Jul 28, 2007
First I’d like to welcome Jim Coventry as a Keeper League co-blogger here. He comes highly recommeded by Big John and hopefully together we can give you enough reasons to check in on this bad boy. We’ll give it a shot anyway.
Although this is just a re-drafter, I thought I would post links to a FanEx draft I’m currently taking part in. FanEx has become a 24 team affair with two parallel 12-team leagues competing for the strap in a 17 week schedule.
I’m partners with Carlos Panizo of STATS, Inc. and Howard Balzer of USA Today Sports Weekly and we’re knocking heads with some of the best in the business including reps for FF Index, ESPN.com, FF Pro Forecast, FanBall, FF Mastermind and others.
If you check back in, I’ll offer up the reasoning behind the picks as we go along. Hopefully these links are clickable. If not, you may have to cut and paste the URL on your own.
– FanEx Draft –
– FanEx Rosters –
Here are the overviews of our picks:
1.03 – RB Frank Gore, San Francisco
Most of the pundits have decided the Top Three this year are LT, Steven Jackson and Larry Johnson and I maybe wouldn’t disagree with them in a normal year, but this go around is different – Johnson has karma stank written all over him.
Let’s face facts. Johnson has shouldered an incredible load the last season and half. Something like 600+ carries over the past 24 games. That’s a TON of wear and tear. Not to mention the off-season retirement of OG Will Shields coupled with the retirement of Willie Roaf last off-season.
Most importantly though, at the time I made the pick LJ was threatening a holdout that has since come to fruitition. And with my opinion that Johnson is not only a malcontent, but a bull-headed malcontent, why take the risk with the 1.03 on a player with so many red flags?
Oh yeah, and the Chiefs have the 6th hardest schedule against the run with a new quarterback under center and Priest Holmes back in the mix. No thanks.
Frank Gore only ranked a handful of points less than Johnson in this PPR format and still has some untapped upside at the goal line. And has no meaningful competition. And he’s gonna PLAY. Adios, Larry!
2.10 – WR Steve Smith, Carolina
My senior partner, Carlos Panizo, and I generally alternate picks and this one was a Panizo special.
I was thinking / hoping he’d go RB, but in a 2RB-3WR-1TE-1 Flex starting formation taking the best player available early is usually a sound strategy. And with Smith we’re scoring one of the best WRs in the game – an explosive game-breaker with unlimited upside.
The alternatives were RBs like Caddilac Williams or Marshawn Lynch.
3.03 – WR Terrell Owens, Dallas
On the surface this seemed like a tough call, given that you usually like to nail down two RBs in your first three rounds if you can. And it was a nailbiter to be sure, until you look at T.O.s pedigree.
In a PPR format this guy has been Top 5 money for years (#2 last year). His chemistry with Tony Romo is rock solid and, right or wrong, with his nemesis Bill Parcells out of the picture, I look for Owens to not only command (and recieve) the ball, but post a monster year.
I could seriously see him being the #1 wideout. Now next year might be a different matter, but for this year I think TOs ego will help propel him to the stratosphere to make his point. Time will tell.
The only alternate choice considered was Marshawn Lynch.
4.10 – WR Calvin Johnson, Detroit
Oh my! A 1QB, 2RB, 3WR, 1TE, 1 Flex, 1K, 1D starting line-up format and my partner takes a third wideout with the last feature back RBs slipping off the board. And with a reach on a rookie, at that.
Needless to say I wasn’t particularly thrilled. But I have to say, this has happened a dozen times over in our past drafts. Panizo makes a pick, I roll my eyes and thinks he’s nuts, and the player pans out. He did just such a thing with Reggie Wayne a few years back. Wayne wasn’t a rookie, but was far from an elite player and he finished in the Top 7.
Were it me, I would have taken Brandon Jacobs and not looked back.
5.03 – RB Adrian Peterson, Minnesota
Well, the Johnson pick really put my feet to the fire. I -have- to take an RB and the choices are not appealing – Jamal Lewis, Fred Taylor and Lamont Jordan among others.
So, after considerable deliberation I figured if we’re in for a dime swinging for the fences with Calvin Johnson, we might as well double up and run with the other explosive playmaker in April’s draft, AP.
Our FanEx drafts have always been solid, making the playoffs about 75% of the time, but we’ve never taken the title. So it will be interesting to see how this plays out.
BTW, had Carlos taken Jacobs at 4.10, I would have almost certainly countered with QB Tom Brady or Marc Bulger. As it stands now, we’ll have to let QB slide and then shotgun with 2-4 second, third and fourth tier guys.
6.10 – TE Tony Gonzales, Kansas City
As the pick approached I floated the name of Gonzales to my partner (since it was his pick) and told him if Gonzo is there and you take him, consider it my pick and you make the 7.03. Well, he did and we did. Finally a solid veteran and at a nice value slot in the draft!
We’re still iffy at RB and QB, but our start has real potential.
RB: Gore, A Peterson
WR: S Smith, Owens, C Johnson
I like it.
More to come.