Okay, there are a couple ways to look at the Saints – either A, they are unbelievably lucky – we’re talking Lady Gaga is a millionaire type stuff here, rabbit feet wearing horse shoes with gold potted end of the damn rainbow shoe laces twisted and woven with all the 4-leaf clovers in the universe lucky. Or B, every team they play is unlucky and suffering from all the bad karma that should be going to Yankee fans. Like I said, there are two ways to look at the Saints. I choose to be a good man, a well rounded individual, and look at them from both perspectives – it’s tough, but I manage. But no matter which camera I peer into, I still see the same thing – my least favorite team of all time.
Yeah, any team that kicks a ball out of bounds with a returning player running out of bounds to catch it that gets bobbled but lands 3 inches from the sideline (headed out of bounds) and bounces back right into a players arms that just happened to be running then diving at the speed of light but still managed to grab the ball is a team I just can’t buy into. They might be using magic.
So I hate them, that’s clear, but here I am betting on them. Why? Because they are also good. Better to be lucky than good, they say, what about the luckiest and still good? Evilness – that’s all there is to it.
Without Reggie Bush, things change for the Saints – sure, more than people know. Reggie opens up so much for this team, which is probably why, despite being the team’s #2 RB, they kept him for nearly 10 million bones. Well, Reggie is out, but this team is still good. I don’t think the Falcons, who are improved defensively this season, can put the kind of pressure on Brees to limit his downfield scan-time.
Lord knows I’ll be rooting like all gettyup for the Falcons to pull one out on the road, but unless the Saints tumble from their lucky 7′s spot at the slot machine,that’s not going to happen. Matt Ryan will get plenty of rush from the Saints’ blitz-happy system, and New Orleans will get triple-deflection interception-touchdowns that will be that.
The Saints haven’t played well offensively yet – so you can bet your balls that’s going to change sooner or later – my predictions is sooner.
My fantasy teams are getting kicked around in the first couple weeks of the season, but hey, that’s okay, I’ve seen it happen before and I’ve come out alive. Back in 1989 I started the season 0-6 before climbing back like a damned mountain goat and taking the title from the unsuspecting Carl’s in my fantasy league. These days there are just more dinks to take players from, and I suspect you should. Here’s some advice going forward…
Vernon in Tennessee got a trade offer, “Ok I got another tough one. I have Frank Gore and I have just been offer a trade for him for MJD. I like them both but MJD isn’t looking to good and Gore looks great. What do you think?”
Don’t trade Gore, i love MJD, but I think Gore will be great all year. I don’t know how the Seahawks bundled up the big running back from San Francisco, but I don’t expect many teams to duplicate that task this season. Frank runs real hard, he’s going to catch at least 60 balls, and if he stays healthy he’s a lock for the Top 5 – the only way you get rid of a guy like that is if someone offers you AP or Chris Johnson in return. Listen, I am one of MJD’s biggest fans, always have been, but he is in a bad spot in Jacksonville. I keep waiting for them to get better, stronger, more efficient in the running game – but it just hasn’t happened. I don’t see them being ahead too often this year, and MJD hasn’t been healthy this season. It’s hard to get healthy when you are carrying a load every week. I think you’re in safe hands with Frank – and I’d stay there.
P-Witty in Bean Town says, Jimmy Claussen is now the guy in Carolina, so I’m thinking about trading away DeAngelo because I expect a roller coaster season with the rookie calling the shots, who should I target?
To answer your question of who to target, here are some guys I like that might have DeAngelo value in some circles… LeSean McCoy (think he’ll have a Brian Westbrook type season), Maurice Jones-Drew (I still like Drew, and think he should get it going soon, and he’s scored less than D-Lo, so someone might be freaking out), Pierre Thomas (a good guy to target right now before he has a full week as the lone-star running back in New Orleans) – those are three guys I like to add because either A- some owners don’t trust what they’ve done so far (McCoy) or B- I think they’ll be much better than they’ve been.
But to be honest, I think you should keep Williams and either trade him when his value is higher, or just ride him out. I actually think DeAngelo will be better with Claussen. Why? Because with Claussen, the stupid Panthers’ play caller, whomever he may be, will pull his head out of his ass and run the ball more. They did it last year when Moore came in to replace Delhomme, and they’ll do it this year, too. They’ve been passing the ball way too much when the game is close. I would probably wait to trade Williams – at least see what he does this week – even against a very tough Cincinnati defense. But I guess if you can get good value, he does go up against a couple tough defenses the next couple weeks – I’ve just always thought the Panthers could run on anyone if they would just call run plays. With Claussen, I think they will.
Dan in Indianapolis writes, “I’m thinking of trading Anquan Boldin and Brandon Jackson to get Roddy White, what do you think?”
I actually like Anquan Boldin – I think he will be solid all year, but if you’re worried about Flacco’s first couple weeks, I understand the trade. I just think Joe will figure it out soon, here, and light up the airways – remember, this team actaully threw a lot last year, and I think they’ll keep chucking it. I just don’t know if I’d give up Jackson (who is currently the starter on a good offense) and Boldin, for White, who has his ups and downs as well. But I’d rather have White than Boldin, if just by a little bit. So if all you’re looking for is an upgrade, I think you’re getting it.
Dave in Minnesota asks, “Will Demaryius Thomas, Earl Bennett, Tolbert, Josh Morgan, or Brandon Lloyd be worth picking up?”
I really like Aromoshadu, and I think last week’s benching was a bit of a heads up for him, more than a season long thing – so I would think he’ll be back in the swing of things soon in chicago, making Earl Bennett undesirable – but I could be wrong. LLoyd is okay, but he’s trumped by the upside of his young teammate. Thomas is my favorite of the bunch you mentioned. Josh Morgan is an interesting case, I’ve always liked the Virginia Tech guy (i think that’s where he’s from) and he could be good- but he’s going to be in a run first offense with at least two receiving options ahead of him (Vernon Davis, Crabtree) and three if you count Gore. I like Tolbert, always have, not sure how many looks he’ll get but he runs like everyone wishes Brandon Jacobs would run. As far as handcuffs go, he’s one I would actually own, because he’ll produce something every week and some weeks could be huge. I would rank D. Thomas as #1 of the guys you listed.
Billy from Philadelphia writes, “Hey Papa, last year you gave some good advice about survivor/suicide picks – I know it’s early, but better early than late for your advice, who are your top 3 picks this week? (That way I will surely have an option).”
New England at home against Buffalo is stealing candy from a baby. The Patriots are always a good bet coming off a loss, especially one where they were so useless in the 2nd half (like last week). But this is even better. While the Bills do have a nice secondary to match up with Moss, Welker, and the boys, there is no way they score more points than the Patriots. Free survivor pick of the week… New England.
Minnesota at home against the Lions – If you haven’t taken the Vikings yet, and you probably haven’t (because you’re still alive) I think they are a great bet to turn it around this week. Heck, even if they played like they have the last two weeks, I still think they walk away with a win against Detroit. And I expect them to play better. It’s ballsy, but hey, what are you if you’re not that?
Cincinnati on the road at Carolina – that’s my only road pick. I like to stay away from road games in survivor, if only because fewer road teams win, it’s just the way it is. But I can’t see how Carolina would win this one. They have a bad defense and Cincinnati has a good one. They have a rookie QB and a coach that hates running the ball when he should. If you’re in a bind, I like the Bengals to oust the Panthers.