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Posted on: June 25, 2008 5:16 pm
 

Q&A with Aaron Ross

I had the chance to talk with Giants defensive back Aaron Ross this offseason, and he was obviously excited after a strong rookie season and winning the Super Bowl. The first-round pick out of Texas started nine games and finished with 42 tackles, three interceptions, nine passes defensed and one defensive touchdown.

Ross talked about the Giants' chances of repeating, the pressure Eli Manning is under and his thoughts on former Texas teammates Vince Young and Limas Sweed. Ross said he's going to miss playing with retired DE Michael Strahan because he made "my life a lot easier."

JE: How's your offseason going?

AR: It’s going good. It’s big since I’m not a rookie anymore.

JE: What was it like to win a Super Bowl as a rookie?

AR: The Super Bowl victory was amazing. It didn’t sink in until we got the rings. The ring justified all the praise we got and all the pats on the back. Winning the Super Bowl my first year was amazing.

JE: Did you really think you would beat the Patriots?

AR: There’s not one guy who didn’t believe we could win. We played them well the first matchup. We just felt like we matched up well with them.

JE: What was it like going up against Tom Brady, Randy Moss and Wes Welker?

AR: Those wide receivers are great. Every last one of them, from Moss to Welker to all the rest. Everybody was good out there, and the quarterback is great. But we put pressure on the receivers and on Brady. And our front four was great.

JE: Did you guys figure out a formula to stop their offense?

AR: I don’t know how to stop them. Those guys are talented. It’s not easy. They only had one loss for a reason. We were lucky enough to get pressure on Brady by our front four. Our coaches had a great game plan.

JE: What was your rookie year like?

AR: The beginning of the year I was like a lost duck. I was trying to find my way. Being a first-round pick, all eyes were on me, and it was a lot of pressure. It didn’t really calm down until Week 5. It was a lot to learn with trying to play nickel and corner at the same time. As the year went on I started loving my rookie year.

JE: How's the defense going to look this year?

AR: The defense is looking good. We’ve had some solid practices and we’re executing better because it’s the same system from last year. Our main focus now is execution and just getting better.

JE: Eli Manning played well down the stretch in 2007 and in the playoffs. How will he do in 2008?

AR: I think there’s going to be a lot more pressure on him. Now that he won a Super Bowl, the standards are higher. People are going to expect him to play every game like he did during the Super Bowl run. Now he’s got to improve on what he did last year and do it again.

JE: Could you imagine being Eli and the pressure he faces?

AR: I can’t. I couldn’t fill his shoes. In New York, they love you one day and hate you the next. He handles it well. He’s the best guy for the job.

JE: You faced some of the best receivers in the NFL last year. Who was the toughest?

AR: Oh man, I couldn't name them all. They were all good. Santana Moss, Randy Moss, Wes Welker, T.O. The list goes on and on.

JE: What's it like to cover T.O.?

AR: It’s hard. He’s a big guy that runs well. And he’s strong. Coach has to put in a great game plan for me to be successful. It’s hard to guard a guy like that. There has to be a great game plan and lots of film study.

JE: What's your mindset when you face an elite receiver?

AR: If you know you’re going against the best, you have to do extra film study, spend time going over the game plan, study your opponent. It’s tough. You have to be on your P’s and Q’s.

JE: How do you think WR Limas Sweed will do in his rookie season with the Steelers

AR: I hope he does really well except against us. He runs well. He’s big. He’s strong. He runs good routes. He can jump. He has all the tools. He just has to get in there and work and want to be successful.

JE: Is QB Vince Young ready to take the next step in his third year?

AR: All I know is he got better every year at Texas. He can beat you with his legs, and when you think he can’t throw, he’ll hit you for a 300-yard game. The sky’s the limit for Vince. He has an amazing arm. In college, I felt like I was watching a video game. It still feels that way some time.

Category: NFL
Tags: NFL
 
Posted on: June 23, 2008 5:16 pm
 

Marion Barber on the rise

Here is your job: Rank these running backs in order.

Washington's Clinton Portis, San Francisco's Frank Gore, Buffalo's Marshawn Lynch, Kansas City's Larry Johnson, Green Bay's Ryan Grant, Buffalo's Willis McGahee and Dallas' Marion Barber.

Here is my order: Barber, Gore, Portis, Johnson, Lynch, McGahee and Grant.

Just looking at what Barber did last year in a limited role -- 975 yards and 10 touchdowns and 44 catches for 282 yards and two touchdowns -- allowed him to finish as the No. 7 Fantasy RB in a standard scoring league. And now, Julius Jones is gone to Seattle.

Barber only had 204 carries in 2007, which ranked No. 21 in the NFL. If he can approach 300 carries and continue his 4.8-yards per carry average, he could be among the Top 5 or better this year. Because of his upside, he tops this list and makes him the No. 6 Fantasy RB in my mind right now.

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 19, 2008 12:29 pm
 

Mock Draft Thursday's

Every Thursday from now until the season starts I will be taking part in a mock draft with random users. Maybe you can get lucky -- or unlucky, depending on how you feel -- and get me in one of your drafts.

I did my first one today, and it was very interesting. I would encourage all of you to take part in as many mock drafts as possible heading into your league draft because it is a great way to determine how your draft might go and give you tips on what to expect.

Some of the topics discussed in our chat log:

Ken Is that the real, live Eisenberg?
Jamey Yes, it's me.
Ken We're in the presence of greatness!
Jamey Feel free to ask any questions.
Ken It's like going to a cooking class, and finding it's taught by Wolfgang Puck!
James Cool.

Ken Jamey, do you expect Marshawn Lynch's legal...um...opportunities to effect his performance? Should we take him anyway?
Jamey As of now, continue to draft Lynch as a low-end No. 1/high No. 2 ... He could miss time, but hard to say now.
James I don't believe he misses time.
Andrew NFL wheels of justice seem to be selective. . . 
chip I live up here in western N.Y. and watch the news every day... And from what I'm hearing , It's not gonna be that big of a deal...
James That is what I am thinking, Chip

Ken Loved Jonathan Stewart at Oregon Is he ready to roll?
Jamey I like Stewart a lot, he's going to get yards and TDs in Carolina
Ken Thanks

Robert What do you think of K. Smith in Detroit?
Jamey I like Smith a lot also since he's going to start ... the offense in Detroit is going to change a lot with Martz gone
James I still believe Calhoun is a dark horse in Detroit...guy really never got a chance with injuries.
James If he can stay healthy, Smith and him could be a solid 1-2 punch.
Jamey agreed, but i think calhoun only gets a chance if Smith is hurt
Ken Radio here in Detroit, still thinks Tatum is starting
James Not to be harsh...Bell sucks.
Jamey Never a good thing when you show up to minicamp out of shape, which is what Bell did
Ken Agree.. fumbles a lot
chip The only time Bell did anything was in Denver...

Matt jamey do you like being at front or back of draft order
Jamey Matt, I really don't have a preference, but being in the front gives you more options in Round 2-3 but less talent.
Matt cool thanks

chip Do u think Chicago goes out and gets a veteran like a K.Jones ? ? ? 
Jamey If you click on Forte's update today, you can find out about that. Lovie said no.
chip Awesome ! ! 1

Robert where do you think Alexander and Jones will land?
Jamey I think Alexander will wait to see if a starter gets hurt, but it wouldn't surprise me if he went to Denver
Jamey Jones to New England makes senses because they can keep him on the bench until they need him 

chip Not to overload u with ques. after ques. but as a Die Hard Chiefs fan How do think L.J. does this yr. with the additions they hav 
Jamey I think LJ has a bounce-back year ... he won't be a stud like he was before the injury, but 1,200 yds is likely 
James Word out of KC is that Edwards is going to use more of a RBBC with Smith and Charles 
Jamey Yes, the Chiefs will use Smith and Charles more, but LJ is still the guy there.
chip Smith and Charles will see the field... But give me a break... L.J. is a beast and will always be...
James I am not downplaying LJ's potential...but he was overused and Edwards cannot afford him being out long term 

chip Whats your take on Darren McFadden ? ? ? 
chip I don't know how to gauge him this yr.
Jamey McFadden will be good, if you take him as a rookie RB on a bad team. If you take him to be the next AP, you will be disappointed
Jamey Good No. 3 option or No. 2 depending on how you build your team
Robert so Fargas still the starter?
Jamey As of now, yes ... but McFadden will start before long

Brendon is there any way that Portis can stay healthy for 2 seasons 
Jamey Yes, Portis should be fine ... He should be great in this offense.
chip I really like Portis... And the funny thing is... Is that he's still young as hell... 
Jamey Yeah, 27 this year
James Zorn should use Portis more effectively than Gibbs did...IMO

chip Scheffler or Shockey ? ? ? 
Jamey Scheffler has more upside
chip Yeah , I agree.. 

Matt Jamey what do you think of James Hardy
chip Ask him in a year from now...
Jamey I like Hardy, but he still plays for a young QB in Edwards ... should be good for TDs
Robert I think it depends on the Lynch issue and how well Edwards does

Here are the rosters:

The setup was QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, TE, RB-WR flex, K, DST

Jamey
QB 7 (#82) McNabb, Donovan (QB PHI)
RB 1 (#10) Portis, Clinton (RB WAS)
RB 3 (#34) Stewart, Jonathan (RB CAR)
WR 2 (#15) Edwards, Braylon (WR CLE)
WR 6 (#63) Johnson, Calvin (WR DET)
TE 10 (#111) Daniels, Owen (TE HOU)
RB-WR 4 (#39) Bush, Reggie (RB NO)
K 14 (#159) Kaeding, Nate (K SD)
DST 13 (#154) Eagles, DST (DST PHI)
RS 9 (#106) Manning, Eli (QB NYG)
RS 5 (#58) James, Edgerrin (RB ARI)
RS 8 (#87) Galloway, Joey (WR TB)
RS 11 (#130) Johnson, Bryant (WR SF)
RS 12 (#135) Jackson, Vincent (WR SD)

Comment: I love the running backs and flex spot. Receivers are questionable outside of Edwards, but I was pleased.

Brendon
QB 5 (#60) Roethlisberger, Ben (QB PIT)
RB 3 (#36) Johnson, Rudi (RB CIN)
RB 4 (#37) White, LenDale (RB TEN)
WR 1 (#12) Moss, Randy (WR NE)
WR 2 (#13) Owens, Terrell (WR DAL)
TE 7 (#84) Davis, Vernon (TE SF)
RB-WR 6 (#61) Bowe, Dwayne (WR KC)
K 10 (#109) Dawson, Phil (K CLE)
DST 8 (#85) Chargers, DST (DST SD)
RS 9 (#108) Young, Vince (QB TEN)
RS 12 (#133) Bush, Michael (RB OAK)
RS 13 (#156) Williams, Cadillac (RB TB)
RS 11 (#132) Gaffney, Jabar (WR NE)
RS 14 (#157) Utecht, Ben (TE CIN)

Comment: Can't ask for better starting receivers than Moss and Owens, but his running backs have a lot of questions coming into the season.

Chip
QB 8 (#86) Cutler, Jay (QB DEN)
RB 1 (#11) Barber, Marion (RB DAL)
RB 2 (#14) Johnson, Larry (RB KC)
WR 3 (#35) Burress, Plaxico (WR NYG)
WR 6 (#62) Ward, Hines (WR PIT)
TE 10 (#110) Scheffler, Tony (TE DEN)
RB-WR 4 (#38) Jacobs, Brandon (RB NYG)
K 11 (#131) Vinatieri, Adam (K IND)
DST 13 (#155) Giants, DST (DST NYG)
RS 14 (#158) Bradshaw, Ahmad (RB NYG)
RS 5 (#59) Forte, Matt (RB CHI)
RS 7 (#83) Evans, Lee (WR BUF)
RS 9 (#107) McAllister, Deuce (RB NO)
RS 12 (#134) Peterson, Adrian (RB CHI)

Comment: Great collection of running backs, especially with Forte as his fourth. Receiver could be a problem, as well as QB, but this team is solid. Chips obviously likes the Giants.

Andrew
QB 6 (#65) Garrard, David (QB JAC)
RB 1 (#8) Lynch, Marshawn (RB BUF)
RB 2 (#17) Grant, Ryan (RB GB)
WR 4 (#41) Williams, Roy (WR DET)
WR 5 (#56) Holmes, Santonio (WR PIT)
TE 12 (#137) McMichael, Randy (TE STL)
RB-WR 3 (#32) Jones-Drew, Maurice (RB JAC)
K 14 (#161) Reed, Jeff (K PIT)
DST 10 (#113) Seahawks, DST (DST SEA)
RS 9 (#104) Schaub, Matt (QB HOU)
RS 7 (#80) Jones, Felix (RB DAL)
RS 8 (#89) Johnson, Chris (RB TEN)
RS 11 (#128) Brown, Reggie (WR PHI)
RS 13 (#152) Bruce, Isaac (WR SF)

Comment: This is a solid team, although depth at receiver could be an issue. Andrew went the route of QB by committee by not drafting a legit starter.

Ken
QB 2 (#18) Romo, Tony (QB DAL)
RB 1 (#7) Addai, Joseph (RB IND)
RB 4 (#42) Parker, Willie (RB PIT)
WR 3 (#31) Smith, Steve (WR CAR)
WR 6 (#66) Harrison, Marvin (WR IND)
TE 5 (#55) Cooley, Chris (TE WAS)
RB-WR 7 (#79) Driver, Donald (WR GB)
K 12 (#138) Folk, Nick (K DAL)
DST 10 (#114) Jaguars, DST (DST JAC)
RS 8 (#90) Rivers, Philip (QB SD)
RS 13 (#151) Sproles, Darren (RB SD)
RS 14 (#162) Rhodes, Dominic (RB IND)
RS 11 (#127) Olsen, Greg (TE CHI)
RS 9 (#103) Washington, Leon (RB NYJ)

Comment: Very solid team, although depth at RB could be an issue. If Parker loses touchdowns to Mendenhall as expected, Ken could struggle.

Tipsy
QB 1 (#9) Brady, Tom (QB NE)
RB 2 (#16) McGahee, Willis (RB BAL)
RB 3 (#33) McFadden, Darren (RB OAK)
WR 5 (#57) Marshall, Brandon (WR DEN)
WR 7 (#81) Coles, Laveranues (WR NYJ)
TE 6 (#64) Gonzalez, Tony (TE KC)
RB-WR 4 (#40) Brown, Ronnie (RB MIA)
K 9 (#105) Gostkowski, Stephen (K NE)
DST 8 (#88) Bears, DST (DST CHI)
RS 11 (#129) Garcia, Jeff (QB TB)
RS 12 (#136) Williams, DeAngelo (RB CAR)
RS 10 (#112) Engram, Bobby (WR SEA)
RS 13 (#153) Rice, Sidney (WR MIN)
RS 14 (#160) Crumpler, Alge (TE TEN)

Comment: I like this team a lot but there are a couple of "ifs" that need to have positive results, notably Marshall's arm and Brown's knee. If those hold up, this team is great.

James
QB 4 (#44) Palmer, Carson (QB CIN)
RB 1 (#5) Gore, Frank (RB SF)
RB 3 (#29) Jones, Julius (RB SEA)
WR 2 (#20) Fitzgerald, Larry (WR ARI)
WR 5 (#53) Jennings, Greg (WR GB)
TE 6 (#68) Clark, Dallas (TE IND)
RB-WR 7 (#77) Berrian, Bernard (WR MIN)
K 12 (#140) Brown, Josh (K STL)
DST 13 (#149) Packers, DST (DST GB)
RS 10 (#116) Delhomme, Jake (QB CAR)
RS 14 (#164) Carlson, John (TE SEA)
RS 8 (#92) Mendenhall, Rashard (RB PIT)
RS 9 (#101) Cotchery, Jerricho (WR NYJ)
RS 11 (#125) Brown, Chris (RB HOU)

Comment: Great receivers with Fitgerald, Jennings and Berrian, and solid starters at RB with Gore and Jones. Depth at RB could be an issue.

Lamar
QB 6 (#70) Bulger, Marc (QB STL)
RB 1 (#3) Jackson, Steven (RB STL)
RB 2 (#22) Graham, Earnest (RB TB)
WR 3 (#27) Colston, Marques (WR NO)
WR 7 (#75) White, Roddy (WR ATL)
TE 5 (#51) Gates, Antonio (TE SD)
RB-WR 4 (#46) Turner, Michael (RB ATL)
K 13 (#147) Rackers, Neil (K ARI)
DST 14 (#166) Buccaneers, DST (DST TB)
RS 10 (#118) Campbell, Jason (QB WAS)
RS 8 (#94) Torain, Ryan (RB DEN)
RS 9 (#99) Clayton, Mark (WR BAL)
RS 11 (#123) Porter, Jerry (WR JAC)
RS 12 (#142) Ward, Derrick (RB NYG)

Comment: Another team I like a lot, but if the Rams struggle again, Lamar is done. But he has studs at running back, tight end and at least one elite receiver in Colston.

John
QB 1 (#4) Manning, Peyton (QB IND)
RB 2 (#21) Lewis, Jamal (RB CLE)
RB 5 (#52) Jones, Thomas (RB NYJ)
WR 3 (#28) Holt, Torry (WR STL)
WR 4 (#45) Johnson, Chad (WR CIN)
TE 8 (#93) Heap, Todd (TE BAL)
RB-WR 6 (#69) Chambers, Chris (WR SD)
K 10 (#117) Graham, Shayne (K CIN)
DST 9 (#100) Colts, DST (DST IND)
RS 12 (#141) Kitna, Jon (QB DET)
RS 13 (#148) Williams, Ricky (RB MIA)
RS 11 (#124) Walker, Javon (WR OAK)
RS 14 (#165) Curry, Ronald (WR OAK)
RS 7 (#76) Crayton, Patrick (WR DAL)

Comment: This team is solid, but John has a lot of question marks in Lewis and Johnson. I don't think Lewis does well this year, and Johnson could struggle. John also took Manning ahead of Brady.

Robert
QB 3 (#25) Brees, Drew (QB NO)
RB 1 (#1) Tomlinson, LaDainian (RB SD)
RB 4 (#48) Young, Selvin (RB DEN)
WR 2 (#24) Johnson, Andre (WR HOU)
WR 5 (#49) Boldin, Anquan (WR ARI)
TE 7 (#73) Miller, Heath (TE PIT)
RB-WR 6 (#72) Moss, Santana (WR WAS)
K 13 (#145) Crosby, Mason (K GB)
DST 10 (#120) Redskins, DST (DST WAS)
RS 14 (#168) Edwards, Trent (QB BUF)
RS 12 (#144) Shockey, Jeremy (TE NYG)
RS 8 (#96) Fargas, Justin (RB OAK)
RS 9 (#97) Stallworth, Donte' (WR CLE)
RS 11 (#121) Norwood, Jerious (RB ATL)

Comment: Robert has a great team with LT, Brees, Johnson and Boldin. If Young pans out, this could be the team to beat, although he would have been better off taking another RB instead of a backup TE.

Matt
QB 3 (#26) Anderson, Derek (QB CLE)
RB 1 (#2) Peterson, Adrian (RB MIN)
RB 4 (#47) Smith, Kevin (RB DET)
WR 2 (#23) Houshmandzadeh, T.J. (WR CIN)
WR 6 (#71) Gonzalez, Anthony (WR IND)
TE 5 (#50) Witten, Jason (TE DAL)
RB-WR 7 (#74) Taylor, Fred (RB JAC)
K 12 (#143) Bironas, Rob (K TEN)
DST 9 (#98) Steelers, DST (DST PIT)
RS 14 (#167) Dunn, Warrick (RB TB)
RS 8 (#95) Green, Ahman (RB HOU)
RS 10 (#119) Burleson, Nate (WR SEA)
RS 11 (#122) Hardy, James (WR BUF)
RS 13 (#146) Cowboys, DST (DST DAL)

Comment: I like this team a lot also, and Burleson probably ends up starting ahead of Gonzalez. He has a solid mix of running backs and receivers with veterans and youth. But never draft two defenses.

Ken
QB 7 (#78) Hasselbeck, Matt (QB SEA)
RB 1 (#6) Westbrook, Brian (RB PHI)
RB 3 (#30) Maroney, Laurence (RB NE)
WR 2 (#19) Wayne, Reggie (WR IND)
WR 4 (#43) Welker, Wes (WR NE)
TE 5 (#54) Winslow, Kellen (TE CLE)
RB-WR 9 (#102) Taylor, Chester (RB MIN)
K 13 (#150) Scobee, Josh (K JAC)
DST 6 (#67) Vikings, DST (DST MIN)
RS 8 (#91) Rodgers, Aaron (QB GB)
RS 14 (#163) Branch, Deion (WR SEA)
RS 10 (#115) Curtis, Kevin (WR PHI)
RS 11 (#126) Bell, Tatum (RB DET)
RS 12 (#139) Patriots, DST (DST NE)

Comment: This team has great balance with solid running backs and quarterbacks and an elite tight end. If Hasselbeck performs to last year's level, this could be the team to beat.

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 18, 2008 12:33 pm
 

Mock Draft

I recently did a mock draft with Fantasy experts from other sites. I had the fourth overall pick. The scoring system was standard except four points for all passing touchdowns and receptions count. The starting lineup is 2-3 running backs or 3-4 receivers depending on your flex. Needless to say, I like this team.

Steven Jackson, RB, Rams

Braylon Edwards, WR, Browns

Darren McFadden, RB, Raiders

Roy Williams, WR, Lions

Greg Jennings, WR, Packers

Derek Anderson, QB, Browns

Rudi Johnson, RB, Bengals

Chester Taylor, RB, Vikings

Vincent Jackson, WR, Chargers

Heath Miller, TE, Steelers

Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers

Ryan Torain, RB, Broncos

Fred Jackson, RB, Bills

Tatum Bell, RB, Lions

Ernest Wilford, WR, Dolphins

Donnie Avery, WR, Rams

Neil Rackers, K, Cardinals

Jaguars DST

My starting lineup will be:

QB - Anderson

RB - Jackson, McFadden, Johnson

WR - Edwards, Williams, Jennings

TE - Miller

K - Rackers

DST - Jags

My running backs and receivers are going to be hard to beat, especially getting Rudi Johnson so late. Anderson is a Top 5 QB, and I have plenty of depth at the key spots. This is a playoff-caliber Fantasy squad.

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 10, 2008 5:14 pm
 

The best rookie running back in 2008 will be ...

Dave Richard and I have been having this debate about the best rookie running back in 2008 on video and pocasts for the past couple of weeks.

Now that Cedric Benson was released by Chicago, our rank list has changed with Matt Forte moving up the list. Forte has the chance to start for the Bears, but you can also expect him to split carries with Adrian Peterson.

As to the rookie rankings for running backs in 2008 alone, here is my list:

1. Jonathan Stewart, Carolina. Comment: Has the chance for yards and touchdowns as the workhorse in the offense.

2. Darren McFadden, Oakland. Comment: Will catch plenty of passes and still get share of carries in crowded backfield but might not score much.

3. Kevin Smith, Detroit. Comment: The Lions are looking for a workhorse, and Smith has the running style to change Detroit from a pass-happy offense to a ground attack.

4. Matt Forte, Chicago. Comment: With Cedric Benson gone, Forte could get 20-plus touches and has the chance for 1,000 total yards in an offense crying out for playmakers.

5. Ryan Torain, Denver. Comment: The Broncos released Travis Henry because they have faith in Torain, who will share carries with Michael Pittman behind starter Selvin Young.

6. Felix Jones, Dallas. Comment: Jones should do better than Julius Jones, and if Marion Barber gets hurt, Felix Jones should thrive. Only concern is another rookie, Tashard Choice, stealing carries.

7. Chris Johnson, Tennessee. Comment: He was drafted in the first round for a reason. Johnson won't start ahead of LenDale White, but he could see time at receiver.

8. Rashard Mendenhall, Pittsburgh. Comment: He might not get many yards if Willie Parker is healthy, but I like the potential for touchdowns.

9. Ray Rice, Baltimore. Comment: If something happens to Willis McGahee than Rice will be the focal point of the offense.

10. Steve Slaton, Houston. Comment: Ahman Green is fragile, and Chris Brown has never set the Fantasy world on fire. If Slaton is No. 2 on the depth chart in Houston then he could be a nice player in 2008.

Honorable mentions: Jamaal Charles (Kansas City), Jacob Hester (San Diego), Tashard Choice (Dallas) and Tim Hightower (Arizona)

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 6, 2008 2:18 pm
 

Who would you rather have?

Who would you rather have on your Fantasy team in 2008?

We're doing position battles on every team, but I'd like to know what you're thinking. So post a comment here on who you think will be a better fit for your Fantasy team. Then compare to what Dave Richard and I think about who will win certain position battles in training camp.

Arizona: Matt Leinart or Kurt Warner at starting QB? ... Marcel Shipp, J.J. Arrington or Tim Hightower at backup RB?

Atlanta: Matt Ryan or Chris Redman at starting QB? ... Laurent Robinson or Michael Jenkins at No. 2 WR?

Baltimore: Joe Flacco or Kyle Boller at starting QB?

Buffalo: James Hardy or Roscoe Parrish at No. 2 WR?

Carolina: Jonathan Stewart or DeAngelo Williams at starting RB? ... D.J. Hackett or Muhsin Muhammad at No. 2 WR?

Chicago: Cedric Benson or Matt Forte at starting RB? ... Rex Grossman or Kyle Orton at starting QB?

Cincinnati: Kenny Watson, Chris Perry or Kenny Irons at backup RB? ... Jerome Simpson or Andre Caldwell at No. 3 WR?

Cleveland: Donte Stallworth or Joe Jurevicius at No. 2 WR?

Dallas: Felix Jones or Tashard Choice at backup RB? ... Terry Glenn or Patrick Crayton at No. 2 WR?

Denver: Selvin Young, Michael Pittman or Ryan Torain at starting RB? ... Darrell Jackson or Brandon Stokley at No. 2 WR

Detroit: Kevin Smith or Tatum Bell at starting RB?

Green Bay: Brandon Jackson or DeShawn Wynn at backup RB?

Houston: Ahman Green, Steve Slaton or Chris Brown at starting RB? ... Kevin Walter, Andre Davis or Jacoby Jones at No. 2 WR?

Indianapolis: Marvin Harrison or Anthony Gonzalez at No. 2 WR? ... Dominic Rhodes or Kenton Keith at backup RB?

Jacksonville: Reggie Williams, Matt Jones or Troy Williamson at No. 2 WR?

Kansas City: Brodie Croyle or Damon Huard at starting QB? ... Jamaal Charles or Kolby Smith at backup RB? ... Devard Darling or Jeff Webb at No. 2 WR?

Miami: Josh McCown, Josh Beck or Chad Henne at starting QB? ... Ronnie Brown or Ricky Williams at starting RB?

Minnesota: Sidney Rice or Bobby Wade at No. 2 WR?

New England: Jabar Gaffney or Chad Jackson at No. 3 WR? ... Sammy Morris or Kevin Faulk at backup RB?

New Orleans: David Patten, Lance Moore, Devery Henderson or Robert Meachem at No. 2 WR?

New York Giants: Steve Smith, Sinorice Moss or Mario Manningham at No. 3 WR? ... Derrick Ward or Ahmad Bradshaw at backup RB?

New York Jets: Chad Pennington or Kellen Clemens at starting QB? ... Dustin Keller or Chris Baker at starting TE?

Oakland: Darren McFadden, Justin Fargas or Michael Bush at starting RB?

Philadelphia: Lorenzo Booker, Correll Buckhalter or Tony Hunt at backup RB?

Pittsburgh: Rashard Mendenhall or Najeh Davenport at backup RB? ... Limas Sweed or Nate Washington at No. 3 WR?

St. Louis: Drew Bennett or Donnie Avery at No. 2 WR? ... Brian Leonard or Antonio Pittman at backup RB?

San Diego: Darren Sproles or Jacob Hester at backup RB?

San Francisco: Alex Smith or Shaun Hill at starting QB?

Seattle: Nate Burleson or Ben Obomanu at No. 2 WR? ... T.J. Duckett or Maurice Morris at backup RB?

Tampa Bay:  Cadillac Williams or Warrick Dunn at backup RB?

Tennessee: Chris Johnson or Chris Henry at backup RB?

Washington: Devin Thomas, Malcolm Kelly or Antwaan Randle El at No. 2 WR?

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 3, 2008 3:59 pm
 

Chad Johnson to show up

In a surprising development, Bengals WR Chad Johnson said Tuesday he will show up to mandatory minicamp next week.

Johnson said he doesn't want to get fined, which could be $8,000 maximum by the Bengals if he were to miss the entire camp. If he missed training camp, Johnson could be fined $14,288 a day.

But now Johnson plans to report, which is great sign for Fantasy owners. He might not be as productive as recent seasons and could pout, but Johnson is a solid No. 1 option when he's on. And if he's playing with the motivation for a new contract or to get traded, Johnson could be great.

If you like Johnson, you'll want to draft him somewhere in the end of the fourth round or beginning of the fifth, and he will be one of those players who make or break your season.

So the question is, do you draft Chad Johnson this year as a starting Fantasy option?

Category: NFL
Posted on: June 2, 2008 5:16 pm
 

Here we go again in Denver

The Broncos released Travis Henry on Monday. Here is the update ...

The Denver Broncos released RB Travis Henry on Monday, saying his commitment to the team was in question. The Broncos signed Henry to a five-year, $22.5 million contract in March 2007. He was hampered by injuries in his only season in Denver, rushing for 691 yards on 167 carries with four touchdowns. Henry injured a hamstring while running 100-yard sprints late last month. The NFL told him in September he had failed a test for marijuana and would be suspended for a year, but he challenged the test and the punishment and won. Before joining the Broncos, Henry played for Tennessee and Buffalo. "We did not feel his commitment to the Broncos ! was enough to warrant a spot on this football team," coach Mike Shanahan said in a written statement. "Although Travis has the ability to be one of the top running backs in the NFL, we have to make decisions that are in the best interests of our organization and its goal of winning a Super Bowl."

With Henry gone, here are some thoughts on the fallout.

- Selvin Young will start for the Broncos. Last year, Young filled in for an injured Henry and rushed for 729 yards and one touchdown and caught 35 passes for 231 yards. Shanahan said earlier this offseason that Young is not "ideal for 10 to 15 carries a game," which means Young will share carries. But go into the season with Young as a No. 3 Fantasy option at this point.

- Ryan Torain should be drafted in all leagues. The Broncos drafted Torain out of Arizona State in the fifth round, and he's already being hailed as the next Terrell Davis, another late-round pick who starred for the Broncos. Shanahan likes Torain a lot, which means he could eventually be the starter. For now, he will work into the rotation behind Young, but Torain is a great option with a late-round pick and a middle-round selection in keeper formats.

- Michael Pittman and Andre Hall are even worth drafting. The Broncos signed Pittman last week, and he will now get some carries also and possibly play on third downs. Hall also could get touches, especially with Young being injury prone and Torain a rookie.

- Henry will find a job. Some team will bring him in for a low salary, and he could start for the right team if Detroit or Chicago come calling. Keep an eye on what develops, but Henry will still be considered a No. 4 Fantasy option. He's only 29 and has something left to offer if his knees hold up.

It's back to running back by committee in Denver, but one guy will hopefully step up and assume the role. Young will be given the first chance, but Torain is the sleeper to keep an eye on.

Category: NFL
 
 
 
 
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