Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Creeper Report: Fantasy Football Week 4

It took until Week 3. The Creepers Fantasy Football Franchise suffered its first loss. Last week's Wonder Twins, LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles, took the form of humans, combining for 72 yards and a fumble. I felt Danny Woodhead would be a good play until about 10:05. (Get well soon, Danny.) Randal Cobb's 29 yards plus Shane Graham's 2 extra points plus whatever Baltimore was calling defense equals a bad Creeper day. A 25 point loss to "da Expected Champions".

In other Creeper news, the other squads went undefeated in Week 3. I have two 3-0 teams, one at 2-0-1 and one at 2-1. The Creepers are staying the course.

Stay active finding depth at RB and WR. Keep streaming the best defensive matchup this week. Trust the experts and don't overthink anything.

Anyone see the Seahawks/Broncos game?

Ten thoughts for Week 4 about football, real or otherwise, and other gibberish:

#1 An Instant Classic

Russell Wilson versus Peyton Manning will be a rivalry on the level of Manning/Brady for as long as Peyton stays in the game. Grant us a February rematch, somebody.

A friend argued that this win, with Seattle recovering from Manning's final-minute strike and pulling together on the winning overtime drive, indicates the team is a step above the one that blew out the Broncos in the Super Bowl.

I concur. That game-winning drive builds a well of confidence the team can always drink from.

Remember that time Peyton Manning came out of nowhere to force overtime and we drove the ball right down their horse-throats? Let's do it again.

Russell had it all. Timely scrambles for first downs. Crisp passing off play action. And Beast Mode was in full growl.

I haven't felt this good since the Super Bowl. Now Seahawks and Broncos fans must suffer through a bye week.

#2 Bye Week Adjustments

I don't like the early bye week. I liked the Week 12 bye from last year better. Get the rest as close to the post-season as possible. Yet it isn't up to me so I'd better like it.

Arizona, Cleveland, St. Louis and Cincinnati also have the week off. So if you have players on those six teams, do you keep them or dump them?

I have Russell three times and Peyton once on my four teams. Yeah, they stay. Percy and Demaryius too.

Larry Fitzgerald is almost on my fence. Michael Floyd is looking like the Cardinals' #1 instead.

Cleveland will have Ben Tate healthy again, putting Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell back in the three-man platoon. I don't think anyone gets enough production to save.

Sure, Giovani Bernard is sticking around and AJ too. Jeremy Hill I'd hang on to. The Bengals' team is looking very real and they could support two backs. Marvin Jones will be healthy by Week 5, putting him and Mohamed Sanu in an iffy situation. It depends on your other receivers and the size of your bench.

Zach Stacy I'm keeping based on the fact that he's the most stable offensive piece on the team. Other Rams? I don't think so.

#3 I Told You the 49ers Would Suck

No need to point out the things I've said that are wrong. I was right when I said the Seahawks looked more stable than the 49ers. The team leads the league in penalties with 36 and has been out-scored 52-3 in second halves this year.

Jim Harbaugh spent the off-season wrestling for a contract extension the team wouldn't give him. Good luck with that this year.

And just like the NFL Championship Game, give Colin Kaepernick a chance to make plays and win the game, he'll get stripped or throw picks.

#4 Defenses I Like

My method for picking defenses is simple: note who the high scoring defenses played last week and see who's playing those victims this week.

Week 3 victims: Buccaneers, Jaguars, Jets, Packers.

Week 4 versus victims, in order: Steelers, Chargers, Lions, Bears.

I now have Pittsburgh versus Tampa Bay in all four leagues.

Detroit put on a surprising show last week against Green Bay. They should look even better against NYJ.

I don't think Aaron Rodgers and his crew get shut down again, so don't get excited about Chicago's D.

#5 Why I Don't Watch the News

You don't read me getting into politics or much outside my bubble of family, football, restaurants and writing. I don't care. I don't pay attention.

Most of all, I don't think I get the information straight.

Information is mostly delivered by one of a few sources competing against one another. Each one wants to gain the most attention when it shouts from the top of its roof. That's why no one makes money from good news. People tune in for the shocking, tragic and evil.

Furthermore I think government feeds the media the story as it wants it told. Do I know what's really happening in the Middle East? No. Neither do you. You know what you're told. That's it.

I don't know what's really going on in North Korea. Neither do you.

I don't know the true story of 9-11. Neither do you.

If you are on the ground in one of the world's hotspots and are close to those making the news, you know a pebble of the truth. I hope you get it out without getting shot and I hope someone believes you.

So I don't get excited over information I can't vet or filter. I don't sweat politics because they affect me, but I don't affect them. Fortunately, most of the crazy ideas politicians have never come to fruition. Thank you, checks and balances.

But my point eventually is, I should stop worrying about NFL news. I'll watch games and read statistics. Game recaps can't be spin-doctored too much. But what some source claims to know about what some guy did? Blah-bitty-blah.

What did Roger Goodell know and when did he know it? Did Steve Bisciotti try to cover up the Ray Rice thing or is Ray's camp saying anything necessary to start the reinstatement discussion? I don't know and neither do you.

Starting to sound like a court drama. Let's watch some football played by people not on the exempt list.

#6 The Kirk Cousins Effect

Somebody writing for one of the NFL sites I used to write for was attempting a drama about the quarterback controversy suddenly aswirl in DC. Who should the Pigskins start when RG3 is healthy again?

This is why sportswriting makes me ill sometimes. Writers must generate noise even if it's over nothing. OK, dude. Let's look at this argument: RG3 won't be healthy for weeks at the soonest. At that point, Cousins will have either excelled or failed. Until then, we can't discuss much.

We can talk about the situation at hand. If healthy, Cousins will start for most of the fantasy season at least. He may not throw for 427 again, but he'll throw it and he has good weapons. He may play from behind a lot. Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson will stay firmly in the picture.

I made the mistake of thinking DeSean's shoulder would outweigh his hate for the Eagles and I benched him. Didn't cost me the game, at least. He should be even better this week against the Giants.

Niles Paul could end up as a great TE grab until and maybe even after Jordan Reed returns to health.

Cousins is my fill-in for Russell and Peyton in 3 leagues.

#7 I Sold a Joke for $5

Writer Access has provided me with a crazy and sporadic range of writing opportunities. Recently, a cartoonist was looking for jokes he could use as single-panel gags. I pitched a few and he picked one:

A drunk wobbles into a bar and stumbles over a chair. The bartender points to a sign that says: "If you can't say Unacceptably Intoxicated then you're Unacceptably Intoxicated."

The drunk shakes his head and replies: "I'm not ceptanuptably zintosicated. Gimme a garmarita."

He liked it so much in increased my pay by 125%. I'd like that percentage all day. I earned $5.76 rather than the proposed $2.80 something.

#8 Cigar Review from the Oscuro Corner

Get on the mailing list for as many cigar sites as you can because some days you get stupid deals. Cigars International was running a 2 Buck Chuck event and, among others, was selling 5 Vegas Series A Apotheosis 15 packs for $29.99.

Yes, please. My birthday is coming up.

Always and also always search for coupon codes when buying anything online. For CI, you'll find a 10 cigar sampler for $8 you can add to any purchase. Include a 5 count Herf-a-dor for another $5. I have one, but I added the 10 pack, which included singles from Rocky Patel, Nestor Miranda and (my new favorite cigar name) Jesus Fuego.

I just might start using that name in vain. Jesus Fuego! Will you just throw it to DeSean?

Back to the cigars. I purchased another 5 Vegas Series A before: the 4.5"x44 Anomaly. My only knock against it was that the narrow gauge made it taste too hot and peppery.

So when I got a chance to buy its 5.5"x55 big brother, I pounced.

It lacks the cedar sheath of the Anomaly, so the flavor is not so woodsy. It's a box-press, so the draw is firm and the burn is slow. It has the meaty, earthy, dark leathery flavors a good oscuro should have. The Anomaly hinted at these, but I tasted more of the peppery wrapper and less of the rich filler.

I like this smoke a lot. I like the whole line and still enjoy an Anomaly for those short-attention-span sessions. You need a little guy in the lineup. But the 5.5"x55 box press is a very nice vitola for this blend.

You can't get them for $2 anymore, but 10 packs are $60 or less. They're available in a range of sizes. I'd like to sink my lungs into a 6"x58 Apocalypse one day.

#9 Haiku for Sale

I just got involved with, a site specializing in $5 freelance jobs. It takes a lot of $5 jobs to make a living, but some people make five figures working for them. You can grow into larger paying jobs and build your reputation.

Look at the last post to see how I've become a word whore.

Asking myself what I could do for 5 bucks, I decided I could give a lucky buyer 17 syllables of 86 goodness.

But don't just dedicate one to your bonsai tree. Give one as a gift, or a joke, or a compliment, or a prank. Have fun with them. I do.

#10 But this Haiku's Free

Last year with the Penalty Flag, I included a weekly limerick. This year, I'm going haiku. Next year, if wealth gives me the time, I'll give you a five act Shakespearian comedy or tragedy every week.

Marshawn gazes down:
One yanked dread on the turf. Vows
Overtime vengeance.

Good luck and happy creepings.