Week 9 Picks

There’s no excuse for the disappearance of my column the last few weeks, but I’ll do my best to redeem myself.  Even though, I did have a guy’s trip to Vegas during Week 5, where was I Week 6, 7 or 8? Well baby! I’m back!

Week 9.  The start of the second half of the season.  The home stretch, eight games left.  There will now be talk of the Falcons perfect season.  Or MVP candidates, division or Super Bowl favorites.

As I watched Thursday Night Football last night, it made me start thinking about two things.  How’s my fantasy football team doing with Jamaal Charles underperforming? And who is the front-runner for MVP this year?

Well, granted that Romeo Crennel doesn’t use JC25 to his fullest potential, which is disappointing, I already know how my fantasy football team is doing at the RB position.  As for the second question, I have devoted this next segment as the “Leborts Most Valuable Player Rankings!”

Leborts Most Valuable Player Rankings

1.  Aaron Rodgers

You can’t say much more than second in the league in completion percentage, throwing over 2,100 yards and a touchdown to interception ratio 21-4.  This guy is good.  I know the Packers had a sluggish start, but without Rodgers, this team has no chance of making the playoffs.  Take away Rodgers and you take about 10 wins away from this team.  The Packers should be fine if Rodgers continues to light up the scoreboard – not to mention get more than a few MVP votes.

2.  Tom Brady

A perennial MVP candidate, Brady and the Pats started slow, but now seem to be steamrolling.  Even though the New England schedule appears to be one of the easiest in the league, that gives Tom Brady a great opportunity to bulk on the stats.  Not to mention, he’s leading the league in passing yards and has a touchdown to interception ratio of 16-3.

3.  Peyton Manning

This guy just makes teams better.  After 4 neck surgeries and building chemistry with new players, coaches and systems, Manning will only get better.  Currently topping the list of QB’s in Passer Rating at 109.0, Peyton Manning is worth a nod as an MVP candidate.

4.  Arian Foster

9 touchdowns in the first half of the season definitely makes him validate his #1 overall ranking in Fantasy Football.  You could compare him to another top RB like Adrian Peterson or Ray Rice, but they don’t nearly have the number of touchdowns.  As a matter of fact, Foster has scored 1 more touchdown than Peterson and Rice combined.  Since the Texans are in solid position to take over the AFC South, Foster could steal a couple votes for MVP.

Long Shot…

5.  Robert Griffin III

Ok, ok.  I know.  Why do I have to jump on everyone else’s bandwagon?  But here’s the truth.  RGIII is probably one of the most exciting players to watch.  He has already put himself into the “Solid QB’s” group. Throwing for about 1,700 yards and rushing for just under 500 yards is just sick.  With a QB rating just under 100 and completing 66% of his passes, he makes this Redskins team fun to watch.  He could even have more if he wasn’t sidelined for a concussion.  It’s definitely worth mentioning his name in this group of guys, even though it could be a long shot.

Now, in two sentences or less, let’s get to the picks!

(Picks are in bold)

 

DEN -3.5 at CIN

Denver has been playing well.  As each week passes, giving Peyton Manning more time to gel with this new team, it just gives him more confidence and more confidence for me to pick them each week.

ARI +10.5 at GB

Green Bay definitely has the edge here, but I’m not sure if that edge is more than 10 points.  Cardinals defense, could we make this game close?

MIA at IND +2

Andrew Luck is definitely building confidence and managing the game as expected of him.  I think this could be the first time we see Luck playing as if the playoffs are on the line.

BAL -3.5 at CLE

Even though the Browns held the Chargers to 6 points, that’s because San Diego is overly inconsistent.  Baltimore will bounce back and continue that win streak against Cleveland.

BUF at HOU -10

The Texans are the overwhelming favorite here.  I don’t see how I can pick against them.

CAR at WAS -3

Man vs. Beast.  Robert Griffin III is just better.

DET -4 at JAX

After losing MJD, the Jaguars don’t appear to have the talent around to compete.  This is when Stafford gets his groove back.

CHI -3.5 at TEN

The Bears should crush.  Hopefully this one is over early so I can focus on rooting for another game this week.

MIN +4.5 at SEA

Don’t underestimate the Vikings.  Minnesota has faired well as the underdog this season.

TB +1.5 at OAK

If the Raiders win this game, they’ll be 4-4.  That’s not happening.

PITT at NYG -3

The Giants just seem to toy with their opponents.  With a reeling Steelers team, this game should be close, but I have Eli the edge.

DAL at ATL -4

The Cowboys are a mess on offense.  Whenever you have a QB that’s the laughing stock of the league, I’m having trouble picking them…ever.

PHI at NO -3

Andy Reid always seems to cause controversy.  I’m not sure if the best strategy for his team is to question Vick at QB, even though, he leads the league in turnovers.

This week (1-0)

Week 4 (5-11)

This season (22-25-1)