Friday, November 06, 2015

Limerick Friday LXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXVI: The ‘Fins Are Who We Thought They Were, Plus The Mets Kick Away A Title

When it looked like a franchise awake
The Cheatriots exposed them as a fake
Decimated a feeble attack
With turnovers and sack after sack
Hard to overcome the loss of Cam Wake

Another bipolar misogynist
Greg Hardy to the top of the list
Unstable to be kind
But Jerry Jones knows his mind
If Dallas had a real fan, they’d be pissed

Pass-outs are causing a bicker
And State got a participation sticker
Only took seven weeks, you see
To throw to the best tight end in the ACC
Should someone tell them now they need a new kicker?

Every week another blown call
The NFL, in college, and all
We’re talking about refs shitting the bed
And not of great games instead
Have to be able to challenge flags in football

A blown opportunity gone by
As the Mets blew a World Series try
Late-inning leads blown three times
Cespedes and Murphy had MIA crimes
Great season after you’ve had a good cry

Friday, October 23, 2015

Limerick Friday LXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXV: The Amazin’s Race Into The Fall Classic, Plus The Fins May Have Found An Identity At Long Last

Answered all kinds of queries
Continued Cubbie curse theories
But at the end of the day
You just have to say
The Metsies are back in the Series

Inherited a lot of money
Thinks racism is kinda funny
Bankruptcy his way of life
Ignorance wielded like a knife
Can only say “Shut the fuck up, Donny

With his own personal style
Been hitting the ball a mile
With every bat flip whirled
It’s Daniel Murphy’s world
Best performance I’ve seen in a while

Recruiting trips with refills
Rang up huge bar bills
Call plays while he was drunk
His own program he sunk
Steve Sarkisian, go fix your ills

Got physical for a change
Which looked kinda strange
The Dolphins setting the tone
The Titans they did own
Can they stay in this physical range?

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Halfway Home: Promising Scooters Squad Paces The League In Points

After adopting a bit of a shift in strategy during this year’s draft, I came away highly optimistic about my haul. Halfway through the season, that positive outlook has proven to be well-founded.

The Scooters sit at 4-2 at the midway point, and even though the squad should be 5-1, it’s hard to argue too much with that record. Perhaps more importantly, we are the leading point-scorer in my league by a healthy margin, which bodes well the rest of the way. Considering I’m stuck in easily the best division in my league, we are in about as good a position as possible for the stretch run (famous last words).

Here’s how each position group on The Scooters has fared to date …


Aaron Rodgers has been steady, though the customary colossal games have been few and far between. With Jordy Nelson out for the year, the long-distance strikes just haven’t been there, replaced by more of a controlled, short passing game. However, you have to think those explosive games are still out there to be had as the best quarterback in the game progresses with a young receiving corps. And let’s face it: he stills ranks fourth in our league in points among QBs.

In the move of the season to date, I parlayed surprising Tyrod Taylor into a deal for DeAndre Hopkins, who has been a scoring machine at receiver. I’ve replaced Taylor with first Ryan Mallett and now Brian Hoyer, in hopes of pairing Hopkins with his signal-caller during Rodgers’s upcoming bye week.


Mark Ingram has been about what I anticipated before the year (No. 8 in RB scoring in my league), Legarrette Blount has been somewhat less than I had hoped (but seems to be finding his role, as evidenced by his No. 10 ranking in RB points), and Chris Ivory (No. 7 in RB points) has been even more than I had predicted. I’ve leaned extensively on Ivory and Ingram to carry the load, but my fourth RB, Ryan Mathews, produced big-time in a spot start and seems to need more touches in Philly, while Blount could be more than a flex as the season progresses. At the end of the day, having three backs in the top 10 in RB points considering my draft approach has to be considered a win.


My wideouts early on were solid, with room to grow, in youngsters Amari Cooper and Jarvis Landry. As I anticipated, Cooper has quickly established himself as a bonafide go-to receiver, developing a strong rapport with Derek Carr and putting up impressive numbers (No. 17 in WR points) that should result in more touchdowns as the season goes on. Landry has in some ways been a victim of a pathetic Dolphins team and a regressing Ryan Tannehill, but he is still getting tons of touches. The coaching change in Miami should pay big dividends and open some space for Landry (No. 19 in points among wideouts) to operate.

However, the direction of this unit got a massive boost when I traded for “Nuke” Hopkins, who is working hard to join the conversation of best WR in the league, backed up by his presence as the top scoring receiver in my league. With Leonard Hankerson surprising in Atlanta (No. 42 in WR points) and Eddie Royal getting healthy in Chicago, this has suddenly become a deep unit. Harry Douglas is getting lots of touches but no production in Tennessee, so I have a spot to play with at the back end of the receiver roster.

All of a sudden, I am facing tough flex decisions with guys like Blount, Mathews, Landry, Hankerson, and Royal—obviously, a good problem to have.


Thus far, Gronkowski’s been Gronkowski. He seems to go silent during the course of games for longer than usual, but then usually erupts for a big play that salvages the entire performance. My backup, Larry Donnell, has been solid (No. 14 in TE points), though prone to key red-zone drops that have hurt his numbers. I’ve gotten a trade offer (underwhelming doesn’t begin to describe it) for him along the way, but he’s a good guy to have in his current role.


Adam Vinatieri has been a woeful disappointment (No. 27 in points among kickers), largely as a function of the Colts’ sputtering offense. However, cutting Andrew Franks to pick up field goal machine Robbie Gould of the Bears was a shrewd move. I expect Vinatieri to become a more viable option as Indy (theoretically) figures things out, but the ageless Gould (No. 4 in K points) will be challenging for the starting nod each and every week.


This has been the perpetual weak spot for the Scooters this year. A byproduct of Miami’s implosion was the disappearance of a Dolphins “D” that was widely expected to be borderline dominant in 2015. The unit has shown signs of being that (No. 17 in D/ST points), but the early part of the schedule—where they should have wreaked havoc—is now over, and Miami has the hardest part of its schedule looming. I have resorted to playing my second defense, Cincinnati, on several occasions, and they have been a bit too up and down for my liking (No. 23 in points among defenses/special teams). This will be an area where I continue to search out an upgrade, whether through trade or playing the weekly matchup game on the waiver wire.

I don't really have any sort of grandiose closing statement about the second half of the season; I've been burned way too many times by the fantasy gods. We're just gonna take it one game at a time, live to fight another day, work hard for our teammates, stick to the process, and see where the dust settles.

Stay tuned ...

Friday, October 16, 2015

Limerick Friday LXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXIV: The Amazin’s Earn A Date With The Lovable Losers, Plus Farewell to OBC

Outlasted LA, oh the stress
Now it’s on to the NLCS
For luck, the genie lamp I rubs
As we have to take on the Cubs
An inspiring season for the Mets

He’s a Parcells disciple guy
The game may have passed him by
Good luck to Dan Campbell
With a team that’s in shambles
Might as well give it a try

An underperforming crew
Bad luck thrown in, too
An opportunity missed
Has the Scooters pissed
Should be 4-1 and not 3-2

An offense that ain’t scorin’
Play calls that have me snorin’
A D that looks confused
A quarterback getting abused
Doubts and concerns about Dave Doeren

He was a quote machine
Both hysterical and mean
Farewell to the Ol’ Ball Coach
His hilarity beyond reproach
A personality the game’s never seen

Friday, October 09, 2015

Limerick Friday LXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXIII: The ‘Fins Finally Shitcan “Queasy Joe,” Plus Harvey Douches Up Mets Celebration

Two years too late
Joe Philbin met his fate
A nice guy with some wit
Couldn’t coach for shit
The ‘Fins are in a sorry state

A caricature of an NFL coach
Dan Campell brings a new approach
A pumped-up believer in hitting
Has the entire roster shitting
Hopefully the win column it’ll broach

Against all odds, I made
One helluva helpful trade
DeAndre Hopkins came my way
Tyrod Taylor I sent away
Hoping Nuke can help me get paid

Lined up four cupcakes
Drubbed ‘em all, for Pete’s sakes
But when they played an actual team
At the top there rose no cream
A culmination of many Pack mistakes

As the Mets do postseason prep
A d-bag lives up to his rep
Matt Harvey determined to piss off a city
With an attitude detrimental and shitty
He’d do well to watch his every step

Thursday, October 01, 2015

WFFL Draft 2015: A Dramatic Shift In Strategy For The Scooters

Our league took some real hits over the offseason when a couple of mainstays left the league after 15+ seasons, so I was less pumped about the draft and the season in general than I can ever remember. However, once I was on the clock, the tension and anticipation came back in full force. Picking 10th in a 14-team league (I’m convinced our draft lottery system is rigged at this point) offered up a challenge, but one I am used to. Once the dust had settled, the beer bottles were emptied, and the shit-talk was exhausted, here’s what was left laying around:

1st round, 10th overall: Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay
In an unheard-of development in our league, which has been skewed toward quarterback points, no signal-callers were taken in the first eight picks. When Andrew Luck was taken right before my slot, I realized that I had a shot to land the best quarterback in the league with the 10th pick. I waited about 1.7 seconds to make this selection.

2nd round, 19th overall: Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England
Despite the hole it would put me in at the wide receiver and running back positions, there was simply no way I could pass Gronkowski at this spot. Not only does he perform like a #1 WR, but he has separated himself so completely from the rest of the TE position that it felt like a no-brainer. In fact, I was very surprised that he fell this far. P.S. I refuse to call him “Gronk.”

3rd round, 38th overall: Mark Ingram, RB, New Orleans
Though he had a promising 2014, Ingram still represented a bit of a gulp-inducing pick here. As predicted, the RB and WR pickings at this stage were very limited, and he was the last bonafide top back left. There are rumblings out of the Big Easy that he’ll be much more involved in the passing game, and it appears the Saints are really counting on Ingram stepping up his game to make up for the loss of Jimmy Graham and other playmakers over the past few years.

4th round, 47th overall: Amari Cooper, WR, OAK
I certainly wasn’t planning on having a rookie wide receiver for the Raiders to be my top wideout, but here we are. I’m huge on Cooper’s potential, especially having seen him turn Patrick Peterson around like a top in limited preseason action. I think Cooper is a quarterback- and franchise-proof target who enters the NFL with a very polished game and a lofty ceiling. If Derek Carr can stay healthy (and I can’t believe I’m typing this), he and Cooper should form one of the league’s most promising tandems pretty quickly.

5th round, 66th overall: Jarvis Landry, WR, MIA
I was hoping against hope that Landry would fall this far, and the virtual groans from right behind me in the draft order confirmed that I nailed this pick right on time. Landry has quickly become my favorite Dolphins player, and I feel he has a legit shot to catch 110-120 passes this year. Not the fastest wideout in the world, but a tough kid who is willing to go over the middle, shifty in space, and capable of catching anything remotely near him (I believe they call that “catch radius” now)—an important attribute when playing with Ryan Tannehill. Adding Landry gives me a duo of young, emerging receivers who could pay off in a big way.

6th round, 75th overall: Chris Ivory, RB, NYJ
Ivory was my keeper from a season ago; since I picked him after the 12th round last year, I was able to keep him for the price of a sixth-rounder this year. I debated it, but figured that this was about a round or so later than he likely would have gone and pulled the trigger. He doesn’t have another back to really threaten his workload and he is likely to be a larger factor in the passing game, so Ivory in this position made a lot of sense for me as my second back.

7th round, 94th overall: LeGarrette Blount, RB, NE
Eek. It was really hard for me to get excited about this selection, but the pickings were frighteningly slim at this spot. Blount’s a blockhead who seems to fail everywhere except for New England, where he runs like the second coming of Earl Campbell for some reason. An immediate self-second-guess choice, but you could do worse for your third back than to land New England’s top back.

8th round, 103rd overall: Eddie Royal, WR, CHI
Let’s face it: The Bears are going to be behind a lot of this year, and someone has to catch the passes that Jay Cutler doesn’t throw to the other team. Alshon Jeffery is a handful and Martellus Bennett is solid when he’s not bat-shit crazy, but Cutler has a history with Royal, who could provide some respectable numbers in a per-reception league. Definitely a bit of a gamble and project, but the eighth round is where you want to do that.

9th round, 122nd overall: Ryan Mathews, RB, PHI
I was frankly surprised that Mathews fell this far, as I’m not convinced that Murray will dominate touches in Philly. Chip Kelly has just enough crazy in him to spread the ball around for the Iggles, and if Mathews can stay healthy—which has long been his issue—he could record surprising stats in this offense.

10th round, 131st overall: Dolphins, D/ST, MIA
Miami has an easy early schedule, and the hope is that some key offseason acquisitions will actually play up to their reputation for the ‘Fins, which hasn’t historically been the case. The Dolphins might have the best defensive line in the league, and even though the back seven has a number of question marks, there is enough talent on hand to emerge as one of the best defenses in the league. Can that talent overcome the coaching? That’s the real question in South Beach—well, other than what STD Miley Cyrus currently has.

11th round, 150th overall: Cody Latimer, WR, DEN
I had heard good things about this kid most of the summer, and with Julius Thomas departed it seemed like there was room in the Broncos attack for another dependable receiver. Though Manning is declining quickly and down-the-field throws aren’t his “thing” anymore (he’s more Chad Pennington nowadays than anything else), Denver will find a way to put up points again this year, and landing a promising wideout from their system isn’t the worst pick in the world.

12th round, 159th overall: Phillip Dorsett, WR, INDY
The “keeper” picks for next year start in this round, so the first two picks of the 12th round were Jordy Nelson and Kelvin Benjamin—both out for the year with ACLs (if that tells you anything about my league). So this seemed like the right spot to grab a rookie burner in a potent offense with a great quarterback, with one eye on this year and the other eye on next. Depending on how the pecking order shakes out in Indy, Dorsett is a strong get as my fifth receiver.

13th round, 178th overall: Harry Douglas, WR, TEN
I’ll be honest, I pretty much took Douglas because he scored a long touchdown in the preseason, which is how I found out he played for the Titans now. I thought he was an underrated part of Atlanta’s attack, and with Mariota arriving in Tennessee, grabbing a veteran starting wideout at this part of the draft as my sixth receiver could turn into something. Honestly, the bottom of the roster will be churned on the waiver wire all year long, but for this night, I felt good about the pick.

14th round, 187th overall: Adam Vinatieri, K, INDY
A good kicker in a good offense. Yes, I’m pretty sure Bronco Nagurski was Vinatieri’s first holder, but he still keeps getting the job done and our league’s points are slanted toward kickers. Not a bad grab at this stage.

15th round, 206th overall: Larry Donnell, TE, NYG
I second-guessed myself a bit here, making a last-second decision to grab Donnell over New Orleans tight end Josh Hill. Donnell fell off dramatically after a strong early part of last season, but I didn’t expect to see him still around this late in the draft. If he can find his early-2014 form, he’ll be a strong backup and an occasional option for a flex play.

16th round, 215th overall: Bengals, D/ST, CIN
Again, a bit of a surprise to see Cincy available this late. As a second defense, this was a no-brainer, especially considering Cincinnati’s relatively weak early schedule. Of course, this also represents a hedge in case the Dolphins play like the Dolphins defensively instead of as a top D/ST.

17th round, 234th overall: Tyrod Taylor, QB, BUF
Obviously, not a whole lot of huge expectations surrounding Taylor, but he’s a mobile quarterback surrounded by a lot of highly respectable weapons. I don’t think Beefalo will ask him to do too much, but a backup quarterback who can make plays with his legs and has weapons is an ideal scenario behind a signal-caller like Rodgers.

18th round, 243rd overall: Andrew Franks, K, MIA
This was more of a tweak to the other ‘Fins fan in the league, who picked Caleb Sturgis in the last round—who was cut by the Dolphins a couple of days prior. I don’t know that Franks will stick on my roster, but he was worth a flier and the opportunity to zing a fellow long-suffering Miami fan.


There’s something comforting about having the top two players in the league at their respective positions to form the core of your team. I did less research and made riskier projections than I’ve ever done, but came away (once again) getting a lot of praise from other owners on my haul.

I face an extremely difficult division, but for the aspect of fantasy football that the draft accounts for, I was happy with what I was able to pull off and eager to see whether my gambles would pay off down the road.

Friday, September 25, 2015


A Yankee legend before his times
The king of funny one-lines
At a great cost
Baseball has lost
A treasure of many different kinds

Pack has won three straight
Against who is up for debate
An embarrassing schedule so far
Has left the door ajar
To wonder exactly who is State

Banshee screams on a major stage
Is it all part of ‘roid rage?
With a customary lack of class
Serena Williams beat at the pass
Can we all now just turn the page?

Outcoached in every game
A franchise without any shame
Joe Philbin passed his sell-by date
Exasperation turning to hate
Players change, but results stay the same

“Under the Dome” has jumped the shark
“Whispers” surprisingly good on a lark
“Fear the Walking Dead” unique at first
But for actual action it does thirst
TV picks have been pretty stark