I’ve made some changes to the Stats Machine (TSM) this week in hopes to present more accurate data. While this is a weekly post that highlights the previous week’s top performances, TSM also provides a year-to-date report to help you identify valuable players. Until now, this has been based on the players’ total score for the season. The problem with that is that it punishes players that have already had a bye, as they will have had one less game than players that have not. Until all teams have had their bye week, this list will be powered by each players’ average score per game. Got it? Good.

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Don’t worry, I’m not going to recommend that you listen to the Run DMC cover of the classic Aerosmith song in your Adidas jump suit this weekend [Jay's Note: Awww, I'm already dressed up for it!], but I’m going to recommend that you start Raiders’ running back, Darren McFadden.

It’s disgusting to read, I get it.  How many times have we bought into McFadden only to be let down in the past?  If you can tally up the times, please let me know.  However, the matchup this week against the Browns is too good to pass up.  Since Tony Sparano has taken over as head coach of the Raiders, he’s made it a point to run the ball with McFadden.  McFadden has a total of 34 touches (six catches) for 141 yards and one touchdown in his two games under Sparano.

Meanwhile, Maurice Jones-Drew has just seven carries in those contests, so there’s no feeling that he’ll vulture McFadden.  The Browns, for whatever reason, are horrible against the run.  On the year, they’ve given up seven touchdowns to running backs, and they are coming off a game in which they were gashed by Denard Robinson.  Yes, they made a Jaguars running back actually look good.

You can’t trust McFadden to stay healthy for the entire season, but his matchup against the Browns is as good as it gets, and he’s our start of the week for Week 8.

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C.J. Spiller can’t catch a break man. Is there anyone else in the NFL as unlucky as Spiller? He’s like the Charlie Brown of professional football. When everyone else is getting chocolate bars and quarters on Halloween, C.J. is getting rocks. (Sad Trombone.) I’d like to tell you that I feel your pain, but I don’t. I avoided Spiller in drafts the way vegans avoid bacon. Which is the primary reason I don’t trust vegans, but anywho! Spiller is more than likely done for the foreseeable future and maybe the season. He was IR’ed with a designation to return, but his chances of returning from a separated shoulder are pretty slim. Just to make things that much more complicated, Fred Jackson decided to get hurt too, it’s a twofer! So now desperate fantasy owners are once again hitting the wavier wire to chase a third stringer promoted to the starting role. Enter Bryce Brown and Anthony Dixon.

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“I need a new helmet. OMAHA. Yeah, that’s right, my head’s growing at a rapid rate. OMAHA. ROMO. ELWAY. OMAHA. New helmet on one! SET. OMAHA.”

Well, it would be hard for me to analyze this game with an unbiased viewpoint, seeing as how I’m pretty obvious homer. But hey, at least I’m obvious. That being said, I’d have to say that Mike Carey and myself could have probably been best friends. Essentially every decision he called last night was the opposite of what the refs decided, because, let’s be honest here, the officiating was complete sh*t. A crucial special teams fumble by Denver was called back, even though replays clearly showed the ball moving before the player was down, allowing Petyon Manning to drive for a touchdown before the half. In the third quarter, a Philip Rivers interception that was caught on the ground, with movement, was not overturned. A crucial redzone interception by Eric Weddle was called back because of a defensive holding penalty, which, might I add, was way before the 5-yard mark. And then later, a Juwan Thompson touchdown was confirmed, even though he didn’t break the plane… so… whatever. I suppose things like this happen. At the very least, Ronnie Hillman was negated something like 80 fantasy points, and the Broncos seemed more interested in trolling fantasy players than by any other team I’d seen in recent memory. So even though Denver won, I’m pretty sure most of us lost. Including my liver. What can I say? Misery loves company…

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Except for 2010, the Chargers or Broncos have won the AFC West every year since 2004, and the other team finished second in seven of those years. Mainly because the Raiders are gonna Raider. The series, as a whole, has been quite the see-saw battle over the decades, starting back to their shared AFL days, all the way to the aforementioned 2004 season. You see, that’s when Philip Rivers came. Which would be the start of seven straight children. Get it? Also there were those nine victories in his first 11 starts against the AFC rival. However, the now Peyton Manning led Broncos have won five of the past six games, and he’s coming off a game where he threw his record-breaking 509th touchdown. While the Chargers defense is missing several key play-makers, most notably in the linebacker corps, and the defensive line, and the secondary, so pretty much everywhere, it remains to be seen if they can limit Manning to double-digit touchdowns. That being said, the Broncos were heavily favored in last year’s Thursday night game and managed to let Rivers and the Chargers offense drive the football in 25 minute increments, most likely a key recipe for tonight not to be a blow out. Just like how my recipe for tonight will be profound alcohol consumption and crying. Whether they are tears of happiness or tears of sadness, well, like always, that’s up to what kind of porn I watch after the game…

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Oh wise and powerful Elder Gods, I beg of you to release me from this bondage of constant anguish that my fantasy players have brought down upon me this season. For you, I would give my left nut and sacrifice my best friend and prize chicken, Beatrice, if you so asked me to (please do not). The pain, the pain… I cannot bear it much longer. But this isn’t all about me though. My readers still have hope. Do not punish them, oh Gods, for they don’t deserve your vengeful scorn. They pray to you, the same as I. Bless them with bountiful treasures of fantasy glory.

With that being said, I do own Jerick McKinnon in most of my leagues, and that, my friends, is a very good thing. Of course, it’s because I owned Adrian Peterson, so I suppose that takes some of the luster off of it. Either way, McKinnon must be owned and ridden like that Thai girl (or boy?) rode me one in that fateful night in Bangkok. His explosion is legendary, and watching him run in the open field is an event of unsurpassed beauty. Running for over 100 yards on a Buffalo team that was previously giving up only 2.8 yards a carry is no simple feat. Matt Asiata… he’s no longer relevant. We’ll always have that 3 touchdown game, Matt, and I thank you kindly for the memories. McKinnon’s in line for another special performance against Tampa Bay this week, and I suggest you place him in your fantasy lineups.

I am Tehol Beddict, and this is Disgrace/Delight! Take Heed!

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To be honest, Florida kinda sucks.  Not the state of course… just the football teams.  [Jay's Note: Oh, I can make plenty of cases for the state sucking.]  And not even all of them… more like two of them, specifically… I mean, yeah, the Jags roughed up the Browns a bit last week, but say that out loud one more time and let me know if you feel any more validated as a Jaguars fan? Didn’t think so. Tampa Bay? They got two solid wins against former powerhouses, but does knowing what we know now about the Steelers and Saints make those wins lose a little luster? Don’t get me wrong, a win is a win, but then again, it’s really not.  Miami is, by far, the best team coming out of the state, and they’re the real deal (for real!).  They’re two parts sexy defense, and one part boring-but-game-managing offense.  I’m totally picking on the northern Florida teams this week.

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So this week, we go to the quarterback position. Why? Because I sorta say so, and I’m the one typing.  Show of hands, how many people are still rolling with Matt Ryan?  I see one up front, a few shy kids in the back, and a high school kid just giving me the finger.  Well, in my estimation, a lot of you still are.  So here is my spotlight this week… instead of pretending that Matt Ryan is going to turn it around against the top ranked defense, why not look at a quarterback that is owned by a third of you, and started by just a fifth.  My fellow gents and rude high school kid, take a look at the Ryan Tannehill show.  I know he isn’t for everyone, but there are some of us that have a question mark there.  Tannehill is owned in just 35% of the Yahoo universe, and only started in 14%. The past two weeks he has outscored Stafford, Romo, Ryan, Geno Smith… ahh, you caught me.  You were paying attention.  The list of quarterbacks is pretty long, and it doesn’t start over those three definite startable options.  So stick around as I convince you to start a lower percentage quarterback over a fantasy stalwart.

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2014 In-Season Accuracy: 59.3% (4th out of 20 Experts, 61.9% Highest, 43.9% Lowest).

I hate to start off with yet another injury, but the loss of Paul Posluszny for the season with a torn pectoral muscle (along with the same injury to Brian Orakpo, do you guys even lift?), leaves the IDP world with yet another stud down for the count. I’ll talk replacements in a second, but I want to take a second to talk about the brilliance of Poz. He’s played on terrible teams for his entire career, yet he’s been an IDP stud ever since he cracked the starting lineup. And by terrible teams, I mean really, really terrible. Like his teams have never even been .500 and their winning percentage during his career is .305, including this year. This is yet another reason why playing in IDP leagues is fun, because even when you’re forced to watch Blake Bortles literally learn the game of football in front of your eyes, you still can enjoy a ball hawk linebacker destroying opposing RBs and giving your team valuable points. Get well soon Poz.

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Special Note: JB Gilpin has returned! Sorta-kinda. You should know that he runs Razzball Basketball and was kind enough to have me on the podcast over there. Why? Because this is my first year playing Fantasy Basketball (RCLs are still open, join up!), and if you haven’t partaken, you should, um, partake. I was in trouble, like three words in…

2014 In-Season Accuracy: 57.60% (19th out of 122 Experts, 60.30% Highest, 49.60% Lowest).

Week 7 Results: 59.70% (33rd out of 132 Experts, 64.30% Highest, 46.50% Lowest).

Accuracy Rank Experts Highest Lowest Score +/- Rank +/-
Week 1 61.80% 22 134 66.10% 48.20%
Week 2 54.00% 35 135 61.30% 42.10% -7.80% -13
Week 3 57.40% 88 128 67.10% 44.30% 3.40% -53
Week 4 56.50% 48 128 61.10% 42.80% -0.90% 40
Week 5 56.50% 70 131 69.40% 47.00% 0.00% -22
Week 6 56.30% 27 133 63.10% 41.50% -0.20% 43
Week 7 59.70% 33 132 64.30% 46.50% 3.40% -6
Totals 57.60% 19 122 60.30% 49.60%

And now, your Week 8 Rankings…

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