Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tidbits from around the league

There's very little of substance going on in the NFL right now, which makes it a good time for me to be on vacation and somewhat negligent with my blog postings. Hey...what do you expect? It's free, isn't it?

But here's a smattering of semi-interesting info for those looking for a fantasy fix:

Ben Roethlisberger has been accused of rape and/or sexual assualt by a hotel employee in Vegas. There's no way at this time to know if this is a legitimate accusation or not, but you can be certain it is indeed a serious distraction for the Super Bowl champ. If you're drafting early, you should think twice about selecting Big Ben. No telling where this will end up.

By contrast, there are lots of positive vibes surrounding Darren McFadden this offseason. After an injury-marred and streaky rookie season, McFadden seems poised to become the lead back in Oakland in '09. It also appears that Michael Bush will get plenty of opportunities to overtake '08 starter Justin Fargas as the primary back-up. I like McFadden a lot at his current ADP (selected 56th in the recent Sporting News Experts Mock Draft).

Brett Favre is expected to make his "comeback" decision by Friday. Yawn.

Don't be surprised if Greg Olsen ends up as a top 5 fantasy TE this year. Chicago is gearing much of its passing game around him, and Jay Cutler's presence gives him a lot of upside, especially as a red-zone weapon.

Lots of speculation out there that Derrick Mason may be pulling a Favre and re-considering his retirement decision already. So perhaps you should put him back on your draft chart, and consider him as a very-late round flier if you're drafting early. is reporting that Brian Westbrook is likely to see fewer carries this season, and his goal-line touches might be reduced as well. He is still recovering from offseason surgery, and FB Leonard Weaver gives the Eagles some hefty options in short-yardage. Think hard before making Westy your #1 pick.

Much like the Favre hype machine, expect to hear a lot about Michael Vick's next NFL destination. The commissioner is expected to rule on his potential reinstatement soon -- perhaps even allowing some kind of probational approval for him to go to some team's training camp -- so the rumor mill will be active with speculation on where he may end up. He is seen as a superb "wildcat" QB, which is essentially what he did prior to his dogfighting arrest. But Vick has rarely been a reliable fantasy contributor, and should be nowhere near your draft board even if a team does take a flier on him.

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