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The Power of Projections

I have been playing Fantasy Football for quite a few years now and seeing as I became a professional handicapper long before my first fantasy draft, I have always taken a “numbers” approach when it came to the game of fantasy football. My years of professional handicapping prepared me for the work required to build a winning fantasy football team and over the last few years I have managed to win more then my fair share of weekly prizes and league championships by following one simple rule. Never let emotion cloud logic.

 

This has long been a rule of successful professional handicapper and gamblers. Far too many people let their emotions for their home teams cloud their logic when placing their bets. A perfect example of this was the 2002 Super Bowl.

 

Being a San Francisco bay area native, I got to witness first hand the Raider Nation mania spread, listen to the maniac fans calling into every sports radio station talking about how the Raiders offense was too strong for Tampa Bay and that the Raiders where going to win this game with relative ease, and watch hundreds of bay area residents dump hard earned cash blindly as they bet on the Raiders to cover the spread. Emotion clouded logic and in this case cost a lot of people a lot of money. This same rule applies to fantasy football.

 

So with this rule in mind, my handicapping skills, and my years of fantasy football experience I have been keeping track of off-season movement, watching injury reports, and keeping a close eye on contract negotiations as I tackle the 2003 season and what I have learned I will share with you over the next few weeks. So get out your pencil and paper, take your seat, shut up and pay attention cause football season is close at hand. Are your ready? Let’s jump right in.

 

Everyone is a prognosticator especially when it comes to football. Everyone comes out with predictions that they swear will lead you to fantasy football greatness. Brett Favre will throw this many touchdowns, Vick will run for this many yards, Owens will make this many receptions. There is so much information out there that it is easy to find one or two that you “trust” and depend on those sources come draft day. Remember, don’t let emotion cloud logic, and don’t give in to the feeling of “trust” and the relative ease of someone else’s rankings and predictions. Someone can easily tell you the Vick is the number one racked QB but is that in a scoring or performance league? Are they using a scoring system with bonuses for long touchdowns? You have to come up with your own. But how you ask. Simple, use all of them. That’s right, use all the predictions you can find to come up with your own then by applying your leagues own scoring system you will come up with personalized rankings. But remember none and I mean NONE of these predictions will mean anything to you unless you apply your OWN leagues scoring system.  

 

I have taken the liberty of collecting predictions from 8 different locations, combining them, then applying the heart of the ESPN performance league offensive scoring system, which is listed below, to come up with my own rankings.

 

 

                   1 point for every 25 yards passing

                   1 point for every 10 yards rushing

                   4 points per touchdown pass

                   6 points per touchdown rushing or receiving

                   -2 points per interception

 

 

Today we are going to start off with Quarterbacks. By compiling all the 2003 projected stats per category (Passing Yards, Passing TD’s, Rushing Yards, Rushing TD’s, and Interceptions), adding those projections together per category and dividing that total by the total number of predictions used (8) I came up with both a total points prediction and points per game prediction. Then by applying that overall prediction to my leagues scoring system I came up with a league personalized ranking for Quarterbacks. Here is an example,

 

Here are the 2 different projected stats for Culpepper.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pass

Pass

Pass

 

Rush

Rush

 

 

 

 

Bye

GP

Att

Cmp

Yds

TDs

Int

Car

Yds

TDs

2 .

Daunte Culpepper,

MIN

QB

6

16

515

317

3,797

23.3

18.5

95

534

7

 

 

Rank

Name

Team

Bye

Passing

Rushing

Yards

TDs

Int

Yards

TDs

3

Culpepper, Daunte

MIN

6

3800

22

18

500

8

 

 

So if we take the projected passing yards from both (3,797 and 3,800) and added them together (7,597), then divided by the number of projections used (2) we would be a overall projection (3,798.5).

 

Now we know that Culpepper’s overall projected passing yards for 2003 are 3,799 yards. Ok…now what? Well we also know that we get 1 point for every 25 yards Culpepper throws right? So divide 3,799 by 25 and you will see Culpepper’s projected points for passing yards, 152.

 

 

 

Isn’t it easy to see how much better off you will be on draft day if you take the time to make your own league personalized ranking instead of depending on fantasy football magazines, websites, or books? By applying this system to all your key positions (QB, RB, WR, and TE), you can walk in on draft day confident and prepared.

 

Now before showing you the outcome of all my labor let me take this moment to tell you two things. First, fantasy football magazines, websites, and book are great sources of information just be aware of the differences in the scoring system used make their rankings when compared to the scoring system in your league. Second, there is one other thing that you have to be aware of to make smart and profitable decision come draft day, the proper draft day strategy. We will cover that next week, now onto my top 20 QB’s ranking and predictions. Enjoy.

 

 

 

PLAYER

PASS

TD

RUSH

TD

INT

TP

TPG

Michael Vick

3319

21

795

8

10

325

20

Donovan McNabb

3596

25

591

6

11

321

20

Daunte Culpepper

3796

23

524

7

16

304

19

Rich Gannon

4125

25

176

2

9

280

18

Jeff Garcia

3708

26

312

3

11

276

17

Peyton Manning

4153

28

134

2

16

270

17

Aaron Brooks

3752

26

286

2

15

265

17

Steve McNair

3353

21

373

3

13

248

16

Kurt Warner

3927

28

50

0

16

243

15

Matt Hasselbeck

3668

23

207

1

12

240

15

Trent Green

3636

23

186

1

12

239

15

Brett Favre

3758

27

65

1

16

238

15

Tom Brady

3464

24

92

1

12

225

14

Kerry Collins

3887

21

49

0

12

223

14

Drew Bledsoe

3687

22

53

1

12

220

14

Chad Pennington

3370

22

64

1

10

218

14

Brad Johnson

3464

21

47

1

9

216

14

Jake Plummer

3363

20

225

1

16

212

13

Kordell Stewart

2826

15

393

4

12

211

13

Tommy Maddox

3527

23

57

0

16

208

13

 

 

Legend:

PASS = Total Passing Yards

TD = Touchdowns

Rush = Total Rushing Yards

Int = Interceptions

TP = Total Points

TPG = Total Points Per Game

About Fantasy Sharks

FantasySharks.com began in 2003, disseminating fantasy football content on the web for free. It is, or has been, home to some of the most talented and best known fantasy writers on the planet. Owned and operated by Tony Holm (5 time Fantasy Sports Writer Association Hall-of-Fame nominee,) Tony started writing fantasy content in 1993 for the only three fantasy football web sites in existence at the time.