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Topic: Fantasy Football Advice for Week 1: Don't Sit Your Studs!
 Russ Bliss_108
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Post Date: 09/08/09 12:01

Are you finally ready for some football?


Itís HERE. The regular season gets started this week and itís what all of us fantasy football fanatics have been waiting for. Now that 995 of all drafts are over with, itís time to start deliberating who to start in our lineups. And to help with that, I have some simple fantasy football advice.


Start your studs, regardless of matchup in week 1.


I know itís tempting to look down your roster and see a player who has a juicy matchup, but if he is not the same caliber of player as the guy youíd be sitting in favor of him, donít fall into the trap of sitting superior players to get in a better matchup from one of your bench guys. It happens every year.


Iím not saying this system is foolproof. But more often than not, it prevents you from kicking yourself when you did something you knew†you†should have known better than to do.†Starting your studs†is the smart way to play the first week, and usually the first couple of weeks. Just because Chris Johnson is taking on the Steelers, thereís no way I would recommend sitting him in favor of Julius Jones facing the Rams. Sure, is Johnson going to have a tough time against the Steelers? Probably. And does Jones have a much easier matchup against hapless St. Louis? Definitely. But who is the superior player and better fantasy option almost every week? Itís Johnson. Johnson is a great RB1 for fantasy most weeks. Jones is a decent flex option play some weeks. Johnson would definitely start on my tams and if I had a flex option coming down to Jones vs. the Rams, Jamal Lewis vs. the Vikings, and Torry Holt against Indianapolis, Iíd start Jones as my flex option. But if I start 2 RBís every week and have Chris Johnson and Brandon Jacobs? Jones isnít getting into a starting RB spot over either of these two, especially not the very first week of the season.


Now, this wonít always jibe with what our Lineup Analyzer recommends. And the reason is simple: the Lineup Analyzer runs off a predictive algorithm with no preconceived, personal bias in how to select players whatsoever. To simplify the process greatly, the Lineup Analyzer looks at what each player is projected to do on an average week, looks at the historical performance of each player against the team he is facing, and looks at the projected strength of the opposing defense each player is facing and renders a predicted projection of performance based off these factors. It doesnít recognize that any players are ďstudsĒ and should never sit on your bench.


Whereas I have a very strong philosophy of not sitting my studs regardless of matchups, the Lineup Analyzer takes a different approach and is primarily focused on matchups. It figures out when you should sit a stud to play a lesser player with a better matchup. And while it has an uncanny knack for being right more often than not, it still canít persuade me to give up my traditional, human, biased way of going about things early in the season. What do I use the Lineup Analyzer for early in the season? Breaking ties between players I consider to all about the same in terms of capabilities. Using the above example, Iíll follow it to the letter when considering Julius Jones, Jamal Lewis, or Torry Holt as my flex player.


Another sound piece of fantasy football†advice is†stay away from starting players in uncertain situations, either because of team indecision or injury. I know that many of us drafted Derrick Ward to be a RB2/3 in our fantasy leagues. But the Bucs have stated they are going with a formula of 2 series for one RB, 2 for another, and then 1 for the third RB. And every week, which RB is where in the pecking order between Ward, Ernest Graham, and Cadillac Williams could be different. Why take chances? You should have another, safer option on your roster and should avoid playing any of these 3 guys until either the formula gets scrapped, or we see a rhyme and reason developing from it.


In the case of injury, Pierre Thomas is someone to pay very close attention to this first week. Thomas is questionable to play because of a knee sprain. Itís a juicy matchup to exploit against the Lions week 1, but he may not play, and knowing how coaches work the system, we probably wonít know for sure if Thomas is playing until about an hour before the game starts Sunday. If you have another good option, it would be wise to sit Thomas week 1 as nobody wants to take the zero in the boxscore. If his status changes later in the week, and we hear that Thomas should be fine to start week 1, then you can cautiously plug him into your lineup. But if itís still very uncertain by the time your lineup locks for the first week, I would be forced to sit Thomas and start someone else. It may backfire on me, but playing an injured player is something you gamble on at your own risk and I donít like to take such risks when another option is available to me.†


With all that said, letís sit back and get ready to have some fun as the 2009 fantasy football season is about to begin! Good luck to everyone!
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On any given Sunday any fantasy team can beat another, only to still lose Monday night.
Steve_5619
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Post Date: 09/08/09 20:39
Hi Russ,
I am a big proponent of implementing the human element when making most starting decisions. Sometimes you just have to go with your gut feeling about how a player will or will not perform. For example, I have to decide whether to start Barber or Rice this weekend. I'm actually leaning toward Rice since I think he will run silly through and around the KC defense at home. Tough decision though since I also think the Barbarian is good for at least 1 TD plunge! The Analyzer says Rice. I also just read that the Cowboys are leaning towards a 50/50 split for carries between the Barbarian and Felix...ouch!
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10 Team League. NON PPR, 1pt for 10yds Rush/Rec, 6 pts for Rush/Rec TD. 1 pt for 30yds passing. 4 pts for passing TD.
 Jeff Coruccini_6
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Post Date: 09/08/09 22:23
I think Felix Jones is too good to sit and Barber does better coming off the bench. Could be true.
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Bulla808_103938
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Post Date: 09/09/09 01:52
Who do I start?
Cedric Benson vs.†Denver or Joseph Addai vs. Jacksonville
The are very close in caliber of player.
Joseph Addai seems like a better starter†to me but I have seen Jacksonville in pre season and there defense is sharp.† Please advise
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Team1:
10 Team Yahoo Yardage League (1 point per 10 yards)6 pts TD, 1 pt 25 yds/ passing 4 pts passing TD (Starts 2RB, 2WR, 1 TE, & 1 Flex W/R/T)

QB: C. Kaepernick, E. Manning
RB: T. Richardson, F. Gore, D. Murray, D. Richardson
WR: C. Johnson, R. White, C. Shorts, V. Brown, K. Thompkins
TE: J. Cook
D: Patriots
K: P. Dawson

Team2:
14 Team Yahoo Yardage League (1 point per 10 yards)6 pts TD, 1 pt 25 yds/ passing 4 pts passing TD (Starts 2RB, 2WR, 1 TE, & 1 Flex W/R/T)

QB: Brees
RB: J. Charles, M Jones-Drew, R. Bush, B. Rainey, L. Bell
WR: E. Decker, J. Boykin, K. Stills, N. Burleson
TE: J. Cameron, D. Pitta
D: Panthers
K: S. Hauschka
 Michael_8256
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Post Date: 09/09/09 11:25
Brandon, first off welcome and you'll get more responses on lineup questions when they are placed in the lineup section. †Preseason stats and looks don't mean spit...it's vanilla offense against vanilla defense with a bunch of guys who aren't making the squad.

I think Benson is the right play here to start week one based on matchup.
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"RSIIBITSI"

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.1 pt per 2-yard pass, 6-pts. per TD, -2 per INT
.1 pt per yard rush/rec, 6-pts. per TD, (NO-PPR) (QB/RB/WR)
.1 pts per yard rec. , 1-PPR 6-pts. per TD (TE'S ONLY !!!)
START: 1-QB, 1-RB, 1-WR, 1-TE, 1-FLEX (RB/TE) 1-FLEX (RB/WR) 1-PK, 1-DST
Bryan_102833
Membership: Bench Warmer
Joined: September 09
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Post Date: 09/10/09 03:14
Who to start??† Bernard Berrian or Brandon Marshall?
Also, do you think Fred Jackson or Mike Bell can outperform Ryan Grant this week?
MICHMAN_72714
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Post Date: 09/13/09 08:06
RB issues, Need 3 I'm starting B. Jacobs, M. Turner, R Brown.
Sitting, T jones. Do you† think this is the right choice
 Russ Bliss_108
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Post Date: 09/13/09 08:23
Guys

Post lineup questions in the lineup help forum please.
Start Marshall over Berrian. Berrian won't be 100% and has had no time to get in synch with Favre. Marshall will play a lot today.
Michman you're right on with sitting TJ from that group.
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On any given Sunday any fantasy team can beat another, only to still lose Monday night.
MICHMAN_72714
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Post Date: 09/13/09 08:35
WR Help,
Starting Vincent Jackson, Roddy white,
Sitting : Percy Harvin, Lee Evens
 kbdawg3_103420
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Post Date: 09/13/09 08:51
Who to start? Anquan Bolding or Donnie Avery this week?
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