Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 Super Bowl XLVII Commercials

After the phenomenal Super Bowl XLVII with the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens, John Harbaugh and his quarterback Joe Flacco overcame the surge — and the 34-minute blackout at the Superdome — to win the game 34-31.  With the San Francisco 49ers mismanaging the clock and Colin Kaepernick‘s inability to run a two-minute drill effectively, the Ravens scraped one out in the final minutes of the game.  After all that commotion, the commercials were much the same.  Close to the second half, the real commercials decided to show up, and with that, these are Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 selections for best Super Bowl XLVII commercials:

Oreo “Whisper Fight”

I enjoyed this one. Subtly funny.

M & M “Love Ballad”

What are friends for when you have friends like Ms. Chocolate

Taco Bell “Viva Young”

Not funny in a funny kind of way but charming in a Taco Bell kinda way.

Toyota RAV 4 “Wish Granted”

The Rock Milk “Morning Run”

Volkwagen “Get In. Get Happy.”

Minnesota people. Represent.  Not just about Harley Davidson motorcycles and bratwursts.

Bud Light “Journey”

I liked this one. Perhaps the voodoo dolls caused the power outage. Or not.

Deion Sanders NFL “Leon Sandcastle” 

Funny. Very funny. Kind of a jilt on Randy Moss, Terrell Owens and others.

Kia Motors “Hot Bots”

Kia Motors got double honors this Super Bowl.  I think the advertising people left Volkswagen and came here.

Kia Motors “Space Babies”

This one had lots of charm to it — and the babies faces were priceless as they rocketed to Earth.

This is Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 commercials for Super Bowl XLVII.  What do you think?  Do you agree?

 

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Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles: The End of an Era

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid gets handed a gameball in his last press conference as a head coach

It’s officially the end of an era for former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid with a devastating record of 4-12 for the 2012 regular season.   Eagles owner Jeff Lurie stood by his word as he bid Andy Reid farewell after an 8-8 record for the 2011 season.  For those fans clamoring that we should not have let Andy Reid go since he was the Eagles franchise most successful coach to date, the Eagles organization is still a business.  And if Jeff Lurie kept Andy Reid for another season as a coach or otherwise, Lurie would be made to be nothing more than a paper tiger at best and a pushover at worst.  In as much as some of us criticize Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder for being a pushover, Jeff Lurie would made to look much worse.

Former Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens and quarterback Donovan McNabb

Andy Reid became head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles on January 11, 1999.  It was not without criticism upon arrival in Philadelphia after he was lured from the Green Bay Packers. In 2000, the Philadelphia Eagles reached the playoffs with a 11-5 regular season record.  In 2001, the chain of playoff wins came.  With quarterback Donovan McNabb, running back Brian Westbrook and safety Brian Dawkins coming to maturity, the Philadelphia Eagles was the team to beat in the NFC East with conference championships in 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004.  In 2004, with the acquisition of wide receiver Terrell Owens, the Eagles were at this time the cream of the crop of the NFC East and decisively the NFL.  The Eagles made it to Super Bowl XXXIX but was ultimately defeated by Tom Brady and his New England Patriots 24-21.  Donovan McNabb simply cracked under pressure in this Super Bowl, and with the Eagles essentially without a functioning quarterback, the New England Patriots won.

Former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jeff Garcia on the Sports Illustrated cover

After the stream of successes prior to 2004, the wheels of the truck began to fall off in 2005 as the disputes between Terrell Owens, Donovan McNabb and David Akers tore apart the team in the locker room. In 2005, the Eagles ended with a regular season record of 6-10.  In 2006, with the season-ending injury to Donovan McNabb in October, backup quarterback Jeff Garcia took over the reigns and nearly led the Eagles to another Super Bowl after defeating the Carolina Panthers, the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins. However, as Jeff Garcia led them closer and closer to the Super Bowl, Donovan McNabb came out of the woodwork and became disruptive from the sidelines in a sense.  This antagonism ultimately led to Jeff Garcia being released — and Donovan McNabb as well.

In 2008, the Eagles made their way to the NFC Championship game whereupon they lost to the Cardinals 32-25. The Eagles traded Donovan McNabb to the Washington Redskins in 2009, and after McNabb’s departure, then backup quarterback Michael Vick was named starting quarterback in 2010.  Vick’s most notable game as a Philadelphia Eagle was the decimation of Donovan McNabb and his  Washington Redskins on the night of November 15, 2010. On that night, Michael Vick was unleashed as he had four passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns with a passer rating of 150.7.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick after another loss

After Michael Vick’s spectacular run in 2010, the wheels began falling off the truck again.  Most teamis had developed a gameplan for Vick’s weaknesses and tendencies as the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys both built sufficient defense gameplan templates the season before.  The other teams in the NFL basically followed suit, adjusting their templates as needed.  And with Michael Vick not holding much better himself in the 2011 and 2012 regular seasons, the Philadelphia Eagles demise was gradual and climaxed in this regular season with compounding losses with ridiculous amount of turnovers.

Juan Castillo as Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator

With the loss of defensive coordinator Jim Johnson on July 28, 2009, the Philadelphia Eagles defense never was the same.  Sean McDermott took over, but he could never build the Eagles defense as Jim Johnson could.  Soon, even he was released to the Carolina Panthers on January 5, 2011.  And with the acquisition of Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie in the 2011 season, it seemed like a recipe for success.  Perhaps under the traditional defense of Jim Johnson.  With Juan Castillo and his implementation of the Wide-Nine defense, the defense collapsed unto itself as there were no leaders, only highly-paid players.

Andy Reid should be remembered for the successes he bought to the Philadelphia Eagles organization.  With few notable candidates currently to fill the void, 2012 Maxwell Coach of the Year Penn State’s Bill O’Brien seems to be the leading candidate.  Quite possibly, in my opinion, the former Chicago Bears Lovie Smith would be a potential option as well.  In either case, the options are not particularly tempting.  Reid went over his head with the promotion of Juan Castillo as a defensive coordinator, the firing of Sean McDermott and the wholesale acquisition of free agents. These are perhaps what did him in as a head coach.  Most likely, he will be acquired by the Arizona Cardinals as Ken Whisenhunt was recently fired.  A change of scenery will do him good.  Will it bring him as much success with the Philadelphia Eagles?  Perhaps, but I remain skeptical.

Philadelphia Eagles Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson: 2010 Year in Review and 2011 Outlook and Beyond

2010 Year in Review

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson was fairly efficient and productive during the 2010 regular season despite the quarterback situation.  In 2010, he had a total of 1,047 yards on 47 receptions and 6 touchdowns for the season.  He was ranked 12th among wide receivers in total yardage, and tied for 29th in touchdowns among wideouts.  However, his prime achievement was that he led the league in average yardage per catch with 22.5.

During the regular season, Jackson had erratic production at times, but his production improved as quarterback Michael Vick took the helm.  Earlier on, however, in the game against the Detroit Lions with quarterback Kevin Kolb at the helm, he had 135 yards, a touchdown and a stunning 33.8 average yards per catch.  In the following game, he also had a great game against the Jacksonville Jaguars with 153 total receiving yards, a touchdown and 30.6 average yards per catch.  The following three games were downers for him as Eagles running back LeSean McCoy took over as the primary offensive weapon.  Against the Indianapolis Colts, DeSean Jackson blossomed again with 109 receiving yards, a touchdown and 15.6 average receiving yards per catch and was one of the top performers of the game.  In the decimation of the Washington Redskins 59-28, he had 98 yards and a touchdown on two receptions and a stunning 49.0 average receiving yards per catch.  Again, he was one of the top performers of the game, and Jackson essentially set the tone for the rest of the game after his 88-yard catch in the opening of the first quarter.  Then the tides began to turn as defenses began to adjust to Michael Vick, and Jackson’s production went down tremendously until the Dallas Cowboys game.  Jackson rose to the occasion with 210 receiving yards and a touchdown and another stunning 52.5 average receiving yard per reception.  As quarterback Michael Vick began breaking down physically during the close of the season and other personal factors discussed next, DeSean Jackson’s production fell down as well.

2011 Outlook and Beyond

Compared to his 2009 season, DeSean Jackson was admirably comparable.  He was ranked 12th in total receiving yards during the 2009 regular season.  Additionally, he was tied for 10th was 9 total touchdowns and ranked second in average receiving yards with 18.6.  He did show remarkable improvement in average yardage per catch, but he fell somewhat in the number of touchdowns.

With the 2011 season perhaps coming, as the collective bargaining agreement is coming into its final development, DeSean Jackson’s contract has expired.  With the tantrum thrown after the Philadelphia Eagles loss to the Chicago Bears and his unwillingness to mesh with coach Andy Reid, whether DeSean Jackson will have contract extension after the lockout ends remains to be seen.  Potentially, the Eagles should, but they might not have enough to cover Michael Vick’s contract. Should Jackson be traded, the Philadelphia Eagles will lose a valuable cog in their potent offense.  Unfortunately, DeSean Jackson does have Drew Rosenhaus as an agent, and Jackson may become another Terrell Owens, loaded with talent but blinded by money.

2011 Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Prospect

During the 2011 fantasy football season, wide receiver DeSean Jackson should be ranked a high-end WR2 to a solid WR1 if Jackson intends on staying with the Philadelphia Eagles.  However, the limitation is by his teammate Jeremy Maclin who may have become the primary wideout in the Eagles offensive scheme.  Perhaps a more severe limitation will be the second half of the Philadelphia Eagles schedule where the opponents become much more physical and potentially cause serious injury to Eagles star quarterback of the 2010 season, Michael Vick.  Finally, the final limitation may be another team.  Which team is an interesting question, but I imagine a pass-happy team like the Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers or another can definitely benefit from a wide receiver like him.  Depending on the team, however, his production could fall into solid to high-end WR2 status which could hurt fantasy football players intending on drafting a solid wideout early.

The Shortened 8: Top 10 Drafts for Fantasy Football Wide Receivers for 2011-12

With this potentially abbreviated season coming up, this is the list of potential fantasy football wide receivers for the upcoming season.  However, for now, it should be taken more of a guide, a speculative list for preparation of a draft.  Unlike running backs, wide receivers don’t decline much over time, but their value will and vary tremendously from season to season.  They may be the primary receiver one season and replaced the next.  Ask New York Giants Mario Manningham and Green Bay Packers Donald Driver.

Must-Haves

  • Philadelphia Eagles DeSean Jackson.  He is still in an explosive offense, and with a shortened season, he should be able to do well to be a solid WR1 to high-end WR1 in most games, if Michael Vick stays in the pocket — and healthy.
  • Indianapolis Colts Reggie Wayne.  If this indeed a shortened season, he should be considered a high-end WR2 wideout.  He should have big games occasionally, and his numbers overall should be sufficient enough for you to edge out the competition.  And potentially their quarterback Peyton Manning won’t have to throw to a crippled roster like last season.
  • Atlanta Falcons Roddy White.  If he can keep himself focused, he should be a WR1 going forward.  His major issue is his self-discipline on the field, not the talent surrounding him.
  • New England Patriots Deion Branch. He’s a solid WR2 in most instances who may have a bigger upswing than Wes Welker perhaps.  But the debate on which wide receiver of the Patriots is most useful is still on the books.
  • Detroit Lions Calvin Johnson.  He still has talent and speed left in his engine.  He should remain a mid to high-end WR2 in most games with moments of WR1 brilliance.  The return of Javhid Best as a healthy running back should help relieve some pressure mid-field.
  • Green Bay Packers Greg Jennings. This is the first season where he exploded as he took primary receiver duties.  He should continue exploding into the next couple of seasons at least, pending any serious injury.
  • Philadelphia Eagles Jeremy Maclin.  A high-end WR2 developing into a low-end WR1.  He’ll have his good days and his bad days, but he should pan out as a good addition to any roster.
  • New York Giants Hakeem Nicks. Same as Jeremy Maclin but for the New York Giants instead.  He’s also a tad more consistent.  He puts up excellent numbers despite having a QB2 behind him by name of Eli Manning.
  • Kansas City Chiefs Dwayne Bowe.  Whereas I am a bit less optimistic about Brandon Lloyd, I am quite optimistic that he should continue his progress from last season.  He has a talented quarterback by name of Matt Cassel with a substantive running back in Jamaal Charles.
  • Houston Texans Andre Johnson.  He and his quarterback do have talent.  With their running back Arian Foster behind them, they should have been better offensively than they produced last season.  However, Matt Schaub was a bit inconsistent last season, and it costed them.  If Texans quarterback Matt Schaub can keep his head in the game, Andre Johnson should easily rise above into the top three wideouts of 2011-12 season.

Avoid

  • Cincinatti Bengals Terrell Owens.  With him in limbo still, although he still has some talent left in him, I would potentially avoid him since he may backfire.
  • Tennessee Titans Randy Moss.  Yeah, him.
  • Tennessee Titans Kenny Britt.  Yeah, him too.
  • Carolina Panthers wide receivers.  With such a defensive-minded crew, in terms of coach Ron Rivera and defensive coordinator Sean McDermott, I expect more of a ground-and-pound attack going forward and low-scoring games by the Panthers. Think New York Jets, and you’ll get the picture.
  • Minnesota Vikings wide receivers.  Until they get their quarterback situation pressed out, they are a high-risk gamble.  I won’t deny that Percy Harvin or Sidney Rice aren’t talented, but with no one proficient as a quarterback to throw it to them, each game would be nothing more than wide receiver football drills.
  • Washington Redskins wide receivers.  I am still not willing to gamble with Rex Grossman as my quarterback with consistent production, even in a short season. Perhaps others might.

Potential X-Factors

  • Buffalo Bills Steve Johnson.  The Bills have still have a long way to go before they reach elite level, but they are slowly building the elements needed to become competitive at least.
  • Denver Broncos Brandon Lloyd.  Although he was first in yardage production last year, I won’t hold my breath to do it again with a shortened season, different coach and different quarterback.
  • Plaxico Burress.  I wouldn’t expect no higher than solid WR2 numbers from him.  He doesn’t have the talent of some of the younger receivers out on the field.  Minimally, he’s worth a bench seat on the roster and could be trade bait coming into the fantasy football playoffs, wherever Burress may land up.
  • Cincinnati Bengals Chad Ochocinco.   Before you bash me over the head with this wide receiver, bear in mind that he will have Terrell Owens out of his way this upcoming season. He could potentially put up WR1 numbers and minimally at least solid WR2 numbers.
  • Dallas Cowboys Miles Austin.  He has sufficient talent and skill himself.  Whether head coach Jason Garrett chooses to exploit that talent with Tony Romo potentially returning remains to be seen.  I also question whether Tony Romo will actually become a better quarterback when it counts — or otherwise implode again.
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mike Williams.  I like how Tampa Bay has improved last season.  With running back LeGarrette Blount‘s athleticism and quarterback Josh Freeman’s consistency and accuracy, he could have a productive season.  Whether it’s WR1 numbers, I still remain skeptical.  He should be worth a WR2 with some upside to him.

Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Green Bay Packers: Super Bowl XLV Post-Game Analysis

This is one crazy battle of defenses with their stars Green Bay Packers Clay Matthews and Pittsburgh Steelers Troy Palomalu and their balanced offenses with their star wide receivers Green Bay Packers Greg Jennings and Pittsburgh Steelers Mike Wallace for the Super Bowl. Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers is fighting for his Super Bowl ring, and Pittsburgh Steelers Ben Roethlisberger is fighting for his third ring.  It is also the time of millions of dollars spent on a few minutes of commercial time for Super Bowl sponsors.  And lastly, it is the time for Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers and football fans all around the world to enjoy lots of food, soda and alcoholic beverages. (And one final note, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones won’t be presenting the Vince Lombardi Trophy to his team in his stadium unfortunately.  For us Eagles fans and others around the nation, that is something to relish.)

Now to the post-game analysis of Super Bowl XLV at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas:

  • The fumble on the kickoff by Tramon Williams was a close one early first quarter for the Green Bay Packers.  Luckily, the Green Bay Packers recovered the ball.  Otherwise, this would have been a completely different ball game.
  • Donald Driver‘s 24-yard catch from Aaron Rodgers on their first drive in the first quarter was beautiful although the offense sputtered soon afterwards that drive.
  • The Pittsburgh Steelers defense harassed Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers early and often.  James Harrison ultimately caught up with Aaron Rodgers in the third quarter with a sack.
  • Jordy Nelson‘s 29-yard reception from Aaron Rodgers gave the Green Bay Packers at the close of the first quarter their first score of the game 7-0.
  • Green Bay Packers Pro Bowl safety Nick Collins interception of Pittsburgh Steelers Ben Roethlisberger returned for 37 yards and their second score in late first quarter to 14-0.  Wow.
  • Steelers Ben Roethlisberger’s late first quarter 18-yard rush was impressive.
  • Green Bay Packers cornerback Jarrett Bush’s interception in the last few minutes of the second quarter led to Greg Jenning’s 21-yard touchdown to bring the Green Bay Packers 21-3.
  • Ben Roethlisberger targeted Hines Ward for much of the last series of the second half and completed an 8-yard touchdown to bring the score to 21-10 Packers.
  • This was the half of injuries to the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers. Green Bay Packers Sam Shields and Charles Woodson left for the locker room for examination before the half.  Unfortunately, Charles Woodson suffered a collarbone injury and would not return.  On the opposite side of the ball, Steelers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders would not return as well.
  • Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was more effective into the half with a 134.6 quarterback rating on 2 touchdowns and 137 yards.  Meanwhile, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was less effective at 58.3 quarterback rating on 2 interceptions, a touchdown and 143 yards passing.
  • Interestingly enough, Green Bay Packers running back James Starks was more effective at 37 yards and 5.3 yards per carry into the half.  On the other hand, Steelers Rashard Mendenhall had 3o yards and 3.8 yards per carry.
  • Black Eyed Peas midnight rave halftime was interesting to say the least. Where’s a clothing malfunction when you need one?  On the bright side, Slash’s awesome guitar shredding  redeemed the show — a little bit. Remind me to gouge my eyes out next time — and not to watch any scheduled halftime shows on the NFL Network with the Black Eyed Peas anytime soon.
  • Early third quarter, the Pittsburgh Steelers relied on the run with the combination of Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman with Mendenhall rushing for a 8-yard touchdown for a 21-17 score.
  • Late third quarter, Steelers Shaun Suisham’s 52-yard field goal miss would have brought the score to within 1 point and was costly for this Super Bowl game.
  • After the recovered fumble of Rashard Mendenhall by linebacker Desmond Bishop on the 36-yard line of the Packers, Aaron Rodgers focused on Jordy Nelson again, but Greg Jennings got an 8-yard pass from Aaron Rodgers to bring the score to 28-17 early fourth quarter.
  • Middle of the fourth quarter, Ben Roethlisberger floated a 25-yard touchdown pass to Mike Wallace which was beautiful, and the score was brought closer to 28-25 via a successful 2-point conversion from Ben Roethlisberger’s lateral to Antwan Randle El.
  • Steelers coach Mike Tomlin‘s (with Ben Roethlisberger) burning of timeouts in the second half of the game is still about as bad as Andy Reid’s mishandling of challenges (and sometimes timeouts).
  • The 31-yard seam pass to Greg Jennings from Aaron Rodgers was fantastic late in the fourth quarter.  Unfortunately, Rodgers dipped in the pot once too much for Jordy Nelson, and the Packers had to settle for a field goal by Mason Crosby.
  • Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers had a stunning 111.5 quarterback rating for the Super Bowl on 3 touchdowns, no interceptions and 304 yards passing.
  • Running backs of both teams were both limited in the Super Bowl. Steelers Rashard Mendenhall had only 63 yards rushing, and Packers James Starks only had 52 yards rushing.
  • The receiving corps of both teams were the stars of the Super Bowl.  The Pittsburgh Steelers duo of Mike Wallace and Hines Ward had 89 yards receiving and 78 yards receiving respectively, and both had a touchdown in this game.  The Green Bay Packers tandem of Jordy Nelson and Greg Jennings had 140 yards receiving and 64 yards receiving respectively.  Nelson had a touchdown, but Jennings had two.

This was a game of turnovers recovered by both the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay packers defenses and continuously shifting momentum. Green Bay Packers moved the ball well in the first half, but the Pittsburgh Steelers moved the ball better in the second half. In the closing minutes of the game, Ben Roethlisberger attempted a two-minute drill, but he rushed his passes with the Green Bay defense closing upon his receivers. The Green Bay Packers won Super Bowl XLV with the score of 31-25 over the Pittsburgh Steelers.  The Vince Lombardi Trophy is returning to the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field, and Aaron Rodgers has earned his first Super Bowl ring and a well-deserved Super Bowl MVP (with a brand new Camaro).

Now that the Super Bowl is over, football fans can await the drama of the off-season, including the labor negotiations. If these don’t entertain, I’m sure we can hear from some of the diva wide receivers of the league like Terrell Owens or Chad Ochocinco Johnson tweeting their pressing concerns. We can also look forward to the Arena Football League starting March 11, and this will temporarily satiate the football craving, if the NFL lockout occurs.  And then the playoffs for the NHL will begin soon.  Lastly, the beginning of the NASCAR season starting this week in Daytona with the new rules and the newly paved three-wide racetrack.  All these should be great sporting events to follow.

Terrell Owens Wants to Join the New England Patriots: The Twitterland Shuffle

In the land of Twitter, Terrell Owens has suggested that he wants to become a New England Patriot.  Well, after the New England Patriots loss to the New York Jets, this may not be the time to push his idea.  The compounding of the loss to the New York Jets currently and with Terrell Owens reminding them of their past mistake with now Tennessee Titans Randy Moss, this idea won’t pass by coach Bill Belichick.

However, he still has talent.  This season, Owens had 983 yards receiving, 9 touchdowns and 13.7 yards per reception. He was also ranked 18th overall in receiving yardage, in the company of Philadelphia Eagles Jeremy Maclin and Chicago Bears Johnny Knox.

But his outlandish and rowdy behavior won’t sit well with either the Patriots locker room or especially, head coach Bill Belichick.  Since Owens has pissed the likes of the Philadelphia Eagles and the Cincinnati Bengals, this won’t go well on his resume either.  Terrell Owens can pipedream all he wants for now, but he may and should become nothing more than Randy Moss II in the future — a quiet decoy on the team.

Fantasy Football 2010 Season Finale: 11 Things I Learned This Season

With all of the fantasy football teams completing their seasons, it’s time to sum the things that I learned about this crazy season.

  1. Big names don’t necessarily produce big results. True, there were epic moments by Michael Vick, Terrell Owens and others, but quietly and silently, names like Brandon Lloyd, Matt Cassel and Peyton Hillis won games.
  2. Play matchups, but expect the unexpected. What logically should happen doesn’t always happen.
  3. An explosive offensive doesn’t necessarily mean that they remain one. The New England Patriots, the Tennessee Titans and the New York Giants early on this season were examples of this.
  4. The best defense doesn’t always remain that way. The Tennessee Titans defense suffered a collapse mid-season. The Chicago Bears defense suffered a collapse late season.
  5. This has been the season of injuries. My teams have changed complexion several times over this season, from running back heavy to wideout heavy to anything in-between.  I imagine other teams have changed as well.
  6. Indianapolis Colts Peyton Manning struggled later on this season, but he was without any wideouts other than Reggie Wayne. The Colts are still a better quality team than the New England Patriots when healthy, in my opinion.  However, the Patriots are a better balanced team. Peyton Manning should remain a top 3 quarterback into next fantasy football season.
  7. Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick is the best quarterback this season, but he needs a reality check in real life. He will be marked as among the first fantasy football quarterbacks this season.  But he will require a backup if he is in your roster due to his durability and his character.
  8. Great running backs can come in the oddest of places and the oddest of times.  Arizona CardinalsTim Hightower is such an example.  LeGarrette Blount of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is another.  Blount had demonstrated his explosiveness earlier in the year against the Cardinals, but it was not until the season’s end did he demonstrate his true running prowess.
  9. Don’t underestimate anyone from the Oakland Raiders, the Cleveland Browns, the Buffalo Bills or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  That is, until the end of the season…when the schedule becomes more difficult, and the team falls apart.
  10. Coaches really do impact the team greatly from the Dallas Cowboys to the Minnesota Vikings.  They change the offense, defense and morales of these teams often significantly.
  11. Late-season injuries can change the complexion of a fantasy football greatly, particularly a last-minute change in the Vikings game from Brett Favre to rookie Joe Webb.  Although Webb wasn’t elite during his game against the Philadelphia Eagles, he has shown, given time, that he could potentially become an elite quarterback in a couple of years.

Cincinnati Bengals Terrell Owens: Number 81 and Done…

The Cincinnati Bengals are in serious need of re-building from the ground up.  With Terrell Owens deciding to have knee surgery on Monday, he has officially put himself out of the Bengals locker room.  He will no longer partner with Chad Ochocinco, as the Bengals have decided not to resign Terrell Owens for next year.  Currently, Owens is ranked among the top six receivers in the NFL in yards and catches.  But that won’t do him any good while he’s recovering from surgery and without a contract for next season, if there is one.  Owens signed a one-year deal with the Bengals with a $2 million base salary prior to training camp of this season, and the Bengals have fulfilled their end of the agreement.  Again…Owen’s big mouth got him in trouble, as he was pointing at the coaching staff for their continuous losses and at least partially inclined the staff to suggest his departure from the Bengals team.

Now he’s without a team for next year. Again.  Unfortunately, this may put him in a tight spot, much like Randy Moss has currently with the Tennessee Titans.  Few teams may want him, but also quite a few may need him.  Perhaps the Seattle Seahawks, the Cleveland Browns or perhaps a reunion with his former quarterback Donovan McNabb somewhere.  Wouldn’t that be a sight to see? Donovan McNabb and Terrell Owens together again…but dreams can turn into nightmares for either of them.

Cincinnati Bengals Wide Receivers Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco: Fantasy Football X-Factors

This is a short public announcement.  Terrell Owens have been spectacular the last few games, until he met the New York Jets. He had 3 receptions for 17 yards.  To date, Owens has put up 914 yards, 8 touchdowns and averaging 14.1 yards per reception. Meanwhile, his partner Chad Ochocinco had 4 receptions for 41 yards in his game against the Jets.  And to date, Ochocinco has 628 yards, 4 touchdowns and averaging 11.6 yards per reception.  Carson Palmer is playing hurt, and his skill has been on the decline this season.  With the exceedingly tough schedule coming up against the New Orleans Saints and their swarming defense, Pittsburgh Steelers and their stiff defense, the Cleveland Browns and San Diego Chargers, the duo of  Batman and Robin should have less and less success in the upcoming weeks.  Coming into the fantasy football playoffs, potentially both should become WR3s at best and waiver wire fodder at worst, despite their skill sets.

Cincinnati Bengals Quarterback Carson Palmer: Fantasy Football X-Factor

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer has at least 2 touchdowns in the last six consecutive games, and the team has the 8th best passing offense.  His yardage totals have been below 300 yards generally.  He can thank his veteran receivers Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco for that much yardage.  However, his running back Cedric Benson has only been sporadically helpful, like against the Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which doesn’t help alleviate double-coverage among his receivers.  However, against the current game against the Buffalo Bills, he should be able to assist. Carson Palmer still has the skills to deliver the ball, but despite the talent, he hasn’t been able to capitalize. In the six consecutive losses, it should be noted that all these games have been lost by a touchdown or less.  Palmer and his team just need the will to win these upcoming games.  Carson Palmer has been a solid QB2 so far in the season, but he shouldn’t be taken more than that.