Monday, January 26, 2009

BrunoBoys.Net 2009 Fantasy Football Mock Draft - Rd. 2

BrunoBoys.Net 2009 Fantasy Football Mock Draft - Rd. 2
A Super Early 10 Round Mock Draft for Certified Fantasy Football Maniacs Only
January 26, 2009  JunkyardJake.Com

What better time to fire up a 2009 fantasy football mock draft than right before this year's Super Bowl? The writers over at BrunoBoys.Net (which is coincidently one of the coolest fantasy football blogs around, so please check it out) have already gotten the urge to begin speculating on the 2009 season. Here is round two with commentary from the drafting team, and our opinion on each of the picks.

2.01 -Bruno Boys Larry - Larry Fitzgerald - This was actually a very tough pick as there are still some very good running backs available. For many years my rule of thumb was to go RB with my first two picks and it was hard to pass on Frank Gore, Clinton Portis and Brandon Jacobs among others. But in this league we will be starting 3 wide receivers and I felt compelled to get a top flight WR at this point. There will likely be a run on the WR position between now and when I pick again in 20 picks and I don't want to be left without a WR1. This is a mistake I made in one league last year when I had the number 10 pick and the WR postion haunted me all season. Larry Fitzgerald has emerged as the top WR in football in my mind. He scored 210 fantasy points last season on 96 receptions for 1,431 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was very consistent all season scoring in double figures 12 times. There is no reason to believe that Fitz will have a drop off in 2009, although this pick is based on Kurt Warner returning as the Cardinals starting QB in 2009 and I have a hard time believing he won't. With the added depth at RB in this years draft, I feel very comfortable making this pick.

Larry Fitzgerald has certainly staked his claim to the designation as top fantasy receiver for 2009, so the late 1st, early 2nd round looks like the correct place to take him this year. While it is a bit risky to forgo a solid #2 RB in the 2nd round, Fitzgerald averaged 89 yards per game, with a league-leading 12 TDs (tied w/ Calvin Johnson) among wide receivers. Even if the Cardinals are forced to go with Matt Leinart in 2009, Fitzgerald should remain one of the top receivers in the league, especially if Anquan Boldin signs elsewhere.

2.02 -Bruno Boys Cavigs - Frank Gore - With pass first offensive coordinator Mike Martz running the show in San Francisco, Gore had somewhat of a roller coaster season but things should change in 2009. Martz was given the pink slip and new head coach Mike Singletary is committed to playing smash-mouth football that features a heavy dosage of Gore. His 283 touches and 1,409 total yards was his lowest output since his rookie season, but with him in line to get over 300 carries this year, we expect his totals to be comparable to 2006 when he had 2,180 total yards. Bottom Line, if you can snag him in the second round (because of a sub-par 2008 showing) consider yourself lucky.

Gore ran for a respectable 1,036 yards in 2008, in fact, this was not much of a drop-off from 2007, when he ran for 1,102. Certainly Martz is a bit of a nutball, and didn’t do a very good job with the Niners offense, but he was only part of the problem last season. More touches under Singletary seem likely for Gore, but let’s also hope that San Francisco can create more of a passing game in 2009 to help open things up in the running game.

2.03 -Fighting Chance Fantasy - Marion Barber - Really just wanted the opportunity to write Marion the Barbarian. Barber runs like he is mad at the world and refuses to ever take the easy way out of bounds and you have to admire him for that. He also has always had a nose for the endzone. Although he has some company in the backfield in what will be second year man Felix Jones, Barber is still the main man in Dallas, and isn't a bad pass receiver as well. Fantasy football is won and lost with TDs, and you can count on 10+ out of Barber.

Marion Barber dropped off significantly down the stretch in 2008, but this was likely the result of his toe injury. It might also be noted that Dallas and Barber had the misfortune of facing the absolute most run defenses in the league over the final 4 weeks of the season - Pittsburgh, NY Giants, Baltimore and Philadelphia. When healthy, Barber should be the main running threat for Dallas, with Felix Jones mixed in for about 5-10 carries per game, Assuming the Cowboys can shake off their late season 2008 collapse and are granted a slightly more favorable schedule, Barber is certainly worth the risk in the 2nd round.

2.04 -Bruno Boys Cory - Marshawn Lynch - I struggled with this pick between Marshawn Lynch, Brandon Jacobs and Chris Johnson. Ultimately, I felt too many points would be poached from Jacobs and Johnson, and injuries to Jacobs also scared me off. Lynch is the clear-cut No. 1 back in Buffalo and though the offense struggled at times this year I see the Bills getting better. Lynch has the ability to go for 1,500 yards and 15 total touchdowns and that's the kind of production I like out of a second round pick.

Marshawn Lynch is probably a safer pick in comparison to Jacobs and Chris Johnson because of his relative durability and consistent carries, and he is a terrific choice in the 2nd round. While the 3rd year back certainly has the talent to improve on the 1,047 rush yards and 8 TDs, his chances of doing this will be contingent on the Buffalo Bills ability to create a more potent offense in 2009. While Lynch pretty much accomplished the same rushing production that he did in 2007, one area that he did improve was in terms of receptions, where he boosted his total from 18 to 47.

2.05 -Bruno Boys Ziza - Clinton Portis - Having grabbed Steven Jackson with my first pick I am in need of a RB that isn't much of an injury concern that can also rack up the points. Happily I noticed that one of my initial possible picks were still on the board in Clinton Portis. He has played 16 games in three of the last four years and is a yardage stud. He also is good for near double digit TD's on a yearly basis. If it weren't for his bickering and dissatisfaction with the coaching staff, Portis most likely would have gone higher. His slide has locked me in to two RB's, Jackson and Portis, who both have top-5 talent. Sure, there is some risk involved, but if all goes well, this will be an awesome 1-2 punch at the RB position.

After missing the last 7 games of 2006, Clinton Portis hasn’t missed a game over the past 2 years, and his productivity received a boost under Jim Zorn, as he went for 342 carries, 1,487 yards and 4.3 yards per carry in 2008, compared with 325/1,262/3.9 in 2007. Portis is a very solid pick in the 2nd round, and he is likely to go in the late 1st round in most 2009 fantasy drafts.

2.06 -Bruno Boys Whooley - Andre Johnson - The "two-running back theory" is a solid theory, but it is merely a theory. There are so many factors that will determine your second round pick that it's foolish to blindly follow it. With so many running backs already taken, rather than end up with a second tier back, I've decided to nab one of the league's top wide receivers in Andre Johnson. Finishing second among wide outs last season in fantasy points, Johnson put up a more than healthy 197 fantasy points, a total that allowed him to reach double digits 11 times. It's going to be nice having that type of production out of my wide receiver position.

Andre Johnson is a great pick in this spot, he is just entering his prime, and has the ability to be one of the most dominant receivers in the league. If Matt Schaub can put together a full season, and the Texans can find an additional legitimate secondary receiver to go along with Walter and Daniels, Johnson could easily finish with the best receiving numbers in the league.

2.07 -Fantasy Football Librarian - Chris Johnson - This was a tough one. I almost went with a WR since there are 3 starting receivers in this league but I can't deny what a great deal Chris Johnson is at this point - plus I feel confident that there will still be solid WRs available when the draft comes back around to me in round 3. I don't fear LenDale White poaching too many yards or TDs from Johnson and think we'll get another heavy dose of Chris Johnson's explosiveness in 2009.

What a terrific rookie season Chris Johnson had, and there is no reason to believe it was a fluke. When Johnson entered the NFL, everyone knew about his speed, vision and great hands, but he also showed maturity, intelligence, plus surprisingly decent power to run inside, despite weighing only about 200 pounds.

2.08 -Fantasy Pros 911 - Brandon Jacobs - New York Giants running back Brandon Jacobs missed three games and still finished the season with 1,089 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns on 219 carries. You can imagine what his numbers would've looked like had he played in those three games. However, between a good receiving corps as well as backup running backs Derrick Ward and Ahmad Bradshaw, Jacobs likely will receive less than 250 carries next season. Still, he is one of the best goal-line RB's in the NFL and should have no problem exceeding his 2008 totals in 2009.

Since claiming the starting position for the Giants, Brandon Jacobs has missed 8 games over the past two years, so there is some concern about his durability, but the late 2nd round is a great spot to take him, and he makes a top-notch #2 fantasy running back. It will be interesting to see if free agent Derrick Ward opts to sign elsewhere for 2009. In the event that Ward does leave the Giants, Jacobs value should get a boost, and Ahmad Bradshaw becomes an intriguing sleeper.

2.09 -Fantasy Football Xtreme - Joseph Addai - The Colts runner had a rough 2008 season, rushing for just 544 yards on 12 games. While he did manage to score seven times, Addai was an absolute bust in '08 given he was a top five overall pick in most formats. What should fantasy owners expect out of Addai in 2009? Well, while I don't think it's smart to count on first-round numbers out of Addai in 2009, but he is certainly capable of it. The Colts struggled a ton early on in the 2008 NFL season, and Addai was hampered by injuries for much of the '08 season, but I think Addai and the Colts will get off to a hot start come September. If Addai's ADP stays in the middle-to-late second-round range as we near August drafts, get ready to snag him without hesitation. Addai could be the biggest steal in 2009 fantasy drafts!

Joseph Addai pretty much fell off the map in 2008, but he should indeed represent a nice value if you can get him in the late 2nd- early 3rd round of your fantasy draft in 2009. He is still just 26 years old, and had only missed 1 game over the 2006, 2007 seasons, so it’s unfair to classify him as an injury risk. There is no reason to believe that Addai will not return to at least 1,000 yards and 8 TDs in 2009, and he has the talent to exceed those numbers.

2.10 -Junkyard Jake - Ronnie Brown - I really wanted Joseph Addai here (nice pick Smitty!), but Ronnie Brown isn't a bad consolation pick. The Miami Dolphins far exceeded expectations in 2008, and it's clear that the new regime has placed them back on a path to respectability. The offensive line is still shaky, but adding rookie Jake Long last year was a step in the right direction. All in all, Brown had a productive 2008 while sharing time with Ricky Williams, finishing with 910 rush yards, 10 TDs and 33 catches for 254 yards. No doubt Ricky Williams looked pretty good in his return from refeer/drug suspension hiatus, but Ronnie Brown, now two years removed from reconstructive knee surgery, should become the clear feature back for Miami in 2009.

Ronnie Brown’s touchdown numbers in 2008 were somewhat padded by his 4 TD performance against New England in week 3, but all in all, Brown pretty much performed according to expectations in his return from the ACL injury he sustained in 2007. Now entering his 5th year, and the 2nd year of the new Miami coaching staff, Ronnie Brown could represent one of the best values at the runningback position in the late 2nd- early 3rd rounds of 2009 drafts.


Bruno Boys Fantasy Football said...

Thanks for the recap and we will let you know once we put together another Mock Draft.

All the best,

Marc Caviglis