Fantasy Draft Turned Reality

Imagine it’s the fourth quarter and Tom Brady drops back for the pass. He looks to the right, but Percy Harvin is covered, then looks left and hits Greg Jennings in the back of the end zone for the game winning catch and the New York Jets win the 2015 Super Bowl.

Just imagine this crazy scenario taking place.

My proposal is that the NFL or any sport of that matter, should take the popular online game fantasy football game and turn it into a reality.

It can be done just like it’s done online, every team will go into a lottery system where the first team would get the first pick and so on. It would spark a brand new interest in the game of football.

All of those fans who have had years of bad luck can get a brand new jump start with the addition of someone like Cam Newton on their team. There would be a new line of revenue from all of the new players switching teams and the jersey sales would be through the roof.

Things would be a lot different if LeBron ended up somewhere else. New York anyone? Well one could only dream.

Each team would have a hard salary cap to all of them on the same playing grounds when it came to money. There could be rules implemented such as teams using a franchise tag on only one player they want to keep, before the rest go into the fantasy draft.

The options are endless to the fun and excitement of making fantasy football a reality. Coaches could even be thrown into the mix as well, maybe even team announcers, they can make it as entertaining and as crazy as they want.

I know when I watch football sometimes it seems boring watching the same players on the same team year after year. When your team plays Aaron Rodgers they know he is going to dominate and take over the game like always, but what if he was on a team with a bad supporting cast, it would really show if he has the actual ability to still be a superstar quarterback.

 

The world is always changing and people are looking for something new and exciting. I think this would really shake up the world of sports.

Even other sports could attempt a similar fantasy draft like the one that I proposed here. Now that would be something.

Just think the years of pain and anguish of being a Cleveland Browns fan may be over. Think about the cocky and stuck up Los Angeles Lakers fans, they can finally be humbled by having someone other than Kobe Bryant hitting game winning shot after shot for them.

2012 NFL Draft Grades: Round 1

I am going to give my grades for the first round of the 2012 NFL draft! Let’s go!

#1 Colts select: Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford  Grade: A+   This is an easy pick for the Colts here. When you give away Peyton Manning you need to make sure you have someone who can fill his shoes. This kid has the potential to do that.

#2 Redskins select: Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor Grade: A  RG3 better be as advertised. He has the skill and talent to be a star. The Redskins gave up a lot to get this pick. But if you think RG3 is a future star you give up whatever it takes to get him.

#3 Browns select: Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama Grade: B+  The Browns got exactly what they needed here. They needed a play-maker on offensive. They gave up some late picks to get here, but Richardson has Adrian Peterson like potential that you can’t pass up on. The Browns have a lot of needs that they still need to address later in the draft.

#4 Vikings select: Matt Kalil, OT, Southern California Grade: A  Ponder needed protection from his O-line and the Vikings take the best offensive linemen in the country. Helps Ponder and also helps Adrian Peterson. Solid pick here.

#5 Jaguars select: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State Grade: A  The Jaguars move up to take a big time WR. They have had trouble through the air for a number of years. Blackmon will open up the pass game, as well as the run and draw some attention from MJD.

#6 Cowboys select: Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU Grade: A  The Cowboys needed secondary help and they really get it here. I am surprised that Claiborne fell this far. He has the skill set to be a top CB in the NFL. Pair him with Carr the Boys’ off-season pick up and now Rob Ryan can blitz as often and as much as he wants to.

#7 Buccaneers select: Mark Barron, SS, Alabama Grade: B+ Many thought that Barron was going to be picked by the Cowboys, but Claiborne slipped to them. As a result the Bucs’ get the best safety on the board, a need that they needed to fill.

#8 Dolphins select: Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M Grade: C+   The Dolphins miss out on Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn and have to settle with Tannehill. I think this is a huge risk this early in the draft, but Tannehill has the talent to be good.

#9 Panthers select: Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College Grade: A  Kuechly is a tackle machine. Pair that with Jon Beason who is returning off injury and you have a dangerous core of linebackers. Great solid pick, you know what you are going to get with Kuechly. He draws many Brian Urlacher comparisons.

#10 Bills select: Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina Grade: B The Bills had a lot of needs to fill and getting the second best corner in the draft fills one of their needs. They have Mario Williams on the inside and Gilmore on the outside balancing out their defensive attack.

#11 Chiefs select: Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis Grade: C  Poe is a very risky pick for the Chiefs here. The last big man they took Glen Dorsey still has not met his potential. Poe could follow suit of Dorsey. He is big and quick and has the talent, but tends to be too inconstant even against lower talented college teams in the division.

#12 Eagles select: Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State Grade: B- The Eagles move up to grab Cox. He is fills a need for them in the middle and has covers the field from end to end. He is a good big body on the front line that the Eagles needed.

#13 Cardinals select: Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame Grade: B+ He is faster than Blackmon and has the same big play ability as him. His problems come off the field and staying out of trouble. The talent is there to become a great wide-out opposite Larry Fitzgerald. Opposing teams better fear this 1-2 combo.

#14 Rams select: Michael Brockers, DT, LSU Grade: B- The Rams needed help on their D-Line and they address it here. Brockers has the talent, but still has not reached his full potential. He is a pick that fills a need.

#15 Seahawks select: Bruce Irvin, OLB, West Virginia Grade: D  This was the most surprising pick of the draft here. They take a 2nd or 3rd round talent here. Irvin is a speedy pass rusher, but that is about all he is. With a lot of other talented pass rushers on the board this pick is a surprise here.

#16 Jets select: Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina Grade: B  The Jets needed help on the D-Line and that is what they got. Coples has the size, strength and talent to be great. He is not very consistent and does not have a high motor. Rex Ryan is hoping that he could help Coples reach his full potential and not turn into another Vernon Gholston.

#17 Bengals select: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama Grade: B  Kirkpatrick has the tools to be a solid corner. He was once considered a top talent, but his stock dropped as the draft approached. Pair him with Leon Hall and that helps the Bengals secondary where they needed a lot of help.

#18 Chargers select: Melvin Ingram, OLB, South Carolina Grade: B  Ingram was projected to be in the top 10 and the Chargers get good value here. Some question his size and arm length, but Ingram plays with a high motor and can play almost any position on the field.

#19 Bears select: Shea McClellin, OLB, Boise State Grade: B–  The Bears grab a solid linebacker here. They would’ve went DE to add another dynamic pass pusher along side Julius Pepper, but they take the LB. Either way the Bears needed help on defense and they get it.

#20 Titans select: Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor Grade: B  Wright gives the Titans the big play receiver that they need. They have a young QB who now has two young WR’s to throw to in Kenny Britt and Kendall Wright. Wright is a home run type receiver that adds another piece to the Titans offense.

#21 Patriots select: Chandler Jones, DE, Syracuse Grade: A-   The Patriots will take all of the help on defense that they can get. Jones has top 10 type talent and the Patriots trade up to get him here. He is strong and has good vision that will help him at the next level.

#22 Browns select: Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State Grade: C+  The 28-year-old has a skill set to be a good NFL QB in the league. He beat RG3 and Luck head to head, but you have to think that his age only gives him about 5-7 years in the league. Take that plus he has to win the QB job and has to produce right away.

#23 Lions select: Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa Grade: A  One of the top OL in the draft. He was a projected top 15 pick and the Lions get him here at #23 pick. He fills a much-needed for the Lions and can give Mathew Stafford some time to breathe.

#24 Steelers select: David DeCastro, OG, Stanford Grade: A  When it comes to drafting linemen the Steelers are the best. They take the former lineman for Andrew Luck here. The Steelers always build their teams from the inside out and this pick proves just that.

#25 Patriots select: Dont´a Hightower, ILB, Alabama Grade: C+  The Patriots traded up once again to take Hightower. He really doesn’t have a set position and could be undersized depending where he would lineup on defense. He still has the skill set to produce at the next level.

#26 Texans select: Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois Grade: C+  Mercilus had a big 2011 season that really raised his draft stock. He has the athletics and the high motor, but still lacks the technique and finesse you want in a DE.

#27 Bengals select: Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin Grade: B  The Bengals get some help on the offensive line here. Zeitler is a tough, player between the trenches. He has the work ethic and is good against both the run and the pass.

#28 Packers select: Nick Perry, DE, Southern California Grade: C+  Perry is undersized for his position and sometimes get lost among larger tackles. That being said he still is fast and has the quickness you would want in a DE. There were some better option still on the board such as Courtney Upshaw.

#29 Vikings select: Harrison Smith, SS, Notre Dame Grade: B+  The Vikings get the second best SS in the draft. A big hitter with a big frame. They need a lot of help in the secondary and this was a good pick to fill the void. Smith was the captain on Notre Dame and the Vikings need a captain to step up in their defense.

#30 49ers select: A.J. Jenkins, WR, Illinois Grade: B–  Jenkins has the speed to open up the 49ers offense. He gives the opposing defensive something to worry about other than Frank Gore. Any wide receiver would be an upgrade over what they have now.

#31 Buccaneers select: Doug Martin, RB, Boise State Grade: B+  Martin is a good pick and good compliment to Legarrett Blount. He is tough between the tackles and has the explosivness to still get to the next level. I think this is the 2nd of two solid picks for the Buccaneers in this draft.

#32 Giants select: David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech Grade: B  With Brandon Jacobs now with the 49ers the Giants took no time to replace him. They would’ve went many different ways with this pick such as an a linebacker or offensive linemen, but the Giants get another home run hitter to go with Ahmad Bradshaw.

2016 update: I regret my #2, #3 and #15 grades, but the rest aren’t too bad.

Still America’s Pastime?

As the years come and go things change. Some for the better and some for the worst. When it comes to sports, players and coaches always come and go. One thing that will never change is the past.

It has always been said that baseball is America’s pastime. The word pastime is a word that means, doing something fun, amusing and it usually something that is done as a hobby.

Many people like to argue that football is the new pastime of America. I will tell you that baseball is still America’s pastime today and it will always be Americas pastime even in the future. Football has only been around about 50 years and is recently becoming popular in the United States.

Baseball is a sport that has been around for more than 100 years and was around before people even knew what a football was or who Peyton Manning is.

There are many reasons why baseball will never be replaced as America’s pastime. The first one is because of the atmosphere of coming to a ball game. When you come to a baseball park you are there to watch a sport that is like a piece of art. The movement and the flow of the game from inning to inning is nothing compared to any other sport. There is no time limit or clock to stop a  baseball game, it can go on for as long as it takes someone to win.

There is nothing better than going to the ball park with your family or friends during a sunny, breezy afternoon. When you attend a football game it is in the cold, frigid days of the winter.

No one wants to sit outside in the cold, snowing weather to watch a game. Baseball starts right when Spring does and it welcomes the warm weather and fans to the ball park.

The football season is only 16 games long. While a baseball season is 162 games. Let’s say your favorite football team starts off the season 0-7, you know right then and there it will almost be impossible for your team to make the playoffs. All of that money you spent on season tickets are all to waste. When your favorite baseball team starts off 0-7 they will eventually turn their bad luck around.

There is no way a team can lose 162 games, well we haven’t seen one yet.  Football tickets are far too overpriced as a result of a 16 game schedule. You can arrive at a baseball game the day of the game and purchase ticket that aren’t too expensive.

Many argue that football is the more exciting sport to watch. I may have to agree with that point, but football is on the same lines of UFC and boxing. Instead of two people fighting it is two teams going back and forth trying to tackle and stop the other team. Baseball is a much more relaxing, family welcoming type of game.

When you come to a ball park on a summer night you can sit back, relax and even read the newspaper as you watch the game. Football doesn’t have that same welcoming feel as baseball does when you arrive to the stadium.

Finally, baseball is a much harder game to play than football. Argue this as you may, but trying to hit an 95 mph baseball coming right at you is nearly impossible, not to mention pitches that are sliders and curve balls that move around and make it even harder to hit. Being able to throw and locate a pitch is just as hard as hitting. In football there are certain positions that are so easy to play.

It really doesn’t take much talent to be an offensive line man or even a punter. Baseball is a game of finesse and overall skill. These players have to play almost every day during the baseball season, that is no easy task. Football players, granted it is a far more physical sport, have a week off during each game.

It’s hard for a sport to claim that they are the new pastime of America. I don’t think any sport will ever claim that spot. Football maybe the most popular in America now, due to ratings. That still doesn’t make it a America’s pastime. Baseball is and will always remain America’s pastime.

Best Fantasy Sport to Play?

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I know how it feels when your favorite sports team is constantly losing. It’s not fun and very frustrating. Sitting there yelling at the television, saying that everyone on the team should be fired is an everyday occurrence.

Every sport fan out there thinks that they can run a team better than the management  in place now. Well, actually, now you can run your own team.

In the mid 1990’s fantasy sports were created and every sports fan dream came true. Fans were now able to draft players from the NFL, NBA, NHL, NCAA, NASCAR, and even golf. Fans are now able to run a team however they wish. They could set line-ups, drop players, pick up new ones and execute trades.

But which fantasy sport is the top of the bunch?

The most popular fantasy sport is football. Fantasy football is by far the easiest one to play.

All you need to do is set your lineup once a week and your team is set. For me, fantasy football is the most frustrating. You might have the most dominant team on paper, but your opponent can get lucky for that week and beat you. Trust me, you will never live it down either, especially if you’re in a league with your close friends, or people at work.

The next two popular fantasy sports after fantasy football, are fantasy hockey and fantasy baseball.

These two are pretty similar.

Fantasy baseball and fantasy hockey  take a lot more of your time, especially if you are in a league where you need to set your lineups daily.

Instead of one game, a weekend, and a winner you have a full week of games (almost everyday). Now, in case your team has a slow start, they can make up for it later in the week. The roster in fantasy hockey and fantasy baseball is a lot deeper, and there are a lot more spots to fill on your team. Managers really need to know all of the players and the potential breakouts who could help their team.

Well then… who is the (fantasy) winner?

For the busy, casual sports fan I would say fantasy football is your choice. Don’t get me wrong, fantasy football is pretty intense because every game matters and that one lose can hurt your season.

I think that the best fantasy sport has to go to both baseball and hockey. Obviously, if your only a hockey fan or only a baseball fan, and not both, then you have your own personal winner.

So next time your yelling at your computer screen or phone, and your fantasy team is losing, the only one you can blame is… yourself.

Tebow Time

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(2016 update: Tim Tebow never got his chance at QB with the Jets; he is still the man).

It is Tebow time.

When the Jets were about to have an under the radar off-season for the first time in forever. They still somehow manage to land the biggest name in, well if not in football, but in all of the sports.

The Jets acquired Tim Tebow for a 4th and 6th round pick in the 2012 NFL draft. A low-risk move for a former playoff quarterback and a proven winner.

So what does this all mean, was it a good trade or was it a trade just to stir up some headlines.

Let’s look at it like this, as a Jets fan I am content with what Mark Sanchez has done, but am not satisfied. He has taken the Jets to two AFC title games but has lost them both. Outside fans and analysis all say that Sanchez is young, and Jet fans should be grateful for him to have taken them that far.

But what about Ben Rothlisberger for example, he won the Superbowl in his second year in the league. So there is no justice when someone says to be grateful for what Mark Sanchez has done.

Let’s talk about Tebow.

There is no denying that he is as genuine and as hard working as they come. I would have to imagine what coach would not want someone like that on their team.

What I don’t get is that people say, oh Tebow he’s a good man, but he doesn’t have the mechanics or the by the book type delivery to be successful. All that matters in the NFL are winning, it doesn’t matter how you do it, but as Herm Edwards said, “You play to win the game.”

Many argue that Tebow should just switch to a different position because he is obviously not able to be a quarterback. Tebow won both the National Championship and the Heisman as a quarterback; it is evident that the kid has some talent.

Was it all worth it?

I think it is a win, win for the Jets. If Mark Sanchez struggles for another year in a row then he deserves to get replaced, the NFL is a competition. If someone is incapable of leading your team to anything short of a Championship then they should be replaced, simple as that. Last time I checked, the Jets haven’t been in the Superbowl since 1969, the Joe Willy Namath days.

Will Tebow be starting at some point this season? Who knows? I think if Sanchez struggles, without a doubt No. 15 deserves to be under center. We will have wait and see and see how the Tebow story unfolds.