I must have be using the word "star" wrong because a lot of these guys are pretty average... Movin' on...
Ashley Lelie v. Donte Stallworth
Stallworth amazingly found a way to injure his hammy when Lelie illegally piledrived him onto the mat (his neck was peachy, though). Lelie took full advantage and used a figure four lock on him for the victory via tap-out.
I haven't watched wrasslin' in a while - is that right?
Anyway... I'm not a fan of Donte Stallworth at all. He'll injure his hammy while napping. He's a speedy d00d, but I have absolutely no confidence in him whatsoever. You can't gain the fantasy pointage if you're on the sideline nursin' something. I wouldn't be surprised if he finds his way buried on New Orleans depth chart behind Joe Horn, Jerome Pathon, and Devery Henderson. Even if he does pan out, I'm almost as scared of New Orleans potential for a pathetic offense as I am with Denver's.
Ashley Lelie started looking decent before Jake Plummer went down. I still think that Rod Smith is the man in Denver, but Lelie could be someone to watch out for. I'm still going to avoid Denver's entire offense, though - it's just not lookin' good, methinks.
Justin McCareins v. Jerry Porter
I'd rather have McCareins, but 99.9% of the time, someone will have already grabbed him before I think he's due to be picked (like David Boston or Kevan Barlow). I think he has just a good a shot at being the #1 WR in New York as Santana Moss does. They're both big play guys. S. Moss was shut down when defenses started focusing on him towards the end of last season - they'll have to leave someone open this year, and whoever that is will be the beneficiary of some nice fantasy pointage.
If the Oakland offense can get their stuff together, Jerry Porter could turn out to be the steal of a lot of drafts. He goes fairly late, so acquiring him shouldn't be a problem if you're determined to do so. I just don't like the Raiders offense, though - he has the potential to be a top 15 WR, but I wouldn't bet on him, or worse yet, draft him based on that.
Either way, I wouldn't want either as anything more than a backup - MAYBE a #3 WR if I'm looking rather studly at other positions.
Kevin Jones v. Julius Jones
Kevin Jones is in an offense that has potential to be a good one - in 2005. Next year, I'm expecting them to be about the same as last - a fantasy wasteland. The Lions have been near the bottom of the league in rushing for years now and I don't think that K. Jones is the answer. Plus, with Artose Pinner being a fairly quality RB, I'm thinkin' it's going to be a RBBC in Detroit.
Julius Jones has far more potential in '04, methinks. He was very underrated in college - he put up some very nice numbers with a supporting cast that's comparable to my high school football team. He has the talent to be an NFL RB, methinks. He also has no competition for the job - unless you think Aveion Cason has been wasted the last few years. Even if Eddie George is brought in - unless Julius really disappoints - I can't see him being much more than a veteran mentor to Julius and taking only a few carries. I don't like predicting stats for rookies, but if Troy Hambrick could put up 972 rushing yards and 5 TDs, Julius SHOULD
be able to top that.
Steve Smith v. Santana Moss
The only Moss I want on my team is named Randy. I wouldn't mind having Santana on my team, but with where he's going in most drafts - I don't feel comfortable drafting him that early. Like I mentioned with Justin McCareins, Santana just disappeared when defenses started focusing on him - I think either Santana or McCareins could be the #1 and I don't want to spend an early round pick on a questionable guy like Santana.
Steve Smith is another guy I'd be a little worried about, but I like him nonetheless. He is the Panthers receiving game and I think he'll do fine. He performed well since he emerged and I don't think that's going to change anytime soon.
Darrell Jackson v. Derrick Mason
Last year was odd for D-Jax because of all of the drop balls that came from him, but if I remember correctly, D-Jax had always been Seattle's most reliable receiver before that. Either way, I'll go with Derrick Mason. He's been a proven quality #1 WR for a few years now - I'd be getting a little desperate for WR help if D-Jax were my #1 - although he does have good value in the fifth round or so.
Hines Ward v. Chad Johnson
Hines Ward is one of the more consistant WRs (heh - I used "consistant" and "WR" in the same sentence) available. Chad Johnson did great last year, but with Carson Palmer behind center, I just don't know what to expect from him. Especially after reading KingGhidra's awesome post, eloquently titled, Chad Johnson Stuff
, it made me even more skeptical. C. Johnson is definitely a stud, but I'll hold off on him this year.
Plaxico Burress v. Chris Chambers
Ugh. The Canacuna is not a fan of either. 'Cuna would rather have Chambers if he absolutely had to take one of 'em, though.
Duce Staley v. Eddie George
Well, Duce is already on a team and no one knows where Eddie is headin'. SCORE: Duce 1, Eddie 0. Duce has pretty much no competition. Eddie will likely have competition wherever he winds up - assuming anyone wants him. SCORE: Duce 2, Eddie 0. Duce has potential to put up a thousand + yards. Depending on the situation, Eddie might be fortunate to get 500 yards. SCORE: Duce 3, Eddie 0.
...That's getting boring. Duce Staley, hands down - no debate necessary.
Shaun Alexander v. Deuce McAllister
Alexander done nothing but put up good numbers since replacing Ricky Watters a few years ago. He missed 60 yards only four times last year, but three of those four he managed to score a TD to compensate for the loss of yardage numbers. I averaged last seasons numbers based on the scoring my league used (1 point per 20 yards rushing/receiving) and Shaun Alexander averaged 10.2 points per week and Deuce McAllister averaged 7.2. The last three years, Alexander has scored 44 TDs (14,16,14). Aside from his rookie year as a bench warmer under Ricky Watters (313 yards, 2 TDs), Shaun Alexander is a scoring stud.
I don't watch the Saints much, but when I have, I came away unimpressed with their offense as a whole. I think Shaun will have more opportunities to score some fantasy pointage.
Both will have plenty of yardage, but in fantasy football, TDs are king – and Shaun Alexander is second only to Priest Holmes in TD totals the last couple years, methinks.
Corey Dillon v. Rudi Johnson
I’m not a fan of Rudi Johnson, so this one if fairly simple for me. He just looked … err, I dunno – I just wasn’t impressed when I watched him play – he just seems kind of average to me. Corey Dillon on the other hand, is a great RB and if he could (and he should) get rid of his bad attitude, I can see him putting up some very nice numbers in New England. He could be 2005’s version of Stephen Davis.
Travis Henry v. Stephen Davis
…and speaking of Stephen Davis…
This one pretty much depends who you think will have more of an impact in 2004 – Willis McGahee or DeShaun Foster. I’m more of a believer in the awe-inspiring talents of the awesome DeShaun Foster than I am of the crippled Willis McGahee, so I’m all about Travis Henry on this one.