Wednesday, April 30, 2008

NFL Draft Wrap-up

I'm currently in the sweet spot in between two library conferences; today I'm in D.C., tomorrow I'll be in Chicago. Unfortunately, conferences don't really lend themselves to a whole lot of time to blog and review the draft from last weekend...so I'm just getting around to posting some links to draft wrap-up now. And what's better than draft wrap-up? Rookie rankings. So read on for all sorts of football goodness.

  • Rotoworld's 2008 Dynasty Rookie Ranks - a list that is sure to change over the course of the next few months, but enjoy this quiet start to the 2008 fantasy football season.
  • Fantasy Football Goat's Eight NFL Rookies Poised for an Instant Fantasy Impact in 2008. As a D.C. native, I'm personally hoping it might be one of the two Redskins WRs that makes the biggest rookie impact this year.
  • Or try NFL.com's Fantasy spin: The top 10 fantasy rookies for 2008. Will Chicago have found the rookie sleeper of the year with RB Matt Forte?
  • Interested in rankings now that the draft results are in? Peruse FF Xtreme's frequently updated rankings page with dynasty and redraft rankings both by position and overall top 200.
  • Check out FFToolbox.com's Fantasy Football NFL Depth Charts for each team - keep in mind these might differ from the actual team depth charts but are a nice tool for fantasy footballers.
  • And finally, for those who are looking for a mock draft, try FF Xtreme's 2008 Draft Simulator. Remember, a mock draft can be really helpful in giving you some insight on where different players might get drafted - such as which players are hot, or which players might be overrated or underrated. Great preparation for your 2008 fantasy football draft.

This blog might be quiet for a few more days while I attend my next library conference - at this one I will actually be presenting on fantasy football in libraries (yes, seriously) so it should be an interesting weekend. I'll be back soon though with even more draft and rookie analysis - and new links to rankings and team previews. The season is really starting to ramp up now and dormant fantasy football sites are coming back to life - I for one couldn't be more excited.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

NFL Draft quickly approaching

With the NFL Draft just a few days away, it's hard to find a football site that focuses on anything but the draft. But check out the links below for some draft and non-draft news around the league. I will be on an airplane during the draft as I head off to a library conference in Washington, D.C., and at first I thought all hope was lost for watching rounds one and two. Until I remembered that I'll be flying the best airline ever - Frontier - and they have Direct TV access to ESPN. I'm so money.

So onto football updates:

  • If you're in the market for draft analysis, you're obviously in the right place. Try Football Jabber's Top 10 CB Prospects for a look at this year's cornerback class.
  • The Hazean has put together a mock draft with a bunch of football fans and bloggers drafting for their favorite teams; not surprisingly, I drafted for the Broncos. The Hazean is posting the draft a little at a time - check out picks 1-5 of the mock draft here and picks 6-10 here.
  • Check out FF Toolbox.com's Top Prospects for 2008 NFL Draft. Few fantasy sites do as thorough of a job with the NFL Draft as FF Toolbox does.
  • Some non-draft info is actually out there! FF Xtreme has an early look at the 2008 IDP rankings in their Got IDP Rankings? article, with the top 20 guys at DL, DB and LB.
  • Stay updated on all fantasy football news with The Huddle's Priority News section - see how Willie Parker is faring in the offseason and why the Colts might be looking to draft an RB a little higher than original planned.
  • I know how the Redskins would love to get their hands on Chad Johnson - just doesn't look like it's going to happen...
I'll try to get a post up later this week with any last minute draft links you might want to get your hands on. I may be a little MIA after that though until early May - I will be going to back-to-back library conferences (presenting on fantasy football at one of them!) and may have limited time for blogging. But I'll do what I can - there will be a lot to report on after the draft is over!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Time to Pencil in Your Football Plans

The 2008 NFL schedules have been released, my football friends. I'm sure you are all eagerly penciling in your favorite match-ups and - if you're like me - thinking about which games you're going to have to miss due to mandatory wedding attendance requirements (note to self: remember not to tell your sister how you'll really need Internet access to set your fantasy lineup over the weekend of her wedding; might not go over well that Frank Gore's performance could weigh more heavily on my mind than her nuptials).

Haven't had a chance to see the schedules yet? Find 'em here at NFL.com. And sure, there are probably tons of journalists (and sports enthusiasts) eagerly spewing forth their thoughts on the best match-ups - for a taste of something different, turn to Cold, Hard Football Facts for a fresh slant with The dogs of war.

Other items to check out this week include:

  • The guys over at Sports Data Hub are putting together a team-by-team analysis of draft needs - check out their Blog section for all the write-ups thus far.
  • Chad Johnson maintains he wants nothing to do with the Bengals...
  • I may be alone on this one here, but when I saw Gregg Rosenthal's Research Idea post, I started to salivate. When combined, the words "research" and "football" are simply irresistible, to borrow a phrase from Robert Palmer. I've got a few library conferences on the docket over the next few weeks, but once those are over I may just try my hand at this research idea of his.
  • Sports Grumblings has some interesting thoughts up in Small Hype, Big Hopes on some of the lower profile moves during free agency.
  • Check out the Huddle's Running Backs and Teams that Need Them - a note for those of you in an office or other such setting, this is a video.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Mock NFL Draft & Other Football Info

I'm part of a mock NFL draft that The Hazean is putting together - I will be drafting for the Broncos in just a few more days and am waiting patiently as those ahead of me in in the draft make their selections (we each have a 12 hour window). I already have some pretty solid thoughts on the positions and players that I think the Broncos need most, but if there are any big Broncos fans out there that would like to put their two cents in, please feel free to comment below with your thoughts.

More info from the football world:

  • Speaking of the Broncos, will DJax be coming on over to Denver? Check out the Denver Post's Two Wide Receivers Attract Denver's Eye for more info.
  • I've become a bit of PDF snob - whenever I see something is available in PDF, I immediately assume it must be cooler and better. Terrible logic, yes, but this actually holds true for the Official 2007 NFL Statistics PDF available from Cold, Hard Football Facts. If you had told me last August that the Top Ten Rushers for the 2007 season would include The Edge and Jamal Lewis, I would've called you a liar.
  • One of my favorite sites, Fantasy Football Xtreme (so extreme they don't need that extra E), has redesigned their site a bit - take a look around and check out their Fantasy Football Player Spotlights. Nice work, Xtreme; I like the new site.
More to come later this week!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Yea for Kansas and Football Stuff

Congrats to Kansas players and fans on your victory last night - as someone who basically had no rooting interest left, I'm just pleased that it was a fun game to watch. I will admit though that the vast majority of my night was spent chatting with friends who came over to enjoy the game. When compared to our Super Bowl gathering of friends, the difference between my game focus with football and basketball is somewhat startling. Funny how I become a crazed maniac during football season who can hardly hold a conversation with guests that isn't punctuated by some commentary on the game or my fantasy teams...last night was so refreshing. Clearly my friendships needed the break from football season.

But onto football news:

  • The Jags signed David Garrard until 2014. Does that freak out anyone else? Not from the Garrard angle (though that could be a whole different topic) but I mean 2014? I can hardly even fathom the idea of 2010 being a mere two years away. 2014 is hard to wrap my mind around. If that's not mind-blowing for you, try this one on for size: next year's college freshman were born in 1990. I think it's official: I'm slowly turning into one of those crotchety old people that comments on how young today's kids are.
  • To continue the quarterback news - Jack Delhomme is throwing his first real football since week 3 of the 2007 season. I've commented on this before, but wow, I wouldn't touch Delhomme with a ten foot pole come fantasy draft time. I kind of like it when my QB has actually been handling a football all year long. Has anyone noticed who Delhomme's backups are by the way? Oh yeah, baby, my fellow Northwestern alum Brett Basanez is poised and ready to go. Basanez was on IR last season with a hand injury, hence why he wasn't part of the rotating QB fun in Carolina last year. Since I remain unconvinced that Delhomme will be in good shape for the whole 2008 season, I'm crossing my fingers for a little Basanez action.
  • Cold, Hard Football Facts has been providing a team-by-team analysis for all 32 NFL teams - check out their work so far at Team-by-team previews: the list.
  • In preparation for the upcoming NFL Draft, Rotoworld is doing a week long look at various team needs. First up, Team Needs: AFC East and North.
  • And don't forget The Huddle's pre-draft prep; read on for team needs and fantasy implications starting with NFL Draft: Team Needs - NFC West.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Off-field news and NFL draft prep

I'm living in a bit of mayhem right now - two humans, two cats and a dog in 800 square feet. The dog is a temporary addition for the week to help a friend who is out of town, and while she's a great dog, I definitely feel like my life is being ruled by maintaining harmony among animals right now. Our zoo of a family was enjoying some local news last night (I'm a sucker for as much local weather coverage as one human can possibly take in), when I heard about Jay Cutler's tough love for Brandon Marshall. While I think the story was a bit blown out of proportion in the Denver media at least, I do love to see football news in early April. For more updates on stories that might actually matter to fantasy footballers, check out Rotoworld's What you've been missing. Love seeing Tony Scheffler's name there; I guess it's official - Scheff is my new favorite Bronco now that Jason Elam has moved on to the Falcons.

Other football thoughts:

  • Wondering what the pros and cons are of drafting LT in the top 2 for the 2008 season? FF Xtreme has you covered in Fantasy Football Dilemma: LaDainian Tomlinson.
  • NFL Draft speculation is of course running high - check out the NYT's Fifth Down blog for thoughts on how the Dolphins should be spending their time over the next few weeks.
  • FF Toolbox has a quick list of this year's 3rd Year Wide Receivers - which of these players will break out in 2008?
  • Football Outsiders continues to crank out the good stuff with Four Downs: AFC North.
  • Next week I will be participating in a mock NFL draft (just one round) with The Hazean and I will be drafting on behalf of the Broncos. There are a bunch of other football bloggers involved and should be a good time - check out The Hazean's site for follow-up and other general quality football info.
  • Apparently I can't take my own FF advice when it comes to creating a bracket for the NCAA tourney. I committed one of the worst types of errors one could make - never, ever put your personal team or player preferences first in these sorts of scenarios. I picked the Final Four of my bracket based on which schools I had a familial connection to...as in, my sister went to Stanford so I threw my support behind the Cardinal and had them going to the Final Four. And how did that work out for me? Um, not one of my Final Four teams is still standing. Apparently my family members need to start attending schools with better basketball programs. Next year I vow to be far more ruthless with my bracket. So consider this a reminder that just because you have a man-crush (or in my case, just a crush) on a player, you do not (and likely should not) need to draft him. Or else you'll end up like my poor friend Ethan who can't get over his love for Marc Bulger and Steven Jackson, drafts them every year, and paid for it in 2007.
Wish me luck with my brood of animals this week. More football links soon!