Adam Levitan

Football Daily Dose

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Midseason Mock

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The first eight weeks don’t matter. The stats, the plays, the bad beats, the joy -- it’s all irrelevant now.

All that matters is the rest of the season. And with that in mind, the Rotoworld crew gathered for a Midseason Mock on Wednesday afternoon. Here were the parameters:

* 10 team snake draft
* Half a point per reception
* Owners must fill QB, RB, RB, WR, WR, WR, TE, FLEX. Nothing more, nothing less.
* Only stats going forward, through the rest of the 2012 season, matter. It's a spin on our Top-200 going forward list, available in the Season Pass.

The results:

1.1 Arian Foster (Nick Mensio)
1.2 Ray Rice (Mike Clay)
1.3 Adrian Peterson (Mike Gallagher)
1.4 LeSean McCoy (Jeff Ratcliffe)
1.5 Stevan Ridley (Pat Daugherty)
1.6 Jamaal Charles (Josh Norris)
1.7 Calvin Johnson (Adam Levitan)
1.8 A.J. Green (Chet Gresham)
1.9 Ryan Mathews (Evan Silva)
1.10 Trent Richardson (Chris Wesseling)

Notes: The first four picks are no-brainers. Arian Foster, Ray Rice and LeSean McCoy are slump-proof backs because they excel in the passing game and are their team’s goal-line back. Adrian Peterson has absolutely squashed concerns (from people like me) that he rushed back from last year’s ACL tear. Peterson looks better than ever. … It gets hairy after those first four. Here’s Pat Daugherty’s sermon on his surprising Stevan Ridley selection:

"Why Stevan Ridley at No. 5? Why not Stevan Ridley at No. 5. Forget that he’s fourth in rushing and fifth in rushing yards per game. How about the fact that half of his eight starts have produced 100-yard afternoons? How about the fact that despite a common perception New England has a committee backfield, Ridley is fourth in the league in carries, and has touched the ball fewer than 15 times only once? Even then (Week 3), he took the rock 13 times. How about the fact that he’s averaging 4.8 yards per carry? If none of that’s enough for you, why not consider that he’s a part of the league’s most potent overall offense? A unit that’s flirted with 90 plays multiple times this season? Or that as fall turns to winter in New England, the Pats will likely be even more inclined to run the ball? If none of that’s enough for you, get superficial. The Patriots’ schedule is a joke down the stretch. Ridley looks like an outright beast to the naked eye. Why take Stevan Ridley at No. 5? Because it would be insane not to."  

Calvin Johnson is fantasy’s No. 19 wideout in half-PPR formats. No worries. I took him seventh overall here banking on a regression to the mean. In other words, he has just one touchdown now. I’d be stunned if he didn’t finish with at least eight. Titus Young is going to open more things up for Johnson than Nate Burleson ever could. … Ryan Mathews has been in the doghouse for much of his five appearances this season. He’s still averaging 98.8 total yards per game. Upside monster.

2.1 Percy Harvin (Chris Wesseling)
2.2 Darren McFadden (Evan Silva)
2.3 Matt Forte (Chet Gresham)
2.4 Victor Cruz (Adam Levitan)
2.5 Rob Gronkowski (Josh Norris)
2.6 C.J. Spiller (Pat Daugherty)
2.7 Marshawn Lynch (Jeff Ratcliffe)
2.8 Doug Martin (Mike Gallagher)
2.9 Julio Jones (Mike Clay)
2.10 Reggie Wayne (Nick Mensio)

Notes: Some of you may be wondering where the likes of Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and Robert Griffin III are. It’s really just simple logic. Only 10 quarterbacks will be drafted in this league and the position -- as it always is -- is really deep. Raw value doesn’t always equal drafting value. Many owners are probably realizing this as they try to trade in their league. If you drafted Rodgers and RG3, moving one for the haul you expect isn’t happening. Same can be said if Peyton Manning was your QB2. In 10- or 12-team leagues, the market for quarterbacks just isn’t there.

Percy Harvin is currently the No. 1 wideout in this format. … Michael Bush played just five snaps in Week 8. This is Matt Forte’s backfield. … I had a tough decision between Victor Cruz and Julio Jones. I went with Cruz as the better bet for weekly consistency in receptions. … The C.J. Spiller pick is interesting because he’s in a clear, even timeshare with Fred Jackson.  Still, Spiller can change a fantasy game on just 12-15 touches. … Marshawn Lynch drops in this format because he has caught 11 passes in eight games. … Doug Martin lost his All-Pro left guard Carl Nicks on Tuesday. It’s a ding, but not a death blow by any means.

3.1 Frank Gore
3.2 Aaron Rodgers
3.3 Demaryius Thomas
3.4 Drew Brees
3.5 Jordy Nelson
3.6 Darren Sproles
3.7 Jonathan Stewart
3.8 Robert Griffin III
3.9 Alfred Morris
3.10 Jimmy Graham

Notes: Demaryius Thomas is a freakish talent catching passes from a healthy Peyton Manning. Nothing can go wrong. … If Jordy Nelson didn’t have this minor hamstring tweak, I’m certain he would have gone much earlier. … I took Jonathan Stewart here because the Panthers have essentially given up on DeAngelo Williams. Even if he’s not traded at the deadline, Stewart is the feature back. The Daily Show is about to open some eyes. … Alfred Morris doesn’t play in the passing game, but no Shananigans here. He’s done nothing but impress as a downhill, one-cut runner. … A healthy Jimmy Graham is a dominant Jimmy Graham. The ankle looked sound on Sunday night.

4.1 Tom Brady
4.2 Aaron Hernandez
4.3 Reggie Bush
4.4 Chris Johnson
4.5 Brandon Marshall
4.6 Peyton Manning
4.7 Vincent Jackson
4.8 Matthew Stafford
4.9 Ahmad Bradshaw
4.10 Matt Ryan

Notes: Aaron Hernandez is a risky pick due to the questions surrounding his ankle, but the upside is certainly there. … I took the bait on Chris Johnson. He’ll be inconsistent, but how many backs with elite speed can we say will push for 20 touches weekly? And get him in the fourth round? … I was a little surprised that Peyton Manning and Matthew Stafford were selected before Matt Ryan, but it’s really just another sign of depth at the position.

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Adam Levitan is in his seventh season covering football and basketball for Rotoworld. He won the Fantasy Sports Writers Association award for Best Series in 2011 and 2009, and ESPN's overall fantasy football title in 2000. Find him on Twitter.
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