Ask Papa Weimer Fantasy Football Know-It-All Aug 09

You got questions? I still got answers. These are a couple of the questions my over-confident nephew answered in his email section. Well listen up fellas, because these are the real answers. I’m the king of Q&A, just like Salma Hayek is the queen of T&A. I’m old and Dirty, so what?
Papa Weimer

Drop me your Fantasy Questions @

There’s this thing I keep hearing about called the sophomore jinx. I understand that Cadillac Williams had a tough year in his 2nd season, but is that really something that I should worry about with guys like Joseph Addai, Laurence Maroney, Reggie Bush, Maurice Jones Drew, Marques Colston, and the quarterback triplets? (Leinart, Young, and Cutler) – Willard LeValley in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Don’t believe in jinxes and shit like that, unless a dude is on the cover of Madden (cough, cough – even old people like me believe in that damned curse – watch out Vince Young fans) jinxes are for those wanting to make a reason for a player struggling. Caddy struggled because his offensive line rarely was healthy, he didn’t have a quarterback to keep defenses honest, and the QB they had out there for most of the games was Bruce Gradkowski. Michael Clayton had a sophomore slump… that he never awoke from. It wasn’t as much of a bad sophomore year as it was a very lucky first season. Larry Fitz had a good 2nd year, as did Roy Williams, as did Mark Clayton, and so on and so on. Some guys struggle, and some do well, but it has nothing to do with their years in the league, unless we’re talking about 30 year old running backs. I expect a couple of the kids you listed to struggle in 2007, because that’s what happens, out of nowhere, or because of reasons like I listed with Caddy, kids struggle. However, I’d love to have a team full of the roster you listed, as most of those guys will have very good seasons in their 2nd year.

My league has been converted into a keeper league in which you can keep 3 players that you drafted last season after Round 3. But, you lose 2 spots ahead of where you selected that player last season. For example, I picked Matt Leinart in the 13th Round last season, if I choose to keep him, I give up an 11th pick this season. Is keeping Leinart for an 11th round pick a good idea? I know value can be had in waiting until later to select a quarterback, but I feel I could get my starter out of the way by keeping Matt, and focus on RBs with my later pick. Thoughts?- Brian in Houston, Texas.

First and foremost, I think that is a great idea for a keeper league. That allows for the big name guys to remain in the draft year in and year out, while you get rewarded most for making brilliant future picks later in the draft. The best of both worlds. You young whipper-snappers – so much creativity these days. As for Matt, yes, I think Matt is at least great value in Round 11. I’m not a huge quarterback fan, but of all 3 of the triplets, I think he has the highest floor. Lucky Lester says Cutler, but I like Matt in Arizona. I don’t know if I’d keep him as your main #1 starter. If you can get a high 2nd tier guy, like Phillip Rivers, Big Ben, or Matt Hasselbeck a little later on draft day – go ahead and pick one up, that way you’ll have two solid options to choose from at QB. However, I’m with you Brian, go with RBs and WRs early, and you’ll have a pretty stacked team, especially without the urge to select a QB high, knowing you have a solid rookie already signed on. As for the rest of your draft, try to draft guys like DeAngelo Williams and Michael Turner later on draft day, because both could be great keeper options next year, and you could set yourself up for years of dominance if you steal a couple of them.

I’m in a Dynasty league where I’m trying to get better at receiver without giving up my young core of RBs, Steven Jackson, LaDainian Tomlinson, and Michael Turner… I have Ahman Green, and I’m trying to move him. Do you think I could get a guy like Roy Williams, Marques Colston, TJ Houshmanzadeh, or Javon Walker for Green? What say you about a trade like that? My weak receiving corps begins and ends with Plaxico Burress, as Drew Bennett and Mushin Muhammad aren’t the best starting options. – Mikey Virts in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

If you can, try to get to your free agent board and pick up Devin Hester – he has a small chance to score enough fantasy points to warrant a start here and there, and maybe someone else will get excited about the game breaker, and you’ll be able to package him with someone else to get a better receiver. There’s a very small chance that he could end being a starting option. Everyone knows he has the talent. Now, he’ll just have to catch the ball. If he’s not available, and the pickings are slim on the wire, you’ll have to trade – because you’re right, that Top 3 is more of a Top 1 and two bench players. I know you keep your entire roster in Dynasty leagues, so Ahman Green’s age won’t excite many. But if the league is big, running backs are probably tough to come by, so I’d say you have a solid possibility of picking up a receiver in trade for the new Texan. I think any of the guys you listed would be an upgrade for you, and in a Dynasty, I’d rank them like this – Roy Williams, Marques Colston, TJ Houshmanzadeh, and Javon Walker. Go for the gusto, kid, trade Green to improve your receiving unit, but don’t be surprised if Ahman runs like a stud in Houston. That rushing attack is better than most people admit.

Is there a receiver that you think could come out of nowhere and finish as the best pass catcher in fantasy football? I’m looking for a top level guy that might sneak up on the Fantasy world. – Sue Mifflin in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

“Well my daddy left home when I was three, And he didn’t leave much to Maw and me, Just this old guitar and an empty bottle of booze, Now I don’t blame him cause he run and hid, But the meanest thing that he ever did, Was before he left, he went and named me Sue.” (Johnny Cash, great song) Well Sue, if you are a woman, I apologize greatly for stereotyping you into a man, but we don’t get many lady emails around these parts. As for you question, I have just the man you’re looking for. Lee Evans gets taken right around the 40th pick in your average draft, and about 14th among wide receivers. So, obviously, no one is expecting him to finish with the top point total in the league. However, JP Losman has improved every year – and many have said he looks even more confident this time around. Add Marshawn Lynch as a receiving threat, and less attention will be paid to Lee. But even with Lee gathering attention, he has a similar skill-set to Steve Smith. The Bills will have to score points to win football games, so giving their best scoring threat numerous chances to change games seems like a good idea. He could finish with 100+ catches, 14-16 TDs, and 1,500+ yards. He has that kind of stuff. He’s no guarantee, but unlike a lot of guys, he has the talent to finish atop the WR group.

I know busts are tough to pick because to be a bust, you should at least be a Top 30 player. But if you had to take a bust out of the Top 30 drafted players, who would he be? – Bass Collins in Mobile, Alabama.

Yeah, taking busts is definitely a make or break system. The thing is, you pick busts based on the hurdles they’ll have to jump through all year long to finish with a good season. Rather that be a poor offensive line, quarterback problems, or a lame duck coach, anything can influence decisions to beware of the bust factor. This season, there seem to be so many good players out there for the taking, that obviously a couple are going to bust like Caddy did last year. If I had to take one guy, I’d say be careful of selecting Rudi Johnson. Its not that Rudi is bad, hell, he’s probably one of the most consistent backs in fantasy football. But he has lots of mileage on those legs, and rarely does an NFL running back post four “1,300+ yard, 12 touchdown seasons in a row. In fact, I think only LT has done that. I love Rudi, but his yards per carry average slipped to 3.8 last season, which isn’t classy. Also, the Bengal workhorse lost Eric Steinbach in free agency. Ask Shaun Alexander – that makes life that much tougher. He’s been as consistent as anyone, but with a tough loss on his line, a passing offense that could use a better pass catcher out of the backfield, and 3 seasons in a row of big carries – this could be Rudy’s year to take a step backward. He’s getting selected 10th overall. I’d rather take my shot with Brian Westbrook, Travis Henry, or Ronnie Brown (all of which are usually selected after Johnson). But I still love Rudi – kid is a beast.

I’m in a dynasty league and am considering taking younger unproven players like Santonio Holmes, D.J. Hackett, Brandon Marshall, Ronald Curry, Dwayne Bowe, and Mark Clayton over guys like Joey Galloway, Hines Ward, Terry Glenn, and Donald Driver. I may be risking a little now for later – but what’s your opinion on that? – Craig Morton in Aukland, New Z.

WRs are way over valued and you can always put up a full 2-3 depending on your league line-up. As for Rooks versus Vets, it is a case by case basis, for example: Hines is #1 target in Pitt, Galloway is the #1 in TB and when healthy (big question this season for him) Driver is also a #1, and has the best numbers of the group. Glenn is a #2 who will continue to lose chances. The young guys you listed aren’t all in the same group. Clayton is by far the best of the young bunch, grab him above any of the 3 older guys. You could make the same argument for Holmes based on his 800+ yard rookie season. Most of the old guys have as much (or as Little) merit as the youngsters Holmes, Hackett, Curry and Bowe. A hot Rookie can Explode on a Season …But it is Rare at WR, Moss didn’t get “Hot” for 2 full seasons. And most struggle early, even if they have solid numbers in the end. Boldin and Larry Fitz are exceptions – both played well off the bat. In Fantasy Football, WRs can be picked up during a season and the value of these guys changes every year as to who is in top 5, top 20, and so on. Other than the top 10 they all are the about the same – It’s a Crap shoot and WRs are snake Eyes if you try to build a Team around them.

I’m in a league where quarterbacks get the same bonuses for long touchdown passes as RBs and WRs do for rushing and receiving scores. Don’t you think Vince Young is a poor option for this kind of format? – Big Don in Mt. Vernon.

Believe that! VY Jelly is a very high risk – high reward pick, with an emphasis on risk. And that’s in a normal league where QBs get 4 points for passing TDs, and no bonuses. QB TDs are much longer than rushing TDs on average, so bonus points are better there. Plus, rarely does a RB break 12 TDs rushing, while even Rex Grossman tossed 23 TDs last season. VY Jelly is a great athlete, and a damn good leader of that football team in Tennessee, but he’s not a passer, yet. Don’t take Young as your starting quarterback in this league. He won’t slip that far, he’s way too hyped to drop very low, and I’d probably rather have Phillip Rivers, Jay Cutler, Matt Leinart, Big Ben, even Rex Grossman – the format you speak of kills the normally solid value a rushing quarterback has. Young will never have big passing yardage totals, and his TD passes will definitely stay under 20. He’s still one of the few players I’d pay extra just to watch him play. So, I don’t mean to “hate” as you youngsters claim.

Last Weeks Questions

Papa Weimer – **52 y/o – two open Heart surgeries and a nasty attitude**

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