And the award goes to ...
By Victor Balta
The midpoint of the season is a good time to take a step back and dole out some awards for the biggest players of the fantasy football season.
There' also have been some surprises that deserve recognition, so let's get started:
Looking at the top performers, it's easy to see that Daunte Culpepper and Peyton Manning are tearing up the NFL, and chances are good that whoever has them in your league is posting a winning season.
But since they've been so neck-and-neck, you've got to look at consistency to name one over the other. By that standard, Manning is the clear winner.
Sure, Culpepper has thrown for five touchdowns in three different games. But he only has five touchdowns in the other four games the Vikings have played.
He's obviously not a bad fantasy QB, but at this point we're comparing the best of the best.
Manning, by comparison, has thrown for five touchdowns twice this season, but also hasn't had a single game with less than two scoring passes.
Also, he's only tossed four interceptions and never fumbled, while Culpepper has seven turnovers.
The surprise quarterback of the year, so far, has to be Drew Brees. Highlighted by his own five-TD performance last week - he's the only QB other than Culpepper and Manning to do it - Brees, who wasn't even considered the Chargers' starter at the beginning of the year, has shocked everyone.
Having failed to score only once, and failing to reach 100 total yards just once this season, Priest Holmes is the obvious choice for top running back.
So the real discussion is about who is the biggest surprise. And since they call the same stadium home, we can split the award between the Giants' Tiki Barber and the Jets' Curtis Martin.
Both are having arguably their best seasons ever, with Barber in his eighth year and Martin in his 10th.
Barber, who only scored three touchdowns last season, already has seven. And after losing six fumbles in each of the last two years, he hasn't lost any in 2004. He's also posted 1,100 total yards in the first half of the year.
Martin also scored just twice last season and already has eight TDs this year. Both players are proving to be great finds for their fantasy owners, who likely scooped them up sometime after the first two rounds.
With Randy Moss missing the past two games with a hamstring injury, the two-horse race goes to Philadelphia's Terrell Owens.
He's helped ignite the Eagles offense and made them the only remaining undefeated team in the NFL. Fantasy owners aren't missing out on the benefits.
Owens has scored in all but one game, and even that week he racked up 123 receiving yards.
The biggest surprise of the season is Green Bay's Javon Walker. After a couple of seasons anointing him as the next big thing, Walker is finally proving it, although his consistency leaves a little to be desired.
When he's high, he's really high. But when he's low, well, you get it.
Walker has reached 100 yards four times, and hit 200 yards one of those times. He also has seven touchdowns - three in that 200-yard game. But in the other games, he's caught for just 37 yards twice, 57 and 67.
Columnist Victor Balta: 425-339-3455 or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
This was in the paper this morning. Just thought I would share.