By now, every fantasy football owner has invariably settled into three different categories.
- Cruising into the playoffs.
- Fighting tooth and nail to sneak into one of the final playoff spots.
- So far behind that they’re considering blowing up their team in a bitter attempt to destroy the fairness and balance of the league.
I fit into that final category. My team is pathetic. They’ve underperformed and are managed by a brain-dead moron who wouldn’t know how to set a decent line-up if his (my) life depended on it. Unfortunately my work life frequently depends on it (I mean seriously, I write for a football blog), and I’m constantly being harassed by my colleagues who kick the crap out of me every week.
I’m not the only one who’s had a disastrous fantasy season. Here’s a list of players who have woefully underperformed based on their average draft position (all numbers are taken from ESPN fantasy).
1. Michael Vick- ADP at QB: 7
Vick has had a tough time staying on his feet this season (he’s been sacked 27 times, third highest in the league), and has almost as many interceptions as he does touchdowns. There’s no way he’s a top ten fantasy quarterback this season.
ESPN fantasy points: 123
Cheap Alternative: Andy Dalton- ADP at QB: 19, ESPN fantasy points: 122
2. Matthew Stafford- ADP at QB: 4
It’s been a feast or famine kind of year for Stafford. His TD to INT ratio is an incredibly average 8:7 and his Lions have struggled to a 4-4 record, good for last place in the NFC North.
ESPN fantasy points: 137
Cheap alternative: Carson Palmer- ADP at QB: 23, ESPN fantasy points: 133
3.Tony Romo- ADP at QB: 10
Despite Jon Gruden’s ridiculously over-the-top praise (I’m relatively certain Gruden voted for Romo during last night’s presidential election); Tony Romo has been the definition of sub-mediocrity. He seemingly kills every game-changing drive with a crippling interception and the Cowboys are off to a pathetic 3-5 start. There aren’t enough “Jerry Wipes” on the planet to mop up the tears of fantasy owners who wasted a decent pick on Romo.
ESPN fantasy points: 111
Cheap Alternative: Josh Freeman- ADP at QB: 18, ESPN fantasy points: 133
1. Chris Johnson- ADP at RB: 4
This choice was kind of difficult. Early on, Johnson looked like the worst first round pick in fantasy football history, with three consecutive weeks with under 30 yards rushing. He’s slowly starting to turn it around with three 140 yard plus games (including a 195 yard 2 TD game against the Steelers). Still, his incredible level of inconsistency isn’t worth a top-ten pick.
ESPN fantasy points: 91
Cheap Alternative: Stevan Ridley- ADP at RB: 22, ESPN fantasy points: 100
2. DeMarco Murray- ADP at RB: 9
After a strong week one (131 yards rushing), Murray’s season has been destroyed by a nagging foot injury. His fall from prominence has been particularly devastating for me, as he was supposed anchor my backfield (I suppose it’s been devastating for the Cowboys too).
ESPN fantasy points: 46
Cheap Alternative: (everyone’s flavour of the month) Doug Martin- ADP at RB: 25, ESPN fantasy points: 145 (!!!)
3.Darren McFadden- ADP at RB: 10
Run DMC’s relatively disappointing season took yet another negative turn after he suffered a high ankle sprain during the Raiders 42-32 loss to the Bucs last Sunday. I wouldn’t be surprised if McFadden misses a couple of games.
ESPN fantasy points: 68
Cheap Alternative: Alfred Morris- ADP at RB: 36, ESPN fantasy points: 105
1. Calvin Johnson- ADP at WR: 1
Fantasy owners most likely used a first round pick to take Megatron, and he’s rewarded them with one touchdown reception so far this season. That’s right, you read that correctly…ONE TOUCHDOWN RECEPTION.
ESPN fantasy points: 79
Cheap Alternative: Eric Decker- ADP at WR: 28, ESPN fantasy points: 96
2. Andre Johnson- ADP at WR: 2
Johnson has seriously underachieved this season (he may be showing his age), and only has two games with more than 100 yards receiving. During Johnson’s struggles, TE Owen Daniels has become Matt Schaub’s favourite end-zone target.
ESPN fantasy points: 64
Cheap Alternative: Reggie Wayne- ADP at WR: 31, ESPN fantasy points: 96
3. Larry Fitzgerald- ADP at WR: 3
Fitzgerald’s unspectacular season isn’t entirely his fault. I mean, he really doesn’t have anyone to consistently get him the football (he only has one game with more than 100 yards receiving). His production has also been seriously hindered by the emergence of Andre Roberts as a legitimate threat at WR.
ESPN fantasy points: 79
Cheap Alternative: Vincent Jackson- ADP at WR: 19, ESPN fantasy points: 103
Of course, this post was mostly an exercise in futility. We can’t go back in time and re-draft our teams in the hopes that we create an unstoppable fantasy football juggernaut. Well, I guess we could, but we’d need a DeLorean, a flux capacitor, and a shit-load of plutonium.