At our rankings summit Mike, Dustin, and myself come prepared with days of work then spend hours going through all players, all the rankings, finding sleepers, and scouting out the busts. We argue over everything – there has been a time where we spent what felt like hours on who should be the 19th ranked Tight End. From these rankings summits and these arguments Dustin and myself have had running bets since that is the only true way to prove a point – put your money where your mouth is. So we thought it would be fun to share just some of the bets that came from this year’s rankings summit and since I am writing the post well, things might be a little one sided – too bad my friend.
NOTE: All bets are based off our FST league scoring (.75 PPR / 4 Point Passing TD) and is who will have a better per game average with a minimum of 10 games played for each player in the bet.
Demaryius Thomas (Brent) vs Eric Decker (Dustin)
When we first made this bet I thought it was a slam dunk for me but in a PPR format I can certainly see why Dustin would pick Decker. Peyton and him have been going to Rockies games together aka “building a repour” – big whoop to do…and he is more of an “established route runner”. (wow that is a SportCenter cliché for White guy huh?) Thomas might not be a slam dunk to win this bet but pretty close to a lay-up still in my mind. Thomas is a game breaker, a 6’ 3” 24 year old who has already shown flashes of monster game potential. Sure Decker might catch more balls than Thomas but scores and big plays will all go to Thomas. Namejko 1 Dustin 0.
Doug Martin (Brent) vs Shonn Greene (Dustin)
I was shocked that Dustin took this bet. The main reason I am a little bit down on Greene is due to Dustin’s man crush – Tim Tebow, if Big Tim Tim (as Dustin likes to call him – I know its creepy) is the “red zone” QB guess who is going to get all the short yardage work in the red zone? On the flip side the Bucs had 53 holes to pretty much fill on their team and they went with a running back in the first round of this year’s NFL draft. In a league that sees undrafted running backs turn into gold (yep I am talking about our boy Foster) all the time, this is a big statement. So I figure Martin gets the start (esp since Blount is apparently not too intelligent and misses his blocking assignments all the time – Mr. Blount if you are reading please do not hunt me down, you are a scary human still) and blows up. True rookie running backs don’t always produce but I think Martin is the exception to the rule. I love his upside and think his ceiling is far greater than Greene’s.
Antonio Gates (Brent) vs Jermichael Finley (Dustin)
Really Dustin??? Really? I am still annoyed that we have Finley ranked over Gates in our rankings – Mike, I am looking at you on this one as well. Gates’ is healthy this year and a healthy Gates is a borderline Jimmy G or Gronk. Now, I understand that health can go away with one foot problem but at least he is the man for the Chargers. Finley on the other hand has to battle with Jennings, Nelson, and everyone’s new favorite sleeper Cobb.
Matt Schaub (Brent) vs Josh Freeman (Dustin)
This one is close to me. The coming back from an injury Schaub against coming off a terrible second year Freeman. Dustin likes Freeman due to his legs and new weapons, I like Schaub as I believe Andre stays healthy and a check down to my boy Foster can go the distance at anytime. For Freeman to win this he will have lower the turnovers which was a major issue for him last year.
Dez Bryant (Brent) vs Jordy Nelson (Dustin)
As stated in the videos these bets came before Dez smacked his Mama. At this point I am nervous about both bets but Dez missed training camp year one due to a holdout, missed training camp year two due to an injury but, this year he is there and playing amazing. A big body with speed/hops is a nice combo and that is exactly what Dez is – mix in Miles always having a hamstring issues and Romo being underrated I think Dez can breakout. Dustin likes Nelson because, well, the guy caught 15 touchdowns last year and looks basically as good as Dez thus far in camp. Dustin is banking on last year, not being a fluke (which is probably wasn’t)
Dez Bryant (Brent) vs Julio Jones (Dustin)
See above for my Dez thoughts – now onto Jones. Jones is a beast and I am going to lose this bet. After seeing him again in the preseason he is a freak of nature in his own right with a great head on his shoulders. In drafts I have seen people take Jones over his teammate Roddy. In a non-ppr league, that is perfectly fine in my book. (I still got a chance for Dez to blow-up…not giving up on this bet totally yet)
Ryan Williams (Brent) vs Beanie Wells (Dustin)
Alright, a man must step out on a limb from time to time and I am calling it now Ryan Williams will take over the job for Beanie and run with it. I am not making a bet due to Wells’ injury history, I am making it because (as Mathew Berry of ESPN said – who I must admit I am a huge fan of) even the coaches of the Cardinals don’t like Beanie Wells. The Cards drafted Williams last year for him to take over the job from Beanie (because he is not that good at football) but Williams got hurt. Well, he is healthy now and I feel the Virginia Tech grad is the more dynamic player (which they will need as both QBs throw like a left handed girl that is throwing right handed) than Wells. Dustin, is taking Wells since he had a good season last year and the incumbent starter – makes sense I suppose…
Fred Davis (Brent) vs Jacob Tamme (Dustin)
I saw improve each game in Davis last season and that was with Rex Grossman throwing him the ball. Enter RGIII, a move to Fullback for Chris Cooley? (not kidding here), an offense that loves to throw the ball and I think we have the mixture for upside here. At USC, Davis was a beast and I think he can turn into Griffs favorite red zone target. Dustin remembers that 2010 season for Tamme where he was the basically the best fantasy TE once Clark went down. So sure, he could have the repour with Peyton immediately but in 2010 he did not have to compete with Joel Dreessen for looks. Dreessen is a great red zone option and Peyton does not play favorites – he plays the game if your open – you get the ball.
Cam Newton Top 5 QB (Brent says no, Dustin says yes)
207 passing yards and 1.1 passing touchdowns a game – does that sound like a top five QBs numbers? Well that is what Newton did the second half of the year. In fact after week four he did not throw for over 300 yards the rest of the year. I admit the rushing yards and rushing touchdowns need to be added in which makes a difference. With that said, I think the yards will be there but I do not see the rushing touchdowns totals to even come close to the 14 he had a season ago. Tolbert is there to take those goal lines looks away from him. Plus I can see Romo, Rivers, Vick, or either Manning having a monster year and jumping him. On the flip side Dustin is banking on those rushing yards to pay off. In most leagues 50 rushing yards would be the same as 125 passing yards (hence his love for Tebow or should I say Big Tim Tim) so it makes sense. On a side note if a league counts 6 points for passing TDs Newton’s value does go down a little as he had a total of 35 touchdowns combined (Matt Ryan had 31 and you can get him 6 rounds later – but again the rush yards do help in any format)