Fantasy Football Update

Well, I took a few weeks off from blogging about my Fantasy teams. After impressive starts, my teams were winless through weeks 9-11 and in serious jeopardy of slipping out of the playoff hunt. While my Yahoo team turned things around to clinch a playoff spot in Week 12, my ESPN team kept me on the edge of my seat until week 13’s Monday Night showdown between Baltimore and Green Bay. Here’s how the fantasy regular season finished for the Prowlers and the Volcanoes.

PDX Prowlers 8-3-2, 3rd seed in the playoffs, Bort Football League

Six of the sixteen teams in this Yahoo league make the cut, so to do this well in spite of TWO frustrating ties was a pleasant surprise. Even more surprising perhaps is that I won so many games with such inconsistent production from my RB and WR positions. A Week 10 trade of DeSean Jackson brought me Ryan Grant, who has helped a bit. Luckily, the Prowlers have been carried by Drew Brees, Vernon Davis and the Philly Defense, so even modest production from RBs and WRs has usually been enough to put me over the top. Unfortunately, my first-round playoff matchup is against the 7-5-1 Well Hungarians, who in Week 9 handed me my worst loss of the season. My opponent’s potent core of  Brady, Gore and Andre Johnson face tougher defenses this time around, so a solid effort from my backs and wideouts should keep me in the game.

Vancouver Volcanoes 7-6, 5th seed in the playoffs, NFFL

After a 6-2 start, the Volcanoes dropped from division front-runner to win-and-you’re-in bubble team. I lost four matchups in a row, two of which were heart-breakingly close. This cold streak had me less than optimistic entering my week 13 matchup against the Viking-heavy Portland Pimps. A loss would have tied me with the Pimps and at least one other team at 6-7, with none of the tie-breakers going my way. With Michael Turner out, and many of my matchups looking weak, I knew a desperation play was in order. Not trusting the Colts D vs. Tennessee or the Skins D vs. New Orleans, I played the matchups and snagged Carolina’s D for their game vs. Tampa Bay. This move, combined with Ochocinco’s stellar play kept me slightly ahead through the day games. On Sunday night, Arizona kept the Vikings in check, but Peterson, Rice, Shiancoe and Longwell gave the Pimps a 17-point lead nonetheless.

My only chance for the playoffs was a win, and my only chance for a win was getting 18 points from my tight end, Jermichael Finley. Things were looking up when Finley put up 5 catches for 56 yards and a score in the first half. But as I sat one point behind, Mike Tirico announced that Finley had been taken to the locker room for x-rays on his knee. Fate is indeed a cruel mistress, and for me to get so close, only to lose, seemed unfathomably harsh. But Fate, I guess, also has a cruel sense of humor, as Finley returned in the third quarter to get me the 4-yard catch that I needed to win, and then added a second touchdown catch for good measure.

Thank goodness I had started Carson Palmer on Sunday. He only gave me 5 points, but Joe Flacco’s negative-8 point performance would have shot Finley’s effort in the foot and knocked me out of the playoffs. Instead, I advance to face the 8-5 Wyoming BallBusters in the first round. While I’d love to have Michael Turner back, I need him at full health, not hobbling off on a reinjured ankle like two weeks ago. My flex options (Breaston, Lee Evans, Ahmad Bradshaw and Shonn Greene) have all been shaky the last few weeks, so maybe it is time for another move. I’ll keep up the blog posts for as long as I remain in the playoffs.

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