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Award Show and Wild Card Extravaganza!

Initially built by NASA to set lines for the Las Vegas casinos in the late 1950s (Who do you think funded the Apollo missions? The government? It was the mob …), The Sin City Betbot 6000 calculated lines for more than 30 years. The Betbot was given various upgrades through the years, not always with the best equipment, but he was very good at setting lines and living the good life.

The Betbot was de-commissioned in 1990 after San Francisco destroyed Denver in the Super Bowl. The 45-point spread simply fried a number of the Betbot’s wires and he retired. The Betbot was discovered by and retooled to give fantasy advice. He lives now to give his own unique, well-cultured take on the NFL. The Sin City Betbot 6000 Presents is transcribed by Joe Petrizzi and Tom Walls because “typing … BZZT … is a dame’s job.”

A year ends and another begins. We stop and reflect on lost friends and look forward to new opportunities. I lost a lot of friends this year. I never get old, and I watch dear friends of mine pass into the great unknown. It’s kind of like a curse, except I never get hurt or die. I guess it isn’t really like a curse, but it does kind of suck.

One such friend of mine passed on a long while ago. No, not Frank, or Sammy, or Dino. I was thinking of a place, not a person. The Sands Hotel in my hometown (I don’t consider Cape Kennedy my hometown, even though it’s where I was first brought to life), Las Vegas. Yes, there is now something called ‘the Sands Expo Center’ which is in Vegas, but it isn’t the Sands.

The Sands was an experience, more so than a place. It’s the kind of place where you could relax and spend time with your close, personal friends. Of course, my close, personal friends were very important compared to the general public’s close, personal friends, but you get my drift.

I’m reminded of my New Years’ Extravaganza from 1962. I had a ton of good friends onstage with me – Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Liberace, Shirley MacLaine, Nipsy Russell and Hank Aaron just to name a few. The show was at the Sands, and it was magical.

I miss the Sands, and I miss Sammy and Dino, but I sure as bleeping hell wouldn’t trade my immortality for dying naturally as my friends. Death freaks me out like nothing else.

One note: I wanted to write a full wild card round picks column this week but the
Randy Moss

LVP rant below really left me worn out, so I will give you my summaries here.

+10 over New Orleans

– I like the Saints, but the Seahawks are tough at home and exactly who will be playing running back behind
Drew Brees? Brees and friends will have a tough time salting this one away even though they are a significantly better team.

New York

– The Jets are a better team, and the Colts have been running on empty for weeks now. The dome will not save them unless
Mark Sanchez

has one of his bad games.

KANSAS CITY +3 over Baltimore

– I actually like the Ravens as a better team, but the Chiefs play ball control and tight defense and will ultimately keep it close. Arrowhead is a notorious equalizer, so watch out for this game.

-2.5 over Green Bay

– Every pundit and their brother is taking the Packers, heading on the road, to face a team that essentially had last week off. I don’t get it. I know
Michael Vick has looked human for most of December, but if
Andy Reid

is smart he will run
LeSean McCoy

through the porous Green Bay run defense. Stop laughing. Still, Vick is the X Factor, and long time readers know I always play the X Factor.

Now, on to the awards!

Most Valuable Player – QB – Michael Vick – 66%

Vick single-handedly got fantasy owners into their playoffs and was universally a free agent pickup. Sure some dog haters in 
Atlanta may have taken him for old time’s sake, but Vick is a phenomenon this year. Pretty boy
Tom Brady

was excellent down the stretch, excellent; but high … BZZT … performance was expected of him. Even though Vick didn’t start every game, he deserves this prize. If Brady performed as he did for the last eight weeks of the season all year long, he would win this award. As it is … Brady can sit in the back with his wife and

my kid


Least Valuable Player – QB – Brett Favre – 75%

Let me say for the record that I truly hope this is the last thing I write about Favre. It has been quite a career for him, but all good things must come to an end, and the good part of his career came to an end about five years ago. Favre has been teetering on the edge of un-rosterable for some time now, yet an easy 2009 schedule brought some tasty stats that lured you right back into his clutches. And then, as is his wont, Favre delivered a real “turd” in 2010. So now you know how fans of Favre’s actual teams have been feeling for years – built full of expectations only to get

slammed in the gut

with disappointment. Thankfully, you had the opportunity to kick him to the curb and salvage your fantasy team, unlike the poor saps

left crying in his wake

as he ended their NFL season in shocking horror. The king is dead. Long live the king.

Most Valuable Player – RB – Arian Foster – 77%

Foster won the rushing title; this one was pretty easy.
Peyton Hillis

gave Foster a run for his money and would have been a worthy choice also. Yes, Hillis was a free agent pickup, but Foster was gotten very late in early drafts (Round 20 of the Fanex Analysis Draft), and was consistently excellent for his fantasy owners.

Least Valuable Player – RB – DeAngelo Williams – 55%

This was a close race – Williams barely scored a majority of votes thanks to the flaming “bag ‘o feces” that
Shonn Greene

threw on your porch in 2010. I have a vested interest in seeing Greene punished, yet I will yield to the sharks here and instead direct my venom at Williams. Look, it’s one thing to have a bad season, and playing behind
Jimmy Clausen

will almost guarantee certain failure. But it’s quite another thing to drop your yards per carry by a full yard from last season, put up a paltry 361 yards, score one measly touchdown, and then call it a season around Week 7. That is a foul, foul stench emanating from this corpse, sir. So when your first-round pick does this, you know he’s approaching
Merrill Hoge

levels of sucking and rightly deserves to be recognized as a total balloon knot.

Most Valuable Player – WR – Roddy White – 50%

Despite some incredible bitching in the Tank about adding
Brandon Lloyd

to the nomination pool, White wins out. And it’s the right *bleeping* choice. Lloyd had a great year and put up a ton of yards, but he slowed down a bit in the second half. White was consistent and excellent all year long.

Least Valuable Player – WR – Randy Moss – 96%

I’m not sure there is much to say about Moss’ 2010 season, at least that isn’t already obvious to you, dear reader. Ninety-six percent of the vote says a lot, so allow me to take a moment and celebrate Moss. Moss started the year as one of the top wide receivers in fantasy ball after a glorious 83-reception, 1,264-yard, 13-touchdown year in 2009 with the New England Patriots. Things got off to a rocky start as Moss only posted nine catches in his first four games, and then ran his way out of New England by being a general malcontent. You know that if world-class jerk
Bill Belichick can’t take your act, you are a real bad mother. I mean, Belichick worked for
Bill Parcells for years; he knows how to put up with insufferable. Anyway,
Brad Childress

redefined the term “

greatest fool

” when he traded a third-round pick for Moss in Week 5, only to watch Moss post 13 receptions in four games before releasing him outright. I could go on about Childress and his ineptitude, but let’s just say that this mistake was the largest of many in a long line of blunders that ultimately cost Childress his job in December. Apparently, Moss was dropped because he made some derogatory comments about the pre-game buffet.

Undeterred by his destructive first half, Tennessee claimed Moss off waivers in Week 8. Moss thereby upped his reign of terror to unforeseen levels, posting six receptions for the rest of the season

while mostly riding the pine behind luminaries such as
Nate Washington. The Titans, 6-2 at the time they claimed Moss, proceeded to lose their final eight games of the season – a bungling so remarkable that it cost everyone on
Jeff Fisher’s staff their job this week.

In the future, we will look at Moss’ 2010 season as one of the most amazing feats of pure awful ever witnessed in professional sports. The final tally for those of you keeping score: 28 catches, 393 yards, five touchdowns, one head coach’s job, one full staff replacement, and legions of fantasy owners practicing their face-palm technique. I am spent, and yet we still have tight ends to discuss – forgive my brevity from here on in as I need a stiff drink.

Most Valuable Player – TE – Antonio Gates – 48%

The only win without at least half the votes … and the winner I agree least with. Gates had an awesome first half of the year, but disappeared down the stretch.
Marcedes Lewis

Jason Witten

each received 26 percent of the vote. My vote would have gone to Lewis, but it’s hard to complain much with Gates, who was a monster in the beginning of the 2010 season.

Least Valuable Player – TE – Brent Celek – 66%

Celek was universally awful this year, seeing a marked decline in his stats, ending at 42 receptions, 511 yards, four touchdowns for the season. On the surface this looks OK, until you realize that 12 receptions, 169 yards, and one touchdown of that were notched in Weeks 15 and 16, long after you dumped his rotting carcass for one of the rookies in New England. Celek didn’t post 50 yards or more in a game until Week 12 and did not have a single 100-yard game in 2010 (he had three last season). He also threw up absolute zeroes in two games this year, as well as a spectacular two-catch, eight-yard game in Week 7. I’m also pretty sure he led the league in “Is Brent Celek playing today or is he hurt?!!?” panic comments in the main tank. I cannot explain his behavior, but I will say that he has spent most of this season apologizing profusely on Philadelphia sports radio. He should stuff his sorries in a sack.

So long for now, and remember, “Showgirls and gin my friends, showgirls and … BZZT … gin.”

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