Arena Football League Quickplay Week 15
This week appears to be the N*Sync Week on Quickplay. No, we're not going all boy band on you but it is all about the "Bye, Bye, Bye." For the first time in several weeks we have teams on bye to contend with and they are primarily powerhouse teams.
Looking back at last week, the points were few and far between as one player broke the 200-point mark. Plenty of teams had Adrian McPherson left in their line up thinking he would be back in action after suffering a lower body injury against New Orleans. He didn't and Randy Hippeard took all the snaps and the points away from those players.
The only team north of 200 was Legnbaz with a 206-point effort to take Week 14 honors. They used Carson Coffman of the Rush as one of their quarterbacks with Prechae Rodriguez and Donovan Morgan as their two Southern Division players. It worked well and they won the week.
Uncle Si was able to stop calling ducks and pulled 198 points out of their beard for the second spot. The Voice Says that he was tied with arenabowlbound for third with 194 points. The Soulkeeper's score of 192 got them fifth place.
Rounding out the top 10 were the Short Bus Kids (186), the Swamp Dawgs (180), the Excelsior Pilots (166), the South Phoenix Bombers at 165 while the Nebraska Predators and Unemployed Punters tied for 10th with 161.
For the season, the top three teams have all crossed the 3,000 point threshold. Arenabowlbound tops the list at 3,033 with the South Phoenix Bombers right behind at 3,022. Skillet has also put up 3K on the board and stands 3rd at 3,003.
Right behind them are six teams separated by 32 points so it's far from over. The Unemployed Punters (2,971), Short Bus Kids (2,955), Dundalk Golden Owls (2,953), Washington Commandos (2,950), Chillin' N Winnin' (2,947) and Nebraska Predators (2,939) are all right there chasing down the top three. RochRush stands 10th with 2901 points.
With Arizona, Spokane, Tampa Bay and Chicago all on bye where will you find the points this week? The Western Division only has Utah and San Jose as options while the Central Divison is limited to San Antonio and Iowa.
This week's games are: Orlando at Jacksonville, New Orleans at Pittsburgh, Philadelphia at Cleveland, San Antonio at Iowa and San Jose at Utah. So those teams from limited divisions are going to be playing each other and if either of those games is a low-scoring clunker, expect point totals to be low all the way around.
This looks to be the most difficult week for the rest of the season, so let's go through and figure this one out.
For the Eastern Division, we have to go with Derrick Ross and Anthony Jones. The Soul have the third-best offense and the third-best defense. They take on a Cleveland squad that gets beaten by an average of 13 points a night. The Soul should roll so these look like the most confident plays of the week. With a win and a Pittsburgh loss, the Soul will wrap up their division--a month early. They could also tie Jacksonville for the to spot in the American Conference so there is plenty for the Soul to play for.
Over in the Western Division, the pickings are slim. Our choices are San Jose (9-4) and Utah (5-8). Utah has been a real letdown this season. Tommy Grady isn't playing. The team is sitting last in the Western Division and a loss will eliminate
them from postseason contention. And there was that issue earlier this week about financial questions with their homefield. That got resolved but the Blaze are something I'd want no part of when it comes to fantasy this week.
So for San Jose we're going to pick two players who both have been hot as of late. They are QB Russ Michna and WR Jason Willis. Michna carved up Arizona for 313 yards and nine touchdowns last week as the Sabercats whipped the Rattlers by 30 points. Willis leads the team with 92 catches for 1138 yards and 28 touchdowns this season.
It's hard to beat numbers like that when the options are slim.
In the Southern Division, one player comes to mind easily and that's New Orleans wide out Donovan Morgan. Morgan has silently put up solid numbers of 74 catches for 1,137 yards and 24 touchdowns. Morgan looks like a solid choice on a thin week. His quarterback situation looks shaky as Kurt Rocco was ineffective last week and Chris Dixon put up 47 points in relief. It's hard to say right now which quarterback will go under center for the VooDoo against lowly Pittsburgh. I'd like to run with whomever New Orleans puts at quarterback as well but we don't know who it is.
Jacksonville might have a fantasy option for this week in the same division as they take on Orlando who has the 12th best defense in the 14-team league. But who do you take from that team? It's also Redneck Night out there. It has nothing to do with fantasy football but this is already going to be a weird week anyways.
Jeron Harvey looks like the best option with 120 catches and 1304 yards with 30 touchdowns so if you want to go WR-WR in the Southern Division you have that option. I'm not entirely sold on Sharks' quarterback Kyle Rowley as a fantasy
option. Through two games he has eight touchdowns and five interceptions. While his 245 yards per game are nice, he doesn't bring enough to the table.
The Central Division is limited to Iowa and San Antonio so we're going to roll with both starters of those teams in JJ Raterink of Iowa and Rohan Davey of the Talons. Raterink threw for 222 yards and 7 scores the last time those two teams met. Davey has jump-started a San Antonio offense that has scored at least 50 points in each of its last two games. Both look to be solid picks since we're going deep on the depth charts this week.
This all looks quite promising but we still need a kicker. Without one, the lineup won't be legal and revert back to last week's roster. Which will have a lot of guys on bye and create a big pile of zeroes on your score. So we're going to have to cut a wide receiver loose and put a kicker in. In this case, we're going with Nich Pertuit of San Jose and cutting loose Willis. Michna has weeks where he favors Willis and other weeks where goes more to Huey Whitaker.
This is where the swap makes the most sense for this week.
It's time to find out if my team will be N*Sync with a big point total or will it just plain sink.
Unemployed Punters Lineup--Week 15
1 Anthony Keith Jones WR PHI
2 Derrick Ross FB PHI
1 JJ Raterink QB IOW
2 Rohan Davey QB SA
1 Jeron Harvey WR JAX
2 Donovan Morgan WR NO
1 Russ Michna QB SJ
2 Nich Pertuit K SJ