First let me comment on what a pleasure to draft last night in the first league of 2014 in the Pros vs Joes Challenge. No major draft problems and the new FFPC software worked like a charm. Of course I did due diligence by playing in a few FFPC Draft Expert (DE) leagues in the weeks leading up to this grand event.
The 2014 Pros vs Joes Challenge is sponsored by the FFPC and they have given SIX Main Event Entries for the 2015 Fantasy Football Players Championship (a $1825 value) to the league winners of the PvJ Challenge. Thanks for giving to the community. I say this as a Joe has won the competition every year since its 2010 start.
I have to say the competition in this league was pretty intense. There was some side chatter much not as much as usual. Someone asked about side wagers (there usually is some side bets-like $50 towards the best team participating in the wager) but I did not see any takers. I started to reply but got caught in a video chat with my family from the U.S and forgot to follow up.
I did not expect much to slip by me and make it back to me the next round on the short side (odd rounds going to even rounds where Dan Hendrickson (no relation) and Lou Tranquilli waited. Nothing made it through them back to me!
The Joes were as expected strong drafters. They know the format and have much experience in the FFPC format which highlights 1.5 PPR for TEs, active scoring (TDs for KR and PR count) and 2 flex positions.
Here is my team from the 10th spot:
1.10 AJ Green-WR CIN/4 ( I thought a WR-WR or WR-TE start would be strong. I planned on that)
2.03 Marshawn Lynch-RB SEA/4 (I thought Gronk/B Marshall and either Arian Foster or Lynch would be available. They all were except Foster who went to The Dilly Bars before me. I have Gronk as the TE2 and 6th overall but I could not pull the trigger on him here. My mantra of "draft safe early" kept ringing in my ears. Marshall (WR5, overall 14th) was the safe pick. Start WR-WR with two top 5 WRs. I wish I had done that. Instead I went with Lynch who is my RB7 (13th overall). I think SEA will run him into the ground knowing he will not be around next year. I hope so.
3.10 Reggie Bush-RB DET/9 (I had hoped Zac Stacy (RB15, 28 overall) would be here. He was but so was Bush (RB12, 23 overall). I think Reggie is good value here late in the third. DET should run the ball more and in a DE format I get the great games with no risk.
4.03 Zac Stacy-RB STL/4 (A gift. I was planning on Witten here but Stacy fell in my lap and I now have 3 starting RBs. So much for the WR-WR start. I am not too concerned about Tre Mason stealing touches this year. Maybe TDs as a GL Vulture but not enough to drop a starting RB to the 4th round. Not crazy about both Lynch and Stacy on the same bye week but the value in the 4th trumps that.
5.10 Jason Witten-TE DAL/11 (I was hoping Trent Richardson would fall to me here but Team Beef took him before me. Is it me or are all of my players falling a round later to me. Witten (TE4, 33 overall) is a perennial top 5 TE who is undervalued every year. Yes some games he stays in and blocks (especially when the OL is hurting) but other times he catches 22 balls. In a TE 1.5 PPR that is a lot of points. Again in E format I do not have to decide when to start or sit him, the computer does it automatically. I am hoping Greg Olsen who I love this year makes it around the corner to me.
6.03 Vernon Davis-TE SF/8 (RATS! Lou takes Olsen. I have no doubt Dan Hendrickson would have taken him if Lou passed on him. As for Davis (TE7, 58 overall), I am not too worried about a holdout and again I can let the computer pick the big games for Davis. And if the two Top TEs go off the same week one can be one of my two flex players.)
7.10 Steve Jackson-RB ATL/9 (I panicked and missed SJAX (RB25, 49 overall) in the 6th who I had ahead of V. Davis. Jackson made it back to me! My fourth starting RB. Now I have some flex players too. Unfortunately Jackson is on the same bye week as Bush. But if the TEs can flex that week and I get some WR help at flex too I should be OK. I try and get all my starters on different bye weeks or close to it. I hate having 3 starters (AJGreen, Lynch and Stacy) on the same bye week. Arg! I am hoping for one more year for Steven and an improved OL and healthy Julio Jones may give ATL more rushing opportunities.
8.03 Dwayne Bowe-WR KC/6 ( Glad to see #11 and #12 go QB and allow me to reach to get Bowe (WR32, 95 overall). He has dedicated himself to this year and I need a starting WR bad. DE helps offset some of the bad games. I still need to stockpile WRs (which I do in DE formats).
9.10 Fred Jackson-RB BUF/9 (I am beginning to hate week 9 too. I may regret not taking Christine Michael (RB SEA) here. Dave Gerczak asked me about it later on The High Stakes Fantasy Football Hour. But honestly my philosophy is to win it all and swing for the fences-which is what FJax does for me here if he hits. When the FFPC offered their 2015 Main Event Entries as prizes that really made me think about how to play the PvJ. I used to want to finish respectable but now I want to either finish first or die trying. 2nd or 3rd place does not mean anything to me. Fred Jackson (RB33, overall 74) could make or break this team.
10.03 Riley Cooper-WR PHI/7 (WR35-lots to love for Cooper as what are the chances Jeremy Maclin stays healthy all year long?)
More of the PvJ "Hong Kong Phooey" 21 July Draft tomorrow!
Fantasy Football Basics: The Ultimate "How to" Guide for Beginners available ($10.95) at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/0982428634