Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Is it Fantasy Football Season Yet?

On Saturday (June 21), a clear 2 1/2 months before the start of the NFL season and probably about 2 months from my various fantasy football drafts, I purchased the first of what is sure to be 2-3 fantasy football magazines.

Yes, I am that psychotic!

And no matter how hard I study -- yes, I study for this crap -- and create my own draft rankings and debate internally who I'll select in the first round, I guarantee that I'll still finish AGAIN in 5th place in all of my fantasy leagues.

I know I have no shot and still I try. Having Adrian Peterson (a 7th round pick up last year), Frank Gore (an 11th round pick up two seasons ago) and Ryan Grant (a waiver wire pick up last season) in my keeper leagues helps some, I know the battle is futile.
While I'm sure that my voracious studying has helped select these late round gems in my keeper league, I know that I have absolutely no shot to win any of my leagues this year.

My luck just sucks that much. ...

Monday, June 23, 2008

My New Phone

I massacred my Blackberry World Edition a couple weeks ago and got the phone I've been wanting since it came out: The LG Voyager by Verizon. The bosses weren't too happy about it when they saw the bill, but it's a great phone that serves all my phone calling, emailing and game playing needs. ...even if it's really supposed to be used solely for boring conference calls and media pitching to godless reporters.

(And by "massacred my Blackberry World Edition", I mean that I dropped it on the floor for the 70th time and when the track ball stopped working I tried to take the phone apart because I thought I could fix it. Rrrright...)

Homer is Asleep at the Switch!

As I was driving my crappy Dodge Caliber rental car to public open house 5 of 9, I spotted a FRIGHTENING sight in scenic PA.

Amongst the beautiful farmland, wonderful trees and purple mountains majesty stood this monstrosity..And as soon as I saw it, my mouth became unhinged....

And if you don't know what it is, think Homer Simpson. ...

(The simple fact that I was able to take this picture with my phone, email it to my hotmail account and post it to my blog, boggles my mind. What's next? Teleportation?)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Random Thoughts from Past Week

Sorry for the sappy back-to-back blog posts. I'll try to keep it real with some (crude) thoughts that I had rattling around the old brain this past week....

  • I got a smile on my face today when I heard that Curt Schilling's career was potentially over because he's having season ending shoulder surgery. :-) Too bad that the surgery couldn't have been to staple his mouth shut...
  • On each street corner in Scranton there was "Welcome to Scranton" signs sponsored by local businesses. One was sponsored by Dunder Mifflin. Seriously. I tried to get a picture, but couldn't get one in time.
  • Out of my 4 open house events this week (still 5 to go, jesus), I only got yelled at only by two women. One was a crazy eyed environmentalist who didn't like the format of our open houses because it didn't give the public a chance to discuss -- or scream -- in an open forum. The second was a Twp. supervisor - WHO RAN A TOWNSHIP THAT WASN'T EVEN AFFECTED BY THE PROJECT. She also told me that she hated the format, said I was sneaky and told me twice to stop speaking. What a b'yatch.
  • To answer an anonymous person's post from my blog about sportswriting -- I'm guessing it was BBR -- no I did not hook up with any Maryland field hockey players during my time there. I also did not hook up with any women's soccer players when I covered them as a freshman, but I did get close to hooking up with a women's softball player when I was covering them as sophomore. And by close, I mean that I tried and she told me that she liked me as a friend. As I was leaving her room, I saw a rainbow above her closet. I'm just saying....
  • Does anyone now doubt Joba's potential as a starter after yesterday's line of: 5 2/3 innings, 1 run, 4 hits and 9 K's. I didn't think so.

  • And finally...When I returned last night from Scranton, I discovered that after a week without me, both my wife and the cat had started to mimic each other.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

No. 5 Maryland upsets No. 1 Old Dominion in field hockey

I'm totally in a bored, self loathing mood tonight.
As I mentioned in the past blog, I'm in the not so great City of Scranton this week for a number of public open house meetings (more on that in a later blog).
We're through 2 of the 9 scheduled (painful) open houses -- no one has screamed in my face yet, so that is good -- and I'm bored out of my mind with nothing to do in Scranton at night except crash in my hotel room and watch DVDs.
To help cure some of the boredom, I did a google search tonight on my name (as I know you've probably done before) and I came across a sports article that I wrote for the University of Maryland's Diamondback newspaper back on October 6, 1997.
To put it simply, this was the seminal article of my life. ...
It was my writing of this article that "convinced" me that maybe my dream of one day becoming a sportswriter wouldn't be for me and that I would instead choose a different path.
The article was "No. 5 Maryland upsets No. 1 Old Dominion in field hockey" about Missy Meharg's (pictured above) Women's Field Hockey team.
To make a long story short, as I was literally writing this article, I decided to quit sportswriting for a long list of reasons (the pay sucked, my editor was a dick -- he was a decendent of Ralph Waldo Emerson and never let anyone ever forget it -- and because of my personality; i.e. I always ended up becoming friends with the athletes only to have many of these friendships suffer because I sometimes needed to write negative stories that they didn't want to read.) And they ended up hating me when they read the article. And I don't like people hating me.
While I took the fork that lead to me becoming a spinmeister and part-time paperboy on my blog, I still haven't seen the piles of money that I envisioned back in the day . I was hoping by now that I would at least have a small pile of money to swim in (ala Scrooge McDuck).
Have you ever had those fork in the road moments in your life where you don't know if you made the right decision? Discuss....

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Heart Songs

I’m in a hotel in lovely Scranton for work – yes there’s not much to do here except make clich├ęd jokes about The Office – and just ran into my first interesting experience of the trip.

As I was finishing up some work at 10:45 p.m. – my boss is a slave driver – there was a knock at the door. When I went to open it, I was greeted by the some random drunk dude.

Before I had the chance to ask him what he needed – besides some coffee – he slurred something about how he knocked on the wrong door. His face was beet red. He reeked of cheap whisky. And he nearly fell over. In short, he was pathetic.

Looking at that guy, I wonder why I ever drank. … Did I really look that way when I was trashed? If I did, I should have quit drinking a long time ago.

(The title of this blog post is also the name of a new Weezer song. I thought it was appropriate for this introspective moment.)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The True Fantasy Value of Jeremy Shockey

Some of you may know that I responded to an advertisement on Craiglist from recently to be a writer for their NFL/fantasy site. An editor there initially emailed me back and said that if I submitted a sample article they would consider bringing me on as a regular contributor. Well, I wrote that sample article (the one you'll read below) and they got back to me the other day to say they had rejected my submission. Bastards.
The editor told me not to take it as a slight, but that they receive 100s of article submissions and don't hire too many writers for one reason or another. Anyway, I figured since the article won't see the light of the day on a crappy website like RealFootball 365, I should at least make it available to the readers of the super-awesome Deliveries from the Paperboy website.

So here it is. I give to you the True Fantasy Value of Jeremy Shockey. Enjoy.

The True Fantasy Value of Jeremy Shockey

The potential of New York Giants tight end Jeremy Shockey might be alluring, but don’t be tempted to rank him among the current top tight ends in the game. The oft-injured Shockey comes with much more risk than reward and can burn fantasy owners who reach for him too early in league drafts.
While Shockey has played in four Pro Bowls during his 6-year career, he’s visited the trainer’s room more often than he’s been on the list of weekly Fantasy scoring leaders. This past season, Shockey was placed on the injured reserve after he hurt his ankle and broke his left fibula – his most serious injury to date – during a Week 15 matchup against the Washington Redskins.

During Shockey’s time on the injured reserve, the Giants went 5-1 and won Super Bowl XLII. While many members of the news media are quick to draw a correlation between Shockey’s absence and the Giants historic run, Giants coaches have dismissed this notion and say that Shockey will be a big part of the team’s offense during the upcoming NFL season.

That remains to be seen, though.

Since breaking out in his rookie season under former Giants offensive coordinator Sean Payton, Shockey has seen his statistics dwindle. In last season’s offensive scheme, under offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride, Shockey was asked to block on many downs for quarterback Eli Manning. When he did go out for a pass, Shockey was Manning’s 3rd or 4th option after Plaxico Burress, Amani Toomer and Steve Smith.

While Shockey has largely stayed out of the public eye since his season-ending injury, it has been rumored that he requested a trade from the team this offseason. Those rumors didn’t come to fruition and Shockey remains with the Giants. Now, his recovery from surgery to repair his broken fibula, his displeasure with the Giants offense and his diminishing production loom large for the tight end this upcoming season.

So, what’s Jeremy Shockey’s true fantasy value?

In his 6-year Giant career, Shockey has averaged 61 catches for 704 yards and 4 ½ touchdowns a season. While good numbers for an average tight end, Shockey’s statistics are quite deceiving.

Take 2007 for instance.

Last year, Shockey caught 57 balls for 619 yards and 3 TDs. If you take out his Week 10 performance (12 for 129 yards) against the Dallas Cowboys, Shockey averaged a mere three catches for 35 yards in his 14 other appearances; certainly not production that puts him among the top tight ends in the league.

Shockey’s true fantasy value lies with other Tier 2 tight ends like Tony Gonzalez, Chris Cooley and Jason Witten. I’d draft Shockey in the 7th or 8th round of your league’s draft and strongly consider handicapping him up with emerging Giants tight end Kevin Boss – for the games that Shockey inevitably sits out with an injury.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

SUPER Balls!

When you have someone by the balls you can pretty much do whatever you want to them. I'll end it at there... but that's exactly what Michael Strahan and Plaxico Burress did - in different fashions - to the Giants this week.
You really can't blame Strahan for retiring from the NFL yesterday as he did -insert cliche here- what every athlete wants to do and go out on top. He established himself as a Hall of Fame player in his 15 year career, sat out this past season's pre-season and then performed great throughout the regular and post season. He was the mental and vocal leader of the team in the postseason and I truly believe he's a big reason that the team won the Super Bowl.

Burress has been another big contributor to the Giants since he joined the team 3 years ago. This season, despite constant injuries, he was one of the top WRs in the league. And after catching the game-winning touchdown in Super Bowl XLII, Burress has the Giants's foot...balls in his hand and he's squeezing hard.
At today's mandatory team mini-camp, Burress is there, but he's told the team that he's not practicing - insert another cliche here - because he isn't happy with his contract. I can understand why he's doing it, but I sure wish that he wasn't being a distraction.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Yankees Win...Joba Pitches Well...Paperboy Turns Into a Baked Potato

Did you hear? They installed a sauna in the upperdeck in Yankee Stadium.

Me, the wife, Smelmooo and Tangent Woman sat in the Yankee Stadium sauna yesterday where we drank 3 bottles of water a piece and sucked down a lemon ice in 3 seconds flat. Despite a temp that hovered between 95 degrees and hell yesterday, we braved the heat to attend Joba Chamberlain's 2nd MLB Start. And it was an awesome game.

Joba pitched 4 1/3 innings and put in a respectable effort striking out 5 and hitting 100 mph on the speed gun numerous times. Giambi hit a breaking ball into the bleachers - his 3rd home run in 4 games. Bobby Abreu hit an upperdeck blast in the first inning. And Alex Rodriguez hit a rocket off the left field run to drive in two runs for the Yankees.

It was a fun game despite the heat.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Entertain Me.....

Into the Wild - This was another movie that I didn't know a lot about going into it. As you may know, I usually like movies a hell of a lot more when I don't know anything about them. All I knew about this movie was that Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder did the songs and it was based on a true story. Other than that, I knew nothing about the story.

After watching all 2 hours and 45 minutes, I thought it was simply a phenomenal movie..It was a tad long in parts, but I was engrossed throughout and highly recommend it.

The Orphanage - Smelmooo recommended The Orphanage -- or El Orfanato for those with the blog SAP button turned on --to me and even though I typically don't like subtitled movies, I thought this was a great movie.

It was a scary, haunted movie from start to finish. The movie was about a woman who buys the orphanage she used to live in and moves in with her husband and adopted son. Very believable, huh?
Perhaps the fact that all of the actors spoke spanish made this flick a little more scary than it would be if they all spoke English. I definitely recommend this movie.

Fear Itself (NBC) - I'd seen some commercials on this show and was willing to give it a shot because it looked like old school Tales from the Crypt - a fav of mine - and I'm a sucker for watching a new show from the beginning to see if I get hooked.

This show premiered last night and was mediocre from start to finish. I think it's supposed to be a short story/serial type of show where every episode tells a different story. Last night's show was a clinche filled romp fest with a broken down car, seductive women, and a vampire-like creature living off humans. I didn't see the ending credits because I stopped watching it early, but it had so many cliches in it, I wonder if the writer credited all of the people he stole plot lines from.
I'll give it another shot next week because of its serial nature of it - and to prevent pissing off the guy below - but this show may soon fall off my TV watching schedule.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Giambi Knocks Upperdeck Blast to Win it for Yanks

Today was by far the biggest win of the season for the Yankees.
Down 7-2 in the fifth inning, the Yankees overcame their largest deficit of the season when pinch hitter Jason Giambi hit a long 2-run walkoff home run 10 rows into the right field upper deck. It was a gigantic hit both mentally and physically for the team. ...and perhaps the longest home run that I've seen hit in the Stadium.
Let's hope it shakes the cobwebs that the 30-30 Yankees have experienced thus far this season. It just might be the jolt that the team needs.