Posted on: February 22, 2008 4:40 pm

Football Mock Draft

The Fantasy Football season might be over, but that doesn't mean we get an extended vacation. It would be nice, though. One thing Dave Richard and I recently did was take part in a mock draft with the guys at 

It was 12 teams, 14 rounds, standard scoring and we started the day after the Super Bowl.  I had the fifth pick in a snake draft.

Round 1: Tom Brady, QB, New England

I wish I could play out different leagues in the offseason to see what strategy works best. My preference is to always go two or sometimes three running backs right out of the gate, but I'm leaning toward quarterbacks lately because of the value they bring. If you have the chance to take Brady, Peyton Manning or even Tony Romo next year, my advice right now is to take him. The way last year went, you can mix and match with running backs and wide receivers and still be successful.

Round 2: Earnest Graham, RB, Tampa Bay

Cadillac Williams won't be ready for a while, if at all, next season. That means Graham will be able to carry the load for a full season, and I like what I saw from him last year. Graham isn't an ideal No. 1 running back, but he has potential to give me 1,200 yards rushing and double digits in touchdowns.

Round 3: Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, Jacksonville

I love Jones-Drew in 2008 because Fred Taylor will start to break down at some point in the season, and Jones-Drew will pounce on the opportunity. It's also his third season, so look for MJD to get back to scoring plenty of touchdowns and increase his yardage total.

Round 4: Kellen Winslow, TE, Cleveland

This was a risky pick for several reasons. In a three-wide receiver league, I took a tight end first, which again goes against every draft strategy I preach. I also took Winslow ahead of Antonio Gates and even Jason Witten. But Winslow, like Gates, is more like a wide receiver than a tight end. And I think Winslow is going to be the No. 1 tight end in the NFL in 2008.

Round 5: Hines Ward, WR, Pittsburgh

Ward is a solid No. 2 Fantasy wide receiver, but he will have to be my No. 1 guy in 2008. I'm hoping Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense remains pass-happy in 2008 because that would mean good things for Ward and Fantasy owners.

Round 6: Donald Driver, WR, Green Bay

Like Ward, Driver is a good No. 2 Fantasy option. But he's a high catch guy, and his touchdown total from 2007 will improve. Brett Favre will return for one more season, and Driver will be playing for a contract in 2008.

Round 7: Michael Bush, RB, Oakland

This is probably my worst pick of the draft. I took Bush just days before Justin Fargas resigned with the team. Not that I thought Bush would get 20-plus carries in 2008, but I figured he would get an extended look and be productive. Now it appears he'll be part of a tandem. And the worst thing -- Fargas was still on the board when I took Bush. Hey, we all have to reach some time.

Round 8: Santana Moss, WR, Washington

I like Moss as a No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver. He's not going to put up overwhelming stats on a weekly basis, but as we know the potential is there for an explosive game every three or four weeks. If you have enough talent in place on your roster, Moss can be a useful Fantasy weapon.

Round 9: Reggie Brown, WR, Philadelphia

Brown could be a great sleeper in 2008. With Donovan McNabb healthy for a full season, Brown should thrive. He played well toward the end of 2007 and has the potential to be a solid wide receiver in the NFL. If you can get Brown as a No. 3 or 4 Fantasy wide receiver, that's a great move in your draft.

Round 10: Maurice Morris, RB, Seattle

Shaun Alexander's days with the Seahawks are numbered. I love getting Morris as a backup running back because he will eventually be a starter at some point in 2008.

Round 11: Adrian Peterson, RB, Chicago

At this point I started looking at running backs who play behind injured or fragile starters. And with Cedric Benson coming off injury, Peterson could be good value in later rounds.

Round 12: Donte Stallworth, WR, New England

I didn't like any of the other wide receivers on the board here, and if by chance Randy Moss left or Stallworth was sent packing, his value would change. Otherwise Stallworth will just be a low-end Fantasy option in 2008 and only useful on a bye week or as an injury replacement.

Round 13: New York Giants

If they can sack the quarterback at the same level in 2007, then this defense is going to remain a tremendous Fantasy option. And if they fix the secondary, they could be the No. 1 defense in the NFL.

Round 14: Shayne Graham, K, Cincinnati

I always like to get a good kicker who plays for an explosive offense. Graham fits the bill.


Category: NFL
Posted on: February 22, 2008 11:42 am

NBA trade deadline

The NBA trade deadline has finally passed, and unfortunately it might be the most exciting part of the season. I know, the playoffs, especially in the Western Conference, will be exciting, but did you ever notice people spend more time talking about the NBA than actually watching it?

Let's just hope there's as much enthusiasm following the moves made as there was keeping an eye on what happened. So let's take a look at the five winners and losers in the trade market.


Lakers: Getting Pau Gasol makes them the favorite in the Western Conference since they got him for spare parts. It also ensures even if they fail to win a title that Kobe Bryant will be excited about returning to Los Angeles next season.

Suns: Phoenix wasn't going to win a championship with Shawn Marion and their old style. They needed to get better in the half court, and Shaquille O'Neal will help that. Don't worry about the Suns slowing down. Remember the Showtime Lakers in the 80s? Their center was 40-year-old Kareer Abdul-Jabbar. Did he stop Magic Johnson from getting up and down the court? I don't think so.

Jazz: Maybe the most underrated trade was Utah getting Kyle Korver from Philadelphia. Korver provides another shooter to go with Carlos Boozer, Deron Williams, Mehmet Okur and Andrei Kirilenko. That's as good a closing lineup as any team in the Western Conference, and they have a great coach in Jerry Sloan.

Spurs: Subtlety is a lost quality, and the Spurs made a nice move in getting Kurt Thomas from Seattle. He's a solid defender to put on Shaq, and he also can be useful in guarding Gasol. And if the Spurs make it out of the Western Conference, he could guard Kevin Garnett or Rasheed Wallace and keep Tim Duncan from getting in foul trouble.

Mavericks: When you add Jason Kidd to a mix of Dirk Nowitzki, Josh Howard and Jason Terry, only good things will come of it. There will be an adjustment period because Dallas isn't used to a pass-happy offense, but Kidd will help the Mavericks get plenty of easy baskets and keep them in contention with the other top teams out West.


Nuggets: The only team in the Western Conference with two All-Star starters could be in trouble. At best, they will be the No. 7 seed in the playoffs, which means they will have to win on the road. I like the Nuggets roster, and they essentially added a player with the return of Kenyon Martin coming back from his knee injury. But Denver could miss the playoffs, which would be a travesty with a team featuring Allen Iverson, Carmelo Anthony and Marcus Camby.

Knicks: No team wants to take on the headaches of Zach Randolph and Eddy Curry. That means the Knicks are stuck with them, and the rebuiding process will continue for several more years in what should be the basketball mecca of New York.

Celtics: Boston has enough to win the Eastern Conference, even with Detroit and Cleveland making moves for the playoffs. But can the Celtics overcome a lack of depth to win the championship? I don't know if they can. Adding another point guard and/or another big man would have helped.

Bulls: Chicago takes on the contract of Larry Hughes, who along with the emergence of Thabo Sefolosha could mean Ben Gordon is gone soon. For as much as Ben Wallace was a terrible fit with the Bulls, I'd rather pay a big man who rebounds and defends then a guard like Hughes who is injury prone and a bad fit with this roster.

Hornets: When the trade deadline passed, New Orleans was the best team in the Western Conference. They added Bonzi Wells, but they could have made a move to get Wally Szczerbiak, Kurt Thomas or some other form of offense or size to make themselves a more formidable playoff contender. Let's just hope the Hornets have enough in place with Chris Paul, David West, Peja Stojakovic and Tyson Chandler to get through the Western Conference and make a run for a championship. Otherwise it was a nice regular season but it was all for nothing.

Category: NBA
Tags: NBA
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