Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Kurse Watch (Fantasy Focus)

The Kurse came off Drew Brees' bye and re-announced its presence with authority. Deion Branch out for a couple weeks, Shaun Alexander's fullback retired, Drew Brees crapped the bed...again, and the very injury that Kurse watch predicted in the beginning of the year, and reiterated last week, happened. The Kurse went through Cadillac Williams and knocked out Michael Pittman for a good portion of the season. So, here are this weeks rankings with some bonus comments at the end.

Start planning your retirement.
Drew Brees. It's all over, and I personally apologize to all Saints fans. My brother says he hates Drew Brees, but he only has himself to blame. He should have drafted all Patriots, then he might have had a chance.

Quick, fake an injury!
Shaun Alexander. He's already been severely average. He's playing with a broken hand. His fullback was just forced to retired due to a spinal injury. All not good signs with the kurse running out of targets.

1-2, he's comin' for you...
Travis Henry stays right here this week. I think we all agree that it's only a matter of time at this point.

Safe...for now
Deion Branch! Nice job suffering that "minor" injury in order to avoid more serious damage.

I'm a Survivor!
Randy Moss had an off day, but it's not enough to remove him from this spot. Also, Braylon Edwards is very close to joining him here.

We could be in the midst of the most destructive year in the history of the Kurse. It's not pretty, and shows no signs of letting up, but let's finish up with something a little more positive...

Maybe it's the celebrations, or the endearing "me first" attitude, but I've always been partial to WRs. I always pay special attention to them and here are some observations on a few of the young (3rd year in the league or less) potential breakout WR's over the next season or two:

FYI, this is more "Who's Next", than "Who's Now" so don't expect to see Braylon Edwards/Marques Colston types.

-Dwayne Bowe is a man. I didn't see this coming, and I have a hard time complimenting anything about the Chiefs, but he's far and away the best rookie wide receiver right now (apologies to The Ginn Family), and he would be even if Calvin Johnson was healthy. I'm not simply basing this off of his one huge game against the Chargers, watch him play and you'll see it too. He catches everything, demands the ball, and has a blend of size, strength, and speed that would remind you of Luke Staley.

-Brandon Marshall: He's another one that looks to be pretty solid. He's got the measurables and is in a better situation than Bowe, but Cutler hasn't exactly been the dream QB many pegged him to be. As far as talent/ability goes, I see him as more of a #2 and put him behind Bowe. But his fantasy value is probably similar , maybe even slightly higher, because Denver should end up being less inept on offense than KC and Javon Walker is never on the field to take looks away from him.

-Santonio Holmes: He proved, at least for one week, that he could be a number 1 guy. He was pretty consistent and productive throughout most of his rookie season as well. I wasn't sold on Holmes when he came out, but I certainly think Pittsburgh is getting the most out of him for their offensive style. I'm not sure I'd want him as my #1, or how successful he'd be somewhere else, but in Pittsburgh, as an afterthought to most defenses - perfect fit. A significant upgrade talent wise over Randle El in that same role.

-Vincent Jackson: He finished strong last season and a lot of people were excited about his potential coming into his third season on a loaded Chargers team. His numbers are decent so far, but I have trouble taking him seriously for a number of reasons. First, he even says he's out there to run block more than anything. Second, I've seen him drop too many catchable balls over the last season+. Third, the Chargers just don't throw to people not named Antonio Gates that often. So, what you're getting right now is probably the best you can hope for. About 4 catches for 60-75 yards. If he gets a TD and/or breaks 100 yards, consider yourself fortunate for the week.

-Roddy White: He's had some atrocious drops over his first three seasons, but is making the most of his chances this year. Believe me, I watched Joey Harrington over throw Chris Chambers countless times, so while the number of receptions is discouraging (aside from the Carolina game), I'm sure it's not entirely his fault. That being said, he struggled mightily his first two seasons, and it could be tough for him to flourish in that offense, without a QB. I'd stay away from him this season and next until the Falcons showed some stability and he showed some consistency.

-Demetrius Williams: I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Williams is the real deal. It's almost to the point where I'm even wanting Kyle Boller to start just so there's someone that can reach Demetrius (from his knees even!). If the Ravens had an offensive line that could buy just a little time for a capable QB to throw downfield, their offense would make a much bigger jump than awful to adequate. They have a group of weapons that fit nicely together in Williams, Mason, Clayton, Heap, McGahee, but they're all being wasted right now.

Others I'm keeping an eye on, but want to see more of:
Greg Jennings, James Jones, Jacoby Jones, Sidney Rice, Ted Ginn Jr., Calvin Johnson, Anthony Gonzalez, Robert Meachem, and of course - Chad WOLFEGANG Jackson! Chad was my next big thing at WR coming out of Florida, then he got stuck on the Patriots and tore his ACL. I'm still rooting for him, but it's not going to be easy.

Here are some that I think cannot be successful in their current situations:
Reggie Brown, Devery Henderson, Troy Williamson, Matt Jones, Brandon Jones, Derek Hagan

That's all for now, maybe some baseball tomorrow before the weekly NFL picks on Friday.

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