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Fantasy gods smile on some, smite others

Posted by Ladd Biro  December 10, 2012 06:57 PM

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Bryce Brown giveth, and Bryce Brown taketh away.

Just when it appeared that the explosive rookie would carry his ecstatic owners to the Promised Land, Brown put up a stinker of epic proportions.  With just 12 combined yards on 14 touches, the Eagles’ tailback couldn’t blame an injury; and he didn’t even lose a fumble.  He simply got bottled up by the Buccaneers’ defense and, with that, doomed countless fantasy teams to an early exit.

Then again, if you teamed him with Marshawn Lynch – who needed just 11 touches to generate 128 yards and a TD hat trick – you probably survived.  Add in the sucker punching of the Cardinals by the Seahawks defense (eight turnovers, three sacks, two defensive scores and a shutout) for good measure, and Brown’s implosion was a mere speed bump on your road to victory.

The first weekend of the 2012 fantasy postseason also featured stellar performances from Cam Newton, Adrian Peterson, Knowshon Moreno, Mike Wallace, Danario Alexander and several others. 

But those counting on heroics from Chris Johnson, C.J. Spiller, Larry Fitzgerald, Torrey Smith and just about any top-flight tight end were sorely disappointed.  Even the great A.J. Green let down his team, and his owners, with just 44 receiving yards and an inconceivable drop of a sure-fire touchdown pass.

A rash of injuries to Robert Griffin III (knee), Jay Cutler (neck), Fred Jackson (leg), Ahmad Bradshaw (knee), Dwayne Bowe (ribs), Jared Cook (shoulder), Brent Celek (concussion) and Brandon Pettigrew (ankle) could have ramifications for many teams in crunch time, reminding us why it’s essential to have depth at every position if your goal is a championship.

Indeed, the fantasy gods can be generous, and they can be cruel.  Just ask Bryce Brown.


FREE AGENT PICKS AND PANS

To win a fantasy championship, it helps to start with a great draft. But filling in your roster throughout the season with the right free agents is also important. Here's a look at players worth considering for your championship run, and one who would look better in someone else's lineup.

Catch ‘em while you can

David Wilson, RB, Giants.  The rookie speedster had his long-awaited coming-out party with 100 yards and 2 TDs on the ground, punctuated by a 98-yard kickoff return score.  Wilson will surely get more opportunities to dazzle, especially if Ahmad Bradshaw’s balky knee continues to limit him.

Kenny Britt, WR, Titans.  If yours is one of the 30 percent of leagues in which Britt is a free agent, grab him.  He’s on a stellar three-game roll, with a very favorable schedule laid out before him.

Don’t be fooled

Anthony McCoy, TE, Seahawks.  The first Seattle receiver to accumulate 100 receiving yards in a game this season, McCoy made his mark in a contest in which his team scored 58 points.  Look for his second 100-yard performance the next time Seattle breaks the half-century mark.

Originally published on the blog Fantasy Fools.

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About the author

Ladd Biro was named 2010 "Football Writer of the Year" by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. Ladd's nationally syndicated columns have appeared in more than 20 publications -- including the Dallas Morning News, San Francisco Chronicle, Philadelphia Inquirer, Chicago Sun-Times and Sporting News magazine -- since 2003. During the NFL season, he can be heard nationwide on Sporting News Radio as host of the weekly "Fantasy Files" program, dispensing his unique blend of wit and wisdom. Since 2009, all his written fantasy content can be found on the Fantasy Fools blog.

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