Before I go into the Busts for week eight, I wanted to touch base and take umbrage with our fantasy colleagues over at CBS Sports Fantasy. They do solid work no doubt, but I was pretty disturbed by their tact in regards to Carolina Panthers TE Greg Olsen recently. After a quiet performance a few weeks ago, CBS entered in their individual player update report “Olsen Disappears Yet Again”. On the surface, yes he did. It was not exactly a banner outing put forth by Olsen and I get it. However, to completely disregard the reason why his performance may have been the last thing on his mind was insensitive, ignorant and infuriating. For those not aware, ESPN ran a story of what Olsen and his wife Kara are dealing with in regards to their yet unborn son, one of twins they are expecting. During standard prenatal testing, it was revealed that their baby girl was healthy, but something was not right with their son. Apparently doctors detected a life threatening heart defect that required en utero surgery. This folks, is heavy stuff.
See the video here - http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/64363/video-greg-olsens-personal-pain
So excuse the guy just a bit if he’s a little sidetracked, regardless of the football or fantasy implications. Alert the media, but there are personal issues that sometimes find their way into our everyday activities and the end result is sometimes affected. I think fantasy owners from coast to coast could possibly relate and most certainly understand, no?
Does the crew at CBS Fantasy mention any of this? Nah, we’ll just chastise him for a subpar performance, being the professionals they claim to be. Class act indeed, real class. Not even a mention along the lines of his (now take notes guys, just in case…) “preoccupation being understandable and the thoughts of the CBS fantasy community being with Greg and his family during this difficult time.” Simple right?
Nope. Just that he disappeared yet again.
Look, this is a great hobby and it is a world of fun. But it is a game played by real live human beings who have real issues just like you and me. They can get sidetracked just like any of us would on the job. Olsen has a REAL reason to be sidetracked.
My wish is CBS Fantasy and their generic so-called cookie-cutter “experts” and their resulting mindless babble would do the disappearing act. That is at least until they achieved a little understanding and humility. Wise up, guys. Just because you traded in the ridiculous backwards baseball caps a couple of years ago for the sport coats doesn’t mean you can forget what is really important in life. Because two receptions for 37 yards against the Seattle Seahawks in week six really isn’t that pressing when you consider the ordeal that Greg and his family are grappling with at the present time.
Godspeed, Greg, Kara and a little fighter they named TJ. Go get ‘em kid. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Ok, now that I got that off my chest, and will undoubtedly never get work at CBS…. Ever. Let’s take a gander at some potential Busts for Week 8!
QB Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers – Like I said on the FP911 Hangout on Google+ this past Tuesday night, Cam is having the terrible season I boldly predicted for Redskins rookie QB Robert Griffin III. Newton is having a dickens of a time getting it together in 2012 and now faces a defensively solid Chicago Bears team. Safe to say I am not entirely confident he straightens things out this weekend.
QB Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions – After getting pushed around a bit by the aforementioned Chicago Bears, Stafford and the Lions face another solid defensive unit in the Seattle Seahawks. Granted Stafford has the skills to rise above regardless of opponent, but he has yet to prove that this season. Combine that with a dinged up WR Calvin Johnson and WR Nate Burleson on the IR with the broken leg, the battle could be of the uphill variety. I’d look to another option at quarterback this week if you have the luxury.
RB Michel Turner, Atlanta Falcons – This is a game that will be played more through the air as opposed to on the ground. Fear not RB LeSean McCoy owners, he actually catches passes out of the backfield. Turner on the other hand, does not. All that aside, the Eagles are much better in 2012 against the run than in year’s past so all in all, Turner could be in for a quiet afternoon.
RB Pierre Thomas, New Orleans Saints – Yet again he is risen in the fantasy conscience due to his late game touchdown during Brees-Fest last week against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That said, he is not reliable enough to be a week in and week out starter in fantasy circles. I also question his ability to be effective against the Broncos in Mile High.
RB Shonn Greene or Joe McKnight, New York Jets – Even if you didn’t take the fact that both of these guys rush for under three yards per carry I’d be low because the matchup against the Dolphins dictates. Miami is just lights out against the run, so it could be a long, unproductive and frustrating day for the Jets running game as a whole.
RB LeRod Stephens-Howling, Arizona Cardinals – I will preface this by saying he put up a stellar performance last week against the Minnesota Vikings, gouging them for over a hundred yards on the ground. With that in mind, the proverbial carriage turns back into a pumpkin this week folks. The 49ers are a top unit against the run, and they’ll prove it this week.
RB Mikel LeShoure, Detroit Lions – He ran hard against the Chicago Bears, despite the fumble. Not sure you can really blame him, the effort was there trying to break the plane for a touchdown. However this week the sledding gets tough again against the Seahawks. With the bye weeks he is a decent starting option for fantasy owners, but keep expectations low.
WR Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers – As is always the case, when the quarterback suffers, the receivers will in turn share the a portion of the misery. Until QB Cam Newton gets things straightened out, I would steer clear of Smith, WR Brandon LaFell and any of the Panthers receivers. When you Couple that with the unpredictability of the running game, you aren’t left with a very fantasy-friendly situation at all.
WR Malcom Floyd, San Diego Chargers – This could be another week that WR Robert Meachem emerges, as I can see Cleveland CB Joe Haden putting Floyd on lock down and the touchdown drought to continue. It should be quite a battle between the two nevertheless.
WR Devery Henderson, New Orleans Saints – It is pretty simple. Henderson has a nice performance, fantasy sites go crazy and recommend this guy as a hot waiver wire pick up and flex option. Fact is, due to the glut of talent at the receiver position for the Saints, inconsistency is the name of the game for a secondary option in New Orleans. It is not a shot at him from a talent perspective, it’s just that there is one ball, and a plethora of capable receivers. Someone has to be left out and after last week’s emergence, my guess this week it is Henderson back to mediocrity.
WR Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City Chiefs – When teams start bumbling mediocrity at the quarterback position, other skill players who rely on the absence of ineptitude will undoubtedly suffer. In this case we have the new starting quarterback for the Chiefs, one Brady Quinn. That sound you hear is Bowe groaning and it will only get louder once the fantasy owners starting Bowe this weekend join in.
TE Marcedes Lewis, Jacksonville Jaguars – Truthfully, I am on the fence with this one. Lewis is a big quality option, but the questions at quarterback render him useless more often than not. That said, with starting QB Blaine Gabbert not playing this weekend and former Miami Dolphins signal caller Chad Henne behind center in his place, Lewis might, just might prove this bust moniker wrong.
TE Jacob Tamme, Denver Broncos – Why I keep seeing him consistently ranked ahead of teammate TE Joel Dreessen is beyond me. I know about the whole history thing, ex-Colt receiver joining ex-Colt gunslinger, but I don’t see it. Right now inside the ten, the ex-Colt gunslinger is looking for an ex-Texan in Dreessen.
Have a great week!
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