Futile Fantasy Football is BACK! Week 1!

FUTILE FANTASY IS BACK!! GET IN THE GAME!! Here are the rules and the player pools you can select from:

Here are the rules again for a quick reminder: remember, you are trying to pick THE WORST team points wise, so cheer for futility.

Who ever has THE LOWEST score wins. So really, we are playing golf. So pick a four pack of bums and get in the game! Here are the rules for a quick refresher.

-Each team will be comprised of one QB, RB, WR and TE. The game is meant to be simple. Pick one of each.

-Each player picked for each position must be a STARTER and must be PLAYING that week. (For instance, you may not pick Matt Cassel because he is not starting (yet), but you may pick Russel Wilson.)

-Your RB slot has to be filled with the first string (and starting) RB from a team. You may not use full backs or H backs.

-Scoring is standard scoring. All touchdowns count as 6 points (including passing TD’s). 25 throwing yards equals 1 point. 10 yards rushing and receiving equals 1 point. -2 for fumbles and INT’s.

-No decimal point scoring.

-No Monday night players. The reason for this is we will be able to get some instant gratification Sunday night. I will post the winners then.

SELECT ONE PLAYER FROM EACH POSITION BELOW!

QB – Jay Cutler, Josh Freeman, Andy Dalton, Michael Vick, Andrew Luck, Matt Schaub, Russel Wilson or Eli Manning.

RB – Adrian Peterson, Jamaal Charles, Demarco Murray, Daren McFadden, Benjarvis Green-Ellis, Reggie Bush, CJ  Spiller, Stephen Jackson, Doug Martin, Trent Richardson.

WR – Andre Johnson, Lance Moore, Calvin Johnson, Desean Jackson, Dwayne Bowe, Mike Wallace, Victor Cruz, AJ Green, Pierre Garcon, Reggie Wayne, James Jones, Steve Smith (Carolina) or Brandon Marshall

TE – Kyle Rudolph, Jermichael Finley, Jason Wittin, Owen Daniels, Brent Celek, or Jared Cook.

 

Select one from each pool and leave your team in the comments below! Good luck.

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In Honor of James Gandolfini: The Toughest Guys In Sports

by Tommy Gimler of The Daily Upper Decker

I’m not Italian, I’m not in the mob, and I’m not a hard ass. But when James Gandolfini died from an apparent heart attack in Italy on Wednesday, I feel like a part of me died as well.

For six seasons Gandolfini played Tony Soprano, perhaps the toughest guy to ever grace the small screen. Yet what made him just as memorable was how he had to deal with problems outside of the family business that most of us can relate to. You know, like an uncle with dementia, fantasies about your therapist, and a wife who won’t let you bet on the fucking Jets.

So, to honor Gandolfini, The DUD has come up with this short list of the closest things the sports world has to Tony Soprano:

James Harrison – LB, Cincinnati Bengals

How tough is James Harrison? After Roger Goodell fined him over $200,000 in 2010 and 2011 for numerous vicious hits that knocked out a few receivers and quarterbacks, he informed the entire league that he was going to be tackling low from there on out. But even that couldn’t keep him from injuring opposing players, as the destroyed Eric Decker’s knee in a playoff loss to Jesus Christ and the Denver Broncos…

Dustin Pedroia – 2B, Boston Red Sox

After breaking his foot in 2010, Dustin Pedroia refused to just sit and let it heal. According to his Wikipedia page, he was so concerned about his fielding skills diminishing, that he would practice taking ground balls from his knees. Last year, he told turd manager Bobby Valentine through the media to go fuck himself. This season, Pedroia completely tore his UCL ligament in his thumb on Opening Day, yet he has played in every game except one. Even with the injury, Pedroia is hitting .312 with an OPB of .396, 4 home runs, 40 RBI, 46 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases…

Kobe Bryant – SG, Los Angeles Lakers

According to a 2011-12 survey of NBA general managers, just over 32% of them said the toughest player in the NBA was Kobe Bryant. We wouldn’t know because we don’t watch fixed sports. But when the next highest player on the list was Rajon Rondo at just 10.7%, we’ll take their word for it. All we know is that it sure as shit isn’t Andrew Bogut…

Zdeno Chara – D, Boston Bruins

Look at the size of this fucking guy. The Hockey News and Yahoo! Sports named Zdeno Chara the toughest player in the NHL last month even though at that time he had only been in 54 fights in 1,055 career games, including one in which he broke an opposing player’s jaw. But when you’re 6-foot-9 and 255 pounds, you don’t have to fight to get you’re point across. Especially when every player in the league has seen video of you do this:

RIP, James…

 

Check out more sports crudeness from The Daily Upper Decker here!

Chris Kluwe Expected to be Cut by Minnesota Vikings!

We have covered a lot of what Chris Kluwe has done on this site. You can find some of his funny articles here and here and here. He also happens to play for the Vikings, who happen to be this writers favorite team. But news has come out that the Vikings are ready to cut ties with the punter. The Vikings are citing that Kluwe’s age, salary and Jeff Locke’s (Vikings drafted a new punter in this years draft) talent all are factors in Kluwe’s release.

Of course, some people are wondering if that Kluwe’s off field interests and antics are the real reason the Vikings are letting him go. I personally hope that it is not. Kluwe is quick to point out that he has been an above average punter in this league for years now. But the Vikings seem to want to have a “quiet” punter. I think this is unfortunate in a lot of ways. One, it just sort of stereotypes the NFL even more as the “not fun league” and also makes it hard for players in this league to share opinions and ideas and even just enjoy their life. The NFL is not and should never be considered equals to the military or anything like that. It is a game, a sport. I suppose Kluwe has some great lines about this when he says that he has no regrets being who he is;

“I think the sacrifice would be worth it,” Kluwe told Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune. “Now, I would hope that I would get the chance to play football again, because I think I can still play. But if it ends up being something that costs me that position, I think making people aware of an issue that is causing children to commit suicide is more important than kicking a leather ball.”

Kluwe particularly has been vocal in his support for same sex-marriage rights. He is coming out with a book this summer and believes it’s silly that he’s been admonished publicly, sometimes by coaches, for having other interests.

“When I’m at the facility, I’m concentrating 100 percent on my job because that’s what I’m being paid to do,” Kluwe said. “But when I’m away from the facility, I’m no longer at my job. I get to live my life. This idea that you have to spend 24 hours a day thinking about your job frankly is unhealthy. It’s insane.”

I agree 100%. I do not think the Vikings “botched” this whole situation…I am saying they missed an opportunity to become something more than just an NFL football team. They could have stood by and supported one of their own and that persons issues. Instead, they did what every NFL team does…cut the player and move on. Is it better for football operations? Maybe. Is it right? I suppose that is up to you.

I think Kluwe will end up punting some place else rather quickly. Teams hire felons who kill people and dogs and get DUI’s and beat women…I am sure a team can handle someone who likes playing World of Warcraft…

 

Star Wars Connections With the NFL!

Happy May 4th! Most people are now seeing this as a Star Wars day because you can say “May the Fourth be with you!” and it sounds like you are saying a line from Star Wars. That’s all well and good, but it also leads to pretty cool comparisons across different genres for my favorite saga. For instance, this one put on by NFL.com! Check it out, it compares NFL players to Star Wars characters!

Find the link HERE!

5 Games That Shaped The 2012 NFL Season!

Though I do not personally agree with ALL of these games on this list, some of them are absolutely spot on. Take a good look back at 5 games that shaped our NFL season!

A single game is just a drop in the bucket in the NFL, what with 21 weeks for teams to decide their fate and 267 contests to satisfy the football palate.

A drop in the bucket … that’s appropriate, as any drop creates its own ripple. Take your pick of the thousands of games that have been played over the NFL’s 93 seasons; no matter the outcome, that game had its own effect on the season and — in some cases — on history.

The New York Giants never would have won Super Bowl XLVI if Dallas Cowboys receiver Miles Austin hadn’t lost a ball in the lights in Week 14. Tennessee Titans receiver Kevin Dyson wouldn’t have ended up a yard short in Super Bowl XXXIV if Music City had gone Miracle-less in that 1999 wild-card game. Joe Montana-to-John Taylor never would have happened inSuper Bowl XXIII if Steve Young hadn’t produced the greatest scramble ever versus the Minnesota Vikings at midseason.

And so goes the NFL’s ripple effect.

Two years ago, I wrote a piece about the games that shaped the 2010 season. As I started to get updates from the 2013NFL Scouting Combine, hearing how certain collegians will make their mark on the league next season, I was reminded of that piece and began thinking about five games that forged the 2012 campaign.

Here, in chronological order, is my list.

Seattle Seahawks 14, Green Bay Packers 12

Seahawks fans wanted everyone to quit their crying. Packers fans (as well as pretty much every other NFL fan) wanted to know the true answer to that eternal question: WTFM.D. Jennings would like a second interception added to his football card. What the heck happened?

We know Russell Wilson‘s desperation heave to win this Week 3 matchup was, at a bare minimum, controversial. And of course, the sour aftertaste of a game seemingly being handed to the Seahawks (although it’s important to remember that some calls went against them, too) was not the only aftertaste.

Seattle emerged as a contender, partially because of a dominant defensive display that produced eight sacks in the first half. The win provided just enough of a cushion for the Seahawks to stay a step ahead of the Chicago BearsNew York Giants and Minnesota Vikings in the NFC wild-card race. Green Bay, meanwhile, was greatly affected in terms of their hunt for home-field advantage.

More importantly, with several questionable calls delivered by replacement refs, no game better facilitated the recognition that the NFL’s product is only as good as the officiating. Essentially, the game means nothing if it’s not fairly played … from Seattle to New York to Miami.

Indianapolis Colts 30, Green Bay Packers 27

Here is yet another close Packers loss that greatly affected the 2012 season.

Green Bay fell to 2-3 after losing to an emotionally charged Colts club in Week 5, and the Packers, who went 15-1 in 2011, ultimately “stumbled” to an 11-5 finish. A win in Indy would have at least allowed the Pack to skip the wild-card round and host their divisional playoff matchup at frigid Lambeau Field. How would a Packers49ers NFC Championship Game have gone down? Would San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick have run for 181 yards in Green Bay, as he did on his home turf? For that matter, would the Niners, who had lost in Minnesota once already, have even beaten the Vikings in the wild-card round?

All those musings about what could’ve been are small marbles compared to the story of the pesky Colts. The emotional underbelly of this past season was the little-engine-that-could in Indianapolis. A team with a rookie quarterback, a fill-in head coach and a roster full of new faces went 11-5, giving real-life meaning to the NFL’s age-old mission statement of “any given Sunday.”

Then there’s Chuckstrong. The week before this game, Colts coach Chuck Pagano announced he was fighting leukemia. Like most of America, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing as I watched this one play out from my living room. Aaron Rodgers‘ pocket was collapsing. The folks in the Lucas Oil crowd, refusing to buy into the notion that their Colts were a 2-14 team, were going nutso. And no one on planet Earth — Deion Sanders included — could have stopped Reggie Wayneon that day. Mr. Wayne finished with 212 yards.

The Colts entered this contest at 1-2. They won 10 of their next 13, finishing 11-5 and making the playoffs. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians won the Coach of the Year Award after serving on an interim basis in Pagano’s stead. Most importantly, Pagano won his battle, and his players won theirs … for him.

St. Louis Rams 24, San Francisco 49ers 24

There are bad ties (Herb Tarlek, anyone?). There are good ties. Consider this game’s inclusion on this list to be a vote for the latter.

What a crazy ballgame. Jeff Fisher‘s Rams gave the eventual NFC champions all they could handle — twice — in 2012. After the first meeting, a 24-24 Week 10 slugfest, dipped into overtime waters, Danny Amendola seemingly motored his way into scoring position for the underdogs from St. Louis, who were showing they weren’t the “same old” Rams, as former 49er great Tim McDonald once labeled the franchise.

Alas, Amendola’s 80-yard reception on the first play of the extra period was brought back by an illegal-formation penalty. On the next possession, 49ers kicker David Akers missed a 41-yard field-goal try, and neither team wound up taking home the prize. And we were given our first tie since Donovan McNabb learned something new.

This game ultimately resulted in an 11-4-1 record for the 49ers — keeping them a half-game ahead of the 11-5 Packers.Colin Kaepernick then got a chance to wow the home crowd in the playoffs with seemingly five jillion yards on quarterback keepers.

Ahh, now there’s the real tidal wave that resulted from this particular drop in the bucket: the fact that Kaepernick even hadthat memorable playoff game, or that he led the 49ers to their sixth Super Bowl appearance. None of that would have happened if Alex Smith hadn’t gotten hurt in this Week 10 affair.

Washington Redskins 31, Baltimore Ravens 28

A few weeks after Smith went down, so did the most exciting rookie of 2012: Robert Griffin III. What if he hadn’t taken a shot to the knee from the Ravens‘ Haloti Ngata at FedEx Field in Week 14?

Well, for starters, the Seahawks-Redskins playoff game — which wasn’t bad anyway — might have been nothing short of awesome, perhaps the sexiest playoff game of the postseason, with the eventual Offensive Rookie of the Year — playing at full strength this time — facing off against the NFC’s other premium rookie quarterback in Russell Wilson.

Could Seattle have muzzled Washington’s Pistol offense led by a quarterback who could expose any defense? How would the Falcons have fared against RG3 in the next round? The sexiest possibility, of course, would have been Kaepernick and RG3 going head-to-head for the NFC title. Redskins-Niners … it would have felt like 1983 again.

RavensRedskins also gets a vote here because of the way its tentacles have reached into 2013. Redskins coach Mike Shanahan will be answering questions about playing an injured RG3 in that game for some time. Additionally, the star quarterback’s return date is up in the air — as is the Redskins‘ willingness to continue running an offense that leaves him far more open to injury than most franchise players.

Baltimore Ravens 38, Denver Broncos 35

Surely, you had to be expecting this entry. Without the outcome of this divisional-round playoff match, the story of the 2012 season would have been slightly different. By just a hair.

Perhaps the most captivating game of the season, the Ravens‘ upset shocked us all. Denver had won 11 games in a row and appeared to be locked into a collision course with the New England Patriots to decide the AFC title. However, John Fox‘s conservative strategy near the end of regulation in this one, along with Broncos defender Rahim Moore‘s apparent lazy-brained approach to the longball and some clutch Joe Flacco play, ruled the day.

Consider the butterfly effect of the postseason’s best contest. If the Broncos had won…

… Baltimore wouldn’t have won Super Bowl XLVII, obviously.

… Bill Belichick could’ve become the first head coach in league history to take one franchise to six Super Bowls (assuming the Pats had been able to beat the Broncos, which they had already done earlier in the year).

… Peyton Manning would have had another crack at the Super Bowl, and we would have had a third look at Manning and Brady fighting for all the AFC marbles.

… all things Flacco could have changed. That includes his ongoing contract negotiations with the Ravens, as well as his future with the organization.

… Jacoby Jones wouldn’t be doing Dancing with the StarsNick Mangold would. Just kidding.

… The three hours of Ray Lewis coverage we were forced to digest would have been given back to us, and presumably spent on the deification of Manning.

But alas, the Ravens won, and they DESERVED it. That’s football. Denver didn’t do what it needed to do, whether it came to the prevent defense or Manning preventing bad judgment from leading him to throw the ball across his body, late and over the middle. Those factors — as well as the clutch play of Flacco and the rest of the Ravens — set up Justin Tucker’s winning field goal in Denver, as well as Baltimore’s subsequent Super Bowl run.

Again, that’s football. Nonetheless, there’s no debating that this game, more than any other, wrote the epitaph for the 2012 season.

Follow Elliot Harrison on Twitter @Harrison_NFL.

Fantasy Football Art!

This is an amazing set of pictures that shows mascots actually beating up on each other. You can find the full album here: http://imgur.com/a/9VdIW Enjoy the pictures!

 

What was your favorite?! Leave it in the comments below!