The folks at SiriusXM are running a contest they are calling the SiriusXM Fantasy Football Salary Cap Challenge. If you are not familiar with a salary cap game, each player has a fixed salary and you assemble your team so that it falls under the cap. There are versions akin to the stock market where the player’s salary rises and falls based on their performance. Some of these stock market contests adjust your cap based on the performance of your team. The SiriusXM challenge does not appear to be of that ilk. Every week, the participant will be required to put together a squad with a $60,000 limit. What I do not know, yet, is if the salaries will be adjusted each week – my guess is they will. While I am talking about the contest, I would be remiss if I did not mention it is powered by www.myfantasyleague.com, which I humbly believe is the best commissioner service out there, for any sport.
The contest is free to enter and SiriusXM is providing prizes, including guest appearances on their fantasy channel and a spot in their celebrity experts league next fall. The scoring system is pretty standard, awarding 6 pts per touchdown pass, run or catch, 1 point per reception and yardage bonus of .05 points passing and .1 points rushing and receiving. The lineup is 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR/TE, 1 D and 1 PK. I am going to give it a shot. If you are so inclined, register and play HERE.
The key to salary cap games is finding the cheap talent that allows the inclusion of some high-end performers. The usual approach is to find your inexpensive talent first, add in your top shelf players next and then fill in the middle. Personally, I prefer to spend as little as possible on my defense and kicker, so I will always start there. Here is the squad I have entered for the inaugural week of the contest:
QB: Matthew Stafford ($6300) – The Bears’ defense is solid, but at home, Stafford should be good for his usual 250+ yards with at least a pair of touchdowns. The price of the top-tier QBs like Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers would force utilizing a lesser player at either RB or WR and I prefer to roll with Stafford and not have to downgrade one of those spots.
RB: Arian Foster ($7800) – The beast is back! Foster looked fantastic last week and with Andre Johnson out, he could contribute to the passing game a little more as well. Assuming the prices are adjusted, this is as cheap as Foster will be all season.
RB: Isaac Redman ($4000) – You have to go cheap somewhere and a starting RB for a team with a damaged QB will, at minimum, get a ton of touches. I am not expecting astronomical numbers, but this is as good a place as any in this format to roll the dice.
WR: Calvin Johnson ($8900) – The man is a FREAK! Back in the day, I had a philosophy. I wanted to be big and strong enough to beat up the smaller kids but fast enough to outrun bigger kids. Unfortunately, I was neither, but I digress. Megatron was no doubt the type that could beat you up if you stood there or catch you, then beat you up if you ran.
WR: Julio Jones ($5000) – This is probably the pick I am least confident with as at some point, someone is going to remind Matt Ryan that Roddy White is good, but at least presently, Ryan and Jones seem to have a pretty good thing going.
WR: AJ Green ($5700) – My second rookie WR helps keep the total salary in check. Unlike Jones in Atlanta, Green is Andy Dalton’s primary target and he should be able to find some open space facing the rather weak Jacksonville secondary.
TE: Owen Daniels ($5700) – Following the wisdom of the crowd here as every analyst and the horse they rode in on is citing Daniels as the chief beneficiary with Andre Johnson’s hamstring keeping him out indefinitely.
FLEX: Fred Jackson ($8500) – You can count on one hand the number of RB that contribute to both the running and passing game and are not lifted at the goal line, and Jackson is one of them. Do not be intimidated by the Bills facing the Eagles as Philly’s defense is not the pillar it has been in the past.
PK: Matt Prater ($4000) – This is the lowest salary for an active kicker and Prater is at home, kicking at altitude, works for me.
D: Tennessee ($4000) - Another wisdom of the crowd choice here as most of the rankings I have seen have the Titans in the top-5 for the week, no doubt because the Steelers are hurting with Rashard Mendenhall likely out and Big Ben working with an injured foot.
TOTAL TEAM SALARY: $59,900
There you go, the official entry of Fat, Drunk and Stupid. If you are playing, let’s have some fun and post your team in the comments.