Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Week 9: Bye Week Previews and Some Magic Number

I decided that I would write a second post this week simply because I am bored in my class.  First I will look at bye weeks and then I’ll go into some magic numbers for playoff spots and division winners.  This week begins bye week hell.  Before this week, only 2 teams were ever on a bye.  This week, 6 teams are on a bye.  That will happen next week as well.  Week 11 only 4 teams will be a on a bye, week 12 only 2 teams will be on a bye, and then there will be no more byes.  So now we see how well each owner can manage, and how well waiver pickups have gone.

Starting with mine and Rob’s game, we will both be missing our QB’s.  We will also be missing top WR’s, though I haven’t played Megatron once since acquiring him.  Rob’s recent waiver acquisition Bryce Brown is also out, as is his defense.  Both of those two are easily replaceable because he hasn’t been depending on them all year.  I believe the bye hurts Rob more than me because Stafford has played better than Ryan the last couple of weeks, and because I’ve been playing without Megatron, so his being out isn’t any different for me.

Next up according to the order of the game center layout are Matt and Geoff.  I thought it was the battle for last, but even if Matt wins, Geoff likely stays ahead based on points.  Anyway, on to the bye weeks.  Matt gets Kaepernick back, but loses Lacy, Marshall, as well as Wright, Adams and Sankey.  Those last three aren’t big other than they could be used as bye week subs.  It will be interesting to see how he manages his team this week.  Geoff will be missing Cutler (who he hasn’t needed as of late anyway) and Golden Tate who has been solid with Megatron’s absence.  There is a small chance of Gio missing due to injury, but that’s not the point of this writing, so bye week advantage Geoff.  Geoff is deep enough to cover Tate being out and could cover Gio being hurt.

The strive for 5 – Konner vs. Trevor.  This is a great time to face Konner.  High school football playoffs are starting soon, and I doubt Konner cares much about fantasy during this stretch, but who knows.  Konner has a real rough bye week scenario.  He loses Forte, Cobb, Bennett, and his kicker (least big deal). Trevor is only down Jordy and his kicker.  Advantage Trevor.

Ren and Jordan have another game, and even before the bye information I was picking Ren to win, but now I’m thinking blowout.  Jordan will be missing Rodgers, White and Steven Jackson, but he should get Green back from injury.  Jordan will miss one of his two guys that can win a game for your single handedly, and the other one is tied to Ren’s QB.  Ren will be missing Julio Jones who has barely cracked 30 points with his last 3 games combined – so not the biggest loss with the way he has been playing.  The other problem for Jordan is that this is Peyton Manning vs Tom Brady week, and I expect Manning to go bonkers.  But I think Demaryius will get a paid vacation to Revis Island and not do much to help the Broncos or Jordan, so that won’t even help him.  Anyway, advantage Ren.

Brady and Tyler have the smallest amount of bye week impact, as Tyler has no one on bye, and Brady only has two guys, Walker, and Fred Jackson, who has been injured anyway.  I think this is the one game where the guy with the bye week advantage doesn’t win. Bye advantage Tyler, but win for Brady.

Kyle and Chad round out the week, with Chad looking like the bye week winner, he is missing Jacquizz Rodgers, who hasn’t been starting for Chad that I’ve noticed.  He will be missing Watkins though, who has been huge as of late.  Speaking of which, Chad didn’t listen to me when I tried to swindle Watkins away.  I’m still mad about that.  Kyle on the other will be missing about half of his running backs.  He currently can start a recently injured Rashad Jennings, who likely won’t play in real life.  Knile Davis is a backup to Charles, which isn’t promising, and Benny Cunningham is in an RBBC situation at best, though he did have three straight weeks at double digits before last week.  Chad probably loses the single best player this matchup, but Kyle has some serious depth issues.  Advantage Chad

So now that the bye weeks have been looked at, time for some magic numbers.  I think I first heard about the magic number from MLB, though it could have been NBA.  Basically the magic number comes from number of the top team’s wins and bottom team’s losses.  For example, Geoff and Brady’s magic number last week was 1, and as soon as I won or they lost, they couldn’t win the division.  So the magic number for me to clinch the division/for Chat to not win the division is 3.  I have a 3 game lead with 5 games left.  If I win 3 more games, I win the division, or if Chad loses 3 I win the division, or a combination of 2 wins for me, 1 loss for chad or 2 losses for Chad or 1 win for me.  So now that we have that established, I will go ahead and apply this to the non-leaders of the South division in comparison to the division leader, and the West is way too tight for me to attempt.  I will attempt todo wild card numbers (6 seed) as well.

South Magic Numbers: Bhers magic number is 1.  As soon as he loses, or Ren wins, he can no longer win the division. Rob’s magic number is 2.  So both Rob and Matt could be shut out after this week from the division championship.  Trevor’s magic number is 3.

Wildcard Numbers:  Currently Chad is number 4, even though he is ahead of the whole West Division.  Someone from the West has to make the playoffs.  However, because they are all tied, I will put them all into the wildcard consideration.  With 5 weeks to go, no one is eliminated from the playoff hunt.  And after sitting here thinking about it, this is way too much to try and figure out, and it’s way too close.  Considering the 5 and 6 seeds are at 4-4 and the 10, 11, and 12 spots are only 2 games behind, it’s a little hard to figure it out.  Maybe in the next couple of weeks I’ll be able to do it.  Anyway, that’s it for this week.

Weekly Record: 3-1 (another lucky week, barely beating Matt and getting some luck against Tommy)

Year to Date: 23-9

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Week 8: A Day Early Look at the League

So I am taking a break from my take home midterm to bring you all a bonus fantasy football coverage.  And by bonus, I mean a day early – I doubt I do one tomorrow.  So 5 of the 6 games are basically decided.  I will apologize to Chad if I somehow jinx his game, but I don’t think Tyler’s DST will score 33 points to beat Chad.  I mean I think he only pulls that crap out against Chad during the championship game once we have all given Chad the win.  Anyway, moving on to what happened this week, and what it could all mean. 

Geoff and Brady finally get their 2nd wins, and they do it by being the two highest scorers this week.  Also, both go to the U, who beat USC last night, so they are riding a good football wave.  You know who else went to the U? Tyler.  You know who loves USC? Chad?  Yup, Tyler is coming back and getting that win over Chad (This is a small attempt at a Bill Simmons reverse jinx strategy, because I wan the playoff race to be close).  So if I beat Matt, Geoff and Brady jump 1 spot each.  If I lose, they stay in the bottom two spots.  Right now I’m projected to win by 4, which basically means nothing.  If each players gets their average, I will win by about 5.  So i don't know what to think.  If Matt wins, he would likely pass Kyle, and he would need to go crazy on the scoring to pass Rob.  If I win, Matt drops to last, Brady and Geoff jump up a spot, and they would be a game behind Kyle and Rob, but would be ahead of them based on points.

The next 4 are Tyler (assuming he loses), Trevor, Jordan, and Konner, unless Jordan’s kicker scores something like 33 points. Those are all of those in the 4-4 group.  Chad would be at 5-3, Ren would be at 7-1, and I would be at 8-0.  That would mean next week we would have some interesting matchups. 

In week 9 we would see the battle for last place between Geoff and Matt as they go head to head. Konner would take on Trevor to see who would get to win number 5.  Chad will play Kyle, which would be a big game for Brady and Geoff (if Kyle loses), as would me versus Rob (if Rob loses).  If Kyle and Rob lose next week, and Brady and Geoff both win, that would put them to 8th and 9th, and would be a game behind the loser of Konner and Trevor, a game behind Tyler (assuming he loses this week, and on the condition Brady beats him next week) and a game behind Jordan (because Jordan plays Ren, and the only way you seem to be able to beat Ren is if Peyton is on a bye).

In week 10 (last week before we go back to division games) Geoff will play Jordan, which if Geoff won could pull him even with Jordan, Rob will play Brady, and Brady would pull even with Jordan if he beats Rob.  Ren will likely beat Tyler, so that would put Tyler on the same level as the Jordan, Geoff, and Brady, and that would be a crazy battle for at least the 6th seed, if not the 5th depending on what happens with Trevor and Konner the next two weeks.  The point of all this is that the next two weeks could be crazy…but you never know with fantasy.

I loved that my game was done last week before Sunday Night Football even happened.  I suppose the karma is coming back around and Matt and I each have two players going tomorrow night.  Looking at this from a not that educated, but still knowing enough about football perspective, the Cowboys will likely have a lead (good for Murray, bad for Bryant) and want to kill the clock, and the Redskins will need to throw (good for Garcon and Reed) to stay in the game, which could be good for the Cowboys DST to force some turnovers with points (which would get Tyler his miraculous win).  It’s more entertaining over the next two weeks if Tyler and Matt lose this week, so I think we should all be cheering for that.

Anyway, there is my early/bonus coverage of the week.  I will now be going back to my midterm.  Also, I am ashamed of my actions in my Western Woods league.  I left a guy in who was ruled out this morning.  I’m not sure I’ve ever done that before.  It felt horrible, and dirty.  I wouldn’t likely win either way looking at it now, but still.  I hate that it happened.  Also, I could go 1-3 this week if I don’t beat Matt, or get some luck against Tommy in another league.  Not a good week for me.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Week 7: Luck is in the Eye of the Fantasy Team Owner

The fantasy football luck Gods giveth, and the fantasy football luck Gods taketh away.  Tyler lost last week by 0.74 and will win this week by 0.86.  You never know how things will bounce.  Speaking of bad luck, Chad pointed out to me that through 6 weeks, Ren is the leading scorer and that the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th leading scorers were all in the North division.  Yet two of them only had 1 win each.  That’s some bad luck, as is being 2nd and 3rd in total points allowed, which they are.  More back luck, Brady is going to lose by .52 because Foster caught the touchdown.  Had he rushed it in, Brady would have won by 0.48.  Also, in my feeling bad for Brady, his last 4 games he has lost by a combined 14.19 points.  This week alone 4 of the 6 games had a bigger margin than that.

Enough about others, more about me. Even though I traded away Bell right before his best week of the year, I still managed to win.  I was simply hoping to win 1 of the next 3, so now I’m playing with house money – that doesn't mean I don’t want to win the next two though.  Also, Ren just pulled victory from out of nowhere, and I still only have a one game lead over him.  I thought I was going to have a two game lead over him.  Suck.  Shane Vereen was my surprise scorer which was nice, and Matt Ryan has been under performing for some time.  Ugh.

In other games, Chad won (meaning I still only have a 3 game lead in division) over Trevor in what was the game of the week because they were the #3 and #4 teams.  Chad’s win will put him into third place.  Konner won and will also jump Trevor because of the points tie breaker. So Trevor drops down to 5th.  Fortunately for him, Rob lost, so he doesn't lose any ground to Rob.  Tyler did win, and so Rob will drop in the overall standings below Tyler.  Jordan will move up over Kyle, and the bottom 3 will stay the same.

So the standings look something like this:
Skyler 7-0
Ren 6-1
Chad 4-3
Konner 4-3
Trevor 4-3
Tyler 4-3
Jordan 3-4
Rob 3-4
Kyle 3-4
Matt 2-5
Brady 1-5
Geoff 1-5
So the big games next week will be Chad and Tyler, Brady and Kyle, Rob and Geoff, and Trevor and Jordan.  They either have the same record or are one game apart. If Jordan loses, Rob loses, and Kyle loses, Brady and Geoff wouldn't move too far up (they would jump Matt), but they would be only one game behind the 7-9 spots, and could make a move to pass them and target the last wild card spot.

I won’t go into projections right now, I’ll just mention key bye week players for those games.  For Geoff and Rob, the only serious bye or injuries are Andre Williams on bye and Montee Ball who is likely out, leaving Rob a little thin at RB.  Chad and Tyler: The 49ers are out meaning Chad loses Gore and Davis (not that he has played Davis much) and Tyler will lose the 49ers DST. Brady and Kyle:  Only Fred Jackson looks to be out, so this should be a regular game. Jordan and Trevor:  Trevor will be without Crabtree and Donnell, and Jordan will miss Boldin, but Green should be back that week.

That’s all for this week.  We should see a more interesting playoff landscape the next two or three weeks if any of the middle or lower teams can put together a win streak.  Good luck to everyone but Matt next week.

Weekly Record: 3-1 (I’m simply waiting for the 1-3 or 0-4 week, you will hear/read my gripe about it when I do)

Year to Date: 20-8

Monday, October 13, 2014

Week 6: The Luck of the Scottish

I’ll just go ahead and say it.  I got super lucky to win this week.  But before I get to that, I am sad for Victor Cruz.  Sure, it’s because it changes my fantasy team, but he seems like a good guy and it was a non-contact injury – which is basically just a freak accident. Onto the positive.  DeMarco Murray is a beast.  I picked him up the same year I picked up Cruz and have had them as keepers since.  Murray is making the most of his last year, whereas Cruz is done for the year. 

Anyway, back to my lucky week.  I ended up beating Tyler by 0.74.  He had texted me to complain about Murray’s garbage time touchdown, and I told him that St. Louis could get the ball back and then throw a pick 6 to give Tyler the lead.  So of course that is what happened.  I got a text from Matt saying that sucks, same with Kyle, and then I called Tyler to tell curse him out for beating me because I jinxed myself.  As I was on the phone with Tyler, the Rams got the ball back, and got enough yards to drop Tyler 3 points, and give me the narrow margin of victory, and then Kyle and Matt texted me to say something to the effect of “lucky”.  I’m not sure what I did to get so lucky, but I am grateful for it.  It capped off what was probably the best possible week for me in this league.

My goal this season is to get the first round bye.  I may be in first place, but I believe Ren has the better team.  Sure his last couple of victories have been narrow, but his team scares me the most of anyone in the league.  So the goal is take 2nd and get the first round bye.  I’m banking on Ren winning his division, so I don’t have to worry about anyone else from the South getting the bye.  My biggest concerns are Chad, because he is in my division, and then most of the west because they are all tied except for Jordan, and I have no idea how that division will go.

So it's always good for me to win, but it was also good that Tyler lost, because it keeps him 3 games behind me – same with Kyle and Konner.  Now those three are tied in their division, and I have an ok lead on them.  I kind of wanted Jordan to win because it would put all of that crazy division tied, and would keep Rob down (another team that is a little scary), but it wasn’t a huge deal that Rob won.  Trevor is starting to worry me a little bit (should be 3rd place because of his record), so it would have been nice for him to lose…stupid Crabtree.  And in the game of the week (Chad and Ren) I wasn’t sure who I wanted to win. 

If Chad won, my division lead would stay at 2 games, but my league lead would have been at 2 games because Ren lost.  If Ren won, I would only be one game ahead of him, which is basically not a lead at all in my book, but I would have a lead in my division by 3 games.  I finally decided to cheer for Chad because it would boost my division, as well as give me a small chance at finishing with the #1 seed and not the #2 seed – so of course Ren won.  Because my goal is a first round bye, this still doesn’t really hurt me too much.  I’m just lucky I got this win.  Not only because I won by so little, but because I could have only beat 3 teams this week, and I was lucky enough to play one of them.

So here is a rough breakdown of division and then overall, and then wildcard spots. – this will likely be up on the league site by the time you read this, so feel free to ignore it, or correct any errors I make.

Skyler – 0 games behind
Chad – 3 GB
Brady – 5 GB
Geoff – 5 GB
Brady was 4th overall in points before this week, but Geoff is sitting slightly prettier in my book because Brady still has to play Ren, and Geoff already got that out of the way.  They could still go on a run and make the playoffs and even win the division, but it’s not likely.

Ren – 0 GB
Trevor – 1 GB
Rob – 2 GB
BHers – 3 GB
It’s narrow enough that it only takes 2-3 weeks to mix up the order – though I don’t think anyone overtakes Ren.  Trevor has played tough, and Rob’s team seems to be getting out of its funk.

Konner – 0 GB
Kyle – 0 GB
Tyler – 0 GB
Jordan – 1 GB
As you can see this division will probably be the closest all year.  Only about 6 points separate Kyle and Tyler, and Jordan has more points than both of them, but is behind a win.  Jordan should only be about 6 points behind Konner once the records get updated, and Konner has a 50ish point lead on Kyle.  So if Jordan can catch up in wins, it should jump him near the top of the division.

Skyler – 0 GB (North Leader)
Ren – 1 GB (South Leader)
Trevor – 2 GB
Chad – 3 GB
Konner – 3 GB (West Leader)
Rob – 3 GB
Kyle – 3 GB (and about 30 points out of the playoffs right now for the wild card spot, 50 for division spot)
Tyler – 3 GB
Jordan – 4 GB
Matt – 4 GB
Brady – 5 GB
Geoff – 5 GB

Wild Card (Division leaders are not in this list, and GB will be shown as #/# GB. The first number is based on taking the 4 seed, which is the highest a wildcard can get, even if he is higher than the other 2 division winners. The second number is based on taking the 6 seed):
Trevor (4 seed) – 0/0 GB
Chad (5 seed) – 1/0 GB
Rob (6 seed) – 1/0 GB
Kyle – 1/0 GB
Tyler – 1/0 GB
Jordan – 2/1 GB
Matt – 2/1 GB
Brady – 3/2 GB
Geoff – 3/2 GB

So as you can see, the battle for the 6 seed is still very much alive.  Chances are none of this matters in 4 to 5 weeks when we go back to division games, but it’s still interesting to see where you need to go.  Anyway, that’s all for this week.  Bad luck to Kyle next week.

Weekly Record: 2-2 (1 point away from 1-3)
Year to Date: 17-7

Monday, October 6, 2014

Week 5: The week that could have been

Oh what a week what a week.  If the Seahawks defense wasn't terrrible very bad from a fantasy perspective (the Bengals DST was terrible, just ask Brady) I could have had a 2 game lead on everyone in the league.  If Lynch and Wilson hadn't gone nuts tonight, I would have had a 3 game lead in division, which would have been a nice cushion.  But alas, I am not to run away with it in the regular season -- just like BYU.  I'm sure my time will come, but hopefully I at least get a first round bye.  Anyway, a quick recap of the games.

The game of the week featured Trevor and me -- 2 reasons why it was the game of the week, 1) I write this, so I pick, and 2) the #1 and #3 team played each other.  I won, but there was some luck involved.  I was only the number 5 scorer, but Trevor was number 11.  Much less painful scenario than Jordan (#3 scorer) who lost to Chad (#1) or Geoff (#4) who lost to Ren (#2).  Geoff and Ren had the closest game of the week, barely beating KoKo and Brady by about .36 in difference.

Geoff almost had the upset of the week, but instead that went to Rob for thrashing Tyler.  Tyler was ranked 4th, and Rob was ranked 10th.  The comeback game of the week went to Chad, who waited until the 4th quarter to take the lead against Jordan.  I said Chad waited because I like to believe we all have some sort of control over our fantasy teams and that it's not all luck.  The what the heck game went to Brady and Konner.  I get that there can be negative points from players, but a defense ending with negative 7 is just cruel.  Maybe we should reconsider defensive scoring rules in the offseason.  I mean, for a QB to get negative 7, he would have to 1 point from rushing/throwing and negative 8 from turnovers.  As much as Tony Romo probably hopes to do that (especially in the 4th quarter), I don't think even he is capable of that kind of output.  Anyway, if Brady started no DST, he would have won.  Had Brady the win locked up before starting his DST, I would have been ok with him sitting the Bengals to be safe, but because Konner had a kicker going that night, it makes sense.

**Official Ruling:  If you are beating your opponent, his 9 players have finished, you only have your DST left, and you are winning by 8 points or less, you can sit your DST and you will hear no complaints from me.  DST's can get no less than negative 8, so that's why I said 8 points or less.**

It's too late to figure out the middle of the standings after 2 because so much of it comes down to points, and it's late and I need sleep.  So a quick view to next week...and I have no idea what will be important matchups because I don't know the standings.  I will edit this tomorrow morning and give some thoughts.

Bragging time

Weekly Record: 3-1  (some serious luck in 2 leagues)
Year to Date: 15-5 (I'm waiting for a serious meltdown and regression)