Post Draft Comments

  Posted 8/10 by Staff, Exclusive to Footballguys.com

On August 26th, twelve Footballguys got together for a Survivor Draft. Before the draft started, we asked each of them a series of questions. Hopefully, their answers will help you prepare for your draft.


After the draft, we asked each participant a series of questions.

Cecil Lammey

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    The first pick I didn't consider anyone else except for LaDainian Tomlinson. The WR run started early so my predraft strategy had to change when I selected Andre Johnson. There were some other top flight WRs available, but I felt that Andre presented the most bang for my buck. With the WR run still continuing I knew I had to select another top WR or I would be left with a bunch of backups. Marques Colston was the name that jumped out at me. The Saints offense should be explosive and I expect Colston to show the fire and determination that he did last year. My 4th pick was a guy that I wanted to take earlier, but I waited and still got him. Tom Brady is the type of QB that can finish the season as the top fantasy QB.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    I was expecting to take some big name WRs here, but with the early run on the position the well was dried up. I was going to take Adrian Peterson with my 4th round pick, but he was still there with my 5th round pick, so I was able to draft the 2 players that I wanted at the 2,3 turn at the 4,5 turn. I wanted some more WR power so DJ Hackett was my target. He could end up being the top fantasy WR in Seattle. Brandon Jackson was a rookie RB that I thought has a chance to start, especially now with the injury to Vernand Morency.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    The RB corps has to be among my strength. LT2 is the man, and I have 3 backups that could be the starter for their team. Not only could they be the starter, but they could explode with solid RB2 numbers. Peterson could end up being a top 10 fantasy back if he stays healthy. My WR corps has three solid starters in Colston, AJohnson, and Hackett. Behind them my WRs could put up WR2 numbers any week. Welker will have weeks where he catches a ton of passes. Floyd could explode with monster games. Devin Hester is going to get some big plays sometime during the year. Jarrett and Walker could have some great games as well.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    The TE position. I was waiting for Owen Daniels and Zach Miller because there is no TE premium and I feel both of those players will outperform their ADP.


  5. What were your best picks?
    Almost all of them. LT2 is the best in the league and automatically gives me an advantage over the competition. I loved getting the Hester pick late, and my last pick of Cecil Sapp could pay off if Travis Henry can't stay healthy. The Peterson/Brady picks were an absolute coup. Mike Walker could be starting as early as week one based on what we're hearing out of Jacksonville.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Brandon Jackson, if he doesn't work out, could hurt my team because that was where I could've targeted a top TE. Sure, I could've gotten Welker and Walker much later (9 and 12), but I love Welker and think that he could lead the Patriots in receptions.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    I will need Adrian Peterson to become the player he can be. I will also need some of my lower WR to explode, at least a few weeks.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    Tefertiller had the best draft IMHO. I love his pick of Patrick Crayton. His RBs are solid but not spectacular. His WRs set him apart from almost every other team. Jason Wood has a solid team with overall value at every position. I also feel that my team is among the best in the league. Survivor is all about explosive capabilities, and my team has that at almost every position.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    Andy Hicks has way too many Redskins. Jeff Haseley has an inconsistent team. The Henry pick at 2.04 is an absolute steal. Dave Baker picking 4 average QBs in a row is a nice strategy, but he should've started it a couple of rounds earlier. It's a strategy to survive for a while, but it does not have the explosive capability to win. His RBs will bite his team all year.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    Patrick Crayton in the 18th. Michael Robinson in the 16th. Ron Dayne in the 22nd.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    Wes Welker in the 9th. Malcolm Floyd in the 12th. Troy Williamson anywhere.


Team Specific Questions

  1. What caused you to back off your plan of taking a QB at 3.01?
    The WR run that was caused by Sigmund Bloom. I knew that I could gamble and wait on Brady. Everyone else was trying to get their 2nd or 3rd RB, or trying to keep up with the WR run. I had to get WRs, and make sure that I wasn't left holding the bag. I was still able to get Brady - just 2 rounds after where I had him targeted.


  2. You drafted Wes Welker nearly 5 rounds ahead of his ADP. What are your expectations for him this season?
    The Patriots gave up a 2nd round pick for Welker. He is the new Troy Brown. He will make a solid, dependable receiver for Tom Brady. Moss is spectacular, but his scoring will come in bunches. Donte Stallworth has an injury history that reads like War & Peace. Welker will lead the team in receptions, and will be the consistent playmaker that you need in a survivor format.


  3. Your team is loaded with young talent, but many are not currently starting for their respective teams. Can this team survive early elimination before some of these players emerge?
    Anything is possible with LaDainian Tomlinson. Mike Walker is already being reported as having a chance to start WEEK ONE. Wes Welker doesn't need to start to put up good points from the slot position. With the injury of Eric Parker, Malcom Floyd is now being considered to be the starter opposite of Vincent Jackson. If Floyd is healthy, he will out-produce Jackson. Brandon Jackson is the starter by default in Green Bay. The key to survivor drafts is forward thinking. Know football, and know the topsy turvy nature of the game. Ride the wave, and predict how players may perform. Watching football and scouting these players is just the beginning. It's about knowing the tendencies of the front office, the stories behind the scenes, that will help you get steals in your survivor draft. I fully expect to win this league.



Andy Hicks

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    The 1st rounder was clear cut going to be Steven Jackson. 1% of me said maybe Frank Gore was worth a gamble, but I'm not messing around with the 1st pick.

    The 2nd rounder was a bigger problem. I did not expect Clinton Portis to be available, but the number of WRs taken to this point had me worried. By the time I took Anquan Boldin at 2.11, he was the 10th WR off the board, leaving many good RBs available. Cecil taking Andre Johnson and Marques Colston at the turn solidified my decision to take Quan ahead of Portis. Who'd have thought just as many WRs were off the board as RBs after 25 picks? It would have been tempting to take Portis and Willis McGahee, but the WRs options available to me at R4 & R5 would have been a concern. Anquan is gold in this format.

    For the 4th pick I was secretly hoping Randy Moss would be there. R3 was far too early to take him however and I knew there were a few big fans of Moss drafting, so I was resigned to losing out there. Laveranues Coles was the next hope and it was extremely disappointing to see Mike take him 1 pick before me. I would have taken Marshawn Lynch in R5 if Coles was there at 4.11. As it was Lynch was a player I didn't think would be there so I had to snap him up once Coles was gone. I'm very happy to have him here.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    After 4 rounds I had 3 RBs and 1 WR and knew I need to get some WRs. The problem was I still wanted to get my Tight Ends in 6 & 7 and Ladell Betts would be needed as well. A WR was more important than getting Betts at R5, so grabbed the best one available in my book, Santana Moss. At this stage Portis was my only other week 4 bye and I thought Betts would be gone and plenty of Tight Ends would be there at pick 6. The run of Gonzalez, Heap, Shockey and Winslow just before my 6th rounder was a kick in the teeth I didn't need. With Betts still available it was a tough call. I liked 3 Tight Ends here in Cooley, Davis and Crumpler, but Cooley was far ahead of the other 2 with the Michael Vick news getting worse and worse and Vernon Davis still has to prove a lot. I thought Davis and Crumpler weren't worth sacrificing Ladell Betts for. By taking Betts at 6 and Cooley at 7 I was placing myself in a week 4 black hole. This meant that later in the draft I couldn't take any Jacksonville, Washington, New Orleans or Tennessee players. As a fan of Jason Campbell, Byron Leftwich and others from these teams, it was tough to lose 4 teams from my list of options.

    Round 8 was easy, take the best available QB. My choices were Favre, Rivers and Roethlisberger. Rivers and Favre had the same bye week, which essentially meant Roethlisberger in R8 and 1 of the other 2 in Round 9.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    RB and TE are the easily the strength here. I have 4 of my top 24 backs in Jackson, Portis, Lynch and Betts, including an uber stud in Jackson. At tight end I have 3 of the top 13 at the position.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    I am concerned about WR & QB. This competition favors WR depth and I'm probably lacking here. Boldin is gold, Moss will take a spot, but after that I could be in trouble. I'm hoping Furrey isn't a one season wonder, although realistically that is a possibility. Hoping one of Stovall/Clayton does something and Bryant Johnson is there in case of Boldin/Fitzgerald problems. I also need Dwayne Bowe to sign and learn quickly.

    At QB, the play was to get 3 mid range QBs. I do have 2 of my top 12, but needed a 3rd to complement them. I gambled at pick 11 when taking Dwayne Bowe than one of Schaub, Pennington, Campbell or Garcia would make it back. They didn't. Bowe probably would have made it back so that was easily my biggest mistake. Mike again drove a dagger in my heart by taking Schaub 1 pick before I would have. I like Roethlisberger and Rivers, but needed a 3rd starting QB for point maximization. Batch is purely there in case Roethlisberger is injured again. I was reduced to gambling on Culpepper.


  5. What were your best picks?
    I'm very happy to get Marshawn Lynch at 4.11. I Think in a points per reception league he'll be very dangerous. I like the Chris Cooley pick as well, just disappointed he has a week 4 bye. Bryant Johnson appeared to be a nice R22 selection.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    The only one that I want to kick myself for is as explained previously, Dwayne Bowe in round 11. The rest I can justify although round 4 is going to be a major problem for me. On paper maybe Ladell Betts at 6.11 was a mistake, but I can live with it. I wasn't happy with the WRs available at 6.11 and would have gone for Cooley and probably Crumpler anyway. Thought it was too early for Kitna and Greg Jennings.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Surviving Week 4. If I manage that I'm in with a chance.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    If I speak honestly I don't think I have one of the 3 best teams and expect to be in a lot of the other drafters worst team lists. I personally prefer to draft in the middle (picks 4-9). Waiting 21 picks between selections limits your options. Anyway, onto my 3 favorite sides in order, the three David's:


    • I like what David Yudkin has done. 9 WRs, but the receivers collected are mainly hot and cold players. He only needs 3 or 4 of them to strike every week and he's in the playoffs. He's strong at all the major positions.


    • David Dodds' team has the mix of QBs I would love to have had and I like the way he approached the WR positions. 9 picks may be excessive on this area, but I have a feeling it will turn into gold. Week 5 is his risk week with 5 WRs on a bye.


    • Dave Baker has done really well. 4 starting QBs, even though I have all of them ranked in the 20s, the approach is sound. I like the depth he has across the board although I think he may struggle in weeks 5 and 6 with 6 players off in each week.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    It's pick on Jeff day I'm afraid.


    • Jeff Haseley has Peyton, why go after 3 very risky other QBs? At RB Benson, Foster and Henry are all players I'm extremely wary of. At WR there are 3 players that I would never have drafted. He has enough key players to escape with some luck and his bye week management was superb, but I think depth will be a big killer here.


    • Jeff Tefertiller has 2 QBs that could struggle to dominate. I like Campbell, but he would have been my No.3. A lot is riding on Romo. Stanton shouldn't even play. I only like Reggie and Thomas Jones of the RBs. The depth here is a concern. The WRs have 4 guys well into their 30s and 2 rookies. I think they'll do enough to not be a weakness however. Only two tight ends, defenses and kickers will be a problem. Needs his first 2 Reggie picks to fire big time.


    • Jeff Pasquino - Grossman, Leinart and Anderson are all QBs I have major doubts about. I don't think there is enough strength in his RBs. Again two tight ends, defenses and kickers will be a problem, especially with 1 from each position on a bye in week 6. I like his starting trio of receivers however and the matching set of Chris Henrys was a nice touch, even if they'll be as useful as a window in a coffin. This Jeff has a balanced side that will need some luck to progress.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    I may be biased, but Clinton Portis at 3.02. Last year he was the 4th RB drafted. He's still young, a TD machine and an excellent receiver.

    Jamal Lewis as the 34th RB off the board was insane. Starting RBs in Round 8 don't grow on trees.

    Laveranues Coles in this format at 4.10 was something that caught my eye. A lock for 80+ receptions, 1000+ yards and 5-6 TDs. Not many locks at any position.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    T.J. Houshmandzadeh as the 6th WR drafted was a case of "get this player at any cost". I'd imagine he would have been there in Round 3, but Housh is getting enough hype to propel him up draft boards.

    Vince Young at 7.03 is not a player I'm sold on. 2nd year QBs always scare me, especially when he hasn't convinced a lot of people with his passing game.

    Cedric Benson at 3.09 is going to be a draft killer for a lot of people this year. He couldn't catch a cold and his attitude and injury history are major red flags.


Team Specific Questions

  1. Why did you take only two defenses when your plan was to go with quantity over quality?
    Due to taking an extra QB & TE than I had planned, I had to sacrifice somewhere. Either the kicker or defense position needed to lose a spot to accommodate. I was much happier with Jacksonville and Atlanta as a combination than the 2 kickers I had at that stage, so had to reduce my defense allocation from 3 to 2.


  2. What prompted you to not take TEs in the sixth and seventh rounds (as you had planned)?
    The drafting of Clinton Portis threw this plan out the window. I felt I needed to take Ladell Betts to solidify the Washington run game. I never expected Portis to be available when he was and even bypassed him at 2:11 knowing that it would cause a dilemma. When Cecil passed on Portis, he was by far the value pick for me at 3:02, so I had to take him. If Marshawn Lynch was not available at 4.11 I would have taken Betts at 4.11 and kept my TE strategy intact. Shockey, Heap and Gonzalez (and Winslow) were taken in the 5 picks before me. If Shockey and/or Heap were available I would have been sorely tempted to take either of them at 6.11 and Cooley/Heap/Shockey on the way back at 7.02, but my RB game would have been weaker and would require more picks down the line than I wanted to spend at RB.


  3. You backed up your two starting RBs (Jackson and Portis) and only drafted 5 RBs total. Does this concern you in weeks 4 and 9 (the weeks Washington and St. Louis are on byes)?
    Marshawn Lynch is the key to keeping this flowing. I fully expect by week 4 that he is the dominant point scorer at RB in Buffalo. In week 4 I'll be relying on Lynch and Jackson to get the RB points and hope someone else steps up to the flex spot. Week 4 is a major problem for me and I'll need big games from Lynch and Jackson in this week to get through. Week 9 I'm not so concerned about. 2 of Betts, Lynch and Portis should do the trick. The only other player on my roster with a week 9 bye is my 3rd Tight End, so if I make that far I won't be any more concerned than I would be normally with my 1st rounder on a bye.



Mike Anderson

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    The first round pick was a toss up of LJ, Westbrook, and Gore. They were about even in this scoring system, and each has baggage. LJ seemed the safest as he is just holding out, and not the injury risk. Any or all of them could be out for major sections of the season. There are 2 clear cut RBs in a PPR league, the 3rd pick is interchangeable with the 5th. The plan was WR heavy, and Roy Williams was a blessing in the second. SHOCKED is the thought in my mind when Rudi Johnson was there in the 3rd. I know it's PPR, but come on! Coles in the 4th was the best WR on the board.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    Yes, because of the run on the WRs that I expected to be drafting, I was able to get a clear cut starting RB in the 5th round. I didn't expect to end up with 2 clear starting RBs, much less 3 of them. If we could have traded, I would have moved down in the 6th. Winslow was just too much value there after the WR run. The same with Vince Young. With everyone going WR, I jumped ship and went after other positions. I had to pick up the best WRs available in rounds 8-11, but it should pay off.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    My biggest strength might be balance. I didn't have to short the squad in any area, and we match up with the others well. I think 3 clear cut starting RBs, with 3 great situational RBs that could take off in this format is going to be tough for other teams to match.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    I could be happier with my WRs. In a PPR league where it's possible to start 4 WRs a week, they are arguably the most valuable position in this league. I knew that going in, hence the plan to load up on WRs. The draft opened up with seemingly everyone understanding that strategy, and it allowed me to draft more traditionally to gain advantages in QB, RB, and TE. I don't know if it will pay off, but that is why they play the games on Sunday.


  5. What were your best picks?
    Please, Rudi Johnson in the 3rd round! I know it's a PPR league, but a 1st round player in the 3rd? Best pick of the entire draft. I love the longshot flyer on Mike Williams. I wish I had taken Koren Robinson with my last pick.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    I had no choice but to reach for all my late WRs. The pool was drying up too quickly. I jumped away from my draft plan, and it may come back to haunt the squad. WRs should be very valuable in this league.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    I may struggle in week 4 going with Matt Schaub who I don't expect to be a fantasy force. Larry Johnson needs to get into camp. If he holds out, I may not make it past week 1.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    • Dodds - Got the QB everyone should have been coveting, along with Favre He took the exact QB set up I was targeting going in. Good solid pass catching RBs. I really don't like many of his WRs, but he has 9 of them in a PPR league where it's possible to start 4 WRs.


    • Levin - Solid QB play, the "better" half of all his RB combos, and fantastic potential at WR on a weekly basis.


    • Lammey - Almost unfair to start with LT. Solid QB play, Might be a little weaker at RB, but LT can produce the same as 2 RBs on any given week. Great potential at WR. If Hackett takes over in Seattle, this is a strong team. Andre Johnson is a monster in a PPR league. Cecil really screwed up at TE, but I don't think it will haunt him that much.




  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    • Yudkin - This is the wrong league to have to start the likes of Henderson, Matt Jones, or Curtis week in and week out. Shaun Alexander is a poor 1st round pick in a PPR league, coupled with the fact that he is coming off injury and 30 years old. Way too much was "spent" on QBs in the early rounds when gems were available much later.


    • Haseley - Did we somehow miss the part where you have great odds to start 4 WRs a week? Manning in the first round? Four deep at RB where you can't trade, and can't ever start more than 3, most likely only 2 on a given week. When there is an honest shot that Ted Ginn is in your regular starting lineup in a 12 team league, you are in trouble. Love rookie owners. Now watch him win it as I am out in week 1. :Karma:


    • Bloom - Sigmund could be the genius of this draft. I don't see it, but follow his picks. He is ridiculously weak at RB, and WR depth is almost nonexistent. However, if WRs do carry this league as much as everyone seemed to think, Bloom could go deep. I'll tip my hat if that's the case, but I suspect he is done in the first couple of weeks.




  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    Rudi in the 3rd, and I thank the league for allowing me to steal him there, really, you are too kind... I like Kitna in the 7th. That shouldn't have happened with this group, before I switched to Young, I was expecting to take Kitna in the 6th myself. The biggest steal of the draft was Drew Brees in the 6th. That's who I was waiting on when I was forced to take the ill-fated Winslow pick. HUGE value for Bloom in the 6th round. HUGE. With the WR runs all the value was in QBs and RBs.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    Peyton Manning in the 1st round. In fact, it was such a big reach, that it will count for the first 3 biggest reaches. The next biggest reach could be any countless number of WRs that flew off the board. Most of the owners took the time to see how the leagues scoring would play out, and they drafted accordingly. WRs flew off the board. I can't really point to a particular WR as so many of them were reaches. All the value was at QB and RB.


Team Specific Questions

  1. What prompted you to pull the trigger on Winslow at 6.10 when your plan was to wait on a TE?
    At the time the WR pool was drained and it was a reach for almost any of them. I would have been happy with either Vince Young or Hasselbeck at QB, and was sure one would slide to my next pick. I had also just taken a 3rd starting RB in the round before. I was watching for Brees to slide, and as soon as he went off the board, I wish I could have traded down. TEs started flying off the board in front of me where I had Gonzo, Heap, Shockey and Winslow on a tier together. Winslow was all that was left before the next big drop off. So, WRs were poor, didn't need a RB, and I was happy with the QB that would fall in the next round.


  2. Why did you draft a third kicker (with two good ones already on your team)?
    Last second guessing. I was slated to take Koren Robinson as a flier with that pick. I feel that he will be paying off by half way through the season. Don't forget about him in your drafts. However, in this league, it is a "best ball" sort of play where the best player on a given week is your starter. I decided to take a shot at another kicker who might blow up on a weekly basis. As this league rewards longer kicks in smaller increments, Janikowski was the clear cut long shot to have a few huge games.


  3. You drafted Brandon Jones a few rounds ahead of his ADP. What are your expectations for him this season?
    To be fair, look at the WRs coming off the board at the time. Wes Welker was the next WR off the board. That said, Jones is likely the #1 WR in Tennessee. I expect him to basically double his stats from last season - 60 receptions (the reason he was drafted high in this format), 750 yards, and 5-7 TDs.



Jeff Pasquino

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    Pick #1 (1.04) was easy - Brian Westbrook is a lock to be in the Top 5, and I want solid performance in a PPR league without much downside. Only his injury history is a risk, and given that I'll take my chances. His points per game will be rock solid and his numbers are very good when he starts. With such a deep draft (24 rounds) I'll have plenty of backup for him later in the draft. Picks 2 and 3 (2.09, 3.04) were earmarked for two Top 10 WRs, and that's what I got in Fitzgerald and Driver. The 4.09 pick was trick in that 22 RBs were gone already and I expected at least 2 more to be gone by my next pick. I had to scarf up Deuce McAllister here.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    I was dead on in my predictions, which is exactly what should happen if you let the draft come to you. Take the best four players and figure which ones should be there, then let the rest of the draft fall in place. Round 5 was all about getting a nice WR3 (more on Cotchery later), as I knew I needed to lock up that starter position now (and a good bye week) since Round 6 was for a TE, just like I said before the draft. Shockey was a perfect fit, and I took the best players on the board in Julius Jones and Muhsin Muhammad. I really don't like Jones, but you have to like the value at that point of the draft.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    WRs will lead this team, as they should in a WCOFF format (Start 3, PPR, one flex). TE is also solid, as are my Top 2-3 RBs.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    While I'd like to think I don't have any, I'm sure some would say that QB is my weakness. I had planned to take three QBs but people got nutty about them and scarfed up all the starters as fast as they could. I will have to rely on Rex Grossman and Matt Leinart to lead the way, with slight chances of Derek Anderson contributions. Frankly if Anderson contributes I bet I am in a lot of pain. Other weaknesses were K and D, but given the scoring system I don't worry much about either.


  5. What were your best picks?
    Deuce McAllister in Round 4 continues to amaze me. I think I hit a nice roll in the middle rounds in taking Demetrius Williams (14.09), Anthony Thomas (15.04) and Adrian Peterson (16.09) after the midpoint of the draft.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Hindsight is 20/20, but Driver might blow up on me if he is hurt. I might have preferred to have Favre over Leinart as well, as he should be more durable and post bigger TD numbers. I wanted to snag Warrick Dunn who kept falling but I played it somewhat safe in taking Leon Washington instead way down in Round 11.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Consistent production from the first four picks and for Rex Grossman and Matt Leinart to put up some touchdowns. I don't see many bye week issues so I'm good there. As long as my WRs and TEs put up scores and receptions I think I should stick around a long time in this contest.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    Jeff Tefertiller's team looks pretty good. I always start by looking at the best teams at WR. Bloom had a great start but I think that his letting RB slide so much will catch up with him. Levin has a solid group, but Week 8 may hurt. I will go with myself, Jeff T. and Levin's teams for the best 3 on paper.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    I have to start with my good buddy Cecil Lammey here, and it is because he messed up after getting the gift of Tomlinson. I'm not a fan of what he did at all at WR, seeming to reach more than once for receivers. After three solid starters he seemed to have much less depth. Jason Wood's list of wideouts also looks pretty skinny, and he doesn't have a rock solid TE option either. Yudkin's team is also slim at WR but he does have Gates. I'll have to add Jeff Haseley's team to Lammey's and Woodrow's squads. Haseley's team feels like a big roll of the dice for his third WR most weeks, and in the bye weeks that could be even more costly.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    I have to vote for one of my own in Chris Henry - the second one I took - the WR for the Bengals. I took him as the 80th WR off the board late in the draft, and many thought I was crazy. Well, I could be, but crazy like a fox. Sure he won't do anything until Week 10, but considering I am playing for first place I wanted a player who had 9 TDs last year and challenged Chad Johnson for #1 WR status. Who else was available after 243 players were gone that could actually outperform and produce high enough to log a good score? Not many players at all, especially at a crucial spot like wideout.

    Other players I pick for the steal of the draft are Drew Bennett (Yudkin) and Amani Toomer (Jeff Tefertiller). Both could post respectable numbers and scores, which is outstanding value in Round 14.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    I think Wes Welker went far too early. I don't think Musa Smith has any value left, so I didn't like that pick either. The worst pick is going to be a runoff between Michael Vick and Priest Holmes. I just don't buy it that Holmes is really coming back, and in Round 17 that felt too early to gamble. Vick was also a gamble, and the odds grow worse every day for him to play this year. Sure they were late round stabs at former fantasy studs, but the outlook for both is grim this year.


Team Specific Questions

  1. How much of a risk is taking a player like Chris Henry that will miss the first nine weeks of the season?
    Not much at all. Given that I already had seven WRs and no more than two shared a bye, I will have 5 or more WRs (if healthy) producing for me for the first 10 weeks. After that point Henry represents a huge value in the second half of the season. This pick looks and feels risky, but given that he is WR8 on my team and all I can hope for is a big game to crack my top 3 or 4 to score for the week, I had to go for the big upside player.


  2. You waited until the 18th round to select your first defense (and then selected two back to back). Any regrets waiting that late?
    Not really. The WCOFF scoring is very anti-defense. The Ravens and the Bears did well of course last year, but they both scored fewer than 200 points total. The average defenses from #5 down to #23 scored between 139 and 107 points, or just a two per game difference. Taking two teams projecting to be Top 20 and using them as a committee seemed fine by me.


  3. You took Jerricho Cotchery a few rounds before his ADP. What are your expectations for him this season?
    This is where you can really separate from the rest of the pack in ignoring ADP. Yes his ADP is technically in the 7th round, but given that my next pick after 5.04 was 6.09 and that I planned on it being a TE, I wanted the best WR available. I looked at Joey Galloway and Mark Clayton, but I wanted the bigger PPR producer. I can see Cotchery with 80+ catches this year, whereas I see both Clayton and Galloway struggling for that number. I had Cotchery in the Top 25 of WRs (with the others just outside of it) and I liked his Week 10 bye, so that was the easy choice.



David Baker

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    Frank Gore was an easy decision for me. After a spectacular 2006, I had him slotted as my fourth pick and to get him at number five pleased me. In the second round, I was torn between Clinton Portis and Marvin Harrison. I really wanted Terrell Owens, but when he did not last, I decided I could wait and get a good RB in round three and went with Harrison. All the guy did was finish as the best fantasy WR last year. Getting him after six other WRs had been selected was a coup. While I hoped for Portis to still be there in round three, I was nearly as happy to see Ronnie Brown there. The top notch RBs were going to dry up before it came back in round four, so I knew I was going RB there. And Brown could have a very nice season. In the fourth round, I had decided I was waiting on QB and there were no RBs there I liked much, so I went with WR. I had it between Braylon Edwards, Laveranues Coles and Chris Chambers. I went with Edwards for his possible upside and ended up getting Chambers on the way back anyway.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    It was likely I was going to wait on QB, although I was considering Donovan McNabb in round six. My basic strategy then became getting the best player available. I got Chris Chambers in 5 and then Lamont Jordan as my RB3 in round six. After some top TEs went off the board after Jordan, I grabbed Jason Witten in 7 to assure I would get a top nine TE. I see a big drop-off after that. I then took a shot at Jerry Porter in the 8th.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    I really like both my RBs and WRs. Frank Gore and Ronnie Brown give me two guys that can toss up some numbers. Lamont Jordan gives me a fairly reliable backup with legitimate upside and I got Kevin Jones who has big risk but also big reward. At receiver, with Marvin Harrison, Braylon Edwards and Chris Chambers, I have three solid starters. I also added Jerry Porter, another guy with upside.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    My big weakness is at QB. I waited too long and the late rounder I had my eye on, Eli Manning, was gone before I could get one. I decided then to load up as much as possible there grabbed four QBs in rounds 10-13.


  5. What were your best picks?
    They're all the best. Seriously, I loved getting Ronnie Brown. I think the Miami offense will be better than most think and he'll get a bulk of that production. I also liked my Jason Witten pick as there is a drop off for TEs right after that and Witten could just as easily be a top 5 guy this year. Kevin Jones could also be a big time steal.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    I should have grabbed Eli Manning earlier, as he is who I wanted. It's possible Kevin Jones slides and I could have had both. I also selected Kenny Irons when I should have taken Michael Clayton. I was surprised to see Clayton taken that early and I think Irons could have been had the following round.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    I need contributions from my QB core. If at least one them steps up every week, I'll be heading to the playoffs. I also need Miami to have a solid offense. With Trent Green, Ronnie Brown and Chris Chambers on my roster, I am putting a lot into a basket that did not show much last year. I also need Marvin Harrison to have one more solid season.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    I think my team is right there. I have RBs to match about anyone and other than Bloom the same can be said for my WRs. My weakness at QB is softened by having four starters. I also like Cecil's team. He's strong everywhere but tight end. His depth might be an issue at WR. I also like Yudkin's team. Great QBs, great RBs. He's weak at WR but with 9 guys all he needs is a few to step up each week. And he has Antonio Gates.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    Tough question, as I don't think anyone did a bad job. But all PC comments aside, Jeff Haseley might be too reliant on Peyton Manning and is very weak at WR. Jeff Pasquino might have a tough time. He's not especially strong at any position. I also think the esteemed David Dodds could be in some trouble as I dislike his WR core and he's not overpowering at QB or RB.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    I'm convinced Randy Moss has a big year and getting with the last pick in round three was a big-time steal. I'm also loving the Matt Jones pick in round 12. Despite the talk out of Jacksonville, I like Jones for 2007. And Eli Manning in the 10th round should work really well.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    Maurice Jones-Drew with the 12th overall pick might have been the biggest reach. I think Jerious Norwood in the 4th was a reach, with guys like Thomas Jones, Adrian Peterson, Marshawn Lynch and Ahman Green sill on the board. I also think Peyton Manning was drafted too highly with the ninth overall.


Team Specific Questions

  1. Are you concerned that your first two selections (Frank Gore and Marvin Harrison) and your first QB selected (J.P. Losman) are off the same bye week?
    I don't see any bye issues for me at all. I'm not exactly reliant on Losman as he was a 10th round pick for me. Losing my first RB and WR selected in the same week isn't wonderful, but I have the depth needed as each spot to recover nicely, I think. I could start Ronnie Brown and Lamont Jordan (or Kevin Jones if he is back), and at WR I'd go with Chambers, Braylon Edwards and Jerry Porter.


  2. You selected 4 starting QBs in rounds 10-13. Explain your thought process here.
    Well, I was waiting on QB and hoped to snag Eli Manning. When I missed out on Manning, I knew I wanted Jake Delhomme and JP Losman. A QB run started around the end of the eighth round, with 8 QBs drafted in 17 picks, including Manning and Delhomme. I scrambled to get Losman and when another guy I wanted, Byron Leftwich, was picked shortly thereafter, I changed my strategy and decided to get the next three best QBs I could find. Shotgun theory, if you will, which can work fairly well in the Survivor format.


  3. Tell us about your RB handcuff of Lamont Jordan and Dominic Rhodes. What are your expectations there?
    Well, I got Rhodes in the 17th round, so I wouldn't exactly call it a handcuff or a risk pick. Even if I didn't own Jordan, Rhodes could do something. But if Jordan goes down, Rhodes would step in for him. Call it a cheap insurance policy. I actually don't expect much from Rhodes this year though. The less he does, the more likely the Jordan pick was a good one.



David Dodds

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    In the first round I was torn between Reggie Bush and Joseph Addai. I opted for Addai because I wanted to avoid week 4 byes from my top picks. This is a single elimination week so these byes really can sting. Other byes are spread over two week eliminations.

    Once I selected Addai, it was inevitable that Marvin Harrison with the same bye would fall to me. I actually rate T.J. and Harrison in the same tier (I like T.J. a little better actually, but know I am in the minority here). I was pretty sure that the early drafters would want to grab at least one WR each so I reasoned that it actually made the most sense to grab the WR here (and slightly overpay) and then get value at RB in the third round. I selected T.J. to avoid bye week a disaster out of the gate.

    I think Edge is in for a nice season and love the pick in the third round. I considered Cedric Benson and Willis McGahee, but liked Edge better.

    In the 4th I was hoping Burress would slide to me, but was pleased to grab steady Hines Ward there. Value was definitely not at RB in this round and I felt that Ward was a lot better than other options at WR.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    I already had two players on a week 6 bye so that was something I was watching the rest of the draft. I was looking to add RBs and WRs and grab my first QB in the 7th or 8th. I would also consider a quality TE if they slipped below ADP.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?


    • QBs are not in danger of getting benched. Each was selected after their ADP so they represent good value.


    • RBs should hold their own if Brown has a prominent role with the Titans


    • Three solid WRs


    • Best combo of defenses


    • Quality TE later than ADP in Heap


    • Three Minnesota WRs. This should give me floating points if two end up starting


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?


    • I am an injury away from my RBs being in really bad shape (no depth). Team could use another RB.


    • Too many players off on weeks 5 and 6


    • 2nd TE could be a non-factor


  5. What were your best picks?


    • Brandon Jacobs at 5.06 was larceny.


    • Chris Brown at 10.07 could be the same if Fatdale continues to eat himself out of the competition.


    • The three Minnesota WRs. This would not work in normal leagues, but could be a huge play in this format. If they can combine for 12 TDs, I think they can be the difference for me as their points only count when they have a good game.


  6. What were your worst picks?


    • Pretty stupid grabbing a third defense after getting both Chicago and San Diego. I should have drafted another RB or TE.


    • T.J. was a slight reach, but as I explained before I felt like I would do better reaching for him at 2 than selecting a RB and getting scraps at WR in round 3.


    • I am high on Holmes' prospects, but taking another week 6 bye player here created all kinds of issues later.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?


    • I need to survive past weeks 5 and 6.


    • I need my Minnesota WRs to score 12-13 TDs at a minimum


    • I need my top selections to stay injury-free


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    I like my team, Baker's and Haseley's squads the best. All have many value players that could yield great results. They also are balanced with players that will be on the field every week (minimal backups/rookies/etc).


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    I think Lammey, Yudkin and Wood will struggle in this. Lammey reached for a lot of players and is loaded full of rookies that might be great at the end of the year, but kill you early. I think Yudkin's decision to draft two QBs in rounds 5 and 6 put him in a huge hole at WR. Wood has a big issue with weeks 5 and 6 (just like my team). I don't see his team making it past that spot. I also dislike a lot of his players.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?


    • Rudi Johnson (Anderson) at 3.03


    • Brandon Jacobs (Dodds) at 5.06


    • Tatum Bell (Yudkin) at 8.02


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    • Wes Welker (Lammey) at 9.01


    • Andre Johnson (Lammey) at 2.12


    • Malcolm Floyd (Lammey) at 12.12




Team Specific Questions

  1. You drafted three Minnesota WRs. What's the strategy there?
    In a Survivor league I just need one of these players to hit on a given week. I agree with everyone that this passing offense will be BAD. And because no one is exactly sure whether Wade, Williamson or Rice will be the go-to guy, all went WAY BELOW market value. By having all of them in this format, I should have level scoring that could help keep this team consistent. All I ask is that they combine for 12 TDs.


  2. Why take three defenses when your first two are so highly rated? Also, why duplicate a bye week with your third defense?
    Probably a mistake, but I love having three defenses generally in this format. Defensive scoring varies wildly between weeks so having a third one helps keep this a very strong option each week. At the end of the draft I did not like many other options, but the pick might have been better used at the RB or TE position.


  3. Why did you take Houshmandzadeh a round earlier than you planned?
    Because I expected drafters (1-5) to take at least one WR and possibly two with their next picks. I knew I wanted to go WR here because I was almost assured of getting RB value in the third if I continued to press the WR run. I considered Marvin Harrison in the second round, but actually like T.J. better (different bye week and I rate him better this year). So by reaching a bit in the second, I got great value at RB in the third. Slightly risky move, but I think it worked out OK (and I ended up with two players I love this year in T.J. and Edge)



Jeff Tefertiller

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    I went into the drafting wanting Willie Parker. I had no idea Reggie Bush would fall so far in a PPR league that rewards big games. I knew I wanted to go RB/WR/WR/RB in the first four rounds. Reggie Wayne and Terrell Owens were the two receivers I wanted at 2.06. Wayne dropped to me. In the third round, I had Lee Evans as the last receiver in the tier and chose him over Javon Walker. Evans had a good PPR year last year. In the fourth round, I was looking for the best ball carrier available and chose Thomas Jones. He should be steady this year and make a good complement to Bush.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    Even though I knew what I was getting into, drafting both Wayne and Evans made me take WR3 and WR4 earlier since they share the same bye week. This is why I chose steady veteran receivers (Galloway and Glenn) in the fifth and seventh rounds. I had planned on waiting a little later on taking a tight end, but I am high on Gonzalez this year and he was great value in the middle of the sixth round. In the eighth round, I sensed a QB run of the next tier before I picked in the ninth round. In fact, four more QBs were taken before I picked again. Romo was the tenth QB taken and the middle of the eighth round represented value for me. At this point in the draft, I was very happy with a core of Romo, RBush, TJones, Wayne, Evans, Galloway, Glenn, and Gonzalez.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    I chose to build depth at running back and receiver drafting six backs and nine receivers. Plus, I tried to get studs at as many positions as possible and was happy with a top RB (Bush), two top WRs (Wayne, Evans), a top TE (Gonzalez), and the top kicker (Vinatieri).


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    Running back depth. With Chester Taylor as my RB3, and a bunch of NFL backups, make up my RB3 spot and bye week filler. It could work out great or they could disappoint. I hope not to rely on Ron Dayne each week.


  5. What were your best picks?
    Tony Romo in the eighth round, Patrick Crayton in the eighteenth round to pair with Glenn, and Ron Dayne in the twenty-second round. I see Dayne having a couple of big games this year.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Drew Stanton in the nineteenth round was basically a swing for the fence. Robert Meachem in the twenty-second round was probably not needed considering I liked my receivers. I probably should have taken a third defense at that pick.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Will need two of the bench running backs to step up and get game time for their NFL teams. Plus, with Campbell as my backup passer, I will need Romo to play well most of the year.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    I drafted for depth at RB and WR because it is an endurance race with no waiver wire pickups. I drafted studs at as many positions as I could. Other teams I like are Pasquino's and Anderson's. Both are very deep at both positions with each having a few starting NFL RBs and good WR depth.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    I see Dave Baker's team coming up short on RB and WR depth as the season rolls along. His RBs of Gore, Brown, Kevin Jones, and Lamont Jordan all seem to have injury risk and Irons is the only bench RB with upside. His WRs sport Marvin Harrison, Braylon Edwards, Chris Chambers, and Jerry Porter with little else. Depth should come into play sooner than later. Also, having four average QBs does not make up for not getting a good one. I think Jeff Haseley will suffer from the same lack of depth. Travis Henry and Cedric Benson are good enough RBs, and Norwood is a good RB3. But The depth should come into play, especially if any injuries to the top two. Hopefully, having Peyton Manning might cover some of these issues. Since the Survivor format is driven by WRs, this team might be hurting in that area with Reggie Brown, Bernard Berrian, and Calvin Johnson as the top wideouts. I understand the #12 draft spot is very tough, but I think Marc Levin's team might have issues. His best RBs are Warrick Dunn, DeAngelo Williams, Jamal Lewis, and Maurice Jones-Drew. This would be fine if he loaded up on WRs more, but the 12-hole makes that difficult. He will have to rely on Branch, Mark Clayton, Randy Moss, and Torry Holt. Holt is a very good WR1. But, Marc only drafted seven WRs total and might have issues, especially since Branch and Clayton share bye week eight.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    Shaun Alexander at pick 1.11 offers tremendous value if he is healthy. Alexander is still capable of a top 5 season. Clinton Portis and Rudi Johnson at 3.02 and 3.03 respectively are great picks. They offered a team to have two stud RBs with a top WR in the 2nd round.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    T.J. Houshmandzadeh at pick 2.09 (19 overall) was a reach. I understand the reasoning that he might not be there for the 3rd round pick, but it was way ahead of the ADP. Peyton Manning at 1.09 in a 12 team Survivor is a bit too early. He should have been available for the 2.04 pick. DeAngelo Williams, who is not a NFL starter, was picked at 3.12 ahead of safer and more productive backs like Caddy Williams, Thomas Jones and Deuce McAllister.


Team Specific Questions

  1. Why did you grab a third QB when your plan was to take only two?
    It was late in the draft and I decided to take a shot and swing for the fences with Stanton. If he gets a few starts in that offense this year, he might make a big impact for me down the stretch.


  2. You drafted more RBs and WRs (15 of your 24 draft slots) than anyone. Why is this a good strategy to invoke in Survivor leagues?
    I drafted a few Survivor teams this offseason and found that RB and WR depth are key to winning. The depth at those two positions goes the quickest. The talent drop-off happens so fast. There are always decent QBs and TEs later in the draft.


  3. You drafted 4 old WRs (Galloway, age 36; Glenn, age 33; Kennison, age 34; Toomer, age 33). Any concern that they can play a whole season?
    I think I will benefit from each one. Galloway gets a huge QB improvement from last year. Glenn has Romo at QB with another year under his belt. Kennison had six games last year where he had six or more catches, which is great for PPR. Toomer was huge last year before injury. I will be happy with 4-5 huge games again this year. The age of each is not a concern. In fact, I think I know more about what I am getting with them than the younger receivers.



Jason Wood

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    I promised I would remain flexible since I was picking out of the 8 spot and that's exactly what I did. Luckily, Willie Parker, the last of the elite fantasy backs on my board, was there at 8. True to my word, I went WR with my second pick because I saw too much value in Chad Johnson; my top-rated fantasy WR. Having passed on a RB in round 2, I hoped one of my top 20 would be there in the 3rd round and, true enough, Willis McGahee was sitting there. In the 4th round, I grabbed Carson Palmer; who I have ranked as QB1 (yes, ahead of Peyton Manning) as I was willing to take Palmer in the 3rd round in my preseason game plan. My gamble paid off because I was still able to get an excellent QB3 in Marion Barber in the 5th round.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    The next four rounds were very much about getting the best players left on the board. I don't believe in having a set number of positional picks slotted to uniformly. I knew that I wouldn't need another QB in the middle rounds with Palmer on my roster. In the 6th and 7th rounds, I made picks that I felt were necessary to protect against big drop-offs in their respective tiers. Darrell Jackson at WR2 in the 6th was a necessity based on who was left at WR, and then in the 7th Vernon Davis was a must have as he was the last of the elite fantasy tight ends according to my projections.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    My projected starters are elite top to bottom, and barring injury I should be a contender week in, week out. I was able to roster my top-rated QB, WR, and land two of my top-15 running backs. The defenses and kickers I grabbed were exceptional values at such late picks; exactly as I hoped it would play out. I could conceivably have four quality starting QBs if things go as planned in KC and Carolina.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    Like many teams in a Survivor league, depth is an issue. I could just as easily end up with only 2 starting QBs if Huard and Delhomme start the majority of the season; and at RB I only have two guaranteed starters. My WR depth is strong, but individually I don't have a lot of proven studs; with two veterans past their prime, a gimpy turf toe 49ers, and two raw, promising but unproven youngsters to compliment Chad Johnson. My biggest weakness, by far, is my bye week exposure in the key Week 5-6 period.


  5. What were your best picks?
    I loved getting Palmer in the 4th, because I feel he's the best fantasy QB this year. I loved Joe Horn in the 10th, who should catch 70+ passes in Bobby Petrino's offense in Atlanta. And very late, I was quite pleased to land Steve Smith (the rookie) who I think will start over Amani Toomer no later than midseason.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Survivor is all about depth, and I think I let myself get caught in a WR run in the 6th, going with Darrell Jackson was my WR2 despite having reservations about him and the 49ers offense. I'm now beholden somewhat to a 49ers offense that I expect will be very conservative in the passing game; not at all my intent. I also wonder whether it was worth rolling the dice on Nate Burleson, who could be buried on the Seattle depth chart at no better than WR4.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Health is first and foremost. A bit of luck in that my instinctual calls on QBs Croyle and Carr pay off. And finally, that I can navigate some tumultuous bye week waters midseason. Last year, I participated in two Survivor drafts and ended up finishing 2nd in the one where I hated my draft and out of the money in the one where I thought I drafted a killer team.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    I'm pleased with how my team turned out, and the Draft Dominator showed me as undefeated against the league average score, so I've got that going for me! In all seriousness, there were two teams that stuck out to me: Andy Hicks and Dodds. Hicks took Daunte Culpepper before we knew if/where he would end up, now looks like he's got three starting QBs (Big Ben, Culpepper, Rivers). I also like his strategy of handcuffing Steven Jackson and Clinton Portis with their backups. At WR he has seven guys who could all catch 50+ passes in an ideal world, but at least four of them should and then some. As much as it pains me to say, Dodds had another solid draft. He has three surefire starting QBs (Favre, Kitna and Pennington), three solid starting RBs with a potential fourth (Chris Brown). He doesn't have great receivers, and has a major bye week issue in Week 5; but he could still contend if things fall right for him.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    On principle, drafting three kickers and/or three defenses in this format leaves you in the penalty box. With that in mind, Levin's team is a real head scratcher. He drafted Michael Vick, and yet it was already pretty clear that he more than likely wouldn't see the field this year. He also drafted Warrick Dunn, yet we also knew Dunn went under the knife. At RB, he only has one surefire starter (Jamal Lewis), although I personally think DeAngelo Williams and Maurice Jones-Drew will be solid. Inexplicably Levin drafted THREE tight ends and THREE kickers. That just baffles me to no end. While I'm a huge Bloom fan, I wasn't at all a fan of his draft. His RB situation is tenuous from top to bottom. Of his seven backs, none were fantasy stars last year and only Cadillac Williams is expected to start the season as a true feature back. Bloom tried to be strategic and grab three elite wideouts (TO, Steve Smith, Javon Walker), but he's going to pay the price with the weakest RB corps in our league. Last but certainly least (sorry Mike) was Mike Anderson's draft. Three kickers AND three defenses!?!?! Plus only two of his QBs are surefire starters, and I'm seeing too many WR3s in his receiving corps.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    Ronnie Brown in the 3rd round of this PPR league was highway robbery; Cameron has said repeatedly that Brown is going to get tons of carries and will catch a ton of passes from Trent Green to boot. I personally loved my choice of Corey Dillon in the last round. I will be shocked if he doesn't sign with a team in the next month and play a big role in place of an injured starter. I also loved the pickup of Vincent Jackson in the 10th round, he could be an explosive WR1 this year and that's a small price to pay for such upside.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    Again, on principle Adam Vinatieri gets a mention because he was the first kicker off the board (16th round) fully 7 rounds before anyone should have worried about their kicker. I thought taking Portis that high was a very risky move given his injury woes and the presence of Ladell Betts; there were a handful of RBs I would've opted for instead. Finally, taking Lamont Jordan in the 6th round coming off that injury and playing for possibly the worst team in football was a head scratcher.


Team Specific Questions

  1. Even though it worked out for the best, why did you pass on Palmer in the third when your plan was to take him there?
    To be honest, I almost took Palmer but with McGahee sitting there at 3.08 and having already taken a non-RB in the 2nd round, it was a risk I had to take. As you said, it worked out for the best because I do project Palmer to be the top fantasy passer this season; and I got him three rounds later than Peyton Manning.


  2. You seem to have a disproportionate number of quality players off on weeks 5 and 6 (a combined scoring week). Are you concerned with having Carson Palmer, Jay Cutler, Willie Parker, Chad Johnson, Darrell Jackson and Vernon Davis all having a week 5 or 6 bye?
    I'm definitely concerned. These heavy bye weeks (6 teams) made this year's Survivor planning much more difficult. You aren't going to win Survivor with subpar talent, but you also aren't going to win if you're eliminated in an early week because you don't have enough live bodies. I tried using the Draft Dominator to balance bye week considerations, but in a few cases the value was too pronounced to not take who I ended up selecting. It may come back to hurt me, no question.


  3. What are your expectations from Eric Moulds this season?
    Moulds has seen his YPC decline for eight straight seasons, and was below 10 yards per catch last year in Houston. I'm fully aware that he's no longer explosive, and is a plodder who can get open on short and intermediate routes. But he is exactly what Vince Young needs. A sure-handed veteran that will always be beyond the first down marker ready to catch a pass and keep the drive alive. Don't forget that Moulds led the league in catch percentage last season (catching 80% of his targets) and should nab 45-55 passes for 500+ yards and 3 or 4 scores this season if healthy. That's solid value in a PPR league as deep as Survivor I.



Jeff Haseley

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    Taking Peyton Manning with my first pick at 1.09 was a surprise to me. In other words, I wasn't planning on it. I wanted Willie Parker or Travis Henry here, but Jason Wood took Parker one pick before mine at 1.08. I gambled that Henry would come back to me six picks later, which he did. As for my pick of Peyton Manning here, I didn't like the other RBs available at that spot and I didn't want to take a WR with my 1st pick, so I decided on Peyton Manning. I'm glad I was able to get Travis Henry in the 2nd round, because that's who I wanted to pull the trigger on at pick 1.09. Did I take Peyton Manning too early? Probably so, but it gives me the top QB and as long as I manage the rest of my draft well, I'll come out smelling like a rose, or at least that was my plan. Pick 3.09 came to me and there were still some good WRs on the board, but I wanted to solidify my RB2, especially because at the time, I had only one RB and this was the 3rd round and I knew I could get good value at WR a few picks later. If I wanted a good corps of RBs, I had to take another one now, so I took Cedric Benson, who I thought was a great value pick here. Pick 4.04 came 6 slots later and the guy I wanted (Jerious Norwood) was still there. I needed a WR more than a RB3, but I couldn't resist grabbing Norwood here, this might be even better value than Benson. I'm thinking and hoping Norwood will be the feature RB for Atlanta this year with Warrick Dunn getting mainly 3rd down rushes. Great value, in my opinion, however I would now have to wait 17 more picks before taking my first WR.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    I was definitely looking to grab WRs, because my team had none, thanks to my decision to take Peyton Manning with my 1st pick and take Jerious Norwood as my RB3 in the 4th round. It turns out, my next four picks were all WRs. While other teams were looking to find a good RB3 or possibly RB2, I was already solid in that department and needed WRs. The question here is, will my WRs be better value than other people's RB2 and RB3? My thinking was yes and no. I was not going to find an elite WR available, but there were still plenty of good WRs that fall into tier 2 or upper tier 3 that likely would have more value than the disappearing RBs that were still on the board. Who did I take? With the 9th pick in the 5th round, my first WR was Reggie Brown. Here's a player who is the likely choice for WR1 on an Eagles team that was 2nd in total offense last year, including 4th in the NFL in points scored per game. In My opinion, this is a great value here. Brown had 9 TDs last year as the WR2 behind the now departed Donte Stallworth. This year he'll likely be the primary receiving threat (behind Brian Westbrook, that is). Six picks later at 6.04 I took Calvin Johnson. Here's a player that might finish in the WR top 15, because he's an extraordinary talent on a team that focuses on the passing game. Some say Johnson is better than Roy Williams and I have to agree with them. The question is can Johnson be more productive than Williams this year? If that answer is yes, then this is a great pick for me that will justify my decision for waiting on drafting WRs. Johnson is someone I am targeting in all of my drafts this year. I think he's a can't miss player on a team that stresses his strengths. Seventeen picks later I'm looking for my WR3 - Bernard Berrian is staring me in the face and I pull the trigger. Berrian is a player on the rise who could very well take over the WR1 role for the Bears this year. I think his talent level and amount of production he will bring to the Bears is still rising. He's becoming more of a playmaker than just a deep threat and I think we'll see that continue this season. For my fourth WR taken in a row, I decided to go with Donte Stallworth at pick 8.04. Stallworth should be open on every play, mainly due to the presence that Randy Moss will attract, not to mention a powerful running game that can't be ignored. Despite waiting five rounds to take my first WR, I actually really like my WR corps. I have a combination of experience, youth, talent, opportunity, strong offenses and production in those four picks. I would not be surprised to see all of them in the WR top 25 by seasons end.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    First and foremost the QB position, led by Peyton Manning. I suppose Carson Palmer and/or Drew Brees will be the top scoring QB in some weeks, but I like the fact that I will have plenty of weeks where Peyton will lead the way. Did I take him too early? Possibly, but I think I managed my picks well after selecting Manning, for the most part. My QB2 is Jake Delhomme (10.04) and if Steve Smith goes off on any given week, you can bet Delhomme had something to say about it. I'm convinced Delhomme will have a better season this year, which makes this pick more valuable. I have Joey Harrington and Damon Huard on my team as well. I have to be honest, I didn't like the Harrington pick (more on that decision later) but Damon Huard in the 19th round could be a great value. I'm gambling that he'll win the job, but how do you not start a QB that had a 98.0 QB rating that led his team to 6 wins in 9 starts?

    I also like my WR corps, despite waiting until the 5th round to take my first WR. There are no elite WRs on my team, but I do have some great talent that has the capability of putting up solid points every week.

    My RB corps is three, if not four deep and I selected them early enough to focus on other areas later. (Travis Henry, Cedric Benson, Jerious Norwood, DeShaun Foster, Jerome Harrison, Dwayne Wright)


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    I don't have an elite WR and instead will have to rely on hope that at least one of my four WRs taken in rounds 5-8 will have a tremendous season - which is truly possible. I stand by my statement that my first four WR picks (Reggie Brown, Calvin Johnson, Bernard Berrian and Donte Stallworth) have a legit shot at making the WR top 25 by season's end.


  5. What were your best picks?
    I have a few picks that I really liked. Grabbing Calvin Johnson at 6.04 was a great pick for me, especially because he has the ability to put up top five WR scores any given week. Selecting Travis Henry with the 16th overall pick was a steal, in my opinion. I don't think Mike Shanahan liked using the RBBC approach last year and this year he's going to use Henry often, often and often. Henry has repeatedly mentioned that he wants the ball as much as possible and I think Shanahan wants to give it to him. He could reach 1500 total yards with at least 10 TDs this year. He's a first round talent that I was able to get in the second round. I also really like my pick of Bo Scaife in the 21st round. Tennessee loves to use the TE in their offense and Ben Troupe doesn't have the TE1 role etched in stone. Scaife could turn into a player who could reach 35-40 recs. Not too shabby for a 21st round pick. Taking DeShaun Foster at 11.09 was also a very good value pick for me. I last took a RB seven rounds earlier in the fourth round. Everyone is set on thinking DeAngelo Williams is going to take over the primary RB role for Carolina. That might happen, it might not. Foster is still a very good talent on the team and he will be used. He's currently the starting RB and if he plays well, I don't see Carolina taking it away from him.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    I definitely didn't like my picks in the 13th and 14th round. I took Jerome Harrison, my RB5 in the 13th and then Joey Harrington in the 14th. I should've taken a QB in the 13th and then waited on my RB5 with someone like Noah Herron or Lorenzo Booker later on. I like Jerome Harrison, but it was not the place to take him. That move resulted in me having to take a QB3 as they were quickly disappearing (there are only 32 starting QBs out there). One pick before Harrison was Tarvaris Jackson, who I would've taken if I didn't take Harrison. It was either him or JaMarcus Russell and I chose Harrington. We don't even know if he's going to be the starter week 1. It was a horrible pick, in my opinion. The worst pick of the draft for me and it was set up by taking Harrison. I should've taken Trent Green in the 12th round instead of Michael Jenkins, which would've given me time to take a RB and WR in the 13th and 14th. Ahhh hindsight - ain't it terrible?


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Peyton will have to continue to be Peyton, for starters and if Cedric Benson flops as the starting RB in Chicago, I don't necessarily like my chances. My top 4 WRs will have to continue to rise. I need them to exceed last year's numbers and I need Calvin Johnson to tear up the league.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    This is very difficult, because I think we all had a pretty good draft. I like Dodds team, but I don't think the Minnesota WR trio will pay off the way he thinks. I like Andy Hicks team. He has a good QB trio of Roethlisberger, Rivers and Culpepper. Especially after the news of Culpepper signing with Oakland. His team has a good mix of talent and it could be the best if Mike Furrey can continue where he left off and if Michael Clayton can rebound with Jeff Garcia throwing him the ball. As for the 3rd best team, I like David Yudkin's combo of Bulger and McNabb at QB, plus the Gates pick, not to mention Shaun Alexander, Tatum Bell and Maroney for a RB trio. His WRs are good, not great, but it's a nice compliment to a strong squad. Taking Priest Holmes was a gamble, but he could afford to take it. I really like this team. The more I think about it, it might be my favorite.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    Does anyone really have a bad team? If Tony Romo flops or goes down, Jeff Tefertiller's team is in trouble. I'm not a big fan of Glenn or Galloway, so that doesn't bode well for my opinion. I think Mike Anderson is weak at QB and that was enough for me to put him on this list. The other team that I have questions about is Cecil's team of youth and inexperience. He has some strengths, but there are a lot of question marks. His 7th and 8 picks were used to take Brandon Jackson and Michael Turner. I can see that wanted to take LT's handcuff, but those 7th and 8th and even 9th round (Welker) picks could've gone to other people that would've really solidified that team.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    I think Wood's pick of Eric Moulds at 16.05 was a steal. The Daunte Culpepper pick at 18.11 by Hicks was also a great value. Jason Wood took a gamble with Corey Dillon in the 24th round. If Dillon signs and starts, that could be huge.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    I probably have to include my pick of Peyton Manning with the 9th overall pick here. Sticking with me, I think I took Jerome Harrison too early. It screwed up my QB3 pick, by deciding to take Harrison there. As I mentioned, that combo of picks was an awful decision. I didn't like the Priest Holmes pick, but I can see the logic behind it.


Team Specific Questions

  1. You were one of the teams that selected 4 QBs despite taking the #1 consensus QB in Manning. Why the need for the 4th QB?
    I was simply taking Huard, because I didn't like my Joey Harrington pick. There were not many players I really needed or wanted at the time, maybe I could've taken a kicker here that would've been a slight improvement over Josh Scobee, but I elected to go with Huard here. I can't be the only one that thinks he'll win the starting job in KC? As I said before, how can the Chiefs bench him after what he accomplished last season?


  2. You drafted Jerome Harrison about 4 rounds earlier than ADP. What are your expectations from him this season?
    I didn't like this pick, after I made it. I like Harrison - liked him last year too, but I agree it was too early to take him. My 13th and 14th picks were brutal. On the flip side, I don't see Jamal Lewis playing the entire season, plus Harrison is going to get many looks on 3rd down. He should be able to get at least 30 receptions, as that's his bread and butter. He's a scat back whose forte is his receiving capabilities. It can't be that bad, but Lorenzo Booker was taken right after, which would've been a better pick. Again, that darn hindsight.


  3. You seem to have many deep threat WRs on this team. Was that by choice? And if so explain why this strategy works well in this format?
    Absolutely not by choice. It just worked out that way. I was going for the best available WRs, because of my decision to draft other positions earlier. My first choice was to get WRs that were the primary receivers for their team. If that was not available, I wanted to get WRs that were a part of a thriving offense.



Sigmund Bloom

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    Once Willie Parker went, the last of my top seven RBs, I knew I was going WR, the only question was whether someone would take Steve Smith before my pick. I considered an RB at the second pick, but I have TO in the top WR tier, and I felt the RB value would last longer than the WR value because of the league set up. The 3rd round became more interesting when Gates was still there. I passed on him because I felt that I could still get one of my top 8 TE at the 7-8 turn. I saw a big drop-off at WR after Javon Walker and opted for him over many solid RBs because I saw the WR run continuing long enough for me to get a solid RB at 5.10. I just missed on Brandon Jacobs and Marion Barber, so this strategy somewhat backfired. Cadillac Williams and Thomas Jones were my top choices in the 4th, I went with Cadillac because I believe he offers more upside.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    After getting three WRs in my first four picks, WR became a lesser priority in 4-8. I just wanted to get one credible WR3 to be my every-week flex. I was going best RB left in the 5th, and wanted to also fill my QB1 and TE1 in the next four picks.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    Obviously my WRs with Smith, TO, and Walker. I also think some people underestimated the importance of kicker with all FGs over 30 yards being worth their yardage instead of just three points. This increased the variance of kicker scoring, and the value of kickers compared to other positions. I used three late picks to get three of my top ten kickers and hope to use that position to make up some of what I lose at RB2.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    Running back is a clear weakness, and I took a big hit when Fred Taylor was the best RB left at 5.10. I only invested one pick from round 6 to round 12 in RBs, instead choosing to go with a collection of late round picks that I expect to be primary backups to backs that could miss a few games and yield a few goal line carries. I would have also liked to get a better QB2 than Alex Smith, but having Drew Brees as my #1 and a third QB who is the clear starter for his team in Tarvaris Jackson helps offset that weakness.


  5. What were your best picks?
    Cadillac Williams at 4.03, Drew Brees at 6.03, and Alge Crumpler at 7.10 all represent value as some of the last players available in a tier at their position. Lorenzo Booker is an excellent receiver and big play threat and should contribute a few RB2 games from 13.10. Baltimore is an elite attack defense and they added a great return threat in Yamon Figurs and they should have gone before the late 11th round.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Walker over an RB in the 3rd, as the RB value did not last as long as I anticipated. Taking Alex Smith over an RB like LenDale White in the 10th - planning on taking three QBs and having a stud for my #1, I should have de-emphasized the importance of my #2 and instead focused on RB, my weakest position. I could have waited until the 23/24 turn to take my #2 defense, and instead taken Ron Dayne, another backup RB I was targeting.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Fred Taylor and Cadillac Williams have to stay healthy and productive. I will need to get 4-6 playable weeks from my backup RB committee. My kicker strategy will need to work and yield 10-12 points per week, and the Ravens will need to have another excellent season on defense and special teams.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?


    • Jason Wood - a great set of three RBs, all taken at value picks. He can have an RB as his every-week flex and he didn't overpay to set that up. His QB and TE are both anchored with excellent options. Wood's WRs are a little shaky, but he should only have to count on three, and they will be very strong if Vincent Jackson continues his momentum from late 2006.


    • David Dodds - He put together a three-headed QBBC that should put him among the best QB scorers in the league. Like Wood, he got three top producing RBs without overpaying (1st+3rd+5th). Taking the top three Minnesota WRs was shrewd and it should yield a startable score each week to combine with Ward. Holmes and Housh/Perry. This team should have no trouble being one of the top flex scorers each week.


    • David Yudkin - McNabb and Bulger should be the highest scoring QB combination in the league, and Gates should put Yudkin among the top TE scorers. To make up for a WR weakness - lacking a true #1 - Yudkin spent six out of eight picks (7-14) on WR and got a field of quality options that should yield 2-3 startable scores a week. Getting Morris to backup Maroney was crucial, and he took him a pick before I was going to snag the NE backup.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?


    • Sigmund Bloom - It's harsh to admit, but my team ended up having a big hole when the RB value dried up before 5.10. I'll need some big performances from Brees, Baltimore, and the best of my kicker trio to stay alive through September.


    • Andy Hicks - This team is going to be very dependent on the Washington offense. Four of the first seven picks were spent on Redskins. If the Skins get shut out, this team is toast. Andy did a good job protecting Cooley with two quality backup TEs, and he does have Lynch to help as an RB3, but Andy's team lacks a WR3 candidate with any punch, and doesn't seem like it will have a top half defense or QB performance most weeks.


    • Jeff Haseley - I thought Jeff could have used a third defense or kicker more than a fourth (or even third) QB because he spent his first round pick on Peyton Manning. Not taking a WR until the 5th round could be costly, especially if Donte Stallworth or Bernard Berrian get banged up or Calvin Johnson has a long holdout and slow start. I also thought that WR strategy then demanded spending 8 or more picks on WR to help offset the risk. Foster and Harrison seemed like overkill picks after spending three of the first four picks on RBs.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?


    • 5.06 Brandon Jacobs - Feature back, will catch passes and score all of the TDs. Survivor format increases his value.


    • 7.08 Vernon Davis - Should put up at least 4 or 5 of the top 20 TE weeks because of his big play ability.


    • 8.06 Tony Romo - Put up QB1 numbers last year and his up and down pattern last year is offset in survivor.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?


    • 1.09 Peyton Manning - Survivor and scoring devalues Manning.


    • 2.07 T.J. Houshmandzadeh - Good chance he would have been there a round later.


    • 5.05 Chris Chambers - With the offense in flux under a new regime, an aging vet at QB, and an offensive line filled with question marks, there are safer picks at WR in the 5th.


Team Specific Questions

  1. Why did you take a QB far earlier than you had planned?
    I saw Brees as the last of the elite QB tier, and I felt taking him would allow me to wait until the 9/10 turn to take a backup and get the last of the solid #2 QBs. I try to plan my drafts to have my picks line up with the end of tiers on my draft board.


  2. You came out of the gate and drafted three stud WRs with your first picks. Explain this approach and why you think this strategy can win this league drafting from the 10th spot.
    WR is generally an up and down position, and I took three guys who I think will be the consistent centerpiece of their team's passing game, and keep me among the top WR scorers every week. I have built this team to be a middle of the pack team everywhere, as opposed to a top scorer, but have anchored with studs at QB, TE, and Defense to offset the lack of punch at RB. I did expect the WR run to continue and allow me to harvest more value at RB at 5.10 and 6.03 and that part of the plan did not come to fruition.


  3. What are your expectations from Lorenzo Booker this season?
    I expect Booker to catch 40-50 balls out of the backfield and sometimes lined up wide, and break a few for long gains or TDs. I also expect the Dolphins to give him at least a few carries a game, and again his speed and elusiveness should help him break a few of those. Booker is one of the best open field threats on the team and Cam Cameron should find ways to get the ball in his hands.



David Yudkin

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?


    • ROUND ONE: Alexander is a decent bet to hit 1,500 yards and 15 TD as he's done it in the past. He's rarely used in the passing game so his value takes a hit in this format, but he's still a good bet to rank in the Top 10 if he can get in the end zone like he used to.


    • ROUND TWO: Maroney has a lot of upside if healthy. While he won't see all of Dillon's production combined with his own, he still could make a run at 15 touchdowns and clearly is the featured back in New England. Like Alexander, he could see 1,500/15.


    • ROUND THREE: The massive wide receiver run put a kink in my draft strategy and the WR talent I had scoped out were long gone. With 15 WR already off the board, Gates projected scoring total on the year was as good or better than any wide receiver still available, so I opted to take him over the other marginal WR1s left on the board.


    • ROUND FOUR: Burress was the last player I had on my board that I felt could be a Top 10 receiver and clearly at that point I needed to address the WR position.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    I ended up on the wrong side of the positional runs early. The top running backs went quickly and I really did not have a shot at the truly elite producers. The WR run in the second and third left me behind the 8-ball there as well. There were more RBs available than I anticipated in Round Five, but I felt it was too soon to add more RB depth. Having lost out on the elite WRs, my plan shifted to try to get more top tier scoring from other positions (TE and QB).


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    Taking two QBs early, I should have decent QB production and adding Gates should give me top tier production from those two spots. My top three RBs could all be big value plays by the end of the season if things pan out and I'll need that to stay in the hunt from week to week.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    Other teams clearly trump mine at the WR spot and in a PPR league that's not a good thing. I have a crop of NFL WR2s, which again is probably less than ideal. Health could also be a factor as I have several players with questionable health and injury concerns.


  5. What were your best picks?
    I think given the options available my 7-10th picks will prove to be solid (Greg Jennings, Tatum Bell, Kevin Curtis, and Ronald Curry). Reading the predraft comments, all of these guys were on the players to target section. Jennings was great out of the gate last year and actually was producing better than Donald Driver (who currently has his own questions involving his shoulder). I have little faith in Kevin Jones returning anytime soon and he may not be 100%, leaving Tatum Bell as the primary ball carrier in Detroit. Curtis could surprise in PHI and Curry could emerge as the #1 receiver in OAK. I'm also hoping for good things out of David Martin this year.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Many people will scratch their heads after I went QB-QB in the 5th and 6th (which I'll address in a later question). I also took some ribbing for drafting Priest Holmes in almost the 18th round. While Holmes is unlikely to be an impact player ever again, I could see him potentially filling a Dillon/Bettis/Marcus Allen role, which would be way more valuable than the investment it took to acquire him. There's a better chance that he does nothing, but in my opinion it was worth the risk. As it stands now, Antonio Bryant looks like a wasted pick but if he gets picked up soon he could chip in 50-800-3 even being suspended for two games. Brady Quinn needs to get in camp or he'll have been a wasted pick.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    I need health from my studs and I need my receivers to out produce the numbers many are projecting them to produce. Players like Devery Henderson, Matt Jones, and Drew Bennett need to have some weeks where they go off (which has been their trend in the first place).


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    I like Tefertiller's squad. His list of WR that will contribute goes on and on and he's got at least one big scorer at the other spots. Dodds is a stocked and well-balanced team. He came away with 3 starting RB and QB. I also like Hicks' team. Jackson and Portis at RB blended with 3 productive TEs and decent QBs could equate to a lengthy run into the season.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    I think all the teams are all capable of staying in the hunt, but if someone put a gun to my head to list three teams with question marks:


    • With the first pick in the draft, Lammey had the chance to bury the rest of us. Having LT should be enough to keep him in the hunt almost single-handedly, but he loaded up on rookies and unproven players, which is taking on too much risk when already in the driver's seat.


    • I don't love Levin's running backs, as Jones-Drew and Williams may see a limited workload early and if things don't pan out quickly they might be their most productive after this team was eliminated.


    • Haseley took Manning early, and a rough week from Manning could pose a problem. That played into him having fewer true studs at WR and TE.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    I think DeShaun Foster will be the starter in Carolina, so getting a potential starting RB in the 11th round is huge. Maurice Stovall is on the verge of starting in TB, making him a high upside pick at 16.11. Ronnie Brown falling into the third round seems almost criminal.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    I don't see any that jump out me as exceedingly or glaringly out of whack, but ones that I probably would not have taken that early include DeAngelo Williams at 4.01 (I don't see him starting or getting the workload to justify his draft spot), Calvin Johnson at 6.04 (rookie WRs are hard to predict and rely on), and Darrell Jackson at 6.05 (banged up a lot on a team with marginal passing totals).


Team Specific Questions

  1. Why did you take a pair of QBs in the fifth and sixth rounds when your plan was to wait until the seventh to address the position?
    As I outlined above, I felt my RB and WR scoring was potentially going to be average and needed to get some plus differential to boost my overall scoring from week to week. McNabb and Bulger have historically been in the Top 3 in QB PPG and that should offset what likely will be moderate WR scoring. I had hoped to have two better WR by that point and the WR run squashed that plan.


  2. You didn't take your third WR until round 9 opting for quantity over quality at the position. Explain why you feel this approach can be successful in this format.
    In other Survivor leagues I've been in I invested heavily at WR early and still got mediocre WR scoring with the studs seemingly all scoring well the same weeks and all having down weeks at the same time. I have found having more WR can offset the lack of marquee names. And as I mentioned in earlier questions, I have a handful of players that I see as potentially doing a lot better than the masses think.


  3. You selected Greg Jennings about a round before his ADP. What do you like about his game and situation this season?
    Jennings started last year on fire and for the first month of the season was more productive than Donald Driver was. Brett Favre has thrown 600+ passes each of the past two seasons and the running game has some questions after the loss of Ahman Green. Historically the Packers have had several WR2s with decent fantasy production. And Jennings was drafted no earlier than many other WRs due to the hoarding of WRs early in the draft.



Marc Levin

General Questions

  1. Take us through your decision making through the first 4 rounds. Who did you consider taking and why did you select the player you did?
    As per my predraft strategy, since I was drafting from the 12-hole, I knew at least 2 RBs would be on my team by the time I picked at 4.01. I was not enthralled with the RB options at the end of the first round. 9 RBs were gone, but only 1 QB and 1 WR were selected. Therefore, I felt my best move was to concentrate on receptions in a PPR league. I decided to go with a pass catching RB and a consistent WR. Holt was the easy decision for me at that turn. Chad Johnson was a passing consideration, but I think Holt's reception and target consistency will ultimately outscore CJ's potential for TDs and yardage.

    The only remaining RBs I considered worth the 1.12 were Maurice Jones-Drew, Rudi Johnson, and Travis Henry. Jones-Drew has more explosive potential, though Henry will probably be a more consistent yardage RB this year. I strongly considered Rudi, but I like Jones-Drew's receiving potential (under this scoring system, he had 100 points in receiving numbers in 2006). Rudi Johnson does not accumulate very many receiving numbers.

    At the 3-4 turn, it was essential that I land another starting quality RB, and Williams is another uber-talented RB who catches the ball well (33 catches on 37 targets and an average of 9.5 per catch in 2006). I planned to add Foster later, but that was not meant to be. Drafting Moss as my WR2 behind Holt was really a no-brainer. I have him ranked in my top-12 WRs. A revitalized Moss, a consistent Holt, and my decision at that point to concentrate on accumulating PPR numbers lands me one of the best receiving crews in the league.


  2. After selecting these 4 players, did your predraft strategy change? If so, in what ways? What were you looking to do within your next 4 picks (rounds 5-8)?
    Yes, it changed - as mentioned above, I decided that the RB options were weak, but the receiving options were strong. I committed myself to accumulating a great receiving crew, and relatively equal value at all other spots. My team is not built around the run - it is built around receptions and consistency at the non-RB spots. Therefore, I committed myself to spending the next set of picks (at the 5-6 turn) on WRs and the following set of picks (at the 7-8 turn) at QB. Adding Branch and Clayton as my third and fourth WRs really rounds out the top of my WR crew.

    I felt extremely fortunate with my next two picks of Matt Hasselbeck at 7.12 and Jamal Lewis at 8.01. I see Matt Hasselbeck as a top-5 QB, yet I didn't have to pay a high price to get him. Moreover, getting a QB of Hasselbeck's quality with such good value (he carries a 6th round ADP) allowed me to vacate a typical strategy I employ when drafting from the ends. From the ends, I usually draft QBs back to back so that I have two of relatively equal value. Even if neither are projected to finish in the top-5, their combined value usually carries the position for me. Drafting a top-5 QB at 7.12 allowed me to instead take Jamal Lewis, who was the last remaining starting RB with reasonable upside potential. I was happy to be able to surround my top-5 QB with 3 RBs and 4 WRs.


  3. What are the strengths of your team?
    Clearly, receivers. A rotation of Holt, Moss, Branch, Mark Clayton, Bobby Engram, Keenan McCardell, Josh Reed, Dan Graham (TE), Ben Watson (TE) and Ben Troupe (TE) will probably see a lot of points this year. My starting WR spots, flex spot, and TE spot are set. With the flex spot open to any RB/WR/TE, the likelihood of leaving a solid receiving day out of my weekly score is low. Consequently, I am not "overloaded" at receiver to the detriment of my weekly bottom line.


  4. What are the weaknesses of your team?
    QB3 and RBs are my weakness. If Jones-Drew and Williams don't have big seasons, I am relying on questionable vets. Jamal Lewis, Warrick Dunn and Reuben Droughns might fill in on a week or two, but I need early season success from Williams and Jones-Drew in order to survive for very long. Week 4 (when Jones-Drew is on a bye) might be my toughest week to survive. If Vick does not return, I will go the entire year with only two QBs while most teams have 3 QBs and some have 4. Falling behind at QB is dangerous. If Hasselbeck and Manning stay healthy, however, QB3 is not a significant weakness for me.


  5. What were your best picks?
    I liked getting Warrick Dunn at 11.12. I also liked backing up Hasselbeck with Eli Manning at 10.01. My late round WRs (Engram in round 15 and McCardell in round 20) really rounded out the depth of my already solid receiving crew. Like him or hate him this year, a starting RB like Jamal Lewis at 8.01 is tremendous value. If he is fed the ball a lot early in the year, he might at least help me survive Jones-Drew's week 4 bye.


  6. What were your worst picks?
    Probably Michael Vick on my team, period. It will probably be a wasted pick, and it was made merely because I have a gut feeling he will play in the NFL this year. All objective evidence indicates he will be suspended for the entire year. I may not need a QB3 at all since Hasselbeck and Manning are strong starters, but if I do, I may have sunk myself by rolling the dice on Vick.


  7. What will need to happen for this team to advance to the playoffs?
    Health at QB1 and QB2 will be essential. If Vick comes back, my QB rotation is one of the strongest in the league. But, if he does not, I am the thinnest team in the league at QB. I also need my RB crew to live up to its potential if I am to keep pace with the stronger teams later in the season. Almost anything else can happen and I should be safe at WR, TE, flex, K, and D. But, to survive to the final four, I will need my QBs to stay healthy and I will need my RBs to perform well.


  8. Including your team, who are the 3 best teams? Why?
    With the quality of these drafters, and with the survivor format, the relevance of best or worst teams is questionable. But, I think some teams currently look like they have a better chance of avoiding elimination than other teams.

    I like Dave Baker's and Jason Wood's teams. I like the redundancy Dave created by drafting four starting QBs, the Oakland RB handcuff as his RB3 behind Frank Gore and Ronnie Brown, three TEs, three PKs, and very solid talent behind Marvin Harrison at WR. Jason surrounded his top RB talent of Willie Parker, Willis McGahee and Marion Barber with a good blend of solid performers and upside potential at the non-RB spots. Plus, he selected his Eagles' defense, so he's bound for success. After those teams is a drop to a tier of teams that includes my team due to its receiving strength. The "third best" tier also includes the teams assembled by Jeff Pasquino, David Dodds, and Mike Anderson. Of those teams (mine included), I give the edge to Mike Anderson. Mike has a deficiency at QB, but that is his only weakness. He built a solid WR crew and will be able to include three RBs' scores most weeks as he selected Larry Johnson, Rudi Johnson (one of the steals of the draft) and Ahman Green.


  9. Who are the 3 worst teams? Why?
    No team in this league is a bad team and, under this format, any team can make the playoffs. That said, I don't like the composition of some of the teams.

    I don't like how Sigmund built his team. Like my team, his team strength is at receivers. He opened the draft WR-WR, but he did not build as much depth as I did. I don't like his WRs behind Steve Smith, Terrell Owens, and Javon Walker. He sacrificed at RB to amass those receivers. Therefore, he will have a problem with his flex spot after his starting WR/RB numbers are accumulated. While Brees is a nice QB1, I don't like his QB2 or QB3. Brees is on a bye in week 4, when only that week's score determines survival. Combining all those factors, Sig may see his exit in week 4 or in any early season week where Brees does not perform well.

    I also don't like Cecil's decision to amass young and unproven talent to carry his team. His nucleus of Tomlinson, Brady, Colston, Andre Johnson, and Adrian Peterson was a good start. And, it is not that I dislike the players he decided to add behind them. I feel that reaching for so many players well above their ADP prevented him from adding better players at certain spots (most notably, TE and backup QB). I think Cecil needs too many of those unproven talents to reach their potential early in the season to survive the single elimination weeks. He could have avoided that by selecting stronger players at his weaker positions and then selecting the unproven talent closer to their ADP. Cecil knows football talent, though, and if his young team bursts out the gate strong, he will look like a genius.

    Finally, I really do not like David Yudkin's receiving crew. In a PPR league, that could be death earlier rather than later. I also dislike his shallow group of RBs. The rest of his team is good, so he may surprise the league if his starters stay healthy.


  10. What 3 players were the steals of the entire draft?
    Rudi Johnson at 3.03 when he carried a 9th overall ADP. The guy could end the season anywhere from the RB5 to the RB8, and he has had 1300+ rush yards and 12 TDs each of the last three seasons. As his RB2 behind potential #1 overall fantasy RB Larry Johnson, that was a huge pick for Mike Anderson.

    Devery Henderson at 11.11, especially since Dave Yudkin stole him one draft spot before I was going to take him. The Saints' WR2 at the end of the 11th round? Henderson finished as the WR34 on only 54 targets last year. Given New Orleans' propensity to throw the ball, he should end up in the top-24 this year.

    Warrick Dunn at 11.12. Dunn has never finished below RB27. His injury will keep him out only until the season starts and I am unconvinced that Jerious Norwood (who went at 4.04) will carry the starting role without significant help from Dunn. Moreover, with Vick likely sidelined for the year and with Harrington not a particularly mobile QB, the Falcons will be funneling their running game through their RBs more than in previous years. If Dunn does not lose his starting RB spot to Norwood, 11.12 was a big steal for a starting RB.


  11. What 3 players were the biggest reaches?
    Cecil's selections of Wes Welker at 9.01 when Welker carries a 14th round ADP and is ranked even lower by the consensus of the staff was an extremely questionable move. That pick would have been much better spent at QB2 or TE - or even at a better WR4. Welker would certainly have been available at Cecil's 12.12 and 13.01 selections.

    Jerious Norwood at 4.04 when he carries a 57th overall ADP. Selected between the drafter's 4.04 selection and his 5.09 selection were Thomas Jones, Deuce McAllister, Ahman Green, Marion Barber III, some other RBs, and a host of solid starting WRs. Dunn's herniated disc surgery is worrisome, but is not season threatening. Whether Norwood will get to start on a Falcons offense that is in shambles without Vick is questionable. A starting role does not preclude Dunn from stealing a lot of touches. Way too high a price given the talent existing on the board. Even if the drafter wanted Norwood on his team, the advice in a survivor league is to take a more consistent player and hope your player falls to your next pick. In a redraft league, the drafter can compensate for a reach like Norwood, but, in survivor, the drafter has exhausted one of his valuable early picks on a reach with no way to compensate.

    Peyton Manning at 1.09. I have written tomes about how selecting a QB in the first round handcuffs the rest of a normal redraft league draft. The drafter is forced to compensate and play catch-up the rest of the way while other drafters are adding their "almost as good" QB three rounds later. In a survivor format, where best score is automatically selected, it is even more important to avoid a QB in the first round. In my opinion, the first QB should not be selected in a survivor league until after nearly all the other top-24 talent is expended - that means the end of the second round. Manning certainly would have been available at 2.04, but that is not even the point. Taking the QB1 in this format should be perceived as playing hot potato. At some point someone will have to grab him, but you try to put it off to the next drafter if WR/RB options exist.


Team Specific Questions

  1. You were one of the drafters to grab 3 TEs and 3 PKs. Explain why depth at these positions is important in this format?
    I am not sure it is important in this format, but it is doable given the incredibly large roster size. And taking three at each spot goes with my strategy of trying to amass top-5 scoring at all non-RB spots.

    I took 3 PKs because, as we all know, PKs score a lot every year. Tynes as my PK3 behind two very good PKs gives me one more opportunity to make sure I have one of the top-5 PK scores every week. Though there is little difference between PKs' season fantasy totals, there is a drop off every week from the highest scoring PKs. It seems that, on a weekly basis, a small number of PKs score really big and can actually carry a fantasy team. Given my weakness at RB, I will need consistent top-5 scoring from my other non-RB spots to keep pace and I increase my odds of doing so by carrying three PKs.

    I took three TEs because I am insuring a solid starting TE score each week and giving myself the opportunity for my second highest scoring TE to pull up my flex spot. My team is built on receiving. If my TE2 scores well, I can get his score into my starting lineup through the flex spot. The three TEs I chose are well utilized by their teams in the receiving game. For Troupe and Graham, by default, they may be their team's second or third receiving option on many plays. Having three TEs gives me greater opportunity to amass either a better flex score or a better starting TE score.


  2. Are you worried that 2 of your 3 QBs, 2 of your 6 RBs and 3 of your 7 WRs all are off on week 8?
    Since that is one of the combined scoring weeks, I am not overly concerned. I am slightly worried about having only Eli Manning versus the Dolphins as my QB that week, but that is not significantly different than any other team that has their QB1 on a bye. The other losses do not concern me. Active that week are my RB1, RB2, WR1, WR2, all three of my TEs, and some depth behind my starting WRs and RBs. The reason I drafted deep at receivers, including TE, was to cover situations like this.


  3. You selected Deion Branch about a round earlier than ADP. What do you like about his game and situation this season?
    I have always liked Branch's ability to stretch the field and to make the big catch downfield. I absolutely love his situation as the primary receiver in Seattle. In 14 games last year, he had 101 targets. Darrell Jackson had 112 targets in 13 games. The team tosses the ball to its primary receivers a tremendous amount. Branch should finally crest the 1000 yard plateau. I selected him at 5.12, 60th overall. He carries a 62nd overall ADP, so I didn't reach for him. There was a big WR run early in the draft, so a lot of the top end WR pool had evaporated by the end of the 5th round. At that point in the draft, I was committed to building my team through receivers, so I selected the two receivers I had at the top of my list. Neither he nor the other receiver I selected (Mark Clayton) would have lasted until my 7.12 selection. If I wanted Branch and Clayton on my team (which I did) I had to select them where I did.