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Week 5: First Quarter Review

Welcome to week five of the Brew Crew Corner. Four games in the books and 12 more yet to be played and already it’s been an up and down fantasy season. Four more teams on a bye, more injuries to deal with, a trade and a rookie signing to make things interesting. Though Michael Crabtree signed, he’ll have minimal fantasy impact if any at all. First he’s got to get into game shape, then he’s got to learn the playbook and prove himself to his team before he even sees the field for an extended amount of time. I’ll pass on him this season.

What a crazy chain of events in Cleveland. First Braylon Edwards goes without a catch then he gets into a confrontation with a friend of LeBron James and next thing you know he’s traded to the Jets for some backups, a few picks and bag of magic beans. Eric Mangini has been cleaning house and giving the Jets the best players on their roster. Let’s recap the wonderful trades the Browns have given to the Jets this season. It started on draft day. The Browns gave the Jets the 5th overall pick which the Jets selected Mark Sanchez for their 1st round pick (No. 17 overall), 2nd round pick (No. 52 overall), DE Kenyon Coleman, QB Brett Ratliff and S Abram Elam. The Browns gave up Braylon Edwards for WR Chansi Stuckey, LB Jason Trusnik and two 2010 draft picks (a third-rounder, which could move up to a second-rounder, and a fifth-rounder). What’s next for the Browns? Shawn Rodgers for punter Steve Weatherford? Mangini has done more for the Jets this season then he’s done for his own team.

There are now 5 teams that are undefeated as well as 6 teams that are winless.

Here are the Top 5 fantasy players in each category.

Top 5 QBs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Peyton Manning 89 FPTs

2. Aaron Rodgers 88 FPTs

3. Philip Rivers 82 FPTs

4. Ben Roethlisberger 81 FPTs

5. Joe Flacco 78 FPTs

2009 QB FPTs ave 83.6

2008 QB FPTs ave 83.0

QB scoring this season is the same as it was last season through 4 weeks.

Top 5 RBs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Chris Johnson 98 FPTs

2. Adrian Peterson 98 FPTs

3. Maurice Jones-Drew 91 FPTs

4. Ronnie Brown 83 FPTs

5. Fred Jackson 82 FPTs

2009 RB FPTs ave 90.4

2008 RB FPTs ave 93.8

RB scoring this season is down 3.8 points compared to last season through 4 weeks.

Top 5 WRs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Steve Smith (NY) 98 FPTs

2. Reggie Wayne 82 FPTs

3. Vincent Jackson 68 FPTs

4. Randy Moss 67 FPTs

5. Mike Sims-Walker 64 FPTs

2009 WR FPTs ave 75.8

2008 WR FPTs ave 85.0

WR scoring this season is down 9.2 points compared to last season through 4 weeks. That’s a significant drop off.

Top 5 TEs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Dallas Clark 73 FPTs

2. Antonio Gates 69 FPTs

3. Brent Celek 57 FPTs

4. Chris Cooley 57 FPTs

5. Vernon Davis 55 FPTs

2009 TE FPTs ave 62.2

2008 TE FPTs ave 49.4

TE scoring this season is up 12.8 points compared to last season through 4 weeks. That is a big increase.

Top 5 PKs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Lawrence Tynes 48 FPTs

2. Stephen Gostkowski 45 FPTs

3. Josh Scobee 41 FPTs

4. Mason Crosby 40 FPTs

5. Ryan Longwell 40 FPTs

2009 PK FPTs ave 42.8

2008 PK FPTs ave 48.2

PK scoring this season is down 5.4 points compared to last season through 4 weeks. A big decrease.

Top 5 DSTs

According to Shark League Scoring

1. Saints Def 76 FPTs

2. 49ers Def 71 FPTs

3. Broncos Def 66 FPTs

4. Giants Def 64 FPTs

5. Vikings Def 59 FPTs

2009 DST FPTs ave 67.2

2008 DST FPTs ave 54.4

DST scoring this season is up 12.8 points compared to last season through 4 weeks. A big increase.

Teams off on the bye week: Bears, Packers, Saints, Chargers

THOUGHTS AND OBSERVATIONS WEEK 4

Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots

The Ravens fell short against the Patriots and it wasn’t because of the offense. Joe Flacco had two TDs and Ray Rice went for 103 rushing while McGahee got a TD to help his poor fantasy day. Derrick Mason continues to produce but lets hope he’s healthy enough to play this week. Mark Clayton dropped a pass that would have given the Ravens a first and Goal.

Tom Brady needed a rushing TD and a late TD to Randy Moss to save his fantasy day. Moss and Brady need more big plays. What disturbed me wasn’t the bad foul call the refs called on the Ravens but the way Tom Brady cried for a flag. Seriously, I know every player wants a flag thrown ever play they don’t get but that was a Punk move by Brady. Fred Taylor will miss time due to ankle surgery. Pick up Sammy Morris.

Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins

In the battle to stay out of the basement the Dolphins come away with the win. The RBs led the way with two scores from Ronnie Brown. The passing game will take time to get on track but Henne can throw the ball down field.

The talk in Dallas is that they should have never gotten rid of T.O. but he hasn’t played great in Buffalo. He total 60 ReYDs but was held to just 3 catches. I think the problem is the play calling and Trent Edwards inconsistency. Marshawn Lynch returned from his suspension and put up a dud.

Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns

Shawn Rodgers kept the Browns in the game with a FG and extra point block but it was wasted as the Bengals won in overtime. You would think with Derek Anderson back at QB that Braylon Edwards would see the end zone but he was held without a catch and was thrown to just 5 times. Mohamed Massaquoi led the Browns with 8 rec for 148 ReYDs. I don’t expect games like that often. The Browns are in a race with the Rams as the league’s worse team while Mangini continues his fire sale.

The Bengals struggled to put the Browns away as Carson Palmer threw to TD passes to Chad Ochocinco. Cedric Benson ran for 74 RuYDs but we are seeing Bernard Scott getting some more touches. Laveranues Coles continues to play poorly as he has just 10 catches on the season with 78 ReYDs and 1 TD. The Bengals have been spreading the ball around to as many receivers as they can which hurts everyone’s bottom line.

Dallas Cowboys at Denver Broncos

The Broncos are now 4-0 and its thanks to the play of their defense. After holding the Cowboys to just 74 RuYDs, the Broncos goaline stand kept them from tying the game in the closing seconds. Tony Romo had poor decision making and poor clock management.

From the Broncos side, Kyle Orton had a good game as he threw two TDs. Brandon Marshall made a big play down the stretch to win the game. Hopefully it will give him momentum going forward. Eddie Royal is still struggling and is in a big Sophomore slump. With Correll Buckhalter injured Knowshown Morano will get more carries going forward. He put in a decent game against a good defense.

Tony Romo has got to get someone the ball. Roy Williams was injured and instead of going to Jason Witten who caught all four passes his way, he throws the ball to Sam Hurd. Marion Barber scored and seems to be healthy. The Dallas offense needs some retooling.

Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears

The Bears lit up the scoreboard on the Lions and Jay Cutler is coming along. He didn’t have a ton of passing yards but he had two scores through the air and one on the ground. Matt Forte finally got out of a rut and put up 121 RuYDs and a TD. Keep an eye on Devin Hester‘s shoulder injury. Greg Olsen has not been much of a fantasy TE but he scored on his only catch.

The Lions are lucky that Matthew Stafford‘s knee injury wasn’t season ending. It looked pretty bad on the reply though. Let’s hope Daunte Culpepper comes in and throws a lot of balls to Calvin Johnson but they play the Steelers this week so it could get ugly early. Kevin Smith coming off a shoulder injury played and found the end zone twice.

New York Giants at Kansas City Chiefs

This game was out of reach early and a pair of late TDs made the score closer than it was. Lawrence Tynes continues to miss FGs but he’s still leading the league in PK scoring. Eli Manning had another big day but left with a foot injury which is now a Plantar. This will hinder him for awhile and he may not play this weekend. Steve Smith lead the way with 11 rec for 134 ReYDs and 2 ReTDs. Hakeem Nicks was active since his foot injury and he took his one catch to the house 54 yards. Mario Manningham could  find his way back to the bench as he was thrown to 8 times but caught just one pass.

Matt Cassel continues to throw TDs as he has 5 in 3 games but the yards are not there and he was held in check for most of the game. The Problem with the passing could be Dwayne Bowe‘s hamstring injury which has limited him. Not a great day for Larry Johnson and it will be another tough one as he faces the Cowboys in week 5.

New York Jets at New Orleans Saints

The Saints defense was all over Mark Sanchez and the Jets offense holding them to just 244 total yards while causing 4 turnovers. Jerricho Cotchery had a decent day and Thomas Jones scored their only TD.

Drew Brees after lighting it up the first two weeks of the season was on pace to break Tom Brady‘s TD record but the last two games he’s been held without a TD and is averaging just 181 PaYDs. Hopefully he can get back on track after the bye week. Pierre Thomas combined for 132 total yards and a score for the second week in a row.

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans

The Raiders played poorly and the team has got to ask themselves if they need to go in another direction at the QB position. Darren McFadden will miss time due to a knee injury. The schedule doesn’t get any better as they have the Giants, Eagles and Jets the next three weeks.

The Texans remain in the mix for the division as they put in another good offensive performance. The big story was Steve Slaton scoring his first TDs of the season both on the ground and in the air. Looking forward to this weeks matchup against the Cardinals so get all your players in.

San Diego Chargers at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers came out with haymakers early but the Chargers made it interesting late with 21 4th quarter points. Philip Rivers did all his damage in the second half finding Antonio Gates twice. Darren Sproles did not carry the ball as the Chargers ran just 7 times all by LaDainian Tomlinson for just 15 yards. they threw for most of the game. Chris Chambers is showing some life and maybe on the waivers if you check.

Ben Roethlisberger had his second 300 yard game of the season and added two TDs. He is the 4th QB in Shark leagues. Willie Parker did not play so Rashard Mendenhall ran all over the chargers for 165 RuYds and 2 TDs. Hines Ward goes over 110 ReYds but Santonio Holmes was held to just 52 yards. Big day for Heath Miller as he catches 8 passes for 70 ReYDs and 2 TDs. 

Seattle Seahawks at Indianapolis Colts

The Seahawks are playing like they did in 2008 when injuries hurt them. We finally saw some production from T.J. Houshmandzadeh, but not much from Nate Burleson. The Seahawks were out manned by the Colts on both sides of the ball. Edgerrin James faced his old team but had just 4 carries for 16 yards. He is averaging less than 15 yards a game.

The Colts are firing on all cylinders as they produced big plays on both sides of the ball. Peyton Manning threw for 353 PaYds with 2 TDs. Joseph Addai had 96 total yards with a score. Donald Brown also scored. Reggie Wayne is a top WR and he is now getting help from the other WRs Austin Collie and Pierre Garcon.

St. Louis Rams at San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers just beat the Rams down at home. Plain and simple.

Shaun Hill threw 2 TDs and The defense did the rest. Glen Coffee had 106 total yards but has yet to score. Vernon Davis is now 1 TD shy of matching his career best for TDs in a season and it’s only been 4 weeks. He’s already passed his TD total from last season and is 148 yards from passing his receiving total as well. Josh Morgan gets on the board. The team closed the deal on Michael Crabtree but don’t expect much right away.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Washington Redskins

Two struggling offenses dragged on for the entire game. Jason Campbell turned the ball over 5 times. Santana Moss surprised me as he had another productive game back to back, Clinton Portis was active and ran for 98. I was mad because I had benched him. Another solid game from Chris Cooley.

Josh Johnson’s first start was decent but he struggled. Antonio Bryant finally gets a TD but he had to layout to get it. Cadillac Williams ran well and will get more carries. Kellen Winslow has not been thrown to enough the past two games.

Tennessee Titans at Jacksonville Jaguars

Are these the same Titans that went 13-3 last season? The defense was destroyed by the David Garrard as he through for 323 yards and 3 TDs. His first 3 TD game since 2006. Maurice Jones-Drew scored a TD but was held to 14 RuYDs. Mike Sims-Walker has been Garrard’s favorite target as he posted 91 ReYds and 2 TDs. Torry Holt is not contributing much.

Chris Johnson had a decent game but nothing like he did in week 2. Kenny Britt is getting better. Will we see Vince Young if the team falls to 0-5?

Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings

This was by far the game of the week and a very

good Monday night game. Brett Favre stuck it to his old team and he put in a great performance throwing 3 TDs. Adrian Peterson scored but was held to just 55 RuYDs and was stripped for a fumble that was taken in for a score. Bernard Berrian scored and was targeted 10 times for 75 yards on 6 catches. The Vikings defense got after Aaron Rodgers and sacked him 8 times.

Rodgers played tough through the sacks throwing for almost 400 yards and tossing two TDs. Jermichael Finley had 128 ReYDs and a TD while Greg Jennings was held to 31 yards. Ryan Grant had no room to run as he carried just 11 times for 55 RuYDs but added 50 ReYDs.

Favre Bowl I goes to the Vikings but I think things will be different when they go to Green Bay.

The Golden Mug Award

Awarded to the fantasy player who came through for their team.

Rashard Mendenhall- 29 car 165 RuYDs 2 RuTDs. With Willie Parker out, Mendenhall had his best day as a pro. We’ll get another chance this week against the Lions. The question is if he has another big game, will he take the starting job away from Parker.

Steve Smith (NY) – 11 rec 134 ReYDs 2 ReTDs. Don’t look now but this Steve Smith, not the one in Carolina is the top WR in fantasy leagues. The Giants have proven they can throw the ball and Smith remains the go to guy when Eli Manning needs a play.

Antonio Gates – 9 rec 124 ReYDs 2 ReTDs. After being quiet the first 3 weeks of the season, Gates finally got into the end zone and went over the 100 yard mark. With the running game having its problems, Gates could get back to being the focus of the offense.

The Urinal Cake Award

Awarded to the fantasy player who you would like to, well you know.

Braylon Edwards- 0 rec 0 ReYDs. Mr. brick hands dropped his first pass and then was useless the rest of the game. Gets into a fight that night and then shipped out of Cleveland.

Kevin Walter- 1 rec 41 ReYDs. After getting back on the field in week 3. Many owners rushed to pick him up off waivers and use him in a great matchup against the Raiders only to see three passes go his way.

Mark Sanchez- 14 for 27 138 PaYDs 0 PaTDs, 3 INTs and 1 FUM. Sanchez has had his passing yards decline every game this season and as teams find weaknesses in his game, he will continue to struggle. We’ll see if having Braylon Edwards will help him.

MATCHUPS

The matchups I like this week for QBs:

Kurt Warner against the Texans. When two pass first teams with average defenses play each other it’s a great opportunity for a big fantasy day on both sides of the ball. The Texans are allowing 203.8 (9th) PaYDs and 23 points per game (21st). The Cardinals are coming off a bye and are 4th in the league in PaYDs with 274.3. Like they say, Start ’em if you got ’em.

Matt Schaub against the Cardinals. This is going to be a TD for TD game and both teams can put up yards through the air. The Texans are 9th in PaYDs with 249.2 and face a Cardinals team that allow 280.3 PaYDs (30th). It’s going to be a great to watch Andre Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald all game.

Ben Roethlisberger against the Lions. Big Ben has been throwing more and the Steelers are 3rd in PaYDs with 278.8. He faces the Lions team that still give up a ton of yards. The Lions have allowed 240.2 PaYDs as well as 33.5 points a game 32nd. It will be another big day for the Steelers offense.

The Matchups I like this week for RBs:

Rashard Mendenhall against the Lions. With Willie Parker a sure bet to set out another week. Mendenhall will run hard to win the starting job. He’ll benefit from the offense putting up big yards and will get into the end zone. The Lions are giving up 121 RuYDs (20th) with 4 RuTDs given up.

Marshawn Lynch against the Browns. The Browns have traded Josh Cribbs to the Jets for a Cheerleader. Just kidding but the Browns will be the cure for what’s ailing the Bills offense. Lynch came off his suspension last week but got just 8 carries for 4 yards so expect a bigger work load this week. The Browns are one of the league’s worst defenses and are allowing 176.8 RuYDs (31st) as well as giving up 29.5 points per game (31st).

Marion Barber against the Chiefs. Barber was ready to play last week after missing time with his quad injury and should be healthier this week for more carries. The Cowboys are running the ball well as they are 3rd in the league with 163.8 RuYDs. They face a Kansas City defense that has allowed a lot of yards on the ground as they give up 128.5 RuYDs (23rd) and are being scored on at 28.0 points per game (29th). With Roy Williams hurt, look for Barber to punch it in.

The matchups I don’t like this week for QBs:

Chad Henne against the Jets. Henne got his first win in his first NFL start but he won’t have it easy this week. The Dolphins will have to rely on the wild cat as the passing game has been awful. The team is generating just 138.2 PaYDs. The Jets are playing the pass well. They are allowing just 177.5 PaYDs and have given up only 1 PaTD. Not to mention they get back Calvin Pace who is very well rested from his suspension.

Eli Manning or David Carr against the Raiders. I know what you’re thinking, the Raiders are horrible and the Giants are going to pummel them. When your right but they won’t have to do much through the air. Considering even if Manning plays, they will keep it conservative to limit his foot movement and take advantage of the poor run defense of Oaklands that is allowing 146.2 RuTDs (26th) as compaired to the 210.5 PaYDs (11th) they allow. The Giants defense will take care of the rest.

Kerry Collins against the Colts. The Titans could be looking at an 0-5 start and with that the team could decide to go back to Vince Young for the rest of the season. They have been playing from behind most of the season which is where you don’t want to be with Colts who allow just 201.8 PaYDs (8th) and are holding opponents to 15.5 points per game (5th).

The matchups I don’t like this week for RBs:

Cedric Benson against the Ravens. Benson has been a surprise this season proving he has first round talent. This week he faces a very tough Ravens defense that is allow just 59.5 RuYDs (1st) and are holding teams to just 2.6 yards per attempt. Keep him on the bench.

Michael Turner against the 49ers. Turner is a good running back but the fact is the Falcons have struggled running the ball. They are averaging 92.5 RuYDs and have only have 2 RuTDs. The 49ers are allowing just 73.8 RuYDs (4th) and have yet to allow a RuTD. I am not suggesting benching Turner but don’t expect a big day.

Steven Jackson against the Vikings. After a tough game against the 49ers, the Vikings come to make it another hard week. The Rams are in serious trouble as they are averaging just 6 points a game. Jackson has yet to score a TD and it won’t happen again this week as the Vikings are another defense that has yet to allow a rushing TD. The Vikings are allowing just 89.5 RuYDs (9th).

Good luck to everyone in week five.

Cheers!

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