Lions may be better off for the future than a lot of teams in the bottom third of this list. They have Calvin Johnson and Kevin Smith to build around on offense. Their defense is actually much better than it’s been in recent years, which still leaves lots of room to grow, but is progress none the less. They’re poised to walk away with the number one pick in the draft, and could trade that back for more picks if they’d like. The boatload of picks that they got from the Cowboys, plus whatever they do with their own picks could make the rebuilding effort a lot quicker than you’d expect. And these are no longer Matt Millen’s Lions. Next Week: vs. MIN

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 13 TEs

Posted on 27 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

Here are the week 13 fantasy tight end power rankings and weekly start rankings too. There are 3 games on the slate for today, so don’t forget to get your lineup changes in before you get locked out of the early games.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 13. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 13 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 13 lineup decisions.

 

Week 13 Fantasy Tight End Power Rankings

 

TE Power Rankings Archive34567 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Tony Gonzalez (1) – KC – 696 yds 6 TD

 

2. Antonio Gates (2) – SD – 507 yds 6 TD

 

3. Kevin Boss (8) – NYG – 265 yds 5 TD

 

4. Tony Scheffler (3) – DEN – 363 yds 2 TD

 

5. Dallas Clark (6) – IND – 489 yds 3 TD

 

6. Jason Witten (5) – DAL – 594 yds 2 TD

 

7. Owen Daniels (7) – HOU – 583 yds 2 TD

 

8. Anthony Fasano (9) – MIA – 305 yds 3 TD

 

9. Kellen Winslow Jr. (4) – CLE – 413 yds 3 TD

 

10. Chris Cooley (10) – WAS – 630 yds 1 TD

 

11. Billy Miller (13) – NO – 424 yds 1 TD

 

12. Dustin Keller (12) – NYJ – 383 yds 3 TD

 

13. Bo Scaife (11) – TEN – 490 yds 2 TD

 

14. Jerramy Stevens (16) – TB – 267 yds 2 TD

 

15. Visanthe Schiancoe (15) – MIN – 353 yds 4 TD

 

16. Heath Miller (NR) – PIT – 284 yds 2 TD

 

17. John Carlson (17) – SEA – 351 yds 3 TD

 

18. Zach Miller (14) – OAK – 471 yds 1 TD

 

19. Martellus Bennett (20) – DAL – 207 yds 3 TD

 

20. Greg Olsen (18) – CHI – 391 yds 2 TD

 

Dropped From Rankings: Daniel Graham – DEN

 

TEs Who Should Be Better Than Usual In Week 13: Tony Scheffler @ NYJ; Dustin Keller vs. DEN; Bo Scaife @ DET; Antonio Gates vs. ATL; Greg Olsen @ MIN; Mercedes Lewis @ HOU; Visanthe Schiancoe vs. CHI

 

TEs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 13 Match Ups: Justin Peele @ SD; Daniel Graham @ NYJ; Leonard Pope @ PHI; Dante Rosario @ GB

 

TEs With Tough Week 13 Match Ups: Chris Cooley vs. NYG; Billy Miller & Jeremy Shockey @ TB; John Carlson @ DAL; Kevin Boss @ WAS; Vernon Davis @ BUF; Kellen Winslow Jr. vs. IND

 

TEs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 13: Daniel Fells vs. MIA; Martellus Bennett vs. SEA; Reggie Kelly vs. BAL

 

And here are the week 13 Fantasy TE start rankings; it’s the top 35 tight ends in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better.

 

1. Antonio Gates (10)

2. Tony Scheffler (10)

3. Tony Gonzalez (21)

4. Owen Daniels (26)

5. Dallas Clark (28)

6. Bo Scaife (29)

7. Dustin Keller (30)

8. Anthony Fasano (30)

9. Kevin Boss (33)

10. Jason Witten (36)

11. Visanthe Schaincoe (40)

12. Kellen Winslow Jr. (43)

13. Heath Miller (43)

14. Daniel Graham (46)

15. Jerramy Stevens (48)

16. Greg Olsen (48)

17. Chris Cooley (51)

18. Billy Miller (51)

19. Mercedes Lewis (51)

20. Jerrame Tuman (55)

21. Zach Miller (57)

22. John Carlson (62)

23. Martellus Bennett (62)

24. LJ Smith (63)

25. Alex Smith (66)

26. David Martin (70)

27. Brent Celek (73)

28. Justin Peele (73)

29. Dante Rosario (76)

30. Vernon Davis (76)

31. Todd Heap (79)

32. Donald Lee (82)

33. Alge Crumpler (85)

34. Desmond Clark (86)

35. Benjamin Watson (90)

 

You can use the links at the bottom of the page to check out the rest of this week’s positional rankings. Have a great holiday, and good luck this week.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

Week 13 QB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 RB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 WR Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 13 WRs

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

The wide receiver rankings, like most of the rest of the positional rankings didn’t see a lot of change in week 13, aside from the return of a couple of old familiar names to the list. There have been a number of nice surprises at wide receiver this year, as there typically are, but as of now Lance Moore has officially unseated Eddie Royal as the out of nowhere superstar. We’ll see if he’s able to maintain that status as both Jeremy Shockey and Marques Colston look to be returning to form for the Saints.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 13. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 13 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 13 lineup decisions.

 

Week 13 Fantasy Wide Receiver Power Rankings

 

WR Power Rankings Archive34567 - 8 - 9 - 10- 11 - 12

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Anquan Boldin (1) – AZ – 879 yds 11 TD

 

2. Calvin Johnson (4) – DET – 905 yds 8 TD

 

3. Larry Fitzgerald (2) – AZ – 1010 yds 6 TD

 

4. Steve Smith (7) – CAR – 853 yds 4 TD

 

5. Greg Jennings (6) – GB – 966 yds 6 TD

 

6. Roddy White (6) – ATL – 973 yds 6 TD

 

7. Santana Moss (5) – WAS – 773 yds 5 TD

 

8. Andre Johnson (9) – HOU – 1071 yds 3 TD

 

9. Brandon Marshall (11) – DEN – 887 yds 4 TD

 

10. Reggie Wayne (10) – IND – 824 yds 5 TD

 

11. Randy Moss (NR) – NE – 770 yds 8 TD

 

12. Terrell Owens (NR) – DAL – 718 yds 7 TD

 

13. Bernard Berrian (8) – MIN – 673 yds 4 TD

 

14. Lance Moore (19) – NO – 724 yds 7 TD

 

15. Kevin Walter (17) – HOU – 667 yds 7 TD

 

16. Vincent Jackson (18) – SD – 703 yds 5 TD

 

17. DeWayne Bowe (16) – KC – 724 yds 6 TD

 

18. Hines Ward (14) – PIT – 718 yds 5 TD

 

19. Justin Gage (13) – TEN – 413 yds 4 TD

 

20. Eddie Royal (12) – DEN – 673 yds 4 TD

 

Dropped From Rankings: TJ Houshmandzadeh – CIN; Lee Evans – BUF

 

WRs Who Should Be Better Than In Week 13: Donnie Avery & Tory Holt vs. MIA; Lee Evans vs. SF; Terrell Owens & Roy Williams vs. SEA; Antonio Bryant & Ike Hilliard vs. NO; Reggie Wayne, Marvin Harrison & Anthony Gonzalez @ CLE; Bernard Berrian vs. CHI; Hines Ward & Santonio Holmes @ NE; Santana Moss & Antoine Randle-El vs. NYG; Justin Gage @ DET

 

WRs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 13 Match Ups: Derrick Stanley vs. MIA; Roscoe Parrish & Josh Reed vs. SF; Patrick Crayton vs. SEA; Kevin Curtis, DeSean Jackson & Hank Baskett vs. AZ; Sidney Rice & Bobby Wade vs. CHI; Nate Washington @ NE; Brandon Jones & Justin McCairens @ DET

 

WRs With Tough Week 13 Match Ups: Braylon Edwards vs. IND; Calvin Johnson vs. TEN; Randy Moss & Wes Welker vs. PIT; Steve Smith & Mushin Muhammad @ GB; Greg Jennings & Donald Driver vs. CAR; TJ Houshmandzadeh & Chad Johnson vs. BAL; Plaxico Burress & Amani Toomer @ WAS; Anquan Boldin, Larry Fitzgerald & Steve Breaston @ PHI; Lance Moore, DeVery Handerson & Marques Colston @ TB; DeWayne Bowe & Mark Bradley @ OAK

 

WRs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 13: Donte Stallworth vs. IND; Mike Furrey & Shaun MacDonald vs. TEN

 

And here are the week 13 Fantasy WR start rankings; it’s the top 75 wide receivers in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s games, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Roddy White (23)

2. Santana Moss (23)

3. Reggie Wayne (25)

4. Anquan Boldin (27)

5. Terrell Owens (27)

6. Larry Fitzgerald (31)

7. Andre Johnson (31)

8. Bernard Berrian (33)

9. Calvin Johnson (35)

10. Steve Smith (37)

11. Greg Jennings (38)

12. Brandon Marshall (39)

13. Hines Ward (44)

14. Lee Evans (44)

15. Vincent Jackson (45)

16. Kevin Walter (46)

17. Justin Gage (48)

18. Randy Moss (52)

19. Lance Moore (52)

20. DeSean Jackson (52)

21. DeWayne Bowe (57)

22. Eddie Royal (61)

23. Antonio Bryant (64)

24. Laverneus Coles (67)

25. Issac Bruce (68)

26. TJ Houshmandzadeh (71)

27. Chris Chambers (71)

28. Donnie Avery (73)

29. Jerricho Cotchery (75)

30. Derrick Mason (76)

31. Wes Welker (82)

32. Braylon Edwards (86)

33. Marques Colston (90)

34. Mushin Muhammad (91)

35. Anthony Gonzalez (91)

36. Plaxico Burress *keep an eye on his injury status

37. Santonio Holmes (96)

38. Mark Bradley (97) *keep an eye on his injury status

39. Ted Ginn Jr. (97)

40. Malcolm Floyd (97)

41. Donald Driver (98)

42. Steve Breaston (101)

43. DeVery Henderson (102)

44. Matt Jones (102)

45. Marvin Harrison (109)

46. Michael Jenkins (113)

47. Nate Washington (114)

48. Greg Camarillo (115)

49. Tory Holt (123)

50. Kevin Curtis (124)

51. Antoine Randle-El (125)

52. Patrick Crayton (127)

53. Brandon Lloyd (132)

54. Chad Johnson (132)

55. Hank Baskett (132)

56. Bryant Johnson (135)

57. Jabar Gafney (140)

58. Mark Clayton (142)

59. Reggie Brown (142)

60. Harry Douglas (143)

61. Amani Toomer (146) *bump 5 or 6 spots if Burress is inactive

62. Ike Hilliard (146)

63. Roy Williams (147)

64. Rasheid Davis (148)

65. Koren Robinson (148)

66. Josh Reed (152)

67. Ashley Lelie (157)

68. Sinorice Moss (158) *bump 3 or 4 spots of Burress is inactive

69. Devin Hester (158)

70. Bobby Wade (159)

71. Sidney Rice (161)

72. Marty Booker (166)

73. Brandon Jones (168)

74. Brandon Stokley (169)

75. Chansi Stuckey (171)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so check back tomorrow for the rest. And use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 13 QB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 RB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 13 RBs

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

The fantasy running back rankings only lost one player from the top 20 this week, and since it was Steven Jackson who has been teasing us with hopes that he’d play for the last several weeks, it was probably overdue. There was still a significant amount of movement within the top 20 though, as there seems to be every week with the RBs. We’ll try to do the best we can to keep you up to speed with who’s hot and who’s not as the season progresses.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 13. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 13 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 13 lineup decisions.

 

Week 13 Fantasy Running Back Power Rankings

 

RB Power Rankings Archive34567 - 891011 - 12

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Michael Turner (7) – ATL – 1088 yds 13 TD

 

2. Clinton Portis (1) – WAS – 1206 yds 7 TD

 

3. Matt Forte (9) – CHI – 909 yds 6 TD & 336 yds 3 TD rec

 

4. Thomas Jones (5) – NYJ – 950 yds 9 TD & 140 yds 2 TD rec

 

5. Brandon Jacobs (6) – NYG – 879 yds 11 TD

 

6. Adrian Peterson (4) – MIN – 1180 yds 8 TD

 

7. Marion Barber (8) – DAL – 838 yds 6 TD & 353 yds 2 TD rec

 

8. Frank Gore (3) – SF – 860 yds 6 TD & 331 yds 1 TD rec

 

9. Maurice Jones-Drew (11) – JAX – 503 yds 11 TD & 393 yds 0 TD rec

 

10. DeAngelo Williams (14) – CAR – 883 yds 7 TD & 98 yds 2 TD rec

 

11. Brian Westbrook (2) – PHI – 547 yds 2 TD & 213 yds 2 TD rec

 

12. LaDanian Tomlinson (15) – SD – 770 yds 5 TD & 329 yds 1 TD rec

 

13. Marshawn Lynch (19) – BUF – 710 yds 7 TD & 282 yds 1 TD rec

 

14. Chris Johnson (13) – TEN – 833 yds 5 TD & 218 yds 1 TD rec

 

15. Ronnie Brown (12) –MIA – 642 yds 9 TD & 19 yds 1 TD passing

 

16. Steve Slaton (16) – HOU – 774 yds 6 TD & 198 yds 1 TD rec

 

17. Willie Parker (17) – PIT – 485 yds 4 TD

 

18. Larry Johnson (NR) – KC – 565 yds 3 TD

 

19. Joseph Addai (20) – IND – 457 yds 5 TD & 131 yds 1 TD rec

 

20. LenDale White (18) – TEN – 469 yds 11 TD

 

Dropped From Rankings: Steven Jackson – ST.L

 

RBs Who Should Be Better Than Usual In Week 13: Ronnie Brown & Ricky Williams @ ST.L; Thomas Jones vs. DEN; LenDale White & Chris Johnson @ DET; Larry Johnson @ OAK; DeAngelo Williams & Jonathan Stewart @ GB; Maurice Jones-Drew @ HOU; Marshawn Lynch vs. SF

 

RBs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 13 Match Ups: Darren McFadden & Justin Fargas vs. KC; Patrick Cobbs @ ST.L; Leon Washington vs. DEN; Jamal Lewis & Jerome Harrison vs. IND; LeRon McClain & Ray Rice @ CIN

 

RBs With Tough Week 13 Match Ups: Clinton Portis & Ladell Betts vs. NYG; Peyton Hillis @ NYJ; Matt Forte @ MIN; Adrian Peterson & Chester Taylor vs. CHI; Brandon Jacobs, Derrick Ward & Ahmad Bradshaw @ WAS; Brian Westbrook vs. AZ

 

RBs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 13: Sammy Morris, Kevin Faulk & BenJarvis Green-Ellis vs. PIT; Cedric Benson vs. BAL; Deuce McAllister & Pierre Thomas @ TB; Steven Jackson, Antonio Pittman & Kenneth Darby vs. MIA

 

And here are the week 13 Fantasy RB start rankings; it’s the top 50 running backs in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s games, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Thomas Jones (11)

2. Michael Turner (20)

3. Marion Barber (27)

4. Maurice Jones-Drew (30)

5. DeAngelo Williams (31)

6. Matt Forte (33)

7. Frank Gore (36)

8. Chris Johnson (36)

9. Ronnie Brown (36)

10. Clinton Portis (38) *keep an eye on his injury status

11. Brandon Jacobs (39) *keep an eye on his injury status

12. Marshawn Lynch (39)

13. Adrian Peterson (40)

14. LaDanian Tomlinson (40)

15. Larry Johnson (46)

16. LenDale White (48)

17. Brian Westbrook (49) *keep an eye on his injury status

18. Darren McFadden (49)

19. Steve Slaton (50)

20. Jamal Lewis (53)

21. Reggie Bush (55) *keep an eye on his injury status

22. Joseph Addai (55)

23. Steven Jackson (60) *keep an eye on his injury status

24. Willie Parker (60)

25. Kevin Smith (61)

26. Leon Washington (67)

27. Mewelde Moore (74)

28. Warrick Dunn (75)

29. Ryan Grant (76)

30. LeRon McClain (76) *drop 5 spots if McGahee starts

31. Ricky Williams (76)

32. Derrick Ward (78) *bump 5 spots if Jacobs doesn’t play

33. Willis McGahee (80) *keep an eye on his injury status

34. Tim Hightower (81)

35. Jonathan Stewart (83)

36. Dominic Rhodes (85)

37. Kevin Faulk (94)

38. Peyton Hillis (94)

39. Jerious Norwood (98)

40. Julius Jones (101)

41. Justin Fargas (101)

42. BenJarvis Green-Ellis (102)

43. Pierre Thomas (108) *bump 2 spots if Bush isn’t playing

44. Deuce McAllister *bump 5 to 7 spots if Bush isn’t playing

45. Chester Taylor (114)

46. Ahman Green (116)

47. Ray Rice (120) *bump 3 or 4 spots if McGahee is inactive

48. Michael Bush (121)

49. Fred Jackson (122)

50. Patrick Cobbs (124)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so keep checking back. You can use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 13 QB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 WR Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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NFL Power Rankings – Week 13

Posted on 25 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

There were no major shakeups in the power rankings this week, especially at the top, unless you consider the Titans slipping out of the top spot to #2 to be a major shakeup that is. With each passing week we seem to gain a little more clarity into the likely playoff picture, and possible seeding scenarios.

 

There’s still a lot of football left to be played, and certainly a surprise or two still around the corner in the season’s closing weeks, but by now I think we have a pretty good idea of which teams are contenders and which ones are pretenders. What’s still very much up for grabs though, is which of those contenders will position themselves to walk away with the hardware at the end. After all, there’s no trophy for being the best team after 11 games, or even 16 for that matter. It’s all about the playoffs, but until they begin, here’s how I see things so far.

 

NFL Power Rankings Archive3- 4567 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12

 

Week 13 NFL Power Rankings

 

1. New York Giants (2) – 10-1 – Most, myself included, probably felt that they were deserving of the top spot a few weeks ago, but the Titans simply kept rolling along. At this point, I think the consensus is that the Giants are probably the team to beat. We’ll see how they are able to maintain their focus and health down the stretch. Next Week: @ WAS

 

2. Tennessee Titans (1) – 10-1 – The Titans have struggled to run the ball in recent weeks, and this time it came back to bite them. Expect Jeff Fischer to use this as an opportunity to rally his troops. Having something left to work on at this point in the season isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Next Week: @ DET (Thanksgiving)

 

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (5) – 8-3 – The Steelers have quietly been doing what we’ve grown accustomed to seeing from them. A strong effective defense, complimented by a conservative yet efficient offense has been the formula that’s kept the Steelers rolling along, and mostly staying under the radar while doing it. Next Week: @ NE

 

4. New York Jets (6) – 8-3 – Although the AFC East is still very much up for grabs, the Jets have gone a long way to cementing their position in control of the race. It appears that Brett Favre was right when he said that he thought he might have a little more football left in him. It looks like the Jets do too. Next Week: vs. DEN

 

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8) – 8-3 – It seems that Jon Gruden has taken his once complex offense and made it plug and play. Despite the rash of injuries to skill position players, the Bucs keep getting it done with a revolving cast of characters on offense, and the defense that the Bucs have been known for. Next Week: vs. NO

 

6. Arizona Cardinals (4) – 7-4 – They held their own with the mighty Giants for just over a half, but clearly still have work to do if they hope to contend with the NFC’s elite. Perhaps the Cards were a bit hasty in phasing Edgerin James out of their game plan altogether. Next Week: @ PHI (Thanksgiving)

 

7. Carolina Panthers (3) – 8-3 – Maybe they were simply due for a letdown. Or maybe, like a lot of us they underestimated the upstart Atlanta Falcons. Whatever the reason for Sunday’s debacle, the NFC South doesn’t allow much margin for error. Even if they can’t get past Tampa though, the Panthers still find themselves in the best position of all of the potential wild cards. Next Week: @ GB

 

8. Indianapolis Colts (9) – 7-4 – Reports of the Colts’ demise appear to have been greatly exaggerated. The Colts are still very much in the thick of the hunt in the AFC, if not the AFC South, and may be proving that they’re even more dangerous with their backs to the wall. Next Week: @ CLE

 

9. Baltimore Ravens (10) – 7-4 – After a few early season stumbles late in games, the Ravens now appear to have the endgame mastered. Keeping teams from getting wide open early may be the key to the Ravens being able to string together a run that leads them to an improbable playoff berth. The Ravens are playing a cold weather style, we’ll see if it plays to their favor now that the weather’s turning. Next Week: @ CIN

 

10. Atlanta Falcons (18) – 7-4 – Consider me sold; these Falcons are for real. They still have their work cut out for them though sitting at 3rd in their division will certainly make the road to a potential playoff berth a bumpy one. Next Week: @ SD

 

11. Denver Broncos (7) – 6-5 – Nothing should surprise you when it comes to this team. Nothing that is, except for the few moments when they actually look like a playoff caliber team. Maybe the Broncos are having trouble focusing because no one in the division looks capable of keeping them from the playoffs anyway. If they limp into the postseason like they’ve played lately though, they could be in for another unforgettable postseason embarrassment. Next Week: @ NYJ

 

12. Washington Redskins (12) – 6-5 – They got a win on Sunday, but I don’t think they did much to dispel concerns surrounding the offense in recent weeks. Wild card spots in the NFC look like they could be awfully tough to come by, and the Giants appear unlikely to let anyone back into the NFC East race. We’ll see if Washington is able to turn up the sense of urgency in the next few weeks. Next Week: vs. NYG

 

13. Chicago Bears (13) – 6-5 – The Bears got back on track last week after back to back losses, and still find themselves in the driver’s seat for the NFC North. If they intend to get into the playoffs and beyond however, they’ll have to find a way to take some of the load off of rookie Matt Forte. Next Week: @ MIN

 

14. New England Patriots (15) – 7-4 – The Patriots look to have found a rhythm, and Matt Cassel has grown from high school quarterback to competent NFL starter in just a few weeks time. Something tells me that the rest of the AFC may be sorry that they didn’t put these Pats away when they had the chance. Next Week: vs. PIT

 

15. Dallas Cowboys (16) – 7-4 – Tony Romo has returned to form, and brought TO back with him to boot. For now it seems that all is well in Cowboy land. We’ll see if they can keep it going now that they all seem to be on the same page once again. Next Week: vs. SEA (Thanksgiving)

 

16. Minnesota Vikings (17) – 6-5 – The Vikings may be hitting their stride, and just in the nick of time. Luckily for them, the rest of the division may have waited for them to get ready to make themselves a factor in this race. The Vikes could be a tough draw in the playoffs, even on the road, with their strong run defense and ridiculous two-headed backfield. Next Week: vs. CHI

 

17. Miami Dolphins (14) – 6-5 – Fool Bellichick once, as the Dolphins did with the advent of the wildcat offense, and credit is due. Try it a second time, and shame on you. Tony Sparano and his Dolphins will have to figure out how to compliment their trickery by simply imposing their will on teams occasionally too. They have the weapons in their arsenal, now they just have to put them to the right use. Next Week: @ ST.L

 

18. Buffalo Bills (25) – 6-5 – Trent Edwards and the Bills certainly made a statement in KC on Sunday. In doing so they have also declared themselves back in the race for the AFC East. We’ll have to wait and see if it’s more than a one-week explosion. Next Week: vs. SF

 

19. San Diego Chargers (19) – 4-7 – I can’t help but feel like these Chargers still have some semblance of a run left in the tank, but with each passing week, it appears less and less likely. As long as the Broncos continue to stumble though, a playoff run will still remain a possibility for this team. Next Week: vs. ATL

 

20. New Orleans Saints (21) – 6-5 – Despite the rash of offensive injuries, this team has still been a major disappointment this season. Especially since, at times, they have played at an elite level. Still inconsistency and the success of the rest of this division will probably be too much for the Saints to overcome this season. Next Week: @ TB

 

21. Green Bay Packers (11) – 5-6 – Forget about the fact that Brett Favre is lighting it up for the Jets in the AFC, the Packers had to see what they had in Aaron Rodgers in this, his 4th season. With that said, they way that Rodgers and these Packers have played at times is the reason why Ted Thompson knew that having Favre around on the bench was not an option. Next Week: vs. CAR

 

22. Philadelphia Eagles (20) – 5-5-1 – The Eagles and Andy Reid appear to be their own worst enemy at this point. With a banged up Brian Westbrook and Correll Buckhalter injured early in the game on Sunday, it’s feasible that Reid benched Donavan McNabb to simply keep him from being killed in the second half against the Ravens. Next Week: vs. AZ (Thanksgiving)

 

23. Houston Texans (24) – 4-7 – They’re clearly playing for the future at this point, but offensively at least, that future looks like it could be pretty bright. If they could put together a consistent defense, they might hope to contend in the talent laden AFC South. Next Week: vs. JAX

 

24. Jacksonville Jaguars (23) – 4-7 – The Jags are easily the most talented team in the bottom third of the rankings, on both sides of the ball it would seem. Something however keeps this team from being able to believe in themselves enough to play a game from start to finish. I suspect there will be big changes in Jacksonville this off-season. Next Week: @ HOU

 

25. Oakland Raiders (31) – 3-8 – The Raiders and Tom Cable are doing the best that they can with what they’ve got, and are scaring some teams in the process. In the big picture, they’re probably overmatched talent wise in most weeks, but they do have a few exciting young players to build around. Next Week: vs. KC

 

26. Cleveland Browns (22) – 4-7 – New quarterback, same old problems. Now they’re back to the old quarterback it seems, but the Browns need a lot more than a new QB to ignite this offense. They might need a defibrillator to get their collective heart going again. Next Week: vs. IND

 

27. San Francisco 49ers (26) – 3-8 – They’ve shuffled coaches, coordinators, quarterbacks and systems, but the Niners still appear no closer to getting to the playoffs any time soon. In fact they may be headed in the opposite direction altogether. Next Week: @ BUF

 

28. Seattle Seahawks (27) – 2-9 – They’ve put up much more of a fight it would seem in recent weeks, but still the Seahawks are nowhere close to where they expected to be at this point in the season. It looks like it’s safe to say that 2008 in Seattle may be the worst sports season any city has ever seen. Next Week: @ DAL (Thanksgiving)

 

29. Cincinnati Bengals (28) – 1-9-1 – It’d be nice to say that the Bengals have played better than their 1-9-1 record would indicate, but it’s probably not true. The Bengals still have enough firepower to be a handful for just about anyone, but a sustained period of success is highly unlikely. Next Week: vs. BAL

 

30. Kansas City Chiefs (28) – 1-10 – They seemed to have found an offensive rhythm of late, but simply can’t stop the run against anyone. The Cheifs should provide us with plenty of good highlights, both their own and their opponents, this season, but probably won’t be much of a factor in most games. Next Week: @ OAK

 

31. St. Louis Rams (30) – 2-9 – The Rams went from freefall, to seemingly righting their ship, and back to freefall in a few short weeks. The good news is that in the NFC West, they can still reasonably hope to come back next year with a chance to be competitive again. Next Week: vs. MIA

 

32. Detroit Lions (32) – 0-11 – Now that the Titans have gotten a blemish on their perfect record, I suppose the attention will shift to Detroit, and their record of perfect ineptitude so far. Some say it’s harder to go winless than undefeated in today’s NFL, for what it’s worth I never understood that logic, but the Lions are doing it and making it look easy too. Next Week: vs. TEN

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

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Ravens Rope-a-Dope Scores Another KO

Posted on 24 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

Float like a butterfly,

Sting like a bee,

The Ravens could rope-dope,

The whole AFC.

 

John Harbaugh is just 11 games into his rookie campaign, and in addition to besting his friend and mentor Andy Reid on Sunday, it seems that his version of the Ravens may have also begun the process of cementing their identity.

 

On the surface, the Ravens are much like the team we have grown accustomed to seeing year in and year out here in Baltimore. They’re once again an absolutely dominant, and for lack of a better word, scary defensive unit. They try to overcome the unbalanced talent on the offensive side of the ball by managing the game, and really attacking teams on the ground. That is after all, and always has been, Ravens football.

 

Look a little deeper though and you’ll notice that this time around, the Ravens have some talent that they can work with at quarterback. The additions of Ray Rice and Lorenzo Neal, and the brilliant repositioning of LeRon McClain have added a new level of depth and dimension to the running attack. And the hybrid skill set of Troy Smith, Flacco’s ability to tuck and run, and Haloti Ngata opening up holes at the goal line have collectively breathed some excitement and respectability into the offense. And the bottom line shows it, at 7-4, the Ravens are tied for 5th in the AFC, and lead the AFC North in scoring. And did I mention that they have a quarterback?

 

The Ravens, under Flacco have already had an unprecedented 4 game stretch in which they piled up 134 points, and after a week 11 slip up against perhaps the best team in football, they came back with another 36 point effort on Sunday against what had previously been the league’s 8th ranked scoring defense. And speaking of defense, the Ravens’ D is quite obviously holding up their end of the scoring load too, but that’s par for the course when it comes to the Ravens.

 

Again on Sunday though, as is quite often the case in football, and sports in general for that matter, the score might not have told the whole story. At 10-7, the halftime score sure didn’t feel indicative of the Ravens effort to that point, largely due to the 100-yard kick return by Quentin Demps just before the half. But as has often been the case in Ravens victories this year, the game still seemed to be very much in the balance (despite the insertion of Kevin Kolb) until a late surge closed the deal.

 

There’s no doubt that the Ravens have had a lot of obstacles to overcome already this season, particularly when it comes to injuries. But perhaps because of those injuries, or perhaps as a result of the new look hybrid offensive packages, or possibly because of the success of the Giants last season using a similar formula, the 2008 Ravens appear committed to using as much of their active game day roster as is effectively possible. And in doing so, they’ve proven to be too much for teams to handle late in games.

 

Consecutive losses in weeks 4 and 5, in which the team was unable to hold on to second half leads, and saw their defense give games away on late drives gave reason to believe that this year’s Ravens might be just the opposite type of team. Their seeming inability to finish games was a major reason for concern under the new regime. Since then though the Ravens have turned their second half fortunes around and turned the endgame into their time to shine.

 

There were glimpses of it early too. In week 3 against Cleveland the Ravens trailed at halftime 10-7. And although they didn’t wait until nail biting time to take control, it was a 3 TD, third quarter explosion that put the game away for the Ravens.  Even in the heartbreaking loss to Pittsburgh in week 4, Flacco and his troops drove 76 improbable yards for the tying touchdown with just over 4 minutes to play.

 

After the tough losses to the Steelers and Titans, the Ravens have been lights out in the second half and particularly the 4th quarter. In their second meeting with Cleveland in week 9, the Ravens were down 27-13 until inside of the final minute and a half of the third quarter, before rallying for 24 straight points to finish the Browns off. The following week against Houston it was a 19-13 Ravens lead at the start of the final quarter, in which the Ravens managed 22 points to make it look like it was never in doubt.

 

I suppose you could view the efforts of the Browns, Texans, and Eagles and say that they simply quit down the stretch, having watched the games, it’d be tough to argue. But at this point, given that it’s been the trend in recent weeks, to dismiss it as teams giving up would do a disservice to the Ravens’ efforts. Over the last few weeks, the Ravens have quite simply outlasted teams, outworked them, and ultimately beaten them into submission.

 

Much like the Giants of last season and again this season, who seem to have been pressed into using more of the roster than they would have liked to, the Ravens are using that to their advantage. By shuffling guys in and out more frequently, and using their ball control offense to keep their defense fresh, they seem to be more willing and able to finish games, and bring their best efforts when the game is on the line. They are after all, all NFL players, and although the talent level is clearly varied, it seems that a fresh B- player against a fatigued A+ player can still create match up problems.

 

The Ravens will still have to figure out what they can do when teams are able to jump on them early like the Colts and Giants were able to do. If the Ravens could bring their 4th quarter game from start to finish, they’d be impossible to deal with. For now it seems that they’ll have to be content to play conservative, control the clock, keep the defense fresh, and stay in position to make a run in the fourth quarter. It would seem that they’ve found their profile. Until they can develop Joe Flacco into their “haymaker”, the Ravens may just have to lie on the ropes, finish every jab and let opponents punch themselves out.

 

Styles make fights, as they say, and the Ravens look to have found theirs. With the apparent lack of knockout power in the AFC this season, the Ravens may try to rope-a-dope their way back to the Superbowl.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

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Eagles – Ravens preview

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Eagles – Ravens preview

Posted on 23 November 2008 by caseywillett

Here are some things to look for in the game today:

Keep Joe standing-  The Eagles, much like the Giants are going to come after Joe Flacco. Currently the Eagles are second in the NFL with 36 sacks on the season. Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Johnson likes to bring exotic blitz packages teams at teams. Out of the 11 starters on defense for the Eagles, 10 of them have at least one sack. For the Ravens offensive line, most of that pressure comes from the front four of the Eagles. With the Ravens without the services of Jared Gaither, and Willie Anderson’s status up in the air, the Ravens could be looking at Adam Terry and Oneil Cousins or Chad Slaughter at the tackle positions. Keep an eye on the Trent Cole (#58) and Darren Howard (#90) for the Eagles defense, they have a combined 14 sacks.

Who do you cover ? - While DeSean Jackson has become the number one target of Donovan McNabb, after him McNabb and the Eagles have several different guys that can catch the ball. This could be a big key in the game today if they do not have Brian Westbrook. The Eagles could be able to stretch the Ravens defense out by going 3 or 4 wide at the receiver position. Plus his back and tight ends are also threats to catch the ball.

Here are the Eagles players stats when it comes to pass catching : Jackson- WR(42c 1TD), Brown -WR (13c 1TD), Lewis -WR (16c), Curtis-WR (19c 1TD),Avant – WR( 18c 1TD) ,Baskett - WR (22c 3TD), Smith – TE (18c 3 TD), Celek – TE (17c), Westbrook -RB (32c 2TD) ,Buckhalter (21c 1 TD)

Who can make the play on 3rd down - This might be the biggest element in deciding who wins the game today. The Eagles and the Ravens defense are two of the best in the NFL on stopping teams on 3rd down. Both teams have only allowed 33.1 % of third downs to be converted, Eagles(41-124) Ravens(49-148). Whichever team can covert on third down today could go a long way in deciding who wins this football game.

Which trend survives- People always talk about trends in the NFL, well here are two of them going into today’s game. Since 2000, the Eagles have the second best record in the NFL following a loss, owning a 30-15-1 record (.663). In 2008, they are 2-1-1, so far. The Ravens are 0-2 coming off of a loss this year and are coming off of a loss on Sunday to the Giants.

 

This will be a close game, probably with out a bunch of points being put on the board, but I will say the Eagles squeak out at 19-16 win over the Ravens today.

 

Also, if you see Kendra Wilkinson in the stands today, be nice to her, and tell her to return my phone calls please.

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Towson holds off Hampton in hoops

Posted on 22 November 2008 by Drew Forrester

When he needed a big basket and a big rebound, Towson coach Pat Kennedy turned to Troy Franklin and Robert Nwankwo respectively on Saturday night at the Towson Center.  And both players delivered in a big way.

Franklin, a freshman guard (Mt. Carmel, Baltimore), scored 11 of his 18 points in the game’s final 5:40, including two 3-pointers on successive trips down the court, and Nwankwo had eight rebounds in the second half as the Tigers held off Hampton University, 82-73, to improve to 2-1 on the season.  Hampton (MEAC) came into the game on the heels of a major win on Thursday night, having knocked off defending CAA champion George Mason, 50-44.

Towson’s Jarrel Smith led all scorers with 24 points, while Brian Morris chipped in 9 points and 9 assists for the Tigers, who play host to New Jersey Institute of Technology on Monday night.

Towson controlled the first 30 minutes of the game, before Hampton rallied midway through the second half to take a 60-57 lead.  But the Tigers went on a 12-2 run from that point, boosted by Franklin’s two 3-point buckets and a three-pointer from Josh Thornton.  Hampton cut it to a four point margin at 72-68 with just under two minutes to go but that was a close as the Pirates would get.

Through three games, Towson looks to be MUCH improved over last year.  Junior college transfer Calvin Lee is a legitimate CAA player and fellow transfer Brian Morris (Richmond) gives the Tigers a player who can both handle and shoot the ball.  Add to those two players the emerging Jarrel Smith and the black and gold have a formidable three-man ensemble – and each player has a talent unique to himself.  

The Tigers have displayed a propensity for turning the ball over a little too much in the early stages of the season, but there’s no question this year’s edition of “Pat’s Cats” is Kennedy’s best team yet.  

Following Monday’s home game with NJIT, the Tigers will face a major test next weekend, playing Villanova on Friday night (in Philadelphia) and either Rhode Island or Penn State on Saturday night.  

On December 3rd at the RAC Arena, UMBC will host Towson in what should be the local game of the year.

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Ravens vs. Eagles – Your Predictions

Posted on 20 November 2008 by Alex Thomas

Finally, the Ravens return to Baltimore and get to play in front of the home crowd. Coming off an embarrassing performance in the Meadowlands, the Ravens defense is poised to play their best game of the season.

Brian Westbrook is battling an ankle injury and has not yet participated in practice this week. Westbrook is the support beam for the Eagles offense. If he doesn’t play, the Eagles offense takes a totally different shape. Donovan McNabb did not play well last week against a rather pathetic Bengals defense.

Unfortunately, on the other side of the football, things aren’t looking so good. It looks like Jared Gaither won’t play, and Willie Anderson has been limited in practice all week. With the Eagles defense leading the NFL in sacks with 36, Joe Flacco could be running for his life on Sunday. When I last saw Derrick Mason he was in a sling, and he told reporters earlier this week that he is uncertain about whether or not he’ll play.

I think that if the Ravens were completely healthy, this would be an easy Baltimore victory. But the banged up offensive line creates some severe personnel match-up problems. Oneal Cousins trying to block Trent Cole and Darren Howard? Yeah…right…

The Ravens need this win with Miami and New England breathing down their neck in the AFC wild card race. Baltimore, Miami, and New England all have 6-4 records, but at this point the Ravens hold the tie-breaker. And either the Dolphins or the Patriots will pick up a win this week as both teams will square off in Miami.

My prediction: The Ravens know what’s at stake and will find a way to win this week, but Joe Flacco must be protected in order for that to happen. Look for more Troy Smith this week.

Ravens – 23

Eagles -16

Pivotal match-up: Ravens Offensive Line vs. Eagles Defensive Line.

Where it could all go wrong: The old adage: protect the football and protect the quarterback. If both of those things happen, the Ravens will win this game. I don’t see the Eagles doing much on offense with an unhealthy Brian Westbrook.

Surprising statistic: The Eagles are 37-1 when McNabb has a passer rating over 100.

Last Week’s winner would have been Ravenator if he would have picked the Giants to win, but the check mark goes to Johnny Rocket, who predicted a 31-11 Ravens loss. My pick: 23-20 Giants. Actual score: 30-10 Giants.

Week 10 Winner: My man Franchise gets the check mark, predicting a 31-10 Ravens victory. Remember when Ozzie Newsome was getting verbally crucified on the airwaves? I guess all of us should trust the Franchise. My pick: 29-12 Ravens. Actual Score: 41-13 Ravens.

Week 9 Winner: Johnny Rocket picked the closest score, predicting a 22-16 Ravens win. I don’t think anyone could have predicted the Ravens to put up 37 points on the road. My pick: 23-17 Browns. Actual score: 37-27 Ravens.

Week 8 winner: Nestminder is our first back-to-back winner, picking the Ravens to win 24-6. We had a record-low in the number of predictions received, but we can rebound this week. We’ll chalk that one up to the new website. My pick: 27-6 Ravens. Actual score: 29-10 Ravens

Week 7 winner: Nestminder picked a 20-13 Ravens victory and Polostat was a close second. My pick: 24-16 Ravens. Actual score: 27-13 Ravens.

Week 6 winner: Johnny Rocket correctly picked against the Ravens, per usual, predicting a 32-8 Colts victory. My pick: 28-23 Colts. Actual score: 31-3 Colts.

Week 5 winner: Columbia Ken picked the closest score, predicting a 17-13 Titans victory. My pick: 17-9 Ravens. Actual score: 13-10 Titans

Week 4 winner: Jon R. reluctantly picked a 24-20 win for the Steelers. My pick: 13-10 Ravens. Actual score: 23-20 Steelers (OT)

Week 3 winner: EazyE picked a 23-13 win for the Ravens vs. Cleveland. My pick: 23-13 Ravens. Actual score: 24-10 Ravens.

What are your predictions this week?

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