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Pro Sports Wrap - by Sam Ruesler

Pro Sports Wrap - November 2010

2010 Week 12 All-Stars

November 30th 2010 16:18
My fantasy team went bezerk in the points scoring category, netting 111 while my opponent had a respectable 95 points. My team was carried by 20 points performances by Welker and Brady. I play fantasy, but I have a huge problem with the fact that people that do not know much about the X's and O's and real football base their decisions on players of fantasy. That's why you see people think- in their twisted minds- that Randy Moss is better than Larry Fitzgerald. What a laugh.

This week, I put together a decent 12-4 record in predicting. I didn't get the post done as I was on vacation, but that was my record in my tournament group with my friends. * Denotes fantasy team player. We also have finally added a kicker into our All-Stars. As always, enjoy; comment; and disagree- most of all, I might add.

QB Tom Brady*
QB Kyle Orton
RB Jamaal Charles
RB Brian Westbrook
WR Dwayne Bowe
WR Deion Branch
WR Ben Obomanu
TE Jason Witten
DE Jason Pierre-Paul
DT Kyle Williams
DE Trent Cole
LB Kevin Burnett
LB Stephen Tulloch
LB David Hawthorne
LB Pat Angerer
CB Devin McCourty
CB Terrell Thomas
S Sherrod Martin
S Donte Whitner
K Nate Kaeding
That's Not a Name You See on the All-Stars Every Week

11/29: Rambling On

November 29th 2010 16:49
Lovie Smith should be the coach of the year this year and not Mike McCarthy. He made several quizzical decisions in the Pack's 20-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. Tony Gonzalez clearly did not come up with a pass on fourth down, yet McCarthy did not challenge the play. Granted, it wasn't completely his fault so the argument is mainly about heralding the greatness of Lovie. No pun intended, but I love Lovie Smith. Before the year, I thought Jerry Angelo would be stupid to fire this guy. He has the respect of his players, and his personnel just isn't good.

I didn't buy into Chicago's play until their 31-26 victory over the Eagles. It has taken me a while- an 8-3 start in fact- for me to believe in da Bears. Thanks to Lovie, the O-Line is now working together as a unit and is playing OK football instead of being one of the worst lines in the league. Brian Urlacher and Charles Tillman are finally playing good football- in Urlacher's case he is healthy. The sudden rejuvenation of Tillman was very vital, because the secondary was the biggest weakness last year. Now, they are respectable.

Lance Briggs is back to being an elite football player thus enabling the Bears to once again have the most stifling run defense in the league. Julius Peppers has recently gone on a spree. The sacks weren't there at the beginning of the season, but that's because he does a great job of drawing out multiple offensive linemen. That's what the good D's like the Steelers do. If you want a simile, the Pepper's effect is like Randy Moss with the Pats.

Now that I weighed in on my Coach of the Year thoughts, it is time to talk MVP. So far- because it ain't over till it's over Yogi- it is Philip Rivers. This guy has dealt well with a myriad of receiver injuries. He has turned no-name receivers like Seyi Ajirotutu into decent players. That is the mark of elite QBs, and Rivers is certainly elite. I used to criticize him as a leader, but he matured a lot last year and it has shown in 2010.

This Chargers team is better than their record so get out of here Parcells. Their defense- Shaun Phillips and Eric Weddle especially- is top-notch and so is their pass attack thanks to the leading QB. Rivers could break Marino's passing yards in a season record. Will he have a better yardage season that 2008 Brees? That could happen, but it is unlikely he will break Marino's record. The point is, Rivers has been darn good this year, and he has my unequivocal vote thus far.
My Vote for 2010 MVP Thus Far

1. The reason for the Bengals' 2-9 record mostly lies within the incompetence of their quarterback. Although Carson Palmer is averaging over 250 yards per game and is on pace for over 4,000 total yards of passing, he has thrown about 39 passes per game. That's even more than Matt Ryan. The so called "run-powered offense" only hands it to Cedric Benson 19 times per game. Benson should be getting 25 carries. Note that stat rankings are based on position. This note gets important when we get into LBs and defensive statistics like picks, sacks, and tackles.

2. Palmer is also 26th in the league in completion percentage. He also ranks outside the top 25 in yards per attempt. Palmer is on pace for 27 TDs but also a whopping 22 picks. Palmer is third in the league in picks. It takes him 23 passes to throw a touchdown. Going into yards per game, he is 13th in that category. Carson Palmer has the second worst WAP. OK, consensus is that Palmer sucks. Let's look at other stats and stop beating the broken QB.

3. Benson is on pace for 1,146 rushing yards. Terrell Owens is having an amazing year. He is 3rd in the league in receiving yards, 5th in yards per game, 5th in first downs, 5th in receptions, 7th in TDs, the most targeted receiver in the league, and thanks to Palmer's 39 attempts per game he has the 5th highest target percentage between his teammates. T.O. is on pace for 1,329 receiving yards, 94 receptions, and 11 TDs.

4. Even in a down year, Ochocinco is expected to nab 78 catches mainly thanks to how much these guys pass. Dhani Jones is on pace for 134 tackles with his 92 tackles being the 5th best mark in the NFL. Jermaine Gresham is the 5th most targeted tight end in the league which is why his receptions are so bloated. Gresham is actually in the midst of a poor year. In fact, both WPA and EPA consider him the 3rd worst tight end in the league.

5. T.O. and Ochocinco have the second and third worst WPAs respectively. Benson has the 6th worst EPA mainly because he only average 3.6 yards per carry behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league as far as run blocking goes. Leon Hall is on pace for 6 picks, and his four picks are in the top 7 in the league. He isn't the secondary's problem. Neither is Jonathan Joseph who is also on pace for 6. Both of them still make the best cornerback tandem in the league. The safeties are the problem. They are extremely talented, it's just that all of them have the same weakness- coverage. That's why the Bengals' get repeatedly burned.

6. There is a misconception in the NFL that the best corners always take out the receivers. That's not true because 95 percent of the corners in the league don't shadow a receiver all day. Teams mostly play zones, so a receiver can get catches in a LBs or certain safeties' zone. Only Revis- in rare cases Nnamdi- shadow and take out receivers. Mike Nugent's field goal percentage is under 80 percent. Don't read into Kevin Huber's only 42.5 yards per punt which is a terrible mark. He is 5th in the league in punts inside the 20 and third in punts inside the 10
Is WPA Right?

11/27 MLB Rumors: Lee Received Offer?

November 27th 2010 14:48
The Yankees may have given Cliff Lee a six year 140 million dollar deal, however Lee is looking for a deal of seven years worth 161 million just like his friend CC Sabathia. They both pitched for the Indians in the same time period. The negotiations look eerily similar as CC's preliminary offer from the Yanks was six years 140 million dollars.

Trevor Hoffman will not receive arbitration as he wants to be a closer. The feeling is mutual, because Hoff was terrible with the Brew Crew last year. Due to Hoffman being a type B free agent, the Brewers will get a draft pick next year as compensation. Javier Vazquez is extremely close to singing with the Florida Marlins. The Marlins have long gone hard after him this offseason, especially after they got some extra cash from the Dan Uggla trade. The 34 year old Yankee disappointment has interest from the Nats, Cubs, and even Rockies.

Willie Randolph could join Buck Showalter on the Baltimore Orioles staff. Randolph was the bench coach with the Yankees when Showalter was the manager. Mariano River and the Yankees are also having a disagreement on his extension in a tumulus offseason for the Bombers. Re-signing the two icons was expected to be easy but neither side has quite yet settled their differences. Rivera wants two years and 18 million per year. The Yankees would give the monetary value, but they only want to give Mo one year.

Omar Minaya has several job offers, including one as assistant GM with the Arizona Diamondbacks. These guys really are trying to load up on failed GMs. However, the Mets still have the most detailed front office. The Diamondbacks also want to sign JJ Putz in order to bolster their bullpen.
Offered 6 Years and 140M?

1. LB Patrick Willis
2. RB Frank Gore
3. DE Justin Smith

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1. QB Tom Brady
2. RG Stephen Neal
3. LB Jerod Mayo

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1. LB DeMarcus Ware
2. C Andre Gurode
3. QB Tony Romo

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1. WR Roddy White
2. RB Michael Turner
3. LB Curtis Lofton

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1. SS LaRon Landry
2. LB Brian Orakpo
3. LB London Fletcher

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1. QB Drew Brees
2. CB Jabari Greer
3. RG Jahri Evans

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11/2010 Arizona Cardinals Player Ratings

November 20th 2010 16:19
This is another exclusive post from PSW. Various players receive roles and ratings. Enjoy!

QB Derek Anderson 64

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Ron Gardenhire is known as one of the premier managers in the league and re-enforced that statement with his AL Manager of the Year win. Now, he has a 2 year extension that was an obvious decision. The Yankees finally traded bust Juan Miranda. The 27 year old was traded for 19 year old Diamondbacks prospect Scott Allen. The upside of Allen makes it a better deal for New York, who were sick of Miranda's poor play anyway. Miranda is definitely never going to be major league material.

The Houston Astros got solid middle infielder Clint Barmes from Colorado. They traded pitcher Felipe Paulino who is average. This is a slightly better deal for the Stros. The Florida Marlins now have some good financial room thanks to the Dan Uggla traded. They are looking to sign either Javier Vazquez or Carl Pavano. Ted Lilly received a 3 year 33 million dollar deal with the Dodgers, so Pavano wants that kind of salary. Of course, he doesn't deserve that pay. The Cubs, Cards, Rockies and Nats are all interested in Javy as well

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2010 Week 11 Predictions

November 18th 2010 15:33
24 Bears 17 Dolphins MVP Julius Peppers

7 Raiders 20 Steelers MVP Rashard Mendenhall

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Dan Uggla Traded to the Braves

November 17th 2010 15:08
This is what I would call is stunning deal. I for sure thought that Uggla would re-sign with the Marlins. Talks were going well, and it seemed like everything was going smoothly. Instead, Dan Uggla- the best power hitter in Marlins history- will find himself on a different team in the NL East. He is now the starting second baseman of the Atlanta Braves.

The Braves dealt lefty Mike Dunn- who looks like a failed prospect- and average shortstop Omar Infante. This seems like a one year rental, but I do believe that the Marlins got the better part of the wishbone here. Uggla, even for what could be only a year, is much more talented than the poor Mike Dunn. Not even Omar Infante sweetens it enough

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2010 Week 10 All-Stars

November 16th 2010 19:51
QB Michael Vick
RB Jerome Harrison
RB Chris Johnson

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If you have been reading my work since I have came here, I have always made it clear that the Carolina Panthers have the best run game in NFL history. Their offensive line is incredible and their running backs are the only tandem in history to have both backs rush for over 1,100 yards. They also have a third stringer that could start for a team like the Redskins or Broncos.

Mike Goodson's 100 yard rushing performance that trumped his opposing running back, LeGarrette Blount, was not out of the blue. Blount was very good, as he was expected to be, but Goodson was the one with 100 yards. Before he was drafted last season in the fourth round, Goodson was rated as one of my top five most underrated draft prospects in 2009

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2010 Boston Red Sox Player Salary Facts

November 14th 2010 15:13
1. At 18.7 million, John Lackey is Boston's highest paid player.

2. Lackey, Josh Beckett, J.D. Drew, and David Ortiz all make over 10 million; while Paps and You make a little bit over nine

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2010 MLB Free Agency Part 2

November 13th 2010 14:30
Theo Epstein really wants to re-sign Adrian Beltre and Victor Martinez. I feel that since there are so many teams going for Beltre, he should go for V-Mart so he has a better chance at at least getting something. If the Sox don't get Martinez back, their quality at catcher will be really low. It will be a crapshoot. The Detroit Tigers are extremely interested in acquiring the star catcher, however Martinez is probably going to move to a first baseman or DH as the 31 year old's fielding is atrocious.

Victor Martinez would like to stay with Boston, but I have no idea whether he will or not because many teams have interest in him. The Red Sox are weary that re-signing him could hinder their progress on obtaining other free agents they want such as Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth. However, the catching position is their most gaping need when it is reminded that Martinez is technically not on their team and is a free agent. The Blue Jays, Rangers, and Mariners are the obvious list of teams that also want to acquire Martinez. If the Bosox do not get back V-Mart, they will most likely sign John Buck

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2010 MLB Free Agency Part 1

November 12th 2010 14:48
This is a basic guide to this year's free agency. It is packed with predictions, useful information, and notes. Enjoy Hot Stove Season!

Cliff Lee is going to go to the Yankees. At 32, he isn't quite the premier value some would expect. I really don't think the Rangers have enough money at this point. Re-signing him could jeopardize their financial future. Lee is not going to make as much as Sabathia did due to skill and age reasons. As great as Lee is, I don't quite think he is as good as CC Sabathia is. If Lee goes to New York, expect a higher ERA but likewise higher wins

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2010 Week 10 Predictions

November 11th 2010 14:41
20 Ravens 17 Falcons MVP Haloti Ngata *Big Game*

20 Bengals 17 Colts MVP Cedric Benson *Upset Special

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2010 Week 9 All-Stars

November 10th 2010 15:03
After much deliberation, I have finally released my All-Stars for the week. I also did not do a post on Tuesday because I was busy with life in general and have been grading several players with my colleague Darren Black.

QB Brett Favre

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11/8 Talking Sports: Torres Terrifies

November 8th 2010 16:11
I just want to talk about sports, plain and simple. So this format enables me to just ramble on about the topic that all you readers that read this blog want to hear about. Here at PSW, we are all about the fans and sports. So sit back, relax, read, and most of all; enjoy.

I was surprised just as much as you were. No, not the dominance of Peyton Hillis and especially not the dominance of Aaron Hernandez. I have always known that Hernandez was capable of big things. However, the Cleveland Browns obliterated the New England Patriots even when the Pats passed the pigskin perfectly. Tom Brady was hooking up with his receivers. Cleveland's QB didn't look too bad either. Rookie Colt McCoy has been what Mike Holmgren has envisioned him to be; smart and accurate

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2010 Week 9 Predictions

November 7th 2010 16:17
30 Chargers 24 Texans MVP Philip Rivers *Upset Special*

7 Cardinals 24 Vikings MVP Adrian Peterson

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5-2, 4-4, 3-5, and 2-6 are the records for the Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers, and Denver Broncos respectively. This is a division that was once thought to have one elite team- the Chargers- and a cast of poor teams such as the Raiders and Chiefs. However, San Diego sits at third while Kansas City and Oakland are at their respective slots at the top. Kansas City's recent rise shows that Scott Pioli is easily the best GM in the NFL and will go in the Hall of Fame.

The division proves that the NFL had not evolved into a league of passing. The two last teams lead the division in passing. The Chargers have one of the best signal callers in the league, while Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton has accumulated big numbers as Josh McDaniels constantly look to the passing game

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Sparky Anderson Passes Away

November 5th 2010 15:25
Sparky Anderson died at the age of 76 due to complications from dementia. This is truly saddening news as Sparky is a Hall of Famer and a top five manager historically. Anderson coached the Big Red Machine and is the sixth most winning-est coach of all-time. When he retired, he was third on that list.

"Sparky was, by far, the best manager I ever played for,” said Pete Rose. “He understood people better than anyone I ever met. His players loved him, he loved his players, and he loved the game of baseball. There isn’t another person in baseball like Sparky Anderson

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Moss and Merriman on the Move

November 4th 2010 15:17
Brad Childress- who I met and can tell you he is the worst NFL coach but a kind soul- said that the Randy Moss trade was a big mistake. The big mistake was actually how poorly Childress managed everything. His entire staff, teammates, and front office are all shocked at his stupidity. I wouldn't be surprised if he gets fired soon. He really should be axed, the players completely hate him.

Randy Moss was just taken off waivers by the Tennessee Titans. Their coach Jeff Fisher is one of the only coaches that can deal with the enigmatic star. 22 teams in front of the Titans on the waiver role passed up on him. I am not surprised. Even though the talent is there, very few coaches in the league know how to work with players like Moss. Belichick and Fisher are two of them

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11/2010 NFL Super 7's AFC East

November 3rd 2010 15:03
Buffalo Bills

1. Terrence McGee CB

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Week 8 All-Stars 2010

November 2nd 2010 16:49
QB Kyle Orton
QB Jason Campbell
RB Jamaal Charles

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Week 8 Monday Musings

November 1st 2010 17:29
1. It has taken some time, but I am finally a believer in Steve Johnson.

2. The Bills may stink, but Paul Posluszny and especially Kyle Williams deserve much more credit

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