If you are in the market for such knowledge, the Arizona Diamondbacks have a magic number of 25 in the NL West. I’m just putting that out, letting it get some air, there’s certainly not a conclusion coming. There are questions, though. Like, exactly how putrid are the San Francisco Giants right now? They’ve won 11 of their last 30. During that torrid stretch, they’ve scored 2.7 runs per game (and were shutout 5 times), which brought their season average to 3.39. A decent ERA, and not much else. They’ve scored the fewest runs in baseball, have the sixth worst run differential in the National League and are losing ground rapidly to the Diamondbacks, a team who won 7 in a row, lost six in a row and now has won six straight. They’ve opened up a four game lead in the West, and the Giants are also 8.5 games out of touch in the wild-card race.
So, still worried about playing the Giants? San Francisco is not looking real destiny-ish right now. Things have changed since 2010. Most notably, there’s no Buster Posey or waiver wire infusions of life this time around. The starting pitching looks a tad less sharp, and Brian Wilson isn’t 100%. I wonder if Phillies fans aren’t rooting against a team that would turn out to be very beatable. I understand the issues of facing the Giants in a five game series, but I don’t think we should overlook the tailspin. The Giants do little right these days, and I know there is a month left in the season, but I’m starting to wonder if Arizona wouldn’t be a tougher match-up. Some youthful exuberance?
I have a feeling most people would disagree with the notion that Arizona is the tougher team, and I’m not really saying I believe that, just pointing out a few things about those terrifying Giants. No matter the end result, they stink right now, so enjoy it.
I’ve got a fantasy draft tonight. My one and only. I’m exclusive like that. So, I’ve been ignoring my advice of no mock drafts, because they are kind of entertaining for about 5 rounds (just like the actual draft) and it’s nice to get a sense of what’s out there, what the general consensus is on some players. Here’s some stuff I’ve gleaned…
People aren’t exactly sure what to do with Chris Johnson, and I don’t blame them. I don’t want any part of the Johnson window, which I’d say is picks 3 through 6. If you have 1 or 2, you can take AP, Foster, maybe Charles and feel pretty comfortable. Right around number four, though, things change. At that point, do you want Ray Rice? LeSean McCoy? You know these guys are guaranteed, feature backs, but they’re a little underwhelming, especially with 2,000 yard Chris Johnson sitting there. When’s he coming back? If you take Rice at #4 and he puts up 1,100 yards and 10 scores you’ll feel like a moron if Johnson breezes in next week, doesn’t miss a beat and scores 18 TDs. It’s a tough spot, so I’m hoping that I can either safely avoid Johnson, or he’s gone before I pick.
Another thing I’ve noticed is what appears to be a lack of depth at the skill positions. I can give everyone fair warning that in the mock drafts I’ve done, the WR talent gets gobbled up in a hurry. And, I don’t know if the league is just thin on wide receivers, but by round 5 or 6 you’re mostly looking at bye-week plug-in caliber talent. It’s pretty disturbing. Now, WR is also a position that will always have a hit or two on the waiver wire, but don’t be surprised if your WR corps looks a little thin after your draft. Product of the times.
And, with running backs, the disappearance of the feature back and the goal line vultures continues to create fantasy football nightmares. It’s almost as if the head coaches don’t realize the importance of fantasy football. How many top running backs would you be really comfortable taking? Two or three? Here’s the top-20 RBs from a random site. I’ll put the worry free guys, for their projected round in bold. Everyone else, I’ll list an issue.
- Arian Foster
- Adrian Peterson
- Jamaal Charles
- Chris Johnson–Not in camp, hasn’t practiced.
- Ray Rice
- LeSean McCoy–Ronnie Brown, Eagles Red Zone Offense
- Darren McFadden–Low TDs, Never Healthy for Full Season
- Mo-Jo Drew–Knee Held Together By Wishes
- Frank Gore–Banged up last year, Hates his Team
- Rashard Mendenhall
- Matt Forte–Bears Offense
- Steven Jackson–8 million career carries.
- Peyton Hillis–He’s white.
- Michael Turner–29 years old
- Jahvid Best–555 career rushing yards, not a goal line back
- Knowshon Moreno–Change his middle name to “Questionable”
- Ahmad Bradshaw–These rankings are terrible, but Bradon Jacobs
- LeGarrette Blount
- DeAngelo Williams–Jonathan Stewart.
- Shonn Greene–LaToe Injury.
So, take a look there. That’s just the “top 20.” In a 10 team league, you’re probably going to draft about 40-50 running backs, upwards of 60 in a 12-team league. Think of the issues the guys are going to have once you get to the bottom of that barrel. Ok, that’s enough fantasy talk for the day. I’ve got to immerse myself in projections (celebrity gossip websites) for the rest of the afternoon. I expect everyone to wish me luck with my draft, and good luck in yours, feel free to drop pearls of wisdom. You know, someone asked me, don’t people get information about your strategy by reading your blog, and I just say, even when they know what’s coming, they can’t stop it.