EAGLES BORN OUT OF THUNDER

EAGLES BORN OUT OF THUNDER

Tonight’s game is kinda of a matchup between teams that are sorta-kinda similar, but not. How informative! Yes, you could say that about every team in the league… Look! One has football players, but they are all different! But to get away from the meta-conversation, both these teams came into the season full of mediocrity and low expectations. While we’re only in Week 2 (about on our way to Week 3, granted), the Eagles and Bears seem to be travelling in very different directions from their shared starting points. Carson Wentz had a successful debut against the Browns (alright, you’re right, it is the Browns), but Ryan Mathews made it to Week 2 without a season-ending injury, and Jordan Matthews looks pretty good. (Against the Browns…) The Bears on the other hand… Jay Cutler did Jay Cutler things, and the running game was astoundingly meh. So are the Eagles a potential playoff team with the Bears destined to once again be a doormat for the NFC North? It’s quite obviously too early to tell, but depending on how the game goes, both, none, and either could be the case after tonight. Well… maybe not either.

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diggscatch

In what could have been a wonderful work of satire in today’s title, last night’s Sunday excursion into Minnesota’s new football stadium may have upended years of programming in thinking that Sam Bradford (22/31, 286 YDS, 9.2 AVG, 2 TD, 121.2 RTG and 1 CAR, -3 YDS) isn’t quite the second coming of Joe Montana, but moreso a cross between Mr. Glass from Unbreakable and Jimmy Clausen. Yeah, an M. Night Shyamalan reference, deal with it. One game won’t change my expertly crafted comparisons, but after beating a team that has basically controlled the division for the last decade, and doing it mostly without Adrian Peterson who did essentially nothing until finally resigning to get injured and leave the game, should say something. I mean, Matt Asiata got more in his first carry this game than Peterson has ran the entire year… And so when we are in the second week of the season, saying that the Vikings front office was onto something by mortgaging a part of their future in a desperate attempt to replace Teddy Bridgewater may be a step too far as of now (since if you whisper “Sam Bradford” into a mirror three times, one of his ACLs will explode.), it is an encouraging start. And before you think that Bradford may not be the lede you were looking for, I think the meta conversation here is that forming conclusions and finding confirmation bias from two weeks of football is probably not wise. And that’s something that should probably be discussed. It matters in the general football sense if you’re, say, a Seahawks fan, but it also matters in fantasy football if you’re, say,  a Todd Gurley owner. When is the right time to panic? To make a move? We’ve only seen about 12% of the season thus far, and to make a baseball reference, that’s game 20. Making waiver moves, exploring trades, probing at what you can do is always a good thing, but my advice here (since I’ve seen a lot of inquiries on this) is to hold for the moment. Or, at the very least, do not sell yourself short. Just wait a bit longer before chugging down the bourbon and gaslighting yourself… one more week, maybe two, before you make any major decisions, and I promise you’ll have a clearer picture and still have enough time left to do something about it.

Here’s what else I saw during yesterday’s Week 2 Sunday games…

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lXRDURi

You know, at first glance, you wonder why we’re watching a prime time game featuring the Vikings. At least, that was my reaction on our last podcast… but when you delve into the actual thought process NBC went through, it starts making a bit more sense. First, it’s the Packers… their like the Patriots, in that half the nation tunes in out of love and fandem. The exception here being that the other half of American which has resounding disdain for the New England franchise let out a collective “meh” when it comes to Green Bay. Could the combination of Rodgers doing State Farm commercials and Clay Matthews never cutting his hair be part of the reason why? Most definitely not, but I’m no psychologist. Second, the Vikings are debuting their new stadium and were a team on the rise. A lot of young talent, and a lot of upside, quite possibly leading them to be a nice sleeper pick for the postseason. Then, Teddy Bridgewater’s knee exploded in 18 different places and the Vikings decided to mortgage a part of their future for Sam Bradford. Seems good. So we get tonight’s game… which should be stated, has the ingredients to be close. A division matchup, at home for the Vikings, the air of a new stadium. Then again, this is Sam Bradford’s debut, so an 80-point blowout is also just as possible…

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Someone give the guy a cigarette and get it over with…

A pretty crowded afternoon slate today, highlighted by the Jaguars vs. Chargers game. Haha, just kidding. Also, not sure how I would type out a crying noise. Or the sound my fetal position makes. Honestly, it’s pretty much the Seahawks vs. Rams and Colts vs. Broncos show, but I’m let the deciding factor be the fact that Troy Aikman and Joe Buck are the crew for just one of those games. So Colts-Broncos game, here we go! Oh, what’s that? Jim Nantz and Phil Simms are handling that one? Oh, okay. Well then. Excuse me for a second. That being said, the Rams always seem to play their division rival Seahawks pretty close, handing them a some surprising upset wins the past few years. Surprising, as one team represents all the things you want out of a continually elite franchise with excellent results, and the other representing mediocrity and disappointingly low expectations year after year and a consistent and frustrating basis. Sure, you can be a person that loves rooting for the underdog, but when the underdog doesn’t even care all that much… and then we have the modernly “historic” (all the oxymoron points) game between the Colts and Broncos, a matchup that hasn’t featured Peyton Manning as either quarterback since 1993. So thanks for making me feel old!

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joz_o6cksral6ms9

Despite my complaints last week about some of the opening matchups being akin to choking on benzos (the Bills versus Ravens game still brings me into a yawn-state right at this moment), this morning’s schedule brings a bit more to the table. Sorta. I mean, yes, there are the aforementioned Ravens going against the Browns, which seems like a good time to take a nap. The Chiefs and Texans don’t seem terribly exciting. Even the 49ers at Panthers game doesn’t really do it for me, and that’s the 49ers fault. The Titans and Lions? That’s a big nope. But it’s hard to knock a day that starts out with some good ‘ole AFC North derp, which I’m sure the Bengals and Steelers will be happy to provide, and provide in large quantities. It’s tough for me, as I’m sure those who have read this site for a few years know that I find the NFC East derp to be both most satisfying and very often exemplifying the perfect levels of schadenfreude, but I would say the AFC North is a close second in that regard. Sure, the Browns are the Browns, but the levels the other three teams go to when facing off against each other to make sure we laugh and cry, often at the same time, is to be commended.

Couple things to note before we get started: First, if you haven’t done it yet, be sure to check out our new weekly projections to help set your lineups. If you are doing some DFS today (I’ll be doing DFS to your mother, if you know what I mean. *Wink, wink* I actually have no idea what that means…), check out our new DFSbot. Also, for all of you in our RCLs, we’ll have an update out next week with standings. I know they’re important, but we’ve been busy creating and implementing all of these new tools that were just talked about, so hopefully that’ll make up for it. And as always, our updated rankings are available after the jump!

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fitzmagicfumble

I’ll be honest, I was late turning on the game by about five minutes, and arrived to a replay of a stupid shovel pass by Ryan Fitzpatrick and a field goal. Honestly, the Jets had possession for like 14 minutes in the first quarter and was losing… Typical I said! But whoa, 67,000 points later, I was like, what in hell actually happened? Would this be the game that might actually remove the dreaded Thursday night curse of beyond-sh*tty football? Well, probably not, Phil Simms is still alive… baby steps though. In what was a sorta-kinda “color rush” game, also known as GANG LIME JELLO NEON RAVE GREEN game, the Jets actually wanted it both ways, going with their usual white with green uniforms for the sake of the color blind. All eight percent of you. Which is fine, but if you’re going to go all white, it better be something like K-Swiss or else I ain’t even gonna notice. And yes, the game’s final score of 37-31 seems closer than the game actually was (and was probably quadruple what the O/U from Vegas was), but we did find out some valuable information moving forward. First, the Jets defense kinda sucks. Second, I saw some personnel issues with the Bills. Those include: The Bills. Oh, there were also 13 total penalties this game, good for 109 yards. If only I had picked up the referees off waivers instead of the Jets defense…

Special Note: As you might notice after the jump, our new Player Pages are up and running (whenever a player’s full name is written, you’ll be able to click on it and be taken to a magical box of info and other nifty thingamajigs). Special thanks to Rudy for this brand new feature, and he’ll have a post on this later today delving into the development, his process, and what you can expect moving forward. It’ll probably be a bit more informative than calling them “thingamajigs”, that’s for sure. But if you want a quick look-see, check out my favorite player’s page!

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jets-fan-fist-pump-against-bills

Well, this is a matchup that makes me think: Man, what did I do this week to deserve this? And on a Thursday night no less! You know we’re going to see a 3-0 game here, and if we’re lucky, maybe it’ll be 6-3. I could even see a 1-0 game. Honestly. I mean, one can only hope that we get a safety out of this so we can at least have a few laughs. Oh, god, I almost forgot this marks the debut of Phil f*cking Simms, and his favorite enabler, Jim Nantz. What. The. Hell. Not only that, but we have a hobbled Sammy Watkins to deal with, Tyrod Taylor trying to climb himself back into relevance, and a Jets offense that’s more boring than Cris Collinsworth hyping up Tom Brady. I guess this is my way of telling you to make sure all your favorite alcohol beverages and antacids are stocked up. And probably get your ear plugs, and probably blindfolds in the ready position…

The rankings have been updated just now for tonight’s game, and can be found here.

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Year Accuracy Rank Highest Lowest Percentile
Week 1 TBA TBA TBA TBA TBA
2015 57.5% 22 out of 123 59.9% 51.6% Top 20%
2014 58.1% 31 out of 125 60.7% 50.6% Top 25%

Welp, Week 1 was… interesting? I guess that’d be an apt descriptor. Unless you were a Keenan Allen owner. Then I would call it an excuse to catch some of that alcohol poisoning that’s been going around. I guess the same could be true of all you Tyrod Taylor hype-sters out there (no Von Miller, you stay the ef away man, I did not say hipster!), but let’s be honest, Sammy Watkins owners have it a bit worse. Regardless, we look to Week 2 as an affirmation that we’re all not crazy for drafting Todd Gurley, Dez Bryant, Devonta Freeman, etc., and we have now at least one week of games in the books to make numerical assumptions in the hopes of making the right decisions for our fantasy football teams. That was probably the more robust way of saying “hey guys, I watched some games, here are some more rankings”, but whatever. I got a lede to write, naw what I’m sayin’?

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Welcome to the newest episode of the Razzball Football podcast! As the title alludes to in very obvious ways, not only do we go over some highlights from Week 1 and preview Week 2, but we also get a fully-fledged admittance that Tehol may have made a huge mistake by selling Tyrod Taylor to the masses. To be fair, all of us enabled him, so maybe the blame lies with us all? DEEP. Regardless, our amazing “production value” returns as Tehol once again braves the highway as a professional driver and talker at the same time, which made it sound like we recorded near an ocean. Only if that ocean was full of low-volume background static. Surf those electromagnetic radiation waves braaaah. I’m also happy to introduce a special conversation in the middle of the cast that I had with John Sahly, a senior writer over at Pro Football Weekly. We’re set to face off against each other in Pod Vader’s BlogTalkRadio League, and talk about not just our upcoming face-off, but what exactly a “fantasy expert” is. Hint: Not much! After that short reprieve, Tehol, Zach, and myself finish up our Week 2 previews. Enjoy the show!

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brownthrust

I probably should have found a 49ers highlight to go with the title, but there weren’t any. I’m serious.

What a night of football! Said no one ever. In what was probably a taste of things to come for all future Monday Night Football games, the opening salvo of last night’s double-header extravaganza (the sarcasm is already palpable) of the Steelers versus Washington and the Rams versus the 49ers was all I needed to further convince me that Mondays in general should never exist. In an evening that started with some promise for Washington, they soon returned to their normal NFC East ways, and funny how that return also matched the return of O.G. Cousins. Which also seems like a cool rap name. The Steelers soon took over the game because that’s what happens when a NFL defense lets you do whatever you want. The fact that Washington are 2-15 at home on Monday nights and 5-20 in their last 25 primetime games might have something to do with it too. I’m not sure what, but that’s an astounding stat. And so last night, as that first game winded down, a sadness deep in my heart rose, anticipating what was soon to come. And that was the Rams and 49ers game, a battle that will probably end up determining which team reaches 5-11 and 4-12, respectively. God is good, some say, and I believe this is why I’m an atheist. And yeah, the Steelers and 49ers ended up winning, but I’m pretty sure we all lost for it. And one thing’s for sure, after Keenan Allen died, along with the Chargers morale for the rest of the season, I think we know which is the best California team now: the Raiders. And the Stanford Marching Band.

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