Welcome everybody to this week’s edition of “I’m Sorry Guys”, our recurring series here at Razzball where I apologize for not being in the comments for last week’s article and for not doing my normal weekly opening paragraph due to major life events. This week, I’ll talk about how I didn’t write the usual lede because I just got engaged this past weekend, and nobody bothered to tell me that planning a wedding is pretty much a second full-time job. How’d I get engaged, you ask? Well, it was a dreary Saturday in Central Park… *answers call from Jay* I’ve been informed that this is actually another installment of Deep Impact, and also that nobody cares how I got engaged (that’s pretty rude, Jay, but thanks for responding to the questions last week). Let’s jump right into these names, folks.

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What’s up fans of American Football!? It’s your good buddy Honcho back to walk you through the AFC North. Yuck. That was my first reaction when I was assigned this division. I mean, can you think of four teams that deserve each other more than this group of franchise swapping,  Super Bowl gloating, bad chili pushing tough-guy wannabees? Yeah, me either. This division is tough to love. I mean truly it is. But I’m here to give you the tour so let’s proceed.

Our first objective is to identify the participants. Let’s start with the Cleveland Browns. Okay, cool. So you’re feeling good about the NBA season, but guess what LeBron’s not under center…..And that’s probably a bad thing. They hired a baseball analytics specialist to ruin –  errrrr I mean run things. The Dodgers thought so little of him they ran him out-of-town. What could possibly go wrong? So here’s the thing…I think they’re on the right track, accumulating draft picks and athletes – but this isn’t the year. Heading south, but still staying in Ohio we find the Cincinnati Bengals who have a better than average team, but just can’t win a playoff game. They’ll give it another shot this season and will probably challenge the Steelers for the top spot in the division. Speaking of the Steelers….Is there a more insufferable fan base in football? I’ve been to Pittsburgh more than a few times and you know what? Every Steelers’ fan looks the same. How is that possible? The jorts say it’s summer, the tucked in jersey says it’s football season, but the waistline says you gave up a long time ago. Ha! Just kidding Pittsburgh, I love your city! Mostly due to Primanti Brothers but hey, gotta start somewhere, right? This year you’re the team to beat in the North. Don’t mess this up. Finally we have the Ravens. Flacco’s back. That’s good. They signed Trent Richardson and then proceeded to release him shortly after. He didn’t even stick around to try Ray-Ray’s famous “Deer-Antler” spray. That was rude. Anyway, the Ravens are staring 8-8 right in the face, but if any team can luck box their way into the playoffs it’s this bunch.

So, with all that said the fantasy relevant information awaits. Per usual, I’ll list the teams in order of predicted finish. Here we go!

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Welcome back, my loyal Horde! I trust that you have all been able to get on without me this past week? No arrests, Megan’s Law registries, or restraining orders? If not, then that means you are all here for another weekly dose of my awesomeness, and, with the regular season approaching, hopefully I have given you some things to think about (up to this point) as Fantasy Football draft season begins. I know, I know, there are soooo many writers out there who probably give you the same thing I do, each week. But remember, nothing can compare to the original, and baby, I am as original as it gets! Imitation really is the best form of flattery, but you know, only I can satisfy your weekly need of Fantasy Football wisdom like no other. So, without further ado, let’s get on with this week’s version of my gospel according to Jen with Hit it or Quit it, the Preseason Editions…

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The heat check. Familiar with it? When you’re comin’ in so hot to a matchup that you feel like you’re as on fire as the Mike D cheat code from NBA Jam TE, you just start trying anything. Shooting from 30′ in basketball, swinging at anything thrown to a catcher in baseball, or attempting to break free in football by running more horizontally than vertically. None of those things I just mentioned are sound decisions, but you’re in the delirium of the heat check. Mr. T and his entire A-Team couldn’t stop you from doing what you need when you’re on fire. But it’s in these moments where you forget what made you so hot…and you get stoopid.

That hot streak you rode in on just blew a tire to send you tumble-weeding face first into the embarrassment of soured achievements. Now before you get all defensive and read this as a prodding of your glorious and gluttonous track record in fantasy football, because I’m sure you’re the king of the world of the water cooler of your work, but deep breath…these fun little analogies are incredibly befitting of none other than me.

A new week, a new storyline. It’s the beauty of fantasy football. Week 10 brought with it some exciting highlights in my fantasy football season: my teams went 7-0, I came out strong in the DFS games, and I began my writing foray here at Razzball covering the weekly game we offer. How’d I finish in my inaugural attempt? 2nd. And with it a little bit of instant clout. I was feeling good about my entry until time failed to stop at Week 10, moved on with the calendar seven days, and brought with it Week 11. Ever had one of those moments in sports where your heat check cooled into something a frigid as Elsa’s fingertips way too fast (yes, I just referenced Disney. You’re welcome.)? Yeah, for Week 11, ‘hot’ was the last thing I was comin’ in as. Week 12? Still didn’t learn my lesson, even though we didn’t offer the Razzball FanDuel Contest. What’s that you ask?

Each week we offer a 22-man Razzball-only FanDuel Contest that pays out the top-5 finishers. Think you’re good enough to operate beyond just luck and work your way to the prize? Then put your money where your fingertips are and enter the $5 Contest for Week 13!

Time to remember what got us here and take advantage of the final week of the fantasy regular season. Here’s how to navigate Week 13 in a 22-man contest…

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Notable injuries yesterday: EVERYONE. That’s correct my friends and fellow fantasy players, the time has come to huddle together and drown in our collective tears. And when I say tears, I don’t just mean the kind that comes out of our eyes. I’m talking the kind that comes happens to our body parts… Chances are, if you had a player on your team playing yesterday, they exploded and tore something. Entire body sections were lost yesterday, as if millions of ACLs and MCLs suddenly cried out in terror and were silenced. Steve Smith? Out for the year with a potentially career-ending Achilles tear. Reggie Bush, carted off the field with a torn ACL. Ryan Fitzpatrick, left the game early in the first quarter. The Chargers entire roster left their game against the Ravens before the second half. (Twelve total players.) Matt Forte, an undisclosed knee injury. In fact, Andrew Luck felt so left out from yesterday’s festivities, reports were released showing that he’s been playing with fractured ribs along with a still-present shoulder injury. And, of course, Le’Veon Bell’s injury (shown above) looms large as we continue to wait on any kind of news. As of now, it appears that Bell has avoided the dreaded ACL injury and that it might just be limited to a MCL injury. That basically means a multi-week setback at best, but doesn’t rule out a season-ending one. [Update: The latest reports show that he did suffer a full tear of his MCL, most likely ending his season.] As of now, DeAngelo Williams returns to the starting role, an area which he excelled at early in the season during Bell’s suspension, and Dri Archer will also see some carries, further proving that he is still as useless as ever. Gentlemen and ladies, these are the times when I realize alcohol is an important part of the life process. Let us drink, and hopefully not be injured while doing so…

Here’s what else I saw during Week 8’s Sunday games…

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Is there still such a thing as an ACL injury after effect?  Adrian Peterson famously rushed for over 2000 yards the year following a December ACL tear.  Jeremy Maclin turned out to be a 2014 draft day bargain after suffering an ACL tear in the 2013 preseason.  Rob Gronkowski also went undervalued in 2014 drafts after coming off an ACL injury.  Now Todd Gurley is meeting or exceeding his expectations.  The fact is that risk is always built into the value of post ACL tear players, but they have a pretty good recent track record.  I literally can’t think of a single player that failed to come back from an ACL tear in the last few years.  Recently the upside has outweighed the draft cost of buying a player coming off an ACL injury.

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Homies, I’m home! Greetings! I come to you live from Kathmandu, at a retreat where other Elder God chosen worshipers come to participate in peyote smoking, animal sacrifice, and some other mind-stimulating activities I’m not at liberty to discuss. Living at this elevation has really helped me clear my head of all negative thoughts and distractions, and if the Elders are correct, this will be the greatest weekend of my Fantasy Football predicting life. Thus far, we’ve discussed “fear of failure” and “radical acceptance”, and all of a sudden, things have become so clear for me; Razzball will go on to become the largest fantasy sports site on the planet and I will ride around our world’s largest cities on an elephant while women throw themselves at my well manicured feet. You’ve got to be realistic about these things.

I am Tehol Beddict and this is Start ‘Em and Sit ‘Em! Take heed!

My rankings have been updated and can be found here.

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Some dude in black hit Steve Smith’s back.  And he was off to a great start this year.  For some reason I wasn’t watching the game last Thursday, I was following it though my Twitter timeline and FantasyCast.  Which I think was something that actually heightened the “experience”.  It meant being flooded with Joe Flacco “elite” Tweets, however.  I mean, when I saw through FantasyCast that Joe Flacco had rushed for zero (or negative) yards on a 4th down play, if I recall, I immediately checked my timeline for the expected barrage of inevitable “Elite Sneak” Tweets.  Like this one:

So how about actually discussing that Steve Smith injury..  Okay.  In due time.  Firstly, I want to remind all of you that I’m ordering this injury discussion from greatest impact to least impact on your fantasy teams.  And Steve Smith’s leading off.  Which is both good and bad.  It’s good that we don’t have a more significant injury this week and bad for all the Steve Smith owners, because he was going to return value over his cost this year.

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I had always thought that spreading the sport of football to Great Britain was seemingly a waste of time. Finally, I can say that the NFL agrees with me. By sending the Jets and Dolphins to London it almost assuredly guarantees that the NFL will spread like frozen butter. Yes, that’s the best I could come up with. On top of having to wake up earlier than normal to start watching football (first world problems), we also have our first bye week to contend with, losing such powerhouse franchises like the Patriots and, uh… the Titans (THEY ARE THE BESTEST FRANCHISE EVER) this weekend. However, there are still some intriguing Early Game match-ups, including the Giants vs. Bills, and Derpfest 2015: Eagles vs. Washington. There’s also a Raiders vs. Bears game, just in case you needed more “stabbing your eyes with the nearest sharp object” in your life. So what I’m basically saying is, my alcohol consumption will be beginning at 9:30 A.M. EDT today. Thanks NFL!

Rankings have been updated for today’s game and you can find them here.

New to Daily Fantasy Football? Try out this new free FanDuel’s contest, where half the league is guaranteed to win. (Played on FanDuel before? You can build a team for $5 for a chance of $100,000, part of a one million dollar prize pool!)

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If you read the title to this post and said to yourself, “Who the heck is Mitchell Friedman”, then I have done my job in selecting a title.

Inspired by perhaps the best sports movie ever, the “Who Are These Guys” series looks back at the previous week and compiles a starting lineup of players that would have your league mates mocking you and your opponent licking his chops as he foolishly commits the bitter offense of counting his chickens before they’ve hatched. While the players selected each week are based entirely on hindsight, the purpose is to show you that every week it is possible to create a lineup that does not contain a single stud, yet said lineup would trample one containing only studs. Duds over studs. Bros before hoes. That’s how it goes…

Please, blog, may I have some more?