Draft Analysis: Mystic Fantasy Foozeball

Tonight was the third annual Mystic Fantasy Foozeball draft (formerly known as the Pizza Place League). While the league’s manager list has changed drastically over the course of the years, the spirit of the league lives on through the teams of a few guys. Since the league began, the league settings were always a little different, such as having individual defensive players, multiple kickers, etc. As the commissioner of the league this year again, I decided to keep that idea and ended up having 2 QB’s, 2 DEF’s and 1 WR/RB. If you’re in more than 2 or 3 leagues (4 in my case), it helps to have variation in the drafts to keep you on your toes, so that was another reason for the non-standard positions. Anyways, without any more rambling, here is my personal analysis of the draft…

Positions: 2 QB, 3 WR, 2 RB, 1 RB/WR flex, 1 TE, 1 K, 2 DEF

1st Pick: The Rhymenocori

1. (1) LaDainian Tomlinson
2. (20) Steve Smith
3. (21) Carson Palmer
4. (40) Deuce McAllister
5. (41) Randy Moss
6. (60) Matt Hasselbeck
7. (61) Todd Heap
8. (80) Devery Henderson
9. (81) Pittsburgh
10. (100) Marion Barber III
11. (101) Seattle
12. (120) Jerious Norwood
13. (121) Trent Green
14. (140) Jerry Porter
15. (141) Robbie Gould
16. (160) Anthony Gonzalez
17. (161) Paris Warren

Analysis: I’d first like to say that this team is managed by a very whipped man…my roommate. We’ve had this draft scheduled for a few weeks now, not to mention that a bulk of the reason I started this league was so that he would have a league to participate in (I was already in 3). So, when draft day comes, he tells me that he’s getting home late from work, so he might miss the beginning of the draft. It turns out that he gets home in plenty of time, buttttt, now he has to eat dinner with his girlfriend and her parents, so now he’ll definitely miss his first few picks. I tell him that I’ll be a good friend and make picks for him so that Yahoo’s autodraft doesn’t screw him until he arrives. What happens next? The draft ends and he still isn’t home. I’ve just drafted his entire team. Now the only claim he can make to actual ownership of the team (which as of now he still hasn’t paid for), is that he’s making a few waiver claims to clean up a pick that I made out of anger for him (i.e. some guy named Paris Warren…I think he’s a 5th string WR for Tampa Bay or something). Anyways, now that my ranting is out of the way, here’s an honest analysis of the other team that I drafted this year (which will probably end up being one of the best teams in the league)…

Making this situation even worse is the fact that my roommate had first pick in the draft, so I had to start by drafting him LT, making his team an instant contender. After that pick, I had to wait for the draft-snake to make its way back (which isn’t so bad with only 10 teams). For his next picks, I took potentially the 2nd best QB in the league and THE best WR in league. I had been told to take a good QB with the first pick (unless LT was there) and my roommate is a Panthers fan, so that’s how I justified not taking another RB with either of those picks. Even so, he ended up with a good second running back in Deuce. He also ended up with a top 3 tight end, a top 3 Kicker, and a quality second QB. The only question I see for this team would be the wide receivers. If Moss has a big year, he should settle this issue, but Henderson starting at the 3 spot might be questionable, but I see him having a big year so he should be fine there.

Rank: 1/10

2nd Pick: Stop Sucking Eli

1. (2) Steven Jackson
2. (19) Brandon Jacobs
3. (22) Thomas Jones
4. (39) Roy Williams
5. (42) Javon Walker
6. (59) Braylon Edwards
7. (62) Tony Romo
8. (79) San Diego
9. (82) Eli Manning
10. (99) DeAngelo Williams
11. (102) Chris Cooley
12. (119) Matt Schaub
13. (122) Jerricho Cotchery
14. (139) Reuben Droughns
15. (142) Oakland
16. (159) Muhsin Muhammad
17. (162) Neil Rackers

Analysis: Second pick went to Dan-0, one of FFGeekBlog’s unofficial contributors. He’s a semi-Giants-homer, who as you can tell loves the progress Eli has made so far in his career. As with LT, it seems that the second pick is also a no-brainer and Dan scooped up Steven Jackson who should be a monster this season. With injury worries and the fact that this is a 2 QB league, his decision to take Thomas Jones with the third pick could be seen as questionable. He managed to make up for it however, drafting a pretty solid WR core with the following three picks, then getting 2 middle-of-the-road QB’s with two of his next three picks. DeAngelo Williams provides a good replacement for T. Jones if any questions should arise. As for the remainder of his picks, Cooley was a great pick at 102 (he was the 5th highest scoring TE last season), and hand-cuffing Brandon Jacobs with Reuben Droughns was a smart move as well. Overall, Dan definitely had a solid draft and I am not that excited to be playing him week 1.

Rank: 4/10

3rd Pick: Las Chupacabras

1. (3) Larry Johnson
2. (18) Travis Henry
3. (23) Tom Brady
4. (38) Anquan Boldin
5. (43) Lee Evans
6. (58) Terry Glenn
7. (63) Tony Gonzalez
8. (78) New England
9. (83) Chad Pennington
10. (98) Carolina
11. (103) Kevin Curtis
12. (118) LenDale White
13. (123) Donte’ Stallworth
14. (138) Byron Leftwich
15. (143) Tampa Bay
16. (158) Tony Scheffler
17. (163) David Akers

Analysis: One of the managers representing St. Maarten in the draft, The Chupacabras lucked out with the third overall pick. Even luckier, Larry Johnson just ended his holdout today! I hope this team is celebrating that fact for a while, because I don’t see the partying lasting too long into the regular season. After LJ, “Chupa” picked Travis Henry, who recently dinged himself up in a preseason game. If he limps into the regular season, this team could be limping as well with the 3rd back on the team being LenDale White (ugh). Anquan Boldin and Lee Evans should be good at the receiver position, but I would put a few question marks around Terry Glenn and Tony Gonzalez this year, considering their ages and potential QB issues (Romo might be a bust?). If Stallworth stays healthy, he might end up being a steal at the 123rd pick of the draft. There’s not much else I can say about this team, except that I have to wish him good luck, because he’s going to need it!

Rank: 10/10

4th Pick: MCS4Life

1. (4) Shaun Alexander
2. (17) Cedric Benson
3. (24) Edgerrin James
4. (37) Marc Bulger
5. (44) Donald Driver
6. (57) Calvin Johnson
7. (64) Matt Leinart
8. (77) Mark Clayton
9. (84) Vincent Jackson
10. (97) Jason Witten
11. (104) J.P. Losman
12. (117) Julius Jones
13. (124) Buffalo
14. (137) Santonio Holmes
15. (144) LaMont Jordan
16. (157) Michael Turner
17. (164) Josh Brown

Analysis: In what I would consider the hardest pick of the first round, 4th pick went to my boy Tweek from Messina, NY. He decided to go the Shaun Alexander route, instead of Frank Gore, which I think will be a smart move. In a league with a WR/RB flex position, his decision to take 3 RB’s off the bat might prove to be a great decision, especially if Edge can have a better year in Arizona this season. He proceeded to take my boy Bulger with his next pick, which I would normally question with Roy Williams, Anquan Boldin, Javon Walker and Lee Evans still out there, but it is a two QB league, so taking at least one top tier one early becomes a little more important. However, I still think that the WR position is one that he might be hurting at all season. His top three receivers are Driver (who I think is on the downside of his career), a rookie (albeit potentially the greatest rookie WR of all time), and Mark Clayton, who plays for the Ravens. He did scoop up Vincent Jackson, who is one of my sleeper picks of the year, but I still can’t see him getting consistent production out of that core and I think it might cost him a couple weeks unless he can make a trade here or there.

Rank: 6/10

5th Pick: The Hiphoppotamus

1. (5) Frank Gore
2. (16) Clinton Portis
3. (25) Marvin Harrison
4. (36) Marshawn Lynch
5. (45) Antonio Gates
6. (56) Santana Moss
7. (65) Joey Galloway
8. (76) Brett Favre
9. (85) Ben Roethlisberger
10. (96) Dallas
11. (105) Shayne Graham
12. (116) Green Bay
13. (125) Fred Taylor
14. (136) Ladell Betts
15. (145) Vernon Davis
16. (156) Vernand Morency
17. (165) DeShaun Foster

Analysis: Another representative from St. Maarten, and apparently a fan of Flight of the Conchords (along with my roommate), Snipe had the fifth pick of the draft and decided to go the Gore route. Gore should be alright, but taking Portis with the second pick could prove to be a bit risky. He may have realized this and decided to pick up Marshawn Lynch in the 4th round, but I don’t even think that is really solidifying the position all that much. For receivers, Harrison and Santana Moss should hold it down, with Gates making up for any drop-off that Galloway will provide at the position. The problem with this team is that besides Harrison and Gates, no one really stands out and makes you say…”This team is going to be nasty this year”. Favre is on the downside of his career and I don’t see Roethlisberger having that great of a season. At least he has Ladell Betts hand-cuffed to Portis, and Vernon Davis could be good trade bait to improve his team (as he’ll never start him with Gates on the squad). It’s unfortunate that St. Maarten had two of the weaker teams, but considering they don’t even play football there, I guess there’s a slight learning curve.

Rank: 8/10

6th Pick: Hooray Beer!

1. (6) Willie Parker
2. (15) Willis McGahee
3. (26) Chad Johnson
4. (35) Marques Colston
5. (46) Plaxico Burress
6. (55) Reggie Brown
7. (66) Jay Cutler
8. (75) Adrian Peterson
9. (86) Alex Smith
10. (95) L.J. Smith
11. (106) Jason Campbell
12. (115) Bernard Berrian
13. (126) New York
14. (135) Leon Washington
15. (146) Arizona
16. (155) Joey Harrington
17. (166) Olindo Mare

Analysis: In fantasy football, I generally consider myself to have two arch-nemisis’s, and this team’s manager is one of them, so you know how hard it made it to judge his team fairly. The problem was, I really like this team and the only week point I can point out is the fact that he has crap for defenses (and in a 2 defense league, that might end up being a bit of a problem). Getting Parker and McGahee for his top two running backs is solid, as is his quadrant of receivers. While Jay Cutler and Alex Smith might not be top tier quarterbacks at this point, I see them both as up and coming guys who’s team’s passing offenses should be improved this season. Adrian Peterson is an excellent sleeper pick in the the 8th round, as was Leon Washington in the 14th. The flex position should be no problem for this team all season long. Selections of Berrian and Harrington made me cringe a bit, but he can always drop them for some sleeper candidates early in the season and he doesn’t have to rely on them at all, so they don’t really affect his teams status as one of the tops in the league going into the season.

Rank: 2/10

7th Pick: Clit Commanders

1. (7) Peyton Manning
2. (14) Maurice Jones-Drew
3. (27) Torry Holt
4. (34) Vince Young
5. (47) Hines Ward
6. (54) Carnell Williams
7. (67) Chris Chambers
8. (74) Benjamin Watson
9. (87) Miami
10. (94) Nate Kaeding
11. (107) Warrick Dunn
12. (114) Minnesota
13. (127) Damon Huard
14. (134) Joe Horn
15. (147) Dallas Clark
16. (154) Chris Henry
17. (167) Stephen Gostkowski

Analysis: The Commanders, from Pawcatuck, CT, had the joy of the seventh pick overall. Due to the fact that he somehow won the league last season taking Peyton Manning with his first pick, he felt it necessary to do the same this year. The problem with that pick, was that his next few picks were filled with players I feel will have less than stellar, if not “bust” years, including Jones-Drew, Vince Young, Cadillac Williams and Chris Chambers. If he’s not hurt, Warrick Dunn could make up for drafting Cadillac so early, but otherwise he’s screwed at the RB position. While I see Ben Watson having a good year for the Pats, taking him in the 8th round (74th overall) was a bit of a stretch with Chris Cooley (11th round) and Kellen Winslow (10th round) still available. He is a Patriots fan however, so maybe he felt the need to have some representation on his team. Anyways, I can’t see this team seriously contending, but I probably said that last year about his team.

Rank: 9/10

8th Pick: HereToKickB’sAss

1. (8) Joseph Addai
2. (13) Ronnie Brown
3. (28) Terrell Owens
4. (33) T.J. Houshmandzadeh
5. (48) Ahman Green
6. (53) Darrell Jackson
7. (68) Alge Crumpler
8. (73) Jon Kitna
9. (88) Jake Delhomme
10. (93) Adam Vinatieri
11. (108) Jacksonville
12. (113) San Francisco
13. (128) Chester Taylor
14. (133) Tatum Bell
15. (148) D.J. Hackett
16. (153) Heath Miller
17. (168) Jason Elam

Analysis: Well, the good thing about this team is that while the manager says he’s here to “Kick my ass”, he wasn’t even motivated enough to show up for the draft and his team was autodrafted. The semi-amazing part though, is that his team ended up being halfway decent. I think Addai has the makings of being a monster this season, which should make up for the fact that his second RB is Ronnie Brown. His top two WR are touch down machines and Ahman Green should be a good flex position guy. D-Jack is a question mark in San Francisco this year and I’m not sure I could justify the pick over guys like Santana Moss, Reggie Brown, Calvin Johnson and Braylon Edwards who were still available. Kitna should do alright this year, but Delhomme is someone I would fear could lose his job this season(if only to give the world the chance to see if David Carr really sucks or if it really was just the Houston offensive line).

Rank: 5/10

9th Pick: WR15 Denver Broncos (Me)

1. (9) Rudi Johnson
2. (12) Laurence Maroney
3. (29) Larry Fitzgerald
4. (32) Reggie Wayne
5. (49) Andre Johnson
6. (52) Philip Rivers
7. (69) Chicago
8. (72) Baltimore
9. (89) Steve McNair
10. (92) Kellen Winslow
11. (109) Rex Grossman
12. (112) Greg Jennings
13. (129) Drew Bennett
14. (132) Brandon Marshall
15. (149) Kevin Jones
16. (152) Jeff Wilkins
17. (169) Randy McMichael

Analysis: Apparently this is my year to get late draft numbers. In all of my leagues except one, I have a draft pick of 9th or higher. With only 10 teams in this league however, it didn’t turn out to be all that bad of a pick. I was assured to get two quality running backs right off the bat and I feel pretty confident with my picks of Rudi and Maroney (who I think is going to have a great year once he shakes off the cob webs from his surgery). I followed up those two picks with 3 very solid receivers, so at this point I was feeling pretty good. It was then that I remembered that this was a 2 QB league and looked at the list and realized that I might have waited a pick or two too long…as my top QB is Philip Rivers. I figured at that point, I’d have to give up on the whole QB angle and decided to switch it up. The Defense run hadn’t begun yet and I waited patiently, hoping that I could spring a fast one on everyone. To my surprise, no one picked one and I was able to scoop up both Baltimore and Chicago (remember it’s a 2 defense league).

Beyond those picks, I feel good about my Drew Bennett, Greg Jennings, Randy McMichael and of course my boy Brandon Marshall picks. One regret I have is that I didn’t take a 3rd or even 4th solid running back when I had the chance. Because there is a RB/WR flex position, I’m now stuck with inserting the “walking injury” Kevin Jones into that flex position, or using one of my receivers…not to mention that KJ is my current bye-week sub for the RB position, which is terrifying. I’ll be hitting up the waiver wire shortly I have to believe, but we’ll see.

Overall, the 2 QB/2 DEF format caught me off guard slightly, as was expected (and I’m pretty sure it also threw everyone else off), but I still think I drafted a solid and competitive team, so look out!

Rank: 3/10

10th Pick: AARP Pro

1. (10) Brian Westbrook
2. (11) Reggie Bush
3. (30) Donovan McNabb
4. (31) Drew Brees
5. (50) Deion Branch
6. (51) Laveranues Coles
7. (70) Jeremy Shockey
8. (71) Jamal Lewis
9. (90) Philadelphia
10. (91) Denver
11. (110) Matt Jones
12. (111) Jeff Garcia
13. (130) Brandon Jackson
14. (131) Eddie Kennison
15. (150) Mike Bell
16. (151) Brandon Jones
17. (170) Jason Hanson

Analysis: Our resident senior citizen, AARP Pro is managed by my arch-nemisis’s father, who I assume is managing a fantasy team for the first time in his life. If this was a PPR (Points-Per-Reception) league, this team would have had a great start with Westbrook and Buch…but sadly (note sarcasm) it’s not. They’ll still form a solid pair of running backs, but probably not as much as he was expecting. Brees and McNabb are probably the most formidable quarterback pair in the league, which will be necessary to make up for the complete lack of depth at the wide receiver position. I have to say, the group of Deion Branch, Laveranues Coles and Matt Jones is a scary squad to roll out there each week. Brandon Jackson could be a nice sleeper pick 130, as might Brandon Jones (do I sense something going on with Brandon’s in the NFL?), but this team should probably trade one of it’s QB’s to try to shore up the WR position or they could see themselves at the bottom of the standings

Rank: 7/10

Overall, the draft was pretty interesting…it’s always good to switch it up and have something like 2 QB’s or 2 defenses in a league or two. Our draft proved a couple things as well. First, you generally draft better if you live in the country where the sport is played. Second, autodrafting is garbage…you should have to personally pick your losing team, instead of having the computer do it for you and taking all the blame in the end. And third, taking Peyton Manning as your first pick is not recommended (although apparently it can still help your team win the championship). I hope you enjoyed this analysis of my Mystic Fantasy Foozeball draft…we have 2 more drafts coming up this week so stay tuned for the analysis of those in the next few days. Until then…Adios!