Turn On The Jets Week 2 Fantasy Football Preview

Mike Donnelly with his week 2 Fantasy Football preview

Week 1 of fantasy football is in the books, and chances are you either won big and think your team is headed for the championship, or you took a beating and already have your sights set on the 2013 season (also known as Drew From Jersey Syndrom). Whichever side of the fence you may be on heading into week 2, my advice is to not get carried away. Don’t let one week of action affect your judgment too much when it comes to your players. In fact, the next week or two are the perfect time to take advantage of that sap owner in your league who does just that.

For example, if you have someone like Alfred Morris on your team, now would be the perfect time to talk him up to your competition and then pawn him off on a running back-needy team (we’ll get to him later). It’s just the way it works: If a guy performed well, you think you have a superstar on your hands. If you’re first round pick played poorly, then you hate him and already want to send him into exile (and I do hate you very, very much, Chris Johnson). So who are the guys you should be targeting after a slow start? Who are the guys you should be selling high on? Glad you asked…

(I also suggest checking out my Pre-Season Fantasy Draft Column, which still has some relevant information about which players are due for declines, and which you may want to target. Just skip past that part where I recommend not drafting Adrian Peterson.)

Buy Low Before It’s Too Late

QB: Matt Ryan – I tried to tell you Ryan was poised to join the big boys this year as the Falcons move to an up-temp passing attack, so I hope some of you listened. He has three legit targets in Jones, White, and Gonzo, and an emerging pass-catching back in Jacquizz Rodgers. He had a huge week 1, so this could be tough, but if you treat him as a top 5 QB while the guy who has him doesn’t, you can still nab your stud QB.

QB: Mark Sanchez – Am I a homer? Perhaps. He’s not going to dominate all year like he did in week 1, but after a few rough games coming up (Pitt, SF, Houston), the schedule is littered with defenses he can absolutely exploit. I’m not saying pick him up as your starter, but if you don’t have an elite QB, playing the weekly matchups with Sanchez and one or two others is the way to go.

RB: Jacquizz Rodgers – I love Jacquizz. Michael Turner is being phased out of the Falcons offense, and Rodgers is going to see more and more time. If you’re in a PPR league, don’t wait any longer — Go get Jacquizz.

RB: Shonn Greene – Like Sanchez, Greene has some tough games coming up, but now many other backs are there that are pretty much guaranteed 20 touches per game? If he’s owned by someone who doesn’t believe in the Jets offense, you can still nab him and have your RB2 in the bag.

RB: Mikel Leshoure – Kevin Smith is 100% likely to get injured in the coming weeks. Not 50% or 75% or 99.9%. It’s 100%. When that happens, the Lions are going to lean totally on their 2nd round pick from a year ago to carry the load. Hell, even if Smith is healthy, Leshoure will get the goalline carries, and with that passing attack, will have plenty of running lanes.

RB: Trent Richardson – After watching T-Rich stumble his way to 2.1 yards per carry in the opener, while Brandon Weeden showed himself to be the worst quarterback to start a season since… well… ever, the Richardson owner in your league may already be ready to cut the cord. He (or she) won’t trade him to you for peanuts, but if you value him as a top 20 RB while they’re already discouraged, a deal can be arranged.

RB: Knowshon Moreno – Just a hunch, but I don’t see Willis McGahee lasting through the season. Take a flyer on Knowshon.

WR: Julio Jones – I was scoffed at by many after ranking Jones as my #2 WR heading into the season, but who’s laughing now?! (Ok, done patting myself on the back). This won’t be easy after Julio’s 2 TD performance on opening day, but if the Julio owner in your league only values him as a top 5 or 10 WR unlikely to keep this up, you can make your move. Think of him more like you would Calvin Johnson (yes, Julio can be that good this year) and organize your trade as such. Trust me.

WR: Antonio Brown – The results may not have totally been there in week 1, but we saw all the signs for a breakout season going forward. Big Ben targeted Brown a ton, including several attempts in the end zone. He’s clearly their #1 WR in Pittsburgh, and he’s PPR gold.

WR: Braylon Edwards – More of a deep sleeper option, but Braylon is moving up the Seattle depth chart and is going to get plenty of looks. Could be a very solid WR3 for you.

TE: Kyle Rudolph – He’s most likely on a team in your league, but if he’s a free agent, go and get him. If someone has him, value him as a top 10-12 TE and make your offer. There’s a good chance his owner in your league doesn’t think of him so highly.

Sell Now Before You Have Enron On Your hands

QB: Robert Griffin III – (Ducks) Ok, no need to throw things. I know full well what RG3 did this week, but all I’m saying is it’s not going to be that easy every week. There’s a good chance you or I could get out there and throw for 200 and 2 TD’s against the Saints. If RG3 is your backup and you can pawn him off on someone who saw his week 1 performance and considers him a top 8 or 10 QB, make the move. That’s all. (Please note, this doesn’t apply for keeper or dynasty leagues. If you are in one of those and consider trading him, please get your head examined before rejoining society. Thanks)

QB: Cam Newton – Again, I’m not saying Cam is bad or going to be a bust. He’s going to be quite good. But if you can send him away for top 5 QB value, you should look into it. I think he’s going to end the season as a fringe QB1, in the 9-11 overall range. The Panthers are going to be more competitive this year, so that will eliminate lots of the garbage time stats. Plus, they’re trying to limit his rushing attempts.

RB: Marshawn Lynch – Another guy I was very down on heading into the season, and he didn’t do much to change my opinion in week 1. His value is down, but I’d still suggest trying to move him. You won’t get his pre-draft value in return, but that’s ok because in a few weeks you won’t be getting top 20 RB value for him.

RB: Alfred Morris – If you have Alfred Morris, congratulations on picking the right Redskins RB for week 1. Unfortunately, there is no telling what week Mike “the Fantasy Football Hater” Shanahan will sour on Morris and just decide on a whim to use someone else. Trust me, you want no part of the Redskins backfield. Trade Morris now, or pray he has a solid week 2 and do it then. His value will never be higher.

RB: Kevin Smith – See Mikel Leshoure section.

RB: Michael Turner – See Jacquizz Rodgers section.

WR: Roddy White – If you can trick someone into thinking White is still an elite WR option, then do it now. Like, right now. By the end of the season, White will be more of a WR2 than the top notch player you drafted him to be. It’s Julio’s show now in Hotlanta.

WR: Pierre Garcon – Like with RG3, Garcon won’t get to torch the Saints Swiss cheese defense every week. He’s a major injury risk (already hurt his foot), he’s inconsistent, and his value will never be higher. Send some feelers out asap for a trade.

WR: Larry Fitzgerald – Poor Larry Fitzgerald. John Skelton is/was absolutely awful, but at least he knew to just throw the ball up for Larry and he’ll catch a few. Now Skelton is out, and Kevin Kolb, who never learned the “throw to Larry” lesson takes over. There are few more depressing players to own in fantasy than Larry Fitzgerald. You watch all the boring Cardinals games screaming “THROW IT TO LARRY!!”, and then when they finally do its 17 feet over his head. Sigh.

WEEK 2 START AND SITS ONE-LINERS

(Here’s my Week 1 column, so you can see whether or not you want to take my advice. Sure I sold on Flacco and Peterson, but RG3 and Ridley? Boom!)

Play ‘Em If Ya Got ‘Em

QB Andrew Luck vs. Minn – Vikings Pass D is terrible while Luck gets Collie and T.Y. Hilton back.

QB Jay Cutler vs. GB – The aforementioned Green Bay defense makes Cutler a top-8 option this week

RB Stevan Ridley vs. Arz – Week 1 was no fluke; Ridley is the real deal.

RB Jacquizz Rodgers vs. Den – Look for Rodgers to play a role in this shootout.

WR James Jones vs. Chi – Greg Jennings is likely out, which means plenty of targets for Jones

WR Braylon Edwards vs. Dallas – Look for Dallas to clog up the run and give Braylon plenty of 1-on-1 opportunities.

WR Percy Harvin @ Ind – Percy is gonna go off in Indy; he’s a top 12 option.

TE Kyle Rudolph @ Ind – Harvin’s teammate is also going to go off in Indy, taking apart the middle of that Colts defense.

DEF NY Giants – Sure they didn’t look good in week 1, but they’re going to put a hurting on Josh Freeman and the Bucs.

Play ‘Em… if You Like Losing

QB Tony Romo @ Sea – Seattle is an awfully tough place to play. Wouldn’t recommend benching him, but don’t expect big results.

QB Ben Roethlisberger vs. NYJ – The Jets have perhaps the best pass defense in the NFL, and Ben is going to take an awful lot of hits behind that o-line.

RB Michael Turner vs. Den – The Falcons-Broncos game is likely to be a fast-paced shootout, and Michael Turner doesn’t factor into a game like that.

RB Marshawn Lynch vs. Dallas – Dallas will stack the line against Lynch, so he’s likely to struggle. Can you tell I’m down on Lynch this year??

WR Wes Welker vs Arz – Welker sure seems like he’s being phased out of the offense, and with a potential blowout on the horizon here, don’t expect him to play a major role.

WR Lance Moore @ Car – Quite simply, Lance Moore stinks when he plays outdoors.

TE Jacob Tamme @ Atl – A preseason favorite of many, I don’t think he’s going to put up the big numbers many expected.

DEF Baltimore Ravens – Just a hunch, but I could see the Eagles team speed giving Ray Lewis and the Ravens a ton of trouble.

Turn On The Jets Stock Watch – Around The NFL Week 1

Mike Donnelly with a special edition of the Stock Watch, focusing around the NFL after week 1

In case you missed my Jets Week 1 Stock Watch, you can read that here. Today I’m taking a look around the NFL and in familiar fashion will be buying and selling the comings and goings of a chaotic week 1. But since this column and site in general have a distinct Jets flavor to them, let’s start with the St. Louis Rams and their new genius offensive coordinator…

The Schotty Watch – I tweeted about this the other day, but it was wild how many people rushed to their keyboards to make some lame version of the same joke as the Jets struggled this preseason. You know, the “Ohh, Schotty must be loving watching the Jets not score down in St. Louis lol”, or “Yeah but Schotty was the problem, right?” garbage. So clever. What was even wilder is how those very people who made those knee-slapping quips hardly had anything to say when the Jets dropped 48 points on the Bills and looked sharper, more organized, and better prepared since, well, since before Schotty was the Jets offensive coordinator (Check out this breakdown of Sparano’s game plan). What’s even more curious is I haven’t seen anybody make mention of the fact that while the Jets were marching up and down the field on Sunday, the Rams offense sputtered and is currently the 31st ranked offense in the NFL, racking up a paltry 251 yards of total offense. I guess Schotty isn’t the one laughing so much anymore, huh? I am.

BUY: The Cutler to Marshall Connection – The Bears were my pre-season darling team to go from out of the playoffs to being a legit contender this year (believe it or not, I didn’t pick the Bills!). I know it was a popular pick, but the Bears could really make some noise this year. Jay Cutler looked like a new man out on the field Sunday as he got to throw pass after pass after pass to his favorite target from his Denver days in Brandon Marshall. Does this make me absolutely giddy as a Marshall fantasy owner? Yes, yes it does.

BUY: Adrian Peterson – Ohhh, that’s right. It’s Adrian Peterson and we shouldn’t have doubted him. Remind me not to make that mistake ever again.

BUY: Robert Griffin III and the Redskins – I’m not ready to anoint RG3 as a Hall of Famer already like some others, but that was quite an impressive debut. I fully expected Mike Shanahan to ruin this poor guy, but he looked spectacular. Unfortunately he won’t get to play the Saints laughable defense every week, but still.

BUY: Julio Jones – I couldn’t have been higher on Julio heading into this season, both in real life and fantasy football. I know I wasn’t alone in that camp, but last year when he was healthy, he was Matt Ryan’s favorite target, not Roddy White. Now that he’s in year 2, the sky is the limit.

BUY: Patriots Run Game – Just when it seemed like teams like the Jets may have started putting together the pieces to deal with the Patriots passing game, Belichick goes and changes his whole offense and incorporates a newfound running attack that absolutely tore up the Titans this week. Stevan Ridley to me is just a more talented and explosive version of Benjarvus Green-Ellis, and the Pats seem intent on riding him.

BUY: The 49ers – Wow, what a performance in Lambeau this week. They tore that Packers team apart in all phases of the game and quite frankly, exposed them in the process. Enough can’t be said about what a great coach Jim Harbaugh is, even if he appears to be a Grade-A lunatic.

SELL: The Packers and Saints defenses – All those years of people saying “Oh, well of course those defenses give up yards, their offenses are always so far ahead” look pretty silly right about now. It turns out their own offenses had nothing to do with it. Their defenses are just completely and utterly useless. Would it kill either of these teams to actually maybe cover someone? At one point in the Packers game, Aaron Rodgers threw an incomplete pass on 3rd down and had a look on his face like he knew they were about to be down by even more the next time he took the field. Hard to play with that kind of pressure.

SELL: Russell Wilson – I was on record as saying I didn’t understand all the Russell Wilson hype. I don’t know how it got started, I don’t know why it got started, but I sure hope it’s nearing the end of it’s run. Sure, he looked decent in the preseason against defenses that weren’t game-planning or preparing in any way, but when the lights turned on and the games counted, Wilson looked exactly like what he is: an undersized third round rookie quarterback on a bad team.

SELL: The Lions – My pick for team that stumbles form the playoffs to a 6-10 season, Detroit and their wackjob coach Jim Schwartz looked awful across the board on Sunday, as they almost lost to the Rams. The RAMS!

SELL: Drew Brees – I think the “Maybe that offense was more about Sean Payton than Drew Brees after all” whispers are going to start picking up soon. Drew Brees is the ultimate stat-padder late in games, so it may take a few weeks before people start to really realize there are problems with the Saints offense, but don’t be surprised when it happens.

Turn On The Jets Roundtable – Jets vs. Bengals Preview

The Turn On The Jets roundtable previews the New York Jets pre-season opener versus the Cincinnati Bengals

Welcome to our first Turn On The Jets Roundtable of the 2012 season. We will be doing this throughout the year to get multiple opinions in a single article to both preview and predict upcoming New York Jets games. Today myself, Chris Gross and Mike Donnelly discuss what we are most looking forward to seeing tomorrow night –

BUY YOUR TURN ON THE JETS SHIRT HERE

Joe Caporoso – It has to be Tony Sparano’s new offense. We have heard all off-season about the “Ground and Pound” so let’s see it in action. Last pre-season the Jets were awful running the football and it carried over into the regular season. Let’s see Shonn Greene churn out at least 4 yards a carry on his touches and Bilal Powell or Joe McKnight pop a run over 15-20 yards. The Jets are depleted at wide receiver but that is no reason to not give Mark Sanchez a chance to work with his new vertical threats, Stephen Hill and Chaz Schilens. And yes, it will be interesting to see Tim Tebow in action. I don’t think we will see much of The Wildcat but I’m sure he will break out of the pocket for a few runs with the second offense.

Can Austin Howard hold his own at right tackle and become a viable competitor to Wayne Hunter? Can one of the wide receivers make a big enough impression to prevent Mike Tannenbaum from swinging a trade? My money is on Patrick Turner or Jordan White having such a game.

Chris Gross – Command, control, and confidence out of Mark Sanchez. – The worst thing fans can do is expect Sanchez to come out tomorrow night and air it out early in his limited reps. The majority of his receiving corps (that he is most familiar with) will be sidelined, so don’t expect to see too many big plays out of number 6. Instead, look for him to, first, be confident in the new system. A very encouraging sign will be to see Sanchez exhibit early signs of the Tony Sparano “Know and know you know” philosophy. Look for Sanchez to show confidence in the new system, while displaying command, and most importantly the ability to protect the football. Improving his turnovers will be vital to his success this season, and Sanchez can take a step toward that tomorrow night.

Defensive Speed – The biggest area of need for the Jets following last season’s conclusion was team speed on the defensive side of the ball. New York is hoping that they improved on that with the additions of rookies Demario Davis and Quinton Coples, as well as veteran LaRon Landry, and a reborn Aaron Maybin, who finally has a full offseason under his belt with the Jets. It will be interesting to see these improvements in speed in live action tomorrow night. Expect Rex Ryan and Mike Pettine to come out swinging early with some aggressive blitz schemes

Mike Donnelly – Well I think my Stock Watch this week pretty much covered many of the things I’m looking forward to seeing in this game, but there are a few that bear repeating. Obviously I would love to see the Jets plan for Tim Tebow or see just how much Mark Sanchez has grown and improved this offseason, but this game won’t be a good barometer for either of those things in my opinion. The offense is going to come out very vanilla, work on a few basic things, and then get the starters the hell out of there before any more injuries can occur.

What we will get a good look at tomorrow night, however, is the second string on both sides of the ball. Players like Bilal Powell, Joe McKnight, Patrick Turner, Jordan White, Kenrick Ellis, and Ricky Sapp are guys I’m especially excited to see get extended playing time. I’d love to see a guy like Turner or White really step up and grab the bull by the horns and show that the Jets aren’t so thin at WR as everyone things. I’d love to see Bilal Powell justify the hype this preseason and show the Jets don’t need to go out and sign a veteran like Cedric Benson. And I’d really love to see Ricky Sapp continue his strong play this preseason and give the Jets a dynamic edge rusher to team up with Aaron Maybin. The thing I’d like to see the most though is everyone stay healthy, so let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope that is the case Friday night around 10pm when the game ends.

Turn On The Jets Beat Writer Rankings 8/8 – NFL Edition

Turn On The Jets beat writer rankings discuss the best and worst NFL writers heading into the 2012 season

This week’s edition of the Turn On The Jets beat writer rankings is going to take a break from our New York counterparts. Today we are going to discuss our favorite and least favorite NFL writers heading into the 2012 season. Enjoy and feel free to add your comments here or on our Facebook Page –

Joe Caporoso

Favorite – Greg Cosell/Mike Mayock/Trent Dilfer – I couldn’t settle on one individual. However, what these three have in common is their dedication to breaking down film and providing fascinating, in-depth Xs and Os analysis. Even in the case of Cosell, whose opinion I frequently disagree with, I respect the way he formulates his arguments and can understand why he has his perspective.

Worst – Mike Lupica – Legitimately can’t stomach even getting through a paragraph of one of his articles at this point. He writes about the Jets as an individual who only receives his information on the team via one of Sal Pal’s updates on ESPN or a Skip Bayless rant on First Take. Lazy garbage. Honorable mention goes to the newest scribe at Pro Football Talk Darin Gantt, who seems as if he was hired specifically to post two articles a day that end with a sentence about what wild soap opera circus the Jets are.

Mike Donnelly

FavoriteBucky Brooks – Going outside the box here perhaps a little with this pick, but Bucky Brooks does a great job and really takes the time to research and understand what he’s writing about before he puts it out there. I was put on to Brooks when he put out an excellent breakdown of the Jets new 46 Defense a few weeks ago, and I’ve been a fan ever sense, and also enjoyed his take on the Jets QB situation through a series of tweets. Unlike most in the national media he didn’t just rehash the same old nonsense and write “Sanchez stinks! Tebow is a winner! Last place!”, and I appreciated the time he clearly put into understanding things before throwing it out there and seeing if it stuck. I’d recommend him on Twitter, and be sure to check out his work.

Worst – (Tie) Evan Silva and Mike Florio – This makes sense considering Silva used to work with Florio on ProFootballTalk.com and they have continued to share the same brain ever since. Florio clearly uses loaded headlines and antagonistic comments to lure in readers, so there’s at least a method to his madness I suppose. That doesn’t excuse the fact he’s basically just a West Virginia lawyer who has a limited understanding of football, but still.

Silva is a homer Patriots fan who hates all things New York, he fancies himself an “expert” and talks about scouting and reviewing film, yet never provides anything worth a damn. He has the Jets ranked as the 27th best team in the NFL (I can’t wait to call him out on that one), and tore apart Shonn Greene’s “game tape” during games where Colin Baxter was the starting Center and the offense couldn’t function. Fair and balanced all the way! And that doesn’t even begin to get into his fantasy football content. I’d rather throw darts at a board than take his advice on which players to start. More on this in the coming weeks, I promise…

Chris Gross

Favorite Adam Schefter – Schefter, to me, is the cream of the crop when it comes to, not only NFL journalists, but to sports journalists in general. He certainly has some great colleagues at ESPN like Chris Mortenson and John Clayton, however, Schefter continuously separates himself from the pack with unbelievable insight. Whether it be analysis or breaking headline stories, there is not a writer in the country that gets after it harder than Schefter. I mean seriously, have you seen ESPN during the NFL Free Agency and Draft periods? I don’t think the man sleeps. Schefter is beyond dedicated to what he does, and you can just feel his passion through his work. He never writes with any bias whatsoever, something so many journalists struggle to do these days. Schefter simply gives honest, coherent, and accurate analysis day in and day out. If you had to compare NFL writers to NFL players, Schefter would be in that elite group similar to Tom Brady, Drew Brees, the Mannings, and Aaron Rodgers. Nobody does it better.

Worst James Walker – This should come as no surprise to anyone who is a regular follower of Turn On The Jets. While I can certainly respect the position Walker is currently in, as I am sure he gives valiant effort to his work, the man simply struggles to publish anything worth reading. From his AFC East Quarterback “ranking” system last year, in which he gave no explanation to how he was really ranking them, to his endless posts preaching the obvious (his most recent about New England RB Stevan Ridley and how he must restrain from fumbling this season to earn playing time), Walker truly struggles to write anything noteworthy. He constantly retweets himself on twitter, something many are still trying to figure out the exact reasoning for, and apparently doesn’t like criticism, as he blocked my twitter account after our initial Beat Writer Power Rankings, where I deemed him “the bottom of the barrel” of NFL journalists. Nothing personal, but JW is easily my least favorite NFL writer.

8 Easy Steps To Achieve The Perfect Fantasy Football League

Mike Donnelly gives you 8 steps to achieve a perfect fantasy football league in 2012

Outside of the Stock Watch, Mike Donnelly is going to take the lead on Turn On The Jets fantasy football coverage throughout the 2012 season. In his initial piece, he gives us eight easy steps to setting up the perfect fantasy football league…check back tomorrow for part 2. 

Pre-season football has arrived, and that means your fantasy football draft must be right around the corner. Whether you are new to the game or a long time player, there are a few things you need to know before you click “Start League” and send out the invitations to your pals this season. I’ve seen far too many leagues sprout up recently that are, well, pretty terrible to be perfectly honest. So while you may think you have everything down pat, I’m here to give you aspiring Fantasy Commissioners my 8 Easy Steps to Achieve the Perfect Fantasy League.

Veteran fantasy football players know there is nothing worse than having to sit and listen to some guy bend your ear for ten minutes telling you all about how awesome his fantasy football team is or how his league is the best around. This is especially true when you proceed to ask a question about the league and you find out it’s actually 5 guys and 1 of their girlfriends all with loaded teams. Except for hers of course, since she obviously drafted Tim Tebow in the second round (because I mean, did you SEE him when he ran with his shirt off in the rain?!). Or even worse, you find out he’s playing in a public league on ESPN with a bunch of strangers, and only 3 of the 10 team owners actually remember they signed up for it and even bother to participate. Where is the fun in that? It’s nowhere to be found.

Well fear not, fantasy ballers, because I am here to assist you in your never-ending quest to form the mythical “Perfect Fantasy League” (PFL for short). I assure you, the PFL does exist; it is just extremely rare. I’m talking “good Martin Lawrence movie”-type rare. There are something like 11 billion fantasy football leagues out there (ok perhaps my estimate is off, but it definitely seems like that many) and maybe 6 leagues that have reached the top of the mountain. Fortunately for you, I happen to be the Commissioner of one of those leagues. Now, did it start out as a PFL? No, but after 7 years of evolution, rules tweaking, 2 members kicked out and replaced, and even a 2 team expansion from 10 to 12, I have been to the Promised Land. And now my goal is to bring the rest of you with me.

So without further adieu here is an easy 8-step guide to forming your very own PFL! You can thank me in December when you tell that boring guy at the cubicle next to you who is bragging about his ESPN public league how you have seen the light, and that you are uninterested in his crappy stories. Here we go…

1. Get 10 or 12 guys together who know each other well and are comfortable enough to unleash hellacious insults on one another. This is very important — Not 8 guys, not 14, I’m hesitant to even put 10 in there. 12 is the perfect amount, but 10 will suffice, especially if the alternative is to invite one of your buddy’s cousin’s roommate’s friend’s that nobody knows into the league. Just as important, you have to find a good league website to use. It’s hard to find a good free one, so don’t hesitate to pay for a quality one. They can be pricey, but 150 bucks split 12 ways hopefully isn’t a big deal. You should look for a league where you can write your own articles, post pictures, have a good message board, and post polls without any restrictions. This will all come into play later.

And like I said, you have to be close to, and comfortable with, at least 10 of the other 11. That’s because in a PFL, nothing is off limits. That hog you regrettably left the bar with and brought home sophomore year of college? Fair game. The time you got cut from the JV football team and cried? Not only is that fair game, it is hilarious and encouraged that someone brings it up. Repeatedly. The time you drafted Alge Crumpler in the fifth round in 2008? You better believe that’s going to get mentioned a time or 17.

You get the point; The league should consist of friends. And that’s what friends do: Bust each other’s chops relentlessly. Fantasy football is no different. It’s about friendship as much as the football. Which brings me to rule #2…

2. No girlfriends/wives/significant others allowed. No exceptions.  Not only are they not allowed to play in the league, they are not allowed to read your league home page. They are not allowed to know the entry fee into the league (“you spent $250 on fantasy football but won’t take me out to dinner?” Um, yes). They are not allowed to know who is winning the league. If you were in line to collect a large sum of money as your prize, do you want your girlfriend knowing about it so she can start harassing you about buying her a new bag? No, of course not. You want to blow that prize money on drinking beer, eating wings, and gambling on the NFL playoffs that are coming up. If one of the other league members brought up an embarrassing story from your past, do you want your wife reading it and questioning you?

This is why this is perhaps the most important rule. After all, I’m sure we all have that one whipped guy in your league, and it won’t take much for his lady friend to get mad, forbid him from playing any longer, and then you’ll never see — or hear from — him again. At least not until he finds a better girlfriend. Now that we got that out of the way…

3. Have a strong scoring system. I hate hearing people talk about how they scored 215 points in fantasy and I think “Wow! They must have had all the top guys”, only to find out their league is so poorly run that it would make Jeff Ireland blush. Huge bonuses for getting 300 passing yards or 100 rushing yards? No. Bonuses for a 50 yard run? Get out of my face.

I’ll make this one even easier for you. There is one set of scoring rules that should apply in any league. These rules make the most sense. Take special note that receptions count as 1 point. That’s very important. These rules are fair, they are balanced, and they even the playing field across the board. Plus they take into account every yard gained by your team. How annoying is it in some of these leagues when you see a guy had 99 rush yards, but you only get 9 points for it? Those 9 extra yards don’t count? I hate that. I hate that more than I hate Brett Favre. Here is your new scoring system:

Starting lineups: 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 1 flex, 1 TE, 1 K, 1 team defense/special teams

  • Passing TD- 4 points
  • Rushing TD- 6 points
  • Receiving TD- 6 points
  • 1 passing yards- 0.05 point (comes out to 20 yards = 1 point)
  • 1 rushing yards- .10 point (comes out to 10 yards = 1 point)
  • 1 receiving yards- .10 point (comes out to 10 yards = 1 point)
  • 1 reception- 1 point (VERY important. PPR leagues are Far superior)
  • lost fumble-  -2 points
  • interception-  -2 points
  • 2 pt conversion (pass, run or receive)-  2 points
  • FG up to 39 yards- 3 points
  • FG 40-51 yards- 4 points
  • FG 52+ yards- 5 points
  • XP- 1 point
  • missed XP-  -2 points
  • Sack-  2 points
  • Int-  2 points
  • block kick/punt-  2 points
  • fumble recovery-  2 points
  • safety- 3 points
  • Defensive td-  6 points
  • Kick return-  6 points
  • 0 points allowed-  15 points
  • 1-3 points-  10 points
  • 4-9 points- 5 points
  • 10-17- 3 points
  • 18-24- 2 points
  • 32+ points allowed-  -4 points

That’s it. No questions asked. Just plug those in and watch how smoothly the league will run. Let’s move on.

4. Now that you know what the scoring should be, you need to know what kind of league you are going to run. I strongly, strongly recommend you get yourself involved in a keeper league. It’s more fun that way. The players become your players. You’ll always remember what your guy did for you and you’ll form bonds with those guys. Here’s how I run my keeper league: Each team is allowed to keep up to 3 keepers each year, but you don’t have to, you can keep 0, 1, or 2 if you see fit. Now here’s the kicker — you lose the round in this year’s draft that the player was drafted in last year. Example: If you picked Matthew Stafford in the 6th round last year and you want to keep him for this year, you lose a 6th round pick and you just fill Stafford in as your 6th rounder this year. This adds a whole new element of strategy when it comes to who to keep. Is Shonn Greene better as a 5th round value or Michael Turner as a 3rd? Should I just keep both? You may spend 6 weeks agonizing over that decision, but trust me, somehow that becomes a lot of fun.

 PART 2 is HERE

 

TOJ New York Jets Beat Writer Power Rankings – August 1st

The Turn On The Jets beat writer power rankings are back, who have been the top mainstream writers covering the New York Jets?

Turn On The Jets weekly ranking of the beat writers who cover the New York Jets is back. Myself, Chris Gross and Mike Donnelly have ranked our top five after a week of training camp. Let us hear your opinion on Twitter, in the comment section or on the TOJ Facebook Page…and for the beat writers, we know you are reading and we do award five additional points to anybody seen in this shirt

1. Jenny Vrentas – Surprise, surprise! Jenny Vrentas remains in the top spot here at the TOJ Beat Writer Power Rankings as we get started with Training Camp and things really heat up. Even during the down period of the past few weeks, she remained active putting out her Summer Q&A feature where she asked players on the team a few questions. It wasn’t much, but it was nice to still have some fresh Jets material to peek through. During the past week, she stepped up her game, and in addition to her great work day-by-day at camp relaying all the info to her Twitter followers (all the beat writers do a great job with this), she put out a few great reads – one about Revis and his holdout, one about Curtis Martin discussing concussions, and of course some things on Tebow. In addition, she was the second beat writer (Manish was first) to appear on the Flight 5 Live Internet Show, and fan interaction always earns bonus points in our eyes. All in all, Jenny showed why she deserves to stay in the top spot and that it’s going to be tough to knock her off. – Mike Donnelly

2. Brian CostelloOur man Brian Costello of the New York Post has put in an excellent amount of work since our initial rankings, and finds himself second to only Vrentas this week. Coz really killed it with material leading into camp, including a phenomenal piece on Rex Ryan, which was a bit overlooked due to how great the Vrentas piece was. However, Costello provided a very unique look into a similar issue, the overall physical transformation of Ryan. Coz also wrote a fantastic, in-depth camp preview, among several other quality articles that were published during the weeks heading into camp. Among his writing, Coz had an excellent guest spot on ESPN Radio’s The Herd with Colin Cowherd about two weeks ago, discussing the status of the Jets, the QB situation, and a brief pre-season outlook. It will certainly be tough to dethrone Vrentas this season, however at the rate he is going, I would not be surprised to see Costello be the one to do so. – Chris Gross

3. Rich Cimini – Regardless of the general opinion that Cimini is too negative towards the team, he has simply been writing his ass off the past few weeks. Beyond keeping his ESPN blog updated constantly and interacting with fans on Twitter, he has written a few very good feature pieces. Most notably, this one which was well researched and a much needed positive outlook on Mark Sanchez’s future in the middle of the endless line of undeserved criticism for him. This article discussing Darrelle Revis following the lead of Curtis Martin was a unique angle and another enjoyable read. Yes, the critical one liners can be annoying at times but it is impossible to ignore the quality of work he has been producing. – Joe Caporoso

4. Manish Mehta – Manish’s drop in the rankings has more to do with the excellent work of Mr. Coz and Rich Cimini the past few weeks than it does with The Daily News’ beat man. Manish mostly disappeared after mini-camp, and we felt he got off to a slow start once Training Camp really got going before really kicking some ass and getting into the swing of things the past few days. Hopefully he didn’t spend his vacation time getting big-timed by Gary Myers and being forced to read his long, boring dissertations on why the Jets are the worst at everything in a creepy Daily News back room somewhere. If Manish shows up in the next few days wearing stonewashed jeans and blocks me on twitter (as Gary did) then we’ll know he was brainwashed by Mr. Myers and then we’ll have to worry. Also worth mentioning, Manish has greatly curtailed his Sulia usage, and that earns major bonus points. I expect him to shoot up the rankings as soon as next week. – Mike Donnelly

5. Jane McManus Although she remains at the 5th spot, McManus has actually done some very good work over the past few weeks, just not quite enough to get the edge over one of the other four yet. She has been consistent with content on the ESPNNewYork Jets Blog, and has been tweeting Jets updates and news much more frequently than she had been in the weeks prior to training camp. She, like many other beat writers, put out a piece earlier in the week about Mark Sanchez using Eli Manning’s first three seasons as a pro to give himself a curve for how he should expect his fourth NFL season to go. Clearly, we agree with this notion here, as we reviewed a similar issue back in March. McManus has been doing solid work, but just needs a little more consitency to jump ahead in the rankings. – Chris Gross

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Turn On The Jets Stock Watch 7/17 – Jets Hype And NBA Edition

TOJ’s weekly Stock Watch looks at the negativity surrounding the Jets heading into the season and recent NBA headlines

Welcome back to TOJ’s Weekly Stock Watch by Mike Donnelly…make sure to give Mike a follow on Twitter here and give Turn On The Jets a follow on Facebook here – 

With this being a bit of a dead period in the NFL, this week’s Stock Watch is going to focus mainly on the NBA offseason, but there are two Jets related Buys and Sells I’d like to start the column off with:

SELL: This article on TheJetsBlog.com – I’d like to thank the dozen or so people who pointed this out to me. Now, full disclosure here: I’m a big fan of that site and read it pretty regularly. I’m also fully aware that there are very few original ideas left out there when it comes to blogging or sports writing, but this is quite a coincidence here, isn’t it? I mean right down to the intro:

In my very first Stock Watch in which I bought and sold Jets players, I wrote this: “That got me thinking. What if we could buy and sell players and teams the way we do stocks?” before getting into the under and over valued player stocks I’d invest in.

In this TJB article? Slightly different: “If you woke up this morning thinking Football players are a helluva lot like publicly-traded stocks, you’re right!  Obviously.”, before getting into the buys and sells.

You can check the whole thing out yourself and let me know what you think, as it’s still a pretty good read. I mean after all, it was good when it was posted here on TurnOnTheJets.com two months ago, so why wouldn’t it still be good now, right? Ok, perhaps that was taking it too far with the self-praise. That ends the “patting myself on the back” portion of today’s column. Let’s move on.

BUY: All the Anti-Jets Sentiment out there – I’m not buying this nonsense because I agree with it or think that the Evan Silvas of the world are right; I’m buying this because I think it’s exactly what this Jets team needs to hear. Back when this team was at it’s best it was when they were the underdog facing uphill battles. They were the only ones who believed they could march through the playoffs and pull off upsets week after week. They need to get back to that “Us vs. the World” mentality and rally around each other. The media and football fans everywhere are just lining up waiting for the Jets to fail so they can mercilessly rag on them. I don’t think it’s going to happen.

(If you’re not an NBA fan or just came here for the Jets content, then this is where we should probably part ways for today. You’ve been warned.)

SELL: Kobe Bryant saying the 2012 Olympic team could beat the Dream Team – I want to just fill up this whole paragraph with “HA HA HA’s” but I’ll refrain from doing so. The notion that this team with Tyson Chandler as their only center could beat the famed 1992 Dream Team is so ridiculous on so many levels, that I don’t even know where to begin. We could start with the Tyson Chandler and Kevin Love vs. Hall of Famers Patrick Ewing and David Robinson in the post; Or maybe we can mention that the ’12 team would have no answer for Charles Barkley and Karl Malone; Maybe we can start by saying this year’s team nearly lost to BRAZIL last night and were actually down by double digits at one point. All would be great starting points in picking apart Kobe’s statements, but I choose this one: They had MICHAEL FREAKIN’ JORDAN. Sorry Kobe, you’re no Michael, and your team would learn a painful lesson in that fantasy matchup.

BUY: The Dream Teamers responses to Kobe – The way members of the Dream Team came out to basically laugh in Kobe’s face through the media over his comments was downright hilarious. From Magic Johnson taking to Twitter to Michael Jordan literally laughing out loud and basically calling Kobe an idiot while playing golf and smoking a cigar (Is there anybody cooler than Michael Jordan?), it was all very awesome, and I’d expect nothing less. Especially since they were all right. My favorite response, though, came from Scott Pippen, who was guest commentating during a USA team game the other day and casually started they’d win by at least 25 points in a head-to-head matchup.

BUY: The Knicks Bench Moves – I know a lot of people were down on adding two veterans pushing 40, but the Knicks picking up Jason Kidd and Marcus Camby, while retaining Steve Novak and JR Smith were pretty excellent moves for a team that lacked depth big time last year. When Iman Shumpert comes back from his knee injury during the season, this team is going to be very deep and potentially explosive. It’s easy to forget how great they were playing down the stretch last year before being wiped out by the Heat in the playoffs, but this team can absolutely make some noise next year.

SELL: Jason Kidd getting a DUI already – And then Jason Kidd goes and does something like this that makes you question bringing him into the fold. If the reports from TMZ.com are true that he had to be carried to his car after leaving the party he was at, it makes him an even bigger idiot. These guys really can’t just call a taxi? Really?

BUY: Carmelo Anthony’s comments on Jeremy Lin’s contract – I’ve seen a lot of fans and media talking heads jumping on Carmelo for saying Lin’s offer sheet was ridiculous… and I just don’t get it. It WAS ridiculous for the Rockets to offer him that much and it WOULD be ridiculous for the Knicks to match it with the luxury tax implications hanging over their heads. I agree with Carmelo, and JR Smith’s comments about Lin’s contract causing a problem in the locker room were very telling. It’s time for Linsanity to move on.

SELL: Linsanity – With Mike D’Antoni gone, there was a good chance “Linsanity” as we knew it was over anyway, but with his move to Houston, we will all forget his name soon enough. He can still be a good quality NBA point guard, but all the publicity and hoopla are finished. By 2014, Jeremy Lin will be a good punch line to many jokes, and I’m sure the “30 for 30: Linsanity” on ESPN will be cool to watch in five years.

Turn On The Jets Stock Watch 7/10 – Jets West Edition

Mike Donnelly’s weekly TOJ Stock Watch is buying Jets West and selling on Evan Silva’s rankings

It is a bit of a dead period in the sports world right now, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of stuff going on that I can make jokes about and sell for profit in our fantasy land stock market. And after last week’s bear market where I sold any and all things, I’ll even recommend a few buys this week. Let’s dive in..

BUY: Jets West Camp – Last year with the lockout going on, it was harder for the Jets players to organize “Jets West” properly. Rookies couldn’t get their playbooks from the team or speak to coaches, and then there was the little issue of not even knowing who was going to be on the team. Santonio Holmes was a free agent, Braylon Edwards was in limbo, Jeremy Kerley was a rookie, and Plaxico Burress and Derrick Mason were, well… Plaxico Burress and Derrick Mason.

This year, Mark Sanchez got the band back together and just about all of the offensive skill position players are expected to be in attendance. Even bad guy Santonio Holmes is there and already causing major problems, as this Twitter photo he posted shows. By making that X with his chop sticks, he’s obviously conveying his hatred for his quarterback. Oh wait, sorry, I was doing my Mike Florio impression there and didn’t warn you, nevermind. Not only is Santonio there, but he’s going to be a major positive influence on players like Stephen Hill and Jeremy Kerley. Despite what the media would have you believe Santonio is actually a very good teammate and teacher to the young wide receivers. Speaking of the media, this year Mark has decided to close the camp to the public, which is a great idea, since the mythical figure that is Tim Tebow will be there. People can make all the jokes they want, but this 5 day camp out in California is going to be a major positive.

BUY: Spending a Month at Cortland – And if you think the few day “Jets West” is going to be a major step in the right direction, just wait until the team heads off to Cortland for four weeks. Everyone underestimated just how much of an impact the lockout had last year, not just with the rule changes and having to cram 6 months worth of activity into about 6 weeks, but it precluded teams like the Jets from going away to training camp. On a team with so many big personalities (to put it kindly), that bonding time is extremely important. In 2009 and 2010, many players spoke of how important that time bunked up in dorm rooms with only each other to lean on was. Well, it’s back this year, and I suspect it’s going to help solve a lot of the turmoil that may be carried over from last season. Plus, Vladimir Ducasse will get a chance to defend his King Ugly crown. That’s very important, too.

SELL: Evan Silva ranking the Jets 27th in the NFL in Power Rankings – I was going to break this one into 2 different sells, because Evan Silva deserves his own. That guy is just the worst. The. Worst. He got his foot in the door of the NFL world by being the guy who copies what beat writers post on Twitter, and pasting it (usually incorrectly) onto RotoWorld.com, a fantasy football site. He’s probably the guy at the office who makes inappropriate Tim Tebow jokes repeatedly and creeps out all his co-workers.  Somehow all of that qualified him to be an NFL analyst and post nonsense like this.

I’ve been over this before, but just for fun, let’s show Mr. Silva one more time why the Jets won’t finish as the 27th best team in the NFL:

  • Top 5 defense, arguably #1
  • Great backup QB, so an injury won’t cripple the season
  • Coming off a very disappointing year in which they still won 8 games
  • They dumped Brian Schottenheimer, major addition by subtraction there
  • Games vs. the awful Dolphins (twice), the hilariously overrated Bills (twice), the Colts, the Rams, the Seahawks, the Cardinals, the Titans, the Jaguars, and the Chargers at home in December. They’ve also got the Texans and 49ers at home, the declining Steelers on the road, and a hopeful split against the Patriots.

Not only will the Jets not finish in the bottom 6 teams of the NFL with 5 or fewer wins, they won’t even finish with an under .500 record. You’ve been put on notice, Silva. I’m going to call you on your crap all year, both Jets related and your horrible fantasy football advice.

And now, this week’s edition of “Why the Bills Hype is Wrong”… 

SELL: The Bills – While many in the media are tripping over themselves to fit Ryan Fitzpatrick for his Super Bowl ring, I’d just like to remind everyone of a few things:

The 2011 Eagles – Signed Nnamdi Asomugha to a mega-deal, and also added Cullen Jenkins, and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. They finished 8-8 in hilarious fashion, and they were FAR more talented than this Bills team.

The 2009 Redskins –  Signed Albert Haynesworth for $100 and two years later he is out of the league, while the Redskins are a perennial laughingstock. In fact, the Redskins make huge splashes all the time and are the winners of the offseason. Then they’re the losers on the field. Take notes, Buffalo.

The Chargers, Cowboys, Redskins – Every year they are the offseason darlings and paper champions. How’s that working out?

The “Chic” Pick – Every year there’s a team that the media drools over heading into the season for various reasons–strong finish to the last season, great draft, big free agent, whatever it may be. And it NEVER works out. In 2010 it was the 49ers, last year it was the Rams and Cardinals. This year it’s obviously the Bills, despite the fact they lost 8 of their last 9 games, have Ryan Fitzpatrick as their QB, and just gave the largest contract to a defender in NFL history to a guy coming off serious surgery and whose team improved last year after he got injured. They’re more likely to win 6 games again than they are to win 10. (Add the Lions to the Chic Pick teams that are going to fall on their faces this year).

BUY: BIlly King and the Brooklyn Nets! – Just as I’ve been saying for weeks, there’s a method to Billy King’s madness and he’s going to build a powerhouse. Ok, I’ve actually been mocking him relentlessly and selling Billy King stock like it was the plague, but whatever. If the proposed Dwight Howard trade goes through, the Nets will officially be a powerhouse and I will apologize for all the terrible things I said about Bill along the way. I still think the Gerald Wallace contract is terrible and was unnecessary, but the way he brilliantly handled the Mirza Teletovic contract–not giving him the full mid-level exception–can not be overstated, and opened the door for a potential Howard trade. Now, if the Howard trade doesn’t go through, they’re still stuck fighting for a 5 seed every year and suddenly he doesn’t look so smart anymore. But I’m pulling for him.

SELL: Tony LaRussa not starting R.A. Dickey in the All-Star Game – In the B.S. move of the week, Tony LaRussa reminded everyone why we hated him all these years, and he decided to start Matt Cain over Dickey for strategic reasons in an ALL-STAR GAME, despite Dickey being better than Cain in literally EVERY SINGLE STATISTICAL CATEGORY. I can not stress enough how terrible I think this is. Dickey is 37-years-old and has been the story of baseball this year. He earned this. He deserve the start, especially since he likely won’t have another opportunity like this in his career. And I don’t want to hear about the “strategy”. To say it’s better to bring him and his knuckleball in during the middle innings to throw the opposing hitters off is dumb, because with all the substitutions, they likely won’t even be the same hitters who faced the fireballing Cain earlier.

Turn On The Jets Stock Watch 7/3: New York Jets Rumors Edition

Mike Donnelly is back with his weekly Stock Watch, focusing on a handful of rumors surrounding the New York Jets

Mike Donnelly is back with his weekly Stock Watch, make sure to give Mike a follow on Twitter and leave any comments you have for him. Check back later in the day for our ongoing countdown of the top New York Jets on the roster. 

It’s Tuesday again, and that means another edition of the Stock Watch. I’ve been seeing, hearing, and reading an awful lot of nonsense lately, and that has put me in a pretty bearish mood when it comes to my buys and sells this week. I won’t be buying players, teams, and coaches in this edition, but rather selling some horrible ideas, predictions, and generally stupid thoughts that I’ve seen pop up over the past few weeks. The people buying this rubbish deserve to lose their fake investments in our fake stock market, while we’ll be cashing in. Let me show you why..

Sell: Idea Jets need another Veteran RB – To be clear, this is probably the only sell on the agenda today that I don’t think is totally idiotic. In fact, there have been some very logical arguments made in favor of it. That being said, it’s been debated ad nauseam lately on Twitter, Jets forums, here (and here, again) and seemingly everywhere else. This is why I think it’s a bad idea that just can’t happen:

1.) There just aren’t enough carries for someone like Cedric Benson here, and since he doesn’t play special teams, his value is roughly zero.

2.) TEBOW (!!!)

3.) Time to let Joe McKnight sink or swim.

In an ideal world, the Jets will run the ball somewhere around 575 times this year as they get back to their ground and pound attack, which boils down to about 36 rushes per game (They ran it 607 in 2009, 534 in 2010, and just 443 last year). Here’s how I expect the breakdown of carries to unfold, with McKnight graduating to LT’s old role, and Tebow here as basically a running back:

  • Shonn Greene – 275 carries (17 per game)
  • Joe McKnight – 110 carries (7 per game)
  • Tim Tebow – 95 carries (6 per game)
  • Bilal Powell / Terrance Ganaway – 40 carries combined (2.5 per game)
  • John Conner – 25 carries (1.5 per game)
  • Sanchez – 25 carries (1.5 per game)
  • Misc (Holmes, Kerley, etc) – 10-15 carries (1 per game)

So basically we’d be bringing in a guy like Benson or Grant to take over those 2.5 carries per game from Powell or Ganaway. The team invested draft picks in those guys the past two years, so why not give them a shot and see if one of them can prove themselves and perhaps earn more than the measly scraps left behind? Greene is going to start and get his 15-20 per game as the work horse (and no matter what you think of him, you can’t reasonably say Benson or Grant would be better options). Tebow is going to get his snaps and run 5 or 6 times per game on average, while McKnight provides the only real breakaway threat in the backfield. Those guys are going to play. There is just very simply no room for another running back on the team. It makes no sense to add one.

Sell: Idea that the Bills have surpassed the Jets – Yawn. This one just won’t go away, and likely won’t until some time around mid-November as the Bills are staring down the barrel at another 6-10 season. It’s amazing how many people see Mario Williams sign in Buffalo and assume that means a 4 or 5 win improvement is coming; especially since the Texans so easily replaced him last year, had their best season ever, and let him walk. Weird, huh?

And all the Bills backers out there will have to excuse me if I don’t hold my breath waiting for the Bills to overtake the Jets in the division. Without getting into all the specifics of why Buffalo just isn’t as good of a team as the Jets across the board, let me just say that we’ve been hearing this same nonsense for years now, and it’s getting a little old. First, it was the Dolphins — they were going to be better each year, Henne was a star, their defense was elite, blah, blah, and how’d that turn out? Then last year after a nice start, the Bills Bandwagon was just about full, playoff reservations were being made, and the pundits were lining up to dance on the Jets grave heading into week 9. Gang Green proceeded to kick the everliving crap out of those very Bills on their home turf that week, sending them into a tailspin where they lost 8 out of their last 9, securing them yet another top-10 draft pick. I smell a similar ending in 2012.

Sell: ESPN says Jets can go 5-11, 8-8, or 11-5 – Now that’s some hard-hitting analysis, James Walker and John Clayton! Couldn’t this same garbage be said about any team? It angers me seeing a clown like John Clayton on ESPN acting as if he is some kind of football expert, when in fact he probably only got his job by simply signing up back in the 80’s when ESPN was just starting up and realized they were short a football analyst. Can’t you just picture Clayton walking in, applying to work in the marketing department or something, only to see a sign on a wall at the last second that a “football talker” was needed, then furiously crossing off “marketing” and writing “football” on his application before handing it in? You know damn well that’s what happened. Ok, I’m rambling.

Anyway, here’s why the Jets won’t be going 5-11: They have a capable backup QB, so an injury won’t destroy the season; they have an ELITE defense; they play the Bills twice; they play the Dolphins twice; they play the Colts, Jaguars, and Titans; they play the horrific NFC West; they have the warm-weather Chargers at home in December; they will at least split the 49ers and Texans games at home. That sure looks a lot more like 11 wins than 5 to me.

Sell: Idea Sparano was a bad choice for OC because he was a bad HC – I’ve heard this one a lot since Tony was hired, mostly from pompous Giants or Patriots fans. Because, you know, there has never been a guy who could win Super Bowls as a Coordinator, but suck as a Head Coach, right Kevin Gilbride? Right Dick LeBeau, Steve Spagnuolo, Romeo Crennell, Charlie Weis, Dom Capers… ok, you get the point. Let’s not let facts get in the way of things here. Let’s not mention how when Sparano called plays in Dallas, they had tremendous success (Last week’s Stock Watch was centered on what Sparano brings to NY). Let’s not mention how he turned the Dolphins around from a 1-15 laughingstock to a division winner in one year. Maybe Sparano won’t be the long-term coordinator here, but he’s shown he can run an offense very well before, and more importantly, that he can change the culture of a team, which is something the Jets offense needed after the way 2011 ended.

Sell: Mike Florio says the old Chad Ochocinco is back! – No, really. The dude with the bad hairpiece really tried to push this crap on his website. And he backed it up with such tremendous logic, as well. You see, Chad was only awful last year playing with Tom Brady because he couldn’t Tweet and make a fool of himself. Says Florio, “For the X-and-O-obsessed crowd who summarily dismiss the impact of human factors on the game, think again.” You got that? The X-and-O crowd — the people who watched the games and saw Chad absolutely suck on the field — should have realized that Chad only sucked because Chad couldn’t be Chad.  It had nothing to do with the fact he’s washed up or anything. Seriously.

Sell: Rex Ryan is on the “Hot Seat” – I suppose if the Jets go 2-14 or something, Rex could — could — be in jeopardy (although the chances of a 2-14 season are approximately -0.0000003%). But that’s not what some guy named Eric Edholm had to say on Yahoo Sports last week. Nope, according to him, even a playoff appearance just “probably” keeps Rex safe this year. So, just to be clear: if Rex makes the playoffs for the 3rd time in 4 years, has 0 losing seasons in 4 years, and wins 4 (or more) playoff games in those 4 seasons, he still could be fired. Because it’s the Jets. Really, is it that easy to get a job writing on major websites like Yahoo or ESPN? Who is in charge of these things?! I can come up with things that make no sense, with no logic or reasoning behind it, with the best of them!

BONUS SELLS

(For those uninterested in the NBA, I’ll see you next week!)

Sell: Billy King – Holy crap has Billy King done a remarkable job during his tenure with the New Jersey Brooklyn Nets. I mean it’s clear he took notes from Isiah Thomas’s reign of terror with the Knicks, or as I call it, How to Destroy a Team and Their Fans’ Souls 101. It’s rare you see a GM come in and within two years just take an absolute blowtorch to an organization, making sure to leave no signs of life in his wake, but that’s exactly what Billy King has done! The Nets officially won’t be able to contend for a championship for at least the next 4 years after King’s recent exploits.

First, he traded the #6 overall pick in the draft for soon-to-be-30-year-old Gerald Wallace, a player already on the decline. To save face on that brutal trade, he decided to compound his mistake and give Wallace a $40 million extension. Then, just to make sure the team wouldn’t have enough cap room to pursue Dwight Howard (or anybody else for that matter), he decided to make a trade for Joe Johnson and his vomit-inducing contract (4 years, $89 million remaining), which is probably the worst in the league. Basically, Billy King (likely) kept Deron Williams in Brooklyn which was his main goal, but now instead of competing for a title, they’ll be in a battle to get that #5 seed and get swept out of the 1st round of the playoffs for the next 4 seasons. Well done, Billy!* Again, who hires these people?

(* If the Nets somehow still land Dwight Howard, forget I said anything. Go, Billy!)

Sell: Cleveland taking Dion Waiters #4 overall – I don’t hate Waiters as a player; in fact I think he can be a pretty good 6th man. But didn’t we learn from Marvin Williams that we shouldn’t be drafting college bench players at the top of the draft, especially ones who can’t shoot? I find it hard to believe they couldn’t have traded down and taken Waiters a little later. I just don’t think reaching for role players is the way to build a team, and that they probably should have taken Thomas Robinson in that spot. Oh well, it could have been worse: They could have traded the pick for Gerald Wallace or something.

Turn On The Jets Stock Watch 6/26: The Tony Sparano Edition

Mike Donnelly with his weekly stock watch, focusing on Tony Sparano’s offense

Mike Donnelly is back with his weekly stock watch. Make sure to give Mike a follow on Twitter and Turn On The Jets a follow on Facebook

I’m going to mix things up this week and and list all my buys and sells under the umbrella of a much larger general investment strategy. That strategy is one that the New York Jets incorporated this offseason in an attempt to generate much larger returns  for the 2012 season. That strategy is simple:

SELL – Brian Schottenheimer

BUY – Tony Sparano

That’s not to say that all things Sparano brings are wonderful and the offense will automatically be a juggernaut, because there are certain aspects of the offense I am still not sold on. Likewise, not all things Schitty (that’s a typo, I swear!) brought to the table were awful. There was some good, I just don’t know what they were. Actually, forget I said anything; Brian Schottenheimer sucks. Anyway, I think the general theme of selling on Schotty and buying in to the Sparano era is going to be profitable for the Jets offense, and not just because like many Jets fans, I thought Schottenheimer was awful (I even wrote a whole column about how the Jets hired him to sabotage their QB’s with his incompetence), but also because Sparano brings a sorely-needed fresh approach. One play last year summed up Schotty’s offense and his reign as coordinator perfectly: 3rd and 6 against the Patriots, pivotal point in the game, needed a first down. This is what he came up with:

That’s right. Five receivers doing 4-yard curls on 3rd and 6! Needless to say, they did not  pick up the first down. The Brian Schottenheimer Era, ladies and gentlemen!

Further evidence of how he repeatedly hamstrung the offense can be found in this excellent piece by Jenny Vrentas, found Here. If you read between the lines of the players’ quotes, you can tell they couldn’t stand working within the confines of the his offense — it was too complicated, too restricting, too dumb, and too inflexible. He drew up bad game plans, confused his players, and couldn’t adjust when he had to. Against the Raiders, they threw him a curveball by switching to zone defense when all week the offense had prepared to face man coverage. That was apparently too much for Schotty to handle as he couldn’t –or wouldn’t– adjust, the offense collapsed, Holmes fumed, and the Jets lost. Mercifully, the book has closed on the Schottenheimer Era, and there’s a new hope for Jets fans.

Let’s take a look at what we should be buying and selling when it comes to Tony Sparano:

BUY- Tony Sparano the Play Caller and Line Coach – Contrary to popular belief, Sparano did not call plays in Miami. He did however call them in Dallas during the 2006 season when long-time bench warmer Tony Romo took the reigns and played very well. The offense finished 5th in the NFL in total yards, at 360 yards per game and 5th in passing with 239 per game. They also scored the 4th most points in the NFL. (If you want a good laugh, check out the ranks Schottenheimer has had during his career.) As the offensive line coach, he also built one of the best lines in the NFL during his tenure in Dallas. Solid players like Flozell Adams and Andre Gurode became Pro-Bowlers. Marginal players like Kyle Kosier and Marc Columbo became very dependable starters. Quite simply, Sparano has a history of success, and a proven track record of being very good at certain things. We can expect him to bring those things over with him to New York and improve parts of this offense.

BUY – Tony Sparano’s Attitude and Demeanor – Tony Sparano is a no-nonsense kind of guy. He’s loud, he screams, he curses, and he isn’t about to take any crap from the players. When asked about last year’s Holmes debacle, he said how he was a head coach and he knows how to handle problems. Reading between the lines, he was saying pretty much that that stuff isn’t going to happen this year. The Jets offense needed a swift kick in the ass heading into 2012, and Sparano is the exact kind of guy to deliver it.

BUY – Shonn Greene and the Run Game – I know there has been lots of debate lately about Greene and what kind of player he is after Evan Silva tweeted some less than flattering things about him. Why we are taking evaluation seriously from a guy whose job appears to be highlighting things beat writers tweet about, click “copy”, and then paste them on Rotoworld.com, I don’t know. I’m a believer in Greene and think he can do some great things when given the opportunity, but even his biggest supporters would admit he’s not a superstar. He’s just not that kind of player, but then again, you don’t need an Adrian Peterson to win a Super Bowl. That’s not to say Greene can’t carry the load and help this team win games though, because he can. Joe gave us a great look at Greene’s career and his production earlier today, and provided some valid observations, but there is plenty to be said in support of Greene, as well.

First of all, the new “power” system Tony Sparano brings with him is going to help Greene immensely. Last year Greene at times was the victim of thinking too much on the field instead of just hitting the hole and going, which is what he’s best at. He was also victimized by horrendous line play early in the season, as Nick Mangold went down with an injury and was slow to recover. Brandon Moore also started the season slowly as he was recovering from surgery. Once the line got it together, Greene took off in the second half of the season in a big way, despite not being used to his full potential and still finished with 4.2 yards per carry, which is very solid. Shonn is a streaky runner, so it was maddening to see him get on a role during games the past two years and then the team curiously going away from him for large stretches. Sparano has made it clear he’s going to ride his hot hand, so that shouldn’t be an issue this year. Greene also improved his receiving ability a great deal last year, as he caught 30 balls, which doesn’t make him Marshall Faulk, but it does make him more of a two-way threat.

The other important thing to keep in mind about Greene is that he offers great value to the Jets, and an awful lot of bang for their bucks. He is scheduled to make just under $800,000 this year which allows the Jets to allocate their salary cap dollars elsewhere (ahem, Revis), and with free agency around the corner, you better believe Greene is going to show up in shape, motivated, and ready to put up big numbers. I don’t believe investing big money in your backfield is the way to operate, but rather to have a few low-cost backs who can all get the job done, which is what the Jets have done. Greene may never be the “bell cow” Rex Ryan proclaimed him to be, but in a platoon with a guy like Joe McKnight, he can –and will– be extremely effective. We’ve seen what he can do when used properly, and I look forward to seeing more of it in 2012.

BUY – Mark Sanchez – Yes, I’m going to keep beating the Mark Sanchez drum. Sparano has had lots of success with quarterbacks in the past. I touched on Romo earlier, but he also did very good work in Miami with inferior talents to Mark Sanchez. Chad Pennington (not the Chad we all love from 2002, but rather the guy whose arm was hanging on by chewing gum and paper clips in 2008) finished 2nd in MVP voting. Average talents like Chad Henne and Matt Moore put up some very nice numbers. Mark Sanchez is better than all of them, and now that he’s been freed from Schottenheimer’s stale offense, we can all expect big things.

BUY- Jeremy Kerley and John Conner– Look at the way Davone Bess and Lousaka Polite were used in Miami, and it’s easy to see Kerley and Conner being big contributors this year. As a slot receiver, Bess recorded 54, 76, and 79 catches his first three years with Sparano. Look for Kerley to blossom in that role this year. As for the Terminator, I hope he’s ready for lots of short yardage work, because along with Tim Tebow, they’re going to be pounding lots of balls right up the middle on 3rd or 4th and 1’s.

SELL – Wayne Hunter – I’m sorry, but I’m just not buying all the “New and Improved” Wayne Hunter stuff. Yes, he will likely improve in this new blocking scheme but that’s kind of like saying you went from being the dumbest kid in class to the second dumbest. There’s only one way for Hunter to go, because he can’t possibly get worse than he was last year, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to all of a sudden be good. He’s more likely to get Mark Sanchez’s #6 jersey imprinted on the MetLife turf after he gets him flattened by Mario Williams than he is to become a very good starter.

Like I said, it’s not all flowers and rainbows with the Jets offense all of a sudden just because Sparano is here and Schotty is gone, but things are looking up. I’m buying the Tony Sparano Era. I hope we’re all cashing in in January.

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