As I turned off the TV last night, upset at the result of the game in Denver, I had the realization that the very emotion I was feeling was precisely why I love the game of football.
No other sport can combine passion, overreaction and anticipation quite like the National Football League. And when you add in the fantasy football angle, things can get a little out of hand.
The notes I saw and read on Twitter yesterday were nothing short of hilarious. People were upset that they had started Chris Johnson over Alfred Morris, and they couldn’t comprehend why Cam Newton couldn’t move the Carolina offense. They were mad that they didn’t place second-string CJ Spiller in their starting lineup, and of course, they hated the fact that Mark Sanchez was torching an overrated Bills’ defense.
Folks, this is football. This is what happens. It’s Week 1. We’ll overreact, and we’ll jump to unnecessary conclusions. Some of these conclusions will be right, while others are just simply outlandish.
That’s what I’m here for. Each week, I’m going to tell you what you did wrong given the outcome of a particular matchup. But, of course, your “wrong choice” needs to be analyzed. After all, do you want to be the one jumping to irrational decisions based on one week in the NFL?
If you benched Stevan Ridley, you’re doing it wrong.
I had Stevan Ridley on my “Really Neat” list this week, and man, he sure lived up to my expectations. I think Ridley has great fantasy value this season, but I wouldn’t assume this type of performance each week. The Titans have a weak rush defense, and the Patriots played with a solid cushion for most of the game. While this can and will happen again, Ridley should still be considered an RB2.
If you drafted Roddy White over Julio Jones, you’re doing it wrong.
My love for Julio Jones was known on Twitter, and it looks as though he’s going to be the number one fantasy play in Atlanta this year. His rise in ADP during August looks like it wasn’t as ridiculous as some made it out to be. And while Roddy White surely still has fantasy value, the number one takeaway we should have gotten from the game against Kansas City was that Matt Ryan wants to get Julio Jones the ball in the red zone. That, in combination with a new-look offense, screams fantasy gold for 2012.
If you benched Adrian Peterson because you were worried about his knee, you’re doing it wrong.
I admit it. I was wrong about AP. I had no idea a human being could do what he did. The fact that he scored twice wasn’t as surprising as the fact that he ran the ball 17 times for 84 yards.
You want to blame it on matchup? Bad idea. Jacksonville ranked 8th against the run last year. Adrian Peterson is back, he’s healthy, and he’s going to be a top play every week unless something drastic happens. For those of you who drafted him in the second or third round, you’re getting a first-round choice. Your risk paid off.
If you started DeAngelo Williams because everyone (including me) told you he would blow up against Tampa Bay, you’re doing it wrong.
One of the most intriguing fantasy plays of the week turned into one of the most disappointing when DeAngelo Williams ran the ball 6 times for -1 yard. What does this tell me? Well, I think Tampa Bay’s improved. But I also think this is an example of why I never own a Carolina Panther running back. I wouldn’t rely on DeAngelo or Jonathan Stewart as anything more than a flex play moving forward.
If you drafted a quarterback early, you’re doing it wrong.
You really think I’d leave this one off the list? If you look at the highest scoring quarterbacks from Sunday (and Wednesday), you’ll see Aaron Rodgers as the 4th best fantasy quarterback, Brees as the 6th, Brady as the 11th, Stafford as the 17th, and Newton as the 19th.
No, I’m not going to say I was right because it’s Week 1. I still expect each of those quarterbacks to have stellar seasons. With that said, I think this first week showed that there are plenty of other quarterback options in fantasy football this year.
If you benched Alfred Morris, you’re doing it wrong.
Alfred Morris: The perfect sell high situation. While I do think he’s the most valuable of the Skins’ backs to own, I also believe he played in a very favorable situation. Not only were the Redskins leading for the majority of the game, but the Saints defense is nothing spectacular.
I see Morris as a low-end RB2 right now. If you can trade him for a legitimate starter who failed to meet expections Week 1 – do it.
If you started Chris Johnson, you’re doing it wrong.
Was the result of Chris Johnson’s performance due to lack of offensive line support or an improved New England front seven? I’d go with a little bit of both.
Johnson had trouble finding holes, but the Patriots did a nice job against him. Don’t sell him just yet because, after all, you spent a hefty price to get him. But definitely keep an eye out. Nobody wants a repeat of 2011.
If you started the Bills Defense, you’re doing it wrong.
I was one of them. I started the Bills defense in what looked to be a favorable matchup against the Jets.
I’m still not really upset at the logic used. The Jets played with a short field throughout the game because Ryan Fitzpatrick couldn’t keep the ball, and they scored on defense and special teams.
With that said, drop the Bills defense this week. You don’t want that to happen again.
If you took a tight end before the end of your draft, you’re doing it wrong.
The highest scoring tight end, Jimmy Graham, posted a measly 14.5 points with standard scoring. So you may be wondering, “Why did I spend a second round choice on these tight ends?”
Well, I’m not sure. I talked about it on here, but wasting a pick on Graham or Gronkowski in the second wasn’t a sound choice. I think, however, that Graham will be closer to his value at the end of the year than Gronkowski will.
Surely the elite tight ends will provide the most consistency from week to week. And I really, really like Aaron Hernandez this year. But I think that if you spent anything higher than a fifth round choice on a tight end, you’re going to be a little disappointed this year.
If you started a non-RGIII rookie quarterback, you’re doing it wrong.
Robert Griffin III didn’t disappoint, but man, rookie quarterbacks really liked throwing interceptions yesterday. Andrew Luck threw three, Brandon Weeden threw what looked like seventeen, and Russell Wilson had just 153 yards through the air.
I typically never rely on rookie quarterbacks for fantasy production. I took a flier on Russell Wilson this season, and am still interested in seeing how he performs outside of the division. But it does look like RGIII may be the only consistent starter from week to week. Keep an eye on Luck, obviously, too.
If you didn’t enjoy the first Sunday of the NFL season, you’re doing it wrong.
How could you not enjoy watching Blaine Gabbert’s last second heroics be diminished by a long field goal? And what about that deep ball to Pierre Garcon? Or watching Alex Smith outperform MVP Aaron Rodgers?
The NFL is back. Sunday most definitely didn’t disappoint, even if your fantasy football team may have.