Wednesday - Jan 23, 2019

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The Sin City BetBot Presents

Initially built by NASA to set lines for the Las Vegas casinos in the late 50’s (who do you think funded the Apollo missions? The government? It was the mob…), The Sin City

Betbot 6000 calculated lines for over 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 Fantasysharks.com and retooled to give fantasy advice. He lives now to help your team with deeper sleepers to start each week.

 

The Betbot’s column is transcribed each week by Chris Dolfi, Joe Petrizzi and Tom Walls, because, “Typing is a dame’s BZZZT job.”

 

It’s December, kids, and you know what that means!  That’s right, time for the …BZZZT… Sin City BetBot 6000 Awards.  Those of you who have been following my advice have already got this season wrapped up like bacon on a nice plump scallop, so it’s time to hand out the hardware.  I scoured this years fantasy stats looking for the most surprising and most disappointing players in the game.  It took me all of 10 minutes, because I’m an …BZT… advanced fantasy football machine, but you should know that I spent 2 of those minutes preparing myself a Martini and lighting up a Montecristo.  Lest you think these vices will impair my faculties, I always perform better with a little juice in me, just like …BZZT… Howard Cosell.  Cosell was a good man, a good bleeping man.  He liked his journalism like a fine scotch – straight up.  Plus, I revere any man that derives pleasure from …BZZZZT… making Frank Gifford look like an idiot.

 

Anyway, I took the fantasy performance for each player at the six major positions (get your head out of the gutter and grow up) and put it through my patented analysis software, called JACKPOT.  JACKPOT is an advanced algorithm originally designed to set lines on actual MVP and Pro Bowl awards.  I’ve since modified it to determine my MVP and LVP winners, among other things.  For example, JACKPOT recently helped me score a Château Palmer 1961, a lovely Bordeaux making …BZT… residence in my cellar as we speak.  In order to generate a full list, I ran JACKPOT three times for my MVP and three times for my LVP, and each time JACKPOT ran, it generated 5 names, which I consolidated using a secret point system.  Actually, it’s not secret at all, I just want to finish this column before my …BZZT… Martini gets too warm.  Plus, Svetlana will be here in 22 minutes and I need to find my Tchaikovsky mix tape.  So, I’ll cover the MVP this week and handle the LVP next week.

 

The Royal Flush MVP award (6) is awarded to the player who was the most surprising (deeper sleeper) fantasy stud at his position for the year – think low expectations, but surprisingly high value (like a bottle of Mezcal). 

 

The JACKPOT results:

 

The Royal Flush MVP at Quarterback

Drew Brees (SD) – 15 points(3 first place votes)

 

Others receiving votes:

Jake Delhomme (CAR) – 8(0)

Carson Palmer (CIN) – 6(0)

Jake Plummer (DEN) – 4(0)

Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) – 4(0)

Peyton Manning (IND) – 3(0)

Vinny Testaverde (DAL) – 2(0)

David Carr (HOU) – 1(0)

Kerry Collins (OAK) – 1(0)

Brett Favre (GB) – 1(0)

 

Talk about a …BZZT… turnaround story.  Six months ago Drew Brees wasn’t even the starter after a passing season that had Chargers fans switching off the football game to watch the latest Ron Popeil infomercial.   Now he’s one of the highest rated QBs in the league!  Through week 15, he’s bringing 2700+ yards, 23 TDs, and only 5 INTs – hell he even punched two in on the ground, the FF equivalent of …BZZT… finding a $100 chip in your pocket at the casino.  All this coming from a player that went undrafted in every league outside of the Brees Family Fantasy League (BFFL)?  There’s a reason JACKPOT rang him three times in a row for the full 15 point sweep – there was no QB in the league that …BZZT… surprised me more.  Breaking news – Brees’ agent just dumped his wife and bought a yacht.

 

You can’t really take much away from Jake Delhomme or Carson Palmer – in a non-Brees universe they might have tied for this award, which would have made for a nice “CATFIGHT!” headline if I was …BZZT… doing this for ESPN.  Roethlisberger’s another huge surprise – people are still waiting for him to lose – and for what?  To say “I told you he wouldn’t ALWAYS win at this level!”  Some mediocre fantasy stats puts him in the …BZZT… Bob Dole “also-ran” category, but for someone who was on the second page of most cheat sheets in August, I say not bad kid. Manning was supposed to be good, but even Peter King (who suggested taking Manning #1 in all fantasy drafts) didn’t see this coming.  Testaverde, Carr, Collins, and Favre are in the noise, although there can’t be too many people who had Vinny still walking in week 15.  I know I had him in my …BZZT… dead pool.  Meh – at least Ol’ Dirty Bastard came through for me.

 

The Royal Flush Co-MVP at Running Back

Jerome Bettis (PIT) – 10(1)

Reuben Droughns (DEN) – 10(1)

 

Others receiving votes:

Curtis Martin (NYJ) – 6(0)

Tiki Barber (NYG) – 5(1)

Emmitt Smith (ARI) – 5(0)

Nick Goings (CAR) – 4(0)

Michael Pittman (TB) – 4(0)

Willis McGahee (BUF) – 1(0)

 

Well, it looks like the …BZZT… Bus still has gas in his tank. God, how many times have you heard that this season? As annoying as that analogy is, it’s true. While left for half dead in…BZT… Pittsburgh, like a zombie in a George Romero flick, Bettis is alive and craves brains! Sorry, but I love those Romero flicks. Nothing like a scary Betamax tape plugged into Yours Truly and projected onto the wall to make a showgirl snuggle up…BZZZT… all the tighter.

 

Anyway, Bettis slipped into the later rounds of many…BZZZT… drafts not held near Primanti Brothers Restaurant (it’s a sandwich with cole slaw and fries on it…whooppeee!).  He has been a pleasant surprise for anyone who took him. Rushing TDs, Passing TDs, 100 yard games, the works!! With…BZZZT… Staley’s injuries, Betties stepped up for the Steelers and many fantasy teams this year.

 

In many ways, this was the hardest category to calculate. After all, a lot of people on this list are here because of injuries, and predicting injuries is a loser’s game. The Denver…BZT… RB situation was a mess going into the season, and in many drafts 3 or 4 RBs got picked in the draft. Droughns was most likely not one of those 3 or 4, however. If someone told…BZZT…BZT… you they drafted him, they were either in a 16 team league, or drunk, either when they drafted him, or when they told you the lie ABOUT drafting him. Either way, if you have been reading my columns, you know fantasy football, and you know what Droughns has done. He is a worthy…BZZT… selection for this award.

 

Bettis, Martin, and Smith signaled The Year of the Old School Running Backs, with great years for these future Hall of Famers. Barber and Pittman are ball carriers in the end of their projected prime years who had another good year. Pittman of …BZT…course was only active for part of the season after serving out his suspension, he certainly has made the most of his time, though. Goings and Droughns are RBs who were so far down the depth chart they weren’t even drafted. If Goings had gotten into the action a little…BZZT… earlier, he probably would have been up there with Droughns and Bettis, he’s another back who…BZZZT…made the most of his situation.

 

The Royal Flush MVP at Wide Receiver

Brandon Stokley (IND) – 12(1)

 

Others receiving votes:

Muhsin Muhammad (CAR) – 8(1)

Reggie Wayne (IND) – 5(1)

Drew Bennett (TEN) – 4(0)

Michael Clayton (TB) – 4(0)

T.J. Houshmandzadeh (CIN) – 4(0)

Javon Walker (GB) – 3(0)

Nate Burleson (MIN) – 2(0)

Eddie Kennison (KC) – 2(0)

Terrell Owens (PHI) – 1(0)

 

This was a tough one for me. Another category with a lot of great contenders. Stokley and Wayne were the benefactors of a gifted dealer in Peyton Manning. The Colts offense is certainly explosive and Stokley, Wayne and Harrison have all had very good years. Stokley, however, is really the biggest surprise. Most likely, Stokley was taken in your draft as a flyer – but, wow, he has delivered.  With three games left to play, Stokley has already …BZZT… tripled his career high in TDs (9) and is closing in on 1000 yards for the season (career high = 357 yards).  The knock on Stokley is his inconsistency, but lost in that is his good games are multi-touchdown explosions that can carry a fantasy team.  This award comes without any expectations that he’ll reciprocate – as for the real world pub he’s getting, he should get Peyton Manning a …BZZT… hooker for Christmas.

 

Muhammad and Clayton were players who, again, made the most of another player’s misfortune – hey, that’s how it is in the NFL.  TJ Housh…BZZZT…is a younger player who is hitting his stride just now but nobody had him pegged for any type of fantasy value.  Javon Walker looked to be valuable as the only receiver of note in Green Bay, but he’s been a top 5 receiver in most formats.

 

The Royal Flush MVP at Tight End

Antonio Gates (SD) – 12(1)

 

Others receiving votes:

Jason Witten (DAL) – 9(0)

Jermaine Wiggins (MIN) – 8(1)

Alge Crumpler (ATL) – 6(1)

Dallas Clark (IND) – 4(0)

Eric Johnson (SF) – 3(0)

Daniel Graham (NE) – 2(0)

Chris Cooley (WAS) – 1(0)

 

Antonio Gates was getting some mighty sleeper buzz all summer thanks to San Diego’s supposedly inept QB and WR corps.  Turns out Gates was distracting the referee while Drew Brees was …BZZT… playing possum in the corner, waiting for us to turn away so he could smash us with a steel chair.  All Gates did was go out and crush the rest of an unusually great TE class this year.  Seriously, tight end is usually the position where you either …BZZT… get Gonzalez or you’re happy to snag a wily vet like Christian Fauria and hope he pulls down a ball in the end zone a few times a year.  This year we had Gates, Witten, Wiggins, Crumpler, Clark, Johnson – come on!  Most of these guys had weeks where they carried teams.  But only Gates was a certified stud, far outscoring all other tight ends while pulling down 11 TDs, the most since Gonzo’s breakout 1999 campaign.  He’s a good bet to post over 80+ receptions and 1000+ yards, which puts his …BZZT… season among the all-time greatest TE seasons in fantasy history.  I bet you could have had him in the 8th or 10th round in your draft, about the time you selected Mike Alstott.

 

A special mention to Daniel Graham, whose 5-1 reception/TD ratio and season-long fade reminds me of a season ripped out of …BZZT… Bubba Franks’ career log.  And before you ask, no, I haven’t seen them both together.

 

The Royal Flush MVP at Kicker

Shayne Graham (CIN) – 14(2)

 

Others receiving votes:

Nate Kaeding (SD) – 8(0)

Josh Scobee (JAC) – 7(1)

Adam Vinatieri (NE) – 6(0)

Jeff Reed (PIT) – 3(0)

John Carney (NO) – 2(0)

Matt Stover (BAL) – 2(0)

David Akers (PHI) – 1(0)

Ryan Lindell (BUF) – 1(0)

Neil Rackers (ARI) – 1(0)

 

A lot of weeks, Shayne Graham was the Bengals offense. He may have been drafted in your league if you were in a large league, or a league where everyone took two kickers. If he was drafted, he was probably not drafted until the last two rounds. This is all I am going to say about this category. It’s bleeping kickers. Now, if I had a punters bracket, I could go on and on about Mr. Todd Sauerbrun (someone take this man’s keys already).

 

The Royal Flush MVP at Defense and Special Teams

Indianapolis Colts – 9(1)

 

Others receiving votes:

Atlanta Falcons – 8(1)

Chicago Bears – 6(0)

Buffalo Bills – 5(0)

Pittsburgh Steelers – 5(1)

Cincinnati Bengals – 4(0)

Seattle Seahawks – 4(0)

Detroit Lions – 3(0)

Arizona Cardinals – 1(0)

 

Not much to analyze here.  Picking defenses is the dice game of fantasy football.  Determining the outcome year-to-year is about as difficult as understanding why Star Jones has a career.  Seriously – someone who’s totally annoying can be useful if that person is steaming hot, but annoying AND ugly?  I just don’t …BZT… get it.  Anyway, I also don’t get how the Colts could be a valuable fantasy squad, but here they are racking up sacks (41) and punching in TDs (4).  The Falcons are another D/ST that was brutal last year only to come up smelling like a fresh breeze this year.  I’m not sure how the Steelers made it into JACKPOT’s results with a first place vote – I think everyone expected them to be pretty good.  Whatever, they’ll probably suck …BZZT… eggs next year.

 

Help Decide the BetBot Grand Champion!

The BetBot Grand Champion award is given to the Royal Flush MVP winner who was the ultimate surprise for the year, at any position.  I had Petrizzi post a ballot on the shark forums so that you can help me crown the Grand Champion and post your comments about the nominees.  If you post something interesting, I’ll add it to my column when I present the award during my Week 17 award show, so get out there and vote!

 

Next week I’ll be back with the Merrill Hoge LVP Awards and I’ll also answer any questions you have for me about the playoffs.

 

Feedback Loop

 

Dear Sin City Betbot 6000,

 

I know you are a faithless robot, but what do you think of Christmas?

 

Dave W.

Boston, MA

 

Dear Dave W.,

 

I’ve told my faithful readers this before, but I am a Catholic. I even met the Pope once, I’ll tell you about this some other day. For now, just know, that I believe…BZZT… Jesus Christ is my personal savior.

 

Anyway, I’ll try to answer your real question here, which is what do I think of the Christmas season, and everything that comes with it? I love it. I love the…BZZZT… decorations, I love the good cheer, and I love getting a leggy showgirl under the mistletoe. Ah, how many sessions of sweet were started by that poisonous sprig? But I wax poetic at my reader’s expense.

 

I actually had a series of Christmas shows that NBC would show…BZZZT… right before the Bob Hope Specials in the 60s and 70s. The first one was in 1964. It was basically me and The Rat Pack singing and talking about what Christmas meant to us. Even Sammy, who had converted to Judaism in 1956, but still loved the message of…BZZT… Christmas time, also, the special was a nice payday for him. 

 

The tapes are lost now, and very few remember the shows, but what great fun!! The after parties were legendary! Let me tell you – you get a showgirl on national TV, and she is very gracious!! Youch!!

 

The songs were a lot of rip-offs of existing Christmas songs, but lots of fun. In our inaugural show, my…BZT… favorite song was ‘It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Betbot’. I leave you this week with the lyrics to this song. I hope you enjoy! Remember to…BZZT… vote this week in the Annual Sin City Betbot 6000 Awards!!

 

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Betbot

 

It’s beginning to look a lot like Betbot

Everywhere you go;

Take a trip down on to  the strip

Showgirl Holly on your hip

With makeup and super long gams to show

It’s beginning to look a lot like Betbot

Kings in all the hands

But the prettiest sight you’ll see is

The 3 point Packers-Bears spread

at the Sands

 

Dames with a low and loose blouse, a Kings high full house,

Is the wish of Deano and Sam

Free drinks at Mickey’s and well placed hickeys

Is the hope of every man

And Joey and Frank can hardly wait for the Betbot to sing again

It’s beginning to look a lot like Betbot

Everywhere you go

The Flamingo is ablaze, gambling tables in a maze

It’s a hard eight you really need to throw

It’s beginning to look a lot like Betbot

Session of sweet with a tart

And the thing that will make you rich, the gambling needs that you itch (yeah)

The Betbot in your heart!

 

If you have any questions for the Betbot, please send them to his Fantasysharks contact at twalls@fantasysharks.com .

 

So long, and remember – showgirls and Gin, my friends – Showgirls and BZZZZT Gin

 

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.