Jan 022014

Placed sixth in the open yahoo league. Underachieving season, to say the least.

Though not only the coach is to blame: Ray Rice had a very low-scoring season, Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone, Julio Jones his foot, and Mike Wallace was just plain unreliable. And Rob Gronkowski both started and ended his season on IR (but he did have a few very productive weeks in the meantime). Knowshon Moreno, off the waivers, was my most reliable scorer.

Missed defending my championship in the 2 Minuutin Varoitus league (was out of touch for a couple of crucial days).

Jan 162013

Fell from #2 to #12.

And have to flush the entire team, as Texans fell to Patriots and Packers to ‘niners.

The lone non-playoffed person, Rob Gronkowski is out with a broken arm, so it’s 100% replacement crew.

Sadly, this means that I’m not eligible for longevity bonus, that is a multiplier for sticking with the same players for consecutive weeks.

But hey, with San Francisco fortyniners in the NFC championship game, I’m not complaining.

Jan 042013

NFL playoff fantasy footballThe real ‘niners are resting on the wild-card weekend, but their Eestinmalmi namesakes continue into the post-season, following a league victory.

Yeah, I’m participating in NFL playoffs fantasy football for the first time ever: in the company of 2 Minuutin Varoitus readers once again.

And it is, as they say, a different ballgame indeed after the end of the regular season.

There’s no drafting, just a need to select the most productive handful of players (and a defense, too).

Jan 022013

fantasyfootball-nfl-trophies-2012-seasonWon the 2 Minuutin Varoitus fantasy football league.
As the attached image from the league’s trophy room shows, Eestinmalmi ‘niners romped through the opposition: 11-2 record in the regular season, most points scored for, and eventually the championship.

The superbowl was won on the shoulders of the inconsistent Dallas offense and the very consistent Chicago defense. This time Dez Bryant delivered, and delivered big. I foolishly left Roddy White on the bench (considering his knee injury more serious than it was, as the 27.3 points prove).

The keys to the victory were “everybody but the quarterback”: none of the playmaking guys I drafted of picked off the wire amounted to much. Especially on a reliable basis. So it was the RBs (Arian Foster, Doug Martin and Alfred Morris) and the air force (White, Bryant, Jason Witten, occaisionally the Raiders WRs) that won the day. And the Chicago defense, they were phenomenal, again. And picking up Shayne Graham off the waiver wire turned out lucky as well (though Blair Walsh wasn’t too bad). Larry Fitzgerald was terrible (but who wouldn’t, given the sad state of quarterbacking in the Cardinals), and the Raiders’ Heyward-Bey and Moore just fluctuated too much week to week.

A great season, will be back next fall.

Dec 032012

Missed the reports in the great blogging apathy of 2012.

The team in the 2 Minuutin Varoitus-league is doing well, 10-2 in the standings. The team’s been successful on twin shoulders: running backs and defense. Arian Foster (as expected) and Doug Martin (truly unexpected) have produced a lot, and the Chicago defense has been very cruel to opposing teams. Martin’s 50+ point game ranks as one of the highest outputs ever.

The team in the Yahoo Public 705803-league, on the other hand, isn’t. At 5-7, it’s been frustrating. The team’s been adequately, but lost a lot of close games. Peyton Manning, reborn in Denver, has been a steady producer whereas Ray Rice and Jamaal Charles have been woefully inconsistent.

Oct 032012

Another week, another split. Though exactly the opposite as last week, so both teams are now at .500.

The 2 Minuutin Varoitus- league team won by 74 points, probably the highest victory margin for my teams thus far. The opponent left a lot of points on the bench, and most of the ‘niners team members just kept pulling in points. Philip Rivers bounced back from the Bolts atrocious loss last week, Arian Foster was prolific as usual, and the Cowboys finally discovered the joys of passing game (both Witten and Bryant scored). But the highlighs were the two 20+ sources: Chicago Defense (for the second week in a row) and Roddy White (twin TDs against the Panthers).

The Yahoo game was a lopsided loss (machine-generated recap for those preferring procedurally added wit). Opponent’s main weapons were Roddy White, the Chicago Bears defense and Marshawn Lynch. Even with a respectable repeat performance by Jamaal Charles and a very promising game by Peyton Manning (3 TDs in a victory over the Raiders) the game wasn’t really close as the wide receivers had low-output weekend.

The bye season starts to impact the games in earnest, and as such more waiver wire action is needed (this week’s replacement of Nate Kaeding in the kicker position by Shayne Graham went OK).

Bring on week 5!

Sep 302012

Another week, another split. Though reversed from previous week.

The “2 Minuutin Varoitus”-league game was a loss. My team was sunk again by two factors: Philip Rivers’ absolutely terrible game (3.12 points) and persistently low scoring in the aerial attack, as Jason Witten continued to struggle (0.8 points this week). Alleviating the latter, Larry Fitzgerald finally found the end zone and exploded with 110+ yards. The brightest light was Bears’ defense, who brought home 23 points off the Rams. Opponent fielded Maurice Jones-Drew and Calvin Johnson, both back, both cementing their future Hall of Fame positions.

The Yahoo game was a resounding victory. Apart from Nate Kaeding (suffering in the terrible Chargers game) and Green Bay defense (who were broadsided by officials’ incompetence) everybody brought in more points than projected.

Bring on week 5!

Sep 242012

The second week was another split, one game lost, the other won, but in the opposite leagues as on the first round.

The victory in 2 Minuutin Varoitus league was tight all right, the margin was less than a point. And as the game was settled already on the Sunday, I left the last man out (Roddy White, who might have slipped and fallen in Monday Night Football). Keys to the victory were 20+ point games from Philip Rivers and Arian Foster. The receiving corps sucked, and brought in less than ten points. Chicago defense worked out all right even when they lost, and the replacement kicker (rookie Blair Walsh of the Vikings) kicked worth a respectable ten points.

In the Yahooo league I lost by seventeen points. The league offers a machine-generated recap of the week, which provides a pretty solid picture on what happened. With optimal player selection this would have been winnable, but the opponent had close to sixty points sitting on the bench, so that’s hardly a fair comparison. The ‘niners were blown away by Trent Richardson, the Cleveland Browns’ running back exceeded all expectations. The gravest disappointment was Julio Jones, whose 1.5 points was quite a downturn from his very productive first week.

In the real NFL the biggest news were the continued low production of the Saints, and the Patriots being taken out by Arizona Cardinals.

Sep 122012

The first week was a split: lost one game, won the other.

In the 2mv game I lost by ten points. Running backs were productive, the aerial offense less so. Both RBs scores, WRs only produced single digits worth of yards. Chicago defense turned out well, and Janikowski hit both field goals in Oakland’s loss. Philip Rivers brought in just a single TD, but played well nonetheless. Alfred Morris would have turned the game, but I kept him on the bench. Redskins’ very surprisingly effective offense is probably cause enough to look at him carefully already next week. But it’s too easy to play the Tuesday morning quarterback here, my opponent would have gained close to twenty points with optimal player selection.

In the yahoo game I put up a 41 point margin over the opponent. Peyton Manning proved that Broncos’ faith in him was well-deserved: two touchdowns in his first regular season game in over a year is nothing to laugh at. Ray Rice also showed why a #2 pick is good to have, he dropped 21 points on Cincinnati defense. But the decisive factor was the wide receiver corps – all three scored TDs, and Atlanta’s Julio Jones a double. Green Bay defense brought in only nine points in the loss to ‘niners, and I’ll definitely take the alternative – New York Jets – seriously, in the next weeks.

Bring on week 2!

Sep 102012

NFL Draft 2012 logoI’m participating in two fantasy football leagues this year: one (traditionally) at yahoo, the other at nfl.com.

Missed both live drafts, and thus got what the un-tuned autopicker took.

In the yahoo game, the Nöykkiö ‘niners, the reigning champion from last year’s league, got an early slot in the draft. Autopicker drafted second, and as the first player picked Ravens’ Ray Rice (Arian Foster was the #1 pick). In a ten team division, the team’s second pick was #19. And by then all the big name RBs and QBs were gone. Got Jamal Charles from Kansas City. Rounds three, four and five were also without a quarterback, as the machine concentrated on wide receivers. Hence the team’s starting QB, picked at #59: Peyton Manning. Peyton’s obviously no longer in Indianapolis (cut after last year’s injury), but taking over the very run-prone Broncos team in Denver. I would have drafted a kicker and defensive team ahead of a tight end, but that wasn’t in the cards. Got Sebastian Janikowski, Green Bay and Fred Davis, respectively. The last six rounds went for benchers, and as expected, the autopicker took no chances on exciting rookies, preferring the old school workhorses.

In the nfl.com game (run by the guys from 2 minuutin varoitus- blog, the lottery luck smiling again. Eestinmalmi ‘niners (the service refuses to honor “ö” as a letter) drafted second as well. But as the first team drafting took Aaron Rodgers, the autopicker landed Arian Foster. The division size here being twelve, it took considerably longer till the second round. Where the autopicker settled on Larry Fitzgerald (again, the high-power RBs and QBs were gone already). Early rounds brought in Roddy White, Doug Martin (an unknown RB from Tampa Bay) and Dez Bryant. Here, as in the other team, the quarterback came in very late. Only on the seventh round did the autopicker choose one. Here the choice was Philip Rivers from the Chargers. Defensive choice was Bears, and the kicker Sebastian Janikowski (who is the only man in both teams).

I had made absolutely zero effort in learning who’s who and what the teams’ strengths and weaknesses were, so being on autopilot probably wasn’t that much of a loss.

What’s weird is that neither team has any ‘niners or Saints on it. After all, Frank Gore and Marques Colston had graced quite a few earlier teams.

Bring on week one!

Dec 312011

Nöykkiö ‘niners is the champion!

The bowl game was again an eighteen point victory, and the second ever for a team fielded by me (the first one happened in 2007).

Key to the game was quarterbacking, on both ends of the gridiron. While Drew Brees produced once again (and dismantled the 27 year old Dan Marino yardage record in the meanwhile), the opponent’s playmaker, Tony Romo, netted a zero against the Eagles.

As in the semifinal, I was losing bad, before the last game of the week. In Monday Night Football Saints dismantled the Falcons, and the duo of Brees & Colston netted me 40+ points, and Matt Bryant, Atlanta’s kicker, added twelve. Apart from a suspiciously quiet Greg Olsen (a fat zero from a game where Panthers scored 48 points), the whole team delivered.

The draft, where I picked last went much better than I originally thought. Out of top 15 players, Nöykkiö ‘niners fielded three (Brees, Jones-Drew and Welker) and the top defense (SF). Two players were hurt by long injuries and would probably been higher in the standings (Austin and Forte). Then again, a lot of players went down this season, so I was lucky to retain the top guns in healthy form.

Bring on the next season.

And in the real world: Niners and Saints both in the playoffs.

Dec 302011

The semifinal game was against the #2 seed, again a longish shot at success.

Apart from Drew Brees (35 points), no-one really exceeded expectations. Wes Welker had a quiet night, and Marques Colston had no touchdowns. San Francisco’s defense shone again – another 18 points, this time off a susrprisingly well-dominated Steelers (a convincing 20-3 victory).

The game was tight, and at one point during Sunday (after the first set of games and the ones played on weeknights) I was something like 45 points behind. Slowly but surely the ‘niners fought back, and in the end clawed an eighteen point margin to come out with a ticket to the bowl.

Dec 302011

The last regular season game had a lot going for it. On account of the four game skid midway of the season, the Nöykkiö Niners were far from being guaranteed a spot in the playoffs. I had to win, and I had to win a team who was ahead of me in the standings and had whipped the niners earlier in the season.

The game was a high-scoring thriller.

And the victory rests on the shoulders of one man only – Maurice Jones-Drew scored four times and netted the niners a neat 37 points. When Marques Colston caught two touchdowns (of four Brees threw), and Marion Barber filled Matt Forte’s boots with a very respectable performance, the ‘niners came out ahead.

The bad news of the week was the confirmation of Matt Forte’s injury, the good news the return of Miles Austin (in the hope that I would never have to rely on the spectacularly unreliable Tebow->Decker connection).

Dec 302011

Regular weekly reports were amongst the casualties of the blog falling silent.

Even if the season is done already, I’ll still do the updates, albeit in a brief form, unaccompanied by peripherally appropriate imagery.

The game was significantly tightened by the heroics of the opponent’s quarterback. Cam Newton scored 38 points, a formidable tally, even on top of his elevated expectations. Drew Brees answered with 25 points of his own, and the game was finally settled by ‘niners shutout of St. Louis (netting a gain of 19 points from D/ST – as the opponent’s choice of Cincinnati proved to be sub-optimal.

By far the worst news of the week was the loss of Matt Forte to a knee injury. Its seriousness was downplayed at first, but it soon devolved into season-ending – capping the Bears’ monopoly on bad luck this year.

Dec 032011

Finally won again, the progress was getting desperate to say the least.

The game was a shootout – both teams put up 100+ points.

In the end it was the huge effort by Drew Brees (four thrown and one run TD) on Monday Night Football that settled the result. Slotted in Eric Decker (off a zero-catch game last week) since every other WR was hurt. And the Tebow-Decker connection rewarded – a touchdown and some decent yardage. Wes Welker had a monster game once again, but Matt Forte continued to be quiet on the offense. San Francisco’s defense was outplayed by the home team in Baltimore, and they netted just a single point.

The bench is on the depleted side due to Austin’s persistent injury, Beanie Wells put up close to 27 points against St. Louis, and was the most effective RB of the week (and probably leads to selection headaches this week).

Green Bay continues their perfect season, and the ‘niners suffered their second loss, the Saints looked awesome in a victory over Giants. And the poor Colts are still winless, making the case for Peyton Manning’s past MVP awards ever so much stronger.

Bring on week 13!

Nov 242011
rowing by pshab

rowing by pshab (CC)

Lost the fourth game in a row.

Lost so bad that the game was the blowout of the week in the league.

This being the Saints’ bye week, I knew it was going to be a hard game.

One of the guys picked up on account of Brees and Colston being absent from the crew was successful, the other wasn’t. Alex Smith once again led the niners to victory – with his low-key style (which doesn’t net that big points in the fantasy leagues). Denarius Moore suffered, like the whole Raiders’ aerial attack, and netted me a measly 1.40 points.

The game began really awkward, Eric Decker brought in a flat zero from the Broncos’ Thursday game, and the low scoring persisted. Even the usually reliable Matt Forte was held to single digits. The San Francisco defense brought in 16 points – without a returned TD, by squeezing the Cardinals something fierce.

Both of the opponent’s starting RBs went down with injuries before the halftime, but that didn’t help – got neatly outscored. And, adding insult to injury, his running backs off the bench would have opened an official can of whupass on the ‘niners.

Bring on week 12!

Nov 152011

Lost the tenth game of the season by the narrowest margin thus far – 0.56 points: 94.28 vs. 94.84.

Three players off the bench would have won me the game. But that’s no consolation, as the opponent kept the Chicago defense off the field – the Bears D took home a massive 37 points.

The ‘niners is now at .500 after three consecutive losses. And with the Saints’ bye rolling in, time to get two new guys on the field (I don’t trust Jay Cutler, and I need one more receiver since Miles Austin remains hamstring-hurt) – let’s see what the waiver-wire brings in.

In the league the Packers won for the ninth game, and ‘niners held back Giants for their eighth win.

Bring on week 11!

Nov 132011

The ‘niners suffered back-to-back losses. First a tiny one ad then a 29 point howler.

Got beaten fair and square – with the exception of Wes Welker and the San Francisco defense every player on the field was outscored by the opponent.

And when Reggie Bush suddenly found his game, and Aaron Rodgers once again torched over 30 points, the loss was certainty.

The two available benchmen, kicker Billy Cundiff and receiver Eric Decker, would have erased twelve points off the deficit – so this was just one of those weeks when no amount of juggling would have improved things.

San Francisco continued their already expectation-defying season, Colts lost once again, and Tom Brady failed to work his comeback magic in a loss to Giants.

Bring on week 10!

Nov 012011

The eighth week brought a 2.5 point loss.

A loss I brought on myself.

With the help of seriously underpowered Saints offense. The New Orleans team lost to the Rams after a strangely depleted offensive effort (after all, this is the team that put 62 points on a far higher-powered Bucs last week). In addition to the Colts duo of Brees & Colston, the rest of the receiving corps were anything but successful – neither Miles Austin nor Wes Welker reached the lofty heights they attained in earlier games. Greg Olsen, on the other hand, continues to impress – the Carolina tight end scored again.

San Francisco’s defense started well the game against Browns, but in the end couldn’t hold on to the shutout, the sacks and picks were plentiful, though.

But every team has its off day, and in the end it was my benching of the guys who scored, and insistence to field players who didn’t. Indeed, I traded for Brandon Jacobs (a whole point) instead of using Beanie Wells (14.3) – and used the recovering Austin instead of Eric Decker (who put up a very respectable 13.2 in Denver’s lopsided loss to Detroit). Then again, the opponent had even worse playmaking issues – sitting Steven Jackson (who lit up the Saints for 31 points) and the Tennessee defense (18 points).

Green Bay continues its march undefeated. San Francisco Fortyniners have reached 6-1 in their best start of a season this side of the millennium – they face surging Steelers next week for yet another test of the team. Patriots lost, they just couldn’t work their magic against said Steelers.

Bring on week 9!

Oct 302011

Seventh week netted the ‘niners a 52 point monster victory.

The key to the victory was the Saints 62-7 whupping of the Colts. Brees threw five TDs, two of them to Colston, and the defense played like a grabby wall.

The New Orleans’ game hid the deficiencies of the rest of the air force – Miles Austin, Nate Burleson and Greg Olsen combined for a total of 3.1 points.

Matt Forte scored well against Tampa Bay, netting 24 points.

Bring on week 8!

Oct 202011

‘niners roll on, with an eight point victory over a rival to the high spots in the standings.

Despite an awkward showing by the Saints’ mainstays (Brees copping three interceptions, the defense ending up with a flat zero in points), there was a bright spot in the New Orleans team: Marques Colston. Now apparently fully headled from a collarbone injury, his 17 points were a nice take for the team. The RBs were steady, though I am starting to worry about the Jags offense creating enough opportunities for MJD. Nate Burleson scored after a drought, but the difference between him on the bench and Miles Austin’s game was only two points – good to have him back, nonetheless, as the bye season is already upon the team.

In the real world NFL the biggest news was Detroit’s loss. To San Francisco, so this was doubly sweet. Nowadays there’s only one unbeaten team – the reigning champions, Green Bay, steamroll along.

Bring on week 7!