After ten fruitless weeks, I took off for Thursday night band practice secure in knowing the Raiders had indeed played very well for the three quarters I watched. And, it became clear to me that the Chiefs were beginning to win the battle of the line of scrimmage, and thus the game would fall the way of Kansas City, and similarly, the Raiders would continue with their quasi perfect season.
I eschewed listening to the game in the car as I drove to our rehearsal space, but our drummer, Nick, had the game on his iPhone, and damned if he doesn't announce that Derek Carr completed a TD pass to James Jones with less than 2 minutes to go.
Of course, the Raiders did win, much to the amazement of all of us, and I am indeed happy the team succeeded, and more important, looked like they have some players for the future. But, I would still like to see that the team has an actual plan.
However, again, it is important that we look at those long time rivalries and match-ups and never take what appears to be lopsided for granted, irrespective of the trouncing the Bears suffered at the hands of Aaron Rodgers.
And, if this topsy-turvy season is wreaking havoc with your football season, it is likely doing the same with your fantasy season, where despite a bunch of 5-6 teams, I am still in contention for the playoffs.
Dumb? Maybe, but it is fun.
Who I have my eye on this week
Latavius Murray (RB, Raiders): Boy, I simply cannot get the players I draft synced up with good weeks at all this year. I had Murray on four teams, and wound up dropping him a la Tre Mason and Doug Baldwin after a few weeks when they simply did not seem to get any playing time. Same with Jonas Gray (see below) and Charles Sims, and even Carlos Hyde. Murray is iffy due to the concussion he received at the hands of the Chiefs, but as with a lot of the other RBs noted in this graph, we should be looking at the 2015 season and freezes as much as anything at this point. At least I am.
Zach Mettenberger (QB, Titans): I like this guy. A seventh round pick last year, and really more of an afterthought it seems than anything else, Mettenberger has really played well, and with poise (take that Jay Cutler) as he has had playing time handed to him. True his team lost to the Eagles Sunday, but 345 yards and a pair of TDs is pretty good. I am thinking Mettenberger could be really good in the Earl Morrall/Kurt Warner sense. And, that is pretty good. The kind of guy I want to succeed, and in a two-QB league, he could be valuable from here on out.
Colts Defense: It depends upon how far your season goes, but the pretty good Colts defense has these opponents from here on out: Washington, Cleveland, Houston, Dallas, and then Tennessee. Clearly, a superior team on offense anyway, these opponents, outside of the Cowboys, probably will not give the team a lot of trouble, and probably will be forced to pass a lot to keep up with Andrew Luck. Could be a good play if still out there.
LeGarrette Blount (RB, Patriots): Cut by the Steelers and then signed with New England, with whom he played last season, Blount filled the void created when Jonas Gray hit the dog house (being late for Friday practice), rushing for 78 yards on 17 tries and a pair of scores. Pretty good short term, but if Gray learned his lesson, there's little point in spending too much on Blount.
Odell Beckham, Jr. (WR, Giants): I hope you saw Beckham's catch on Sunday. Get ready for the next generation. I know I wrote about Beckham previously, but this dude really is ridiculous, I think in the Albert Pujols/Michael Jordan/Wayne Gretzky sense. At least I hope he is, and I am seriously going to enjoy watching his career.