Monday, September 18, 2017

Early Season Fantasy Risers

The one truism about football is that players get hurt. No sport is as brutal is football, and no league sees greater attrition and turnover than the NFL. You might have been feeling great about your draft, but now it's Week 2 and your star running back is out of several months, or your elite tight end is already on the shelf.

To win a fantasy football league, you're probably going to have to hit the waiver wire to supplement the ranks with up-and-coming players. In addition, you might be playing in daily fantasy leagues on sites like Playdraft, where the key to winning a fantasy draft is identifying rising young stars.

Here are a few candidates:

Darren Sproles, RB, Eagles

One thing is now clear: LeGarrette Blount isn't fitting in well in Philadelphia. In Week 2, Blount didn't touch the football at all, evidence that his stay in Philly may be short and unhappy. Sproles got 10 carries, and was targeted five times, and looks to play a prominent role in the Eagles' attack going forward. Is he a number one running back? No, not quite. But there's no one in Philly demanding the ball, so Sproles will get his chances.

Brandon Coleman, WR, Saints

For the past two seasons, Coleman has been hyped as a possible beneficiary of the Drew Brees rising tide. Unfortunately, it's never quite worked out that way. But in Week 2, Coleman was Brees' preferred deep target, and caught four passes for 82 yards and a score. If Coleman now has the faith of Brees, the 6'6" wideout could prosper in New Orleans' high powered offense.

Samaje Perine, RB, Redskins

Feature back Rob Kelly didn't come out of the tunnel in the second half of Week 2, and now the job is up for grabs. Perine will be battling Chris Thompson for carries, and in Week 2, Perine got the lion's share, rushing for 67 yards in 21 attempts. He's got more upside than Chris Thompson, even if he's Week 2 performance didn't indicate it.

Chris Thompson, RB, Redskins

It's possible you prefer production to potential, though, and if so you'll probably want to target Thompson over Perine. Thompson lit up the stat sheet in Week 2, with two touchdowns and a 61 yard run. Perine clearly had the first shot at becoming the go-to running back based on how the Week 2 carries were distributed, but if Thompson can put up more games like his Week 2 performance, that might change.

Devin Funchess, WR, Panthers

Funchess elevated his game after the injury to Greg Olson, pulling down four catches for 68 yards. Now, Olsen will be missing for an extended amount of time with a broken foot, meaning his targets are up for grabs. Expect Cam Newton to look for Funchess more while Olsen is on the mend.

Dwayne Allen, TE, Patriots

Another potential beneficiary of an injury, Allen's value is largely tied up with Rob Gronkowski's health. In the first two weeks, Allen has been a non-factor, but now Gronkowski is already starting to show wear and tear. Knowing his injury history, there's a better than average chance of the Patriots needing to fill his void, and Allen might be the guy to do that.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

All good things...

To borrow a sports cliché or three: we're hanging up the cleats, throwing in the towel and knowing when to walk away.

This has been a helluva journey. I had no idea when I started this site four years ago that it would be something that was so addicting, so rewarding and so frustrating all at the same time. Four blogging years is like 70 in human years which is like 290 in dog years or something.

In December, 2005 I was just a naïve college student thinking that starting a blog would be my way into the sports-writing world.

Shockingly, it was.

I got to the point where I was a professional blogger, working for FanHouse, PlayboyU and receiving ad dollars here. Who knew that would ever be the case?

Times were humbling early. To spend the time writing a post and have six people read it isn't exactly encouraging. I didn't think the site would last. But over 1,900 posts and six million page views later, I'm so glad it did. To have people reading my words, leaving comments and laughing at my jokes was -- to put it bluntly -- pretty fucking cool.

I told myself that I'd stop this blog under two circumstances:

1. If it started slipping into mediocrity
2. If it became a job

Unfortunately, for the last year or so, it's been both. Spending hours writing posts after a full day of work has become a chore. On too many occasions I spent more time blogging than I did doing things that were far more important; this site twisted my priorities.

The Big Picture peaked about two years ago. The material was still fresh, jokes still crass and feeling still new. The recent slide has been a large part me and also the sports blogosphere getting so terribly cluttered that there were the few top sites and then hundreds of "everybody else."

In the early days, when bloggers were still figuring out this whole sports blogging thing, I knew my peers, the work they put in and what it took to operate a daily sports blog. Not so much the case anymore.

But it's been a fun ride. I've made friends, computer buddies and even got asked out on a date! Many thanks to all the loyal readers, the regular commenters (you know who you are!) and anyone who's stumbled across this small slice of the Web.

I'm still very reachable by email, so don't be shy. And I'll still be lurking around the blogosphere occasionally, checking up on all of your sites that I've come to love.

May all of your favorite teams win championships (as long as they're the San Francisco Giants and Washington Huskies). May athletes keep doing crazy shit to fuel sports blogs' content. May we continue to see huge upsets, epic games and unbelievable endings. Because, at the end of the day, that's what this site was always about: the love of sports.

Now it's time to hit that "Publish Post" button one final time. Goodnight sweet world. It's been real...

The Big Picture 2005-2009

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Best of The Big Picture: favorite posts and topics

Over the course of four years you're going to write some absolute crap. But every once in a while you pump something out that makes you think, albeit for a second, that you can actually do this whole writing thing.

Then there are the go-to topics. Our favorite ideas, people and concepts that we often go to in order to put a smile on faces.

Favorite posts:

The anti-Jay Busbee campaign
If Phillip Rivers died a famous movie death...
The time I took an hour-long shit
Pre-Gaming: Trick 'r Treat
Fuck Boston
CFB Coverage > NFL Coverage
We've been put On Notice
A Letter From Barbaro
An interview with the Steelers' pilot
Torre: 'Hot seat? What hot seat?'

Favorite topics:

Joe Buck
Things that aren't sports but are funny because we're really immature sometimes
Yi Jianlian
Tampa Rays
Ikea Games

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Best of The Big Picture: series and features

Four years, you gotta get some staples down. To write about random stories everyday is pretty taxing, so we developed some reoccurring series and features as a way to help readers gain familiarity and to make planning content a little easier.

Some of the features stuck, some didn't. Some got big, others were one-and-done.

Here they are in all their glory:
Lots of good stuff in there that should give you plenty of reading material to get you through your Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Best of The Big Picture: most-read posts

There are occasionally things we write that other people think are good enough to share with their larger audiences., Yahoo!, Deadspin and even The New York Times have linked to our work, which makes us feel mushy inside and brings many sets of new eyeballs to our site; and new people to tell us to go fuck ourselves with a toilet plunger.

Some of these high-trafficked posts were good; some were thrown together in 10 minutes after finding a neat story. All were good for the site.

Here are some of the highlights:
Go take a look and see some of our most-read work.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Best of The Big Picture Week

It's birthday week here. This site turns four on Saturday, so to celebrate, we'll be having a Best Of week.

Our favorite posts, best series and funniest jokes will all be showcased this week in a nice, tidy package.

There will be cake, ice cream and maybe some pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey. If you're lucky...

We're going to culminate the week with a mega-ultra huge announcement.

Put on your party hats, buckle your seat belts and let's have a fun week!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

You're not working today or tomorrow, so neither are we.

But we thought we'd rank Thanksgiving food:

1. Stuffing
2. Gravy
3. Sweet potatoes with two pounds of butter and brown sugar
4. Turkey
5. Pumpkin cheesecake
6. Pumpkin pie
7. Pecan pie
8. Mashed potatoes
9. Jello-like cranberries
10. Fruit
11. Squash soup
12. Biscuits
13. Other cranberries
14. Green beans
15. Salad

Happy Thanksgiving, knuckleheads. We'll see ya Monday...

Jumping Stilts for all the bros out there

I found my way to this website for velocity jumping stilts. Not sure how; I must've been wearing my Etnies, drinking a Mountain Dew and feeling EXTREME. But nonetheless, I saw these things that were totally badass!

They look super awesome -- can you imagine doing these plowed? It'd be called Velocity Jumping Stilts under the influence. Like a a VJSUI. That doesn't have a good ring to it. It sounds bad. Not bad: jumping stilts.